Editorial

NEHGR Vol. 174, Spring 2020

In keeping with the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower, our lead article is Mayflower and Other Pilgrims from Kent in Leiden in the Early 1600s. Author Michael R. Paulick describes the vicissitudes of the Pilgrims and gives new information. He provides biographical sketches for four of the leading Pilgrims in Kent and then Leiden, two of whom went on to New England (Cushman and Masterson), and two of whom remained in Leiden but later returned to England (Brewer and Ellis). An appendix lists these Pilgrims with Leiden references and year of arrival in Leiden. All were from Kent or had lived in Kent, and most had lived in Sandwich, Kent.

In Michael1 Powell of Dedham and Boston, Massachusetts: An Update, Randy A. West shows that Michael Powell married first in 1631 Joan Sond and had two children before she died in 1635. He married in 1635 or 1636 his previously known wife, Abigail Beadle, with whom he had six children. One clue to the existence of the first marriage was the fact that Abigail named her four daughters in her 1676/7 will but did not mention her living stepdaughter.

For years Gale Ion Harris has specialized in Harris families of Massachusetts and Connecticut. His most recent offering is on the descendants of George1 Harris of Concord, Massachusetts, who was there by 1669. Most descendants stayed in or near Concord, particularly in Lancaster and Acton.

Tracing the Ancestry of Elizabeth Lazell (Allen) Trowbridge to Buckfield, Maine, and Carver, Massachusetts, is the result of Lynn Trowbridge’s quest to identify her husband’s ancestor, about whom the family knew only that she was from Maine and that her father’s name was Thomas Allen. Starting with the federal census, the author identified two likely families in Maine, and soon settled on the family of Thomas and Nancy (Cole) Allen. The unusual aspect of their family is that they had two daughters named Elizabeth who survived to adulthood. One was Elizabeth Lazell Allen, named for her mother’s sister. The other was Elizabeth Dunham Allen, named for her maternal grandmother.

The first wife of George1 Parkhurst of Watertown, Massachusetts, was Phebe Leete, baptized in 1585. Printed sources name her Leete grandmother as Ellen Burgoyne, but in Leete Clues, John Anderson Brayton shows that no reliable evidence has been found to identify her.

Samuel Smith and Elizabeth Smith were married in Whatfield, Suffolk, in 1624 and had children baptized there and in the adjacent parish of Hadleigh until they came to New England in 1634. Despite their common surname, Myrtle Stevens Hyde has found much of the ancestry of both spouses. Samuel’s ancestry was presented in the Fall 2019 Register. The companion article begins in this issue as The English Ancestry of Elizabeth Smith, Whose Husband was Samuel1 Smith of Hadley, Massachusetts. Elizabeth’s patrilineal line goes back to the early fifteenth century, thanks to a series of wills, especially the 1586 will and monumental inscription of a wealthy Smith relative naming his ancestral male line.

By proving that The First Wife of Ezra Dibble (1697–1739) Was Rebecca Starr, Not Hannah Starr, author Anne Selene Bennett has corrected the 1879 Starr genealogy and provided a documented account of this couple and their children. The families were of Danbury, Connecticut, where most of the records do not survive.

In Mary Davis, Daughter of Ichabod2 Davis (William1) of Roxbury, Massachusetts, and Wife of William Carter of Dudley, Massachusetts, author Patricia Sezna Haggerty presents the evidence that Mary (Davis) Carter was the daughter of Ichabod2 Davis, despite well-regarded published sources that show Ichabod’s daughter Mary having married someone else. The author then presents a complete account of Ichabod’s eight children and their children, followed by two appendixes supporting the argument that the wife of Ichabod was Bethiah Pepper, daughter of Joseph and Mary (May) Pepper.

Infrequently the Register publishes an article not pertaining to New England or New York. In The English Origins of Samuel and Maximilian Boush of Norfolk, Virginia, author Travis Dodge Miscia identified this Boush family in and around London, but was not able to take them further back until he discovered an article about merchant’s tokens, with the token of Maximilian Boush inscribed “In Plymouth 1658” cited as an example. The author then found the family in the parish registers of Plymouth, Devon.

We continue The Family and American Descendants of Deacon Edward Collins of Cambridge, Medford, and Charlestown, Massachusetts, by James Wade Ferris Collins. This installment presents the children and grandchildren of Edward’s children, Sybil and Samuel, most of whom moved to Middletown, Connecticut, or elsewhere in Connecticut. The author notes the frequent marriages and connections between Collins descendants.


The Register depends on many people, especially associate editor Helen Ullmann. She reviews all submissions and edits accepted articles, often doing further research for those articles.

Gary Boyd Roberts, Jenifer Kahn Bakkala, and Julie Helen Otto review all the articles for each issue. Cliff Stott does research for many of our English origin articles. Julie Helen Otto produces the index to the Register each year. Leslie Weston prepares the InDesign version of the Register.

Helen and I rely on the Register’s consulting editors: Bob Anderson, Cherry Bamberg, Drew Bartley, Chris Child, David Dearborn, David Greene, Charles Hansen, Gale Harris, David Lambert, Rhonda McClure, Gary Boyd Roberts, George Sanborn, Bart Saxbe, Scott Steward, and Cliff Stott.

Colleagues at NEHGS are always supportive in various ways, especially Sharon Inglis, Ellen Maxwell, Cécile Engeln, Lynn Betlock, Ryan Woods, and Brenton Simons. Genealogists on the Seventh Floor of the library answer my infrequent phone queries.

Helen and I appreciate the authors who send us articles and additions & corrections. It is reassuring to know that the Register has many careful readers!

– Henry B. Hoff