Cooke Family Information


Abt 1582, England
MARRIED: 4 Jul 1603, Leyden, Holland
DIED: 7 Apr 1663, Plymouth, Plymouth Cty, MA
BURIED: Plymouth, MA

SPOUSE: Hester Mayhieu, b abt 1580, Canterbury?, England

FATHER: Unknown

MOTHER: Unknown

PERSONAL DATA: One of the original Pilgrim settlers of Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620 was Francis Cooke, who arrived with his 12 year old son John on that famous voyage of the Mayflower. He and his son both survived that terrible first winter, when half the passengers died. His wife and his three other children joined him in the summer of 1623. They had three more children in Plymouth for a total of seven children, two boys and five girls.

No record has yet been found for Francis' baptism (abt 1582) but presumably it occurred in England, most likely East Anglia, but possibly Lincolnshire, from where the main body of the Pilgrims came. The first record of Francis was in 1603 when he declared his intent to marry Hester Mahieu in Leyden [Leiden], Holland. He was described as a woolcomber, age about 20.

Many of the married men on the Mayflower in 1620 left their wives and younger children in England. It took three years to arrange transport to Plimouth [Plymouth] for many of the wives and children left behind but finally Hester Cooke arrived on the Anne with her children as well as Elizabeth Warren, wife of Richard, with their five daughters. Richard was a Stranger recruited in London in 1620, came over on the Mayflower, and signed the Compact along with Francis. Francis' first son John (bap Leyden early in 1607) married Sarah Warren (b 1614 probably England) at Plymouth 28 March 1634. He was about 27 and she 20 years old.

John and Sarah Cooke had five daughters all born in Plymouth; Sarah (b abt 1635), Elizabeth (b abt 1641), Hester/Esther (b 16 Aug 1650), Mary (b abt 1652), and Mercy (b 25 July probably 1657). The eldest daughter, Sarah, married Arthur Hathaway 20 Nov 1652 in Plymouth and they had seven children.

Arthur and Sarah Hathaway's seven children were born as follows, the first two in Plymouth, the latter five in Dartmouth. The birth dates of most are uncertain; John (b 17 Sep 1653), Sarah (b 28 Feb 1655/6), Hannah (b abt 1660), Lydia (b abt 1662), Mary (b abt 1664), Thomas (b abt 1669), and Jonathan (b 1672). Their daughter Mary married Samuel Hammond about 1682, probably in Dartmouth, and more on this line can be found under Hammond in this website.

1. See the author's book Fathers and Mothers, 328pp, 2002, Ch 14 for details and references about Francis and John Cook, and the Hathaways. The book is available from the author at 6695 Terry Court, Arvada, CO 80007 and email: [email protected]
2. Nearly all of the vital information on Francis is from Ralph Wood, 1996, Francis Cook of the Mayflower, the First Five Generations, a marvelous book on the genealogy of Francis, his wife, and his descendants through five generations. It notes that the third child lived less than a year in Leyden; and that third daughter Hester was born either in 1621 in Leyden, after Francis sailed to Plymouth, or in 1624 after his wife arrived from England.
3. The best single book about Pilgrim origins, the Babworth-Scrooby group, life in Holland, Mayflower voyage and the early years in MA is by George Willison, 1945, Saints and Strangers.
4. See the remarkable diary by William Bradford, Of Plymouth Plantation, covering the years 1620-1647 edited by Samuel Morison. Bradford was elected governor of the Plantation in 1621 and thereafter until 1656, except for five years, and was the principal leader of the Plantation. The book begins with the Scrooby information, describes the life of the group in Holland, and then in great detail, the first years of settlement.
5. See Clinton Sellew, "John Cooke of Dartmouth, Mass.," The Mayflower Quarterly, (May 1971): 68 for a brief accurate summary of this transaction and his later activities in Dartmouth; and for a more complete and speculative account see Robert Foster, "John Cooke: First Settler of Fairhaven," Pilgrim Heritage Seminar, 3 May 1973.
6. See Elizabeth Versailles, ed, 1970, Hathaways of America, an excellent genealogy of the Hathaway family.

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