George Joseph ALDEN
Mayflower Signature 
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John ALDEN, Sr
(Abt 1598-1687)


Family Links

Priscilla MULLINS

John ALDEN, Sr 1

  • Born: Abt 1598-1599, Harwich, Essex, England
  • Married: 12 May 1622, Plymouth, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
  • Died: 22 Sep 1687, Duxbury, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
  • Buried: 22 Sep 1687, Duxbury, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA

   Ancestral File Number: 1HKM-FN. User ID: 2350.

   General Notes:

Pilgrim, Asst Governor Plymouth 1633-39, 1651-86, Treasurer 1656-58.

"Ohio's First School Teacher- Bathsheba Rouse"
by Lucy COLE Fleming
"...John Rouse, the father of Bathsheba migrated with his family to Marietta. Before the Revolutionary War he had made his living on a whaling fleet out of New Bedford, Massachusetts. His great grandfather had come from England. Through his mother John Rouse was descended from that hero of history and romance- Miles Standish. Alexander Standish, son of the famous Miles, married Sarah Alden, daughter of John and Priscilla Alen. Their daughter Lorah Standish, became the great grandmother of Bathsheba Rouse. Thus the pioneer school mistress of Ohio was descended from two of the first families of America..."

"Saints and Strangers- Being the Lives of the Pilgrim Fathers and their Families with their Friends and Foes and an Account of their Posthumous Wanderings in Limbo, Their Final Resurrection and Rise to Glory and the Strange Pilgrimages of Plymouth Rock" George F Willison, Reynal & Hitchcock NY 1945:
p130: "By an ironic twist of fate, it is among the 'strangers' and not 'ye saincts' that one finds the three Pilgrims who, thanks to Longfellow, have enjoyed the greatest posthumous fame- Myles Standish, John Alden, and Priscilla Mullins. (For the passengers on the 'Mayflower', see Appendix A, which, with Appendix B, constitutes a sort of 'dramatis personae'.)...
"Pricilla's future husband, John Alden, was a 'hopfull yonge man' of twenty from Harwich, Essex. His children remembered him as tall, blond, and very powerful in physique, one of the strongest men in Plymouth, qualities very useful in a hired man, as the company no doubt recognized in signing him up as such under a contract obliging him to remain in the colony for a year, at the end of which time he was free to go or stay as he chose. A cooper by trade, he was now carefully tending the Pilgrims' precious barrels of beer, plain water, and 'strong water', which took up much space in the hold. But the Pilgrims had no such supply as that enjoyed by the Puritans who set sail for Massachusetts Bay ten years later on the good ship 'Arbella', which carried 10,000 gallons of wine, fourteen tons of fresh water, and forty-two tons of beer. Still, Alden had plenty to do keeping the barrels tight andsampling them occasionally to see that air was not getting in to spoil the contents..."
p442: "Hired Hands- Alden, John (1599-1686)- cooper or Harwich, Essex 'a hopfull yong man' Married c1622 to Priscilla Mullins (see Strangers above); removed to Duxbury c 1632; Asst Governor 1633-39, 1651-86, and probably 1631-32; arrested at Boston for murder 1634; opposes relgious toeration 1646; leader in Quaker and Baptist persecutions 1657; treasurer 1656-58; being 'low in his estate' branted L10 in consideration of his public services 1660."

