Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Wandering Wednesday - My Migration Path

Davis (Yellow) and Batchelder (Blue) Migration Paths

The above image shows my migration path plotted out on a Google Earth map.  By “my” path, I mean the migration pattern of my mother and father’s patrilineal lines.  It’s interesting to me that both sides of my family followed basically the same route from Massachusetts, through New Hampshire, and into Vermont at roughly the same time periods.  In fact, when I took a few measurements on the map, it appears that the two lines always lived within 20 to 30 miles of each other, with the exception of a 15 year period when the Davis family was in Vermont while the Batchelder family was still in New Hampshire.

When looking at a map like this, I can’t help wondering if the two families ever met in the past.  Both sides arrived in America in 1636.  Did John Batchelder ever walk the 12 or so miles from Salem to Charlestown and run into Barnabas Davis?  Did Edmund Batchelder ever come across Solomon Davis while they were hunting in the woods of southern New Hampshire as boys?  The chances might be low, but it’s fun to think about.

Another thing that interests me while looking at migration paths is what may have caused the people to move.  Looking at these two paths, it appears that the first major move occurred at around the time of the American Revolution.  Did the families move due to the events that were happening in and around Boston at the time, or did they have other reasons?  The second major move for both families occurred just after Vermont became the fourteenth state.  What was it that caused them to leave New Hampshire?  Were they unhappy there, or was the lure of new land and development in a new place too much to pass up?

Whatever their reasons for migrating, I’m thankful that my ancestors landed where they did.  I can’t think of a better place to grow up than in the mountains of Vermont.

1 comment:

  1. I can't think of a better place to grow up either. I love trying to guess at why my ancestors ended up where they did!