Myths and Unproven Theories
There are a number of myths running rampant on the Internet concerning Gabriel Wheldon. Please feel free to post and discuss them here if you come across others. Use this page also to discuss unproven theories.
MYTH: Gabriel in Salem 1629
MYTH: Gabriel WHELDON a fisherman came to Salem in 1629 on the ship "Lyons Whelp", later removed in 1638 to Yarmouth, MA. This apparently comes from Plymouth Colony Records, 2:21.
- FACT: PCR Vol. II, p. 21 (Court Orders, 1641-1651), while including a reference to Gabriel Whelden, has nothing to do with Salem or the Lyons' Whelp. It is an event that is dated 17-Jun-1641, and reads:
- Will[ia]me Lumpkine & Hugh Tilly shall pay to Gabriell Wheildon 15s. for his third part of the skiff or boat they were partners in, & his damage sustained in the want thereof to fetch fish to fish his corn withal, and the boat or skiff to be theirs.
- In addition, he does not appear on the partial passenger list in Banks' "Planters," which apparently lists passengers on the "Lyons Whelp."
MYTH: Last wife Margaret was an Indian Princess [24 November 2009]
MYTH: Gabriel's last wife (and mother of Ruth) was Margaret Diguina. Originally claimed in From Out of the Past: The Bearce Family by Franklyn Bearce. But a reading of this document demonstrates a severe lack of documentation.
- REALITY: This theory was soundly challenged in 1939 in "Austin Bearse and his alleged Indian Connections," by Donald Lines Jacobus (TAG 15:115, 1938). While Jacobus was unable to prove who Margaret was, he makes a very strong case that she was NOT a Wampanoag Indian. Despite this, descendants continue to be enamoured with the idea that their fore-mother was an Indian Princess from the Wampanoag tribe, and that she was the mother of Ruth Whelden who married Richard Taylor.
- Further evidence against this theory can be read in the October 2009 Register, specifically "The Origins of Gabriel Whelden of Yarmouth and Malden, Massachusetts," which finds the baptisms of Gabriel's children, including Ruth, baptized in 1626 in Basford, Nottinghamshire between 1612 and 1630, last record of Gabriel in England as late as 1638, and first record of him in Massachusetts in 1639.
21 Jun 1650 birth of Sarah Whelden??? [4 January 2010]
Where is this birth? I've looked for it everywhere. Please advise. Jillaine 16:55, 24 November 2009 (EST)
- [This was originally next to the first reference to Sarah on the Person page, but I deleted it and moved it here. I assume you didn't see it.]
- The birth in Source:Mayflower Descendant, p. 16:236, "Plymouth Colony Vital Records",
1650 yarmouth Regester of ye beirthes of children
Sara Whilden born the twentyone of June
clearly does not name her parents, but given that Gabriel is about 60 years old and lives in Malden, and that Henry Wheldon was listed as a freeman of Yarmouth in 1643 and married there in 1648, Sarah is most probably Henry's daughter, not Gabriel's. --Jrich 14:13, 24 November 2009 (EST)
- I've been doing more thinking about this. First off, when did Gabriel leave Yarmouth for Malden? Do we know? We know he was there by his 1654 death, but how soon did he get there? When is the earliest record of him being there?
- The reason I ask is that there is the mystery of the Sarah Taylor who dies single and intestate in 1695; the probate of her estate names her siblings: John, Joseph, Mary, Martha, Ann, Hannah, Elizabeth. When you compare this list to the probate of those individuals' father, Richard Taylor, tailor, you notice that four of them match AND that the administration of his estate makes reference to TWO sons and FIVE daughters. That's seven children. But Sarah would have been a SIXTH daughter. Why was she not referred to in the estate of Richard Taylor, tailor? I would suggest she is not counted because she was not an HEIR of Richard Taylor, tailor. BUT her probate clearly calls the above individuals her sisters and brothers. Is it at all possible that she actually WAS a dau of Gabriel by his last wife, Margaret, and that Margaret went back to England without her? That she was raised with a Whelden half-sibling and changed her name to Taylor? I realize this is a huge stretch, but I just find the above facts so odd. Jillaine 15:56, 3 January 2010 (EST)
- I am not all that familiar with the Taylors. My interest here is the Wheldens, and what I know of Taylors is only reflected light. But if only four siblings overlap, there are non-overlapping others to account for, plus Sarah, suggesting there are actually approaching a dozen children needed to account for all the names. All those names (including Taylor) are very common, so I suspect Sarah is from a different Taylor family.
