The Mayflower Clark Myth

Richard Clarke, Mayflower Passenger List

Birth: Unknown.

Marriage: Unknown.

Death: Sometime the first winter.

Children: Unknown.

Biographical Summary:  Richard Clarke is one of the Mayflower passengers for whom almost nothing is known. His name is not known to have occurred in the records of Leiden, so he was probably one of the passengers who joined the voyage from England. The only record of his existence is William Bradford's naming him as a passenger, and saying simply that he died the first winter and left no descendants at Plymouth. The Clarke surname is far too common to do any serious research, so there is little hope of ever discovering or learning more about this passenger.


The Mayflower's Crew:  The Mayflower likely carried a crew of about 25 or 30. Unfortunately there was no list of the names of the crewmembers recorded, so only a few names are actually known.

Mayflower MASTER'S MATE: John Clark

John Clark was perhaps the John Clark baptized on 26 March 1575 in Rotherhithe, Surrey, England. He first went to Jamestown, Virginia in March 1610 as a ship's pilot. There, at Point Comfort, he was captured by the Spanish in June 1611. He was taken captive to Havana, Cuba, where he was interrogated, and then sent to Seville, Spain, and then on to Madrid in 1613. He was held as a prisoner until he was exchanged for a Spanish prisoner held by the English in 1616. He immediately went back to his occupation as a ship's pilot, and took a shipment of cattle to Jamestown, Virginia in 1619 under some-time pirate Thomas Jones. In 1620, he was hired to be the master's mate and pilot of the Mayflower, on its intended voyage to Northern Virginia. While the Pilgrims were exploring Cape Cod and Plymouth Harbor, the shallop was caught in a storm and Clark brought them safely ashore at an Island, which is to this day known as Clark's Island. After returning, John Clark decided to settle in Virginia himself. He went to Jamestown in 1623 on the ship Providence, with the intention of settling there, but died not too long after his arrival.


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All records on this Clark web site are Copyright©2004, Dr. Frank Oliver Clark. These documents may be freely used for private purposes, and included in your own genealogy.  However, these documents are copyrighted and may not be sold, nor given to anyone who may attempt to derive profit from same. Please send any errors, corrections, conjectures, updates, etc. to Dr. Frank O. Clark.