Tuesday, December 28, 2021

"Old" in New England

TL;DR -- American Ancestor has proven to be a wonderful resource with regard to New England and beyond. As plans for the Plymouth 400th ensued and the time approach, more and more articles dealt with interesting details some of which motivated more research. One addition has been a look at the experiences year by year by R.C. Anderson of Great Migration fame. But, James W. Baker of long association with Plymouth wrote in the current issue about "popular culture" and mentioned a myth and included a reference for further information. That link went to the Nutfield genealogy blog. We have been noting more and more research articles providing URLs (or editors allow them). This indicates the potential for internet resources, when used right. We look at three organizations, two of which have a web presence. The third is of interest to us for many reasons and will be getting more attention. 


One benefit of belonging to the NEHGS is having access to "American Ancestors back to 2010. That would be about the time that we got started with this work. We have gotten the print version since we joined, but it is nice to review the contents in a digital mode. 

You know, as a reminder, the web was thought to be conducive to information sharing and more. That is, supporting research across time and space (disparately). And, it has done that, some what, as well as spawn a bunch of other things that will need ongoing attention. As with anything, it's good to see work from the past get attention in the present. That is scholarship, in part. But, too, there has been such an explosion that making sense of the whole deal (in about any context) is daunting, at the least, and virtually impossible, in the large. 

BTW, the yearnings for things that might help control, such as we see with AI/ML/DL, is more hopeless than one might imagine and opens up many areas for unwarranted gaming. Actually, that phenomenon of mischief unbounded could have been foreseen. Was, in fact. We have mentioned this theme and will continue to do so. 

Okay, after that prolog, what is this all about? James W. Baker, of the Plimoth Plantation and the Alden House, had an article in the Fall 2021 issue that was titled "The Pilgrim Story in Popular Culture." To us, it was instructive and represented a type of article that will be increasingly useful. That is, fleshing out history with information about people, their families and the local affairs. Usually, history squashes out such detail. The web will allow it to be brought back to attention. It's our choice as to whether this is a good thing or not. 

Two things motivated this post and are mentioned in the second bullet. We add an older group in the first bullet since the organizations doesn't get much attention outside of New England. And, there are members all over. Then, while there are more to consider for each group, the second bullet is the focus of the post. Finally, we add one that has direct interest to TGS, Inc. 

These bullets look at a group from the 17th, then another from the 18th, and finally, one from the 19th century. 

  • Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company - usually, with "of Massachusetts" appended. We ran into this very early on and have used some of their research. Over here, the organization dates from 1638, so that is old. Over there, the lineage goes back and century or so. Here, it is still active. There, they are active. It's nice to see that continuity. 
  • Old Colony Club - which, according to Baker, was formed in 1769 by a "group of elite young Plymouth men" to honor "their Mayflower ancestors." As an aside, they beat the Hasty Pudding group by a year. Baker provides lots of material that will be interesting to study. The early times and troubles have gotten lots of press, whether myth or story. He mentioned 'five kernels of parched corn' with a reference. Looked familiar so went to look. The reference came from a post at the Nutfield Genealogy blog (using one from 2020 - "The Five Kernels of Corn Myth at Thanksgiving"). Of late, we have noticed technical papers being allowed to use URLs as reference. These are being published by professional organizations, such as the IEEE.org. We have not paid attention to this with regard to NEHGS work but will do so henceforth. We have used Nutfield Genealogy a lot in our research. Heather Wilkinson Rojo is a descendant of Thomas and Margaret via daughter, Sarah Balch. 
  • The Old Planters Society -- was instituted in 1899, so made the 19th century by a nose. There were many groups formed during this time of the approaching 300th. SAR (1889) and DAR (1890) are examples. For the TOP Society, Col. Thomas W. Higginson was the first President. The Massachusetts Magazine was to be the official organ and provided information and meeting minutes during its brief existence. The City of Beverly has been sponsored several meetings related to the theme of old planters over the years.   
Old Colony Club

With respect to 'firsts' such as winters, we have looked at the early time (The First Year) and the later move of Conant (Massey's Cove). Of special note would be juxtaposing the English Wigwam with the Governor's House and thinking of the winter months. But, there are many 'firsts' for us to look at, especially when we expand to include the nation's wide interior and the left coast.   

Remarks: Modified: 12/20/2022

12/20/2022 -- Changed image for the Old Colony Club. 

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