NameJohn Howland
Birthca 1592, Fenstanton, Huntingdonshire, England234,271,285,287,355
Christen16 Jan 1602/1603, Cambridgeshire, Ely, England255
Death23 Feb 1672/1673, Rocky Nook, Kingston, MA234,264,271,290,356,357,277,358,287,355
Burial25 Feb 1672/1673, Burial Hill, Plymouth, Plymouth, MA255,359,287,355
FatherHenry Howland (1564-1635)
MotherMargaret (1567-1629)
Spouses
Birthbef 30 Aug 1607, Henlow, Bedfordshire, England360,361,362,271,286,363,364,231,291
Death21 Dec 1687, Swansea, Bristol, MA234,271,286,77,277,365
BurialBrown Lot, Litttle Neck Cem, Riverside, RI255
FatherJohn Tilley (<1571-1620)
MotherJoan Hurst (<1567-<1620)
Marriageca 1625, Plymouth, Plymouth, MA362,271,286,291
ChildrenDesire (ca1625-1683)
 John (1627-)
 Hope (1629-1683)
 Elizabeth (ca1631-)
 Lydia (ca1633-)
 Hannah (ca1637-)
 Joseph (ca1640-)
 Jabez (ca1644-)
 Ruth (ca1646-)
 Isaac (1649-)
Notes for John Howland
“One hundred and eighteen years ago, L.M. Howland contributed a short article to the Register in which he discussed the origins of the Howland family in America. Earlier American genealogists had attempted to demonstrate the relationship of the emigrant John Howland and the Howlands of Essex, England, later of London and Surrey, basing their assertions on a pedigree at the Heralds’ College in London. In his article, Howland reported on Col. Joseph Lemuel Chester’s researches in London, which showed that the emigrant John Howland was not a younger son of the London branch of the family. (Half a century later it would be proven that the origins of the American family lay in Fenny Stanton, Huntingdonshire, rather than in Essex.” 366

“John Howland was born in 1593 or 1594, as he was ‘above eighty years,’ or ‘in his eightieth year’ when he died in February 1673 (PCR 8:34). This means that he was about fourteen years older than Elizabeth Tilley when he married her ca. 1623, based on the estimated birth date of their first child, Desire Howland, which was ca. 1624. He would have been twenty-six or twenty-seven when he sailed to America. It has been argued by Johnson that Howland was more likely to have been born in 1599, but based on the evidence of his age at the time of his death even the traditional date of 1592 would seem to be a year or two too early” 301

John Howland grew up in Fenstanton, a town 9 miles NW of Cambridge on the old Roman Road. No baptismal record has been found but he was said to have been "above 80 years" when he died in 1672.234

John Howland was a passenger on the Mayflower, which sailed from Plymouth, England, in the autumn of 1620. He was the indentured manservant of Mr. John Carver, a wealthy Londoner, who became the first governor of New Plimoth Colony in MA. On 11 Nov 1620, John Howland was the 13th man to sign the Mayflower Compact.234

He was called by Governor William Bradford "a lusty younge man". During one of the severe autumn storms which hit during the voyage, John Howland was washed overboard. In Governor Bradford's words "It pleased God that he caught hould of ye halliards which hunge over board, and rane out at length; yet he was held up ... and then with a boat hooke and other means got into ye ship again".

When they arrived in Plymouth, Governor Carver's family consisted of John Carver, his wife Kathrine, John Howland, Desire Minter, a man servant named Roger Wilder, a boy named Jasper More, a boy named William Latham, and an unnamed servant maid. When Elizabeth Tilley's parents, John and Joan Tilley, and her uncle, Edward Tilley, died the first winter, Elizabeth Tilley became part of the Carver household. Roger Wilder died the first winter. Governor Carver died a few months later, in April 1621, and his wife died in May 1621. Jaspar More died 6 Dec 1621 and the servant maid died soon after. That left John Howland as the head of the household containing four people, including Elizabeth Tilley, Desire Minter and the boy, William Latham.234

The early records of the Colony of New Plymouth contain an account of the Division of Land in 1623 in which John Howland, as head of a household, received four acres "on the Southside of the brook to the woodward". 234
He was on the Freeman list in 1633 but was head of one of 12 companies dividing livestock in 1627. He could have inherited Carver's money after Governor Carver died in the spring following their arrival in Plymouth. It has been said that John Howland immediately bought his freedom, but no record has survived.234

In 1626 John Howland was one of the 42 colonists who assumed Phymouth Colony's debt of 1800 pounds owed to the Merchant Adventurers on London. In order to pay off this mortgage, a monopoly in the colony's trade was granted to William Bradford, Isaac Allerton and Myles Standish, who chose John Howland as one of their partners, or undertakers, in the project. Later, they established a trading post far to the northward, on the Kennebec River, at the present site of Augusta, Maine. John was put in charge of the trading post and a brisk trade developed there in beaver, otter and other furs gathered by the Indians. John's family may have spent some time with him in Maine, and some of his children may have been born there.234

P Ch R: 1:144 held hands in ordination P Ch R: 1:147 "He was a good old disciple and had bin sometimes a magistrate here, a plaine-hearted christian"
!SOURCE: John Howland of the Mayflower, V.1 Came on Mayflower as servant to John Carver. On 1633 freeman list. Will dated 29 May 1672, inventory 3 Mar 1672/3, mentions wife Elizabeth; oldest son John Howland; sons Jabez and Joseph; youngest son Isaac; daughters Desire Gorham, Hope Chipman, Elizabeth Dickenson, Lydai Browne, Hannah Bosworth, and Ruth Cushman; and granddaughter Elizabeth Howland, daughter of his son John.
!from Pioneers of Mass: "Signed Mayflower Compact; took an active part in the early explorations. Settled at Plymouth. Town officer; a partner in the Trading Company of the Colony;Asst. or deputy almost continually. Prominent in the church, so that he "assisted in the imposition of hands" upon Rev. John Cotton, Jr. when he was ordained pastor 30 Jun 1669. He died "a profitable instrument of good; the last man that was left of those that came over in the ship called the May Flower that arrived at Plymouth." (Plym. Col. Rec. VII, 34) (copy of this in file)
!have picture of stone per EPITAPHS OF BURIAL HILL by Kingman Here ended the Pilgirmage of John Howland and Elizabeth his wife. She was the dau'tr of Gov. Carver (this is a mistake) They arrived in the Mayflower Dec. 1620; they had 4 sons & 6 dau'trs from whom are descended a numerous posterity "1672 Efb'y 23d John Howland of Plymouth deceased, he lived to the age of 80 yr's. He was the last man that was left of those that came overin the Ship called the Mayflo wer that lived in Plymouth
Ref to CHRISTENING: Stoddard, Francis R., The Truth About the Pilgrims, Reprint, Baltimore, 1973, p 138.
Ref to DEATH: Mayflower Descendants, 18:69; Roberts, Gary Boyd, Mayflower Source Records, Baltimore, 1986, p 548.
Ref to BURIAL: Gravesite viewed August 20, 1994 by Patricia, Carol & Dale Fink.255

The identity of this family is proved by the probate records of John's brother. Humphrey Howland, a draper, settled in St. Swithin's Parish in London. In his will written in London 28 May 1646 and proved 10 July 1646 by his second wife Anne, he mentions his brothers Arthur, John, and Henry and his sister Margaret, wife of Richard Phillips of Fenstanton, shoemaker, his "nephew" Simon Howland, and his "niece" Hannah Howland, Simon's sister. Additional information about John Howland's family is found in the intestate estate of another brother, George Howland who was a merchant of St. Dunstan's, East London. His estate was administered by his brother Humphrey Howland's wife, Anne, 11 July 1646.234

A Simon Howland was baptized in Fenstanton 19 Aug 1604 , called "son of Henrye" and was probably the Simon Howland who was apprenticed 19 March 1622 to Humphrey Howland, citizen and draper of London.280

• An original letter from a genealogist in England [Chester, Joseph L., "Pedigrees of the Families of Howland of Essex County, England and of Plymouth Mass.": London, 1879], in 1879, mentions “the extraordinary fact that I find the surname of Howland in no other county in England than Essex, and originally in no other locality in that county except at Newport and Wicken and their immediate vicinity. Wherever at later periods I have found Howlands in other counties, as Hertfordshire, Surrey, Berks, etc., I have invariably traced them back to Newport and Wicken. It is clear that several families of the name were living there contemporaneously and equally so that they were all in some way connected...at the period of the birth of John Howland of the Mayflower, there were living then no less than five Howlands...” In two of these lines, the Howland name terminated in heiresses, one of whom, Elizabeth by name, bequeathed the Streatham Estates to her husband, the Duke of Bedford, who then acquired the additional title of Baron Howland.
John Howland of the Mayflower was born in 1592, the son of Henry Howland, of Fenstanton, Huntingdonshire (near Newport, County Essex). [Howland, William, Editor and Compiler), "The Howlands in America": The York Press Co., Govverneur, N. Y., 1939] He had at least four brothers: Arthur, George, Henry, and Humphrey. His brothers Arthur and Henry came to America [Ibid, and "Records of Plymouth Colony] about 1623/4 and later joined the Society of Friends. Early records reveal that Arthur, whose home was in Marshfield, was fined many times for “permitting of a Quaker’s meeting in his house.” When he refused to pay the fines, he was sent to jail. Henry was fined for entertaining Quakers, at the Court of March, 1658.
In mid-Atlantic, during a violent storm, John Howland was almost drowned when a mountainous wave swept him overboard. Grasping a halyard which was trailing astern of the Mayflower, although at first he was several fathoms under water, he finally managed to haul himself to the surface. He was then rescued, by means of a boathook along with the rope, etc. [Bradford, William, "History of Plimouth Plantation," 1912 ed., Massachusetts Historical Society, page 151.]
By November 11, 1620, he had sufficiently recuperated from his oceanic adventure to be the thirteenth signer of the Mayflower Compact. And a few days later, December 6, he was one of the ten chosen to make the third exploration along the shore. On this occasion, they were attacked by the Indians at Eastham, Cape Cod. In Bradford’s journal, we learn that the mast of the shallop broke during a sudden squall, and the sail was lost overboard. “The weather was very cold, and it froze so hard...the spray of the sea lighting on their coats, they were as if they had been glazed.” [Ibid.]
John Howland was one of Governor Carver’s family. Both Governor Carver and his wife were among the fifty Pilgrims who died during the first few months of the struggle for survival at Plymouth. It is believed that John Howland inherited John Carver’s estate, as the Carvers had no children of their own.
About 1626, John Howland was one of those (including Bradford, Brewster, Standish, etc.) who assumed the Colony’s debt to the Merchant Adventurer, 1800 pounds. At least as early as 1633-35, he was an Assistant or member of the Governor’s Council, and from 1641 to 1670 was frequently a deputy or representative to the General Court. In 1634, he commanded the Pilgrim’s Trading Post at Kennebec (Maine).

Nathanial Morton wrote “The 23th of February 1672 Mr. John Howland senir of the Town of Plymouth Deceased; hee was a Godly man and an ancient professor in the wayes of Christ; hee lived untill he attained above eighty yeares in the world, hee was one of the first Comers into this land and proved a usefull Instrument of Good in his place & was the last man that was left of those that Came over in the shipp Called the May Flower, that lived in Plymouth; hee was with honor Intered att the Towne of Plymouth on the 25 of February 1672.”271

“• Mayflower Passengers: Classified by Williston (in "Saints & Strangers," Williston, George F., New York, 1945, page 134) into four groups:
1) Saint
2) Stranger
3) Hired hand
4) Servant
Indentured Servants :
"There was a fourth and much larger group sharply set off from all the others – the indentured servants. These were not servants in our sense of the word. They were not housemaids, butlers, cooks, valets, or general flunkies to wait upon the personal needs of the Pilgrims. On the contrary, they were brought along to do the heaviest kind of labor. They were to fell trees, hew timbers, build houses, clear fields and plough them, tend crops, gather the harvest, and do whatever their mas-ters ordered. During the period of their indenture, which usually ran for seven years, they were fed, clothed, and housed by their masters, but received no wages, being virtually slaves, and were frequently bought, sold, and hired out as such.
“Eleven of the eighteen servants on board were strong young men, a sixth of the adult company. For the most part they belonged to the Leyden group, which suggests that if the Saints were poor, the Strangers were still poorer.
“As befitted a man of his wealth, John Carver had four — for his wife, a boy and a maid; for himself, Roger Wilder and John Howland, “a lustie yonge man,” who quickly made a name for himself at Plymouth.
“The William Whites had two, as had the Winslows, one being George Soule of Eckington, Worcestershire, who was destined, like Howland, to rise to some prominence after he had served his time.

Saints & Strangers, page 136:
“Then, suddenly, the weather changed as fierce storms came roaring out of the west. For days at a time it was impossible to carry a yard of sail, the ship drifting under bare poles with the helmsman desperately trying to hold her into the wind as she wallowed through mountainous seas which often had her lying on her beam-ends. The pounding of heavy seas opened up many seams in the deck and superstructure, letting cascades of icy water down upon the ill and frightened passengers curled up in their narrow bunks below.
“Unable to endure it any longer in the stuffy hold, John Howland came on deck one day and was immediately swept overboard. The ship happened to be trailing some of the topsail halyards, and Howland managed to get hold of these and hang on ‘though he was sundrie fadomes under water,’ till he was pulled in with a boat hook. He was ‘something ill with it, yet he lived many years after, and became a profitable member, both in church and commone wealthe.’”

Saints & Strangers, page 143:
November 11, 1620
Signing of “The Compact”
The covenant was first signed by those who had the right or had assumed the privilege of using the title of “Mr.” — then pronounced “master” and often written so. Relatively the aristocrats of the company, there were twelve of this group, with Saints and Strangers equally represented.
John Carver, the most substantial and respectable among them, signed first. He was followed by Bradford, Winslow, Brewster, and Allerton. Then came Standish, Alden, Deacon Fuller, Christopher Martin, William Mullins, William White, Richard Warren, and Stephen Hopkins. Next, the “goodmen” were asked to sign. (Note: after these 12 signed, John Howland was the 13th to sign.) Only twenty-seven responded; several either declined or were ailing. Lastly, no doubt with the hope that it might make them take their prescribed loyalty more seriously, a few of the servants were invited or commanded to sign — Edward Dotey, Edward Leister, and two others [George Soule and John Howland]. The women were excluded, of course, for they were not free agents, being the legal chattels and servants of their lords — indentured for life, as it were.

Saints & Strangers, page 153:
On December 6th, with Coffin at the tiller, eighteen men pushed off in the shallop to round the bay and have a look at “Thievish Harbor,” or Plymouth, as it had been named by Captain John Smith six years previously. Ten of the Pilgrims had volunteered to go – of the Saints, Edward and John Tilley, Bradford, Winslow, and Governor Carver with his servant, John Howland; of the Strangers, Captain Standish, Richard Warren, and Stephen Hopkins with one of his servants, Edward Dotey. It was bitterly cold, with a stiff breeze blowing, and the spray whipping across the open boat cut like a knife and froze their clothes till they were “like coates of iron.” Many were “sick unto death,” Edward Tilley and the master gunner fainted with the cold, but they held to their course, sailing south past Corn Hill and s

Saints & Strangers, page 162:
The other side of the street was left open for a timwinging round a sandy point into what is now Wellfleet Bay.e and used as part of the Pilgrims' cornfields. But it was later staked off into lots. That at the foot of Fort Hill was given to Captain Standish so that he might quickly get to his post in time of danger. Just below, at the corner of the Street and the Highway, a large tract was reserved for the Governor’s House. On the slope from the Highway to the beach were the plots of Stephen Hopkins, John Howland, and Deacon Samuel Fuller, the last of the edge of a high bank overlooking Plymouth Rock – Cole’s Hill, as it came to be called for the popular owner of the pleasant and often boisterous tavern that long stood there.

Saints & Strangers, pages 319-20:
Contrary to popular belief, the Pilgrims never hanged a witch, leaving that to the better-schooled but more benighted men of Massachusetts.
The wife of William Holmes, Standish’s lieutenant, was likewise tried on complaint of one Dinah Sylvester.
“What evidence have you of the fact?” the Sylvester woman was asked by the presiding magistrate, John Howland.
“She appeared to me as a witch.”
“In what shape?”
“In the shape of a bear, your honor.”
“How far off was the bear?”
“About a stone’s throw from the highway.”
“What manner of tail did the bear have?”
“I could not tell, your honor, as his head was towards me.”
To discourage such nonsense, Dinah was fined £5 and whipped. And that was the end of witchcraft in the Old Colony, though the law against it long remained on the books.

Saints and Strangers, page 443:
Howland, John (1592-1672) - of London
"a plaine-hearted Christian"
Evidently inherited Carver's estate and immediately bought his freedom; married Elizabeth Tilley, c. 1624; Purchaser, 1626; Undertaker, 1627-41; asst. governor, 1633-35, and probably 1629-32; in charge of Kennebec trading post at time of Hocking murder, 1634; apparently held somewhat to blame, for never again entrusted with public office; died Swansea; 9 children.
SOURCE: Saints and Strangers, George F. Willison, Reynal & Hitchcock, New York, 1945.

• ENGLISH RESEARCH
Ever since McClure Meredith Howland discovered in 1937 [Howland Quarterly, Vol. 1, No. 3, January, 1937] that Pilgrim John Howland was a son of Henry Howland of Fen Stanton, Huntingdonshire, England, attempts have been made to find out more about the Huntingdonshire Howlands and specifically to ascertain the names of Pilgrim John Howland’s mother and grandparents.
In 1948, Leon Clark Hills [Howland Quarterly, Vol. 14, No. 1, July, 1949] of Washington, D.C. reported that he had discovered in the parish records of Holy Trinity, Ely, Cambridgeshire, the marriage of a Henry Howland to Alice Ames [should be Ayres] on April 26, 1600 and the subsequent baptism of a son, John, January 16, 1602/3. Mr. Hills stated that further proof should be found before it was accepted that this is the same Henry Howland who lived in Fenstanton.
The year of birth of the John Howland of Ely is 10 years later than the accepted year of birth of John Howland of Plymouth who died “died 23 February 1672 and lived untill hee attained above eighty yeares in the world.” [Mayflower Descendant, 18:49]
The first time it is stated that Henry Howland of Fenstanton and Henry Howland of Ely are one and the same appears to be in Colonel Stoddard’s book [Stoddard, Francis R., Truth About the Pilgrims (1952), page 138], although he is puzzled by the ten year discrepancy in birth dates.
Recently our Society engaged Sir Anthony Wagner, Garter Principal King of Arms, to try to establish the ancestry of Henry Howland of Fenstanton and, also, to determine whether he is the same Henry Howland who married Alice Ayres in Ely. Sir Anthony’s conclusion is that they are two separate families and that Henry Howland of Ely also appears on the Ely records as Henry Howlett.
As far as can be determined at the present time, the Pilgrim John Howland’s family in England is as follows:
Henry Howland, of the Parish of Fenny (sic) Stanton,
Huntingdonshire, yeoman, died at Fenstanton, 17 May 1635.
His wife, Margaret, buried at Fenstanton, 31 July 1629.
SOURCE: Howland Quarterly, 21-30, 1956, pages 6 &7.

