NameElizabeth Tilley
Birthbef 30 Aug 1607, Henlow, Bedfordshire, England360,361,362,271,286,363,364,231,291
Christen30 Aug 1607, Henlow, Bedfordshire, England234,362,271,364,231,291
Death21 Dec 1687, Swansea, Bristol, MA234,271,286,77,277,365
BurialBrown Lot, Litttle Neck Cem, Riverside, RI255
FatherJohn Tilley (<1571-1620)
MotherJoan Hurst (<1567-<1620)
Birthca 1592, Fenstanton, Huntingdonshire, England234,271,285,287,355
Death23 Feb 1672/1673, Rocky Nook, Kingston, MA234,264,271,290,356,357,277,358,287,355
Burial25 Feb 1672/1673, Burial Hill, Plymouth, Plymouth, MA255,359,287,355
FatherHenry Howland (1564-1635)
MotherMargaret (1567-1629)
Marriageca 1625, Plymouth, Plymouth, MA362,271,286,291
ChildrenDesire (ca1625-1683)
 John (1627-)
 Hope (1629-1683)
 Elizabeth (ca1631-)
 Lydia (ca1633-)
 Hannah (ca1637-)
 Joseph (ca1640-)
 Jabez (ca1644-)
 Ruth (ca1646-)
 Isaac (1649-)
Notes for Elizabeth Tilley
She was also said to have died 21 Feb. 1687/8. 363, 291

Elizabeth Tilley was the fifth and youngest child of John Tilley and his wife Joan (Hurst) Rogers. She was the only child of her parents recorded as coming with them to America. At the time of her marriage, she was not quite 16 years of age.234

When Elizabeth Tilley's parents, John and Joan Tilley, and her uncle, Edward Tilley, died the first winter, Elizabeth Tilley became part of the Carver household. Roger Wilder died the first winter. Governor Carver died a few months later, in April 1621, and his wife died in May 1621. Jaspar More died 6 Dec 1621 and the servant maid died soon after. That left John Howland as the head of the household containing four people, including Elizabeth Tilley, Desire Minter and the boy, William Latham.234

Ref:Plymouth Colony Its History and People 1620-1691, by Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Ancestry Publishing, SLC, 1986. Died at the home of her daughter Lydia Browne.
Ref to CHRISTENING: Mayflower Quarterly, 47:146-147.
Ref to DEATH: Stratton, Eugene A., Plymouth Colony, Its History and People 1620-1691, Salt Lake City, 1973, p 312; Plymouth Church Records.

Her birthplace is also listed as Henlow, Bedfordshire, England.280

Her death has also been listed as 21 Feb 1687/8. She was the only child of her parents recorded as coming to America with them. Her will dated 17 Dec. 1686 says ‘being seventy nine yeares of Age.’361

Although it has apparently been claimed that she was the daughter of John Tilley and Catherine (White) Leggatt , but this has been disproved.424

From Caleb’s Web Page:

