All great and honorable actions

are accompanied with great difficulties, and both must be enterprised and overcome with answerable courage.”

                                                      - Gov. William Bradford,

                                                                       Plimoth Colony

                        Welcome to

                         The San Diego Colony

of   the

 Society of Mayflower Descendants


Society of Mayflower Descendants
in the State of California, Inc.

Last Update: 4 March 2015


Gail Raser

Asst. Governor                  
Anita Guenin

Recording Sec.

Kathleen Loftman

Corresponding Sec.

Ray Raser

Treasurer                                                   Sue Johnson


Budd Leef

Elder                                                 Kathleen Norris

State Board Rep.

Beverly Nickerson

Advisor/Past Gov.            Rich Bailey


Membership Sec.

Joyce Shiloff

Education Chair             Amy  Lusk Conboy


Norma Wohlfarth


Belle Bohn


Kathleen Norris

Web Master

Budd Leef


Important upcoming 2015 Mayflower Society Meetings and Event Dates

Mark the dates on your calendar now and plan on joining us for these General Society and Colony meetings and events.

21 Feb 2015 -
The Winter SD Colony Meeting at MCAS Miramar Officer's Club  will welcome our guest speaker, Dr. Eve Kornfeld of SDSU, and Members of the Sons of the American Revolution.  Dr. Kornfeld will speak to us about General and 1st President, George Washington.

7 March 2015 -
2015 Escondido Family History Fair at the Escondido LDS Church on the corner of citracado and Felicita.  Registration begins at 8am, and sessions begin at 9am.  The keynote speaker will be the "Barefoot Genealogist", Crista Cowan from  Pre-register at

16 May 2015 -

At the Spring SD Colony meeting Gabe Selak, the Public Programs Manager for the San Diego History Center will be addressing us on the history of Balboa Park.  Previous to moving to San Diego, Mr. Selek worked at two renowned historical museums: Plimoth Plantation and Historic New England. More recently, he worked at the Coronado Historical Association's Museum of History and Art. He has a love of history and passion for teaching, and produces public programs at the History Center.

21 November, 2015 -
Mayflower Compact Day celebration and luncheon at the MCAS Officers Club.





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- -  Q U E S T I O N  - -

W h a t   d o . . . 
John Adams, Julia Child, Hugh Hefner, Richard Gere, Ralph Waldo Emerson, George H. W. and George W. Bush, Katharine Hepburn, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Dick and Jerry Van Dyke, Marilyn Monroe, Alan B. Shepard, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Clint Eastwood, Dr. (not Mister) Spock, Alec Baldwin, Humphrey Bogart, Grandma Moses, Christopher Lloyd, Orson Welles, 3/5ths of 'The Beach Boys', Chevy Chase, and quite possibly YOU have in common with a small trading ship owning just one trans-Atlantic round-trip voyage to New England?

P E R H A P S    A    L O T !

For an estimated 30-million living Americans, their family's 'Ellis Island Moment' occurred in December 1620 on a lonely, cold and frightening stretch of beach at the edge of the Wampanoag homelands.  For these 'Saints' and 'Strangers' the next few years would be more difficult, dangerous, and wonderful than they could ever have imagined.  They suffered, persevered, made alliances, adapted, and survived, and their story is at the very beginnings of our common American heritage.

We honor their courage and determination this and every day!

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D I D   Y O U   E N J O Y
Kathleen L
oftman's analysis and discussion about the "Pilgrim 1-Year Survivors"?
Well, a link to the poster is located on the left column under "Pilgrim History".  Additionally, a pdf copy of her presentation has been placed at the bottom of the "NEWSLETTERS" page of this website.
(see the Newsletter page link located
at the very bottom-left of this page)

Hint: Download the pdf document, then print it from your computer.
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The San Diego Colony
The Society of Mayflower Descendants

~ ~  W E L C O M E S   Y O U  ~ ~

For our next San Diego Mayflower Colony Meeting in February 2015, come join us as we welcome our guest speaker,
Dr. Eve Kornfeld of San Diego State University, and San Diego Members of the Sons of the American Revolution.


T H I S   Y E A R   W E   A R E
our 394th Anniversary of the

Very 1st Mayflower
Compact Day

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Next Meeting:

Saturday, 21 February 2015

11am - Gathering

11:30 - Meeting and Lunch

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Our Guest speaker will be

Dr. Eve Kornfeld of

San Diego State University.