• From Gov. Wm. Bradford’s History of Plimoth Plantation::
“In sundrie of these stormes the winds were so feirce, & ye seas so high, as they could not beare a knote of saile, but were forced to hull, for diverce days togither. And in one of them, as they thus lay at hull, in a mighty storme, a lustie yonge man (called John Howland) coming upon some occasion above ye grattings, was, with a seele of ye shipe throwne into (ye) sea; but it pleased God yt he caught hould of ye top-saile halliards, which hunge over board, & rane out at length; yet he held his hould (though he was sundrie fadomes under water) till he was hald up by ye same rope of ye brime of ye water, and then with a boat hooke and other means got into ye shipe againe, and his life was saved; and though he was something ill with it, yet he lived many years after, and became a profitable member both in church & comone wealthe.”
SOURCE: The Bradford History, pp. 92-3, Comm. of Mass. ed. Wright & Potter, State Printers, Boston 1898; taken from A Chipman Genealogy, Chipman Historics, Norwell, Massachusetts, 1970.

• Still another passenger nearly paid with his life for a “minor” disobedience. A dozen or so days into the storm, John Howland, the servant of John Carver, could no longer stand the stench of the crowded tween-decks. The captain, Elder Brewster, and his own master had each forbade any of them to go topside, but if he didn’t get a breath of fresh air soon... Finally, he decided that he was going to get what he wanted, and so up he climbed and out onto the sea-swept main deck. It was like a nightmare outside! The seas around him were mountainous; he’d never seen anything like it — huge, boiling, gray-green waves lifting and tossing the small ship in their midst, dark clouds roiling the horizon, and the wind shrieking through the rigging — Howland shuddered, and it was not from the icy blast of “fresh air” that hit him.
Just then, the ship seemed to literally drop out from beneath him — it was there, and then it wasn’t — and the next thing he was falling... He hit the water, which was so cold that it was like being smashed between two huge blocks of ice. Instantly stunned, his last conscious act was to blindly reach out — and by God’s grace, the ship at that moment was heeled so far over that the lines from her spars were trailing in the water. One of these happened to snake across his wrist, and he closed on it and instinctively hung on.
According to the U.S. Navy, a man can stand immersion in the North Atlantic in November for about four minutes. There is no telling how long Howland was in the sea, how soon someone spotted him and raised the alarm. When they hauled him aboard he was blue, but he recovered, though he was sick for several days. And he never again stuck his head above deck, until he was invited to do so.
SOURCE: Marshall, Peter and Manuel, David, The Light and the Glory, Fleming H. Revell Company, Old Tappan, New Jersey, 1977, pages 117-8.

• In 1626 John Howland became one of the forty-two colonists who assumed Plymouth Colony’s debt of £1800 owed to the Merchant Adventurers of London. In order to pay off this mortgage, a monopoly in the Colony’s trade was granted to William Bradford, Isaac Allerton and Myles Standish, who chose John Howland as one of their partners, or undertakers, in the project. Later they established a trading post far to the northward, on the Kennebec River, at the present site of Augusta, Maine. John was put in charge of the trading post and a brisk trade developed there in beaver, otter and other furs gathered by the Indians. John’s family may have spent some time with him in Maine, and some of his children may have been born there.
SOURCE: John Howland of the Mayflower, Vol. 1; White, Elizabeth Pearson, Picton Press, Camden, Maine, 1990, page 4.

• HOWLAND, JOHN – The son of Henry Howland of Fenstanton, Huntingdonshire, John came to Plymouth on the 1620 Mayflower as a servant to John Carver. After the death of Carver, he rose rapidly as a leader in the colony. In 1627 he was the head of one of the twelve companies which divided the livestock, and he was one of the eight Plymouth Undertakers who assumed responsibility for the colony’s debt to the Adventurers in return for certain monopoly trade privileges. He was on the 1633 freeman list, and by 1633, if not earlier, was an Assistant, being reelected to this position in 1634 and 1635 (PCR, passim). In 1634 he was in charge of the colony trading outpost on the Kennebec River when Talbot and Hocking were killed (see text). He received a good number of land grants, was elected deputy for Plymouth, served on numerous special committees, and was an important lay leader of the Plymouth Church. The Reverend John Cotton related how at his own ordination as pastor of the church in 1669 “the aged mr John Howland was appointed by the chh to Joyne in imposition of hands” (Ply. Ch. Recs. 1:144). Howland died on 24 February 1672/73 in his eightieth year, and John Cotton noted his passing, “He was a good old disciple, & had bin sometime a magistrate here, a plaine-hearted christian” (Ply. Ch. Recs. 1:147; see also Nathaniel Morton’s eulogy in the text).
John Howland married, probably ca. 1626, Elizabeth Tilley, q. v. In his will, dated 29 May 1672, inventory 3 March 1672/73, he mentioned his wife Elizabeth; oldest son John Howland; sons Jabez and Joseph; youngest son Isaac; daughters Desire Gorham, Hope Chipman, Elizabeth Dickenson, Lydia Browne, Hannah Bosworth, and Ruth Cushman; and granddaughter Elizabeth Howland, daughter of his son John (MD 2:70). His widow Elizabeth, died at the home of her daughter Lydia Browne, wife of James, at Swansea on 21 December 1687, and in her will, dated 17 December 1686, proved 10 January 1687/88, she said she was seventy-nine years old, and mentioned her sons John, Joseph, Jabez, and Isaac’ daughters Lydia Browne, Elizabeth Dickenson, and Hannah Bosworth; son-in-law Mr. James Browne; and grandchildren James Browne, Jabez Browne, Dorothy Browne, Desire Cushman, Elizabeth Bursley, and Nathaniel the son of Joseph Howland (MD 3:54). Franklyn Howland, A Brief Genealogical and Biographical History of Arthur, Henry, and John Howland and their Descendants...(New Bedford, Mass., 1885), contains many errors. It is debatable whether John Howland or John Alden has the greatest number of descendants living today, but certainly the number of both is high. Elizabeth Pearson White, former editor of the Mayflower Quarterly is compiling a comprehensive family history of the first five generations of John Howland’s family.
SOURCE: Plymouth Colony: Its History & People, 1620-1691, Stratton, Eugene Aubrey, Ancestry Publishing, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1986, pp. 311-12.

• However, Plymouth Colony was never unaware that their nearby growing neighbor to the north [Massachusetts Bay Colony] held the power, and there was frequently a touch of arrogance on the part of the Bay Colony toward its smaller sister colony. A 1634 incident on the Kennebec River demonstrated the Bay Colony’s assumption of power. The Bradford Patent gave Plymouth the right to settle or trade on the Kennebec River and to seize all persons, ships, and goods that might attempt to trade with the Indians on the Kennebec. Plymouth set up a trading post there under John Howland. A trading ship from the Piscataqua settlement under John Hocking ignored repeated warnings from Howland’s group that it had no right to be there. Howland ordered one of his men to cut the moorings of Hocking’s ship so it would drift down the river. Hocking shot and killed the man, Moses Talbot, and one of Talbot’s companions in turn shot and killed Hocking.
SOURCE: Plymouth Colony: Its History & People, 1620-1691, Stratton, Eugene Aubrey, Ancestry Publishing, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1986 , page 43.

Sources:
• BIRTH DATE: Families of the Pilgrims, John Howland, Compliled by Hubert Kinney Shaw, Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants, 1979., page 4
• DEATH DATE, DEATH PLACE, BURIAL: Plymouth Colony Records, 1633-1689, William White Press, Boston, 1857; reprinted Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976., page 34


Last Modified: 11 NOV 1995

Reference Note 18


Reference Note 20


Reference Note 39


Reference Note 45


Reference Note 47


Gretchen and Dave Mills
1520 Avonrea Road
San Marino, CA 91108-2309
818 799-6479” 359

From Caleb’s Web Page

John Howland

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BORN: 1599-1602*, Fenstanton, Huntingdon, England, son of Henry Howland
and Margaret (---)
DIED: 23 February 1672/3, Rocky Nook, Kingston, MA
MARRIED: Elizabeth Tilley, daughter of John and Joan (Hurst)(Rogers)
Tilley of the Mayflower, bef. 1625

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* The traditional date that has been ascribed to John Howland's birth is
1592, and this date has not been questioned even in scholarly journal
publications and books such as Elizabeth White's "John Howland of the
Mayflower" or "The Great Migration Begins" by Robert C. Anderson. I
believe, however, that this date is significantly faulty for the following
reasons:

* John Howland's wife was born in 1607, and it seems difficult to imagine
having a first wife that is 15 years younger
* Most men married first between the ages of 21 and 25. John Howland was
married about 1624. This would put his birth range at 1599-1603. A
first marriage at age 32 is most unlikely.
* John Howland is called a "manservant" in William Bradford's passenger
list, suggesting he was an apprentice in 1620. Apprentices (servants)
were almost always under 25 years old, meaning Howland must have been
born after 1595.
* John Howland's last child was born in 1649. If the 1592 date is
accepted, he would have been 57 years old, an unlikely condition.
* William Bradford writes in that John Howland was a "lusty young man" in
1620. It is unlikely that Bradford would call a 28-year old a "young
man".
* John Howland signed the Mayflower Compact, and to do so he would have
had to be at least 18 years old, and probably 21. This means he was at
least born before 1602.

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CHILDREN:
NAME BIRTH DEATH MARRIAGE

Desire 1625, Plymouth 13 October 1683, John Gorham, c1643
Barnstable, MA

John 24 April 1627, after 1699 Mary Lee, 26 October
Plymouth 1651, Plymouth

Hope 30 August 1629, 8 January 1683/4, John Chipman, c1647
Plymouth Barnstable
(1). Ephraim Hicks, 13
September 1649, Plymouth,
Elizabeth c1631, possibly 1691, Oyster Bay, MA
in Maine NY
(2). John Dickinson, 10
July 1651, Plymouth

Lydia c1633, possibly aft. 11 January James Brown, c1654
in Maine 1710/11

Hannah c1637, possibly unknown Jonathan Bosworth,
in Maine probably on 6 July 1661

Joseph c1640, Kingston, January 1703/4, Elizabeth Southworth, 7
MA Plymouth December 1664, Plymouth

Jabez c1644, Kingston, between 1708 and Bethiah Thacher, c1668
MA 1712
Thomas Cushman, 17
Ruth c1646, Kingston, between 1672 and 16 November 1664, Plymouth,
MA October 1679
MA
Elizabeth Vaughan, c1676,
Isaac 15 November 1649, 9 March 1723/4, probably at Marshfield,
Kingston, MA Middleboro, MA
MA

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ANCESTRAL SUMMARY:

The ancestry of John Howland is discussed in John Howland of the Mayflower
through Desire Howland for Five Generations", Vol. 1, by Elizabeth Pearson
White, available from the Mayflower Web Page bookstore. John Howland is the
son of Henry and Margaret Howland of Fenstanton, Huntingdon, England. Henry
died on 17 May 1635 in Fenstanton, and Margaret was buried on 31 July 1629.
Besides son John, who came on the Mayflower, they also had Humphrey, Arthur,
Henry, George, and Margaret. Henry came to Plymouth sometime before 1633,
and Arthur came sometime before 1640. For information on Arthur Howland, see
the National Genealogical Society Quarterly 71:84+, and for information on
Henry Howland see NGSQ 75:105-116, 216-225.

John Howland is an ancestor to President George Bush, and to First Lady
Edith (Carrow) Roosevelt (Mrs. Theodore Roosevelt). Presidents Richard
Nixon and Gerald Ford are descendants of John Howland's brother Henry.
Winston Churchill is descended from John Howland's brother Arthur.

BIOGRAPHICAL SUMMARY:

John Howland came on the Mayflower as a servant to John Carver. He is best
remembered for having fallen off the Mayflower during a mighty storm, as
recorded by Bradford:

In sundry of these storms the winds were so fierce and the seas so high, as
they could not bear a know of sail, but were forced to hull for divers days
together. And in one of them, as they thus lay at hull in a mighty storm, a
lusty young man called John Howland, coming upon some occasion above the
gratings was, with a seele of the ship, thrown into the sea; but it pleased
God that he caught hold of the topsail halyards which hung overboard and ran
out at length. Yet he held his hold (though he was sundry fathoms under
water) till he was hauled up by the same rope to the brim of the water, and
then with boat hook and other means got into the ship again and his life
saved. And though he was something ill with it, yet he lived many years
after and became a profitable member both in church and commonwealth.

John Howland's wife was Elizabeth Tilley, the daughter of John Tilley and
Joan (Hurst) Rogers (all were Mayflower passengers). Elizabeth (Tilley)
Howland died on 21 December 1687, in Swansea, Massachusetts.

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SOURCES:

(1). Elizabeth Pearson White, John Howland of the Mayflower through Desire
Howland for Five Generations, vol. 1

(2). Susan Roser, Mayflower Increasings and Decreasings, (2nd ed)

(3). Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony, Its History and Its People,
1620-1691, Salt Lake City, 1984

(4). Of Plymouth Plantation, by William Bradford, written c1630-1651

(5). Mayflower Descendant, 41:1-8, "The Mayflower Descents of President
George Herbert Walker Bush, First Lady Barbara Pierce Bush, and Vice
President James Danforth Quayle", by Gary Boyd Roberts.

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Mayflower Web Pages. Caleb Johnson © 1997


From Caleb’s Web Page

John Howland's Will

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The Last Will and Testament of mr John howland of Plymouth late Deceased,
exhibited to the Court held att Plymouth the fift Day of March Anno Dom 1672
on the oathes of mr Samuell ffuller and mr William Crow as followeth

Know all men to whom these prsents shall Come That I John howland senir of
the Towne of New Plymouth in the Collonie of New Plymouth in New England in
America, this twenty ninth Day of May one thousand six hundred seaventy and
two being of whole mind, and in Good and prfect memory and Remembrance
praised be God; being now Grown aged; haveing many Infeirmities of body upon
mee; and not Knowing how soon God will call mee out of this world, Doe make
and ordaine these prsents to be my Testament Containing herein my last Will
in manor and forme following;

Imp I Will and bequeath my body to the Dust and my soule to God that Gave it
in hopes of a Joyfull Resurrection unto Glory; and as Concerning my
temporall estate, I Dispose thereof as followeth;

Item I Doe give and bequeath unto John howland my eldest sonne besides what
lands I have alreddy given him, all my Right and Interest To that one
hundred acres of land graunted mee by the Court lying on the eastern side of
Tauton River; between Teticutt and Taunton bounds and all the appurtenances
and privilidges Therunto belonging, T belonge to him and his heirs and
assignes for ever; and if that Tract should faile, then to have all my Right
title and Interest by and in that Last Court graunt to mee in any other
place, To belonge to him his heires and assignes for ever;

Item I give and bequeath unto my son Jabez howland all those my upland and
Meadow That I now posesse at Satuckett and Paomett, and places adjacent,
with all the appurtenances and privilidges, belonging therunto, and all my
right title and Interest therin, To belonge to him his heires and assignes
for ever,

Item I Give and bequeath unto my son Jabez howland all that my one peece of
land that I have lying on the southsyde of the Mill brooke, in the Towne of
Plymouth aforsaid; be it more or lesse; and is on the Northsyde of a feild
that is now Gyles Rickards senir To belonge to the said Jabez his heirs and
assignes for ever;

Item I give and bequeath unto Isacke howland my youngest sonne all those my
uplands and meddows Devided and undivided with all the appurtenances and
priviliges unto them belonging, lying and being in the Towne of Middlebery,
and in a tract of Land Called the Majors Purchase near Namassakett Ponds;
which I have bought and purchased of William White of Marshfeild in the
Collonie of New Plymouth; which may or shall appeer by any Deed or writinges
Together with the aformentioned prticulares To belonge to the said Isacke
his heirs and assignes for ever;

Item I give and bequeath unto my said son Isacke howland the one halfe of my
twelve acree lott of Meddow That I now have att Winnatucsett River within
the Towne of Plymouth aforsaid To belonge to him and said Isacke howland his
heires and assignes for ever,

Item I Will and bequeath unto my Deare and loveing wife Elizabeth howland
the use and benifitt of my now Dwelling house in Rockey nooke in the
Township of Plymouth aforsaid, with the outhousing lands, That is uplands
uplands [sic] and meddow lands and all appurtenances and privilidges
therunto belonging in the Towne of Plymouth and all other Lands housing and
meddowes that I have in the said Towne of Plymouth excepting what meddow and
upland I have before given To my sonnes Jabez and Isacke howland During her
naturall life to Injoy make use of and Improve for her benifitt and Comfort;

Item I give and bequeath unto my son Joseph howland after the Decease of my
loveing wife Elizabeth howland my aforsaid Dwelling house att Rockey nooke
together with all the outhousing uplands and Medowes appurtenances and
privilidges belonging therunto; and all other housing uplands and meddowes
appurtenances and privilidges That I have within the aforsaid Towne of New
Plymouth excepting what lands and meadowes I have before Given To my two
sonnes Jabez and Isacke; To belong to him the said Joseph howland To him and
his heires and assignes for ever;

Item I give and bequeath unto my Daughter Desire Gorum twenty shillings

Item I give and bequeath To my Daughter hope Chipman twenty shillings

Item I give and bequeath unto my Daughter Elizabeth Dickenson twenty
shillings

Item I give and bequeath unto my Daughter Lydia Browne twenty shillings

Item I give & bequeath to my Daughter hannah Bosworth twenty shillings

Item I give and bequeath unto my Daughter Ruth Cushman twenty shillings

Item I give to my Grandchild Elizabeth howland The Daughter of my son John
howland twenty shillings

Item my will is That these legacyes Given to my Daughters, be payed by my
exequitrix in such species as shee thinketh meet;

Item I will and bequeath unto my loveing wife Elizabeth howland, my Debts
and legacyes being first payed my whole estate: vis: lands houses goods
Chattles; or any thing else that belongeth or appertaineth unto mee,
undisposed of be it either in Plymouth Duxburrow or Middlbery or any other
place whatsoever; I Doe freely and absolutly give and bequeath it all to my
Deare and loveing wife Elizabeth howland whom I Doe by these prsents, make
ordaine and Constitute to be the sole exequitrix of this my Last will and
Testament to see the same truely and faithfully prformed according to the
tenour therof; In witness whereof I the said John howland senir have
heerunto sett my hand and seale the aforsaid twenty ninth Day of May, one
thousand six hundred seaventy and two 1672

Signed and sealed in the

prsence of Samuel ffuller John Howland

William Crow And a seale

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Mayflower Web Pages. Caleb Johnson © 1997286


“John Howland, who was born about 1594, came as a servant of John Carver, but as there is no record of his residence in Leyden he is credited to London for the reason that Carver was in England for some considerable time before the sailing of the Mayflower and undoubtedly obtained the serviced of Howland in that city prior to the departure from England. The Howland ancestry is probably of Essex origin. The will of Humphrey Howland, citizen and draper of St. Swithin’s, London, in 1646, mentions his brothers, John and Arthur, which are known Christian names of this family in New England, at the date of the will. There was a John Howland taxed at Canfield Parva, Essex, 1623, and the name also occurs earlier at Newport Pagnall in the same county. In London a John Howland was living in the parish of St. Mary, Whitechapel, in 1596, and in 1600 another John belonged to the parish of St. Botolph, Billingsgate. Jeffrey Howland was taxed in 1625 in the parish of St. Botolph, Aldgate. These parishes are all close to or part of the Pilgrim quarter of London.”367

