If you suspect you have pilgrim ancestors, consult the excellent work of Eugene Aubrey Stratton, FASG and former Historian General of the General Society of Mayflower Descendants published by Ancestry in PLYMOUTH COLONY: Its History and People 1620-1691. More than a list of names, this book paints vivid descriptions of the daily life experiences of these hardy souls first to settle New England.
An interesting chapter titled "Everyday Life and Manners" describes Plymouth as a group of farm communities. Several pages explain the station in life of fishermen, coopers, wheelwrights, yoeman, husbandmen, merchants, innkeepers, goodies, and so forth. Note the photographs of 'interpreters' at the Plimouth Plantation assuming the roles, wearing the costumes and speaking the old English dialect of people known to have lived there in 1627.
Evaluate the reliability of evidence through scholarly discussions of extant primary sources and transcriptions of other documents including:
An extensive bibliography broadens the scope of considered sources. Quoting from page 405, Appendix C regarding Bradford's Mayflower Passenger List:
Concerning your personal research, it is not enough to point to a pilgrim with the same last name and assume descendancy. Prove your ancestry starting with your own parents, and working backwards. Collect documents such as birth, marriage and christening records. Expand your collection of evidence through wills, land records and military records, etc.
Once each generation is documented, and you prove your pilgrim connection, you can elect to join the following lineage societies:
Plymouth Colony: It's History
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© 1995-2007 Pat Richley
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