Dr, Kornfeld (Harvard 1983), will speak to us of the Life, Times and Importance of George Washington, the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army and the First President of the United States.  At this meeting we also welcome our guests, San Diego Chapter Members of the 'Sons of the American Revolution'.  Please join us if you can for a fun and interesting afternoon.

So, why are these folks smiling?

A few of our Colony Members attending a lively Thanksgiving Program celebrating Mayflower Compact day at MCAS Miramar.

Next Happening: Colony Luncheon with our speaker, Dr. Eve Kornfeld of SDSU, and special guests from the San Diego 'Sons of the American Revolution'.  Our meetings are open to any and all persons interested in learning more about the Mayflower Society, as well as other early American facts.  You might even meet and greet some of your 'Colony Cousins'.  What could be better?

When: Saturday, 21 February 2015, 11:00 am (gathering), 11:30 (lunch and meeting)

Where: MCAS Miramar Officer's Club

Program: A delicious lunch and Colony Meeting, as well as our guest speaker, Dr. Eve Kornfeld of SDSU, who will speak to us on General and 1st U.S. President, George Washington.

Please see our Colony Newsletter and eMails for further Mayflower Luncheon' Details

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15 November 2014 SD Colony Program and Meeting

The November San Diego Colony Meeting celebrated the 394th Anniversary of Mayflower Compact Day, and was held at the MCAS Miramar Officer's Club.

The Colony Roll Call of pilgrim ancestors was presented by Joyce Schiloff, who then welcomed new transfer member, Sarah Schiller, and also introduced new Mayflower Colony members, Dan McLaughlin and Jan Quigley.

Joyce Schiloff (left) and Gail Raser (right) introduce New Colony Members Sarah Schiller, Jan Quigley and Dan McLaughlin.

The colony program also included a presentation by 'Colony Cousin', John Farrell, who gave us a lively “Who Am I?” report.  He told about his New England up-bringing, and his journey to San Diego.  We certainly enjoyed his interesting life's tale (and also his 'native' accent).

San Diego Colony member, John Farrell, provided us with a fun and interesting "Who am I?" presentation.

Following lunch and the General Colony Meeting, the day's program featured our guest speaker, author and radio personality, Richard Lederer.  Mr. Lederer gave us a humorous and very informative presentation on various topics, from Shakespeare to Thanksgiving.  He, of course, came fully loaded with a plethora of puns appropriate to the occasion.

Author and national radio personality, Richard Lederer, makes a humorous point during his talk with us on Compact Day.

San Diego's own "Verbivore", "Wizard of Idiom," "Attila the Pun," and "Conan the Grammarian",  cleverly enlightened and entertained us with fascinating facts about Pilgrims, Puritans, Shakespeare, early Colonial Life and yes, even touched on some Thanksgiving 'facts'.

 *  Richard Lederer is the author of more than 40 books about language, history, and humor, including his best-selling Anguished English series and his current books, American Trivia, Lederer on Language, and Monsters Unchained!

His syndicated column, "Lederer on Language," appears in newspapers and magazines throughout the United States, including the San Diego U-T.  He is also one of the founding co-hosts of "A Way With Words" on PBS Public Radio stations.

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Excerpts from November 2014 Colony Meeting Minutes and Luncheon Program

15 November 2014

The November general meeting and luncheon of the San Diego Colony of the Society of Mayflower Descendants in California was called to order by Colony Governor Gail Raser at 11:31 A.M. at the Officer’s Club at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar (MCAS). She welcomed everyone to our Compact Day event and thanked Bruce Guenin for playing his guitar.

 Following the invocation by Elder Kathleen Norris, Sonja Itson led the Pledge of Allegiance, and member Ian Edwards led the Pilgrim Pledge.  Governor Raser introduced the special guests: State Governor and Elder General, Past Colony Governor Kenneth Whittemore, Guest Speaker Richard Lederer, Past Colony Governors Izella Dickey, Bob and Beverly Nickerson, Sue Johnson, Jan Landt, and Ray Raser.