Will of Elizabeth (Tilley) Howland


In ye Name of God Amen I Elizabeth Howland of Swanzey in ye County of
Bristoll in ye Collony of Plymouth in New Engld being Seventy nine yeares of
Age but of good & perfect memory thanks be to Allmighty God & calling to
Remembrance ye uncertain Estate of this transitory Life & that all fflesh
must Yeild unto Death when it shall please God to call Doe make constitute &
ordaine & Declare This my last Will & Testament, in manner & forme following
Revoking and Anulling by these prsents all & every Testamt & Testamts Will &
Wills heretofore by me made & declared either by Word or Writing And this to
be taken only for my last Will & Testament & none other. And first being
penitent & sorry from ye bottom of my heart for all my sinns past most
humbly desiring forgivenesse for ye same I give & Committ my soule unto
Allmighty God my Savior & redeemer in whome & by ye meritts of Jesus Christ
I trust & believe assuredly to be saved & to have full remission &
forgivenesse of all my sins & that my Soule wt my Body at the generall Day
of Resurrection shall rise againe wt Joy & through ye meritts of Christs
Death & passion possesse & inheritt ye Kingdome of heaven prepared for his
Elect & Chosen & my Body to be buryed in such place where it shall please my
Executrs hereafter named to appoint And now for ye settling my temporall
Estate & such goodes Chattells & Debts as it hath pleased God far above my
Deserts to bestow upon me I Do Dispose order & give ye same in manner &
forme following (That is to say) First that after my funerall Expences &
Debts paid wc I owe either of right or in Conscience to any manner of person
or persons whatsoever in Convenient tyme after my Decease by my Execrs
hereafter named I Give & bequeath unto my Eldest Son John Howland ye sum of
five pounds to be paid out of my Estate & my Booke called Mr Tindale's
Workes & also one pair of sheetes & one pr of pillowbeeres & one pr of
Bedblanketts, Item I give unto my son Joseph Howland my Stillyards & also
one pr of sheetes & one pr of pillobeeres Item I give unto my son Jabez
Howland my ffetherbed & boulster yt is in his Custody & also one Rugg & two
Blanketts yt belongeth to ye said Bed & also my great Iron pott & potthookes
Item I give unto my son Isaack Howland my Booke called Willson on ye Romanes
& one pr of sheetes & one paire of pillowbeeres & also my great Brasse
Kettle already in his possession Item I give unto my Son in Law Mr James
Browne my great Bible Item I give & bequeath unto my Daughter Lidia Browne
my best ffeatherbed & Boulster two pillowes & three Blanketts & a green Rugg
& my small Cupboard one pr of AndyIrons & my lesser brasse Kettle & my small
Bible & my booke of mr Robbinsons Workes called Observations Divine &
Morrall & allso my finest pr of Sheetes & my holland pillowbeeres, Item I
give unto my Daughter Elisabeth Dickenson one pr of Sheetes & one pr of
pillowbeeres & one Chest Item I give unto my Daughter Hannah Bosworth one pr
of sheets & one pr of pillowbeeres, Item I give unto my Grand Daughter
Elizabeth Bursley one paire of sheets and one paire of Pillowbeeres Item I
give & bequeath unto my Grandson Nathaniel Howland (the son of Joseph
Howland) and to the heires of his owne Body lawfully begotten for ever all
that my Lott of Land with ye Meadow thereunto adjoyning & belonging lying in
the Township of Duxbury neare Jones River bridge, Item I give unto my
Grandson James Browne One Iron barr and on Iron Trammell now in his
possession, Item I give unto my Grandson Jabez Browne one Chest Item I give
unto my Grand Daughter Dorothy Browne my best Chest & my Warming pan Item I
give unto my Grand Daughter Desire Cushman four Sheep, Item I give &
bequeath my wearing clothes linnen and Woollen and all the rest of my Estate
in mony Debts linnen or of what kind or nature or sort soever it may be unto
my three Daughters Elisabeth Dickenson, Lidia Browne and Hannah Bosworth to
be equally Devided amongst them, Item I make constitute and ordaine my
loving Son in Law James Browne and my loving son Jabez Howland Executors of
this my last Will and Testament, Item it is my Will & Charge to all my
Children that they walke in ye Feare of ye Lord, and in Love and peace
towards each other and endeavour the true performance of this my last Will &
Testament In Witnesse whereof I the said Elizabeth Howland have hereunto
sett my hand & seale this seventeenth Day of December Anno Dm one thousand
six hundred Eighty & six.

The mark of Elisabeth E H Howland

Signed Sealed & Delivd

in ye prsence of us Wittnesses

Hugh Cole

Samuel Vyall

John Browne


Mayflower Web Pages. Caleb Johnson © 1997

“Tucked away in an ancient cemetery steeped in Indian and Pilgrim lore is the grave of Elizabeth Tilley Howland. The widow of John Howland of the Mayflower died in 1687 at the home of her daughter Lydia Brown and was buried in Little Neck Cemetery in the Riverside section of East Providence, R.I. . . The gravestone, dedicated on Aug 27, 1949, reads:
‘Here ended the Pilgrimage of Elizabeth Tilley Howland who died Wednesday 21-31 Dec. 1687 at home of her daughter Lydia & her husband James Brown in Swansea. Elizabeth married Pilgrim John Howland who came with her in the Mayflower Dec. 1620. From them are descended a numerous posterity.’ “425

“If you visit Pilgrim Hall [Plymouth, MA], you will see the cradle in which Susanna White rocked her son Peregrine, cooking utensils and tableware used by the women of the Alden, Bradford, Fuller and Howland families, a beaver hat worn by Constance Hopkins.” 426

“Elizabeth, bapt. 30 Aug. 1607; this date agrees with the death record of 21 Dec. 1687, which states that at the time of death, she was 80 years of age.” 360

“Elizabeth’s paternal grandmother was named Elizaabeth, according to her husband’s will dated, ‘31st jaie of December, 1612’; therefore she was probably named in honor of her grandmother jusst as her sister, Rose, was named in honor of her maternal grandmother. In 1983 I visited the Henlow Church and was given great historical insight about the church and its records, just as a number of Pilgrim John Howland Society member had visited and had the pleasure of seeing Elizabeth’s baptismal record along with the other Tilley family records.” 360

