The Colver/Culver Family in America
2nd Generation: John Colver
John Colver was born 15 April 1640 in Dedham, Massachusetts, baptized 19 September 1641 in Dedham and died in 1725 in Groton, Connecticut. He married by 1665, Mercy Clark, daughter of James Clark of New Haven, CT. The name of his first wife is unknown. A Culver pedigree in the Registration of Pedigrees conducted by John Reynolds Totten and published in the New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (41:9092) cited that John Colver married, previous to 1665, Mary Winthrop, daughter of John Winthrop. Captain Totten wrote regarding Mary, wife of John Colver, That she was a daughter of John Winthrop is established by the Bible records of the Colver family of Groton, descendants of John Colver, photographic copies of which are filed with the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society. Totten concedes, however, that her name was not mentioned in her father's will and that her marriage is not given in any published work on the family of John Winthrop.
John Colver was a Rogerene by faith. This religious sect was very unpopular in New London because they denounced as unscriptural all interference by the civil authorities in the worship of God. They were the first body in the state of Connecticut to denounce the doctrine of taxation without representation; held that the Sabbath was no more sacred than any other days, and had an aversion to paid ministers and established church buildings. The Rogerenes first appeared in New London in 1674 and did hold to essential church doctrine and belief in Christ and God, but not to a civil or religious rite in marriage. John Colver, his son, was also a Rogerene. Both father and son suffered oppression and imprisonment on account of their religious beliefs.