“In the Plymouth ChR 1:147, Rev. John Cotton said of him, ‘He was a good old disciple & had bin sometime a magistrate here, a plaine-hearted christian’. 271

“The following tables comprise the two earliest tax lists of the Colony of New Plymouth that can be found. the first, taken 2 Jan., 1632-3, has never appeared in print; the second, being for the year 1633-4, was printed in the first volume of Hazard’s valuable collection of State Papers. . .
1) John Howland 00: 18: 00 . . .
2) John Howland 01: 04: 00 368

“Col. Chester’s investigations disprove this [that John Howland’s grandfather married Emma Revell], and show further the extraordinary fact, that the surname Howland is found in no other county in England than Essex, and originally in no other locality in that county except at Newport, Wicken, and their immediate vicinity. . . The head of the first line was John Howland of Newport Pond in the county of Essex. His son John (2) Howland, the citizen and salter, has been already mentioned, born in Newport Pond, married Anne, daughter of John Greenway of Winton, Co. Norfolk. . . .Several of his sons attained eminence, the most notable of whom were: . . His son John (4) Howland is the one which has been hitherto considered as identical with John Howland of the Mayflower; but as Mr. Chester conslusively proves, the former died unmarried and was buried in England. . . .Lastly, Col. Chester mentions a family of Howland composed of Humphrey Howland, citizen and draper of London, whose will was proved July 10, 1646. George Howland of St. Dunstans in the East, London, Arthur Howland, John Howland, and Henry Howland. These three brothers in the order named wer in 1646 to have pounds 8, 4, and 4 out of the debt due to the testator by Mr. Ruck of New England. This points conclusively to Arthur and Henry Howland of the Plymouth Colony, and proves that they had a brother John Howland, who can be no other than John Howland of the Mayflower.”369

“”For many years John Howland lived on Leyden Street (Plymouth) and on the four-acre plot which was granted to him and his family at the land division of 1623, which was on what is now called Watson’s Hill where Massasoit camped with his followers in April, 1621. February 2nd, 1637-8, John Howland exchanged with John Jenney three acres of this land, paying him 85 pounds besides, for the house, barn and out-buildings at Rocky Nook, with its uplands and five acres of adjoining meadow. This land bordered on the shore, probably in the vicinity of the Fishing Rocks. The cellar holes of his house and two out-buildings can be seen on a little hill on the east side of Howland’s Lane, easily distinguished by one large hornbeam tree which stands on the top of the hill. The Pilgrim John Howland Society through the generosity of some of its loyal members, purchased in 1920 about four acres of land which had been the site of the home where John Howland and his wife Elizabeth lived from 1638 until his death in 1673. Four of their youngest children - Ruth, Hannah, Joseph and Isaac, were born at the Rocky Nook home. On the top of the hill, the Society has erected as a memorial a large block of roughly squared Quincy granity, seven feet high, five feet broad and three feet thick, bearing on one polished surface a finely carved representation of the Mayflower, and the inscription:
‘Here Stood the Home of
JOHN HOWLAND
and his wife
ELIZABETH TILLEY HOWLAND
from 1638 until his death February 23, 1673
Both Were Passengers In the Ship
“MAYFLOWER”
In grateful remembrance this land has been
bought by their descendants, and this memorial
erected upon the 300th anniversary of their
landing at Plymouth, Mass.
1620-1920’ “370

“John Howland was a much respected and honored leader in the church at Plymouth. The Rev. John Cotton told how at his ordination as pastor in 1669 ‘the aged Mr. Howland was appointed by the church to joyne in imposition of hands.’ And when Howland died at the age of 80 Cotton praised him as a ‘good old disciple’ and ‘a plain hearted Christian.’ Another leader eulogized him as a ‘godly man and an ancient professor in the ways of Christ.’ “371

“John Howland was put in charge of the trading post [at Kennebec] and in 1634 he and John Alden were the magistrates in authority there.”

“Apparently the only record of John Howland being in Maine is the deposition about the April 1634 incident where Moses Talbot of Plymouth and John Hocking of Piscataway were shot and killed. At that time John Howland was in charge of the fur trading post at Kennebec (now in Maine) (The Mayflower Descendant, [hereafter MD], 2:10-11, see below; Plymouth Colony PR, 1:25). Governor Bradford, in his account of the incident, mentions ‘now [April] was the season for trade,’ perhaps implying they were only there in the Spring. He also mentions ‘their house,’ seeming to imply there was only one house (Samuel Eliot Morison, ed., Of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 by William Bradford, 1952, 263). John Howland, Moses Talbot, John Irish, Thomas Savory, and William Reynolds were the Plymouth men at the trading post. John Howland’s stay in Kennebec was probably quite brief. On 2 January 1633/4 JohnHowland was one of the men chosen to do the rating for the 27 March 1634 tax list (Nathaniel Shurtleff and David Pulsifer, eds., Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, 1855-1861, reprinted 1968 [hereafter PCR], 1:26). Obviously he was in Plymouth at that time. As an Assistant, he attended the 3 March 1634/5 court (PCR, 1:33). On 2 March 1635/6 he was one of the men who viewed some land in Plymouth Colony (PCR, 1:39). On 14 March 1635/6 he was one of the men who representated the ‘Duxborrow side’ in a meeting (PCR, 1:41). He was on a jury in Plymouth 7 June 1636 (PCR, 1:42). On 5 Oct. 1636 he acquired George Kenrick as a servant for one year (PCR, 1:44). On 7 Jue 1637 he represented the town of ‘Ducksborrow’ (PCR, 1:61). Clearly he was in Plymouth Colony a few months before the ‘Hocking Incident’ and he was actively involved in Plymouth Colony affairs in the years following the incident, indicating he ay not have returned to Kennebec after the ‘Hocking Incident.’”372

“There is much we do not know, but, based on Plymouth Colony records, it would seem John Howland was one of the first to settle in that part of Plymouth Colony which would become Duxbury, and lived there until shortly before 2 April 1640, when he sold his house and land in ‘Duxborrow’ to William kemp (PCR, 12:56). He had purchased a house and land in Plymouth 2 February 1638/9 from John Jenney (PCR, 12:41), and he was clearly living in Plymouth by 1 June 1641 when he was one of the committee for Plymouth (PCR, 2:16). The land he bought was in that part of Plymouth called Rocky Nooke. It is unclear whether he moved back to Plymouth in 1639 or 1640. In summary, if John Howland made more than one known trip to Maine, it almost surely would have been for fur trading. His residence was always Plymouth or Duxbury, and that is where his wife Elizabeth and the children surely lived. [Note: In the ‘First Known Pilgrim Settlers in Each State and Canadian Province’ section of The Mayflower Quarterly, it is stated that John and Elizabeth Howland were at Kennebeck River in 1628 (MQ, 57:290). The Piilgrims did not have the Kennebeck patent in 1628 and there is no record of anyone from Plymouth Colony in Kennebec in 1628]. The deposition concerning the incident at Kennebec was published in The Mayflower Descendant, 2:10-11 . . . It would be interesting to know who made the deposition. If it were John Howland, one would think it would say ‘I’ instead of his name. The handwriting seems to be Edward Winslow’s, so perhaps he is making the deposition. The other possibility is John Alden, who arrived with supplies shortly after the incident (and was jailed in Boston on the way back even though he was not involved ” [text of deposition to be entered] 372

“According to early maps, ‘Kenibec’, and later the site of the Pilgrim trading post itself, were apparently located in the lower Kennebec River and included what is now called the Sassanoa River. . . .The ‘family there’, at the trading post, referred to by Governor Bradford, could have been the family of John Howland, according to my personal belief. John Howland was placed in charge of the trading post for about ten years, starting about 1629, and some of his children may have been born there. (They were not recorded in Plymouth records). In 1639 John Howland moved back to Kingston and, for purposes of comparison with the artifacts uncovered in our present reserch on the Kennebec, we have the benefit of archaeological finds at his homesite in Kingston, as well as at the John Alden site in Duxbury.” 373

“This bronze tablet on a boulder, overlooking the bay shore [at First Encounter Beach] reads:
‘On This Spot
Hostile Indians
Had Their
First Encounter
December 8, 1620
Old Style
With
Myles Standish, John Carver, William Bradford, John Tilley, Edward Winslow, John Howland, Edward Tilley, Richard Warren, Stephen Hopkins, Edward Dotey, John Allerton, Thomas English, Master Mate Clark, Master Gunner Chopin and Three Sailors of the Mayflower Company
Provincetown Tercentenary Commission 1620-1920.’ “374

Photo of tombstone taken by Barbara Fleming August, 1997 on file:
“Here ended the Pilgrimage of
JOHN HOWLAND
who died February 23, 1672/3,
age above 80 years.
He married Elizabeth daughter of
JOHN TILLEY
who came with him in the
Mayflower Dec. 1620.
From them are descended a
numerous posterity.
‘Hee was a godly man and an ancient
professor in the wayes of Christ. Hee was
one of the first comers into this land and
was the last man that was left of those
that came over in the Shipp called the
Mayflower that lived in Plymouth.’
Plymouth Records”260

Sign at Howland House, photo taken by Barbara Fleming August, 1997, on file.
“HOWLAND
HOUSE
The last house left in
PLYMOUTH whose
walls have heard the
voices of Mayflower
Pilgrims.
1667” 260

Photo taken by Barbara Fleming in Rocky Nook, MA, August, 1997, on file:
“HERE STOOD THE HOME OF JOHN HOWLAND
AND HIS WIFE
ELIZABETH TILLEY HOWLAND
FROM 1638 UNTIL HIS DEATH FEB. 23, 1673
BOTH WERE PASSENGERS IN THE SHIP ‘MAYFLOWER’
IN GRATEFUL REMEMBRANCE, THIS LAND HAS BEEN BOUGHT
BY THEIR DESCENDANTS AND THIS MEMORIAL ERECTED
UPON THE 300TH ANNIVERSERY OF THEIR LANDING
AT PLYMOUTH MASS.
1620-1920”260

2 postcards of interior of Howland House, Plymouth and one postcard of exterior on file of Barbara Fleming:
“Built 1667 by Jabez Howland and lived in by his father, the Pilgrim John Howland. Restored by the Pilgrim John Howland Society.”

Monument at #16 Leyden Street near Main Street , Plymouth, MA visited by Barbara Fleming, August, 1997:
“On this lot
Stood the first house
of the Mayflower Pilgrim
John Howland
The Pilgrim John Howland Society
1978”

“This will of Humphrey Howland has always been interesting because i it he mentions his brothers, Arthur, John and Henry in New England and later when it was discovered in the Draper’s Records that Humphrey was the son of Henry Howland of Fen Stanton,then we, also, knew the name of John Howland’s father. This will is hard to find in print in its entirety so recently we secured a photostatic copy as it appears today in London.” Will to be entered. Includes “Item I give unto my brother ARthur Howland Eight pound out of the debt owing to me by Mr. Ruck of New England. And to my brother John Howland four pound out of the same debt. And to my brother Henry Howland four pound out of the said debt. But in case the said debt shalbe received in my life time then shaid three legacies payable out of the same to be void.” 375

“Normally, instructions were left for the division of all the immovable property upong surviving children after the death of the wife. John Howland, however, went further in leaving his wife, Elizabeth Tilley, apart from specified legacies of land, money, and debts that had to be settled, ‘ lands houses goods Chattles; or any thing else that belongeth or appertaineth to me, udisposed of be it either in Plymouth, Duxbury or Middlebury or any other place whatsoever.’ This was all given ‘freely and absolutely,’ which meant that Elizabeth could dispose of it exactly as she wished. She was also made his sole executrix, following the common pattern in the colony, despite the fact that they had mature sons.” 301

“The oldest volume of the Plymouth Colony Records is entitled
‘Plimouths great Book of Deeds of Lands
Enrolled: from Ano 1627 to Ano 1651:’
On pages 50-57 of this book is entered the record of the Division of Cattle which was made June 1, 1627, new style:
‘1627.
At a publique court held the 22th of May it was concluded by the whole Companie, that the cattell wch were the Companies, to wit, the Cowes & the Goates should be equall devided to all the psonts of the same company & soe kept untill the expiration of ten yeares after the date above written. & that every one should well and sifficiently pvid for there owne pt under penalty of forfeiting the same.
That the old stock with halfe th increase should remaine for comon use to be devided at thend of the said terme or otherwise as ocation falleth out, & the other halfe to be their owne for ever.
Uppon wch agreement they were equally devided by lotts soe as the burthen of keeping the males then beeing should be borne for common use by those to whose lot the best Cowes should fall & so the lotts fell as followeth. thirteene psonts being pportioned to one lot.

4. The fourth lot fell of John Howland & his company
Joyned to him his wife
2 Elizabeth Howland
3 John Howland Junor
4 Desire Howland
5 William Wright
6 thomas Morton Junor
7 John Alden
8 Prissilla Alden
9 Elizabeth Alden
10 Clemont Briggs
11 Edward Dolton
12 Edward holdman
13 Joh. Alden
To this lot fell one of the 4 heyfers Came in the Jacob Called Raghorne. ‘ “376

“ August 1643. The names of all the males that are able to beare armes from XVI yeares old to 60 yeares wthin the seuerall Touneships.
Plymouth. . .
John Howland Sen” 332

“The second site to be excated following James Hall’s early work on the Standish site [was] that of John Howland. The project was undertaken in 1937 by an architect, Sidney Strickland . . . Strickland had a title search carried out, and there is no question that the property was lived on by John Howland . . .Howland acquired the property from John Jenney in 1638, who had already built a house there. . . .The Howland sites are located on a twenty-one-acre parcel of land, situated on both sides of Howland’s Lane in Rocky Nook, Kingston, Massachusetts. ” Some details of this and later excavations, including maps, to be entered. 301

“The most reasonable accounting for the Howland complex is as follows. Upon acquiring the property in 1638, John Howland occupied the house constructed by John Jenney until he built a more elaborate house (Structure 1) about mid-century. There is no evidence that the house burned. Upon his return from military service in 1676, Lieutenant Joseph Howland erected a new house (Structure 3) opposite that which belonged to his father, and where his widowed mother, Elizabeth Tilley Howland, still lived. Elizabeth died at the home of her daughter, Lydia Browne, in Swansea in December 1687. There is no record of when she moved to Swansea, but her will was drawn up in Bristol County in 1686 and she named her son-in-law, James Browne, and her son Jabez Howland as executors, so she had certainly left the Rocky Nook property by that date. Whether Joseph Howland ever occupied the house left to him by his father (Structure 1) we will not know. Structure 2, near Structure 3, could have been the root cellar of an outbuilding associated with the house. Such cellars are known from the period and should this be the case, if Structure 4 is indeed the cellar of a house built by James Howland, all structures are accounted for.” Details of some Howland artifacts to be entered. 301

“John Howland . . . died in 1673 at an age of’above eighty years.’ In the Plymouth Register of Births, Marriages, and deaths, it is recorded that John Howland Sr. died on February 23, 1672, and that he lived until ‘he attained above eighter years in the world’ (PCR 8:34). On March 4, 1672/73, Elizabeth (Tilley) Howland was granted letters of administration to administer the estate of Mr. John Howland Sr. of Plymouth, ‘late deceased’ (PCR 5:110).” 301

“The following list, containing, in part, the names of those in the colony who were taxed by order of the Court, March, 1633, will show the comparative wealth of some of them.
Mr. John Howland £1 4s [listed 9th]” 377

“1637. Mr. John Howland and Mr. Jno. Brewster were appointed for the town of Duxbury, to attend to the preservation of the beaver trade.” 377

“The brothers, John, Arthur and Henry Howland, apparently came to the Colony through the powerful influence of the Company of Drapers in London, with whom their brother Humphrey was associated. This Company of Merchants helf a large block of stock in the Virginia Company, and were anxious to send a high type of settler to the colonies. Members of the Brewster family were also associated with the Draper’s Company of London.” 275

From Plymouth Colony Deeds:
[p. 169] 1656 ‘A writing apointed to bee Recorded
Wheras there was a Diference fell out betwixt John howland senir Thomas Bourne and John Dingley about the Range of a pcell of marsh meddow lying in Marshfeild and not eazye to bee knowne;
These are therefore to put an end to the aforsaid Diference; It is agreed by and between the said John howland senir Thomas Bourne and John Dingley senir: that the line or Range shall begin att the beach next the sea upon a west line sett by a compas to a homacke in the marsh where there lyes an olf Ceader tree there being noe other nor no more trees neare next to the great Lland bu that onely And from the aforsaid Basse creeke To which agreement all the aforsaid pties have freely assented unto as abovesaid; alsoe that this agreement bee put upon REcord both att Marshfeild and the court booke att Plymouth to avoid all further Diference for time to Come about the prmises; in witnesse wherof wee the said John howland senir: Thomas Bourne and John Dingley have put to our hands this fourth of May 1655
in the prsense John howland
of Myles Standish Thomas Bourne
John Dingley” 378

“A 38-foot shallop completed an 11-day journey Thursday that recreated the first trade voyage up the Kennebec River by the Pilgrims in 1628. The Elizabeth Tilley, a replica of the boat used for the original trip, set sail July 28 from Plymouth, Mass., and stopped at 10 ports along the way, including Kennebunkport, Portland and Bath. The trip replicated the voyage of John Howland from Plymouth to Cushnoc, the original name for the Augusta landing point. Shallops were common sailing and rowing boats in 16th- and 17th century Europe. Jay Adams, director of Old Fort Western, which is hosting the shallop’s stay in Augusta, said the Pilgrims made the voyage to help pay off debts they took on to finance their trip from England to America. To do so, Pilgrims like Howland explored trading Plymouth corn for beaver pelts from the Kennebec-area Indians, Adams said. Howland made an exploratory foray up the Kennebec in 1625, and three years later the Pilgrims set up a trading post at Cushnoc that operated off and on into the 1660s.” 379

“Howland Historic Sidewalk Marker
Dedicated in September 1978, and reads: ‘On This Lot Stood the First House of the Mayflower Pilgrim JohnHowland, 1978.’ Clinton W. Sellew did the research and was responsible for this very important marker. It is located at 16 Leyden Street, Plymouth>’ 380

“John Howland

3 March 1672/1673

Plymouth Colony Wills 3(1):49-54

Mayflower Descendant 2(1900):70-77

#P204

[p.51] A trew Inventory of all the goods Cattles and Chattles and Lands of Mr John howland lately Deceased taken and aprised by Elder Thomas Cushman Serjeant Tinkham and Willam Crow the third of March Anno Dom 1672 and exhibited to the Court held att Plymouth the fift of March 1672/73 on the oathe of mrs Elizabeth howland widdow as followeth

