By John M. Hunt, Jr.
The 2006 recipient of SMDPA's "Katharine F. Little Award for Distinguished Mayflower Scholarship" is Edith Bates Thomas, Co-Director of the Five Generation Project (Director since 1987) and Member-at-Large of the General Society for six terms. Though she is Past Governor of the California Mayflower Society and served as State Historian there for almost thirty years, Edie Thomas was born in Edinboro, Erie County, Pennsylvania, in 1925. Her first meory of Plymouth Rock was when she was four years old, and she has known that she has Mayflower ancestors (from both parents) for at least seventy-five years. She in fact has seven proven descents—from Bradford, Brewster, Cooke, Howland, Rogers, Tilley, and Warren. While she is a member of the California Mayflower Society, with dual membership in the Massachusetts Society, her two children and three grandchildren are all life members of the California Society.
Edie has taught school, and is an artist and a genealogist. She has many interests, including nature, cooking, and gardening.
It is a pleasing coincidence that Edith Thomas personally knew Kitty Little, in whose memory our Award is named.