Robert Carver

Robert CARVER (1594 – 1680)  was probably not Alex’s 12th Great Grandfather;  one of 8,192 in this generation of the Miner line.  See note from Bev Anderson below.   The town of Carver, Massachusetts, that is called the cranberry capitol of the world is named for Robert’s uncle John  Carver, the first governor of Plymouth Colony.

Carver, Mass Cranberry Bogs

Robert Carver was born in 1594 in Boston, Lincolnshire, England. . His parents were Isaac CARVER and Catherine [__?__]. He married Christian TURNER on 4 Aug 1617 in Lydiard District, Wiltshire, England.  He was the cousin of  John Carver, governor of the Mayflower and  the first governor of Plymouth Colony.  Robert came to the Plymouth colony later, and settled at Marshfield before 1638 having been granted 20 acres of land at Greene’s Harbor.  Robert died in Apr 1680 in Boston when he was 86 yrs old and is buried in Marshfield Mass.

Robert and Christian Carver – Founders Monument Marshfield, Mass

Christian Turner was born 1596 in England. Christian died 23 Jul 1658 in Marshfield, Plymouth Colony.

Children of   Robert and Christian:

Name Born Married Departed
1. Elizabeth CARVER? c. 1632
2 Oct 1649
c. 1660
Enfield, CT
2. John Carver 23 Jun 1637
Marshfield, Plymouth Colony
Millicent Ford
4 Nov 1658
23 Jun 1679

John Carver, first governor of Plymouth Colony, was “sonne of James Carver, Lincolnshire, yeoman” and it has been the commonly accepted tradition that Robert Carver, the emigrant, was his brother, which tradition was supposed to have been established as fact by the historian of Marshfield, Mass., who received information from a Carver descendant whose grandfather had lived 21 years with his grandfather Robert, the emigrant. But it is now known that Robert was a son of Isaac, a brother of Governor Carver and consequently the Governor’s nephew.”

The Carver Family of New England, Clifford Nickels Carver, p.23:

“In Leyden the Carvers [John & Catherine] lived first on Widdleberg, and, after 1617, on Middelgracet. And here it appears that the nephew Robert Carver, joined John Carver, for in one of the Leyden records, Robert Carver is referred to as the grandson of Katharine Carver (the wife of James Carver and mother of Isaac and John).

The town of Carver, Plymouth, Mass was named for Robert’s uncle John, first Governor of Plymouth Colony.

Robert was a proprietor in Marshfield, Mass. 3 Sep 1638, and his name is on the list of those able to bear arms in 1643. He was admitted a freeman 7 Jun 1648; was a juryman and held verious town offices. He had a son John. (New England Families & Memorial:Third Series, Vol. IV)

From The Carver Family of New England, Robert Carver of Marshfield & His Descendants, p. 23:

It appears that in middle life, John Carver … in Leyden, the Carver’s lived first on Widdlebert, and after 1617 on Middlegracet. And here it appears that the nephew, Robert Carver, joined John Carver, for in one of the Leyden records, Robert Carver is referred to as the grandson of Katharine Carver (the wife of James Carver and mother of Isaac & John).

In “The Genealogical & Family History of the State of Maine, (comp. by Little) the statement is made that Isaac Carver, father of Robert and brother of John died in Leyden, which leads to believe that he too had followed his brother there.

Robert lived in Duxbury for a while, but moved back to Marshfield. He served on the grand jury in 1643. Robert made an arrangement with Millicent Ford Carver (surviving wife of son John) to live with her after John’s death, with half the estate going to John & Millicent’s oldest son, William, during Robert’s lifetime, and the other half going to William after the death of Millicent.

No good record has been found of his birth or parentage beyond the records listed above.  It is thought that he was in Leyden, Holland before the Pilgrims left there, but no proof of his residence has been found.        It is not known when Robert and Christian Carver came to America.  Their names have not been located on any ships passenger lists.  There was a large immigration in 1635 and this is when Robert might have come over.


3 Sep 1638 – Robert Carver definitely appears in the Plymouth Colony  when at a Court of Assistants held at New Plymouth “Robert Carver is granted 20 acres of land lying on the northwest side Greenes Harbor River and a garden place upon Stoney River.”  This land was in the town of Dusbury, which was founded in 1637.  Duxbury was the first town to be founded in Plymouth Colony after New Plymouth.

8 Oct 1639 – The records of the Court of Assistants show “Capt. Miles Standish, Mr. Alden, and Mr. Ed Winslow are appointed to lay forth the land and meadow granted to Job Cole and also to land granted to Francis Godfrey and Robert Carver.”

