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07 November 2014

#32--52ancestors -- Mayflower Links

Dear Grandsons,
Yes, you have ancestors who came over on the famous Mayflower in 1620 and celebrated Thanksgiving in 1621. No, their names were not Gormley. However, they are your 10th-great-grandparents — John Alden and Priscilla Mullins (also spelled Mullens).

George H. Boughton (1833-1905) painted the famous Pilgrims Going to Church (1867, originally "The Early Puritans of New England Going to Church"), a scene he interpreted from a quote in W. H. Bartlett's The Pilgrim Fathers (London:1853, p. 237).
They have become a famous pair — thanks in part to an 1858 narrative poem by the American poet, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, who also was a descendant of John and Priscilla. You have many cousins thanks to your connection to John Alden and Priscilla Mullins. The poem focused on a love triangle between three Pilgrims: Miles Standish, Priscilla Mullens, and John Alden. Longfellow claimed the story was true, but the historical evidence is inconclusive. Nevertheless, the ballad was exceedingly popular in 19th-century America and immortalized the Mayflower Pilgrims.

Miles Standish and John Alden purportedly vied for the affections of Priscilla Mullins, who utters, according to Longfellow, one of the most famous retorts ever: "Why don't you speak for yourself, John?"

John Alden married Priscilla Mullins on May 12, 1622. She was the only survivor of the Mayflower Mullins family. They had 10 children and built a home in what is now Duxbury, Massachusetts on the north side of the village, on a farm, which is still in possession of their descendants of the seventh generation. John Alden's House, now a National Historic Landmark, was built ca 1653 and is open to the public as a museum. It is run by the Alden Kindred of America (http://www.alden.org/) an organization that provides historical information about him and his home, including genealogical records of his descendants.

 

 
Alden House in Duxbury
 
Priscilla died in Duxbury between 1651 and her husband's death in 1687. Both were buried in the Myles Standish Burial Ground in Duxbury, Massachusetts.
 
John and Priscilla had the following children who survived to adulthood:

1. Elizabeth was born about 1624 and died in Little Compton, Rhode Island on May 31, 1717. She married William Peabody on December 26, 1644, and had 13 children.
2. John was born about 1626 and died in Boston on March 14, 1701/2. He married Elizabeth (Phillips) Everill on April 1, 1660, and had 14 children.
3. Joseph was born about 1628 and died in Bridgewater, Massachusetts on February 8, 1696/7. He married Mary Simmons about 1660 and had seven children.
4. Priscilla was born about 1630. She was alive and unmarried in 1688.
5. Jonathan was born about 1632 and died in Duxbury on February 14, 1697. He married Abigail Hallett on December 10, 1672, and had six children.
6. Sarah was born about 1634 and died before the settlement of her father's estate in 1688. She married Alexander Standish about 1660 and had eight children.
7. Ruth was born about 1636 and died in Braintree on October 12, 1674. She married John Bass in Braintree on February 3, 1657/8, and had seven children.
8. Mary was born about 1638. She was still alive and unmarried in 1688.
9. Rebecca was born about 1640 and died between June 12, 1696, and October 5, 1722. She married Thomas Delano in 1667 and had nine children.
10. David was born about 1642 and died in Duxbury between July 2, 1718, and April 1, 1719. He married Mary Southworth by 1674 and had six children.

You descend from their third child, Joseph Alden (1628-1696/7) who married Mary Simmons; they had a son, Isaac Alden (1666-1727) who married Mehitable Allen. They had a son, Captain Ebenezer Alden (1693-1776) who married Anna Keith. They had a daughter, Abigail Alden  (1721-1762) who married Ebenzer Byram Jr. They had a daughter, Mary Byram (1755-1819) who married Silas Ayres. They had a daughter, Hannah Ayres (1781-1832) who married Isaac Pierson. They had a son, Byram Ayres Pierson (1801-1886) who married thirdly, Catherine Hosslich. They had a son, Isaac Pierson (1847-1911) who married Katherine Maybee. They had a son, Claude Vernon Pierson (1886-1942) who took the Gormley surname of his adoptive parents who took him to rear when his mother died when he was a baby.  He was your great-grandfather. See my blog about him.
http://www.shakingfamilytrees.blogspot.com/2014/03/9-52-ancestors-blended-families.html#links

Your family tree names start with Alden and Mullins and then zigzag to Byram, Ayres, Pierson and finally to Gormley. Happy Thanksgiving and remember your heritage.

The sentimental postcard (above) was drawn by prolific card illustrator, Ellen H. Clapsaddle (1863-1934), who also did many other Thanksgiving cards.

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