Isaac Allerton (1586-1658)

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Isaac Allerton, Sr. was born 1586 in London, Middlesex, England, United Kingdom to Edward Allerton (1555-1589) and Rose Davis (1556-1596) and died 12 February 1659 in New Haven, New Haven County, Connecticut, United States of unspecified causes. He married Mary Norris (1588-1621) 4 November 1611 in Leiden, South Holland, Netherlands. He married Fear Brewster (1606-1634) 22 May 1626 in Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts. He married Joanna Swinnerton (c1610-) 1642 in New Haven, New Haven County, Connecticut.

Vital Statistics

Isaac Allerton (1586-1659) - Mayflower Pilgrim and founding father of Plymouth Colony (1620)

  • Born: c. 1586 in St. Andrews under Shaft, London
  • Son of Edward Allerton and Rose Davis
  • Died 1 April 1659 in New Haven, Connecticut
  • 1st Married - Mary Norris - Nov 1611
  • 2nd Married - Fear Brewster (1606-1634), the daughter of William Brewster (1567-1644) in 1626 (a Mayflower pilgrim). With her he had another son naming him Isaac Allerton Jr.
  • NFS #KFB3-W2V
  • Signer #5 of the Mayflower Compact


He was one of the original Pilgrim fathers who came on the Mayflower to settle the Plymouth_Colony in 1620. He was the second highest ranking official during its early years. Servant boy, John Hooke (?-1621) died in first winter.

He is believed to have been born in London, England, about 1585 or 1586 and was raised to become a tailor. A religious non-conformist, he apparently followed the Scrooby exiles to Leiden, Holland as a young man. There he married his first wife, Mary Norris, in November 1611.

Voyage of the Mayflower

In 1620 he joined the first group of Pilgrims aboard the Mayflower on the voyage to North America. With him traveled his wife Mary Norris (1588-1621) and their three young children; Bartholomew, Remember and Mary. Also with them was his Degory Priest (1579-1621), husband to his sister Sarah Allerton (1579-1633) (who stayed behind) and his brother John Allerton (?-1621) who was listed as a hired servant.


Mayflower at Provincetown Harbor

The Mayflower, originating from London with a group of Adventurers bound for the New World rendezvoused on 22 July with the Speedwell just arriving from Holland with a group of religious refugees from Leiden. Originally intended to sail jointly to the English Colony in Virginia it soon became evident that Speedwell was not seaworthy. Passengers and cargo were combined onto Mayflower (with many left behind) for the journey, finally departing on September 9.

During the voyage fierce storms blew the ship off course, arriving at Cape Cod on the Eastern Massachusetts coastline on November 9th. For two days they attempted to sail south to Virginia but exhausting supplies and fierce storms caused them to abort this effort and drop anchor at what is now Provincetown Harbor. On November 11th, the group decided to settle here and start their own colony. They wrote a governmental contract called the Mayflower Compact, Isaac was the 5th signer on this document.

Mayflower compact 2016

Signing the Mayflower Compact 1620, a painting by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris 1899

About the middle of December 1620, the ship moved and dropped anchor in Plymouth Harbor. All the while the pilgrims were conducting several exploring missions of the area and negotiations with the local natives. Almost half of the passengers died, suffering from an outbreak of a contagious disease described as a mixture of scurvy, pneumonia and tuberculosis. In the spring, they built huts ashore, and on March 21, 1621, the surviving passengers disembarked from the Mayflower into their new settlement at Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Colonial Affairs

Allerton quickly rose to prominence among the Pilgrim leaders, serving as William Bradford (1590-1657)'s assistant governor during the early years of the colony. After the adoption of a more formalized governmental structure in 1624, he served again as one of five assistant governors. In 1627, he became one of the eight "undertakers" of the colony's debt and made several voyages to London to negotiate with the colony's creditors.

While serving as the colony's business agent, Allerton began several business ventures of his own, relying on the colony's credit for collateral. These ventures failed, thus leaving his colleagues back in Plymouth saddled with a greatly increased debt. Also, Allerton was asked to bring over trade goods to sell to the natives, however, Allerton brought over retail goods to sell to the colonists and fishermen who came over every year. Later on Allerton did not mark which goods were his and which belonged to the colony. When the goods were unloaded, Allerton took the most expensive items leaving the Plymouth colonists with the cheaper goods. In 1629 Allerton brought Thomas Morton back to New England, and allowed him to live in his house; this got the Plymouth colonists very upset. This rendered Allerton permanently persona non grata in Plymouth.

Bradford wrote: "Mr. Allerton played his own game and ran a course not only to the great wrong and determent of the Plantation... but abused them in England also in prejudice against the Plantation," and later on he wrote "Concerning Mr. Allerton's accounts. They were so large and intricate as they could not well understand them, much less examine and correct them without a great deal of time and help and his own presence, which was hard to get," and also "he screwed up his poor father in law's account".

Settlement at Marblehead

Settling in Marblehead, Massachusetts, Allerton established a profitable fishing business. Fear Brewster died in 1634, and Allerton married Joanna Swinnerton sometime between 1634 and 1644. He was soon commanded by the Massachusetts authorities to leave the colony. He relocated to New Amsterdam in 1643, where he was a member of the Council of eight men. Two years later, he moved again to the new English settlement at New Haven, Connecticut, where he continued his activities as a merchant.