10 Sep 1641 – Robert was living in Duxbury when Edmund HAWES of Duxburrow agreed to exchange 10 acres of upland lying across Green River for 2,000 feet of sawn boards that sawyer Robert was to deliver.

“The Xth of September 1641. Memorand. That Edmond Hawes of Duxborrow doth acknowledge that for and in consideration of the sum of two thousand foote of Sawne boards to be delived and payed him by Robert Carver all those his Ten acres of upland lyinge crosse Green’s Harbor payth with all his labors in & aboute the same with all and singueler the apprtencs thereunto belonging and all his Right Title an interest of and into the said prmisss. To have and to hold the said Tenn acres of upland & wth all and singuler the apprtenences thereunto belonging unto the said Robte Carver his heirs and assignes for ever and to the onely per use and behoofe of him the said Robert Carver his heires and assignes forever.”

Soon after this Robert moved to Marshfield when on 7 Mar 1643 he was appointed grand juryman.  Marshfield was organized at Greens Harbor as a town in 1640.

1643 –  Robert’s name appears as non-commissioned officer on a list of males in Marshfield between the ages of 16-60 who were able to bear arms.

Aug 1645 – At Marshfield’s town meeting the following entry appears in the town minutes: “On motion being made for one to teach school, we, whose names are underwritten, are willing to pay yearly, besides paying for our children we shall send, viz: Edward Winslow 20 shilling, Thomas BOURNE 10 shilling, John Bourne 10 shilling, Robert Carver 10 shilling, Thomas Chillingsworth 10 shilling. This was the first recorded movement towards a public school in New England.

7 Jun 1648 – Robert Carver was made a Freeman of Plymouth Colony.  Being a Freeman gave Robert the right to vote and to hold office.

7 Jun 1651 – Robert acquired more land when he and John Russell of Marshfield, planter, bought from Thomas Chillingsworth about 40 acres of land in Marshfield for £15, 15 shilling to be paid in corn and cattle.

1653 – Robert was chosen a surveyor of highways.  He often served on juries.

27 Jun 1679 – Robert left no will, but after the death of John, his only known son, he made an agreement with John’s widow Millicent.   Robert was to live with her the remainder of his life.  In return her children were to have improvements of his whole estate until her eldest son, William, became 21.  At age 21 William received half of the estate.  At his mother’s death he was to receive the other half.  Millicent remarried a couple of years later. This land still belonged to Carvers as late as 1909.


1. Elizabeth CARVER? (See William RANDALL‘s page)

2. John Carver

John’s wife Millicent Ford was born between 1636-38, Duxbury, Plymouth, Mass. Her parents were Deacon William Ford and Anna (Hannah) Eames.  William Ford came to Plymouth in the Fortune in 1621.  After John died, she married 9 Mar 1681 in Marshfield, Mass to Thomas Drake.  Millicent died before 4 May 1696, Massachusetts.

Thomas Drake was born 13 Sep 1635 in Colyton, Devon, England. His parents were William Drake and Margaret Westover. He first married Jane Holbrook, daughter of Thomas HOLBROOK on 9 Mar 1655 Weymouth, Mass.  On 14 Dec. 1663 the town of Weymouth granted him six acres in the First Division and eighteen acres in the Second Division. (Weymouth Land Grants, 283.)    Elizabeth Drake, who married in Boston, 8 Jun 1654 to Ezekiel Hamlin, and Joane, the wife of Thomas Randall of Weymouth, were his sisters. Thomas died Weymouth MA 23 Sep 1692, estate settled in 1692.


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16 Responses to Robert Carver

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  6. Bev Anderson says:

    Robert Carver and his wife Christian [surname unknown] had only one child: John Carver, born ca. 1637. Elizabeth Carver is NOT a daughter of Robert and Christian. See Clifford Nickels Carver’s book.

    The Elizabeth Carver you have listed has other parents, possibly Richard Carver, whose Carver surname from elsewhere in England died with him since he had daughters, no sons. IF Elizabeth Carver is your ancestor, you need to be looking for another Carver family from colonial New England, not Robert Carver, nephew of Gov. John Carver of the Mayflower. There is more than one Carver family since it’s a surname with occupation origins.

