What You Can Find in the Records
Robert Charles Anderson’s The Great Migration Begins includes more than 1,100 sketches of immigrants or immigrant families that arrived in New England between 1620 and 1633. Each sketch contains information on the immigrant's migration dates and patterns, various biographical matters (such as occupation, church membership, education, offices, and land holdings), and genealogical details (birth, death, marriages, children, and other associations by blood or marriage), along with detailed comments, discussion, and bibliographic information on the family.
The Great Migration Begins is the first phase of the Great Migration Study Project, which aims to investigate all immigrants to New England from 1620 through 1640. The project’s goal is to summarize all available research and provide a solid platform that will allow future researchers to assess the status of research on a given family without having to repeat work already done or waste large amounts of time searching the genealogical literature. To this end, sketches in the Great Migration first review the existing secondary literature, looking especially for conflicting or missing data. Then the primary sources are examined to confirm what has already been written about the family, fill in gaps, or resolve conflicting interpretations and correct errors. In many instances, of course, gaps and discrepancies will remain, and the sketch will then describe the problem and perhaps suggest a future course of research. In the end, the Great Migration sketches should permit future researchers to use their time more efficiently and serve as a springboard for new discoveries.
The text of the sketches provides abbreviated citations to the primary and secondary sources used to create the sketches. Images through volume 6 are available on the site, but only volumes 1-5 are indexed at this time. An index for volume 6 is forthcoming.