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From Conscience to Liberty: Diverse Long Island Families in a Crucible that Gave Rise to Religious Freedom, 1526-1664, Margery Boyden, ©2019. ISBN 978-0-8425-9999-3. Published by the author, October 2020. Volume 1 is sold as a set with 2 parts.
This narrative cultural history about principles and sacrifices of earliest settlers of New York details their quest for religious liberty and civil liberties through stories of common people who did uncommon things. Most had immigrated first to New England with about 20,000 exiles who left their English homeland during the Puritan migration, 1629–1641, those eleven years when the king dissolved Parliament leaving increasingly oppressive forces in charge. When religious intolerance and persecution soon developed in Massachusetts, it caused some groups to migrate to Long Island hoping for relief. Others of their new neighbors had fled religious persecution in Continental Europe to settle at New Netherland. Long Island quickly became a diverse mixture of religions, races, ethnicities and cultures.
As the book explores the questions, “Who were they?” and “Why did they come?” vital lessons emerge from the struggles of a diverse people to build cohesion among their growing plural society, offering germane insights for complex issues today. This study of two featured family groups and their close associates provides a microcosm of a broader history in the Old World, New England and New York. By covering major events in the struggle for religious liberty that affected these early immigrants, their stories recall the realities of what life without religious liberty is like.
This history features Long Island’s Scudder and Townsend families with their social networks, including surnames: Alburtus, Andrews, Bartholomew, Betts, Bowne, Brown, Chamberlain, Coles, Conklin, Crabb, DeForest, Denton, DeVries, Estey, Feake, Fones, Gildersleeve, Gorton, Hallet, Harcourt, Harrison, Hart, Hawxhurst, Hicks, Hodgson, Holder, Holmes, Hutchinson, King, Lathrop, Lawrence, Leverich, Lothrop, Ludlam, Manje, Marbury, Mayo, Mitchell, Moody, Polhemus, Potter, Pynchon, Prior, Scott, Scudder, Seaman, Smith, Spicer, Southwick, Stevenson, Stewart, Stoughton, Swasey, Tilton, Tombes, Townsend, Tuthill, Underhill, Van der Linde, Whatley, Whitehead, Williams, Willits, Winthrop, Wright, Wood, Woodhull, &c.
To them, the hope of greater liberty to worship more freely, with integrity and authenticity to their beliefs, was worth their sacrifices. This first 150-years of their story informs general, local history and family history disciplines. It includes updated corrections made by recent scholars for some family data.
Part A is 466 pages. Part B is 490 pages. Fully footnoted, both parts include a full Table of Contents, Chapter Outline and detailed Name Index.