The Worland Family in America and Beyond

I began my life in the Puget Sound area of Washington State, on an island filled with forests and wild rhododendrons. I was separated from my Worland family there at an early age. Recently, I was reunited with my family and learned of my heritage. And so, this journey to know my ancestors began. The Worlands, Gideons, Newtons, Conards... they were the colonists, the settlers, the pioneers. They fought in the American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Civil War. This is their story, and the story of a nation. -Deci Worland MacKinnon

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

June 1743, Connecticut

“Hooker and Company Journeying through the Wilderness from Plymouth to Hartford, in 1636”

June 17, 1743- A daughter, Mercy, is born to Benjamin Harris & Esther Cornwall in Middletown, Middlesex, Connecticut.

June 23, 1743- Jonathan Gipson, son of Deacon Samuel Gipson & Hannah Whitmore, marries Mary Goodrich, daughter of John Goodrich & Mary Tillotson at Middletown, Middlesex, Connecticut.

Places: Middletown, Middlesex, Connecticut

The city of Middletown, located in Middlesex County, lies along the west side of the Connecticut River in the central part of the state. Incorporated as a town in 1650 under its original Native American name of Mattabeseck. it received its present name in 1653.
At the time the first European settlers arrived in the region, the Mattabesetts were a part of the group of tribes in the Connecticut Valley, under a single chief named Sowheag.

Plans for the colonial settlement of "Mattabesett" were drawn up by the General Court in 1646; the first Europeans arrived from nearby Connecticut colonies in 1650.
It received its present name in 1653. The Name Middletown was chosen because the site was approximate halfway between Windsor and Saybrook on the Great River.

Life was not easy among these early colonial Puritans; clearing the land and building homes, and tending farms in the rocky soil of New England was a labor-intensive ordeal. Law, too, was often harsh among the Puritans; offenses legally punishable by death in the Connecticut colonies included, "witchcraft, blasphemy, cursing or smiting of parents, and incorrigible stubbornness of children."

Pequot Mohegans, at that time traditional allies of the English colonists and enemies of the Mattabesett and other local tribes, arrived in the Middletown area in the latter half of the 17th century; conflict between them and local Native American tribes ensued. The Mattabesett and other tribes referred to the Mohegan as "destroyers of men." Sowheag hoped that the colonists would intervene. They did not. Smallpox, too, afflicted the Mattabesett, significantly lessening their ability to resist and their cohesion as a tribe. Records show that, over time, Sowheag was forced to sell off most of the Mattabesett property to the local colonists; by 1676 the Puritans owned all but 300 acres (1.2 km2) of the former Mattabesett territory. Similar milieus of tragic interaction between Native Americans and colonists were common in 17th century New England.

Slavery was part of the early economy of Middletown; African slaves were brought to the town in 1661 from Barbados; by 1756 Middletown had the third largest African slave population in the state of Connecticut—218 slaves to 5,446 whites.

During the 18th century, Middletown became the largest and most prosperous settlement in Connecticut.

 In 1784, the central settlement was incorporated as a city distinct from the town, and in the early 2oth century the city and town consolidated. A busy sailing port and trading center in the 18th and 19th centuries, it later became an industrial and commercial center. Middletown is now mainly residential and is also home to Wesleyan University.

(Mercy Harris is my third cousin 8 times removed. Our common ancestors are William Cornwall & Mary Bailey.
Jonathan Gipson is my third cousin 8 times removed. Our common ancestors is John Whitmore.)

Monday, December 29, 2014

June 1743, Rhode Island

June 12, 1743- A son, Rufus, is born to Captain Jonathan Harrington & Sarah Foster in Scituate, Providence County, Rhode Island.

Family Lore:

Rufus' second great grandfather, John Errington, drowned in 1631 in Boston Harbor shortly after the family's arrival from England.
His son, Benjamin, went to live with an uncle. (Benjamin is Rufus' great grandfather.)  When he was about 15 years old, Ben embraced the Baptist faith, then under ban in Massachusetts. His uncle remonstrated with him without effect, finally punishing him severely and as a final resort tying him to a post and administering a flogging which was most unmerciful; threatening to turn him over to the authorities if he persisted in his heretical opinions. As soon thereafter as possible, he arranged his escape stealing away from his uncle's house penniless and alone with his bible, a fish line and a few other articles done up in a hankerchief and carrying a scanty supply of provisions.