In the outward or fier Rome L s d

Impr I muskett 1 long Gun 1 Cutlas 1 belt, att 02 10 00

Item 1 Chimney Iron barr 2 paire of pot hangers 00 09 00

Item 1 fier shovell 1 paire of tonges 1 paire of Cob irons 00 07 00

Item 1 frying pan 1 smoothing box and Irons 00 05 06

Item 1 adds 2 axes 1 mortising axe 1 hoe 00 11 06

Item 3 augers 1 pikaxe 00 05 00

Item 1 hammer 1 paire of Pincers 1 Drawing knife 1 spliting kniffe 00 02 00

Item 2 Cow bells 1 old Chaine, and Divers peeces of old Iron Aules & a box 00 05 00

Item 2 presshookes 1 paire of sheep sheers 2 sickles 00 04 00

Item 1 pruning Instrument 1 peece of steele 00 02 00

Item 2 staples 1 peec of a Chaine 00 01 06

Item 2 staples 4 peeces of a chaine 00 01 06

Item 1 Dagger three knives 2 paire of sissers 1

paire of stilliyards 00 06 00

Item 1 padlock 1 thwart saw 3 wedges 1 ploughshare 00 10 00

Item 3 Iron potts 1 paire of pothookes 1 Iron kettle 01 06 00

Item 2 brasse kittles 1 warming pan 01 15 00

Item 1 skimer 1 ladle 1 sawsse pan 1 brasse skillet 00 04 06

Item 6 pewter platters 3 bason 3 smale pewter thinges 01 07 00

Item a quart pot 1 candlesticke 1 beer bowle 00 05 00

Item 3 porringers 1 Dram cupp 1 Tunell 00 03 00

Item 2 salt sellers 2 chamber potts 7 spoones 00 10 00

Item 1 Iron candlesticke 1 latten pott 1 Ironsockettd 00 02 00

Item 1 shove Iron 2 washers 2 old sickles and old Iron 00 02 00

Item 4 earthen potts 1 pan and 1 Jugg and earthen ware 00 02 00

Item 1 hatchell 00 05 00

Item 1 great bible and Annotations on the 5 bookes

of Moses 01 00 00

Item mr Tindalls workes mr Wilsons workes 7 more bookes 01 00 00

Item 3 wheeles 1 cherne 1 straning Dish 00 13 00

Item 3 cheesfatts 11 trayes 1 kimnell 00 05 06

Item 3 pailes six tubbs 1 ladle 1 cheese ladder 00 14 06

Item trenchers Roleing pins and some smale things 00 02 00

Item 3 Chaires stooles old barrells 3 Cushens 00 07 00

Items 3 beer vessells 00 04 00

16 06 00

[p.52] In the Inward Rome or bedchamber

his wearing appaarell

Item 3 hatts 00 16 00

Item 3 great coates 02 00 00

Item 1 suite of cloth 03 00 00

Item 1 serge suite 01 10 00

Item 1 homespon suite and wastcoate 00 15 00

Item 1 suite 00 12 00

Item old clothes 00 06 00

Item 2 red wastcoates 01 05 00

Item 6 paire of Stockens 01 00 00

Item 1 Jackett and one paire of Mittens 00 13 06

Item 1 holland shirt 00 12 00

Item 4 shirts 00 18 00

Item 4 holland capps 4 Dowlis capps and 4 other capps 00 10 00

Item 2 silke Neckclothes 00 07 06

Item 1 paire of bootes 2 paire of shooes 01 00 00

15 11 00

In the said Rome

Item 4 remnants of clothe 00 19 00

Item 2 yards of serge 00 10 00

Item 3 yards 1/2 of carsey 01 15 00

Item 4 Dozen of buttons 1/2 10 skines of silke 3 yards of Manchester 00 04 00

Item 17 yards of fflax and cotton cloth att 02 11 00

Item 1 peece of fine Dowlis 00 08 06

Item 1 remnant of licye woolsey 00 08 00

Item about 16 yards of several remnants of homade Cloth vallued att 03 10 00

10 05 06

In the aforsaid Inward Roome

Item 1 pound of woolen yerne 00 03 00

Item 1 paire of sheets 01 05 00

Item 2 paire of sheets 01 10 00

Item 1 paire of sheets 1 halfe sheet 01 05 00

Item 1 paire of sheets att 00 10 00

Item 1 paire of holland pillowbeers 00 08 09

Item 2 paire of pillowbeers 00 15 00

Item 3 pillowbeers 00 06 00

Item 1 Table cloth and 7 napkins 00 13 00

Item 10 towells 00 07 00

Item 4 smale Table clothes 00 04 00

Item 2 smale pillowbeers 00 01 6

Item 1 Table and 2 formes 00 10 0

Item 1 cobbert and a framed chaire 00 08 0

Item 4 chest and 1 settle 01 00 00

Item 1 bedsted and box and coard 00 12 0

Item 1 seifting trough and 2 seives 00 04 0

Item 1 glass 2 glass bottles 2 earthen potts 00 03 0

Item 1 wineglasse gallipotts and spectacles 00 02 0

Item 2 paire of coards one bed cord 1 fishing line 00 05 06

Item some hobnailes & twelvepeny nailes 00 02 00

Item 5 peeces of Dresed lether one peece of taned lether 00 06 00

Item a smale prcell of hemp and hopps 00 02 00

Item 3 or 4 basketts 1 brush 1 file 00 01 00

[p. 53] Item Cotton woole about a Dozen pound 00 12 00

Item 3 old caske 00 02 00

Item 1 feather bed and bolster 3 great & 2 smale pillowes 05 00 00

Item 5 blanketts 03 15 00

Item 1 rugg and one blankett 01 15 00

Item 1 blankett att 00 15 00

Item in reddy mony 01 19 00

Item a smale prcell of powder shott and bulletts 00 03 00

Item 1 Inkhorn 00 00 06

24 14 03

In the uper Roome or Chamber

Item 1 feather bed bolster and pillow 04 00 00

Item 2 blanketts and a Rugg 01 05 00

Item 1 woole or fflocke bed 2 feather bolsters and a pillow 02 00 00

Item 2 blanketts 00 15 00

Item 1 bedstead cord and box 00 10 00

Item 1 prcell of sheep woole about fifteen pound 00 15 00

Item a prcell of feathers about 15 or 16 pound 00 15 00

Item a cupple of old hogsheds and an old candlesticke 00 02 00

Item 20 bushells or therabouts of Indian corne 03 00 00

Item 4 bushells of Mault or therabouts 00 16 00

Item 4 bushells of Rye or therabouts 00 14 00

Item 6 bushells of wheat or therabouts 01 07 00

Item 2 bushells and an halfe or barly or therabouts 00 10 00

Item 2 ffliches of bacon and 1 third of a barrell of porke 02 00 00

Item 1 halfe of a barrell of beeff and 2 empty barrells 00 15 00

Item 15 pound of Tallow and Candles 00 07 06

Item 34 pound of butter and lard 00 17 00

Item 14 pound of sugare 00 03 00

Item 1 halfe hogshed 00 03 00

Item 1 pad 1 pillian 1 bridle 1 sheepskin 00 05 00

Item 6 pound of Tobacco 1 pecke of beans 00 04 00

Item 1 grindstone and handles 1 ffan 00 09 00

Item 8 baggs 15s old Iron 1 shilling 00 16 00

22 14 06

Cattle

Item 2 mares and one colt 03 00 00

Item 4 oxen 4 cowes 24 00 00

Item 2 heiffers and 3 steers of three years old 12 10 00

Item 2 two yeare old heiffers 2 yearling calves 03 10 00

Item 13 swine 04 15 00

Item 45 sheep young and old 15 00 00

Item the one halfe of a paire of Iron bound wheeles and cart and 12 bolts 2 shakles 02 02 06

Item 1 paire of hookes and a staple 00 01 06

Item 1 bullockes hyde 00 14 00

Item a cannooe 00 05 00

00 05 00

65 18 00

{p.54} Debts Due to the Testator

ffrom John Branch of Marshfeild att 2 several pay-ments the sume of 08 00 00

Edward Gray 1 barrell of salt 00 12 00

Item a Debt Due from a frind 00 10 00

09 02 00

Brought from the other side 155 09 03

Sume 164 11 03

Debts owing by the Testator

To Elder Thomas Cushman 00 15 00

To Thomas Cushman Junir 00 05 00

To John Clarke 00 10 06

To Edward Gray 00 08 03

To William Crow 00 02 00

To John Gorum 01 12 00

To two or three smale Debts about 00 02 00

ffunerall Charges 03 08 00

Debts Deducted 07 02 02

The totale of the estate prissed 157 08 08

Wee find that the Testator Died posessed of these severall parcells of Land following;

Impr his Dwelling house with the outhousing uplands and meddow belonging therunt lying att Rockey nooke in the Towne of New Plymouth

Item a prcell of meddow att Jonses river meddow

Item the one halfe of a house and a prcell of meddow and upland belonging therunto lying and being att Colchester in the aforsaid Townshipp;

Item a prcell of meddow and upland belonging therunto; lying neare Joness river bridge in the Towne of Duxburrow

Item one house and 2 shares of a tract of land and meddow that lyeth in the Towne of Middleberry that was purchaced by Captaine Thomas Southward of and from the Indian Sachem Josias Wampatucke

Item 2 Shares of a tract of Land Called the Majors Purchase lying neare Namassakett ponds

pr nos Thomas Cushman senr

Ephraim Tinkam senir

William Crow”313

“An original letter from a genealogist in England, in 1879, mentions ‘the extraordinary fact that I find the surname of Howland in no other county in England than Essex, and originally in no other locality in that county except at Newport and Wicken and their immediate vicinity. Wherever at later periods I have found Howlands in other counties, as Hertfordshire, Surrey, Berks, etc., I have invariably traced them back to Newport and Wicken. It is clear that several families of the name were living there contemporaneously and equally so that they were all in some way connected . . . at the period of the birth of John Howland of the Mayflower, there were living then no less than five John Howlands . . . ‘ In two of these lines, the Howland name terminated in heiresses, one of whom, Elizabeth by name, bequeaathed the Streatham Estates to her husband, the Duke of Bedford, who then acquired the additional title of Baron Howland.” 276

“John Howland of the Mayflower was born in 1592, the son of Henry Howland, of Fen Stanton,m Huntingdonshire (near Newport, County Essex). He had at least four brothers, Arthur, George, Henry, and Humphrey. His brothers Arthur and Henry came to America about 1623/4 and laater joined the Society of Friends. Early records reveal that Arthur, whose home was in Marshfield, was fined many time for ‘pmitting of a Quaker’s meeting in his house.’ When he refused to pay the fines, he was sent to jail. Henry was fined for entertaining Quakers, at the Court of March, 1658.” 276

“In mid-Atlantic, during a violent storm, John Howland was almost drowned when a mountainous wave swept him overboard. Grasping a halyard which was trailing astern of the Mayflwoer, although at first he was several fathoms under water, he finally managed to haul himself to the surfact. He was then rescued, by means of a boathook along with the rope, etc. By November 11, 1620, he had sufficiently recuperated from his oceanic adventure to be the thirteenth signer of the Mayflower Compact. And a few days later, December 6, he was one of the ten chosen to make the third exploration along the shore. On this occasion, they were attacked by the Indians at Eastham, Cape Cod. In Bradford’s History, we learn that the mast of the shallop broke during a sudden squall, and the sail was lost overboard. ‘The weataaher was very cold, and it froze so hard . . . the spray of the sea lighting on their coats, they were as if they had been glazed.’ “ 276

“John Howland was one of governor Carver’s family. Both Governor Carver and his wife were among the fifty Pilgrims who died during the first few months of the struggle for survival at Plymouth. It is believed that John Howland inherited John carver’s estate, as the Carvers had no children of their own. About 1626 John Howland married Elizabeth Tilley, a girl of eighteen. She had come on the Mayflower with her parents, who, like the carvers, were victims of ‘the sickness’ during the first winter. She d. 21 Dec. 1687, at Swansea. In 1626, John Howland was one of those (including Bradford, Brewster, Standish, etc.) who assumed the Colony’s debt to the Merchant adventurers, £1800. At least as early as 1633-35, he was an Assistant or member of the Governor’s Council, and from 1641 to 1670 was frequently a deputy or representative to the General Court. In 1634, he commanded the Pilgrim’ Trading Post at Kennebec (Maine).” 276

“ ‘The 23th of February 1672 Mr. John Howland senir of the Towne of Plymouth Deceased; hee was a Godly man and an ancient professor in the wayes of Christ hee lived untill he attained above eighty eyares in the world, hee was one of the first Comers into this land andproved a usefull Instrument of Good in his place & was thhe last man that was left of those that Came over in the shipp Called the May Flower, that lived in Plymmouth hee was with honor Intered att the Towne of Plymouth on the 25 of February 1672.’ Plymouth Colony Vital Records. The Mayflwoer Descendant, 18:69.” 276

“Although they had deferred to the ‘resolution’ of the partners, in 1635 the Governor (Mr. Prence), Mr. Collier, Mr. Alden, Mr. Brown and Mr Howland were directed ‘by the Court to view that portion of the ground on the north side of the North River and if they find it more beneficial for farms to Scituate than to these parts, then to allot it to them; if not to reserve it.’ They reserved it. ” 381

“With a demand for beaver furs in England, they found that the fur trade with the Indians on the Kennebec River provided them with the opportunity to repay their London investors. Either men of the ‘Old Comers’ signed a lease agreeing to undertake the repayment of this debt for the colony. These eight men would operate the trading posts in Maine: John Howland, Edward Winslow, William Bradford, John Alden, Myles Standish, Isaac Allerton, William Brewster and Thomas Prence. In about twelve years, the industry of this group of ‘Undertakers’ had successfully repaid the debts. . . Exactly where the trading posts were located is difficult to determine. No detailed account of the locations of their daily operations, kept by those men operating the business, have ever been found . . . There are references to five possible locations for the trading posts on the Kennebec River: Arrowsic, Kenebec, Cushnoc, Chushenage, and Winslow.” 382

More details to be entered. 383

“1634.
This year Mr. Thomas Prince was chosen governor of the jurisdiction of New Plimouth. His assistants in government were Mr. William Bradford, Mr. Edward Winslow, Capt. Miles Standish, Mr. William Collier, Mr. John Alden, Mr. John Howland, and Mr. Stephen Hopkins.” 384

“1635.
This year Mr. William Bradford was chosen governor of the jurisdiction of New Plimouth. Mr. Edward Winslow, Mr. Thomas Prince, Mr. William Collier, Capt. Miles Standish, Mr. John Alden, Mr. John Howland, and Mr. Stephen Hopkins, were chosen to be his assistants in government.”384

“The following list of 51 people believed to have been living in December 1621 has been compiled from Eugene A. Stratton and Robert S. Wakefield, ‘A Historical Background for Easly Plymouth Colony Genealogical research, Genealogical Journal 13(winter 1984-5): 145-162:
1. John Alden . .
28. Stephen Hopkins
29. Elizabeth Hopkins
30. Constance Hopkins
31. Giles Hopkins
32. Damaris Hopkins
33. Oceanus Hopkins
34. John Howland . . .
39. Priscilla Mullins . . .
44. Elizabeth Tilley . . .
46. Richard Warren . . . “385
Extension of notes notes for John Howland
“John Howland
John Howland was born in Fenstanton, Huntingdonshire, England, about 1592/3. He died at Plymouth Colony, Massachusetts, February 23, 1672/3. Plymouth Colony records state:
‘The 23th of February Mr. John Howland Senir of the Towne of Plymouth Deceased…Hee lived until hee attained about eighty yeaes in the world…and was the last man that was left of those that Came over in the ship Called the May flower, that lived in Plymouth hee was with honor Intered att the Towne of Plymouth on the 25 of February 1672.’
The John Howland Memorial Stone
Burial Hill, Plymouth, MA
On Burial Hill is a monument to John Howland erected in 1897 with funds raised by Mrs. Joseph Howland. This replaces a stone erected about 1836 by John and Henry Howland of Providence, Rhode Island. The earlier stone was buried under the new one. This earlier stone stated that John Howland’s wife was “a daughter of Governor Carver”, but after the discovery in 1856 of Governor William Bradford’s manuscript Of Plimoth Plantation, it was known that he married Elizabeth Tilley, daughter of John and Joan Tilley who were also passengers of the Mayflower.
John Howland boarded the Mayflower in England in September 1620, arrived in Provincetown Harbor, November 21, 1620 and, although called a man-servant of Governor Carver, he was the thirteenth signer of the Mayflower Compact in Plymouth Harbor on December 21, 1620.
Within a few years he married Elizabeth Tilley, built a house on First Street and gradually as land was allotted to each family, he acquired four acres on Watson’s Hill, Plymouth and considerable acreage in Duxbury. February 2, 1638/9 he bought from John Jenny the property called Rocky Nook (Kingston). Some of this land is still owned by our Society.
He served in the General court of Plymouth as Committeeman in 1637, 1639-1652 and as Deputy 1652, 1659, 1661-1668 and 1670.
He had two brothers, Arthur and Henry who arrived a few years later. Arthur Howland married Margaret Reed, settled in Marshfield and had five children. Sir Winston Churchill, an honorary member of the Pilgrim John Howland Society, was one of his descendants. Henry Howland married Mary (Newland) and lived in Duxbury. They had eight children. Both brothers joined the Society of Friends. For many generations the descendants of these two men remained Quakers, many settled around Dartmouth, MA where they became very prosperous.
TIMELINE
1620 – John Howland and Elizabeth arrive on the Mayflower.
1632 – They went to Maine.
1638/9 – Bought the Rocky Nook farm.
1670 – Jabez Howland bought the house at Plymouth. John and Elizabeth winter there.
1672/3 – John Howland died in the Plymouth home of his son.
Circa 1675 – The Rocky Nook Farm house burned to the ground. Elizabeth makes her home with Jabez' family.
1680/1 – Jabez sells the Plymouth house. Elizabeth signed the deed and moved to Swansea to live with her daughter, Lydia Brown.
1687 – Elizabeth Tilley Howland died and was buried in the Brown Family plot.”356