“A 38-foot shallop completed an 11-day journey Thursday that recreated the first trade voyage up the Kennebec River by the Pilgrims in 1628. The Elizabeth Tilley, a replica of the boat used for the original trip, set sail July 28 from Plymouth, Mass., and stopped at 10 ports along the way, including Kennebunkport, Portland and Bath. The trip replicated the voyage of John Howland from Plymouth to Cushnoc, the original name for the Augusta landing point. Shallops were common sailing and rowing boats in 16th- and 17th century Europe. Jay Adams, director of Old Fort Western, which is hosting the shallop’s stay in Augusta, said the Pilgrims made the voyage to help pay off debts they took on to finance their trip from England to America. To do so, Pilgrims like Howland explored trading Plymouth corn for beaver pelts from the Kennebec-area Indians, Adams said. Howland made an exploratory foray up the Kennebec in 1625, and three years later the Pilgrims set up a trading post at Cushnoc that operated off and on into the 1660s.” 379

“The following list of 51 people believed to have been living in December 1621 has been compiled from Eugene A. Stratton and Robert S. Wakefield, ‘A Historical Background for Easly Plymouth Colony Genealogical research, Genealogical Journal 13(winter 1984-5): 145-162:
1. John Alden . .
28. Stephen Hopkins
29. Elizabeth Hopkins
30. Constance Hopkins
31. Giles Hopkins
32. Damaris Hopkins
33. Oceanus Hopkins
34. John Howland . . .
39. Priscilla Mullins . . .
44. Elizabeth Tilley . . .
46. Richard Warren . . . “385

“St. Mary the Virgin Church
St. Mary the Virgin Church is located in Henlow, Bedfordshire, along side of the river Ivel. It is a farming area. The church is thought to date from the 11th or early 12th century. Its impressive and massive tower dates from the late 15th century.
The church belongs to what is referred to as the Church of England. American readers should know that for centuries throughout Great Britain and Europe, church and state were one. No other Christian faiths except that of the king or queen were tolerated. Having decided that they could not in good conscience remain in that faith, finally left England in 1608. This was followed by a dozen years in Holland. There they temporarily found freedom to practice their religious beliefs before making the voyage to New England on the “Mayflower” in 1620.
The parish records of St. Mary’s reveal that a number of Pilgrims were baptized and or married there. Henry Samson was one of them. However, the best known is Elizabeth Tilley, who eventually married Pilgrim John Howland of Fenstanton, Huntingdonshire. She met John on the voyage. Her parents, “Mayflower” passengers John and Joan Hurst (the widow Rogers*) were married there on 20 September 1596. Both John Tilley and Joan Hurst had been baptized there: he on 19 December 1571 and she, a daughter of William and (probably Rose) Hurst of Henlow, on 13 March 1568 (N.S.). In addition to daughter Elizabeth who was baptized there on 30 August 1607, their four other children, Rose (died young), John, Rose, and Robert, were baptized there between 23 Oct 1597 and 25 November 1604. None of the other children accompanied their parents on the “Mayflower.” With the exception of Robert, who married Mary Hawkins and has living descendants in Bedfordshire, the fate of the others is unknown. Joan’s daughter Joan Rogers was also baptized in St. Mary’s on 26 May 1594. Elizabeth and her parents are memorialized by a slate plaque placed there in 1989 by the Pilgrim John Howland Society.”364

“Elizabeth Tilley Howland
The Mayflower brought Edward Tilley with his wife Ann who had lived in Henlow, Bedfordshire, England. Henlow Parish records show a John Tilley, baptized December 19, 1571, married September 20, 1596 to Joan (Hurst) Rogers.
Elizabeth was baptized there August 30, 1607, (In her will written December 17, 1686, Elizabeth Howland says she is seventy-nine years of age which places her birth date about 1607).
While she was the youngest of five children she was the only child to accompany them. She was also the only member of her family to survive the first winter. It is believed that Elizabeth then lived in the Carver household. John Carver died in the spring of 1621 and his wife Katherine died that summer.
There is no record of the date of marriage between John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley. We know that the Division of Cattle in 1627 they were married with two children, Desire and John. If Desire was born in 1624 or 1625 it seems John and Elizabeth were married in March 1623 when Elizabeth was almost 16.
After John’s death, Elizabeth lived in Plymouth with her son Jabez. When the house was sold in 1680, she lived with her daughter Lydia (married to James Brown), in Swansea (now a section of East Providence, Rhode Island). She died there on December 21, 1687.
In 1949 our Society erected a monument to her memory in the Brown lot at Little Neck Cemetery, Riverside, East Providence, Rhode Island. “ 427

