The Nova Scotia Colony of Mayflower Descendants is a group of people who celebrate their descent from one of the 26 families who left progeny after arriving in Plymouth, Massachusetts in the fall of 1620. Many of the people who landed in those first years established families naturally enough in the area surrounding Plymouth and what is now Cape Cod. In 1761, almost 150 years later, a group of people from Sandwich, Massachusetts and surrounding areas answered the call of the Nova Scotia Government and took up the land formerly held by the Acadians in our Province, but which at the time lay vacant after the expulsion of 1755. The founding 5 families of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia and most of the founding families of Barrington, Nova Scotia (also founded in 1761) were Mayflower descendants from the Cape Cod area. For this reason, many people who can trace their ancestry in southwest Nova Scotia to its founders or early settlement are also Mayflower descendants – in fact, the Yarmouth and Shelburne County areas of Nova Scotia probably have more Mayflower descendants per capita than any other place on earth – with almost as many as in New England! Just as an example, the three oldest cemeteries in Port Maitland and Beaver River, NS have over 70 percent of the people buried in them identified as possible Mayflower descendants.
The Colony is made up of people who have proven their Mayflower ancestry and people who are interested in perhaps doing this, or perhaps are just very interested in history and genealogy. To prove one’s descent from a Mayflower passenger, one has to provide documentation for every generation making up one’s line to the ancestor who came on the ship – and that includes documenting every birth, marriage and death to connect back the 12 or more generations. To do this is quite a feat, but it is also a fascinating lesson in history, and the group has many people who would love to help others learn of their ancestry. The Contacts page has listed our Colony Regent and Historian, both of whom would be more than happy to answer questions or comments about our Society or our website.
The Colony meets once a year in person, normally in the fall, and we rotate meetings around the Province. We also have an active Facebook page where people can get together and chat about things Mayflower.