16
September
2020
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00:15 AM
America/Denver

FamilySearch and Partners Digitize Mayflower Descendant Records

FamilySearch International, AmericanAncestors.org (New England Historic Genealogical Society) and the General Society of Mayflower Descendants (GSMD), in concert with the 400th Anniversary of the Mayflower, announced today that tens of thousands of Mayflower Society member applications (over one million images) and documented descendant family trees of the Mayflower passengers are now freely accessible online. There are an estimated 35 million descendants today of the 26 Mayflower couples that survived the first winter. The deceased generations in the applications are available online. Search the records at FamilySearch.org/Mayflower and AmericanAncestors.org.

In September 1620, 102 wet and weary Mayflower passengers and some 35 crew members departed from England, headed to the New World to establish the first permanent colony in New England. They would arrive in November 1620. Referred to as “Saints” and “Strangers” by some scholars, 52 were Separatists who escaped from England after several were arrested and jailed for their religious beliefs. For the previous decade they had found temporary safety in The Netherlands. They had not lived long there before they embarked for the New World. The rest were adventurers, tradesmen, or servants from England hoping for prosperity. By the end of the first New England winter, half of them had perished.

The descendants of these courageous pilgrims are in the millions today, and most have no idea of their historic roots.

Creating the Mayflower Database Online

The free online collection was created from two data sources—the 30-volume publication “Mayflower Families through Five Generations: Descendants of the Pilgrims Who Landed at Plymouth, Massachusetts, December 1620” and the documented applications for membership in the General Society of Mayflower Descendants, submitted from 1896 to early 2019.

The data was merged to create a single representation for each pilgrim and their descendants for the time period of the late 1500s to 1910.

Working together since 2017, the collaboration between FamilySearch, American Ancestors, and the GSMD has digitized over 113,000 Mayflower Society member applications and documented family trees for about half of the 26 Mayflower couples with surviving posterity (the remainder should be added by year end). The records were meticulously reviewed for accuracy by using the scholarly standard, “Silver Books" (named after the color of the covers).

It’s never been easier to trace your pilgrim heritage.

"This project will make the Mayflower Society's verification process easier and records more accessible. A great many people are Mayflower descendants who don't know it," said George Garmany, the governor general of the GSMD.

"This is an unprecedented collaboration between 3 of the ‘greats.’ FamilySearch is a giant of the field and brings the best technologies to bear. The Mayflower Society is one of the most esteemed hereditary societies, and it champions the story of the Pilgrims. And American Ancestors is the public face of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, the founding genealogical society in the world and best known for maintaining the highest standards in the field of genealogy," said Brenton Simons, president and CEO of AmericanAncestors.org.

Simons says the free online access to the documents and lineages from the verified Mayflower Society member applications sheds new light on one of America's greatest founding legacies.

How to Connect to Your Mayflower Ancestor

Garmany suggests that individuals start by looking at their own family tree, particularly if there's a large element in New England, to see if they might have a potential Pilgrim line. Then search the online database to see if that ancestral line has been previously verified through one of the member applications.

Of course, research is easiest if you know you share a surname with a surviving Mayflower passenger. You just work backwards toward a connection. But most people don’t have such luck, so the next step is to look for ancestors that have New England roots and go as far back as you can. Then go wide by looking at spouse names on every side. If you tie into any of the family trees of verified descendants—you’ve just added some very fun history to your family.

Search the Mayflower descendants’ family trees at FamilySearch.org/Mayflower and AmericanAncestors.org.

RELATED

Take a Virtual Tour of the Mayflower

 

 

About the New England Historic Genealogical Society

New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS)—known to many as American Ancestors—is the world’s largest nonprofit society dedicated to family history, serving more than 260,000 members and millions of online users with 1.4 billion records at AmericanAncestors.org. NEHGS was formally constituted in March of 1845 by an act of the legislature of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and is home to a world-class research library and archive, an expert staff, offers an award-winning genealogical research website, and maintains a publishing division producing original genealogical research, scholarship, and instruction each year.

About FamilySearch

FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. FamilySearch is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch and its predecessors have been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources free online at FamilySearch.org or through over 5,000 family history centers in 129 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Comments 1 - 16 (16)
Thank you for your message.
Jess
23
November
2020
I have conflicting info about Thankful Bassett Barlow. Her mother was Thankful Fuller 1691-1732 and her father was Nathan Bassett 1715-1791.

Thankful Bassett Barlow died in 1850 and is buried in Lee, Berkshire, MA with verifiable tombstone.

Can't find records for Thankful Bassett Barlow to verify her birth, who she married, and who are her parents.

