Letter to the Editor

Thanksgiving ships

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Dear Editor,

Thanksgiving is a time for turkey, but I'm thinking about ships and more ships.

The "Mayflower" and Pilgrim separatists landed at Cape Cod in November 1620. They explored the coastline of Massachusetts and established the Plymouth Colony there in December 1620.

Nov. 9, 1621, the "Fortune" reached the Plymouth settlement. This was a much smaller ship than the "Mayflower." It had 31 passengers and several crew members. My ancestor, John Adams from Barton, St. David (Wales" England, was on it. He was a relative of John Adams, the second U.S. president.

The "Anne" and "Little James" docked at Plymouth in Unly 1623. Ellenor (Ellen) Worden Newton was on board the "Anne." She married John Adams a short while later.

John and Ellen obtained land at Scituate, Mass., where he died in 1633. They were the apprentice of James, born in 1624, John Jr., born in 1625 and Susanna (Susan) born in 1626. Kenelm Winslow, a brother of Edward Winslow, an original Plymouth settler, married Ellen in 1633. (He was a master carpenter.)

My Hancock ancestors were Puritans from Exeter Devonshire, England (Wales). Thomas Hancock Jr. was born in 1605 to Thomas Hancock Sr. and Joan Gorford. He was part owner fo a merchant ship know as the "William and George." He made several voyages to Boston (the Massachusetts Bay colony) with goods and passengers.

Thomas Hancock Jr. died in the West Indies in 1655 while defending American trading interests from Spain. His son, Thomas Hancock III, born in 1645 and a grandson, John Hancock, born 1688, sailed merchant ships along the Connecticut River for 40 miles.

Helen Ruth (Hancock) Arnold,

Trenton, Nebraska

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