“John Howland and Courage on the Kennebec in Maine
By Robert F Huber Sept 1999
John Howland’s character was forged by danger and death and the result was courage on the Kennebec.
The young man from Fenstanton left England in 1620 as a Mayflwoer passenger and promptly showed his quick wit in a perilous situation when he was swept overboard during a violent storm and was able to grab some trailing halyards and hold on until rescued. When the Pilgrims landed on Cape Cod, Howland was among those who explored the strange land, braving terrible cold and Indian attack.
During the killer winter of 1620-21 he saw death deal a steady hand as half of the 102 settlers died. His inner strength helped him survive and do his part in caring for the sick and burying the dead.
And when his employer, Gov. John Carver, died of sunstroke Howland assumed the responsibility of managing his household. He soon became a leader in the colony and was placed in charge of Plymouth’s trading post in Maine. This was the colony’s most important assignment for the furs he got from the Indians went a long way in repaying the Pilgrim debt to the merchant adventurers who had financed the journey to the New World.
It was on the Kennebec River where Howland displayed raw courage when the fur-trade lifeline was threatened.
The Plymouth Pilgrims were always eager to trade with the Indians and was early as 1625 they sent a boatload of corn up the Kennebec.
Gov. William Bradford wrote that “God preserved them and gave them good success for they brought home 700 beaver, besides some other furs.” This expedition was made by Edward Winslow and some of the “old Standards” or first comers.
In 1627 Isaac Allerton was sent to London to secure a patent for the Kennebec and the Pilgrims then erected a trading house on the river at Cuchenoc in what is not Augusta. This patent was superseded by another in January 1630 under which Plymouth received exclusive jurisdiction over the Kennebec within a limit of 15 miles down the river from the falls where they had built a house.
The Shallop Elizabeth Tilley
In their trading they first used a shallop but soon found they needed a larger boat, so the Pilgrims cut the shallop in half, added six feet in the middle and decked it over. This vessel, called a barque, was used for the next seven years.
John Howland was put in charge of the trading post and in 1634 he and John Alden were the magistrates in authority there.
Unfortunately, Pilgrims and Indians were not the only ones on the Kennebec. Agents of Lord Say and Seal and Lord Brooke also were on hand to make a fast pound or two.
Now enter the hero and the villain.
One April day John Howland (the hero, of course) found John Hocking (the villain) riding at anchor within the area claimed by Plymouth. Hocking was from the nearby Piscataqua Plantation. Howland went up to him in their “barke” and politely asked Hocking to weigh anchors and depart.
Apparently Hocking used some strong language and the two exchanged some words not recorded, but the result of the conversation was that Hocking would not leave and Howland would not let him stay.
Howland then sent three of his men—John Irish, Thomas Savory and William Rennoles (Reynolds?) — to cut the cables of Hocking’s boat. They severed one but the strong current prevented them from cutting the other cable so Howland called them back and ordered Moses Talbott to go with them.
The four men were able to maneuver their canoe to the other cable, but Hocking was waiting on deck armed with a carbine and a pistol in his hand. He aimed first at Savory and then as the canoe swished about he put his gun almost to Talbott’s head.
Seeing this, Howland called to Hocking not to shoot his man but to “take himself as his mark.” Saying his men were only doing what he had ordered them to do. If any wrong was being done it was he that did it, Howland shouted. Howland called again for Hocking to aim at him.
What courage!
Hocking, however, would not even look at Howland and shortly afterwards Hocking shot Talbott in the head and then took up his pistol intending to shoot another of Howland’s men. Bradford continues the story in his history of Plymouth:
Howland’s men were angered and naturally feared for their lives so one of the fellows in the canoe raised his musket and shot Hocking “who fell down dead and never spake word.”
The surviving poachers must have skedaddled for home where they soon wrote to the bigwigs in England but failed to tell the whole truth including the fact that Hocking had killed a Plymouth man first. The lords “were much offended” and must have made known their anger.
The hocking affair did have severe international implications. Colonists feared that King Charles might use it as an excuse for sending over a royal governor to rule all New England. This was a real threat for early in 1634 the king had created a Commission for Regulating Plantations with power to legislate in both civil and religious matters and even to revoke charters.
Not long after the killings Plymouth sent a ship into the territory of Massachusetts Bay and authorities there quickly seized john Alden who was aboard the ship. Alden was imprisoned although he had no direct part in the Kennebec tragedy.
When Alden was jailed Plymouth was quite obviously upset for Massachusetts Bay had no jurisdiction over the Kennebec area or over citizens of Plymouth. This was not of their business.
Plymouth dispatched Capt. Myles Standish to Boston to present letters explaining the situation and Gov. Thomas Dudley quickly freed Alden, and after a later court hearing all blame was laid to Hocking. The matter was settled.”386

“John and Elizabeth Howland
Mayflower passengers John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley were married in 1623/4. John was about thirty-one and Elizabeth was about sixteen. They spent their entire lives in Plymouth, and between them participated in every aspect of the Pilgrim experience from its beginning in Leiden up to the merger of the Bay and Plymouth colonies. This article is a retrospective summary of their lives and their contribution to Plymouth.
John was born about 1592 to Henry and Margaret Howland of Fenstanton, nine miles northeast of Cambridge, England. Elizabeth Tilley was the youngest of several children born to John and Joan (Hurst) Tilley. She was baptized in 1607 in Henlow, Huntingdonshire, England. John Tilley and his family, and the family of his brother Edward Tilley and wife Ann (Cooper), were members of John Robinson's congregation in Leiden.
John Howland, John and Joan and Elizabeth Tilley, and Edward and Ann Tilley were passengers on the Mayflower. John Howland had at least five siblings. Arthur (d. 1675), his older brother, arrived in Plymouth after 1627 while Henry (d. 1671), his younger brother, arrived as early as 1633. Arthur Howland soon moved to Marshfield where he became a major landholder. Henry Howland was one of the original settlers of Duxbury and was chosen constable in 1635.
John Howland was pitched overboard
Painting by Mike Haywood
At age twenty-eight John Howland was recruited in England by John Carver to join his household and be his assistant in moving the Leiden congregation to America. Also included in Carver's household were a servant-girl Desire Minter (age fifteen), a servant-lad, William Lantham, and several other servants. During a storm in the crossing, John Howland was pitched overboard, but luckily was able to catch hold of a halliard and was hauled back aboard the Mayflower. John was the thirteenth signer of the Compact. While in Cape Cod Harbor, John Howland, John and Edward Tilley and others explored the New England coast for several days and chose Plymouth to begin a settlement.
Elizabeth Tilley's parents and aunt and uncle died in the winter of 1621. John Carver took Elizabeth in as one of his household. After John and Katherine Carver died in the spring of 1621, John Howland became the head of the household containing Elizabeth Tilley, Desire Minter, and William Lantham. The living arrangements for this household are unknown. After John married Elizabeth, he received four acres of land as the head of household in the 1623 Division of Land.
Desire Minter was the daughter of William and Sarah Minter, members of the Leiden congregation. Desire's father died in 1618, and she joined John Carver's family. Her mother remarried in 1622, and her new parents established an endowment that Desire would inherit at the age of twenty-one. After a few years in Plymouth, Desire returned to England to assume her inheritance. John and Elizabeth Howland were very fond of Desire and named their first child Desire in her honor. They had ten children: Desire, John, Hope, Elizabeth, Lydia, Hannah, Joseph, Jabez, Ruth and Isaac.
In 1625 John Howland accompanied Edward Winslow on an expedition of the Kennebec River in Maine to explore trading opportunities with the Indians. In 1626 John was asked to be one of the "Undertakers" to buy out the colony's debt to the "Merchant Adventurers" who had invested in the venture to establish Plymouth Colony.
In the 1627 division of Cattle agreement, John Howland acquired twenty acres for each member of his household. In addition, the colonists were organized in "companies" of thirteen members each. The livestock of the colony was divided equally among the companies. Listed in John's "company" were John and Elizabeth and their two children, John and Priscilla Alden and their two children, and five unattached men.
Isaac Allerton (1586-1658/9) negotiated a patent that granted Plymouth the exclusive right to trade with the Indians and to establish a trading station on the Kennebec River. In 1627 Governor Bradford placed John Howland in charge. In 1628 a trading station was built at Cushnoc (now called Augusta) on the east side of the Kennebec River. A year later, a permanent log-house was built, and Howland, then Assistant Governor, was asked to manage the trading station. For approximately seven years John Howland was in charge of the station. It is not known if Elizabeth and their family of three children lived at the station permanently or for short periods of time. During the time that John operated the station Elizabeth gave birth to three more children, but it is not known whether she gave birth while she was living at the trading station or in Plymouth.
The trading station in Cushnoc was very successful. The Pilgrims traded corn and manufactured goods with the Indians for beaver, otter and other furs. The proceeds of this trade enabled the Undertakers to settle their debts with the Merchant Adventurers. In 1643 a colony in Piscataqua at the mouth of the Kennebec River under the control of London investors attempted to trade with Indians on the Kennebec River. Howland and men from Plymouth told the Piscataqua men under the command of John Hocking to leave since they were trespassing and the patent granted Plymouth exclusive trading rights. The Piscataqua men refused to pull up anchor and leave, and John Hocking shot and killed one of Howland's men. One of Howland's men returned fire and killed John Hocking. A meeting called by the General Courts of Plymouth and Bay Colony established that the Piscataqua men were trespassers and that Hocking's killing was justified. Following this, the two colonies agreed to honor each other’s patents and to curtail the activities of settlements poaching on these patents. It was feared that if the issue was not resolved satisfactorily, Parliament might appoint a single governor of all New England, which none of the colonies wanted.
In 1633 John (age forty-one) was admitted a freeman in Plymouth. John and Elizabeth acquired land and in time became major landholders in Plymouth and the surrounding towns. For nearly forty years, John Howland was actively involved in the governance of Plymouth through elected or appointed positions, viz. one of the seven Plymouth Assistant Governors—1632-35, 1638-39; one of the four Plymouth Deputies to the General Court for nearly thirty years—1641, 1645, 1647-56, 1658, 1659, 1661-68, 1670; one of the five selectmen of Plymouth—1665-66; one of the Plymouth Assessors—1641, 1644, 1647-51; committee on fur trading—1659; surveyor of highways—1650.
In 1637 John received forty acres of land, and in 1639 he was given a choice of additional land for himself or his heirs around Yarmouth, Dartmouth and Rehoboth. Part of the land he chose was in Yarmouth, which he gave to his son John and daughters Desire and hope and their respective families. In 1639 John purchased land and a house in Rocky Nook, where he spent the rest of his life. Also living in Rocky Nook were Thomas and Mary (Allerton) Cushman and their family.
Quaker missionaries arrived in Plymouth between 1655 and 1662 and attracted a considerable number of converts. Quakers opposed Puritan authority and religious beliefs and practices. They refused to attend church services, would not recognize ministers and magistrates or fidelity oaths, and would not support the church financially. They criticized Puritan beliefs and practices publicly and in such scathing terms as to anger the General Court. Governor Bradford had died in 1657 and was succeeded by Thomas Prence (1600-73), who would not tolerate Quaker criticism and took unusually strong measures to suppress Quaker activities, through fines, whipping, excommunication and expulsion from the colony. In the Bay Colony punishment was more severe, and included hangings.
Quakers wished to separate themselves from the prevailing religious beliefs and practices, just as the Pilgrims had done some fifty years earlier in England. Thus, the Quakers were to Plymouth what the Separatists were to England, except that now the Pilgrims were on the receiving end. Governor Prence and the General Court punished Plymouth residents who attended Quaker services or gave them support and protection.
The families of John Howland's brothers, Arthur and Henry, were two Plymouth families most identified as practicing Quakers. The families ceased attending Plymouth religious services and allowed their homes for the conduct of Quaker meetings. Arthur, Henry and Henry's son Zoeth were called before the General Court in 1657 and fined for using their homes for Quaker meetings. In 1660 Henry was again fined. In 1659 Arthur Jr.'s freeman status was revoked and in 1684 he was imprisoned in Plymouth. Throughout his life, John Howland remained faithful to Separatist belief and practice, but his compassion for Quakers is not known.
John and Elizabeth were highly respected citizens of Plymouth. In 1657 and again in 1664, serious issues concerning members of John Howland's family came before the Court of Governor's Assistants that resulted in judicial sanctions. John Howland was only a deputy for Plymouth to the General Court, and while he did not have to act on these cases personally, there is not way his standing in Plymouth could avoid being affected.
Governor Prence's actions toward Quakers took an ironic twist that can be appreciated by parents today. In 1657 Arthur Howland Jr., an ardent Quaker, was brought before the court. Thomas Prince's daughter and Arthur Howland Jr., fell in love. The relationship blossomed and matrimony seemed inevitable. However, it was illegal and punishable by court sanction for couples to marry without parental consent. Thomas Prence urged Elizabeth to break off the relationship, but to no avail. He then used powers available to him as Governor. Arthur Howland, Jr., was brought before the General Court and fined five pounds for "inveigling of Mistris Elizabeth Prence and making motion of marriage to her, and prosecuting the same contrary to her parents likeing, and without theire mind and will...[and] in speciall that hee desist from the use of any meanes to obtaine or retaine her affections as aforesaid." On July 2, 1667 Arthur Howland, Jr., was brought before the General Court again where he "did sollemly and seriously engage before the Court, that he will wholly desist and never apply himself for the future as formerly he hath done, to Mistris Elizabeth Prence in reference unto marriage." Guess what happened! They were married on December 9, 1667 and in time had a daughter and four sons. Thus a reluctant Thomas Prence acquired a Quaker son-in-law, Quaker grandchildren and innumerable Quaker in-laws of Henry Howland.
The second case involving John Howland's family occurred in 1664 when Ruth Howland (b. 1646), his youngest daughter, was the subject of a morals case brought before the Court of Governor's Assistants. Sexual mores, including chastity before marriage, were issues about which were strict codes of conduct. Ruth Howland fell in love with Thomas Cushman, Jr. (1637-1726), the first son of Plymouth's Ruling Elder Thomas Cushman (1607-91), and Mary (Allerton) Cushman (1616-1699), a Mayflower passenger. In 1664/5 Thomas Jr. was fined five ponds by the Court for carnal behavior "before marriage, but after contract." Once again John Howland was Deputy to the General Court for Plymouth and not involved personally in sentencing. Twenty-five years earlier punishment could have been severe, e.g. excommunication, fines, stocks for women and whipping for men. However, in 1664 harsh physical sentencing had been relaxed, and the social meeting of the parties became a factor in sentencing. In 1664 Thomas Jr. and Ruth were married. In addition to John Howland's embarrassment, Thomas Cushman, Jr. squandered the opportunity to be considered to succeed his father as Ruling Elder. In 1694, Thomas' younger brother Isaac was chosen to succeed his father as Ruling Elder. Thomas Jr. and Ruth remained in Plymouth. Ruth died as a young woman sometime after 1672, and Thomas Jr. married Abigail Fuller in 1679.
The Jabez Howlad House
Plymouth, MA
John Howland died either in his home at Rocky Nook or at his son Jabez' house on February 23, 1672/3 at the age of eighty. He was buried in an unmarked grave in Burial Hill. In 1897, a headstone was erected on Burial Hill by the Howland Society. Elizabeth Howland spent her declining years and died on December 21, 1687 at the age of eighty in the home of her daughter Lydia Brown, in Swansea. Elizabeth is buried in East Providence, Rhode Island, with a memorial marker.
While not political leaders of Plymouth, John and Elizabeth were pillars of the community and played a major part in the colony's governance and development. They lived through every aspect of the Pilgrim experience beginning in Leiden—the Mayflower, the harsh first winter, the Undertakers, the trading station in Maine, the Quakers, King Philip's War—up to the merger of the Bay and Plymouth colonies. Descendants of John, Henry and Arthur Howland multiplied in number and influence to become one of New England's famous pioneer families.
Bibliography
Bradford, W., Of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647. Modern Library College Editions, New York, 1981.
White, E.P., John Howland of the Mayflower vol. 1, Picton Press, Rockport, Maine, 3rd printing, 1999
Stratton, E.A., Plymouth Colony, Its History & People 1620-1691, Ancestry Publishing, Salt Lake City, UT, 1986
Howland, F., A Brief Genealogical and Biographical History of Arthur, Henry and John Howland and Descendants of the United States and Canada, published by F. Howland, New Bedford, MA, 1885.”387

“Household possessions [at the Pilgrim Hall Museum] include the Allerton-Cushman carved wooden cup, the Peter Brown tankard, the Howland Family bowl, the Fuller Family salt, the Warren Family porringer, the Cooke-Thomson bown and William Bradford’s 1634 silver cup (owned jointly with the Smithsonian). The Loara Standish sampler, the oldest sampler made in America, and the Constance Hopkins beaver hat are among the textiles and wearing apparel in the collections.” 388

“The 23th of February 1672 Mr John Howland senir of the Towne of Plymouth Deceased; hee was a Godly man and an ancient professor in the wayes of Christ hee lived untill hee attained above eighty yeares in the world, hee was one of the first Comers into this land and proved a usefull Instrument of Good in his place & was the lst man that was lift of those that Came over in the shipp Called the May Flower, that lived in Plymouth hee was with honor Intered att the Towne of Plymouth on the [fift*] 25 of February 1672” *[‘fift’ was crossed out, and ‘25’ interlined, in the same hand and ink] “ 357

“Howland was one of the most enterprising men in the colony and a success story from the start. His life was an early example of what men could do if given the opportunities in the new land of America. He sailed as a servant and aide to Governor Carver but before long he was performing so well that he was appointed Assistant Governor. He played a leading role in the administration of the colony as a good, solid man who could be trusted.
Howland was born in England about 1593-94 and from an early age he travelled with the Carver family. He was there at the start as part of the Leyden congregation so was truly one of the Pilgrim Fathers. A resourceful man, he decided to stay with the Carvers believing in the Pilgrim cause. When he was swept overboard in a storm in the mid-Atlantic he had the presence of mind to reach out and grab a trailing rope and with the help of others pulled himself back out of the sea.
Although listed as a ‘servant’, he was more probably an ‘employee’ because he signed the November Mayflower Compact before many others and took a leading role in the exploration and settlement and then administration of the colony. He married Elizabeth Tilley and had ten children before he died in Plymouth in 1687.” 389

“The first family group
1. John Carver . . .
2. Katherine Carver, his wife . . .
3. Desire Minter, Carver’s servant . . .
4. John Howland, Carver’s man servant who was rescued after falling from the Mayflower and became Assistant Governor; married Elizabeth Tilley and had ten children . . . “389

“6 December . . .
A ten-man party set out on what was to be a seven-day trip (their sixth land expedition since arriving). This time they headed south alongside the Cape Cod peninsula opposite Truro, aiming for Bilingsgate Point. Winslow described how the party was led by Captain Standish, and included William Bradford as official recorder, Master Carver, himself (also keeping notes), John Tilley, Edward Tilley, John Howland, Richard Warren, Stephen Hopkins and Edward Doty. . . . Unfortunately for this party the extreme cold almost immobilized some of them, including the Tilley brother, who ‘swooned’, while the Master Gunner was also very sick. . . . “389

Full text of the Mayflower Compact and the list of signers to be entered.390

“John Howland was of Carver’s family . . . Wednesday, the 6th of December, it was resolved our discoverers should set forth, for the day before was too foul weather, - and so they did, though it was well o’er the day ere all things could be ready. So ten of our men were appointed who were of themselves willing to undertake it, to wit, Captain Standish, Master Carver, William Bradford, Edward Winslow, John Tilley, Edward Tilley, John Houland, and three of London, Richard Warren, Steeven Hopkins, and Edward Dotte, and two of our seamen, John Alderton and Thomas English.” 390

“John Howland, the 13th signer of the Compact, is counted as belonging to Carver’s family, whose dauhter Elizabeth he married. The Plymouth Colony records say that ‘he was an ancient professor of the ways of Christ; one of the first comers, and proved a useful instrument of good, and was the last of the male survivors of those who came over in the Mayflwoer in 1620, and whose place of abode was Plymouth,’ John Alden, of Duxbury, outlived him 15 years. . . . Howland died in 1672 at Rocky Nook, in Kingston, aged 80. He had four sons and six daughters, some of whose descendants are still living in the Old Colony and in Rhode Island.” 390

