Mayflower Descendants

The Mayflower

Are you a Mayflower Descendant? Millions of people are descendants of one of the passengers on the Mayflower, but not many people have traced their lineage back far enough to realize it. There are several genealogical societies that keep track of the Mayflower descendants, including the descendants who are famous.

The Mayflower Passengers

In September 1620, the Mayflower left England heading for the New World. Much of the history of the voyage of the Mayflower is taken from the accounts of two passengers: William Bradford and Edward Winslow. The ship had 102 passengers who planned to leave the ship, once it reached America, to begin a new life in the colonies. The voyage took 66 days in which only two passengers died in the journey. The Mayflower entered Cape Cod Bay and stayed there until March of of 1621 when all surviving passengers went ashore at Plymouth Rock. Due to an outbreak of scurvy, pneumonia and tuberculosis, only 53 survived and went ashore. The Mayflower passengers are a symbol of the beginning of the colonization of the Americas. Over half of the passengers on the Mayflower were considered as English dissenters or pilgrims who wanted religious freedom.

Mayflower Compact

The Mayflower compact was devised and signed while the ship was still in the Cape Cod harbor to restore and ensure order once the passengers set foot on land. 41 of the passengers were adult males who signed the Mayflower Compact. The compact was an agreement between the pilgrims and the King of England to plant the first colony in northern Virginia. People descending from a Mayflower passenger will be from one of the following signers of the Mayflower Compact::

  • John Carver
  • William Bradford
  • Edward Winslow
  • William Brewster
  • Isaac Allerton
  • Myles Standish
  • John Alden
  • Samuel Fuller
  • Christopher Martin
  • William Mullins
  • William White
  • Richard Warren
  • John Howland
  • Stephen Hopkins
  • Edward Tilly
  • John Tilly
  • Francis Cooke
  • Thomas Rogers
  • Thomas Tinker
  • John Rigdale
  • Edward Fuller
  • John Turner
  • Francis Eaton
  • James Chilton
  • John Crackston
  • John Billington
  • Moses Fletcher
  • John Goodman
  • Degory Priest
  • Thomas Williams
  • Gilbert Winslow
  • Edmon Margeson
  • Peter Brown
  • Richard Britteridge
  • George Soule
  • Richard Clarke
  • Richard Gardiner
  • John Allerton
  • Thomas English
  • Edward Doty
  • Edward Leister

Famous Descendants of the Mayflower Passengers

Eight United States presidents are descendants of a Mayflower passenger, as are several actresses, politicians, astronauts and intellectuals. Following is a list of a famous person followed by the Mayflower passenger from whom they are descended.

Presidents and Politicians

  • John Adams and John Quincy Adams - John Alden
  • President Zachary Taylor - Issac Allerton
  • President Ulysses S. Grant - Richard Warren
  • President James Garfield-John Billington
  • President Franklin D. Roosevelt-Richard Warren
  • Presidents George Bush Senior and Junior-John Howland
  • Politician Sarah Palin-Henry Samson
  • Politician Dan Quayle-Myles Standish


  • Alan B. Shepard-Richard Warren

Actors and Singers

  • Marilyn Monroe-John Alden
  • Orson Welles-John Alden
  • Clint Eastwood-William Bradford
  • Alec and Stephen Baldwin-John Howland
  • Humphrey Bogart-John Howland
  • Dick Van Dyke-Myles Standish
  • Christopher Lloyd-John Howland
  • Richard Gere-Samuel Fuller
  • Christopher Reeve-William Bradford
  • Singer Bing Crosby-William Brewster

Authors and Publishers

  • Noah Webster of Webster's dictionary-William Bradford
  • Poet Ralph Waldo Emerson-Elizabeth Tilley
  • Poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow-John Alden
  • Publisher Hugh Hefner-William Bradford


  • George Eastman of the Eastman Kodak Company-William Bradford

Military Commander

  • George McClellan-William Bradford

Religious Leaders

  • Joseph Smith-John Howland

Mayflower Connections

If you think you are connected to a Mayflower descendant, start your genealogy research with the information you already have and go backwards until the 1600's. After you have reached one of the names of a Mayflower passenger you will find that most of them have had their genealogy research done back a few hundred to a thousand years. The following societies will help you in your research and also allow you to register as a descendant of one of the passengers. An ancestor DNA test may be required to prove you are a Mayflower Descendant.

Mayflower passengers may also have their own genealogical page:

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Mayflower Descendants