Saturday, August 29, 2015

Historian Nathaniel Morton - 52 Ancestors #35

Nathaniel Morton is my 11th great-grandfather. He came to Plymouth 
Colony in 1623, on the Anne, with his parents, George & Juliana (Carpenter) Morton. His parents were married in Leiden, Holland in 1612 and it is most likely that he was born there. 

Nathaniel's father died when Nathaniel was only eleven. He was taken in by his uncle, Governor William Bradford. As a result, Nathaniel received an excellent education and became the Secretary of Plymouth Colony for forty years (1645-1685). He was also the secretary of the United Colonies of New England. 

The Guest Commentary portion of the Early Families of New England sketch on Nathaniel Morton includes this information that was very interesting for me. Nathaniel Morton wrote an account of the Plymouth Colony history that expands on and extends William Bradford's manuscript, Of Plymouth Plantation." Morton's work is called New-Englands Memoriall and was published in 1669. This is the only source of signers of the Mayflower Compact and "notes the eight Native Leaders who added their names to the treaty with Massasoit in September, 1621 - but makes no mention of the famous First Thanksgiving." James W. Baker, a Plymouth historian calls this work "the first historical work to be printed in the English North American colonies." (emphasis added)

How cool is that? One of my ancestors authored the first historical work printed in British North America! 

My Line:
Nathaniel Morton
Mercy Morton
Eleazer Dunham
Mercy Dunham
Mary Kempton
Rebecca Burbank 
Hannah Keene
Timothy Cox
Christiana Cox
Francis Llewellyn Cotton
Ray Everett Cotton
Fern Lyndell Cotton - my grandmother

Early Families of New England is a wonderful database available from the New England Historic Genealogical Society. It extends beyond the immigrants covered in the Great Migration series but with the same level of research and detail. 

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