Check If You Were Related to a Pilgrim, the Easy Way

500K names included in new online database
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 14, 2018 10:00 AM CDT
Updated Jun 17, 2018 10:00 AM CDT
Finding Your Mayflower Ancestors Just Got Easier
The Mayflower II, a replica of the original ship that brought the Pilgrims to Massachusetts in 1620, is seen in Plymouth, Mass., in 2014.   (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia, File)

Discovering if you're descended from the Pilgrims is "easier than ever." A new database offers for the first time online records on more than 59,450 fifth-generation descendants of the small group who sailed to the New World aboard the Mayflower in 1620. Of the roughly 132 passengers and crew, 51 are known to have descendants, estimated to number 35 million across the planet, per the AP. Some 10 million are believed to remain in the US, according to the General Society of Mayflower Descendants. To find out if you're among that number, you need only visit the database and type in the name of an ancestor who lived in the 1700s or 1800s, as the Pilgrims' fifth-generation descendants did, reports USA Today.

With more than half a million searchable names, it's "easier than ever to learn whether an individual is descended from one who planted the first permanent settlement of New England in Plymouth Colony and ultimately laid the foundation for America," D. Brenton Simons of the New England Historic Genealogical Society tells the AP. But though some use is free, access to the full database requires society membership, which is $35 for three months. The database is just one effort to honor the Mayflower voyage ahead of its 400th anniversary in 2020. The Plymouth Herald reports more than $373 million will be spent on celebrations in the UK, while New Hampshire's Elm Research Institute is calling on communities to plant American Liberty elm trees, per the AP. (We may finally know exactly where the first pilgrims lived.)

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