The skipped generation

Alicia Crane WilliamsThree more sketches (16 pages) in the Early New England Families Study Project have just been posted – John Carter of Woburn; Samuel Maverick of Noddles Island, Boston, Maine, New York, etc.; and his wife Amyas (Cole) (Thomson) Maverick.

John Carter is the first example in the Early New England Families Study Project of a second-generation New Englander who arrived with his parents during the “second,” unpublished, half of the Great Migration. This results in the anomaly that John Carter’s sketch is published before his father’s, which might confuse researchers assuming that the two projects are seamlessly synced.

The Great Migration Study Project was started over twenty-five years ago by Robert Charles Anderson and has the goal of publishing sketches on families arranged chronologically by the years they arrived in New England between 1620 and 1640. So far, immigrants who came between 1620 and 1635 have been treated in ten volumes of Great Migration books, but immigrants from 1636 through 1640 have not. Fortunately for us, Bob’s Great Migration Directory provides the list of all individuals who fall under the umbrella of that project whether they have been treated or not.

The Early New England Families Study Project, started just three years ago, approaches those heads of families who are not under the Great Migration umbrella, but it uses the year of marriage for its chronological arrangement. Up to this point, individuals who have been treated in Early New England Families have all been second-generation children of parents who immigrated to New England during the Great Migration and who have had their sketches published in that series. With John Carter we begin to encounter individuals whose parents have not yet been treated by Great Migration and who, at least for now, represent a “skipped” generation.

From my point of view that is a problem because I don’t have the Great Migration sketches to give me a head start (yes, I am spoiled). It is also an inconvenience to everyone waiting for their Great Migration ancestors’ sketches, but considering the massive number of families involved in both projects (everyone in New England in the seventeenth century), we just have to be grateful for what has been done.

So here’s an idea on how to deal with that skipped generation awaiting their Great Migration sketches – do them yourselves. At least give it a try. You might like it, and it’s better than standing on one foot for twenty-five more years!

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