Mayflower Web Pages, Caleb Johnson, 1998
John Alden
BORN: c1598-1599, England (possibly Harwich, Essex, England)
DIED: 12 September 1687, Duxbury, Massachusetts
MARRIED: Priscilla Mullins, c1623, Plymouth, daughter of William and Alice (---) Mullins
Name- Birth; Death; Marriage
Elizabeth- cir 1623-1625, Plymouth; 31 May 1717, Little Compton, RI; William Pabodie, 26 December 1644, Duxbury
John- cir 1626, Plymouth; 14 March 1701-2, Boston; Elizabeth (Phillips) Everill, 1 April 1660, Boston
Joseph- aft. 22 May 1627; 8 February 1696-7, Bridgewater; Mary Simmons
Sarah- aft 22 May 1627; bef 13 June 1688; Alexander Standish
Jonathan- cir 1632; 14 February 1696-7, Duxbury; Abigail Hallett, 10 December 1672, Duxbury
Ruth- unknown; 12 October 1674, Braintree; John Bass, 12 May 1657, Braintree
Rebecca- bef 1649; aft 13 June 1688; Thomas Delano, bef 30 October 1667
Mary- unknown; aft 13 June 1688; unmarried
Priscilla- unknown; aft 13 June 1688; unmarried
David- cir 1646; between 5 June 1718 and 1 April 1719; Mary Southworth
Extensive research has been done into the ancestry of John Alden, but nothing has conclusively been found. There are two major theories that have been presented over the years:
Charles Edward Banks, in his book The English Ancestry and Homes of the Pilgrim Fathers, 1929, puts forward a theory that John is the son of George Alden and Jane (---) and grandson of Richard and Avys Alden of Southampton, England. Since Bradford says John Alden was hired in Southampton, this would be a logical place to start looking for Aldens. No other supporting evidence has been found, and it has been noted by many researchers that the names George, Richard, and Avys do not occur anywhere in John Alden's family. Naming children after parents and grandparents was an extremely common practice in the seventeenth century, and the absence of such a name is nearly enough evidence to disprove this theory.
The currently popular theory is that John Alden came from Harwich, Essex, England. There was a sea-faring Alden family living there, who were related by marriage to Christopher Jones, captain of the Mayflower. It has been suggested John Alden may be the son of John Alden and Elizabeth Daye, but this is not fully proven either.
Two commemorative broadsides (elegy poems) survive from John Alden's 1687 death. The first broadside is by an unknown author, and the second broadside was written by John Cotton.
William Bradford wrote, in his history Of Plymouth Plantation: "John Alden was hired for a cooper [barrel maker] at Southampton where the ship [Mayflower] victualed, and being a hopeful young man was much desired but left to his own liking to go or stay when he came here; but he stayed and married here." and later wrote "John Alden married Priscilla, Mr. Mullin's daughter, and had issue by her as is before related."
John Alden was an assistant for the Plymouth colony for many years, and was deputy governor for two years. His marriage to Priscilla Mullins was the subject of the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow poem, "The Courtship of Myles Standish", which although a classic has little factual basis. John and Priscilla were among the founders of the town of Duxbury.
In 1634, John Alden was on the Kennebec River assisting in the forceful removal of John Hocking who was illegally fishing and trading on land that had been granted to the Pilgrims. Hockings refused to leave, and when the party arrived at his ship by canoe to board and remove him, he shot and killed Moses Talbot. In return, Hockings was shot and killed. The Massachusetts Bay Colony took matters into its own hands, and arrested John Alden (even though he was not the one who fired the shot). Myles Standish was sent by Governor Bradford to obtain Alden's release, which he successfully did.
In his later years, John Alden was on many juries, including even a witch trial--though in Plymouth's case, the jury found the accuser guilty of libel and the alleged witch was allowed to go free. Plymouth Colony only had two witch trials during its history, and in both cases the accuser was found guilty and punished.
John and Priscilla Alden probably have the largest number of descendants of any Mayflower passenger, but with stiff competition from Richard Warren and John Howland. They are ancestors to Presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams, poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and Vice President Dan Quayle.
John Alden's House built in 1653 still stands, and tours are given by the Alden Kindred of America. For more information, check out the Alden Kindred web page.
Alicia Crane Williams, ""John Alden: Theories on English Ancestry", Mayflower Descendant 39:111-122; 40:133-136
Alicia Crane Williams, Families of Pilgrims: John Alden and William Mullins (Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants, 1986).
Robert C. Anderson, The Great Migration Begins, 1:21-26 (Boston: New England Historical and Genealogical Society, 1995).
William Bradford, Of Plymouth Plantation, ed. Samuel Morison (New York: Random House, 1952).
Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History and Its People, 1620-1691 (Ancestor Publishers: Salt Lake City, 1986).
Harry Hollingsworth, "John Alden--Beer Brewer of Windsor?", The American Genealogist 53(1977):235-240.

Sarah SAMPSON dau Abraham SAMPSON and Lorah STANDISH grandau Alexander STANDISH and Sarah ALDEN greatgrandau Myles STANDISH and John ALDEN mar John ROUSE.
ID: I02543 Name: JOHN ALDEN Sex: M Birth: 1599 in Harwich, Sussex/ Essex, England Death: 12 SEP 1687 in Duxbury, MA Reference Number: 2543
Father: THOMAS ALDEN b: ABT. 1575 in England
Mother: ISOBEL MdNmUnk ALDEN b: ABT. 1580 in England
Marriage 1 PRISCILLA MULLINS b: 1602 in Dorking, Surrey, England
Sarah ALDEN b: ABT. 1630 in Plymouth Colony, MA
Marriage 2 PRISCILLA MULLINS b: 1602 in Dorking, Surrey, England
Married: 1622 in Plymouth Colony, MA
Elizabeth ALDEN b: 1622 in Plymouth Colony, Plymouth, MA
John ALDEN b: 1624
Joseph ALDEN b: 1626
Sarah ALDEN b: ABT. 1630 in Plymouth Colony, MA
Ruth ALDEN b: 1631 in Duxbury, MA
Zachariah ALDEN b: ABT. 1633
Jonathan ALDEN b: ABT. 1635 in Duxbury, MA
Rebecca ALDEN b: ABT. 1642 in 'of Duxbury', Plymouth Colony, MA
MARY ALDEN b: 1643 in Duxbury, MA
David ALDEN b: 1646 in Plymouth Colony, Plymouth, MA
Priscilla ALDEN b: ABT. 1648

Ancestral File Ver 4.19 1HKM-FN Born Southampton Hampshire England (83-1682).


1. Immigration; 5 Aug 1620, Plymouth, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA. "Mayflower", from Leyden Holland via Southampton England.

   Marriage Information:

John married Priscilla MULLINS, daughter of William MULLINS, Sr and Alice ATWOOD, on 12 May 1622 in Plymouth, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA. (Priscilla MULLINS was born in 1601 in Dorking, Surrey, England, died on 12 Sep 1687 in Duxbury, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA and was buried about 1687-1688 in Duxbury, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA.)


1 Ancestral File Ver 4.19, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Copyright (c) 1987, June 1998, data as of 5 January 1998.

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