Using the Keyword ‘Mayflower’ Can Help You Find Other Pilgrim-Descended Cousins

I can trace my lineage back to at least seven Mayflower Pilgrims, meaning I have a lot of American cousins from each of these lines. I enjoy discovering new information about these cousins, and I’ve found that if I search GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives with my Pilgrim ancestor’s name and the keyword “Mayflower,” I can usually find articles about other Mayflower descendants that mention our common ancestor.

One of these Mayflower ancestors is Pilgrim Thomas Rogers (1571-1621). So, employing the above tactic, I searched for his first and last name with the keyword “Mayflower,” to search for new relatives.

A screenshot of GenealogyBank's search page showing a search for "Thomas Rogers" and "Mayflower"
Source: GenealogyBank

The first result of this search was an Evansville Courier and Press article about the Indiana Society of Mayflower Descendants that mentioned a fellow Rogers cousin.

An article about Edmund Rogers, Evansville Courier and Press newspaper article 19 December 1920
Source: GenealogyBank, Evansville Courier and Press (Evansville, Indiana), 19 December 1920, page 6

According to this article, Edmund J. Rogers was twice a Rogers: he was descended from the Pilgrim Thomas Rogers on his father’s side, and from Captain James Rogers on his mother’s side.

“Not only from Thomas Rogers of the Mayflower could Edmund Rogers trace his descent, but through his mother (also born a Rogers) came Captain James Rogers of the ship Innocence, which cast anchor in Plymouth harbor in 1635.”

The article also reports:

“In 1818 he had driven a four-horse team from Damascus, Conn., to Indiana.”

Damascus, Connecticut?
Never heard of it. I’ll have to look into that.

The rest of the article tells me more about this cousin’s life.

An article about Edmund Rogers, Evansville Courier and Press newspaper article 19 December 1920
Source: GenealogyBank, Evansville Courier and Press (Evansville, Indiana), 19 December 1920, page 6

Edmund began his career as a businessman in 1829, which he continued until he retired in 1870. He then moved to Rockport with his daughter, Celia (Rogers) Laird, who was one of the charter members of the women’s organization the Minerva Club. Hmm… her portrait is on display there – I’ll have to see if they still have it and request a copy.

Interested in learning more about Edmund, I next searched for his name in GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives with the keyword “Rockport.”

A screenshot of GenealogyBank's search page showing a search for Edmund Rogers and "Rockport"
Source: GenealogyBank

This search led me to Edmund’s death notice, also in the Evansville Courier and Press.

An obituary for Edmund Rogers, Evansville Courier and Press newspaper article An obituary for Edmund Rogers, Evansville Courier and Press newspaper article
Source: GenealogyBank, Evansville Courier and Press (Evansville, Indiana), 11 April 1890, page 5

From this article, I learned a little more about his family: his daughter, Celia, was an only child, and Edmund’s grandson, Clarence, was a prominent attorney in Rockport at the time. Edmund died at home with his family at age 90.

Genealogy Tip: Searching for your Pilgrim ancestors in GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives with the keyword “Mayflower” can help you find new articles that mention other Mayflower descendants – and help connect you to new branches of your family.

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