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 - 20 (29)
Thank you for your message.
Alice Ann Little
26
February
2021
I have been notified by My Heritage that I am a Mayflower descendant via Josiah Richmond, born 1696, Taunton, Bristol, Province of Massachusetts Bay, died Jan. 30, 1763, Middleborough, Plymouth, Province of Massachusetts Bay. His wife Mehitable Deane. I would be pleased if anybody could help me in finding out my connection.
Nova Metzler-Metcalf
23
February
2021
I think I'm related to Edward Fuller,not sure
Jean Kelliher
14
February
2021
My great grandmother's last name was Kingsbury
Her mothers's last name was Schafer
I was told they were direct descendants of Mayflower pilgimage.
Karen Kay Threadgill
13
February
2021
My earlier message is not accurate. Edward Bangs' father-in-law Hicks arrived on the Fortune. Following him was Edward Bangs on the Anne in 1623.
Karen Kay Threadgill
13
February
2021
My ancestor, Edward Bangs, arrived in Plymouth on the next ship, The Fortune, in 1621. That would make him part of the Old Comers. Am I eligible for membership in the Mayflower Society?
Dianne Couey
09
February
2021
I would like to find out if im descended from any Pilgrims. My great grandmother is Goldie Wright.Her dad is Charles L. Wright and mom ,Hannah Jane Whittaker. Charles L. parents are Charles H. Wright and Mary A. Harlow. Charles H. parents are David Wright and Olive Harlow. Mary Harliw,s parents are Chandler H. Harlow and Mary Polly Banks. I just want to know if this is true and which pilgrims
Maxwell Glenn Hawkins
04
February
2021
I am a descendant of Richard warren.
Maxwell Glenn Hawkins
03
February
2021
Am I a descendant
Rebecca Joy Harris
20
January
2021
I am a descendant of John Hart as a grandfather signer of the Declaration of Independence. Would that make me a descendant of Stephen Hopkins who came over on the Mayflower. Another descendant of both men were Marvin Snow of New Jersey.
John William White
08
January
2021
John White baptized 1861 Saginaw MI. Looking for his parents. He was born in Alleghany PA 1829. Need help
Thomas Banneck
06
January
2021
I want to know how unique it is to be related to 11 passengers from 6 families plus Robert Cushman who planned the voyage.

What is the most amount of passengers on person has been related to?

I am related to
Edward Doty
Francis Eaton
Richard Warren
James Chilton
Chilton's wife name unknown
William White
Susanna White
Resolved White
Isaac Allerton
Mary (Norris) Allerton
Mary Allerton

Maybe that is a lot...not sure.
Best part is I am not done yet.
DULANEY
16
December
2020
Were there any Dulaney's on the Mayflower?
Dianne Fraser
01
December
2020
I have searched relentlessly but haven't been able to find my Mayflower connection. What is the best way to start the process?
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.