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On April 24, 1638, Augustine Be Arch left Southampton, England as a prisoner aboard the ship “Confidence”.  His crime was that he was a gypsy of the Romany race and the English government deported any Romany gypsy found on English soil.  Many people over the years have research him and not found proof he was a Romany gypsy.

The ship arrived at Plymouth, Massachusetts in July 1968.  Either while aboard the ship or after his arrival at Plymouth, Augustine change his name to Austin
Bearse.  He was 20 years old when he arrived in the Colonies.

There are no records of who he married.  There are church records however of his children.  The pilgrims kept good records and if he married a white women there should be written proof.

In the 368 years since he arrived, his descendants spell there last name in over 30 different ways so there is a lot of branches of Bearse.  Many of these branches have the same verbal story pass down generation to generation.

The story is that no Puritan women would marry a Romany because of racial prejudiced.  So Austin in 1639 married Mary (Dove) Hyanno under Indian marriage rights at Mattachee Indian Village Cape Cod.  She was 14 years old, full blood Indian and the daughter of John Hyanno, Mattachee Sagamore.
These Indians were a branch of the Wampannogas or White Indians. 

Austin and Mary had a son named Joseph, Joseph had a son Josiah and Josiah had a son also named Josiah.  The second Josiah had a son named David.  Two things happen in David life that affected his descendants.

The first was his marriage to Rhoda Richmond.  Rhoda 4th great grandfather was Thomas Rodgers and because of Rhoda and David marriage, Thomas Rogers was my 10th great grandfather and a pilgrim aboard the Mayflower.

The second important thing that happens was David and Rhoda moved from Connecticut to a Mennonite community in Pennsylvania.  Most of their children if not all were born in Pennsylvania.  Then they moved to Welland County, Ontario, Canada where there was a large Mennonite Community.

The year was 1880, and David great grandson, William Wilson Bearss decided he would move back to America.  He would have taken a barge across the St. Clair River to what is now Port Huron, Michigan.  He than had to travel with his family in a wagon along the shore of Lake Huron until he took a path inward into the forest until he came to a place called Cedardale. He then chose to homestead on what is now Mill Road in Sanilac County.

Another family, headed by Francis Powley settled across the road from the Bearss’s about the same time.  There children grew up as neighbors and friends so it not surprising that three Bearss children married three Powley children.

James B Bearss married Minnie Powley
Mary Alice Bearss married John Francis Powley
Ellen Ida Bearss married Charles Ezra Powley, (my grandparents)

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