“On August 30, 1607 our ancestor Elizabeth Tilley was baptized at St. Mary the Virgin church in Henlow, Bedfordshire, England. Thirteen years later she was among the small band of pilgrims headed for the New World. Within a few months her parents, John and Joan (Hurst) (Rogers) Tilley had died and 13 year old elizabeth was an orphan. Even her aunt and uncle, Edward Tilley and Agnes (Cooper) Tilley had died. She wasn’t alone long for about three years later she married fellow passengers John Howland and they became the parents of 10 children and over 80 grandchildren! St. Mary the Virgin Church is a lovely old church with over 800 years of history. We can verify that the Tilley family has been there for over 500 years.” 231

“The belfry [of St. Mary’s] houses a fine peal of eight bells cast between 1628 and 1979. the three oldest are 1628, 1638, and 1650. While our Elizabeth Tilley never heard them, her siblings, John, Rose, Robert and step-sister surely did. Work on the tower had continued to our time. Among the list of those supporting this effort is the Pilgrim John Howland Society, Elizabeth’s descendants of today. The ground floor is named the Elizabeth Tilley Room. In this room hangs a framed copy of the Pilgrim Charter given by the PJHS. Though John, Joan and Elizabeth Tilley left England 386 years ago, their descendants stay in touch with their ancestral home and its current residents.” 231

“The Howland Spoon was presented to St. Mary’s in 1982. It is a replica of a spoon found at John Howland’s home at Rocky Nook. The next issue of the Quarterly will feature a story on the spoon. Replicas are for sale at Howland House in Plymouth.” 231

“400 Years ago . . .
This is a photo copy from the original book with the baptismal record of Elizabeth Tilley on August 30, 1607. The top says ‘Christenings.’ In the left margin we clearly see 1607. About two-thirds of the way down in the center i428s August. Elizabeh is the last entry for August.
It reads: The 30th Elizabeth Tilley of John Tilly (& of) Joanne his wife.”

“This plaque in memory of the Tilley’s was place at St. Mary’s by the Pilgrim John Howland Society in 1989. it is made of Welsh slate and located in the south aisle. The ground floor room of the tower is called the ‘Elizabeth Tilley Room’ in apprecation for contriubtions by the PJHS for restoration of St. Mary’s over the years.”
The Plaque reads:
‘In memory of
of this parish
married 20 September 1596
and of their daughter
baptized 30 August 1607
wife of
all pilgrims to America
on the Mayflower
in 1620.” 231

