Collecting published accounts

Alicia Crane WilliamsThis may turn out like watching sausage being made or paint dry, but let’s walk through the process of creating an Early New England Families Study Project entry.

We start with the entry from Torrey’s New England Marriages Prior to 1700:

NEWTON, Richard (–1701) & Anne/Hannah? [LOKER/ RIDDLESDALE] (ca 1616–1697); by 1641; Sudbury {Stevens-Miller 132, 138, 143; Marston-Weaver 47; Warner-Harrington 414, 471; Reg. 49:341; Bullard Anc. 153; Chaffee (1911) 134; Holman Ms: Loker 3; Moore Anc. 399; Framingham Hist. 340, 342?; Marlboro Hist. 421; Bent Anc. 27; Newton (#4) 17-18; Bigelow-Howe 94; Leonard (#2) 49; Cutler 2:5; Morris-Flynt 56; Tingley-Meyers 92}

My first step is to locate as many of these sources as possible and begin a comparative analysis of what has already been published. I use the 2011 edition of Torrey’s Marriages, which gives the bibliography or Source List in Volume 3, pages 1739–1830. If you access the Torrey database on, however, you will need to find those pages using a manual search – go to the Database Search page and Advanced Search, choose Category “vital records,” and Database “Torrey’s New England Marriages.”  Enter the name you are researching and the database will take you to an image of that page from the book. For Richard Newton it will be Volume 2, page 1090, as shown in the boxes at the top of the page. To access the Source List, enter Volume 3, page 1739, which will take you to the first page of the alphabetically arranged list. You will then have to do a little guessing about which subsequent page has the source you are looking for, but it shouldn’t take too long to narrow it down. You may wish to print the Source List pages for future reference.

Stevens-Miller 132, 138, 143: This is an “all-my-ancestors” compilation by the highly regarded genealogist Mary Lovering Holman entitled Ancestry of Col. John Harrington Stevens and His Wife Frances Helen Miller, published in 1948. The only place that I have located it online is I find that pages 138–41 are the treatment on “The Newton Line,” in this case Ricahrd1 Newton and his daughter Mary. Pages 142–43 are “The Loker alias Riddlesdale Line,” and page 132 is the family of Jonathan Johnson who married Mary Newton.  These accounts are detailed, including a transcription of Richard Newton’s will and the birth, marriage, and deaths of his children and grandchildren. A good start for organization, but unfortunately, except for a handful of footnotes, Mrs. Holman did not cite her sources.

Continued here.

Alicia Crane Williams

About Alicia Crane Williams

Alicia Crane Williams, FASG, Lead Genealogist of Early Families of New England Study Project, has compiled and edited numerous important genealogical publications including The Mayflower Descendant and the Alden Family “Silver Book” Five Generations project of the Mayflower Society. Most recently, she is the author of the 2017 edition of The Babson Genealogy, 1606-2017, Descendants of Thomas and Isabel Babson who first arrived in Salem, Massachusetts, in 1637. Alicia has served as Historian of the Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants, Assistant Historian General at the General Society of Mayflower Descendants, and as Genealogist of the Alden Kindred of America. She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut and a master’s degree in History from Northeastern University.View all posts by Alicia Crane Williams