This is my last known Mayflower ancestor--phew!
James Chilton was a Separatist and was with the Pilgrims in Leiden, where he was a tailor. James was born about 1556 at Canterbury, Kent, England, son of Lionel Chilton. His baptism has not been found but the best source for his age is the 1619 Leiden Statement of Facts, which describes him as "approximately 63 years of age."
He was married in 1585/6 to a woman whose name is not known, although her name is often seen as Susanna Furner, which is incorrect. Their first child was baptized at St. Paul’s, Canterbury on 15 Jan 1586/87.
James and his wife had children ten children, although three died young: Isabella, Jane, Mary (died young), Joel (died young), Elizabeth, James (died young), Ingle, Christian, James, and Mary.
James was named “Gifted Freeman” at Canterbury, quite an honor since a new mayor could only bestow this on one person within a year after taking office. From what I understand, it meant that James could run his drapery/tailoring business without restraint and without using apprentices.
|James Chilton autograph from mayflowerhistory.com|
Perhaps due to their religious beliefs, the family relocated to Sandwich in Kent. I can't imagine leaving Canterbury, a place where James had a special standing in the community, would have been taken lightly. Mary was baptized in Sandwich on 31 May 1607, at St. Peter’s. In 1609 Mrs. Chilton was charged with attending the secret burial service of a child (they opposed the burial services of the Church of England) and excommunication proceedings against her began. James was called to court for a variety of offenses, including hitting a man with a stick, causing upset at church, and another time he and two others were “bound over” for the enormous sum of 66 pounds.
|St. Peter's Church, Sandwich, Kent, where Mary Chilton was baptized|
In 1619, James Chilton was caught with his daughter Isabella in an anti-Arminian (religious followers of Jacobus Arminius) riot in Leiden and he was hit in the head with a rock, requiring a visit to a surgeon.
At age 64, James was the oldest person on board the Mayflower. He brought along his wife and youngest daughter Mary. He died 8 December 1620 on board the Mayflower anchored in Provincetown Harbor. His wife died that first winter, leaving Mary an orphan at 13 years of age.
|Pilgrim Memorial Monument at Provincetown|
After the death of her parents it is likely Mary joined the household of Myles Standish. In 1626 or 1627 Mary married John Winslow, who came on the Fortune in 1621 to join his brother Edward. Governor Bradford wrote that they had nine children. He also wrote that another daughter came to Plymouth after the Mayflower and that she had one child, but he does not give her name.
Mary and John’s children: John, Susanna, Mary, Edward, Sarah, Samuel, Joseph, Isaac, an unnamed child who died young, and Benjamin.
The family resided in Plymouth for many years, but eventually removed to Boston. The house they lived in on Spring Lane is no longer standing. They transferred their church membership upon arriving at Boston to the Third Church, which became the Old South Church. The current Old South Meeting House was built after Mary’s death. John was a very successful merchant.
|Plaque marking the site of Mary Chilton Winslow's home|
John died in Boston in 1674 and Mary died there about 1679. He had written her will in 1676. John and Mary are buried at King’s Chapel Burying Ground in Boston, where they have replacement stones.
|Mary (Chilton) and John Winslow replacement gravestone|
You can view a transcription of Mary’s will and inventory at:
http://www.pilgrimhall.org/willmchiltonwinslow.htm. The site also has a transcription of John Winslow’s will.
A longstanding tradition has held that Mary Chilton was the first of the Mayflower passengers to step onto Plymouth Rock. Charles Thornton Libby carried out a detailed examination of this story, published as Mary Chilton's Title to Celebrity (Boston 1926, rpt. Warwick RI 1978). This seems highly unlikely, but it’s a nice story nonetheless.
My line from James Chilton, not yet submitted to the Mayflower Society:
1 Mary Chilton 1607 - 1679
+John Winslow 1597 - 1674
2 Mary Winslow - 1665
+Edward Gray 1623 - 1681
3 John Gray 1661 - 1732
4 Anne Gray 1691 -
5 Ann Tinkham 1726 - 1758
+Samuel Fuller 1724 - 1758
6 Mary Fuller 1748 - 1802
+Jabez Nye 1749 - 1802
7 Desire Nye 1771 - 1858
+David Pierce 1773 - 1820
8 Lucy Nye Pierce 1809 - 1896
+Rowland Sturtevant Bumpus 1804 - 1853
9 Mary Briggs Bumpus 1840 - 1916
+Seth Washburn 1828 - 1921
10 Charles Francis Washburn 1857 – 1941
+Hattie Maria Benson 1861 - 1914
11 Carrie Clyfton Washburn 1896 - 1974
+George Brewster Smith 1895 - 1913
12 Arthur Elmer Washburn Davis 1913 - 1976
+Mildred Louise Booth 1917 - 1999
13 My parents
Chilton Children’s: http://www.chiltonschildren.org/