David Hackett Fischer, in his marvelous book
Albion's Seed, estimates that there are 16 million Americans who can
trace their ancestry to one or more of the 20-25,000 Puritans who came to this country
during the Great Migration. In my studies over the last two years I've discovered,
by rough count, about 30 ancestors who were Puritan emigrants, and many of them
involved in the fascinating beginnings of this country in New England.
One of the reasons I invested in a computer was to use it to organize
the papers and findings of my Great Aunt 'Bessie', a woman I was always scared of
as a youth, but who did a lot of study on the origins of her Mott name and left
me a starting point for further research.
Putting these ancestors into the historical context of their time is
the most interest I get out of these studies, and so I have sought to document as
much as possible, and to read and search the local histories of the places they
came to and lived in. Besides Puritans I've discovered German Palatine emigrants
to the Hudson River Valley who almost starved to death their first winter here in
1710, four of my ancestors who fought in the American Revolution, one who set up
the first 'fulling-mill' in America in 1643 before the British made it illegal to
'do' textiles in the colonies, and two who were in the Civil war, one a surgeon.
Perhaps there were more, for the search goes on, and there are many limbs of my
family tree that I just haven't seen yet. I hope you enjoy these pages.
Special interest for me:
Mail me if you are interested in these places, and/or people:
- John Mott, the Revolutionary war patriot.
See the page on John Mott of New Jersey
in the Revolution.
- His father, Ebenezer, whose origins
have been speculated on by many people.
- Early Martha's Vineyard: Governor Thomas
Mayhew, his daughter Hannah, John Pease, and
- James Spicer - For too many years very
vague information about him that was clarified by the research of my cousin in England,
Nigel Gale, who also added a few generations before James.
- Mary Wager - I'm especially interested
in contacting anyone about the Wager name.
- The Palatine immigration to the Hudson River Valley - if you're interested in this,
let me know, and see my link to it with Conrad
- The DuBois Family - Some say that Chretien DuBois was descended from Charlemagne.....The
last DuBois in my line was Charity DuBois,
my Great, Great Grandmother.
- Medad Porter, Charity's husband - I
know nothing of the Porter families, but suspect that there is more out there.
- Willem Traphagen, the fiery Dutchman
who help found a town in 1661 only to get kicked out 4 years later.
- Southampton, Long Island: One of my ancestors,
Thomas Sayre, was one of the founders. There's a neat biography (if I do say
so myself) with a good story of some early Puritan colonists who had little regard
for the Dutch in and around New Amsterdam.
Special thanks to:
- I'm indebted to the Commonwealth War
Graves Comminssion in Marblehead, England for providing me with information
about the three brothers, 2nd Lieut. John Frederic Johnson, Private Alec Cuthbert
Johnson, and Private Alfred Andrew Johnson, to whom these pages are dedicated. They
were three sons of my great Aunt, Kate Spicer Johnson. May they rest in peace.
- I'd like to thank the folks at the Newberry Library in Chicago. Special thanks to
Anne and Cynthia who run the Interlibrary Loan at Indiana University Northwest for
getting me so many sources after I've located them in far flung libraries whose
catalogs I accessed right here from home on the internet. Also thanks to Frank Leister
at Leister Productions for writing the "Rolls-Royce" (MacUsers Magazine) of genealogy
software programs. While I don't use his program any more, it made getting into
organizing easy and fun.
- As an added note, I put these pages on the internet first back in 1995. Over the
years I've been more than delighted to make contact with distant cousins, and not
so distant cousins, including an 11th cousin in Scotland as well as a second cousin
in England who helped wonderfully in adding a couple of generations to my Spicer
ancestry. To all the cousins out there: THANKS