    The Robert Carver and Christian Turner marriage is for a couple in Wiltshire (source seems to be a “genealogist” who was hired by a Thomas Houck and she got the wrong Carver with the same name and she didn’t check out the math, nor, apparently, did she follow this couple to see if they left Wiltshire or not)…, and in terms of 17th century England, Wiltshire is a LONG ways from Lincolnshire or Doncaster, Yorkshire where John and Isaac were born (not all that far from where William Bradford was born and raised in Austerfield). While not impossible, it’s highly doubtful and very unlikely that there would be a twenty-year gap between the marriage date of Robert and Christian [surname unknown] and the birth of John, ONLY child of Robert and Christian.

    You’ve listed my web site as one of your sources. Please see my note under Christian’s name for further reference, and correct your records accordingly…, or remove my web site as your source. I have been doing genealogy research for 50 years, and I attempt to be as correct as possible regarding my records, including getting documents, and I do not wish to have my name associated with other information that I believe, or know, to be incorrect.

    Thank you.
    Bev Anderson

  7. Bev. My name is Barbara Stewart,new to research on family, but according to LDS, I am a direct descendant of your Robert Carver and his wife, Christian Turner ( tenth great grandparents). I realize that LDS makes errors as well. My Carver connection is via my paternal great great grandmother, Cynthia Waterman Carver, born 1843 in Vinalhaven, Maine, married to John Lane McMullin. Is Clifford’s book easy to find?

    • Bev Anderson says:

      Barbara: I spent a very long time composing a comment to you yesterday, before I sent the short comment that is now online.  Did you get it?  Has it been withheld because it needs moderating before posting?  Or has it been hung up in a spam filter because it was too long?  I see it is not online. Best Wishes,Bev Anderson

      From: Miner Descent To: Sent: Monday, June 20, 2016 11:35 AM Subject: [New comment] Robert Carver #yiv0189332443 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv0189332443 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv0189332443 a.yiv0189332443primaryactionlink:link, #yiv0189332443 a.yiv0189332443primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv0189332443 a.yiv0189332443primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv0189332443 a.yiv0189332443primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv0189332443 Barbara Batson Stewart commented: “Bev. My name is Barbara Stewart,new to research on family, but according to LDS, I am a direct descendant of your Robert Carver and his wife, Christian Turner ( tenth great grandparents). I realize that LDS makes errors as well. My Carver connection is vi” | |

      • markeminer says:

        Hi Bev,

        Yes, I have to approve each comment before they are visible here. The volume automated spam comments is ten times greater than real comments. Everything should be visible now.



      • Bev Anderson says:

        Thank you very much, Mark, for putting the info online for Barbara. I’m sorry my reply was so long, but there is quite a great deal to impart on the family, and a great many more books about colonial New England that mention Robert Carver and his descendants that I didn’t even include. Again, thank you.Bev

        From: Miner Descent To: Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2016 1:39 PM Subject: [New comment] Robert Carver #yiv3207524530 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv3207524530 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv3207524530 a.yiv3207524530primaryactionlink:link, #yiv3207524530 a.yiv3207524530primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv3207524530 a.yiv3207524530primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv3207524530 a.yiv3207524530primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv3207524530 markeminer commented: “Hi Bev,Yes, I have to approve each comment before they are visible here. The volume automated spam comments is ten times greater than real comments. Everything should be visible now.Cheers!Mark” | |

  8. Bev Anderson says:

    Hello Barbara –

    The towns of Carver, North Carver, and South Carver are not where Robert Carver and most of the immediate descendants ever lived. Marshfield is located in the upper right corner of Plymouth County on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean; it is a custom of New England to say Town of Marshfield (or any other location, e.g. Carver Township in which the towns of Carver, North Carver, and South Carver are located), whereas people in other parts of the US would say Marshfield Township. While it is true the towns (& that township known as Town of Carver) were named for John Carver, the colonial Carvers never lived there.,_Massachusetts,_Massachusetts,_Massachusetts

    You are wise to know that LDS web site has incorrect records…, and since many people are copiers rather than researchers who look for original documents, or at least accurate published genealogies, the LDS errors just keep being repeated endlessly; it’s very frustrating. Unless you can find images on the FamilySearch web site, none of the genealogies listed should be taken for accurate information. That was one of the first things I found out shortly after I got my first computer, altho I’d been doing genealogy research for a long time. The internet is the best thing that could have ever happened to genealogy research…, but only when the images are available for verifying facts.

    IMAGES of Massachusetts, Town Clerk, Vital and Town Records, 1626-2001 are on the LDS site – for now; sometimes they have time limits on the images and links back to the image are no longer valid; I suggest downloading what you you need immediately when you find them, make sure to use the Source line for credit so you know where you got it – I copy-paste the Source data on a blank border somewhere with Paint program).

