Genealogical and family history research can be a very satisfying activity. The thrill of discovering the names and histories of your ancestors is like no other experience. Part of what makes genealogical research so exciting is that, with the advent of modern information technologies, it has become easier than ever before. Computers, the internet, and various information storage and retrieval technologies have significantly increased the efficiency of doing research. While modern technological tools greatly facilitate this research, doing it can still be difficult work, however the rewards are well worth it.
To join the General Society of Mayflower Descendants, you must document your direct bloodline descent from one of the 51 Mayflower passengers listed below:
*Priscilla Mullins Alden
*Mary (Norris) Allerton
*Mrs. Edward Fuller
*Samuel Fuller Jr.
*Elizabeth (Fisher) Hopkins
*Elizabeth Tilley Howland
*Joan (Hurst) Tilley
*Susanna (Jackson) White Winslow
This process might take considerable time, even with the use of modern technology, but don’t get discouraged. Your research may also be aided by information held by living relatives and others who have already researched your family lines. Your task is to connect each generation in your lineage, parent to child from your pilgrim ancestor to yourself. Each link needs to be supported with documentation that clearly shows that parent to child relationship. All birth, marriage and death events that you record need to be supported with appropriate documentation. Download our document on evidence guidelines (below) for details on what is and is not admissible.
The General Society of Mayflower Descendants publishes a series of Mayflower Families Through Five Generations and Mayflower Families in Progress books, Libraries with complete or nearly complete collections of the books are
Akron/Summit County Library
Ashtabula County Library
Bexley Public Library
Cincinnati Public Library
Coshocton Public Library
Medina County Library
Montgomery County Library in Dayton
Ohio Genealogical Society Library in Belleville
Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library in Freemont
Toledo Public Library
Wayne County Public Library
Western Reserve Historical Society
Williams County Library
Researching these records for the purpose of joining the Mayflower Society is your responsibility. As you conduct research, remember that you are looking for original records, which constitute the proof of your Mayflower line. While they may be interesting and worth keeping, old family stories handed down through the generations, and faded notes jotted down by your relatives are not considered original records.
The General Society has prepared a short video on application dos and don’ts. Click here to watch it.
When you are ready to begin your Mayflower research, please submit a Preliminary Contact Form (below) and Proposed Lineage Review Form (below). Our Deputy Historian will then prepare a worksheet for you with the first 5 generations documented for you from the Mayflower Families “Silver Books,”. We may also be able to find approved applications on file that match your family and will save you duplicating work that has already been done. You will receive further instructions with your worksheet.
Information to help with your research and application: Ohio Mayflower Blog
Forms to start the application process
Instructions for your application