Thanks so much!!
Lyn Rasmussen
23
November
2020
Hi Jess,
I am writing in response to your inquiry concerning the line of Thankful Bassett Barlow the daughter of Thankful Fuller and Nathan Bassett. The 400th Anniversary of the landing at Plymouth is an exciting time to discover your Mayflower connection. FamilySearch has multiple resources to help you with your Mayflower line. I recommend checking the resources listed below.

I think the Thankful Fuller you are looking for is FS ID LZTR-GVP

FamilySearch Research Wiki article: Mayflower Passenger List
https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/Mayflower_Passenger_List
From this list you can click on the FamilySearch Family Tree ID in the right column. The ID link will take you to the Mayflower passenger’s details page in FamilySearch Family Tree. From the details page you can select “View My Relationship” (upper right corner).

FamilySearch Community
https://community.familysearch.org/s/?language=en_US
The FamilySearch Community is a friendly place where you can post questions to the general genealogical community. You may find the help you need by connecting with the community.

RelativeFinder
https://relativefinder.org/#/main
Relative Finder, a FamilySearch partner, is a helpful and fun place to discover how you are related to famous people in history, including the Mayflower passengers. Relative Finder will ask you to sign in using your FamilySearch username and password. You will then be directed to a page where you can select Mayflower Passengers Group.

Family History Library Virtual Research Strategy Sessions
https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/Virtual_Research_Strategy_Sessions
Book a virtual Research Strategy Session with a Family History Library research specialist.

FamilySearch Digital Books
https://www.familysearch.org/library/books/records/item/369410-redirection
There are many books written on the Edward Fuller family. This particular one brings down the Edward Fuller descendants for four generations and is available digitally through FamilySearch.
Mayflower Families Through Five Generations : Descendants of the Pilgrims Who Landed At Plymouth, Mass., December 1620 This set of books, often referred to at the “Silver Books” brings down the descendants of the Mayflower through five generations. It is published by the General Society of Mayflower Descendants and is available for purchase on their website. https://www.themayflowersociety.org/shop/books-publications

American Ancestors Digital Books
https://digital.americanancestors.org/
The digital book collections at American Ancestors might have works on the Edward Fuller family descendants. AmericanAncestors offers 300 years of Mayflower Society applications to view with a membership.

I sincerely hope these resources will provide the answers you are searching for concerning your Mayflower line.

Best,
Lyn
Lyn Rasmussen, CG
US&Can Research Specialist
Family History Library

Karen Duncan
18
November
2020
So wondering if there is a way to get the View My Relationship to show our Mayflower ancestors that have pedigree collapse. It’s just such a clean view. I knew there were 5 Mayflower ancestors through my paternal grandmother (many hours with her in the church library on North Temple scouring the microfiche when it was a kid). But the link you all sent me has 13 Mayflower ancestors, some of whom I knew were through my grandma but are showing another pathway through my paternal grandfather. And now that I’ve played with the fan view country of origin I can easily see several maternal grandmother ancestors made it to the Massachusetts area in the 1620s-1630s. Would love to see all the paths back to those 13 Mayflower ancestors in a clean layout (and I’m definitely digging into all the other early arrivals in the U.S.)
Lyn Rasmussen
23
November
2020
Hi Karen,
I am writing in response to your inquiry concerning the problem with pedigree collapse. I recommend checking the resources listed below. I think the wiki article and Relative Finder most helpful with your situation.

FamilySearch Research Wiki article: Mayflower Passenger List
https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/Mayflower_Passenger_List
From this list you can click on the FamilySearch Family Tree ID in the right column. The ID link will take you to the Mayflower passenger’s details page in FamilySearch Family Tree. From the details page you can select “View My Relationship” (upper right corner).

RelativeFinder
https://relativefinder.org/#/main
Relative Finder, a FamilySearch partner, is a helpful and fun place to discover how you are related to famous people in history, including the Mayflower passengers. Relative Finder will ask you to sign in using your FamilySearch username and password. You will then be directed to a page where you can select Mayflower Passengers Group. Try having a family member who is related only on the side you are trying to find, such as a cousin. This might show the Mayflower relationships coming through a different line.

Family History Library Virtual Research Strategy Sessions
https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/Virtual_Research_Strategy_Sessions
Book a virtual Research Strategy Session with a Family History Library research specialist. Anyone on the U.S. team should be able to assist you.

FamilySearch Community
https://community.familysearch.org/s/?language=en_US
The FamilySearch Community is a friendly place where you can post questions to the general genealogical community. You may find the help you need by connecting with the community. Others may be having the same problem.

I sincerely hope these resources will provide the answers you are searching for concerning your Mayflower line.

