Esther/Hester (Mahiew) (mtDNA)

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Status Summary

As of 29 Aug 2017

  • Page created for Esther/Hester (Mahieu) Cooke
  • recruitment of individuals who are mtDNA descendants of Elizabeth (Mahieu) Cooke. Folks who are mtDNA descendants are encouraged to contact Raymond T. Wing (email: wing_genealogist AT yahoo DOT com)



Esther/Hester Mahieu was the daughter of Jacques and Jeanne (Unknown) Mahieu. The family were French Walloons, and had emigrated from the Lille, Flanders (now part of Normandy France) to Canterbury, England. It is unknown of Esther was born before or after the family moved to England. The Mahieu's moved to Leiden, Holland shortly before her betrothal to Francis Cooke in 1603. The marriage banns were read in the Dutch church on three different dates, with the last date being 20 Jul 1603. The couple were married either on this date or shortly thereafter.

The young family moved to Norwich, Norfolkshire, England, briefly circa 1606 but were back in Leiden a couple of years later. The older children were all presumably born in Leiden. Francis and the oldest son, John, were passengers aboard the Mayflower in 1620, but Esther and the rest of the children were left behind and came over three years later in either the Ann or Little James.

When Francis Cooke made out his will in December 1659, he simply left his entire estate to his wife, and made no provisions for how his estate was to be divided after her death. On 8 Jun 1666, the widow and children made an agreement to divide the land at Rocky Nook (now Kingston) into five equal shares, with the eldest son to receive two shares and the rest of the children receiving one share.[1] This is the last known record during Esther's lifetime. The will of the younger son, Jacob Cooke, dated 11 Dec 1675 indicated the property was now in the hands of the children, so his mother was presumed to be then deceased.

  1. PCLR 3:73

mtDNA descendants

Esther & Francis had seven known children: One infant (sex unknown) died in Leiden in 1608, another infant, two sons, and four daughters. One daughter, Elizabeth is presumed to have died young (before the family emigrated to Plymouth).


Jane (b1613-b1650/1) married Experience Mitchell after May 1627 and she died before Mar 1650/51. They had three children, one son and two daughters, Elizabeth & Mary.

Hester (b1620-c1672) married Richard Wright on 21 Mar 1644. They 6 children, 4 sons and two daughters, Esther & Mary.

Mary (b1627-1714/5) married (Lieut) John T(h)omson 26 Dec 1645 at Bridgewater. They had 12 children, 6 sons & 6 daus. The daughters were Mary, Esther, Sarah (never married), Mercy (never married), Elizabeth (married Thomas Swift of Weymouth and is believed to have only had one son), and Sarah (never married), Lydia (married James Soule and while they had three daughters, two of the daughters never married and the third daughter had no maternal granddaughters so no mtDNA descendants).

External links

Find-a-Grave for Hester (Mahieu) Cooke