- Not sure where you're coming up with a dozen names. The administration of the estate of RT, tailor, makes specific reference to 2 sons and five daughters. Of these seven, four are named: John, Joseph, Mary and Martha. Those four are also referenced in the probate of Sarah Taylor, PLUS: Ann, Hannah (Crocker in Sarah's probate) and Elizabeth. Including Sarah, that comes to eight, not seven.
- The children of the other Taylor family in Yarmouth (RT, "rock") is listed in a 1677 Yarmouth town record; they were: Richard, Mehitable, Jasher, Hannah, Elisha, Mary. As you see, there are only two overlapping names: Hannah, who is called Hannah Jenkins in her father's will and therefore distinct from the Hannah Crocker above; and Mary, who is not named in her father's 1693 will, so therefore likely dead by this time (all other children, but Jasher, also named).
- The idea of Margaret leaving behind a child seems somewhat implausible to me. Changing of the name would probably result in references to Whelden alias Taylor.
- Yeah, it is far-fetched, but it's just buggin' me... Jillaine 15:49, 4 January 2010 (EST)
- Sorry, I was assuming if 4 overlapped between two lists of seven, three didn't in each list, plus Sarah gives eleven children. I was further confused by looking at the wrong Richard Taylor as you surmised. Told you I wasn't all that familiar with the Taylors. So, I reread some of it, and reviewing, a deposition says there were five daughters, only two (Mary and Martha) are named in his inventory, but there is evidence that Sarah, Ann, Hannah and Elizabeth are also his daughters. So I guess raising Sarah Whelden would be one answer, though you would think she would call them nieces and nephews, or possibly cousins as was typical then. Barring some legal peculiarity, like the deposition being wrong, or one child did not participate in the division of the estate having already received their share, another situation I can think of is that Mary was married before and one of the four is a half-sister from that first marriage. Thus, not an heir of Richard, but still likely to be considered a sister in colonial usage. Sarah's surname seems to be Taylor, raising the possibility that one of the other three is the half-sister in this scenario. Oddly there is some confusion on Elizabeth's surname when she married Samuel Cobb. Hannah's birth is a little off on her page, but it appears to simply be wrong, since b. 1667 isn't consistent with marriage in 1679/80, and the half-sister would need to be older anyway, not younger, for this to work. I don't know, guess I am just rambling... --Jrich 18:34, 4 January 2010 (EST)
- Regarding Gabriel moving to Malden, most sources seem to indicate Gabriel left Yarmouth about 1647/8 but nothing precise. I think it is believed he moved to follow Marmaduke Matthews, who left Yarmouth about that time. But Matthews went to Hull first, before going to Malden maybe 1650? and I am not sure if Gabriel also moved twice? James W. Hawes in Cape Cod Library: "It appears that before May 14, 1648 he had sold land in Yarmouth to Edward Sturgis". Pope says he went to Lynn at this time. Margaret Whelding signed a petition on behalf of Rev. Matthews "28.8.51", and that is the first documented evidence that I am aware of, Gabriel's appointment as surveyor of highways in 1 Jun 1647 would be the last evidence in Yarmouth that I am aware of. --Jrich 09:54, 4 January 2010 (EST)
And... what would we do without Google? Using the text you provided, I found a copy of this page here (hope that works).
The full context is this:
Mayflower Descendant, Volume 16, pp 235-237
Plymouth Colony Vital Records
1650 yarmouth Regester of ye beirthes of children
- Sara Whilden born the twentyone of June
- Nicholas Eldred August the eighteenth
- Daniell Baker September the 2cond
- Josepth Winge about the same time
- Willam Gray october the fift
- Sara Eldred october the tenth
- John Hallot December the eleventh
- Martha Tayler the eighteenth of the same <- I WONDERED WHERE THIS WAS COMING FROM!
- Hester Mathues January the 8th
- Abija Marchant 10th of the same
burialls at yarmouth 1650
- Ann Taylwer was buried the 29th of March aged about a yeare and an halfe
- Josepth Sturgis was buried the 16th of aprell about ten Daies old
- a son of Thomas Gage was drownded in a well aged about a yeare and an halfe--Jillaine 20:04, 24 November 2009 (EST)