The Cushnoc Archeological Site was designated a National Historic Landmark on 12 April 1993:
“This site contains the remains of Cushnoc, a Plymouth Colony trading post, one of the most important English Outposts along the mid-17th century Acadian frontier. No exact dates for Cushnoc’s construction or abandonment are documented, though evidence suggests pLymouth Colony merchants established the outpost soon after obtaining a patent to land there in 1628, and may have used this site until the establishment during the 1660s of another outpost a few miles downsteam.” 391

“Back a short distance from the [Kennebec] river bank, a Christian Science church sits on what was, essentially, the site of the 1628 Cushnoc Trading Post. A plaque donated by the Daughters of the American Revolution marks the location of the post that disappeared over three centuries ago. . . . Trade on the Kennebec began as early as 1625, and a sustained European presence was established in Augusta in 1628 when members of the Plymouth (Massachusetts) Colony built the Cushnoc Trading Post. Early in 1629, the Pilgrims sought and received a patent from authorities in England for rights to the land (fifteen miles on either side of the river) and exclusive trade with the tribes in the area. Based on earlier exploration and land claims, King James I had granted the New England land rights to a group of English nobles (in 1621) who then made the grant to the Pilgrims. There were overlapping claims by the French, and certainly the Abenaki people occupied the land and felt it to be collectively theirs. The Pilgrims operated Cushnoc from 1628 to 1661, before selling to others, and made enough profit (and more) to pay off their English sponsors.”392

“Think of the Kennebeck River in the 1620s, deep, cold and swift, flowing from the vast interior of what is now the State of Maine. . . Up this river, into this rich primeval forest sailed John Howland. he sailed in a vessel called a shallop. Plymouth Colony sent him to open a post to trade with the Abenaki. . . .The trading post was at a place Cushnoc. This was at the head of navigation on the Kennebec, just before the falls, where the current overpowers the tide. Here is the present day Augusta. John Howland was the commander at Cushnoc. He and his men built this trading house on the banks of the Kennebec. This is where the Abenaki came down the river in their canoes, laden with beaver, eager to trade. Here is how Governor Bradford put it:
‘Having procured a patent four Kennebec, they now Erected a house up above in the river in the most convenientest place for trade (as they conceived) and furnished the same with commodities for that end. both winter and summer; not only with corn but also with such other commodities as the fishermen had traded with them, as coats, shirts, rugs and blankets, buscuit, pease, prunes, etc. And what they could not have out of England, they bought of the fishing ships, and so caried on their business as well they could.’
Establishing this trading post and opening a successful trade with the Indians was a remarkable achievement. John Howland played a central role.” 393

“The Maine folks - the Maine Historic Preservation Commission - have found and excavated the site of the trading post. . . The location, even the existence of Cushnoc, was a much-debated point until their work in the 1990s. The State of Maine and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have conspired to remove the Edwards dam at Augusta. This was no mean accomplishment. The dam was a working hydroelectric dam, some 800 feet from shore to shore. Its removal was the first such project in the nation. Removal took place last summer and was quite a show. The Kennebec now flows as it did in the 17th century.” 393

In a letter from John Winthrop to Sir Nathaniel Rich 22 May 1634:
“I shall now acquaint you with a sadd accident which lately fell out between our neighbours of plimouth and some of the Lorde Saye his servants at Pascat[aqua]. They of Pl[imouth] having engrossed of the Cheif places of trade in N:E: viz: Kennebeck, Penobscott, Narigancet, and Conecticott, have erectd trading houses in all of them. The lords Piance going with 3 m3n and a boye to trade at Kenebeck, were forbidden, and persisting in their purpose 2 of the magistrats of Pl[imouth] viz: Jo: Alden and Jo: Howlande and about 9 more, came vp to them in their pinace and sent 3 men in a Canoe to cutt the Calbes of the Pas[cataqua] pinace (her master one Hockin having given them provoling speeches) and stood in their owne pinace with their peeces charged and ready to shotte: after they had cutt one Cable, Hockin came vp, and asked them if they ment to caste away his vessell etc: and sware withall that he would kill him that should come to cutt the other: wherevpon (the Canoa being driven away with the strength of the streame) they took out him that steered her and putt in another, and sent them againe to cutt the other Cable, which while one was doeing, (for it was cutt) Hockin shott one of them in the Canoa dead, vpon which one of Pl[imouth] men asked Howland if he should kill him allso but he forbade him saying he feard there had been too many killed allready: the pinace being then driven on shoae and in danger, the Pl[imouth] men saved her, and putt one of their own men into her to carry her homewards toward Pasc[ataqua] vpon the reporte of this we were uche greived, that suche an occasion should be offerd to our enemys to reproache our profession and that such an iniurye should be offered to those hon[our]able persons who for loue of us and for furtherance of our beginnigs here, had so farre eng[aged] temselv[es] with vx, so as we wrote to them to knowe the truethe of the matter, and whither they would advowe it: they wrote to vs againe relatinge the matter in effecte as I have expressed, with iustification of the facte etc: yet declaringe their sorrowe, that it had hapned so sadlye, otherwise then they intended: but they did not doubt but their Grant would beare them out: vpon this, we refuse to hole communion with them, till they give better satisfaction, and havinge the said alden before vs, at a gen[era]l Court, we took security of him for his forthcoming and wrote to them what and wherefore we had done it: and upon their answeare, that themselves would doe ustice in the Cause , we remitted him to them, as having no iurisdiction in it, to trye it ourselues. All that we ayme at is that they may come to see their sinne and repente of it: wich, if they shall doe, I would intreat you to intercede with the Lords for them,that the iniury and discourtesy may be passed by, vpon such satisfaction as they can make . . .
Jo: Winthrop
Boston Massachu[se]ts N.E. May 22, 1634” 394

“The honor of first stepping upon the rock is claimed by the descendants of Mary Chilton, in her behalf, and also by those of John Alden, in his favor - resting upon tradition in both families. It is evident that neither of them had the honor of first landing upon it. This occurred on the 11th of december, 1620, old style, corresponding to December 21st, new style, when the shallop of the Mayflower, having left on the 6th of December the harbor of Cape Cod, coasted along the shore, and was finally driven by storm into Plymouth, and found shelter at Clark’s Island. The shallop at this time had on board ten of the pilgrims, who had signed the compact, whose names were as follows: Capt. Standish, Master Carver, William Bradford, Edward Winslow, John Tilley, Edward Tilley, John Howland, Richard Warren, Stephen Hopkins, and Edward Dotey, from which it appears that John Alden was not among the number who first stepped on the rock.” 395

“Some years ago a grave-stone was placed over the remains of John Howland, by his decendant in the 15th generation, the Hon. John Howland, of Providence, President of the Historical Society of Rhode Island, who died Nov. 5th, 1854, aged ninety-seven years and five days.
‘Here ended the pilgrimage of John Howland - and Elizabeth his wife. She was the daughter of gov. Carver. They arrived in the Mayflower, Dec. 1620. They had four sons and six daughters, from whom have descended a numerous posterity.
‘1672, Feb. 23d. Joh Howland of Plymouth, deceased. He lived to the age of 80 years. He was the last man of them that came over in the Mayflower, who settled in Plymouth.’ “ 395

“The Landing of the Fathers in 1620, painted by the late Henry Sargent, Esq., of Boston, and generously presented by him to the Pilgrim Society [housed at the Pilgrim Hall] . . . The following individuals are represented in the painting, attired in the costume of their time: . . .Mr. John Alden . . Mr. Stephen Hopkins, his wife and children . . Mr. Richard Warren . . Mr. John Howland, son-in-law of governor Carver.” 395

“This tasset was part of John Howland’s armor, made c. 1603-1620. It was found in the fireplace area of the homestead during Sidney Strickland’s dig in 1939. It is the only piece of armor that belonged to a Mayflower pilgrim known to exist. (Photo by Gail Adams)” [picture on file]. 396

“Among the most efficient of the pilgrims who in 1620, from the deck of the ‘Mayflower’, landed upon the shore of New England, was John Howland; he was at that thime about twenty-eight years of age, and was a participant in every active enterprise undertaken by the colonists. Of his antecedents literally nothing is know other than that he was said to be ‘of London.’ He held important offices in the magistracy of the colony, to perform the duties of which required a degree of education and ability not generally possessed in those days by other than respectable and wealthy families, and not universally by such even . . . He died in 1672, aged eighty years, leaving four sons and six daughters, from whom have descended a numerous posterity.” 397
2nd extension of notes notes for John Howland
“John Howland is termed a ‘servant’ of Governor Carver. As already shown, the meaning of the word differed from its meaning at the present time and meant employee. The Governor’s servant was not necessarily a person of mean social position.
John Howland was a son of Henry Howland, a prosperous yeoman, of Fen Stanton, Lancashire, England. I have in my possession a card which seems ot have been printed about one hundred years of more ago, and which states the following:
‘Copy from the ancient records in the Herald’s College, Bennetts Hill, London. (these Arms were confirmed to Richard Howland, D.D. son & heir of John Howland of London, Gen. and allowed to him, and all the posterity of John Howland, Father of the said Richard, under the hand and seal of Robert Cooke, Clarencieux, King of Arms by patent, dated. 10th June 1584, Act 27, Elizabeth.)’ “ 398

“Thereafter follows the Howland Coat of Arms is in possession of some of the descendants of Gideon White of Shelburne, Nova Scotia, whose mother was Joanna Howland, great-grand-daughter of John Howland, the Pilgrim, who came over in the ‘Mayflower’ in 1620.’
John Howland is thought to be connected with this familt, but the connection had not been definitely proved. it is significant that the coat-of-arms was used by his early descendants. “ 398

“Brdford does not refer to John Howland as ‘Mr.’ but John Howland is so referred to in a letter from James Sherley, Merchant Adventurer, dated June 14, 1642, quoted in Bradford’s ‘History’ (B 369). He is constantly termed ‘Mr.’ in public records. (MD 11 70-73). He was a man of outstanding character, a Magistrate and one of the distinguished leaders of the colony. ertainly he was recognized as a member of the gentry after the settlement at Plymouth.” 398

“John Howland married Elizabeth Tilley who came on the ‘Mayflower’ with her parents, John and Elizabeth Tilley.” 398

“Howland, John, Plymouth, of the ever honored passeng. wh. came in the Mayflower 1620 the latest surviv. exc. John Alden, among the adult males; tho. a minor d. of Idaac Allerton, Mary, wh. m. Elder Thomas Cushman, liv. more than 78 yrs. after the landing. He was a serv. or attend. of Gov. Carber, yet he is in rank the thirteenth signer of the Covenant, 11 Nov. and was reckon. as part of the fam. of Gov. Carver, wh. gave occasion, no doubt, to the vain tradit. prevail. for the last century and a half that his w. Eliz. was d. of the Gov. who, perhaps, never had a ch. certain. brot. none. Botht he Gov. and his w. d. in the first season, and Howland, at the time of their arr. 28 yrs. old, m. Eliz. d. of JOhn Tilley (wh. with his w. d. soon after landing, leav. only this ch.), we are hardly permit. to doubt, early in 1621, as his ch. John and Desire are name. at the div. of cattle 1627, and he seems to have counted as many heads at the partit. of lds.1623-4. For correction of the long prevalent error, that he m. a d. of Gov. Carver, we are indebted to Bradford’s Hist. formerly part of the N.E. Library of Prince, in the tower of O.S. ch. at Boston, discov. 1855, in the lIbrary of the Bp. of London at Fulham. He was an Assist. 3 yrs. so early as 1633-5, and often a rep. and d. 23 Feb. 1673, aged more than 80, and his wid. d. 21 Dec. 1687, aged 80. His will, of 29 may 1672, names ten ch. we may hope in the order of b. of each sex, but we are ign. of the exact dates or sequence of any, exc. that John is by it call. eldest, and Isaac, youngest, Japez, and Joseph; Desire, wh. was either the first or sec. ch. m. 1643, John Gorham, and d. 13 Oct. 1683; Hope. w. of John Chipman, as early as 1646; Eliz. m. 13 Sept. 1649, Ephraim Hicks, and 10 July 1651, John Dickenson; Lydia, w. of James Brown of Swanzey; Hannah, m. a Bosworth, Nathaniel, as by the scrupulous writer of the late John Howland, p. 11, is said, and in his will she is nam. Bosworth; and Ruth, m. 7 or 17 Nov. 1664, Thomas Cushman, s. of the Elder.” 277

“I am already in Colonial Dames going back from me to John Howland, and I wanted to put John Howland in for the additional ‘coat of arms’ application. I wasn’t sure if it was John Howland himself or an ancestor that actually gets credit for this. Surprisingly, they have us use John Howland himself. This is how he was listed, and approved:
My said ancestor was:
John Howland of London
granted the coat of arms described as:
Argent two bars sable in chief three lions rampant of the second. (Co Cambridge, London & Streatham, Co. Surrey: granted 1584).” 399

“[The following document is copied from the Old Colony Records at Plymouth . ..
Plymoth, 1634. Prenc Governor.
This deponent saieth, that upon the ____ day of Aprill, John Hocking riding at anker within our limitts above the howse, Mr. John Howland went up to him wth owr bark and charged the said Hocking to waye his ankcors and depart, who answered hee would not, wth foule speeches, demaunding whie he spake not to him that sent him fourth. Answere was mad by John Howland that the last yeare a boat was sent, having no other busines, to know whether it was theire mind that hee should thus wronge us in our trade; who returned answer they sent him not hether, and therefore Mr. Howland tould him that he would not now sugger him ther to ride. John Hocking demounded what he would doe, whether he would shout; Mr. Howland answered no, but he would put him from thence. John Hocking said and swore he would not shoot, but swore iff we came a bord him he would send us _____. Thus passing by him we came to an anker sumthing nere his barke. Mr. Howland bid three of his men goe cutt his cable whose names were John Frish, Thomas Savory and William Rennoles, who presently cut one, but were put by the other by the strength of the streme. Mr. Howland, seeing they could not well bring the cannow to the other cable, caled him a bord, and bed Moses Talbot goe wth them, who accordingly went very reddyly and brought the canow to Hocking’s cable. He being upon the deck came with a carbine and a pistole in his hand and prsently prsented his peece at Thomas Savory; but the canow wth the tide was put nere the bow of the barke, wch Hocking seeing prsently put his peece almost to Moyses Talbotts head, wch Mr. Howland seeing called to him desiering him not to shut his man, but take himselfe for his mark; saying his men did but that wch hee commaunded them, and therfore desiered him not to hurt any of them. If any wrong was don it was himselfe that did it, and therfore caled againe to him to take him for his marke, saying he stod very fayer; but Hocking would not heare nor looke towards owr barke, but prsently shooteth Moyses in the head, and prsently took up his pitell in his hand, but the Lord stayed him from doing any further hurt; by a shot from owr barke, himselfe was presently shoote dead, being shott neere the same place in the head wher he had murderously shot Moyses.” 400

“Last fall, I wrote about my experience researching, creating and correcting my painting of the Plymouth trading post constructed beside the Kennebec River at a place called Cushnoc, (now Augusta, Maine). John Howland was put in command of the post and he remained there until about 1635.. What distinguishes this trading venture from all other Plymouth ventures at the time is that this was a major, year-round, economic enterprise developed for trade with the indigenoous people of the New World.” [Details to be entered]. 401

“In 1634, John Howland was in charge of the fur trading post at Kennebec when John Hocking of Ppiscataqua Plantation in New Hampshire created a confrontation with the Plymouth men and shot and killed Moses Talbot. Hocking was then shot and killed by another Plymouth man. Word of the incident was received from Hocking’s supporters by the colonists at Massachusetts Bay. Soon thereafter, a ship with Plymouth colonists ventured into Massachusetts Bay and one of the passengers, John Alden, was imprisoned in protest of the Hocking incident although he was not present at the incident. Alden remained in prison until letters from the Governor at Plymouth, carried by Captain Miles Standish, were received and acted on favorably by Thomas Dudley.” 402

“Eight ‘undertakers,’ including John Howland and John Alden, agreed to take on the responsibility for paying off the debt, and to that end they developed a plan which included designing, constructing and managing the daily operations of a year-round trading post in Maine on the eastern side of the Kennebec River. John Howland was put in charge of the post which was ready for operation in 1628 when their first patent arrived from England. He remained in command for seven years through 1634. Pilgrim John Alden, who was hired to work on the Mayflower as a cooper, brought up supplies and trade goods to Cushnoc. No doubt he helped extend the shallop, and most likely both the John Howland took part in the construction of the trading post.” [details of the author’s search for details about the trading post to be entered] 403

Details of the archeological information on the Kennebec Trading Post from Leon Cranmer’s book “Cusnoc The History and Archaeology of Plymouth Colony Traders on the Kennebec” to be entered. 403

“Whether wives of the man who operated the post ever spent time there is uncertain, but Lee’s book reveals that two oval, glass beads covered with gold leaf and a thin clear glass coating, ‘not intended for trade,’ were found on the cellar floor. Mr. Cranmer points out that similar beads are depicted in Dutch paintings from the same period on the bodice of a woman’s dress and strung across hair as a decoration. We have no proof that Elizabeth Howland, Priscilla Alden or any other women visited or resided at the trading post, but one thing is certain. Howland daughters Hope, Elizabeth and Lydia were all born between 1629 and 1633 when their father was in command of the post.” 403

According to William Bradford: “In sundry of these storms the winds were so fierce and the seas so high, . . . And in one of them, as they lay at hull in a mighty storm . . . And in one o fthem, as they lay at hull in a mighty sotrm a lusty young man, called John Howland, coming upon some occasion above the gratings was with a seele [roll] thrown into the sea. But it pleased God that he caught hold of the top sail halyards which hung overboard and ran out at length. Yet he held his hols (though he was sundry fathoms under water) till he was hauled up by the same rope to the brim of the water, and then with a broad hook and othe rmeans got into the ship again and his life saved. And though he was somewhat ill with it, yet he [became John Carver’s aide] and lived many years after and was a profitable member both of the church and commonwealth.” 404

“Before proceeding from Cape Cod the pilgrms sent out three exploring expeditions in their small boat. On the third of these trips, undertaken with doubt and fear, Richard Warren was a participant. They set out on the 16th of December (which was the 6th in the old calendar) . . . Morton wrote: . . . so ten of our men were appointed who were of themselves willing to undertake it, to wit, Captaine Standish, Maister Carver, William Bradford, Edward Winsloe, John Tilley, Edward Tilley, John Houland, and three of London, Richard Warren, Steeven Hopkins, and Edward Dotte.’ “ 405

“The commencement of the settlements at Yarmouth and Eastham brought the remainder of the intervening tract of the ‘purchasers or old comers’ into more direct notice, and offered inducements to such of the number who still retained their rights to the reserve, viz: - Mr. William Bradford, Mr. Thomas Prence, Mr. John Howland, Mr. William Collier, Nicholas Snow, thomas Clark, Edward Banges, Experience Mitchell, Joseph Rogers, Stephen Deane and Giles Hopkins, to have a division of some portion of it made. . . . Of the eleven lots laid out . . . the ninth lot, east of the eighth, three acres in length, was laid out to John Howland . . . ” 406

