Calkins Family in America
About the year 1640, an English couple, Hugh and Ann Calkins with their five children, boarded a vessel sailing from Wales. They joined an emigrant group of congregants and passengers under the leadership of Reverend Richard Blynman, and were known as the Welsh Company. The Calkins family left their home in Chester, England, heading to the new world, seeking among other things, religious freedom and the chance to own land. They traveled with children Sarah, Mary, Rebecca, John, and most likely David, leaving behind an infant child named Deborah, recently buried in the church yard at Waverton, England.
The group’s ship left from Chepstow, Monmouthsire, Wales, a county that borders on England–hence the name “The Welsch Company”. Calkins church records have been found in Gloucestershire, Cheshire, and Staffordshire, England.
There are a few records of other Calkins coming to the western hemisphere but 90% of Calkins, no matter how you spell the name Calkin, Caulkins, Corkins, Cawkin, etc, connect back to this immigrant family.
Research of the early church records found that Hugh Calkins, was christened on 8 April 1603 in Waverton, England, just southeast of Chester, and was the son of Rowland and Elen or Ellen Payne Calkins. There are records of Hugh’s three eldest children in those records: Sarah, Mary and Rebecca.
We know little about Ann Calkins, Hugh’s wife. While her surname at times is shown to be Eaton or Eston, there is no evidence of this.
The Welsh Company landed at Plymouth Colony, which had been established about 20 years by then. They settled briefly at Green’s Harbor near Marshfield, MA, about 11 miles away. The next year, 1641, they moved to Gloucester, MA, Cape Ann area, where Hugh Calkins was a Freeman in the church the group built there. A daughter was born in Gloucester 18 March 1643/44, also named Deborah, making her the first Calkins born in America. Daughter Rebecca, passed away about 1650/1 aged 20 in Gloucester. After about 10 years, 1651, the original Welsh Party along with Rev. Blynman, moved to Pequot Harbor and founded the town of New London, CT. They were known as the Cape Ann Company in that move.
Blynman returned to England in 1659 where he spent the rest of his life. Hugh and Ann along with son John and daughter Deborah, and their families, moved upstream and founded the town of Norwich, CT. Son David and his sisters Sarah and Mary along with their families, stayed in New London, CT.
We can only wonder if Hugh and Ann ever imagined that their perilous journey across the Atlantic Ocean would yield such a large crop of descendants. We come from good stock.
First CALKINS Family in America
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