Wallens: Puritans


Ralph Wallen Jr. aka Walling, Walden
Born about  in Halton, Lancashire, Englandmap

ANCESTORS ancestors

[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of Joyce (Unknown) Lombard — married before  in Englandmap

DESCENDANTS descendants

Died  in Plymouth, Plymouth Colony, New Englandmap
Profile last modified  | Created 14 Apr 2010
This page has been accessed 3,211 times.

Categories: Puritan Great Migration | Anne, sailed 1623.

The Puritan Great Migration.
Ralph Wallen Jr. migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).
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Discuss: PGM

Disputed Origins

There are several conflicting estimates of the date of Ralph Wallen’s birth. It has been placed as early as 1590 and as late as 1600. Anderson estimates, based on the date of marriage, that Ralph was born about 1595.[1] Profiles merged into this profile show his birth in London or Lancashire. The village of Halton, Lancashire, near Lancaster, still has Wallen & Walling families living there and has been chosen here, although Ralph Jr., a tailor by trade, also very-probably lived in London as a young man.

Extracted Parish Records show a marriage in Rotherham, West Riding, Yorkshire, of a Ralph Wallen to a Margaret Lawson 13 July 1578. There is also a wedding at All Saints church in Rotherham on 02 Dec 1600 of Ralph Wollin and Margaret Woodruff. Unfortunately, there is no evidence, other than the family tradition that Ralph & Margaret Walling were Ralph Jr.’s parents, to prove that either of these has any connection to the Ralph Wallen born about 1590-1595.[2]

Ralph Wallen’s name was spelled several different ways. On the 1623 Plymouth division of land, he is called Ralfe Walen,[3] while in a 1627 land division, he is called Ralph Wallen.[4] Family genealogies state that his name was Walling. As his father’s marriage record was for Ralph Wallen, and he was usually called Wallen in Plymouth colony, that spelling is used for this profile.


The Wallen (Walling) story of Plymouth in New England begins in Halton, near Lancaster, a tiny English village, where three brothers: Richard, Ralph Jr., and Thomas Wallen, lived. Their parents were Ralph Wallen, Sr., and his wife Margaret (Lawson) Wallen, both from Yorkshire, England. They had been married in Rutherford, West Riding of Yorkshire, in 1578 and lived in Halton, Lancashire. Ralph Jr., was born around 1590. Richard and Thomas were born around 1595 to 1598. Apparently the family were Puritans who hoped to reform the Church of England from within rather than organizing a new religion.

In either 1619 or 1621 (stories vary) Ralph Wallen Jr., who had become a tailor in London, married a woman named Joyce who was born about 1600. Some family genealogies say they married in London; others state they married in Leiden, Holland, where a few hundred English Puritans had voluntarily exiled themselves, having a special church with an English pastor there. Several family genealogists state Joyce’s maiden name was “Nail” or “Nell” but as no marriage certificate has been found, this is unproven and officially her last name at birth remains “Unknown”.

What is known is that in April 1623 Ralph and Joyce Wallen sailed from London on the HMS “Anne,” accompanied by the “Little James,” bound for Plymouth in the New World. These were the 3rd Puritan sailings for America, following the “Mayflower” in 1620 and the “Fortune” in 1621. Ralph and Joyce’s first child, appropriately named “Ann Wallen,” was born either just before the “Anne” landed at Plymouth on July 10, 1623, or shortly afterwards. There is no manifest of the passengers on the Anne, however their passage is proven by their inclusion in the 1623 land division specifically for passengers on the Anne.[5]

Ralph and Joyce (Nail ?) Wallen had the following 5 children:

  1. Ann Wallen – b: July 1623, aboard the Anne or in Plymouth; m. John Smalley and moved to Eastham (Cape Cod) in 1645
  2. Thomas Wallen – b: 1627 in Plymouth colony; m. Mary Abbott
  3. Mary Wallen – b: 1628 in Plymouth; m: (1) Henry Ewer in 1651 and (2) John Jenkins in 1653; moved to Eastham & Barnstable
  4. Richard Wallen – b: ca. 1630 in Plymouth, died young
  5. Jane Wallen b: 1623 (may have been Ann’s twin; died at birth). Ann (Wallen) Smalley had a set of twins in 1647.