“The year the ‘purchasers or old comers’ made tha alotment does not appear upon record. There is reason to believe it was some few years ater 1657. These lots, ten in number, were all laid out parallel with the Indian line. . . The sixth lot, eastwardly of the fifth and adjoining, was laid out to ‘Mr. John Howland.’ This, too, is called ‘a half share’ lot.” 406

“John Wing now in possession of three lots of the Sesuit land laid out in 1653, on June 4 purchased of John Howland of Plymouth lot number nine, in the tier, together with all his right to land between the two rivers. By this purchase his lots, four in number, were united in one body, consitutuing a very large tract. For lot number nine he paid Mr. Howland fifteen pounds.” 406

“These partners (known as “The Undertakers’) . . . Three younger men of the colony also became partners: John Howland, John Alden and Thomas Prence.” 285

“John Howland was born circa 1592. ‘A lustie yonge man’ of 28, he came to New England on the Mayflower in 1620 as an indentured servant to John Carver. He was swept overboard during a storm but he was able to get hold of some topsail halyards which were trailing and managed to hand on until he was pulled in with a boat hook.
He was a signer of the Mayflower Compact on November 21, 1620, after which signing, his master, John Carver was elected the first Governor of the colony. John Carver had no children, and apparently John Howland inherited his estate after Carver’s death in April, 1621. Howland immediately bought his freedom.” 285

“On August 14, 1623, John married Elizabeth Tilley. . . John was very active in the life of the colony. He became one of the ‘Undertakers’ in 1627. He appears in many capacities during his life - as assessor, juror, on Governor Bradford’s council, selectman, and deputy to the General Court.
John died at the town of Plymouth, February 25, 1672, aged 80 years.” 285

“John Howland is the only one of the three brothers who came to his country in the Mayflower in 1620, thereby being one of the original Pilgrims who landed on Plymouth Rock. His was the thirteenth name on the list of forty-one persons who signed the memorable compact in the cabin of the Mayflower in ‘Cape Cod Harbor’ on the 21st of November, 1620. At this time he was 28 years of age. That he possessed sound judgment and business capacity is shown by the active duties which he assumed, and the trust which was reposed in him in all the early labors in establishing a settlement.” 278

“The first mention made of John in the old Plymouth colony records is in a lsit of ‘freemen’, and the third in number in the governor’s ‘cowncell’ of seven members. In 1633 he was an assessor, and his tax amounted to 18 shillings; in 1634 an assessor, and tax one pound and four shillings. In 1635 the council of Gov. Bradford was composed of such eminent persons as ‘Mr. Thomas Prence, Mr. Edward Winslowe, Mr. John Alden, Mr. Steuen Hopkins, Captayne Miles Standish, Mr. William Collier,’ together with ‘Mr. John Howland,’ who had occupied the same honorable position two previous years.” 278

“In 1636 we find John Howland serving on a ‘jewry’, which he frequently did. He was celect-man’ of Plymouth in 1666, and chosen deputy of the same town in 1652 to 1656, ‘58, ‘61, ‘63, ‘66, ‘67, ‘70. His election in 1670, June 2nd, was the last time he permitted his name to be used in a candicacy for public office, being nearly eighty years of age.
Besides these public positions ofhonor and trust bestowed upon him, he was very often selected to lay out and appraise land, to run out highways, settle disputes arising from various causes, and on committees of every description. He was no only full of zeal for the temporal welfare of the colony, but gave powerful encouragement to a high standard of morals and religion; so much so that he is recorded as a ‘godly man and an ancient professor in the ways of Christ.’ “ 278

“It is shown that he was active in this work, for Gov. Bradford writes that he became ‘a profitable memer both in church and common wealth’; and it appears that at ordination of John Cotton, Jr., in 1667, John Howland ‘was appointed by the church to join in the imposition of hands.’” 278

“In 1638 they moved from Plymouth to what was called Rocky Nook, buying the home of John Jenny, built in 1628, where they lived until the death of John Howland in 1672. Rocky Nook was at that time a part of the Plymouth colony but is now within the borders of Kingston, Massachusetts.” 278

“It is probable that John and Elizabeth were married towards the close of 1623 or early in 1624 and was the fifth or sixth marriage in the Plymouth colony. They had four sons and six daughters, six of the children being born in Plymouth and the last four at rocky Nook.” 278

“This grant [the Warwick Patent] occasioned much jealousy among the Puritan rivals at Piscataqua and elsewhere who coveted that trade and in April, 1634, when John Howland was in command of the Kennebec trading post and the spring trade with the Indians was just beginning, one John Hocking, agent for Lords Say and Brooke and others who were owners of the Piscataqua plantation, cmae in a barque laden with commodities for trade and boldly entereing the Plymouth grant, anchored near the falls above their trading house to intercept the canoes as they came down.
When Hocking entered the Plymouth territory John Howland forbade his proceeding and urged him by peaceable persuasion not to infringe upon their liberties which had cost them so dearly, but Hocking defiantly answered that he would go as he intended in despite of them and would ‘lye there as long as he pleased.’ John Howland told him that he would be forced to remove him or make seizure of him if he could, whereupon Hocking bade him do his worst and cooly proceeded to his anchorage.
Upon this bold defiance of their rights, John Howland at once took the Plymouth barque and attended by his men went up the river to where Hocking’s vessel lay and ordered him to weigh anchor and depart peaceably. Hocking answered him with foul speeches, referring him to the Piscataqua owners, to which John Howland replied that in the previous year a message had been sent them remonstrating against the attempts to wrong their trade and again ordering Hocking to depart warned him that he would not suffer his remaining longer.” 278

“Anchoring near Hocking’s vessel John Howland sent three of his men in a canoe to cut the other’s anchor cables so that the vessel should drift down the river and ordered his men that no shot be fired upon any occasion except by his command. One of the cables was then cut but the force of the current driving the canoe past the other, they were recalled and John Howland ordered another man, Moses Talbott, to go with them for their assistance.
While these men were cutting the other cable, Hocking with carbine and pistol in his hands threatened them and presently as the canoe came over aimed his carbine at Talbott’s head. John Howland, seeing this, jumped upon the rail of the barque and called to Hocking, telling him not to shoot his men who ‘did but that which he commanded them, and therefore desired him not to hurt any of them; if any wrong was done, it was himself that did it, and threfore called again to him to take him for his mark, saying that he stood very fair.’ “ 278

“The reckless Hocking , however, paid no heed ot him or to his gallant appeal, bu tshot Talbott in the head killing him instantly, but as he raised his pistolfor further blood work, one of the men on the barque, a friend of Talbott’s ‘that loved him well’ disregarding Howland’s order, seized his musket and shot Hocking in the head even as he had killed Talbott.” 278

“The descendants of the Pilgrim John Howland will naturally be interested in visiting the location of his home on Leyden Street where he lived until 1638 and then going to Rocky Nook, which was his home from 1638 until his death in 1673. The old Howland House on Sandwich Street was built in 1666 by Jacob Mitchell, who with his wife, was killed by the Indians in 1667. Jabez Howland, son of the Pilgrim John Howland, and a well-to-do-man, came into possession of the house in 1667, and finished building around the chimney, and raised the roof higher, widening it to cover the whole house. It is said to be the only house where Mayflower Pilgrims have stood.” 278

“Prenc Governor
Plymouth
1634
This deponent sai.eth that upon the day of Aprill John Hocking Riding at ankor wth in our limitts above the howse mr John Howland went up to him wth our barke and charged the said Hocking to waye his Anckors and depart who answered hee would not wth foule speeches demaunding whie he spake not to them that sent him forth: answere was mad by John Howland that the last yeare a boat was sent haveing no other busines to know whether it was theire mind that hee should thus wronge us in our trade who returned answer they sent him not thether and therfore mr Howland tould him that hee would not now suffer him there to ride, John Hocking demaunded what he would doe whether he would shout; mr Howland answered no but he would put him from thence John Hocking said and swore he would not shoot but swore if we came abord him he would send us thus passing by him we came to an anckor sumthing nere his barke mr Howland bid three of his men goe cutt his Cable whose names weare John Irish Thomas Savory & William Rennoles who prsently cut one but were put by the other by the strength of the streme mr Howland seeing they coul dnot well bring the Cannow to the other calbe caled them abord & bad Moses Talbott goe wth them who accordingly went very reddyly & brought the Canow to Hockings cable he being upon the deck came wth a carbine & a pistole in his hand & prsently prsented his peece at Thomas Savory but the canow wth the tide was put nere the bow of the barke wch Hocking seeing called to him desiering him not to shut his man but himselfe for his mark saying his men did but that wch hee commaunded them and therfore desiered him not to hurt any of them if any wrong was don it was himselfe that did it and therfore caled againe to him to take him for his marke saying he stod very fayer but Hocking would not heare nor looke towards our barke but prsently shooteth Moyses In the head, and prsently took up his pistell in his hand but the lord stayed him from doing any further hurt by a shot from our barke himselfe was presently strooke dead being shott neare the same place in the head wher he had murderously shot Moyses.” 407

“John, yeoman, passenger on the Mayflower to Plymouth, 1620, and died in Plymouth, 23 Feb. 1672 ‘over eighty.’ He married Elizabeth Tilley, a passenger on the Mayflower. He was acdtive in the First Church of Plymouth.” 408

“”By the mid 1620’s Plymouth Colony was prospering and producing a surplus of corn. Plymouth Colony applied for a patent to give them exclusive trading rights. Application was made to the King . After some intrique and poor draftsmanship a patent was granted. Incidentally, the Pilgrims had probably already embarked by the time the patent was received. The patent covered an area fifteen miles on both sides of the Kennebec River from the mouth to the head of navigation (presently Noridgewock). John Howland was chosen to be in charge of the venture. In 1628 in a shallop of thirty eight feet in length, he, together with John Alden and other Plymouth men, sailed up the Kennebec to the place chosen for their trading post, on a bluff with a gentle slope to the river. There the men from Plymouth established their post and called it Cushnoc, after the Indian name for that location. Howland was in charge for seven years. The trade was enormously successful. In exchange for corn and manufactured goods, teh Pilgrims received a variety of furs, predominately beaver. During Howland’s tenure £10,000 of beaver pelts were shipped to London. This would have been enough to pay off the debt to the original financiers, but for the interest rate - 50%.” 409

“As one of the purchasers of the joint-stock company, Alden also continued to work for the company, and was involved in establishing the fur trade with the Indians on the Kennebec River. It was there, in 1634, that a trading rights dispute with neighboring Englishmen erupted into a deadly conflict. The Plymouth men, led by John Alden and John Howland, had established a trading post on the Kennebec River to trade with the Indians up the river. Then, along came John Hocking with two other men and a boy from a small trading settlement established to the north in Piscataqua. The joint-stock company, now owned by Alden and the other purchasers at Plymouth, had a legal patent that provided them exclusive rights to trade on the Kennebec River, so when Hocking moved his boat up the river to intercept the trade before it could reach them, they had to act. The company was already heavily in debt, due to some questionable deals arranged by Isaac Allerton: they could not suffer the potential loss of the Kennebec trade.
John Howland went up to Hockings and his men, and asked them to leave. They refused. Howland stated he would not allow them to remain. Hocking remained defiant with ‘foul speeches.’ Howland then ordered three of his men, John Irish, Thomas Savory, and William Reynolds, to cut the anchor lines that were holding Hocking’s barge in place - the strength of the river’s current would then was Hocking and his men out of their position. Howland’s men were only able to cut one of the cables; however, the river’s current prevented them from getting into a good position to cut the others. So, they sent Moses Talbot in a canoe to finish the job. As Talbot was cutting the cables, Hocking stormed across the deck of his barge with guns in hand, and shot Moses in the head at point-blank range, killing him instantly. Then, ‘one of his fellows which loved him well could not hold, but with a musket shot Hocking, who fell down dead and never spake a work.’ Alden was present with Howland during the whole episode, as they were the two men in charge of the trade on the Kennebec.” 410

“John Howland was born about 1594 and was one of that noteworthy company who sailed for New England on the ‘Mayflower’ in 1620. He was the thirteenth signer of the Compact. He was frequently called to public office and died April 23, 1672-73.” 365

“For generations Maine historians have speculated over the number and location of Pilgrim trading posts on the Kennebec. Some Schoalrs ahve suggested that two or three posts existed simultaneiously with one situated at the mouth of the river to facilitate trade and communication with Plymouth. Traditionally the main post has been called Cushnoc (or Cushenoc) and placed in Augusta, usually ont he site of Fort Western. In many books the name Cushnoc has been freely substituted for ‘Kenibec’ or ‘Kennebec,’ the terms used in seventeenth-century documents. But clearly in some documents ‘Kenibec’ refers not just ot he river or the region but to a specific location and trading post quite distince from Cushnoc. William Bradford, the meticulous chronicler of Plymouth, never used the term ‘Cushnoc, not even to describe events at the first falls (the location of Cushnoc) during the Hocking incident in 1634. Indeed, a close reading of documents on the Hocking incident suggests that the main Plymouth post was somewhere downriver, for Plymouth employees had to get in a bark and chase Hocking upriver above teh Kenibec post to his anchorage just below the falls in the river. . . . A resident of Piscataqua and the agent for Lord Say 7 Sele and Lord Brooke, Hocking sailed above the Plymouth post at Kenibec to steal its trade. In the altercation that followed, Hocking killed a Plymouth employee, only to be killed himself by a return volley from another Plymouth worker. Though Hocking had no connection with Massachusetts Bay, the colony decided to use the incident to assert its authority and break the Plymouth strangle-hold on the fur trade. When John Alden (a Plymouth magistrate and eyewitness to the killings) visited Boston shortly after the Hocking incident, he was seized as a hostage and imprisoned, occasioning a meeting between Bradford, Winthrop, and other officials of the two colonies. Winthrop, however, had to back down and admit that Plymouth had exclusive control of the Kennebec trade and that Hocking was in the wrong. Plymouth officials, for their part, admitted some fault in the matter and felt they could have proven their right to the river trade without two men dying.” [Details of the trading pot and its demise to be entered] 411

“Wednesday, the 6th of December, it was resolved our discoverers should set forth, for the day before was too foul weather, and so they did, though it was well o’er the day ere all things could be ready. So ten our our men were appointed who were of themselves willing to undertake it, to wit, Captain Standish, Master Carver, William Bradford, Edward Winslow, John Tilley, Edward Tilley, John Howland, and three of London, Richard Warren, Stephen Hopkins, and Edward Dotte, and two of our seamen, John Allerton and Thomas English.” 412

“During a storm, certainly, it was only a few intrepid young men who ventured on decks (and then, like John Howland), were ate risk of being swept into the ocean). The passengers, however, were not confined in dismal and crowded conditions unless it was absolutely necessary.” 413

“John Howland. born, circa 1592 in Fen Stanton, Huntingtonshire, England, he was the son of Henry and Margaret Howland. John Howland died, 23 February 1672/3, in Plymouth, Massachusetts. Burial: 25 February 1672/3, in Plymouth, atop Burial Hill. Probate of Estate: 5 March 1672/3, in Pltymouth; Will: May 29, 1672.” 287

“John Howland came to Plymouth on the Mayflower on its first trip to New England and, as noted in William Bradford’s journal, on that trip he nearly lost his life.
‘In sundry of these storms the winds were so fierce and the seas so igh, as they could not bear a knot of sail, but were forced to hull for divers days together. And in one of them, as they thus lay at hull in a mighty storm, a lusty young man called John Howland, coming upon some occasion above the gratings was, with a seele of the ship, thrown into sea; but it pleased God that he caught hold of the topsail halyards which hung overboard and ran out at length. Yet he held his hold (though he was sundry fathoms under water) till he was hauled up by the same rope to the brim of the water, and then with a boat hook and other means got into the ship again and his life saved. And though he was something ill with it, yet he lived many years after and became a profitable member both in church and commonwealth.’ “ 287

“John Howland married, Elizabeth Tilley, circa 1624, in Plymouth. . . As the following deposition shows, John Howland was in Maine in April 1634. At the time he was in charge o a fur trading post at the Kennebec. As to who made the deposition, the Plymouth Colony records do not show. the deposition itself is part of the Plymouth Colony Probate Records. [full text of the deposition to be entered] . . . John Howland served on a commission ‘to determine the jurisdiction of the Massachusets & New Plimouth concerninge a certayne tract or tracts of land called Shawamet & Pautuxit . . . ‘ The commission submitted its report, 7 June 1650.” 287

“ ‘ The 23th of February, 1672, Mr John Howland, Senir, of the towne of Plymouth, deceased. Hee as a godly man and an ancient professor in the wayes of Christ; hee liued vntill hee attained aboue eighty eyares int he world. Hee was one of the first comers into this land, and proued a vsefull instrument of good in his place, & was the last man that was left of those that came ouer in the shipp called the May Flower, that liued in Plymouth; hee was with honor intered att the towne of Plymouth ont he 25 of February, 1672.’ “

Full text of his will and inventory to be entered.
“The Last Will and Testament of mr John howland of Plymouth Late deceased, exhibited tot he Court held att Plymouth the fift Day of March Anno Dom 1672 on the oathes of mr Samuell ffuller and mr William Crow as followth . . .
Item I Will and bequeath unto my Deare and loveing wife Elizabeth howland athe use and benifitt of my now Dwelling house in Rockey nooke in the Township of Plymouth aforsaid, with the outhousing lands, That is uplands uplands and meddow lands and all appurtenances adn privilidges threunto belonging in the Towne of Plymouth and all other Lands houseing and meddowes that I have in the said Towne of Plymouth excepting what meddow and upland I have before given To my sonnes Jabez and Isacke howland During her naturall life to Injoy make use of ad Improve for her benifitt and Comfort. . . .
Item I giue and bequeath unto my Daughter Desire Gorum twenty shillings
Item I giue and bequeath to my Daugher hope Chipman twenty shillings . . .
Item my will is That these legacyes Given to my Daughters be payed by my exeequitrix in such species as shee thinketh meet;
Item I will and bequeath unto my loveing wife Elizabeth howland, my Debts and legacyes being first payed, my whole estate: viz: lands houses goods Chattles; or any thingeelse that belongeth or apperaineth unto mee, undisposed of be it either in Plymouth Duxburrow or Middlbery or any other place whatsoever; I Doe freely and absolutely give and bequeath it all to my Deare and loveing wife Elizabeth howland whome I Doe by these prsents, make ordaine and Constitue to be the sole exequitrix of this my Las will and Testament ot see the same truely and faithfully prfrmed according to the tenour theror; In witness wherof I the said John howland senir have heerunto sett my hand and seale the aforsaid twenty ninth Day of May, one thousand six hundred seaventy and two 1672 . . . “ 287

“The Pilgrims at Cushnoc . . .
The boat also carried men from New Plymouth. They were led most likely by Edward Winslow, aged thirty-two, but possibly also by William Bradford, the colony’s governor, a man of thirty-eight. Probably Winslow had with him John Howland, in his late twenties, since Howland later became the manager of the Pilgrim fur business in Maine. . . With a patent from the authorities in London, they were on their way to build a trading post to dominate the traffic in fur from the interior.” 414

“Even on the ocean, the English ranked each other in categories, carefully arranged in grades of wealth and social status. Twenty-four households traveled on the Mayflower . . . At the top were John and Katherine Carver, people of substance traveling with five servants, including John Howland, and an adopted child.” 414

