This fragment was recovered from the grave of Myles Standish, who was buried in Duxbury’s Old Burying Ground in 1656. Over the centuries, the exact location of Standish’s grave had been lost. However, Longfellow’s The Courtship of Miles Standish renewed interest in the historic figure. This coffin fragment was collected by Duxbury resident Elizabeth Sampson Owen during the April 15, 1889 dig.
Myles Standish, born circa 1584, was an English military officer hired to accompany the Pilgrims in 1620 as their military adviser. He played a leading role in the administration and defense of Plymouth Colony. He was one of the first settlers and founders of the town of Duxbury. He is buried at the Myles Standish Burying Ground.
Related Object: The Grave of Myles Standish and other Pilgrims by Rev. Eugene J. V. Huiginn, 1914
Rev. Eugene J. V. Huiginn (1860-1927) was the minister of St. John the Evangelist Episcopal Church in Duxbury from 1890-1892. He was fascinated with Pilgrim history and led the second dig at the grave of Myles Standish on April 25, 1891. This book describes his research and conclusions before and after locating the grave.
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