    Massachusetts Land Records, 1620-1986
    Land and property records from the Massachusetts Land Office and county courthouses. Records include land grants, patents, deeds, and mortgages. This collection includes all counties in Massachusetts.

    Massachusetts, Plymouth County, Probate Records, 1633-1967
    Probate estate files of Plymouth County from two different sources: the Secretary of the Commonwealth and the archive of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts.

    I own a book entitled Vital Records of Vinalhaven, Knox County, Maine Prior to 1892 Maine, Transcribed by Elizbeth M. Mosher. Picton Press, Rockport, Maine, 1994. I bought it through Picton Press, Rockland, Maine, a few years ago (I don’t know why the title page has Rockport instead of Rockland). Picton Press is no longer in business since the death of the owner:
    This is a huge loss to genealogists. There aren’t that many places that specialize in prints, reprints or transcribed records, and Picton could be relied upon for correctness in their published works.

    On p. 157, Vinalhaven – Book 3, Marriages
    A list of Persons Joined in Marriage by James Roberts
    June 29th John L. Mullin and Cinthia W. Carver
    [Original spelling from the records; Mosher transcribes exactly what she sees. Do you have any documented evidence that the W. for Cynthia’s middle initial stood for Waterman? Or was she born Waterman and adopted by a Carver family? There are roughly 30 Waterman/Watterman names in the Vinalhaven Records index, none of which is Cynthia.]
    On p. 239, Vinalhaven Vital Records, Births, Depositions, Deaths
    Family Name Name of Child Date of Birth Names of Parents Page 1
    Mullen Frank Victor Dec. 31, 1873 John L. Mullen Cynthia W. Carver
    Vinalhaven – Book 6
    Marriage Intentions
    Recorded by F. S. Walls, Dep. Town Clerk & Town Clerk
    1885 Intentions of Marriage
    Aug. 1 Pub.. John L. Mullin and Miss Emma F. Douglass both of Vinal Haven
    F. S. Walls, Town Clerk
    [Apparently Cynthia was dead by then? I can’t find her in the death records.]
    Vinalhaven – Book 6
    Recorded by F. S. Walls, Town Clerk
    Aug. 6 … Mr. John L. Mullin of Vinal Haven and Miss Emma F. Douglass of Vinal Haven … mar… by me at Vinal Haven this 6th day of August 1885
    James Roberts, J. P.

    I also have a paperback copy of the reprint of the centennial book entitled A Brief Historical Sketch of the Town of Vinalhaven. I see has the book available for a free download (it does not have an index; the war talked about in the reprint of the centennial book is the Civil War): has a HUGE number of early New England historical and genealogy books available (often in digital colored images) for a free download since so many were written so long ago the copyright ran out a long time ago. Google Books has many of the same, usually in microfilm, but Google searches usually now get you to the page of a reprinted book for a cost, so I don’t use them all that much any longer. has free downloads for everything.

    I’ve only found one source for images of Clifford Nichols Carver’s book The Carver Family of New England: Robert Carver of Marshfield and his Descendants (altho it’s probably available via; I don’t know – the copyright has expired so wherever it is, it should be a free download; I keep trying to find it on, but so far it’s not there):;view=1up;seq=5
    The name Cynthia W. Carver is not listed in the index, nor is John L. Mullin.
    There seems to be a way to download the book (with a log-in partner, whatever that means), or one can download a page. [If all else fails, and you have the patience, I suppose one could do a screen shot of each page?]

    I do have the Carver book in pdf format sent to me many years ago in six sections by a now-dead cousin who, I think, downloaded it from (?not sure where he got it). Of course, like Ancestry, it’s a fee-based web site.

    Marshfield / Plymouth County records are/were available in transcribed and image formats on (I’m no longer a member of Ancestry). If Cynthia was born anywhere before living on Vinalhaven, it was probably in Massachusetts. IIRC, Maine did not become a separate state from Massachusetts until ca 1820. Or, possibly, New Brunswick, Canada; that’s where a lot of Loyalists went, particularly after the publication of the Massachusetts Banishment Act of 1778.

