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JOHN ALDEN (d. 1687) of Plymouth and Duxbury
Parents: Despite much effort, nothing is known for certain of John's English background. [Ref][Ref]
John Alden died on 12 Sep 1687 in Duxbury. [Ref] Samuel Sewall [Ref] wrote in his diary that on that day, "Mr. John Alden, the antient magistrate of Plymouth dies." John married Priscilla Mullins.
William Bradford [Ref] wrote, "John Alden was hired for a cooper at Southampton where the ship was 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." He was 21 years old at the time. [Ref]
John received land to north side of the town in the 1623 Plymouth land division. [Ref] He, his wife Priscilla and his children Elizabeth and John were in lot four of the 22 May 1627 Plymouth cattle division. [Ref]
The relations between the Plymouth colonists and the Adventurers became fraught as the colonists' indebtedness to the Adventurers grew. In 1627 eight leading men of Plymouth joined four Adventurers in London in undertaking responsibility for the repayment of the entire debt in return for certain monopolies granted to them by other colonists. These eight men, who along with the four Adventurers called Undertakers, included William Brewster, Edward Winslow, Miles Standish, William Bradford, John Howland, John Alden, Isaac Allerton and Thomas Prence. [Ref]
By the 1630s the Pilgrims had trading posts from the Connecticut River to Castine, ME. John Alden and John Howland founded one in Maine on the Kennebec River at the site of the present day Augusta. [Ref]
On 2 Jan 1632/3 the General Court appointed John to a committee to assess taxes on the colonists, payable in grain or the equivalent. [Ref][Ref] He was again on the committee to set rates on 2 Jan 1633/4. Each year he was assessed relatively high taxes. [Ref]
In 1634 John was briefly detained in a Boston jail after a fatal argument with some rival English fur traders at Kennebec. [Ref]
John was for many years an Assistant and was Deputy Governor at least twice. [Ref]
John, along with Jonathan Brewster, Thomas Prence and Miles Standish, moved across the bay from Plymouth to what would be called Duxbury. [Ref] On 7 Jun 1637, Duxbury became a town. John's house in Duxbury still exists. [Ref]
On 6 Mar 1638 the Court of Assistants ordered Capt Standish and Mr John Alden to go 'with all convenient speede' to set out the bounds of Sandwich. [Ref]
He is in the Duxbury section of the 1643 list of those between 16 and 60 able to bear arms in Plymouth Colony. [Ref]
John was one of the 26 men who purchased land for Middleborough from the Indian sachem Wampatuck in Mar 1662. [Ref] In 1664, land was laid out near Namasket (Middleborough) for Mr. John Alden. [Ref]
John may have become quite conservative with age. [Ref] James Cudworth (quoted in Ref) wrote, "Mr Alden hath deceived the Expectations of many, and indeed lost the Affections of such, as I judge were his Cordial Christian Friends, [and he is] very active in such Ways ... to be Opressions [against the Quakers] of a High Nature."
Children of John Alden and Priscilla Mullins:
ELIZABETH ALDEN (c. 1624 - 1717)
Parents: John Alden and Priscilla Mullins
Elizabeth Alden was born about 1624 in Plymouth. [Ref] She died on 31 May 1717 in Little Compton. [Ref][Ref] She married William Pabodie on 26 or 20 Dec 1644. [Ref]
REBECCA ALDEN (m. 1667)
Parents: John Alden and Priscilla Mullins
Rebecca Alden was born say 1640. [Ref] She married Dr. Thomas Delano in 1667, before 30 Oct. [Ref]
She was the subject of an unfounded rumor that she was "with child" on 1 October 1661 [Ref] .
Stratton [Ref] says that it is controversial that Rebecca is the daughter who married Thomas Delano. He says that the only direct proof is that -- according to the Plymouth Colony Records -- on 1 Oct 1661, Abraham Pierce, Jr. apologised to the court for having foolishly told Ruth Sprague and Bethiah Tubbs at Francis Sprague's house that Rebecca Alden and Hester Delano were with child and that "wee should have young troopers within three quarters of a yeare."
Anderson, Robert Charles, The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England 1620-1633, Volumes I-III, 3 vols, 1995.
Bradford, William, Of Plymouth Plantation, Alfred A. Knopf , New York, 2001, with an introduction and notes by Samuel Eliot Morison.
Editors, "Samuel Sewall's Diary," New England Historical and Genealogical Register 6, 1852.
Fessenden, G. M., "A Genealogy of the Bradford Family," New England Historical and Genealogical Register 4, 1850.
No Author, First Church in Middleborough, Mass.: Mr. Putnam's century and half discourses, an historical account, and a catalogue of members, Boston, C.C.P. Moody, 1990.
No Author, "Sandwich and Bourne Colony and Town Records," 1912, C.W. Swift, Yarmouthport, in Leonard H. Smith, ed., Cape Cod Library of Local History and Genealogy, v. 2, 1992, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore.
No Author, "Sketches of the Early History of Middleborough, in the County of Plymouth," New England Historical and Genealogical Register 2, 1849, 213-220, 330-344.
Philbrick, Nathaniel, Mayflower, Viking, New York, 2006.
Plymouth Colony Archive Project, Court Records Laws and 17th Century Texts, http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/users/deetz.
Shurtleff, Nathaniel B., "Plymouth Colony Rates," New England Historical and Genealogical Register 4, 1850 252-3.
Stratton, Eugene Aubrey, Plymouth Colony: Its History and People 1620 - 1691, Salt Lake City, Ancestry, 1986.