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John Alden (abt. 1626 - 1702)

Captain John Alden
Born about in Plymouthmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married about 1 Apr 1660 in Duxbury, Plymouth, Massachusetts Baymap
Descendants descendants
Died in Boston, Suffolk, Province of Massachusetts Bay, New Englandmap
Profile last modified | Created 10 Jan 2009
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John Alden(Jr) was the first son and second child of John Alden and Priscilla Mullins, who both came to Plymouth in 1620 on the Mayflower. It is known that his parents married in Plymouth, and therefore calculated that John was born in Plymouth.

The Division of Cattle made 22 May 1627, placed John Alden(Sr), Priscilla Alden, and their children Elizabeth and John Alden(Jr) in a lot together. Using the death record of Elizabeth Alden (eldest child of John and Priscilla), we can guess that she was born about 1624-5, placing the marriage of his parents about 1623. This allows a calculated date of birth for John Alden(Jr) 1625-6.

The Alden family began building their home in Duxbury during the summers, possibly completing the home by 1631, and likely living in Duxbury year round. By April, 1632 the family was returning to Plymouth during the winter. The burden of getting the family to public worship and church meetings became great for all families living in Duxbury; and the Alden family was one of many that returned to living in Duxbury year round.

John(Jr) was a member of the Old South Church of Boston. He married at Boston, Massachusetts on April 1, 1660. His wife and mother of their 13 children was Elizabeth Phillips, widow of Abiel Everill. Little is known of Elizabeth (Philips) (Everill) Alden. It is believed she was born before 1640. Although John and Elizabeth had 13 children, only five lived long enough to marry.

For most of his adult life he maintained his residence at Boston. He was a freeman. He was a mariner (Sea Captain), and later he became a naval commander of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He was involved with trade from Virginia to England. He also traded with the French in Nova Scotia. He lost cargo to the Bermuda Company and lost a ship to the Dutch. As a prominent and respected citizen, he also negotiated for the release of captives taken by Indians.

Deputy governor of MA from 1664-1665, 1667.

John Alden was accused of witchcraft in Salem

Once, on a trip to Salem, he was accused of witchcraft, spending 15 weeks in a Boston jail. He escaped shortly before nine others accused of witchcraft were executed. Later he was exonerated.[1]

He was a partner with his father-in-law, William Phillips, in a saw mill at York, Maine and was involved with the settling of Maine.

On January 13, 1686, John Alden(Sr) willed “for that natural love and affection which I bear to my firstborn and dutiful son John Alden of Boston,” 100 acres at Pekard Neck, 100 acres at Rootey Brook, and other deeds of property to John Alden(Jr). The will stipulated that should John(Jr) decide to sell the Rootey Brook property, he was required to give first right of purchase to his brother, David Alden. (Plymouth County Land Records, 5:437)

Elizabeth Phillips Alden was buried at Boston, February 16, 1695/6.

John Alden(Jr) passed away on March 14, 1701/02 at Boston, Massachusetts His ancient slate headstone remains embedded in the wall of the Old South Church of Boston.


John Alden had numerous children:[2][3]

  1. Mary Alden, b. 17 Dec 1659.[3] Mayflower Births and Deaths by Roser (1995) places Mary as the d/o a 1st wife Elizabeth. Mayflower Families Five Generations (1999) includes Mary with the children of Elizabeth Philips. Alden Silver Book (published by General Society of Mayflower Descendants in 2002) confirms that Mary is the daughter of Elizabeth Phillips.
  2. John Alden, b. 20 Nov 1660. d. y.
  3. Elizabeth Alden, b. 9 May 1662; d 14 July 1662
  4. John Alden, b. 12 Mar 1663
  5. William Alden, b. 16 Mar 1664; d. 7 June 1664
  6. Elizabeth (Alden) Willard, b. 9 Apr 1665
  7. William Alden, b. 5 Mar 1666
  8. Zachary Alden, b. 8 Mar 1667
  9. Nathaniel Alden, b. 9 July 1668 (Not listed in Roser)
  10. William Alden, b. 10 Sep 1669
  11. Zachariah Alden, b. 18 Feb 1672
  12. Sarah Alden, bp Old south Church 5 Mar 1674/5, but prob. died before the second Sarah was born.[3] Not included by Roser.
  13. Nathan Alden, b. 17 Oct 1677
  14. Sarah Alden, b. 27 Sep 1681.


  1. “Case Files Referencing John Alden.” Case files referencing John Alden - New Salem - Pelican. Accessed February 25, 2020.
  2. Roser, Susan E. "Mayflower Births and Deaths." Vol 1,& 2 Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Publishing Co., Vol 1 p. 24 link at Ancestry ($)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Family of John Alden. Mayflower Families through Five Generation. Vol 16 part 1. (General Society of Mayflower Descendants, 1999) pp 36, 37

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Comments: 10

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According to the 2002 edition of the Alden Silver Book, John and Elizabeth Alden did NOT have a child named Jonathan. His profile should be detached from these parents. (page 37)
posted by Sandra (Emmons) DeTora
edited by Sandra (Emmons) DeTora
The 2002 Alden Silver Book has the oldest daughter, Mary (born 17 Dec. 1659) as the daughter of John and Elizabeth (Phillips) (Everill) Alden. (page 36)
posted by Sandra (Emmons) DeTora
Thank you Janice, this wife is correct, the listing on the father was incorrect
posted by Anne B
is this the correct wife? father's page shows

John b.c. 1626 m. Elizabeth (____) Everill

not Elisabeth Phillips. I think this is off one generation

posted by Janice Sutherland
As far as I can tell this person is non-existent and should be merged away.
posted by Anne B
Please see G2G discussion
posted by Anne B
Alden-2706 and Alden-6 appear to represent the same person because: same parents and dates
posted by Robin Lee
There are children attached here who are not on the official list of children. viz. Zachariah b. 1641 (wrong generation), Nathaniel b. 1668, Sarah 1675, Jonathan b. 1668 (in Baltimore?). They may belong to other parents.

Update Mary is ok child of 1st wife.

posted by Anne B
Alden-23 and Alden-545 do not represent the same person because: Different families. One of them has the wrong dates. An older reference has both Nathan and Nathaniel as sons of John Jr and Elizabeth.
posted by Becky (Nally) Syphers
Alden-23 and Alden-545 appear to represent the same person because: I can find no evidence for a Nathaniel b. this date. Nathan was the son of John and Elizabeth Phillips. Please merge. Thanks.
posted by Vic Watt