    A few downloadable books in which you might be interested:

    A compendious history of New England, from the discovery by Europeans to the first General Congress of the Anglo-American colonies; Published 1884. by Palfrey, John Gorham, 1796-1881

    Records of the colony of New Plymouth, in New England [Deeds &c] by New Plymouth Colony; Massachusetts. General Court; Published 1855. Shurtleff, Nathaniel Bradstreet, 1810-1874, ed; Pulsifer, David, 1802-1894, ed

    This comes with a lot of caveats because some info has been proven incorrect:
    The pioneers of Massachusetts, a descriptive list, drawn from records of the colonies, towns and churches and other contemporaneous documents. Published 1900 by Pope, Charles Henry, 1841-1918

    There are more Plymouth and early colonial New England records; a simple search should give you lots of options.

    If I can help you further, let me know.

    Best Wishes,
    Bev Anderson

  9. Bev Anderson says:

    Hi Barbara –
    Please be aware that Robert Carver died in Marshfield, Plymouth County, Massachusetts…, NOT Boston, as was listed above.

    There was another Robert Carver in colonial MA, but he had two daughters, so that lineage (NOT connected to my Robert Carver line) daughtered out and that particular Carver name did not get passed on to future generations.

    Best Wishes,

  10. Barbara Stewart says:

    Thank you so very much for such a huge collection of sources! Feeling a bit overwhelmed, hoping that I can get it sorted out. LDS has Cynthia Carver and John L Mullin ( McMullin) listed as parents of my great grandfather, Frank Victor Mullen. Have never seen anything about Emma Douglas. One thought does occur and that is perhaps Cynthia died in childbirth and Johnremarried. I will be looking. Many thanks to you for your generous time and thoughtfulness to this amateur. It is so very appreciated!

  11. Peggy Reynolds Oliver says:

    Hello, I am researching the Robinson family of Warren and Cushing Maine. The progenitor, Moses Robinson, came to the area with a shipload of Scotch-Irish, sometime early to mid 18th century. Moses’ son, John Robinson, b. abt. 1733, married a Sarah Carver, according to Cyrus Eaton’s books,( “Annals of Warren”, and also “History of Thomaston, Rockland, and South Thomaston”)
    Sarah was a descendant of Governor Carver of the Plymouth colony. I have seen most of the information that makes this unlikely. My question to you is, “Have you seen any information that might tie Sarah to Robert Carver, the early Plymouth resident.? I read that he was probably a nephew of the Governor. A certain Robert Carver was in coastal Maine around the Indian wars and had petitioned for troops in a letter to General Waldo. Hoping to hear from you.
    Margaret Oliver

    • Bev Anderson says:

      Carver, Clifford Nickels. The Carver Family of New England: Robert Carver of Marshfield and his Descendants. Privately Printed, 1935. [The book is online at two sites; I don’t understand the library loan policy, so try Hathi Trust. I suspect the author’s descendants have renewed his copyright? I don’t know.];view=1up;seq=1

      There are NO descendants of Gov. John Carver and his wife, Catherine White of the Mayflower. There are allegedly one or two children who were born to the couple, but one or both were infant deaths. The Sarah Carver you are looking for did NOT descend from Gov. John Carver of the Mayflower, nor did anyone else who carries the surname Carver.

      Robert Carver’s father was Isaac Carver, brother of Gov. John Carver; both were born in Doncaster, Yorkshire, England. Isaac, like John, went to Leiden, Holland as a religious Separatist, and apparently died there. Robert, born in Doncaster, Yorkshire, England was the nephew of Gov. John Carver of the Mayflower.

      To confuse the issue of names, Robert and his wife, Christian (surname unknown), named their son and only child John, and he and his wife, Millicent Ford, went on to have ten children (one of whom was named John, and the name John Carver is repeated in many generations among the descendants of Robert Carver).

      There was no connection by marriage between any descendants of Robert Carver and any later Robinsons in the 1600s that I am aware of. There was a John Robinson from England who was a Separatist like John and Isaac Carver of Doncaster, and one of the leaders of the group in Leiden, but except for business dealings, there doesn’t seem to have been any marriage relationships with that Robinson family and any of Robert Carver’s descendants (and, of course, John had no descendants who lived to adulthood).

      On the other hand, you’re looking for a much later group of Scots-Irish Robinsons, not the John Robinson of England known to John and/or Isaac Robinson, so if there were any relationships between your Robinsons and any Carvers who descend from Robert, I am not aware of them.

      I did a search for a “Sarah Carver” in the Hathi Trust site for the Carver genealogy book, and can’t see any connection to your Robinsons. (Use the quotation marks or you will get many hits for Sarah and Carver.”)

      Good Luck,
      Bev Anderson

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