Week 33: Ancestor Legend. What is your favorite ancestral legend or family lore? Who originally told the story and what was the claim? Have you been able to prove the story true or false? What steps did you take to do so?
In past posts I have talked about several family legends, but I admit that my favorite one is still that we are descendants of John Alden and Priscilla Mullins of the Mayflower. Yeah, corny I know, but you have to admit being bombarded with pilgrim stuff every year in school makes connections like that seem extra cool. Yes, I do know now the correct history (and living in Virginia, that Jamestown was first) but you have to admit that there is nothing like saying you have roots to early Colonial America.
My Grandma Combs told me the story over and over as a child. She even read me the poem about them where Priscilla says "Speak for thyself John." My grandfather's great aunt was the family historian. Eliza Jane had a family bible that belonged to my 3rd great grandmother, Mary Jane Hayden Combs. The Hayden's are the ones that carried the line down to us from the Mayflower according to her stories. The bible had a complete lineage of the Hayden, and now Combs, family through to her generation. I would give anything to be able to find this bible.
Well, on a lark I sent in a proposed lineage to the General Society of Mayflower Descendants. You know what? It is looking more and more like this story is actually true. They have a confirmed lineage through my 4th great grandparents, Mary Jane's parents, Noah Gilpin Hayden and Unity Patterson. The society is confident through his parents, would like a bit more on Noah G. and his wife, and then the rest of the lineage to now.
Currently this is a project that I am working on, and at the same time I can apply for the DAR as Noah's grandfather is an accepted patriot in their database. That makes this family line doubly exciting to me.
photo credit: Mr. Ducke via photo pin cc