Best,
Lyn
Lyn Rasmussen, CG
US&Can Research Specialist
Family History Library
Karoleen Humphrey Wood
16
November
2020
Does having the Sister of Gov. BRADFORD in chart qualify as a descendent?
Barbara Taylor
17
November
2020
Hi cousin :) No, his sister Alice was not a passenger on the Mayflower. Only actual passengers and their children are eligible for membership in the Mayflower Society. I am a descendant of Gov. William Bradford by the way :)
Margaret Reagan
16
November
2020
I need help researching my Mayflower ancestor. My DAR Patriot is Lt. Daniel Byington . I have many ancestors going back to early 1600’s but haven’t been able to find the Mayflower connection.
VIRGIIA G. WARDLE VROTHERSON
07
October
2020
interested in mayflower passenger lineage for george wardle family & lyman curtis.
Juanita Sawyer
03
October
2020
I am a descendant of Stephen Hopkins & his son, Giles, Mayflower passengers. Stephen was helpful in dealing with the New England Indian tribes as he had experience in previous dealings with Indians in Virginia several years earlier. I'm also related to John Rolfe who, along with Stephen in about 1609, sailed from England for Jamestown, Virginia aboard the Sea Venture. Unfortunately, the ship was caught in a hurricane in the Atlantic which lasted about 3 days & nights, ending up on reefs at the Bermuda Islands. After about a 10 month stay in Bermuda the crew & passengers were able to build two small ships on which the survivors were able to reach Virginia finally. Here Rolfe was married to the Indian Princess Pocahontas and they had a son, Thomas. While on a visit to England sometime later, Pocahontas became ill and died. Rolfe left Thomas in England where he was raised by relatives and when Rolfe returned to the Jamestown area, he developed a predominant tobacco plantation. He remarried & when an Indian uprising came in 1622 over 300 settlers were killed and the Rolfes were presumably among them.
Nancy Broertjes
16
November
2020
I am also a descendant of Stephen and Giles Hopkins.....through John Garrison, DAR. Sorry I don't have it all memorized....it would make my head explode.
Ruth Burnett Estes
23
September
2020
I am a descendant of John Howland. I want to thank you for making the web sight. I will use it a lot.
Beauchamp
22
September
2020
I know we have been here a very long and for the most part we have not left the shore. We are from the Perry Hawkins area
Sandra
20
September
2020
Disappointing results. Mayflower passengers William Bradford, William Brewster, and Richard Warren are totally missing, as well as all of their descendants. Also, John Alden and Priscilla Mullins only have one child in the database. I am curious as to what percentage of this project is estimated to be complete.
Paul Nauta
22
September
2020
Sandra,

"...has digitized over 113,000 Mayflower Society member applications and documented family trees for about half of the 26 Mayflower couples with surviving posterity (the remainder should be added by year end)." So the remainder should be done by the end of the year. Please check back in November/December. Thanks for your interest and support.
Steve
18
September
2020
Yes, these lines are through 2019. My wife's name is published as the author of her line to Samuel Fuller which was approved in 2017. No permission asked; no forewarning from the GSMD. I don't see her approved lines to the Chiltons and Allertons published yet.
Linda
17
November
2020
The lineage trees built from data of the Mayflower Society applications are displayed in the Genealogies section of FamilySearch's website as they are completed. These family trees should be fully published in 2021, with the exception of living individuals protected through privacy data restrictions. This data preservation project was approved through the 2017 Congress of the General Society of Mayflower Descendants. For more information, please contact the General Society at www.themayflowersociety.org.
Sarah Speer
17
September
2020
Related to Dr. Samuel Fuller his brother Edward, The Hopkins, Billingtons, and Eaton's.
Monette Cortez
17
September
2020
Descendent of Myles Standish, William Mullins, John Alden and Priscilla Mullins

Happy for this joint venture!
Bowker
17
September
2020
First recorded birth 1621
Susan Rose
17
September
2020
A decendent of Richard Warren
Terri Goodin
26
September
2020
I am also a descendant of Richard Warren, through Mary Wait and John Bement of Ashfield, Massachusetts. They are my 7th great-grandparents. They are listed as descendants of Richard Warren, but I have not traced my lineage between the Bements and Richard Warren. That is what I would like to do next, so I am anxious for the digitizing of records to be completed.
Barbara Mary Kurfis
16
September
2020
A decendent of Hopkins,Cooke mixed with Native Pokanokets
Al Wilkerson, Judy Campbell, Nancy Mehan
16
September
2020
This is access to a lot of our family records. We have William Bradford, Elizabeth Tilley, John Howland confirmed and recently I found through DNA match on ancestry.com that we are also related to Hopkins family.