I have to put down my research on my family in the American Revolution for the next few months. My friends and I are planning a trip to Boston and the New England Historic Genealogical Society in May and my ancestors were only in New England from 1620-1700 (at least as far as I know…). I am both excited and a little bit daunted about going into this new area of the early settlers of America with the Mayflower, Puritans and other early immigrants. I wonder how much there really is left to discover about these ancestors. Genealogists and historians have been ruffling through the documents from this time period for hundreds of years. How much is there really left for me to uncover?
On the other hand it is an opportunity to find out what has been published and amended. I have discovered that there are more than a few inaccurate genealogies out there for this time period published in the late 1800‘s and early 1900‘s and modern genealogists have been trying to clean up the erroneous information. Also, given my understanding of the period is limited to an almost archetypal knowledge of the Pilgrims, it gives me the chance to update my education by studying their motivations and the complexity of these early settlements.
I first found out about my earlier family lines through the Hunt’s and Halloway’s of New York through these wonderfully researched books for the early colonists of New York called Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York : an historical and genealogical study of all the 18th century settlers in the patent by Frank J. Doherty. I read about the Thomas Hunt and Joseph Holloway families who had immigrated to Massachusetts from England by 1637 and married into families who were part of The Great Migration 1620-1635. The other resource I have been using to get me started are the The Great Migration Begins books by Robert Charles Anderson (part of the The Great Migration Study Project.)
It’s early on in the research and I know there is much to discover and validate. But I am already hooked by Rev. Joseph Hull. What’s not to love about a Puritan that keeps getting kicked out of other towns and churches by other Puritans?