||John Elderkin Jr. migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).|
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John Elderkin was born in 1616 in England, some authorities say 1612 but in a court dispostion he gave in 1672 he states that he is 56 years old. An extensive biography is available in John Elderkin, One of the Founders of Connecticut. He was married twice, his first wife was Abigail. They were married about 1637. His second was to Elizabeth Drake Gaylord, daughter of John Drake and widow of William Gaylord, of Windham. They were married March 1, 1660. She died at Norwich in 1716. John Elderkin the second is the son of Elizabeth Drake and John. John the first, died in 1687 in Norwich, Connecticut, while the place of his burial is not known, his memorial has links to memorials for two of his children as well as a link to the book mentioned above the primary source for this brief sketch.
John Elderkin was also a reputed contractor and Builder. He was recruited successfully to move from Providence Rhode Island by Governor Winthrop. He built the first two churches in both Norwich and New London, Connecticut. He also built the first Merchant ship ever produced at New London in 1661 He was joined in this endeavor by Richard Hendee Sr. in 1660-1661. John Elderkin was also a owner and builder of Several Mills both for Grain and Lumber. He was Granted many parcels of Land for his labors and Built many thriving businesses. He passed many of these businesses to Descendents and the Elderkin Family became one of the Wealthiest families in Connecticut. His 2nd wife Elizabeth was a direct descendent of Royalty in England and his association with Governor Winthrop is well documented. He is credited with building the first Town Meeting Hall in Norwich and for building Churches with pews which were status segregated in the churches. The allotment of this seating by status was very contentious; however, it lasted for Generations and became a source of Much Conflict among the Early Pioneers.
One source had Abigail Fowler as mother of John Elderkin Sr, but it seems that she was the wife of John Elderkin, Jr.
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