“Somewhere out on the ocean, amid the blast of a gale, John Howland slipped off the wet timbbers of the Mayflower. He may have been no more than twenty-one, a ‘lustie younge man,’ says Bradford. Howland came up on deck and fell off, but before he hit the waves, he caught a rope that was trailing in the sea. It kept him afloat long enough for somebody to fish him out of the surging water with a boat hook within the short span of minutes before the cold froze his muscles and fatally weakened his grip. Howland went on to spend five decades in America, acting as manager of the beaver trading post at Cushnoc. Lusty young John became, in Bradford’s words, a ‘profitable member’ of the community, not least when, much latr, in a gunfight on the Kennebec Howland and his men killed an English fur-trading competitor. Howland lived on until 1673, surviving William Bradford by more than fifteen years. He and his wife, Elizabeth, founded a lineage with perhaps mor descendants than any other Mayflower couple.” 414

“He ended his days on his farm close to the cove at Rocky Nook, still the quietest and prettiest place in what was once the Plymouth Colony, looking out across mudflats, wading birds, and salt marsh toward the modern town of Duxbury. When he died, Howland left his widow, ten children, and eighty-eight grandchildren, and an ample herd of cows, sheep, and goats, but he also left something else. he owned an item that, like a key, unlocks the meaning of the journey as he and Bradford understood it [Henry Ainsworth’s masterpiece, Annotations upon the Five Books of Moses] . . .” 414

“William Bradford’s most famous anecdote concerns a flaw in the ship. When the Mayflower left Plymouth, th ewind was ‘prosperus,’ says Bradford, for what he calls ‘a season’ - again, he does not say how long it was - until the ship encountered headwinds. Shaken and leaking, the ship struggled on against gales so fierce that the crew had to strike her sails and lie hull down among th steep weves, or risk losing her masts. During one of these episodes, as the Mayflower lay without a sheet of canvas to catch the wind, Howland came up on deck and was nearly lost. The flaw appeared amidships, when one of the beams that supported the main deck and began to crack. . . . Even his account of Howland’s narrow escape contains a perplexing feature. Bradford calls the rope that saved him a halyard, used to raise a topsail. Only a very shoddy boatswain would let a halyard dangle into the water, instead of making it fast to a clear: Bradford offers no explanation. But then why should he? William Bradford did not claim to be a seafarer.” 414

“The following passengers on the Mayflower were servants of Leiden Pilgrims: John Howland . . . “ 415

“Bradford’s memoir mentions one other incident on the voyage. During a storm so severe that all sails were furled and the ship was ‘hulled’ . . . a ‘lusty young man (called John Howland) coming upon some occasion above the gratings, was, with a feel [lurch] of the ship thrown into the sea; but it pleased God that he caught hold of the top-sail halyards, which hung overboard, & ran out at length; yet he help his hold (though he was sundry fat horns under water) till he was hauled up by the same top to the brim of the water, and then with a boat hook & other means got into the ship again, & his life saved.’ Howland’s salvation by being raised up out of the water contrasted with the death of the foul-mouthed sailor, who was buried in the sea. A lesson could be learned: the evil perished while the godly were preserved, at least for the purposes of Bradford’s story.” 415

“At least twenty ‘first-period’ houses (built before 1720) could be studied in the area that was Plymouth Colony. In Plymouth: the Harlow, Howland, Sparrow, Churchill, and Bartlett houses, plus one in Summer Street, another in lower Summer Street, and one on Main Street in North Plymouth; in Duxbury, the Alden house . . . “ 415

“John and Kathrine Carver were accompanied by ‘Desire Minter; & 2. man-servants, John Howland, Roger Wilder; Wiliam Latham, a boy, & a main servant, & a child that was put to him, called Jasper More.” 415

“John Howland, born in England perhaps in 1592, died in Plymouth, Plymouth Colony, 23 feb. 1672/3 and was buried there two days later, probably on his own land.
He married in Plymouth, about 1624 (the date 14 August 1623 being given by one compiler, but without documentation), Elizabeth Tilley, who died in Swansea, Plymouth Colony, at the home of her daughter Lydia (Howland) Brown, 21 Dec. 1687, aged 80, her will, dated Swansea 17 Dec. 1686, giving her age as 79.
He came to Plymouth on the Mayflower in 1620. En route he was swept overboard in a heavy sea, but was able to hold onto some halliards and be rescued with the aid of a boat hook. He was thirteenth of the forty-one signers of the Mayflower Compact on 21 Nov. 1620 and was in the party which had the first encounter with the Indians at Great Meadow Creek three days before most of the passengers landed at Plymouth.” 355

“He had come to Plymouth as a ‘servant’ to Governor John carver, although it is obvious that his station in life was somewhat higher than that of a servant, for when Governor and Mrs. Carver both died in the spring of 1621, leaving no children of their own, they apparently left him their estate [Willison, 443]. Left in the carver household after that first terrible winter were John Howland, Desire Minter (a girl of about 21 from Leyden), Elizabeth Tilley, who was about 14 or 15 and had been taken in by the carvers upon the deaths of her own parents a couple of months before, and William Latham, ‘the boy.’ Desire Minter was apparently the hostess of the house for a time, but returned to England within few years. John and Elizabeth named their first child after her.” 355

“The settlement at Plymouth was responsible to the London Company for providing a return not he investment made by the stockholders. The communal system in use for a few years after 1620 had not resulted in the necessary productivity, and, as private enterprise was not possible under the terms of the colony’s relationship with the company, in 1626 and 1627 William Brewster, William Bradford, Edward Winslow, Miles Standish, Thomas Prence, John Alden, Isaac Allerton and John Howland became purchasers and undertakers, that is, they purchased the colony’s freedom from the London Company and undertook to settle the colony’s debt. As a part of the project to raise the money necessary to pay the debt over a fifteen year period Howland became the commander of a Pilgrim trading post at Kennebec, now August, Maine [Willison, 263]. “ 355

“In April of 1634 a prominent citizen of Massachusetts Bay, John Hocking, established a trading post north of that of the Pilgrims, cutting goff a large part of their lucrative commerce in beaver. Howland, as commander, led a group including Thomas Savory and Moses Talbot to protest to Hocking, who held a gun first at Savory’s head and then at Talbot’s during the ensuing argument. In the hearing that followed the incident it was related that Howland told Hocking to point the gun at him, as commander, if he felt he had to be prepared to shoot someone, but Hocking shot Moses Talbot in the head at close range and was himself shot and killed by someone on the Pilgrims’ boat [F. Howland, 317-318].” 355

“He served as Assistant to the Governor from 1633 to 1635, and as a Deputy to the General court in 1641, 1656, 1658, 1661, 1663, 1666-1667 and 1670. He was a Selectman of Plymouth in 1666, and often served on committees appointed to ‘lay out and appraise land, run out highways,’ and settle petty disputes [F. Howland, 317]. He was the last surviving passenger of the Mayflower in the town of Plymouth, although others surviving longer lived in the western parts of the colony. He was an ancestor of Presidents Rutherford B. Hayes, and, in the eighth generation, Franklin D. Roosevelt. His will was dated 29 May 1672.” 355

“Subsequent owners of the Prence Farm were John Howland, Pilgrim . . . “ 416

“Among the thirty or so Separatist passengers on board were activist William Bradford, church elder William Brewster, John Carver, Edward Winslow, deacon Samuel Fuller, and John Howland.” 417

“Carver and his wife, Katherine, had no children but took as servants John Howland, about twenty-one, William Latham, eleven, Roger Wilder, also a minor and the young Desire Minter. It is unclear to what extent the Carvers considered these young people family, servants, or apprentices.” 417

“The Mayflower almost lost a passenger when John Howland went up on deck during heavy weather. As the ship rolled to one side, Howland slipped into the sea. Though he was powerless to resist the waves, the topsail halyard, which happened to be trailing in the water, happened to come into his hand, which he happened to close at the right moment. He help it as he sank what seemed to him several fathoms. The crew hauled him to the surface and used a boat hook or something to bring him up to the deck. Bradford described him as ‘something ill with it,’ as anyone might be after being snatched back from sure death. But he got over it.” 417

“On December 6, after a busy day of preparing the shallop and its equipment, twenty men - Separatists Carver, Bradford, Winslow, John Tilley, his brother Edward, and John Howland; their security man Standish; Strangers Richard Warren, Stephen Hopkins and Edward Doty . . . . set off for Thievish Harbor. . . . “ 417

“The shared debt didn’t work out very well, so in 1628, eight men - Bradford, Standish, Allerton, Winslow, Brewster, Howland, Alden, and a Fortune passenger, Thomas Prence, formed a partnership that agreed to pay for the shares over the course of several years. They called themselves the ‘Undertakers.’ In exchange for their promos to undertake the debt, they received exclusive right to the colony’s fur trade for six years. They finally settled the debt in 1642.” 417

“John Howland married the orphaned Elizabeth Tilley. They had ten children. When he died, he left his house to his wife and his land to his sons. His daughters got twenty shillings each.” 417

1620
Mayflower of London, two hundred tons, Christopher Jones, Master. Left Southampton August 5, and arrived at Cape Cod December 11, with one hundred and one passengers. The ship was detained at Dartmouth and Plymouth, England, about two weeks for repairs to her consort, the Speedwell. The entire company settled at Plymouth [Bradford: History of Plimmoth Plantation; Banks: English Ancestry and Homes of the Pilgrims]. . . .
John Carver of Doncaster, Yorkshire
Mrs. Katherine Carver
Desire Minter
John Howland servant; of London
Roger Wilder, servant
William Latham, servant
Jasper More, servant
_________, maidservant . . . “ 418

“On 2 August 1659, ‘[w]hereas there is a controversy depending betwixt Thomas Pope and Will[i]am Shirtlife, concerning the bounds of the lands of the said parties at Strawberry Hill, or the Reed Pond, in the township of Plymouth, the court having heard what can be said on both sides, and finding an issue can not be put to it at this present court do order and request Mr. John Howland, Francis Cooke, and John Dunham Senior to take a convenient time as soon as may be to repair to the said lands, and also such of the ancient inhabitants as give any testimony or light towards the clearing of the case,’ and to settle the bounds in dispute [PCR 3:169].” 419

“Lists of Passengers and the Ships which Brought Them
1620
Mayflower of London, two hundred tons, Christopher Jones, Master. Left Southampton August 5, and arrived at Cape Cod December 11, with one hundred and one passengers. The ship was detained at Dartmouth and Plymouth, England, about two weeks for repairs to her consort, the Speedwell. The entire company settled at Plymouth. . .
John Carver of Doncaster, Yorkshire , .
John Howland servant; of London . . .

William Mullins of Dorking, county Surrey;merchant
Mrs. Alice Mullins
Joseph Mullins Priscilla Mullins
Robert Carter . . .

Stephen Hopkins of Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire
Mrs. Elizabeth Hopkins
Giles Hopkins
Constance Hopkins
Damaris Hopkins
Oceanus Hopkins
Edward Dotey servant; of London
Edward Lister servant; of London

Richard Warren . . .

John Tilley of Saint Andrews Undershaft, London
Mrs. Elizabeth Tilley
Elizabeth Tilley

John Alden of Harwich, county Essex; cooper . . . “ 418

Magistrates in the Colony of New Plymouth.
The good people, soon after their first coming over, chose Mr. William Bradford for their governor, and added five assistants, whose names, I suppose, will be found in the catalogue of them, whom I find sitting on the seat of judgment among them, in the year 1633. . . .
John Howland. . . “ 420

“Wednesday, at the 6th of December . . . So ten of our men were appointed who were of themselves willing to undertake it, to wit, Captain Standish, Master Carver, William Bradford, Edward Winslow, John Tilley, Edward Tilley, John Howland, and three of London, Richard Warren, Stephen Hopkins, and Edward Dotte, and two of our seamen, John Allerton and thomas English.” 412

“Mention should be made of the coat of arms of the Howland family. The heraldic description given in burke’s ‘General Armory’ is as follow:
Argent, two bars sable; in chief three lions rampant of the second. Crest: A leopard passant sable, ducally gorged or. In ordinary English this means that the body of the shield is silver with two horizontal bars of black; the lions and the crest are also black, the leopard having a coronet of gold about his throat.
The arms were granted on June 10, 1584, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, to Bishop Richard Howland of Peterborough, who was the eldest son of John Howland of Newport Pond, in the county of Essex, and his wife Agnes, daughter of John Greenway of Winton, County Norfolk. His father was John Howland of Newport Pond, whose will was proved April 15, 1550. Bishop Richard Howland had a brother John, whose son John was considered to be the John Howland who came in the Mayflower in 1620, a supposition apparently confirmed by the fact that in the old cemetery on burial Hill, Plymouth, are seen the family arms on graves of various Howlands. But Colonel Chester, a noted English generalogist, held as a result of investigations, that John, nephew of Bishop Howland, died unmarried and was buried in England. The Howland family had large estates in Surrey.” 421

“When John Howland halped establish the colony’s trading post on the Kennebec - called Cushnoc - he soon discovered that the most sought-after commodity for trade was corn. And so corn was shipped north to Cushnoc and thre traded to the Abenaki nation for beaver pelts. These pelts went to London. This trade enabled Plymouth Colony to pay off its debts.” 422

“From the primary sources, John Howland’s direct association with the Kennebec trade house is only mentioned on a single occasion: the infamous 1634 incident in which he was overseeing the party that shot and killed John Hocking. Statements suggesting that Howland ‘established’ the trading post in 1628, that he was ‘chosen to be in charge of the venture,’ and that the Pilgrims ‘called it Cushnoc,’ are based on assumptions or legends, and cannot actually be substantiated by the historical record. . . The name ‘Cushnoc’ is not found in any letter, journal, or writing of a Plymouth colonist. It is not found in any Plymouth Colony patents, court records, or otehr documents. The Plymouth colonists always referred to it simply as the trading house on the Kennebec. If they did call it Cushnoc, they never wrote that fact down.” 423

“The Plymouth Colony . . in 1627, they sent Isaac Allerton to England to obtain a legal patent to establish the Colony’s right and monopoly to the fur trade at Kennebec. That same year, a group of Plymouth colonists, nicknamed the Undertakers, completed the purchase of the joint-stock company from the remaining English shareholders for £1800, to be paid £200 annual installments. The Undertakers, who assumed the company’s assets and trading rights, were William Bradford, Isaac Allerton, Myles Standish, John Alden, William Brewster, John Howland, Thomas Prence, and Edward Winslow.” 423

“So the trading house on the Kennebec was first constructed in 1628; but again, the primary sources provide no significant reference or detail on specifically which individuals were involved, or who was ‘in charge.’ Since Edward Winslow was one of the Undertakers, and since he led the first voyage to Kennebec in 1625, he would perhaps be the most logical candidate. And, indeed, in 1629, Bradford does report ‘Mr. Winslow coming that way from Kennebec, and some of their partners with him in the bark, they met with Mr. Alelrton . . . ‘ Though certainly not conclusive, that comment seems to hint that Mr. Winslow, not Howland, was likely still the person in charge at Kennebec in 1629, as he was on the voyage in 1625. Howland, if he was present at all, was probably included in the ‘partners’ that were with him. Winslow was wealthier than Howland and had a higher social class than Howland, so it would be no surprise that he would outrank Howland in any Kennebec business hierarchy that may have been established. [In 1633, John Howland was taxed 18 shillings, whereas Edward Winslow was taxed 45 shillings. Of all the Undertakers, Howland and Standish were the ‘poorest,’ at least as measured by the amount of taxes they paid. Plymouth Colony Records 1:9-11.” 423

“Isaac Allerton returned from England in 1629/1630 with the Warwick Patent, sometimes called the Bradford Patent. . . The patent was taken out in William Bradford’s name, but did assign power of attorney to ‘Captain Myles Standish, or in his absence Edward Winslow, John Howland and John Alden.” 423

“A small trading post had been established at Piscataqua, underwritten by Lord Saye and Lord Brooke; and those traders sent out John Hocking to bring in furs from the Kennebec. Hocking arrived at the Kennebec with a small barque, a few rew, and a supply of trading goods, and positioned himself slightly up the river from Plymouth’s trading house, so as to intercept any trade. Bradford tells us that ‘[h]e tht was chief of the place forbade them.’ A surviving court deposition tells us that man was John Howland. What happened next would change the Kenebec trade, and John Howland, forever. There are three surviving accounts of the ‘John Hocking” incident. The first is the account penned by William Bradford in his Of Plymouth Plantation, with some accompanying correspondence. The second are the accounts written by Governor John Winthrop of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. And the third is a deposition found in the probate records of Plymouth Colony. Since the deposition is the only first-hand account of the incident, that is the one I will reproduce here in full. [Full text to be entered]. “ 423

“From this deposition, aside from answering the basic ‘what happened,’ we learn specifically that John Howland was the individual in cahrge of the trading house in April 1634. This deposition is actually the onlyprimary source record of Howland ever being at Kennebec, and is the only record of him being ‘in charge.’ If this deposition did not exist, we would have had no idea today that Howland was ever at kennebec. How long he had been in charge, and whether it was a temporary or permanent assignment, is not stated.” 423

“According to Winthrop, Plymouth Colony adequately answered and proved that they had the right to defend their trading rights even to the death, but that Plymouth Colony ‘acknowledged that they did hold themselved under guilt of the breach of the sixth commandment, in that they did hazard man’s life for such a cause, and did not rather wait to preserve their right by other means . . . and hereafter they would be careful to prevent the like.’ In many ways, this admission by Plymouth leadership was a direct indictment of John Howland’s actions, acknowledging that although legal, he should ahve avoided an armed confrontation and instead sought ‘other means,’ namely legal remedies (they could have, for example, just sued Lord saye and Lord Brooke in court for recovery of the trade that was lost as a result of the illegal trespassing).” 423

“Since the [Kennebec] trading post was active year-round, it seems quite probably that the person ‘in charge’ would ahve rotated regularly. Howland, Winslow,Prence, Standish, and Alden all put in appearances at the Plymouth court sessions and in other Plymouth records throughout the years the Kennebec trade was active, indicating none of them ever ‘permanently’ relocated to the trading house for any significant length of time.” 423

“It must have been an enormously traumatic episode that would haunt Howland for many, many years. Howland disappears entirely from the Colony records for more than seven years after the incident - he seems to have completely bowed out of all involvement in colony government, business and trade. He had regularly been an Assistant, one of the highest ranking positions within the Colony, but his stint came to an abrupt end. Following the deaths of Moses Talbot and John Hocking, Howland is never mentioned again in association with Kennebec trade (aside from a minor committee appointment in 1659). Whether Howalnd bowed out of public and business life to recover from the traumatic episode (he did after all witness the horrific killing of one of his employees, who was simply following his orders), or whether he was relieved of his duties because the Plymouth politial and religious leadership held him partially responsible for the violation of the sixth commandment and the political fallout that ensued, in uncertain. Whatever the case, he either recovered, or got back into good graces, as he starts regularly participating in colony government as a Deputy for the Plymouth Court starting in 1641, and he continued in that capacity for well over twenty years.” 423
Last Modified 23 Nov 2013Created 24 Dec 2013 using Reunion for Macintosh