“Elizabeth Tilley: A widow for fifteen years
By Robert F. Huber
For 15 years—or almost 20 percent of her life—Elizabeth Tilley Howland was a widow.
She never remarried after her husband and fellow Mayflower passenger died on Feb. 23, 1672/3 and instead played the useful role of grandma while living with her daughter Lydia Brown in Swansea.
Elizabeth was 65 when John died, probably still vivacious and attractive enough to say “yes” to a second husband, but she preferred to remain a widow until she died on Dec. 22, 1687.
The Brown household was ideal for a grandma. When Elizabeth was widowed, the Brown children included James who was 17 years old, Dorothy who was six, and Jabez who was a lively five. Daughter Lydia was born in 1633so she was 39 when her father died.
Elizabeth had barely settled in at the Brown home when King Phillip’s War erupted in 1673. She was forced to flee as Swansea became the storm center of the war. At one point the little community founded only a few years before was almost deserted as residents scurried to safer places such as Barnstable which boasted a population of 3000 compared with 2600 for Plymouth.
Three of Elizabeth’s children—Desire, John and Hope—lived in Barnstable when the Widow Howland moved there. Not far away in Plymouth were three other offspring of the Mayflower couple—Isaac lived in nearby Middleborough and Hannah made her home in Swansea, but Elizabeth had gone to far-away Oyster Bay, Long Island.
There were many other Howlands in Barnstable, including scores of grandchildren who kept Elizabeth busy with her grandmother duties.
Desire Howland was born in Plymouth about 1625, married to John Gorham about 1643 and moved to Barnstable after 1652. Gorham owned a grist mill and tannery there. He was a captain in the militia during King Philip’s War and died in 1676 as a result of war wounds. Five of the Gorham children were born in Barnstable—Jabez, Mercy, Lydia, Hannah and Shubael.
John Howland, second child of John and Elizabeth, was born in 1627 and in 1651 he wed Mary, daughter of Robert Lee of Barnstable. Of their 10 children, the last eight were Barnstable babies. They were Isaac, Hannah, Mercy, Lydia, Experience, Anne, Shubael and John. Both John Howland Jr. and his wife Mary Lee died in the cape town.
Hope Howland, who was born in 1629, married when she was about 17. Her husband was John Chipman who came in 1630 from Barnstaple, Devonshire, England. (Note that the English spelled Barnstaple with a P while the Americans spelled it with a B.)
All of the 11 children probably were born in Barnstable. They were Elizabeth, Hope, Lydia, John (he lived only about 15 months), Hannah, Samuel, Ruth, Bethia, Mercy, John and Desire.
So many grandchildren must have taxed Elizabeth’s memory for there were three Lydias, three Hannahs, three Mercys, three Johns, two Isaacs and two with the name Shubael. How could she keep them all straight?
And just imagine Grandma Howland baking birthday cakes with magic candles for all these grandchildren.
Elizabeth’s son-in-law, James Brown, was one of the most prominent of the early settlers in Swansea. He was a leader in the war against Philip, serving as a major. He also was one of the original members of the Swansea church and was fined five pounds for setting up a Baptist church in Rehoboth.
He tried his best to bring peace to Plymouth Colony and went twice to see the Indian leader but found Philip “very high and not p’suadable to peace.”
Large families usually have their tragedies and the Howlands had theirs. Three of Elizabeth’s children—Desire Gorham, Hope Chipman and Ruth Cushman—died before she did.
The war didn’t last any great length of time and in the end Philip lost his head. The Indian chief was shot by another Indian and his head cut off. The bloody skull was taken in triumph to Plymouth where it was mounted on a pike. It remained there for 20 years, a souvenir of savagery. Birds make it a favorite resting place and finally the Rev. Increase Mather too the jawbone.
With fighting over, Elizabeth returned to Swansea where she kept busy helping with the cooking, sewing, cleaning, gardening—caring for family members.
Everyone dies once in a lifetime and for Elizabeth death came on Dec. 22, 1687. She was buried in Little Neck Cemetery in what is now east Providence, Rhode Island. The monument and grave are maintained by the Pilgrim John Howland Society.
In her final will Elizabeth Tilley Howland gave her possessions to her children and grandchildren and expressed her deep religious faith:
‘And first being penitent & sorry from ye bottom of my heart for all my sins past most humbly desiring forgiveness for ye same I give & commit my soule unto Almighty God my Savior & Redeemer in whome & by ye merits of Jesus Christ I trust & believe assuedly to be saved & to have full remission & forgiveness of all my sins & that my Soule wt my Body at the generall day of resurrection shall rise againe wt Joy & through meritts of Christ’s Death & passion possesse & inherit ye Kingdome of Heaven…’
She concluded:
‘It is my Will & Charge to all my Children that they walke in ye Feare of ye Lord, and in Love and peace towards each other…’ 318

“the bond of administration of John Howland’s estate. This bond is dated 5 March, 1672, and bears the autograph signatures of Elizabeth (Tilley) Howland, who was the executrix of her late husband’s will, and of two of her sons-in-law, John Chipman and John Gorham, who became her sureties. It also bears autograph signatures of Ephraim Morton and William Crow, the two witnesses.
This authograph of Elizabeth (Tilley) Howland is believed to be the only one yet discovered, and we are not aware that it has been noticed by previous writers. it is interesting to note that Elizabeth Howland made ‘her mark’ on this bond by printing her initials, and that, thirteen years later, she signed her will in the same way. [Ante, III: 56.] “ [full text of the bond to be entered.] 306

Tombstone visited and photographed by Barbara Fleming, August, 2001. Photos on file.
Tombstone had been vandalized. The front of the monument read:
“Here Ended the Pilgrimage of
Elizabeth Tilley Howland
who died Wednesday 21-31
Dec 1687 at home of her daughter
LYDIA & Husaband James Brown
in Swansea ~ Elizabeth married
Pilgrim John Howland who came
with her in the Mayflower Dec 1620.
From them are descended a
numerous posterity.
In Elizabeth’s Will the following
inspiring language is used
‘It is my will and charge to all my
Children that they walke in ye Feare
of ye Lord and in Love and Peace
towards each other.’ 77

