Descendant of Mayflower Pilgrim Constance Hopkins Shares Her Heritage

It’s that time of year when families reflect on their Pilgrim heritage.

An article about descendants of the Mayflower Pilgrims, State newspaper article 26 November 1992
Source: GenealogyBank.com, State (Columbia, South Carolina) 26 November 1992, page 1

Kathy Handel likes to do just that. In fact – she regularly shares her heritage with others. Dressed as her ancestor, Mayflower passenger Constance Hopkins (1606-1677), Handel is seen in this newspaper photo speaking at the Wilson Vocational School in South Carolina.

Constance Hopkins was the daughter of Stephen Hopkins, also a Mayflower passenger. Her stepbrother Oceanus Hopkins (1620-1626) was born on the Mayflower during the voyage to America.

This newspaper article also reports that Marylen Smith Jackson of Williston, South Carolina, “is related to a dozen” Mayflower passengers. She told the State newspaper that “she has had fun as a Mayflower descendant. Last summer she visited Plimoth Plantation, where she talked to actors portraying life as her ancestors knew it.”

An article about descendants of the Mayflower Pilgrims, State newspaper article 26 November 1992
Source: GenealogyBank.com, State (Columbia, South Carolina) 26 November 1992, page 18A

Survey: Please select all that apply and report your results in the comments section:

  • Do you have a Mayflower ancestor?
  • Have you ever given a public talk about your Mayflower ancestor?
  • Have you ever dressed up as your ancestor for Halloween, a Thanksgiving party or other event?

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2 thoughts on “Descendant of Mayflower Pilgrim Constance Hopkins Shares Her Heritage

  1. I am looking for help determining if I am a descendent of Stephen and Constance Hopkins. It appears Constance and Nicholas Snow’s son Joseph married Mary (?) and had a daughter Ruth (b 1679). Ruth married James Brown in 1704, having daughter Rebecca in 1718. Records indicate Rebecca Brown married Jacob Straight in Philadelphia in 1740. There are different theories about Rebecca Brown. Is she a descendant of Constance Hopkins or is this a false lineage? I would appreciate any help with this issue.

  2. Look at the surviving original sources.
    You will need to track all sources over 3-4 generations – from their marriage down – to determine the accuracy of the competing theories you are looking at. The records of the parents, couple, their children, their grandchildren. It might be that the critical information will be found in the records of the great-grandchildren.

    Piecing together all of the newspaper articles, probate records, land records, church and vital records will allow you to build a case for or conclude against the possible theories. By laying out all of the facts – from 3-4 generations will then let you see which conclusion is the accurate one or that by the preponderance of the evidence is the most likely the correct conclusion.

    It is easy when a birth record or probate record is clear and states the facts. You enter them and move on to the next step. In a case like this – you need to track down all of the documents – over multiple generations to see where the facts – and they can be conflicting facts – point you. Without that detailed gathering of the records – you will not be able to untangle competing theories from the 17th century. Let the original records speak for themselves.

    Tom

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