Monday, November 9, 2015

Tales from a San Francisco Window Seat --- Day 4/283

Walk: No.  Nice quiet day nursing cold on window seat with cat in the sun
Distance: 0, two home yoga practices

Ciwt has been wrong all these years about her family coming over on the Mayflower.MayflowerHarbor.jpg   As it turns out Ciwt's family arrived 13 years later on the sailing ship Griffin which had left Downs, England and arrived with its 200 adults and one new on board infant at Plymouth, Massachusetts on September 3, 1633.  

Sailing in late summer might have meant the Griffin's voyage was slightly smoother than the Mayflower's late fall 1620 passage with approximately 132 passengers and crew.  The winds of September are known to make the Atlantic treacherous, and indeed it was a miserable passage for the Mayflower with huge waves constantly crashing against its upper deck.  Image result for mayflower shipThe Griffin's early Fall arrival must also have been more advantageous for its the colony of religious dissidents than for the Mayflower Pilgrims who lost half their number in the first, harsh New England winter.

Most likely the Griffin was a similar ship only perhaps larger, both built as mercantile cargo ships. And, with luck, the Griffin would not have been built with the 30-foot high, square aft-castle which made hard sailing against the North Atlantic's westerlies and was the direct cause of the Mayflower's voyage taking over two months. With more knowledge, perhaps modifications had been made to the awkward superstructure on future ships such as the Griffin and their voyages were considerably swifter, although still arduous.

Ciwt's ancestor on the Griffin was Stephen Post (b. 1596, Kent, England), a member of the congregation of non-conformist English minister, Reverend Thomas Hooker. He was granted 12 acres in New Towne (now Cambridge, Massachusetts) where he lived with his young family. But, within in three years, for unknown reasons, Hooker's people - including Stephen Post - migrated as a body in 1735 or 1736 to the Connecticut River Valley. There they founded the city of Hartford and Post was one of its first proprietors.         
(Hartford Founder's Monument in the Ancient Burying Ground)

Apparently city living wasn't for Post, and he made a forage and exploration to Saybrook, Connecticut in 1645.  There he again became a proprietor, was granted (ie, paid for) 250 acres of choice land when Saybrook was first divided and died in 1645 with 442 pounds, 3 shillings and a 6 pence - cash on the barrel head, not including land.

Honestly, Ciwt's grandmother could have told you these things and much more - conversationally off the top of her head - about Stephen and the Post Family as it grew, intermarried with other founding families, settled and established throughout Connecticut and New England. Such interesting stuff to Ciwt.  And a sad loss when the 'first hand' stories 'died' along with her grandmother (in her beloved city where she was known to all as The Grand Dame of Hartford).

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