The back of the monument read:
“This monument erected by
The Pilgrim John Howland Society
General Charles Roscoe Howland
President” 77
Extension of notes notes for Elizabeth Tilley
“Elizabeth Tilley was baptized 30 August 1607 at Henlow, County Bedford, England, the youngest of five chidlren of John Tilley and his wife, Joan (Hurst) Rogers, widow of Thomas Rogers. She died 21 February 1687/8, age 80, at Swansea, Massachusetts, and was buried at Little Neck Cemetery, East Providence, Rhode Island.
She was married, probably about 1623, to John Howland of teh Mayflwoer, at Plymouth, Massachusetts. He was born in 1592 at Fen Stanton, Huntingdonshire (near Newport, County Essex) England, a son of Henry Howland and his wife, Margaret. He died 23 February 1672/3 at Plymouth.” 291

“Prior to the discovery of the Tilley records in the Henlow Parish Records and the publication of the articule, ‘English Ancestry of Seven Mayflower passengers: Tilley, Sampson and Cooper,’ by Robert Leigh Ward in The American Genealogist, October 1976, several suggestions were put forth concerning the mother of Elizabeth Tilley. According to Gloria M. Christiansen, REgistrar, The Pilgrim John Howland Society,
‘. . . John Howland, the educator, was of the opinion she was the daughter of Governor Carver and so stated on a gravestone he erected in 1636 on Burial Hill. After the discovery of Governor Bradford’s History in 1855, we know that John Howland married Elizabeth Tilley, daughter of John Tilley. Since then some persons have thought that ‘our’ John Tilley married Bridget Vander Velde but this was disproved by George Ernest Bowman. Col. Cahrles Edward Banks discovered in London a marriage of a John tilley to Elizabeth Cumyngs, 2 Feb. 1605/6 but nothing further was ever revealed to indicate they had a daughter Elizabeth.’
The Henlow Parish Records have now been accepted by the General Society of Mayflower Descendants as the ancestry of Elizabeth Tilley.” 291

“Elizabeth Tilley was born into that small group of non-conformists known as the Pilgrims, who left England in search of religious freedom. She was an infant in 1608, when the group migrated to Holland. They stayed in Amsterdam about a year and then moved to Lelyden, 22 miles distant, where they spent 11 or 12 years. That is where Elizabeth probably spent her childhood.
The Pilgrims were able to have the spiritual freedom which they had been seeking in Leyden. They were able to find means of livelihood and were living in peace among their Dutch neighbors. But, as their children were growing up, they found that they were being absorbed into the Dutch ways of life. They wanted to maintain their own ways as Englishmen and have their children grow up in their own traditions. For this and other reasons they began to seek a place where they could settle on a permanent basis. After much discussion and planning they decided to go to the coast of North America to settle.” 291

“In 1620, when theMayflower set sail for the New World, Elizabeth was 13 years old. She accompanied her parents, John and Joan (Hurst) Tilley, her father’s brother, Edward and his wife Agnes (Cooper) Tilley, and their cousins, Humility Cooper and Henry Sampson. Elizabeth was one of several young girls on the ship. About her own age were Desire Mintner, daughter of Thomas Mintner of Leyden traveling with the carers, Mary Chilton and Priscilla Mullins, with their parents.” 291

“The hardships of that first winter of the Plymouth Colony are well known. By 5 April 1621, O.S., when the Mayflwoer set sail for the return to England, barely 50 of the original 102 members of the group were left, the others having died of disease and exposure. Elizabeth Tilley was orphaned, along with HUmility Cooper, Priscilla Mullins and Mary Chilton. Katherine carver, wife of Governor Carver and foster mother of Desire Mintner and Mary Brewster, wife of the Ruling Elder, cared for the orphaned young people, including Elizabeth.
About a week after the Mayflower had sailed, Governor Carver was stricken in the fields, and died. His wife survived for only five or six weeks when she died of a broken heart. Desire Mintner, who had become a close friend of Elizabeth, chose to return to England ont he Fortune, which added further to the heart aches of Elizabeth.
However, ti was not long until she and John Howland were married. In 1623, land was allotted to each family in the Plymouth Colony. One of the rules for this allottment was ‘an acre (of land) for every adult who came on the Mayflower, whether he died aboard or in Plymouth, as long as any of his family survived.’ In this allottment, John Howland received 4 acres, 1 for himself, 1 for his wife, Elizaabeth Tilley Howland, and 1 each for her parents who had died. This indicates that Elizabeth and John Howland had married by 1623 when Elizabeth was 16 years old.” 291

