Friday, 27 April 2012

Just Cuz (s) Part 2: Presidents, Poets & Performers

Mayflower Descendants Again

Amateur genealogical research is often hampered by incomplete or apparently non-existent  records. Countless branches of many family trees, including my own, come to abrupt dead-ends, sometimes only a few generations back, as recent immigrants seem to have truly left their pasts behind them, perhaps deliberately.  And so it is very satisfying to have one of your branches take you into colonial New England and in particular to the Plymouth Colony which has been extraordinarily well researched and documented. 

Some have claimed that early settlers kept meticulous records tracing their genealogy in order to secure or maintain social standing within the British Empire (a notion that seems at odds with most of the settlers’ professed pursuit of egalitarian utopias). An ongoing pride in one’s ancestors’ roles in the founding of colonies and later the Revolutionary War fed the practice. Today the New England Historic Genealogical Society is one of the most prominent organizations in the field, and should you make your own connection to early New England colonists, chances are the extensive work already done will then lead you to a treasure trove of famous cousins who have already been traced to the same roots.

The most recent article (No.7) in this series looked at celebrity cousins related to my wife Jennifer Lanthier through her McDougall/Parlee bloodlines, which led in turn to the Soules of New England. This installment looks at famous relations connected to my side of the family by way of the New England heritage of my paternal Grandmother, Juanita Tupper.  Surprisingly, a handful of the personalities are common to both groups, albeit by different routes.
The Mayflower

The Mayflower brought colonists, known today as Pilgrims, to Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620.  There were 102 passengers and a crew of about 25.  Many were fleeing religious persecution, others were hired servants or farmers recruited by London merchants.  A group of 37 were members of a separatist congregation picked up from Leiden, Holland en route . The colony was the second established successfully in North America by the English after Jamestown, Virginia and it would later become the oldest continuously inhabited settlement in what was to become the United States.

During the first winter roughly half of the original passengers died. Of those that survived, three feature in the Lanthier-Rogers/Tupper family tree, each from a different contingent of the colonists.

John Alden, from Harwich, Essex, was a hired-hand, the ship’s cooper, but decided to join the settlers.  He is said to be the first person from the ship to set foot on Plymouth Rock and was the seventh signer of the Mayflower Compact, the colony’s governing document.  He served terms as assistant governor and treasurer of the colony and was a member of its council of war.

Myles Standish, from Chorley, Lancashire, was a military officer hired by the Pilgrims as a military advisor for the colony.  Standish was active in the colony administration in a number of roles including assistant governor, treasurer and agent for the colony in England. He also served as the commander of the colony’s militia from its inception until he died in 1656.

Henry Sampson (Samson), originally from Henlow, Bedfordshire, was a child of 16 when he was picked up with his aunt and uncle Ann and Edward Tilley in Leiden.  Both the Tilleys were among those who died in the first winter.

Both John Alden and Myles Standish are my 10th Great Grandfathers by way of their children Sarah Alden and Alexander Standish who married in Plymouth and produced Mercy Standish, my 8th Great Grandmother.  Henry Sampson is my 9th Great Grandfather by way of Mercy Standish marrying his son Caleb.

Rogers Lineage

Stephen Rogers (& Michael, Debbie & Greg) → Charles Dawson Rogers → Juanita May Tupper → Rufus Burpee Tupper →  Ruth Amelia Newcomb → Eleanor Pineo → Elijah Pineo → David  Pineo → Elizabeth Polly Sampson → David Sampson…

  • David Sampson       → Mercy Standish → Sarah Alden → John Alden
  • David Sampson       → Mercy Standish → Alexander Standish → Myles Standish
  • David Sampson      → Caleb Sampson → Henry Sampson
Other Descendants of Henry Sampson

Sarah Heath Palin is a former Governor of Alaska and Republican Party nominee for Vice President in 2008.

Through her father Sarah shares Henry Sampson with us as an ancestor. Through her mother, Palin can trace her heritage to four additional Mayflower passengers; John Howland, Richard Warren, Stephen Hopkins and William Brewster, and also to the sister of yet another - Sarah Soule, sister of George.  Sarah Soule is also an ancestor of my wife Jennifer Lanthier (see No. 7 in the Series).

Sarah Heath  Charles Heath →  Nellie Brandt →  May Ruddock →  Thomas Ruddock →  Rhoda Damon →  Rhoda Thayer  → Micah Thayer →  Elizabeth Sampson    Stephen Sampson →  Henry Sampson

George W. Bush was the 43rd President of the United States from 2001 to 2009 and Governor of Texas from 1995 to 2000.

George W. can claim Mayflower ancestors through both his mother and his father, George H.W. Bush, the 41st President of the United States. Through his father George W.’s Mayflower ancestors include Francis Cooke and John Howland.  Both father and son also share lineage with Sarah Soule and thus with Jennifer Lanthier. Through his mother’s family Bush shares the same ancestor with us as does Palin - Henry Sampson

George W. Bush    Barbara Pierce →  Marvin Pierce →  Scott Pierce →  Jonas Pierce →  Chloe Holbrook →  John Holbrook →  John Holbrook →  Zilpha Thayer →  Mary Sampson →  Stephen Sampson →  Henry Sampson

Other Descendants of John Alden

John Adams was the 2nd President of the United States following his two terms serving as Vice-President in George Washington’s administration.

