William Butten was born 9999 in England, United Kingdom and died 6 November 1620 (Mayflower, Atlantic Ocean) of unspecified causes.


William Butten was a young indentured servant of Samuel Fuller (1580-1633), a long-time leader of the Leiden Church. Butten died during the voyage of the Mayflower while traveling with Fuller, who had been appointed doctor for the group. Butten was sick the entire voyage and died at sea (the first to die on the voyage) when near the coast of New England (November 6/16 - depending on which calendar you use.)

Ancestry notes

William Butten's English origins remain unknown. There were a couple of William Buttens baptized in William Bradford (1590-1657)'s home parish of Austerfield, co. Yorks, but they are all for men that would have been in their 20s or 30s and thus unlikely to have been referred to as "a youth." There is a William Button, son of John, baptized on 13 March 1605 in Worksop, co. Nottinghamshire, which is where some of the original Separatists met prior to fleeing to Holland. This individual might be a good candidate, but there is no evidence (beyond name and age, which could be just coincidental) to support this identification.

Bradford's 1651 Journal

Bradford recorded:

"in all this voyage there died one of the passengers, which was William Butten, a youth, servant to Samuel Fuller, when they drew near the coast".

Pilgrim Monument


National Monument to the Forefathers, commemorates the Mayflower Pilgrims, (including this person) who came to Plymouth Colony in 1620 on the Mayflower. Dedicated on August 1, 1889, it is thought to be the world's largest solid granite monument. Located on an 11 acre hilltop site on Allerton Street in Plymouth, Massachusetts.


Footnotes (including sources)

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  • Wikipedia (see below)

MainTour, Robin Patterson

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