“After their marriage, Elizabeth and John lived in Plymouth until about 1629. Their first two children, John, named for his father, and Desire, named for Elizabeth’s childhood friend, Desire Mintner, were born there. . . . A group of eight of the pilgrim Fathers, called Undertakers, agreed to guarantee the paymet of behalf of the rest. John Howland was one of this group. They had set up a trading post on the Kennebec River and it was from their trade there, with the Indians, that they found the resources to pay their debt, although it took over 25 years for them to do it.
John Howland was placed in command of the trading post and served there for about 10 years, starting about 1629. Some of the children of John and Elizabeth were probably born there, since they are not recorded in the Plymouth records.
In the land division which took palce in 1623, John Howland received a large tract of meadows and farmlands along the Jones River near what is now Kingston about 5 miles from Plymouth. In 1638 he purchased land with house, barns and outhouse at Rocky Nook, near Kingston, from John Jenny. Later thans ame year he bought land at Duxbury, but later sold it. Sometime aftr returning from Kennebec, John and Elizabeth set up their home at Rocky Nook.” 291

“John and Elizabeth lived at Rocky Nook for many years while they were raising their family. John served as a member or assistant of the Governor’s Council and was frequently a deputy or representative of the General Court.
Later in life they went to live with their son, Jabez, who had married Bethiah Thatcher, and was living in Plymouth in a house (still standing) which they bought from Jacob Mitchell. It is said of this house:
‘Owned and occupied by Jabez Howland before the death of his Father and Mother, it is fair to presume that its floors have been trodden by those two passengers of the Mayflower and that its walls have listened to their voices.’ (W.T. Davis) “ 291

“After the death of her husband, John, and his burial at Burial Hill in Plymouth, Elizabeth went to Swansea, where she lived with her daughter, Lydia Howland Brown until her death. She was buried at Little Neck Cemetery, East Providence, Rhode Island. Her grave receives perpetual care provided for by the Pilgrim John Howland Society.” 291

“Jim Bullock has sent me the following: . . .
Elizabeth’s death of 22 Dec 1687 appears in Robert Charles Anderson’s ‘The Pilgrim Migration’ under John Howland (p. 282) referencing Swansea VR p. 27. The John Tilley information in this work (p. 463) only give her baptism and marriage dates. Caleb Johnson includes information about Elizabeth’s death on 21 Dec. 1687 and her will in his excellent 2006 ‘The Mayflower and Her Passengers’ on pages 174-175 and 238 (here he gives the death date of 22 dec 1687), the latter also citing the swansea VR. Of coure the General Society of Mayflower Descendants ‘Mayflower Families Through Five Generations Vol 23, Part 1, John Howland’ on pages 1 and 2 also list Elizabeth Tilley Howland’s dates and will abstract and here too the date of death 22 Dec. 1687 appears.
It is my understanding that the memorial stone for Elizabeth placed by the Pilgrim John Howland Society in 1949 in the Little Neck Cemetery, Riverside, RI, reads: ‘Here ended the Pilgrimage of ELIZABETH TILLEY HOWLAND who died Wednesday 21-31 Dec. 1687 at home of her daughter LYDIA & husband JAMES BROWN In Swanzea. ELIZABETH married Pilgrim JOHN HOWLAND who came with her in the Mayflower Dec. 1620. From them descended a numerous posterity. In ELIZABETH’s Will the following inspiring language is used ‘It is my will and charge to all my Children that they walke in ye Feare of ye Lord, and in Love and Peace towards each other.’
It would appear that Elizabeth Tilley Howland definitely died in Dec. 1687 but, based on the above, whether is was on the 21st or 22nd is up in the air short of seeing the original Swansea Vital Record entry.” 429

“Elizabeth Tilley. She was born in 1606, the daughter of silkworker John and Elizabeth (Comyngs) Tilley, from London. She had come on the Mayflower with her parents, both of whom died the first winter, as did her uncle, Edward Tilley, leaving her an orphan. . . After his [John Howland’s] death Elizabeth removed to live with her daughter, Lydia Brown, at Swanzey, Rhode Island (Howland - Massachusetts, per Hunter), where she died December 22, 1687, also aged 80.” 285

“Elizabeth passed the closing days of her life with her daughter Lydia Brown in Swanzey, Rhode Island, where she died, according to the Swanzey records, ‘December 22, 1687, aged 80 years.’ “ 278

“Elizabeth (Tilley) Howland, wo was born in England in 1607, and died December 21, 1687, also came to America on the ‘Mayflower’ with her parents, who both died during the hard winter of 1621. Her father, John tilley, was the sixteenth signer of the ‘Mayflower Compact’. “ 365

