Every Saturday and Sunday I check out the surnames that were blogged as part of Geneablogger's Surname Saturday. This week I spotted two errors. I've already supplied comments to one of the people who needed some updates on their info. The second error is with this posting on John Hall. One of the most common errors genealogists made in the 19th century and early 20th century was to conflate people of the same name who were early immigrants to New England. In fact just yesterday I helped someone sorting out the three William Wood(s) who came to Massachusetts in the 1630s.
There were (at least) five distinct John Halls in early New England. Their records were mucked up by both Savage in his Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England and Pope in his Pioneers of Massachusetts. Jacobus first sorted out the two John Halls of early Charlestown in his Ancestry of Thomas Chalmers Brainerd. The best recent treatment of John Hall who arrived in New England in 1630 resided at Charlestown and then went to Yarmouth is Robert Charles Anderson's The Great Migration Begins 1620-1633 (Boston, Mass.: NEHGS, 1995), II:840-844. I descend from this man twice. He is distinguished from the other John Hall of Charlestown whose wife was Elizabeth Learned, the daughter of William and Goodith (Gilman) Learned. I descend from Elizabeth's brother, Isaac. There was also a John Hall in Roxbury, Mass. [see Great Migration 1634-1635, Vol. III], and another in Hartford, Conn.
The John Hall of Dover, N.H. is the fifth distinct person. He has nothing to do with Charlestown, Mass. at all. He doesn't come over in 1633. His son is not baptized in Charlestown in 1645 (that's the second John of Charlestown husband of Elizabeth Learned). His sketch in the Genealogical Dictionary of Me. and N.H. (p. 299), notes that it is possible that his English origins was in Ecclesfield, but caveats "but these records have not been verified or identification attempted." So someone along the line decided it was good enough and put it in their database. Database, uploaded to wherever, and now it's everywhere. Sigh. Boo. Hiss. And his wife is Elizabeth (---) not Layton (or Leighton).
In any case, I've reviewed this family since John's son Ralph Hall is called uncle by my ancestor Joseph Beard, Jr. in a deed dated 7 October 1713 (New Hampshire Provincial Deeds 11:301). The exact nature of their relationship is yet to be determined. So you see my genealogical path has come across three of the five John Halls.