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Descendants of Deacon William Douglas, b1610


Descendants of Deacon William Douglas, b1610

Researching all the living descendants of Deacon William Douglas, and attempting to confirm his ancestory.

Location: Worldwide
Members: 31
Latest Activity: Nov 3, 2023

Deacon William Douglas

There are conflicting reports as to the origins of William Douglas, and some of the theories have already been challenged, if not disproved, by the dna project.

There are suggestions as to travel on the Mayflower (second voyage), though that too seems unlikely.

Whatever his origins, he founded a dynasty.

All contributions to this study are very welcome

Discussion Forum

New son for William Douglas b 1666 New London and wife Hannah

Started by Betsey Heath Howes. Last reply by Betsey Heath Howes Oct 4, 2020. 2 Replies


Started by William Douglas. Last reply by Russell Lynn Drysdale Nov 9, 2015. 9 Replies

Douglas and the Mayflower

Started by Beverley Poling. Last reply by William Douglas Oct 23, 2012. 4 Replies

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Comment by John Douglas on November 3, 2023 at 14:09

I am a descendent of John Douglas (b. 1617), brother of Deacon William Douglas (christened July 22 1609 in Easton Maudit). According to my research, William married Anne Motley (of Denford , Northamptonshire) in 1635 in Easton Maudit and had a daughter Ann, b.1936. Denford is 10 miles from where I was born. John and William were grandsons of William Duglas who arrived in Easton Maudit before 1571, and sons of William Dugleys (b. 1571 d. 1654).

Comment by Michael P Mccann on May 12, 2020 at 5:58

yDNA is R1a1a/R-M512 is that the general idea here? r1b1.. While U raise a good point about religon.. I belive when A  semi dirrect line desendant such as  edward fenner iii  tests with family tree dna and it says .R1b1b2 or r1b1    Based on your findings right? .  not that this whole dna thing really matters to me anyway because i can get royal lines else where dirrect or indirrect dont matter to me because unless i,m the president I wont get a invite to windsor castle anyway but Just currious to know..   can some one please simpifly this 

Comment by Dorothy Phelps Gellai on May 11, 2020 at 18:41

Thank you, William Hough and Robin Spencer!  

Comment by Robin Spencer on May 11, 2020 at 14:57

That pretty much nails it -- Ringstead Northamptonshire is 50 mi from Haverhill, closer than Ringstead Norfolk -- in other words the two Ringsteads are both well within the general area from which the Puritans emigrated.  So his wife's paper trail, complete lack of Scottish Y DNA and plausible English Y DNA, plus Puritan religion, make a good case for Deacon Douglas's English origin.

Comment by William W. Hough on May 11, 2020 at 2:29

We have always believed that William Douglas' wife Anne was from the Ringstead in Northamptonshire, not the one in Norfolk.  There are parish baptism records for two older brothers there, but not Anne.  The real evidence is the documented testimony of Anne given when she was in her 60s in New England as sole living heir of Thomas Mattle of Ringstead, Northamptonshire.  This testimony is covered extensively in the Douglas genealogy by Charles Henry James Douglas, viewable on Google Books, pages 60 and 515-517.  

A lot of searches for William, including his marriage to Anne, in parish records of Northamptionshire have been unsuccessful.  But there are baptism records for three children born to them before they sailed for America, all in London:

Anne: Baptized June 12, 1636 at St Mary Bothaw, London, London, England, father Willia Dowglasse.

Elizabeth: Christened at St. Mary Whitechapel, Stepney, London, England November 29, 1637, father William Dowglas, mother Anne. Elizabeth died in March 1639/40 and is buried "Elizabeth Dowglasse" on March 12, 1639/40, same church.

Robert: Christened at St. Mary Whitechapel, Stepney, London, England March 6, 1638 (1639), father William Dowglasse, mother Anne. (Stepney is now Tower Hamlets).  

William, Anne, Anne Jr. and Robert sailed for America a year after Robert was born.  

The two parishes where the three children were baptized were Church of England parishes.  I haven't found a marriage record for William and Anne in London.  

Comment by Robin Spencer on May 10, 2020 at 23:56

Y DNA and religion suggest not Scottish and most likely from East Anglia.   Greater precision would have to rely on paper genealogy. Ringstead is about 50 miles from Haverhill, Fischer's center-point, a good day's horse ride, and if there's reason to expect a paper trail there it would be worth investigating.

Comment by Dorothy Phelps Gellai on May 10, 2020 at 23:26

Right, Pilgrims are not same as Puritans.  Thank you for pointing out this map, I had not seen this before.  So, you'd say that Deacon William Douglass was most likely from somewhere around Ringstead, Norfolk, England?  

Comment by Robin Spencer on May 10, 2020 at 21:43

Pilgrims (i.e. Mayflower) were not the same as Puritans.  Puritans origins were strongly in East Anglia:  see Fischer, Albion's Seed, map p 32 and quote p 31: "A circle drawn around the town of Haverhill [Suffolk] with a radius of 60 miles will circumscribe the area from which most New England families came." 

Comment by Dorothy Phelps Gellai on May 10, 2020 at 21:06

True, he was a Puritan, with Calvinistic roots. That's a very good point. Presbyterian churches came later when the Scots and Irish-Scots who migrated a bit later to New England, New York State, and New Jersey. My Puritan ancestors were from all over England, not just East Anglia.  This link  gives a small glimpse of the Mayflower passengers' English towns. 

William Douglass supposedly married his wife Ann in Ringstead, England - Ringstead, Norfolk, England which is in East Anglia or Ringstead, Northamptonshire, England in central England?  Did anyone actually find old records on Douglas family or they don't exist anymore?  Thank you!  

Comment by Robin Spencer on May 10, 2020 at 15:52

Deacon Wm Douglas's religion is also suggestive:  he was a Puritan, a member of the First Church of Boston -- not a Presbyterian.  This also makes him more likely to have been from East Anglia rather than Scotland.


Members (31)


Making conections

The more information you can give about the people you mention, the more chance there is of someone else connecting with your family.

Dates and places of births, deaths and marriages all help to place families.

Professions also help.

'My great-grandmother mother was a Douglas from Montrose' does not give many clues to follow up! But a bit of flesh on the bones makes further research possible. But if we are told who she married, what his profession was and where the children were baptised, then we can get to work.

Maybe it is time to update the information in your profile?

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