“Also on the Mayflower were Edward Tilley’s brother and sister-in-law, John and Joan Tilley and their teen-age daughter Elizabeth. . . Elizabeth Tilley traveled not only with her father John and mother Joan Tilley, but also with her uncle and aunt, Edward and Ann Tilley who were caring for two of Elizabeth’s cousins, infant Humility Cooper and 16-year old Henry Sampson.” ” 413

“Six youngsters who had been orphaned that first winter and left without parents survived. Elizabeth Tilley, 13, cousin to Humility Cooper and Henry Sampson, survived although her parents did not.” 413

“Like Priscilla, Elizabeth Tilley was a teenage Mayflower girl who married a slightly older Mayflower man. Elizabeth (age 13 in 1620) met her future husband, John Howland (perhaps 21), on the Mayflower voyage. They had married by about 1624, when Elizabeth was 17 and John was 25. By 1627, the Howlands had two children: Desire, age 3, and young John, a newborn. Like the Aldens, the Howlands wound also eventually have 10 children. John died in 1672; Elizabeth lived until 1686 and spent her later years in Swansea, where her daughter Desire had moved.” 413

“It appear that Priscilla Mullins, and Dorothy, John Carver’s maidservant, were the oldest of the girls who survived the first winter, the others being Desire Minter, 14-17; Constance Hopkins, about 14; Mary Chilton, about 13; Elizabeth Tilley, about 13; Remember Allerton, 5-6; Mary Allerton, 3-4; Damaris Hopkins, about 2; and Humilty Cooper, about 1. With only five grown women surviving the first winter and four surviving to the First Thanksgiving, the children of the Mayflower, boys and girls who were accustomed to doing hard work while in Leiden, were of great assistance to the community, possibly under the direction of Priscilla, Dorothy, and the older girls.” 430

“John Howland married, Elizabeth Tilley, circa 1624, in Plymouth. Born, 1607, in Henlow, Huntingdonshire, England, the daughter of John Tilley and Joan Hurst, Elizabeth was baptized, 30 August 1607, in Henlow. She died, 21 December 1687, in Swansea, Massachusetts. Burial: December 1687(?), in Little Neck Cemetery, East Providence, Rhode Island. Probate of Estate: 10 January 1687/8, in Bristol County, Massachusetts; Will: December. 17, 1686. Elizabeth Tilley together with her parents John and Joan (Hurst) Tilley also sailed as passengers on the Mayflower. Her parents were among te group of pilgrims who were victims of ‘the sickness’ and did not survive the first winter in the new colony.”287

Full text of his [John Howland’s] will and inventory to be entered.
“The Last Will and Testament of mr John howland of Plymouth Late deceased, exhibited tot he Court held att Plymouth the fift Day of March Anno Dom 1672 on the oathes of mr Samuell ffuller and mr William Crow as followth . . .
Item I Will and bequeath unto my Deare and loveing wife Elizabeth howland athe use and benifitt of my now Dwelling house in Rockey nooke in the Township of Plymouth aforsaid, with the outhousing lands, That is uplands uplands and meddow lands and all appurtenances adn privilidges threunto belonging in the Towne of Plymouth and all other Lands houseing and meddowes that I have in the said Towne of Plymouth excepting what meddow and upland I have before given To my sonnes Jabez and Isacke howland During her naturall life to Injoy make use of ad Improve for her benifitt and Comfort. . . .
Item I giue and bequeath unto my Daughter Desire Gorum twenty shillings
Item I giue and bequeath to my Daugher hope Chipman twenty shillings . . .
Item my will is That these legacyes Given to my Daughters be payed by my exeequitrix in such species as shee thinketh meet;
Item I will and bequeath unto my loveing wife Elizabeth howland, my Debts and legacyes being first payed, my whole estate: viz: lands houses goods Chattles; or any thingeelse that belongeth or apperaineth unto mee, undisposed of be it either in Plymouth Duxburrow or Middlbery or any other place whatsoever; I Doe freely and absolutely give and bequeath it all to my Deare and loveing wife Elizabeth howland whome I Doe by these prsents, make ordaine and Constitue to be the sole exequitrix of this my Las will and Testament ot see the same truely and faithfully prfrmed according to the tenour theror; In witness wherof I the said John howland senir have heerunto sett my hand and seale the aforsaid twenty ninth Day of May, one thousand six hundred seaventy and two 1672 . . . “ 287

Full text of her will to be entered. 287

“The documented names of people who can be considered members of the Leiden church are listed below . . .
Tilley, Elizabeth
Tilley, John . . . “ 415
Last Modified 11 Nov 2011Created 24 Dec 2013 using Reunion for Macintosh