Tag Archives: New Haven (CT)

Ancestral Heads of New England: MIX/MEEKS

BK Directory of Ancestral Heads of NE familiesLast night my wife and I went to Pittsburgh to visit a friend from our church in the hospital in Pittsburgh. She seldom gets to go with me, so afterward we got some dinner and then went to the Carnegie Public Library (main facility). As is my usual practice in the few times I’ve been there, I headed to the third floor’s PA/genealogical room where I then just browsed titles (and their index sections) for common names on our family tree.

I discovered this book Directory of the Ancestral Heads of New England Families 1620-1700 compiled by Frank R. Holmes (Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore) apparently published in 1923 and then reprinted in 1989.
Page after page is filled with alphabetical entries of last names and then, if known, the origin of that name, and the earliest American people in New England with that name.


name origin (any foreign words are italicized)
earliest family members with that name

For instance, my own MIX family is listed thus:
p. clxv (165), MIX/MEEKS
From mixe, an ancient territory of France.
THOMAS, resident of New Haven, Conn., 1643.
WILLIAM, brother of preceding, at New Haven, Conn., before 1650.

I have known about Thomas for almost three decades and discovered William about 10 years later. But in the 40 years I’ve been listening, gathering, researching, and reading about the various branches, I have NEVER run across a resource that went into the origin of the different family names! I LOVE this book!

I looked up (via google) the Mixe area in France and it apparently was on the western coast towards the Pyrenees and Spain. That’s all I have for now, I hope to someday unravel this British family with a French based name that immigrated to the New Haven colony 375 years ago. But meanwhile, over the course of several posts, I’ll share what I gleaned about the few families I got to follow in the half hour I had access to this amazing book.

Ancestral Heads 165

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Posted by on July 18, 2014 in 1643, 1650


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Rev. Stephen Mix

Today’s post highlights a Reverend Mix from colonial New England: The Rev. Stephen Mix.

Stephen’s mom, Rebecca, was one of the very first settlers in what would become the New Haven colony, coming as a youth around 1739 with her father Nathaniel Turner. Stephen’s Dad was Thomas Mix (actually spelled four other ways as well: Meeks, Meekes, Meaks, Meakes) and he immigrated in 1743.Thomas and Rebecca were my 9x great-grandparents (That’s great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandparents). I am descended through Thomas & Rebecca’s son Daniel Mix.
I discovered and purchased a book from eBay called The Colonial Clergy and Colonial Churches of New England by Frederick Lewis Weis. Published under the auspices of the Society of the Descendants of the Colonial Clergy (1620-1776), this book was published in Lancaster, Massechusetts in 1936. Stephen Mix appears on page 143.

According to the book’s abbreviations and notes key on page 238, this entry offers answers to these headings:

NAME: Stephen Mix
BORN in New Haven, Connecticut on November 1, 1672
PARENTS: Thomas and Rebecca (Turner) Mix
COLLEGE: H.C. means Harvard College, graduating in 1690.
DEGREES EARNED AT THAT COLLEGE: The A.B. and A.M. are the degrees he earned from Harvard.
—A.B. and B.A. are the same thing: this person had a Bachelor of Arts degree

—A.M. and M.A. are the same thing: this person had a Master of Arts degree.

ORDAINED: in Wethersfield, Connecticut in 1694
SETTLED: He ‘settled’ down to be the pastor of a church
SETTLED WHERE: He was the pastor for the Wethersfield, CT church.
SETTLED WHEN: He served as pastor there from 1694-1738.
CONNECTICUT ELECTION SERMON: was in 1735. (more on this a bit later)
DIED: in Wethersfield, CT on August 28, 1738

There is a note (also on p. 238) stating “All ministers listed are Congregational unless otherwise designated,” therefore Stephen Mix WAS a Congregational Church pastor.

– – – The section (pages 239-280) is a listing of all of those colonial New England churches, their founding date, their official name and a listing of all of their pastors (1620-1776). On pages 278 and 279, the Wethersfield, CT church is listed as starting in 1641 and was listed as “First Congregational Church.”

– – – An ELECTION SERMON, according to a posting on by Forest Church, was a pretty standard tradition in colonial New England. Church writes:

There’s a noble tradition in the ministry, going back to the 17th Century. One or two Sundays before an election, almost every preacher in the land devoted his sermon to the body politic.

It’s a great literary genre. Often, the brimstone was so hot that an Election Day sermon was the one sermon a minister might be remembered by.

There was a reason for that. No words were minced. He entered the pulpit and for the next two hours–count your blessings, folks–proclaimed a jeremiad. As in Jeremiah, the great Hebrew prophet.

Here’s how it went. The world has gone, or is about to go to Hell. The reason is simple. God is punishing you for your sins. Whatever is wrong in this world is wrong because you are wrong-headed, wrong-hearted, inattentive to God’s commandments, and God is watching and God is angry,and if you keep on messing up you will burn forever.

At least they burned for two long hours. Nonetheless, by the end of the pastor’s jeremiad, almost everyone who listened did in fact feel at least partially responsible for everything that was going wrong in the world. No more “throw the bums out”; the bums were us.

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Posted by on December 25, 2012 in 1672, 1738, Church, clergy


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