 Governor Raser then introduced the Colony Board: Governor Gail Raser, Assistant Governor Anita Guenin, Recording Secretary Kathleen Loftman, Corresponding Secretary and Past Governor Ray Raser, Treasurer Sue Johnson, Historian/Publicity/Webmaster Budd Leef, Elder/Parliamentarian Kathleen Norris, Representative to the Board of Assistants Beverly Nickerson, Membership Secretary Joyce Shiloff, Education Chair Amy Conboy, Hospitality Chair Belle Bohn, and Decorations Chair Norma Wohlfarth. Governor Raser thanked them for their service.

 Governor Raser then asked all the table guests to introduce themselves.

 The roll call of pilgrim ancestors was presented by Membership Secretary Joyce Shiloff.  With 16 each, pilgrims John Howland and John Tilley tied for the most descendants present.  Membership Chair Joyce Shiloff then welcomed our new transfer member Sarah Schiller descendant from John Alden and our new members, Dan McLaughlin descendant from Thomas Rogers and Jan Quigley descendant from Francis Cooke. 

 The minutes of the May 2014 General Meeting were reviewed and approved by the Executive Board. The minutes were available for review on the back table in the conference room. Treasurer Sue Johnson announced the transfer of the checking account from Bank of America to U.S. Bank.

Member Ian Edwards read the Mayflower Compact. Elder Kathleen Norris said grace, and the meeting was recessed for lunch.

 After lunch, the Report on the State Board of Assistants meeting was presented by Representative to the Board of Assistance Beverly Nickerson. The meeting was held in Irvine CA in June. She highlighted five major points from the meeting. First, the Mayflower Society has a new colony called the Rancho Conejo Colony in the San Fernando Valley and Ventura area. Second, the state newsletter has changed its name to “California Mayflower Quarterly.” Governor Gail Raser and past Governor Ray Raser are the co-editors of the newsletter. Third, starting next year, only two of the General Society Mayflower Quarterly newsletters will be distributed by mail; the other two will be sent out electronically via the Internet. Fourth, the California scholarship may now be received by students living anywhere in the United States (not only California) as long as one of their parents, grandparents, aunts or uncles is a member of one of the California Colonies of the Mayflower Society. Fifth, there is a major initiative underway to digitize the paperwork stored in the filing cabinets in the headquarters in Oakland, California.

 Member John Farrell gave an interesting and amusing verbal self portrait entitled, “Who Am I.”

 A memorial service was led by Elder Kathleen Norris. She honored Virginia Kishbach who recently died and the Mayflower Society was notified on 3 November 2014. She was a descendant of John Alden, state number 2403 and national number 27346. She was a life member. Elder Norris also honored Janet Peterson who died on 19 August 2014. She was a descendant of John Howland. Her state number is 3216, and her national number is 37695.

 Assistant Governor Anita Guenin introduced the speaker, Richard Lederer, who gave a humorous and informative presentation on various topics including Shakespeare, the history of Thanksgiving, and interesting aspects of the English language.

 After the presentation, Governor Raser asked for old business. None was reported.  Governor Raser announced the new business. She reported that the inventory list of decorations was submitted by Decorations Chair Norma Wohlfarth to Governor Raser and Recording Secretary Kathleen Loftman. Webmaster Budd Leef announced that photo release forms are available on the back table in the conference room. Governor Raser asked the members to pick up their 2014-2016 rosters. There was one copy available for each family. She announced that a correction sheet with updated information will be distributed to the members. She thanked the Executive Board for their help with the updates. She also asked that name tags be returned to the sign in table. Finally, Governor Raser requested members and friends to sign the card for Dorothy Schwaner. She mentioned that Dorothy has been very instrumental in getting many members involved in the Colony.

 Governor Raser announced the successful opportunity drawing to benefit the Mayflower education program.  The $157 raised will be sent from the Colony to the California State Society’s Scholarship Fund. Education Chair Amy Conboy was assisted in the opportunity drawing by her daughter, Courtney, a former recipient of the scholarship.

 Governor Raser thanked Decorations Chair Norma Wohlfarth for the decorations and centerpieces.

 Assistant Governor Anita Guenin announced that Dr. Eve Kornfeld from San Diego State University will speak at the next meeting on 21 February 2015 at the Officer’s Club at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar (MCAS) . Her topic will be George Washington.

 Elder Kathleen Norris gave the benediction.

 The meeting was adjourned at 1:55 by Governor Raser.

 Submitted by:

Kathleen Loftman, Recording Secretary

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