Isaac has many commercial interests in Plymouth, Marblehead, Maine and in New Amsterdam.

Allerton died in February 1659 in New Haven and was buried under the town common. Although his estate, when inventoried, appeared to be large, he was in fact found to have died insolvent.

Marriage & Family

1st Marriage: Mary Norris

Mary Norris of Newbury, England. They married in Leiden, Holland November 4, 1611. She died in Plymouth February 25, 1620/1.

Accompanying Isaac and Mary on the Mayflower were their three children: Bartholemew, Remember, and Mary, and a servant boy named John Hooke. Allerton's wife and Hooke died in the first winter at the Plymouth Colony. Allerton also had a stillborn son by his wife Mary while they were on the ship in Plymouth Harbor.

  • Bartholomew Allerton (1612-1658) - Mayflower Pilgrim - Born Leiden, Holland ca. 1612/13. He moved back to England, marrying (1) Margaret __ and (2) Sarah Fairfax. He had at least four children and died at Bramfield, Suffolk in 1658.
  • Remember Allerton (1614-1656) - Mayflower Pilgrim - Born Leiden ca. 1614/15. She married Moses Maverick before May 6, 1635, and had seven children. She died in Marblehead between September 12, 1652, and October 22, 1656.
  • Mary Allerton (1616-1699) - Mayflower Pilgrim - Born Leiden ca. 1616/17. She married Thomas Cushman in Plymouth about 1636 and had eight children. She died, the last of the Mayflower passengers, on November 28, 1699.
  • Child Allerton buried at St. Pancras/St. Peters, Leiden February 5, 1620.
  • Stillborn son Allerton was stillborn aboard Mayflower at Plymouth Harbor December 22, 1620.

2nd Marriage: Fear Brewster

Allerton remarried to Fear Brewster (some 20 years his junior), the daughter of William Brewster in 1626. With her he had another son naming him Isaac Allerton Jr.

3rd Marriage: Joanna Swinnerton

Allerton married a third time to Joanne Swinnerton, probably in New Haven, Connecticut before February 17, 1644/5. She was still living in New Haven as of May 19, 1684.

Other Household Members

  • Hooke, John (1607-1621)*, (probably Norwich, Norfolk) age 13, servant boy apprenticed to Isaac Allerton who died during the first winter.


Offspring of Isaac Allerton, Sr. and Mary Norris (1588-1621)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Bartholomew Allerton (1612-1658) 1612 Reusel-de Mierden, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands 15 February 1658 Bramfield, Suffolk, England Margaret Fairfax (1612-)
Sarah Fairfax (1616-)

Remember Allerton (1614-1656) 1614 Leiden, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands 12 September 1655 Marblehead, Essex County, Massachusetts Moses Maverick (1611-1686)

Mary Allerton (1616-1699) June 1616 Leiden, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands 28 November 1699 Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States Thomas Cushman (1608-1691)

Child Allerton (1620-1620) 1620 Leiden, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands 1620 Leiden, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands
Stillborn Allerton (1620-1620) 22 December 1620 Plymouth Harbor onboard Mayflower, Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts 22 December 1620 Plymouth Harbor onboard Mayflower, Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts

Offspring of Isaac Allerton, Sr. and Fear Brewster (1606-1634)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Sarah Allerton (c1626-bef1651) 1626 Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts 1651 Plymouth County, Massachusetts
Isaac Allerton (1628-1701) 22 May 1627 Plymouth Colony, Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States 25 October 1702 Copley, Westmoreland County, Virginia, United States Elizabeth Thurgood (c1630-)
Elizabeth Willoughby (1635-1672)


Offspring of Edward Robert Allerton and Rose Davis (1556-1596)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Joan Allerton (1580-1580)
Isaac Allerton (1586-1658) 1586 London, Middlesex, England, United Kingdom 12 February 1659 New Haven, New Haven County, Connecticut, United States Mary Norris (1588-1621)
Fear Brewster (1606-1634)
Joanna Swinnerton (c1610-)

Edward Allerton (1589-1590)
John Allerton (1590-1621) 1590 London, Middlesex, England 1621 Plymouth Colony, Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts
Sarah Allerton (1579-1633) 1579 London, Middlesex, England 1633 Plymouth Colony, Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts John Vincent (c1575-1610)
Degory Priest (1579-1621)
Godbert Godbertson (c1580-1633)

Vital Records

Bradford's Passenger List

From Gov Bradford's listing of 1620 passengers of the Mayflower:

Mr. Isaack Allerton, and Mary, his wife; with 3 children, Barthlomew, Remember and Mary; and a servant boy, John Hooke.

Mr. Allerton his wife dyed with the first, and his servant, John Hooke. His son Bartle is maried in England, but I know not how many children he hath. His doughter Remember is maried at Salem, and hath 3 or 4 children living. And his doughter Mary is maried here, and hath 4 children. Him selfe maried againe with the doughter of Mr. Brewster, and hath one sone living by her, but she is long since dead. And he maried againe, and hath left this place long agoe. So I account his increase to be 8 besides his sons in England.

Famous Descendants

  • Isaac Allerton (1586-1658)/List of Famous Descendants - Allerton is an ancestor to Presidents of the United States Zachary Taylor and Franklin D. Roosevelt. He had many descendants in early New England and Virginia under the surnames of Allerton, Lee and Travers.


Mayflower 2016b

Sources and notes

‡ General



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