Edward Bangs offers many examples of genealogical phenomena of the 17th century.
- He came to Plymouth on the Anne in 1623. We know this, not from a passenger list, but from the 1623 division of land.
- Edward was granted four acres of land in the 1623 division. This mean there were four people in his household. However who those other three persons were is still a mystery. They may have been family or servants. Some researchers presume a first wife.
- The Bangs family was first assembled by Dean Dudley in 1896 [History and Genealogy of the The Bangs Family in America, with Genealogical Tables and Notes.] This work is an exemplar of the late 19th century genealogy. On the one hand, it transcribes many records, some of which may not exist today. On the other, Dudley misinterprets early records.
- One of the misinterpretations is that Bangs was a shipwright. He was an innkeeper and farmer (yeoman).
- Edward had two wives in New England: Lydia Hicks, the mother of son John, and Rebecca (---) the mother of the rest of his known children.
- Mary Walton Ferris researched Edward in her well-regarded, Dawes-Gates Ancestral Lines (2 vols, 1943, 1931). She gives a proposed English origins for Edward at Panfield, Essex, son of John and Jane (Chavis) Bangs. This is a case where a man of the same name and age (for Edward notes himself as 86 when writing his will on 19 October 1677) was enough for her to make this identification. In addition, she cites a Hobart Diary entry to prove that second wife Rebecca was the daughter of Edmund Hobart of Hingham.
- The Hobart Diary does not include such an entry. See NEHGR 121:4, 56. It may be that the original diary was edited, but the original has not been found to date to prove such an allegation. Therefore, the Hobart descent must be thrown out (for now). It should be noted that Edward and Rebecca (---) do not name any children Edmund, Margaret or Peter, which are key Hobart names.
- Robert Charles Anderson's The Great Migration Begins I:86-91notes all of this. He also cautions on the proposed English origins as being too short on evidence.
- One other work references Edward Bangs, N.G. Parke II & D.L. Jacobus, The Ancestry of Lorenzo Ackley and His Wife Emma Arabella Bosworth (1960), but this clearly relies on Ferris's work completely.
- A google search of John Bangs and Jane Chavis yields 193 hits. They appear on 1,353 public trees on Ancestry.com.
It appears that no one has done any additional research on the English origins of Edward to prove or corroborate Ferris's work. I guess most people take it for granted, as I did up to 1995 when Anderson did his sketch. I descend from Bethia Bangs who married the Rev. Gershom Hall. She was born at Eastham on 28 May 1650 [Plymouth Colony Records 8:15] and died at Harwich on 15 October 1696. The proof of this marriage is in the gravestone as well as a 1729 deed cited in Dudley's Bangs Genealogy. This deed no longer exists publicly (the Barnstable Courthouse burned in 1827) and must have been in private hands when Dudley used it in 1896. It's current location is unknown. The Bangs family is ancestral to many Cape Cod families and even to the Presidents Bush. It is interesting to note that no one has done further work on this despite all these discrepancies.