You're working on an application to the General Society of Mayflower Descendants ("Mayflower Society"). Someone asks if you've checked the "Silver Books" yet. What do they mean? The "Silver Books" is a term used to describe a series of publications called "Mayflower Families through Five Generations." Each publication - which has a silver cover -… Continue reading What’s a “Silver Book”?
As you're preparing a lineage society application, you may discover some of your ancestor's records are written in a non-English language. Because of the settlement patterns of the United States in the 18th and 19th century, French, German, and Spanish commonly appear in records. That usually raises a question: do I need to have these… Continue reading Do I need to have documents translated for my lineage society application?
Don't worry, you're not the first one to wonder! Your grandmother or sibling has joined one society, and you'd like to join another - using their paperwork. Is it possible? Maybe. First of all, review the qualifying ancestor guidelines for the society you'd like to join and the society your family member joined. Is there… Continue reading Can the same person be a qualifying ancestor for multiple societies?
The simple answer: yes. If your family was from an area that was popular with the New England "planters" , Revolutionary War era Loyalists, or economic "Late Loyalists," they may have roots in colonial Massachusetts. If you want to identify Mayflower line ancestors, focus on using established techniques for researching planters, loyalists, or late loyalists.… Continue reading I have Canadian roots. Might I have Mayflower ancestors?
The General Society of Mayflower Descendants ("Mayflower Society") is made up of 54 member societies. To start your application, you need to begin by choosing the society to which you would like to apply. Some applicants choose a society based on emotional ties to an area. They may have grown up there, or it may… Continue reading How do I start my application to the General Society of Mayflower Descendants?
Think you have Mayflower ancestors but aren't ready to delve into the research yourself? There are three good options to help you check the line. If you apply for Mayflower Lineage Match, the General Society of Mayflower Descendants will check to see what portion of the line has been documented in a previous application. There… Continue reading Is there an easy way to check my Mayflower line?
Lineage society applications sometimes contain research goldmines. There's the attestation from someone that died decades ago or the Bible family record that's gone missing. The old Mayflower Society applications are no different. But how do you access them? FamilySearch and the New England Historic Genealogical Society have announced a partnership to digitize General Society of… Continue reading Common Mayflower Society Questions: Can I access old applications to see what’s on file already?
All lineage societies require some documentation of births, deaths, and marriages (if they happened). In most cases, the society requires only the record of the marriage that produced the child. The Mayflower Society is a bit different : in general, you will be asked to provide all marriage records for the "line carrier." Who is… Continue reading Common Mayflower Society Questions: What marriage records do I need to provide?
The General Society of Mayflower Descendants is made up of 53 member societies. There is a member society for each of the 50 states, one for Washington D.C., one for Canada, and one for Europe. Prospective members are required to apply through the member society. Thankfully, the GSMD keeps a list of member society contact… Continue reading Common Mayflower Society Questions: Who do I contact to start my application?
The 400th anniversary of the landing of the Mayflower is 2020, and many are celebrating with Mayflower Society membership. Is it too late to get a 2020 number if you apply now? Maybe. Covid-19 has pushed processing dates back. As of early June 2020, application review time was averaging about 7 months. That may speed… Continue reading Common Mayflower Society Questions: Is it too late to get a 2020 number?