John Quincy Adams was the 6th President of the United States and son of 2nd President John Adams.

John Quincy Adams → John Adams → John Adams → Hannah Bass → Ruth Alden → John Alden
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was a poet known mainly for his lyric poems depicting stories from mythology or legend. Among his better known works are “Paul Revere’s Ride” and “The Song of Hiawatha”.  He was one of the Fireside Poets, a group of 19th century poets from New England and was considered the most popular American poet of his day.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow    Zilpha Wadsworth  Peleg Wadsworth → Mercy Wiswall →  Priscilla Pabodie → Elizabeth Alden → John Alden
William Cullen Bryant, another of the Fireside Poets, was perhaps best known for “Thanatopsis” (meditation on death) and his book “The Ages”, a panoramic history of civilization told through verse.  He career also involved time as editor of a number of publications including half a century at the head of the New York Evening Post.

William Cullen Bryant    Sarah Snell →  Ebenezer Snell → Zachariah Snell →  Anna Alden → Jonathan Alden → John Alden
Orson Welles was an actor, director, writer and producer in theatre, radio and film. In theatre he is best remembered for Caesar (1937), a Broadway adaptation of Julius Caesar, and in radio for The War of the Worlds (1938), considered the most famous broadcast in the history of the medium. His film Citizen Kane (1941) is considered by many film scholars to be the greatest motion picture of all time.

Orson Welles    Richard Welles →  Mary Head →  Orson Head → Jonathan Head → Ruth Little →  Fobes Little → Constant Fobes →  Martha Pabodie → Elizabeth Alden → John Alden

Marilyn Monroe (her professional name) was an actress who starred in many successful films in the 1950s and 1960s and became known as a major sex symbol.

Marilyn was born Norma Jeane Mortenson with her birth certificate naming her father as Martin Edward Mortenson. Her surname was almost immediately changed to Baker, the last name of her mother’s first husband and whose name her mother still used (Monroe was her mother’s maiden name). Throughout her life Monroe maintained that Mortenson was not her father and that as a child she had been shown a photograph by her mother that she was told was of her actual father, Charles Stanley Gifford.  If this claim is true, then Marilyn joins the ranks of John Alden’s descendants.

Marilyn Monroe (Norma Jeane Baker) → Charles Stanley Gifford →  Frederick Gifford →  Charles Gifford → Lydia Tompkins → Uriah Tompkins →  Micah Tompkins → Sarah Coe → Sarah Pabodie → Elizabeth Alden → John Alden

Descendants of John Alden and Myles Standish via Sarah and Alexander

Deborah Sampson is famous as one of a small number of women who have documented military combat experience from the Revolutionary War.  In order to join the Continental Army she impersonated a man and was nearly discovered a number of times, particularly after receiving two musket balls in the thigh in a skirmish near Tarrytown, New York and needing medical attention. In this instance she fled the hospital rather than be discovered and removed one of the musket balls herself with a penknife.

She was honorably discharged at West Point in 1783.

Deborah Sampson  Jonathan Sampson → Jonathan Sampson →  Lydia Standish → Alexander Standish & Sarah Alden → Myles Standish, John Alden

Dick Van Dyke is an actor and comedian best known for the TV series The Dick Van Dyke Show and films Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Bye Bye Birdie. 

Dick Van Dyke    Hazel McCord  → Charles McCord →  Susan Child → David Lorenzo Child → Susannah Tinkham → Isaiah Tinkham → Sarah Soule → Zachariah Soule → Sarah Standish →
Alexander Standish & Sarah Alden → Myles Standish, John Alden
Dan Quayle was the 44th Vice President of the United States, serving under President George H.W. Bush.

Dan Quayle    James Quayle →  Marie Cline →  Adelia Burras →  Oscar Burras → Sally Standish → Peleg Standish →  Zachariah Standish → Zachariah Standish →  Ebenezer Standish → Alexander Standish & Sarah Alden → Myles Standish, John Alden

Summary of Relationships to Me (Steve Rogers):

Henry Sampson                                    9th Great Grandfather
John Alden                                           10th Great Grandfather
Myles Standish                                     10th Great Grandfather
Deborah Sampson                                3th Cousin 7x Removed
John Adams                                         3th Cousin 8x Removed
John Quincy Adams                             4th Cousin 7x Removed
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow              5th Cousin 6x Removed
William Cullen Bryant                           5th Cousin 6x Removed
Sarah Palin                                           9th Cousin 1x Removed
Dick Van Dyke                                    9th Cousin 1x Removed
Dan Quayle                                          9th Cousin 1x Removed
Orson Welles                                       9th Cousin 2x Removed
Marilyn Monroe                                   9th Cousin 2x Removed
George W. Bush                                   10th Cousin

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