on Stephen Hopkins, of 1609 Sea Venture & 1620 Mayflower:

Except from an E-mail Bert W. Hoyt, 05/30/2008


Good Morning John-


Many thanks for the family additions!!


I pulled two Mayflower books from the bookcase this a.m. to seek more information on Stephen Hopkins.

He has quite a history. He was the only Plymouth member that had been to America during the time of

the Jamestown Colony. He was on the Sea Venture enroute to Jamestown. They were caught in a huge

storm that required the crew to strip naked to bail out the hold to keep from sinking. The storm finally

abated and they were able to run the ship aground on a Bermuda island. They found abundant food and

finally built two pinnaces named Deliverance and Patience and made it to Jamestown. There they found

the group starving. They helped the group until an English ship arrived with new supplies. Stephen re-

mained in Jamestown for several years. Following his return to England in 1614,after wife Mary died in 1613,

he took custody of his three children. Stephen Hopkins married Elizabeth Fisher 19 Feb 1617/8 at St.

Mary Matfelon, Whitechapel, London.


Stephen decided to join the Mayflower group: He paid for his wife Elizabeth (pregnant) and children;

Constance, Giles, and Damaris. His eldest daughter had apparently died earlier. He brought two servants;

Edward Doty and Edward Leister.


After his return to England, Shakespeare penned his play "The Tempest" based on the story of the Sea

Venture voyage.


Stephen likely knew Pocahontas when he was in Jamestown and John Rolfe who married Pocahontas.


Children of first wife Elizabeth: Elizabeth baptized 13 Mar 1603/4, Constance baptized 11 May 1606 and

son Giles baptized on 30 May 1607/8. Children of second wife Elizabeth Fisher: Demaris; Oceanus was

born on the Mayflower.


The will of Stephen Hopkins: he requests burial with his deceased wife Elizabeth; his great bull goes to

son Giles; twenty shillings to grandson Giles (son of his son Stephen); his mare goes to daughter Constance Snow; daughter Deborah received a broad-horned black cow and her calf and a share in a cow

called "Motley"; Demaris received Heifer Demaris and a white faced calf and another half of the share in

Motley; daughter Ruth received a cow called Red Cow and her calf and a bull; Daughter Elizabeth received

a cow called "Smythkins" and her calf plus half of the "curled calf" with Ruth. Four daughters in all.

Son Caleb, executor of the estate, received title to his house and lands and a pair of oxen. A lot of other

items in the estate are listed.


I will check my other book for more about the family and then see if that will help in defining the descendants

of Stephen Hopkins. Stephen also had a history of selling liquor in his home that involved some problems

in the community. He was nearly banished to another island by Sir Thomas Gates. He felt Gates didn't

have authority over the group in Bermuda not ending their voyage in Virginia. He was charged with mutiny

and brought before the group in manacles. He pleaded simplicity and apologized for his actions. He was

found guilty but rescued from his sentence by the group who secured his pardon. Apparently his escape

from death caused him to avoid further controversy until his later problems selling liquor in Plymouth.


Thanks Again for your Hoyt family additions!!





Links for reading on Sea Venture shipwrecked from a tempest for 3 days coming Bermuda, going to

Virginia to supply the Colonists there from 1607, Robert Newton’s group.