When I started this process of researching my family I never really dreamed that I’d find my way to the Mayflower. That seemed too much to hope for. But early on – and with fairly little effort – I did indeed find that two of my ancestors came to these shores on that most famous ship. Even more surprising was that this line was through my maternal grandfather – a line of which we knew precious little about.
The path looks like this:
Roy Bliven (my maternal grandfather) >> Theodaty Hiram Bliven >> Hannah Fisk Bliven >> Achsah Rowley Fisk >> Jesse Rowley, Jr. >> Jesse Rowley, Sr. >> Elnathan Rowley >> Shuabel Rowley >> Elizabeth Fuller Rowley >> Matthew Fuller >> Edward & (Ann?) Fuller (Mayflower passengers).
It was almost too easy to find this path to the Mayflower. I’m now going through and carefully checking each generation to make sure I can find some type of original documentation to prove each connection – that is certainly easier said then done. I’m toying with the idea of applying to the Mayflower Society if I can pull the documentation together. Fortunately, it appears the society does not require proof of the first and second generation – I suspect because those generations have already had exhaustive research done by professionals. It appears that the question of whether Matthew Fuller was actually Edward’s son remained unresolved for sometime. However, I’ve seen a lot of information that seems to conclude he was. I still need to read the evidence in depth to see for myself what the proof is that they were father and son. Matthew came to the states several years after his parents arrived on the Mayflower.
I find it sad that no one has ever been able to identify who Edward Fuller’s wife was. Also sad is the fact that neither one survived the first winter. I traveled to Plymouth a couple years ago and was able to photograph the monument/headstone erected to all those pilgrims who didn’t survive the first winter. I’ve read that they were buried in a mass grave so the Native Americans wouldn’t be able to tell how many of their number had died. I need to read more on this.
I’m hoping I won’t discover that I’ve taken a wrong turn anywhere in my research as I go back and retrace my steps and try to confirm each connection – that would be terribly disappointing. But I’m not willing to give my seat up anytime soon…the clues all look too promising to do that!