The Wallen (aka Walling) family lived in Plymouth on a farm: “Wallens Wells” near the Eel River where their neighbors were Nicholas and Constance (Hopkins) Snow. Nicholas Snow had been their shipmate aboard the “Anne” in 1623 and the families knew each other well. Eventually, Nicholas’ son John B. Snow, Sr., b: 1638, married Ralph & Joyce’s grand-daughter, Mary Smalley, born in 1647 in the Plymouth colony. Mary’s father was a tailor by trade, like Ralph Wallen.

Ralph Wallen died in Plymouth in February 1643 and was buried at the Old Burying Ground there in what is now an unmarked grave. He left no will and his modest estate was not probated. We know that he was alive on February 5, 1638, as he acknowledged receipt of a payment from Thomas Clark on that day.[6] He also received a portion of a cow in a distribution in July 1638. [7] He died before August 1643, when Plymouth Colony listed its men between the ages of sixteen and sixty who were able to bear arms. Ralph’s name was not on that list, nor did he request a dispensation, so he must have already been dead.[8] Furthermore, Joyce Wallen sold property on September 7, 1643, calling herself a widow.[9]

Joyce Wallen re-married to Thomas Lombard (b: 1582 in England) in early 1645; he had been twice widowed beforehand and ran an Inn at Barnstable on Cape Cod, near where the Snow family moved, founding Eastham that same year. [10] As Joyce was about 45 years old and Thomas was over 60, the couple had no children together. Thomas Lombard died in 1663; Joyce survived him and is said to have died in 1683.


  1. ? #S-201 Page 1915
  2. ? #S-202 Rotherham register
  3. ? #S-409 PCR 12:6
  4. ? #S-409 PCR 12:12
  5. ? #S-409 PCR 12:6
  6. ? #S-410 PCR 1:76
  7. ? #S-411 Eleanor Cooley Rue, “Widow Joyce Wallen of Plymouth (1645) and Widow Joyce Lombard of Barnstable, One and the Same?” in The American Genealogist, 67(Jan 1992):47-53 at 48
  8. ? #S-412 PCR 8:187-189
  9. ? #S-409 PCR 12:95
  10. ? #S-411 TAG 67(Jan 1992):48

See also:

  • Source S-409 New Plymouth Colony. Records of the colony of New Plymouth, in New England (PCR). Vol. 12 – Deeds, etc, 1620-1651. Boston: Press of W. White, 1855. Open Library
  • Source S-410 New Plymouth Colony. Records of the colony of New Plymouth, in New England (PCR). Vol. 1 – Court Orders, 1633-1640. New York: AMS Press, 1968. Open Library
  • Source S-411 The American Genealogist. (TAG) New Haven, CT: D. L. Jacobus, 1937-. (Online database. AmericanAncestors.org. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009 – .) (Subscription required.)
  • Source S-412 New Plymouth Colony. Records of the colony of New Plymouth, in New England (PCR). Vol. 8 – Miscellaneous records, 1633-1689. Boston: Press of W. White, 1855. Open Library
  • Source S-201 Title: The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England, -1633. Vol. 1-3. Repository: #R-172 Author: Robert Charles Anderson Publication: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1995
  • Source S-202 Title: FreeReg – U.K. Parish Registers Publication: Online database of parish registers by FreeBMD URL: www.FreeReg.org.uk
  • Source S1287001405 Title: Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s Repository: #R-172 Author: Gale Research Publication: Online publication – Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2009.Original data – Filby, P. William, ed.. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s. Farmington Hills, MI, USA: Gale Research, 2009.
  • Source S-1024580409 Title: Ancestry Family Trees Repository: #R-172Publication: Online publication – Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network. Original data: Family Tree files submitted by Ancestry members.



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