The World of Grandpa Don

The Family Brier Patch

Families split and go in different directions but often reunite in later generations.

This is their story, as I know it.

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I had been exchanging emails with James Wright regarding common interests with our family trees and the subject of having, as he put it, of "multiple trees growing into each other". Indeed I have. He was referring to having a common ancestor in two or more branches of a tree resulting in the marriage of cousins.

In my case we have the instance of these being 1st cousins in the marriage of Isaac Thayer (1695-?) & Miriam Thayer (1699-1749) See Thayer Family. They were my 5th great grandparents. This was not all that uncommon at the time.

Then we have the Doolittle Family. Abraham Doolittle (1649-1732)  & Mercy Holt (1649-1688 ) They were my 7th great grandparents and had sons, John and Abraham hoe initiated 2 branches of descendants. Five generations later, 4th cousins, Chauncey Butler Doolittle (1803-1863) & Delight A Dean (1820-1897) married to be my 2nd great grandparents.

Also, John Hall (1605-1676 & Jane Woolen ( - 1690), my 8th great grandparents had a pair of sons who married and initiated a similar line of descendants. One branch subsequently merged with the Doolittle line, while the other Married into the Royse line which then rejoined the Doolittle line. Those Doolittles did a lot.

We also have the Bass Family wherein Samuel Bass (1600-1694) & Anne Saville (1601-1693), my 8th great grandparents, had a son who's granddaughter married into the Copeland family. Her mother was Ruth Alden, granddaughter of John Alden of Mayflower fame. Another son of Samuel had a daughter who married married into the Thayer family. Of course Alden Copeland was my father and Jenny Marcia Thayer was his mother.

And then there is the amazing Atherton/Weeks family. Joseph Weeks married Elizabeth Atherton in 1677. They were my 7th great grandparents and initiated 3 lines of descendants which later reemerged into my line.
1) Repent Weeks married Joseph Pomeroy and their line merged into the Clapp family and thence the Copeland line.
2) Mary Weeks joined the Green Family and they merged with the Cooke line then the Bullen line and subsequently the Doolittle line (there they are again) and finally the Copeland family.
3) And finally, Renew Weeks married Benjamin Carpenter. Several generations later there was a marriage to the Bingham line which then merged with the Copeland family line.

But after the discovery of the Hunt line of ancestors we discovered that they were also connected to our Atherton ancestors making another connection in the web.

We also have a similar loop connection from John Strong and Abigail Ford. Two of their children, Sarah and Mary are the matriarchs of separate lines that merge in future generations.

In researching Thomas Cushman(1670-1726), my 8th great grandfather, I discovered that his second wife was the granddaughter of William Carpenter, my 9th great grandfather, This is another example of families diverging and rejoining generations later or, another way of looking at it is the intermarriage of ancestor families.

All these families are on my father's side of my lineage. Jim Wright suggested that our trees looked less like trees and more like a brier patch and I have to agree. I have found many instances of intermarriages between the Copeland, Thayer, Cooke, Alden, and even the Packard families in New England before 1700. My maternal grandmother was a Packard. I strongly suspect that my mother and father could have been 6th, or 7th cousins but at this point can not prove it.




Grandpa Don Plefka
aka Harry Ronald Cecora
 March 10, 2014


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