He believed that the God he worshipped would care for him in some way and enable him to reach the Roger Williams settlement in safety. The trust was rewarded when, hungry, footsore and weak, he fell in with a family of Quakers, headed by William White, towards the same goal. They welcomed him, gave of their simple fare, caring for him until he became strong enough to assist them. He repaid them in labor caring for the team or when necessary to unload the wagon. He crossed the swollen streams and ravines, sometimes carrying the oldest daughter Elizabeth. The acquaintance with Elizabeth ripened into an enduring love and soon after their arrival in Providence, Rhode Island, she became his wife and in time the mother of his nine children.

In Providence, they settled on Harrington Lane, now Rochambeau Avenue. He fought in King Phillip's War and acquired considerable property, chiefly land. Possibly because of his bitterness towards his uncle, he changed his name to Herendeen and for two generations the name was spelled Herendeen, Herndern, Hearnden interchangably with Herington, Herrington, and Herrengton.

(John Errington is my tenth great grandfather. Benjamin Hearndon is my ninth great grandfather. Harrington is my first cousin 8 times removed. Our common ancestors are John Harrington & Lydia Cranston.)

Sunday, December 28, 2014

June 1743, Massachusetts

June 6, 1743- A son, Zephaniah, is born to Caleb Sherman & Elizabeth Lawton in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts.

The Surname "Sherman" is English: occupational name for a sheepshearer or someone who used shears to trim the surface of finished cloth and remove excess nap, from Middle English shereman ‘shearer’.

June 21, 1743- A daughter, Abigail, is born to Humphrey Smith & Mary Willcox in Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts Bay, British America.

(Zehaniah Sherman is my third cousin 8 times removed. Our common ancestors are Thomas Lawton & Elizabeth Salisbury.
Abigail Smith is my third cousin 8 times removed. Our common ancestors are Richard Sisson & Mary Atkinson.  )

A Look at Warren Buffet and my Mitochondrial DNA

Warren Buffett KU Visit.jpg
Warren Buffet is also H4a.
A few years ago, I had the gift of meeting my half sister, Carla Anderson. She is ten years my junior, and we share the same birth mother. I flew to the Northwest to meet her, and we have continued our
relationship through facebook, email, text and phone.
Carla recently had her DNA done, and has shared the results. Of course, I am only concerned with the maternal line, as my paternal line is unknown to me.

I now know that my maternal haplogroup is H4, subgroup H4a. Maternal haplogroups are families of mitochondrial DNA types that all trace back to a single mutation at a specific place and time. Haplogroup H, the parent of H4, originated in the Near East and expanded throughout Europe after the peak of the Ice Age. Haplogroup H is the most common and most diverse maternal lineage in Europe, in most of the Near East and in the Caucasus region. The frequency of haplogroup H in Europe usually ranges between 40% and 50%.
H4 soon spun off its own sub-branch, H4a, which spread north and west from the Caucusus region or neighboring Turkey into eastern Europe about 10,000 years ago, possibly in association with the spread of farming. The location of its origin is still not certain. The haplogroup is most common today in Poland, where about 5% of the population carries it.
The next highest concentration of H4a is in Ireland, where about 3% of the population falls into the category. Those people may be descended from women who migrated to Britain and Ireland with 5th- and 6th-century Saxon invaders or during the later Viking period.

In an article published in NATURE COMMUNICATIONS, April 2013, entitled "Neolithic mitochondrial haplogroup H genomes and the genetic origins of Europeans" two skeletons associated with a Bellbeaker Culture burial in southeast Germany were carefully analyzed to H4a, using the most stringent and cutting edge techniques to eliminate any contamination.  Around 2200 BC, this culture was associated with agriculture, including the keeping of livestock, and may also indicate that the origins of the H4a were via the Black Sea, likely through Anatolia (Turkey).