He was a Stranger and ready for adventure. He had come from a poor family and, like many, wanted a fresh start with a fresh opportunity. Despite coming from what seems like a poor beginning, it does seem as if he made a good living as a shoemaker.
It was believed that the Pilgrims would sail to Virginia, but after being blown off course, they landed in Plymouth.
The London businessmen known as the Merchant Adventurers, under the direction of Thomas Weston, invested in the Mayflower voyage from the very beginning. The documents drawn up and approved by members of the Leiden church imposed certain restrictions on the Pilgrims' work week, to which they agreed.
But as the time to depart England drew near, the Adventurers wanted the restrictions tightened, which would have caused the Pilgrims to work almost 7 days a week, in effect to increase profits, without such due time for religious activities.
The Pilgrims balked at this and refused to agree to the new terms. William Mullins played a part in these deliberations, probably because he had a large investment and needed to ensure a satisfactory return on it as an Adventurers member.
Although Robert Cushman, who had been the Leiden agent for Mayflower voyage preparations, came to Plymouth in November 1621 to try to settle the rift between the Pilgrims and the Adventurers, it was never resolved.
Eventually, the Pilgrims bought out the Adventurers and formed their own investment company.
He would not last long once arriving in Plymouth. He died during the first winter and quickly put together his Last Will and Testament.
There is not much known about his parents; however, since he and his brother was a shoemaker, it is possible that his father was a shoemaker.
Some believe that William Mullins was married prior to Alice. It is possible, but there is nothing concrete in that theory.
He did seem to make a good living as a shoemaker and had money to pass on to his children in England. There were two children who stayed in England, but William Jr would eventually migrate to the New World.
William Mullins, his wife, and his son would not survive the first winter.
His descendants would come from his son William and his daughter Priscilla.
Family Tree Chart
John Mullins (1538 - 1584) - There is not any information available.
Joan Cheney (1508 - ???) - There is not any information available.
Alice Mullins (1575 - 1621) - She married him in England and came over on the Mayflower. She brought two of her children and left two of her children in England.
William Mullins Jr. (1593 - 1674) - He would eventually migrate to Massachusetts Bay Colony by 1637.
Sarah Mullins (1598 - 1621) - There is no known death date for Sarah. 1621 is just when she disappears from the records, but she most likely lived longer.
Joseph Mullins (1602 - 1621) - He sailed with his parents on the way to Plymouth. He would not survive the first winter.
Priscilla Mullins (1602 - 1680) - She and her husband would found Duxbury and gave birth to 10 children.
Edward Mullins (???) - There is not any information available.
John Mullins Jr. (1577 - 1643) - He was a shoemaker. Outside of that, the only thing known is his vital records.
William Mullins Last Will and Testament
William's will named as family members his wife, Alice, son Joseph, daughter Priscilla, eldest son (later mentioned as son William), and eldest daughter (unnamed but appointed administrator).
In the name of God Amen: I comit my soule to God that gave it and my bodie to the earth from whence it came. Alsoe I give my goodes as followeth That fforty poundes in the hand of goodman Woodes I give my wife tenn poundes, my sonne Joseph tenn poundes, my daughter Priscilla tenn poundes, and my eldest sonne tenn poundes Also I give to my eldest sonne all my debtes, bonds, bills (onelye yt forty poundes excepted in the handes of goodman Wood) given as aforsaid wth all the stock in his owne handes. To my eldest daughter I give ten shillings to be paied out of my sonnes stock Furthermore that goodes I have in Virginia as followeth To my wife Alice halfe my goodes & to Joseph and Priscilla the other halfe equallie to be devided betweene them. Alsoe I have xxj dozen of shoes, and thirteene paire of bootes wch I give into the Companies handes for forty poundes at seaven years and if thy like them at that rate. If it be thought to deare as my Overseers shall thinck good And if they like them at that rate at the divident I shall have nyne shares whereof I give as followeth twoe to my wife, twoe to my sonne William, twoe to my sonne Joseph, twoe to my daugher Priscilla, and one to the Companie. Allsoe if my sonne William will come to Virginia I give him my share of land furdermore I give to my twoe Overseers Mr. John Carver and Mr. Williamson, twentye shillinges apeece to see this my will performed desiringe them that he would have an eye over my wife and children to be as fathers and freindes to them; Allsoe to have a speciall eye to my man Robert wch hathe not so approved himselfe as I would he should have done.
This is a Coppye of Mr. Mullens his Will of all particulars he hathe given.
In witnes whereof I have sett my hande John Carver, Giles Heale, Christopher Joanes.