And thank you Amos Dresser, for being a Cooke as well as an Allerton, Hopkins, and Warren. I cannot resist noticing that he literally was a sharp dresser and he, along with many of the other men on this site, prove the adage that "Bow ties are cool."
I got a letter and brochure from a family? company? in Dorset, England advertising their "recently launched venture" during this, the run-up to the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower landing in 2020. They own an old Georgian-era rectory (very large) in Symondsbury, and are offering 4 nights' accommodations with breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus two full-day tours and one half-day tour, plus a lecture by a local scholar. The tours are mix-and-match, I believe, but their brochure mentions Plymouth, Weymouth, Dorchester, Shaftesbury, Bridport, Wiltshire, Dorset, Devon, and "cheddar caves." (Cheddar cheese is from England.) Many of the immigrants from Old England to New England in the next couple of decades were from this part of England (the southwestern peninsular part.) It sounds like great fun. If you would like more info their web site is www.AngloNewEngland.co.uk - and if you go, please send us some pictures!
I ran across a blog focusing on Native American beadwork while looking for background info on a late 19th century photo of Charlotte and Melinda Mitchell reprinted in Old Dartmouth Historical Sketches, No. 51 (New Bedford: Old Dartmouth Historical Society, 1921), p. 30, digitized by the Library of Congress. Charlotte, Melinda, brother Alonzo, sister Emma, and their mother Zerviah Gould Mitchell, as it turned out, claimed a homestead at Betty's Neck, near Middleborough, MA, as part of their ancestral heritage. Like many people they made a living by a mix of farming, bartering, and handcrafts that could be sold for cash. (Ask me about my farmer/sieve-maker ancestors in Bristol County.) The article "Historic Iroquois and Abenaki Beadwork" was published by Gerry Biron on Iroquoisbeadwork.blogspot.com and features a dozen photos of people in the story, some architectural photos, two helpful maps, and numerous pictures of handicraft old and new. The photos are wonderfully sharp (unlike mine), as they come from a private collection, and there are end notes for those interested in more about the subject. Click on the article title to go directly to that blogpost and the images. I recommend this for a look at the lives of these Massachusetts residents. You can find vital records, if you are related to them, on the NEHGS site, too.
This weekend is their annual, in-person board meeting, so to speak. At least part of the board meets at times by phone. The triennial meetings at Plymouth, MA are open to one and all, but the other two years they are not. Hopefully a pleasant, informative, and productive time was had by all in Mystic, CT but let's also hope that they did not vote to digitize our records via ancestry.com. I heard rumblings of that earlier this year and would urge a "no" vote for reasons they are welcome to ask me about. Separation of church and state would be one. How would you like it if the pope came to your town and digitized 400 years of its records, including those of your family? And not being subject to sunshine laws, how does one make the pope do what you've agreed on, no more and no less? They are also trying out something new that should be of help to volunteers who live thousands of miles from New England. They offered a special day of training and supposedly were going to videotape it and make it available to those who cannot attend remote meetings, which I would guess is the majority of their volunteers. I do not know if they are going to offer different training for different officers each year or what. When the next Mayflower Quarterly comes out (I am a member and receive one in the mail) I will pass along any news of interest or concern.
Please stop me if I invent someone out of whole cloth. On both postings for Cooke and Warren descendant Daniel Tucker Devoll, I called him William. I have fixed that on those pages and in the descendants index. My apologies, Daniel!
There are repositories that contain records of business people of long ago and they can be a source of proof for your missing link. They are not necessarily in Massachusetts, either. One example is the Winterthur Museum near Wilmington, DE, which I visited this week, looking through the Joseph Downs Collection of Manuscripts and Printed Ephemera. It contained the account records of small businesses in Bristol County, ME in the late 1700s and early 1800s, primarily craftsmen, since the museum collects craft items made for American homes over the past 350 years. Some records were logs kept by men who did odd jobs in a certain line of work, most commonly carpentry. They would write that they made a coffin for so-and-so's husband, wife, or child; or were paid in shoes that the customer made for a family member. Sometimes the items were picked up by a spouse, parent, or child and about half the time the errand-runner was named. I did find my Holmes ancestor (as "Hombs") but nothing to link him to the woman I believe to be his daughter.
Dr. Maura Mackowski is an Arizona research historian who enjoys the challenge of looking for Mayflower descendants, hers and anyone else's.
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