Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Stephen Deane - Our 9th Great-Grandfather

When I started investigating our colonial ancestors, I had no idea that our family first arrived on American shores in 1621. This was just one year after the Mayflower arrived in Plymouth Bay. As mentioned in the last post, almost one-half of the passengers who arrived aboard the Mayflower in 1620 did not survive the winter.
It is thought that our ancestor, Stephen Deane, was born in Southwark, Surrey, England. He arrived aboard the Fortune the on November 9th, 1621 in the fall following the arrival of the Mayflower, in Provincetown, Cape Cod, Massachusetts. This was the second ship to arrive in Plymouth Bay successfully, but the new arrivals were hardly a welcome addition. They arrived with very few supplies, and thus added to the burden of the Mayflower survivors who had already suffered too much.

Born about 1605, Stephen arrived in America as a single man. His occupation was listed as "miller." He met and married Elizabeth Ring. Together they became the parents of three daughters: Elizabeth (1630), Miriam (1632), and Susanna (1634), Elizabeth married William Twining in Eastham, MA about 1650, Miriam married John Wing in 1662/63, and Susanna married Joseph Rogers in 1660, grandson of Thomas Rogers of the Mayflower. In 1663, Susanna married her second husband, Stephen Snow.

Stephen Deane was a successful businessman. In 1627, he bought an additional acre of property from William Delaney. In 1632, he was given permission to open a corn mill, probably his second, adjoining the town of Plymouth. The agreement allowed him to collect a toll of one pottle (half gallon) of each bushel ground. Stephen's biography is listed below.

Unfortunately, Stephen died before the age of 30, leaving his widow, Elizabeth Ring Deane, with three young children. I've not been able to find a cause of death. Elizabeth would later marry Josiah Cooke, who graciously became the stepfather of Elizabeth's children.

The Great Migration: Immigrants to New England

Additional References:

Master Profile for Stephen Deane on

Excellent reference for the arrival of Stephen Deane, his subsequent marriage to Elizabeth Ring and their children.

Find A Grave - includes a short biography of Stephen Deane

Boston Globe article about Stephen Deane reenactment: Boston Globe: Pilgrim for a Day

Nasalroad Family Genealogy

Passengers of 1621 Fortune Voyage


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