Robert Mack Claffin

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Robert Mack Claffin (MacClafin)

Also Known As: "Robert /Claflin/"
Birthdate: (51)
Birthplace: Scotland, United Kingdon
Death: September 19, 1690 (51)
Wendham, Essex, Massachusetts, USA
Place of Burial: Wenham, Middlesex, MA, USA
Immediate Family:

Son of Unk McClaflin
Husband of Joanna Claflin
Father of Robert McClaflin; Joanne Smith; Elizabeth Wells; Priscilla Webb; Daniel Daniel McClaflin and 5 others

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Robert Mack Claffin

Robert Claflin aka McLaughlan, Maclaflin, Macklothian, Mackelafin, McLaflin Born about 1639 in Scotland Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown] [sibling(s) unknown] Husband of Joanna (Warner) Claflin — married 14 Oct 1664 in Wenham, Essex, Massachusetts

There are many different spellings of Robert Claflin's last name in the various records of the time, most with the Scottish prefix Mac or Mc, which was dropped in New England. He was born in Scotland about 1639 (source needed), and arrived in Massachusetts, presumably between 1650 and 1661. Various passenger lists during that period show a Robert Claflin arriving in 1652 and 1661 and a Robert MacClaflin arriving in 1661.[1] The name Robert M'Lachlan appears on a list of Scottish prisoners from the Battle of Dunbar, who were deported on the ship Unity in late 1650 to Charlestown, Mass.[2] He settled in Wenham, Essex, Massachusetts, and married Joanna Warner there on 14 Oct 1664.[3] They had 8 children. He died in Wenham before 1690.[4]

Occupation: Farmer, husbandman, surveyor

Sources ↑ Search at Ancestry of All US and Canada, Passenger and Immigration List Index, 1500s to 1900s. This needs a closer examination of the records themselves, not just the index. ↑ From the "Dunbar Prisoners" list, part of the Bartlett Collection of Elizabeth (French) Bartlett (1877-1961). held in the R. Stanton Avery Collections Department at NEHGS in Boston. A discussion of this list is at ↑ Mass. Vital Records, Wenham, Essex Marriages ↑ "Genealogy of the Claflin Family: being a record of Robert Mackclothlan, of Wenham, Mass. and of his descendants" (text available from

"Genealogy of The Claflin Family; being a record of Robert Mackclothlan of Wenham, Massachusetts and of his descendants 1661-1898" by Charles Henry Wight, member of the Long Island Historical society. 1903 William Green Press, New York.

Acknowledgments Thank you to Jonathon Dale Walter Myers for creating WikiTree profile Mackclaflin-1 through the import of WARNER James 1828.ged on Sep 13, 2013. Click to the Changes page for the details of edits by Jonathon Dale Walter and others.

Robert M’Lachlan, #67 on “The Dunbar Prisoners” list:

Every attempt has been made to ensure accuracy; please independently verify all data.

Published on: 21 Jan 2015 Updated: 15 Sep 2016

Descendants and Researchers

Surname variations: MacLachlan, Mackclaflin, Mackclothian, Claflin

There is a published work on Robert’s descendant’s called Genealogy of the Claflin Family: Being a Record of Robert Mackclothlan, of Wenham, Mass. and of His Descendants 1661-1898 by Charles Henry Wight, published in 1903. The genealogical range is from 1661 to 1898.

There are some references to attempts to determine if Robert was really a Scottish POW or not in the book but the author was not able to say for certain.

I have an oral tradition that Robert was an SPOW but the facts that are out there cast doubt on that tradition. I have read some of Diane’s articles and there is hope he might be. In 1661 he was first admitted as a townsman in Wenham. That would put him in his 20’s. To be an SPOW arriving in America 10 years early would mean he was in his early to mid/late teens. Most accounts that I have found said that “young lads” were not sent on the march to Dunbar but were released. That point/stumbling block is one of my many brick walls. Was Robert even old enough to be at the battle and if so, what was his role? Was he closer to 20 or 10? Did he look older than he really was? ~ Colette Rick

view all 14

Robert Mack Claffin's Timeline

Scotland, United Kingdon
Age 28
Brookfield, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
August 6, 1669
Age 30
Wenham, Essex, Massachusetts
May 18, 1670
Age 31
Wenham, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
August 22, 1672
Age 33
Wenham, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
August 22, 1672
Age 33
Wenham, Massachussets Bay, MA, USA
January 25, 1674
Age 35
Wenham, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
March 19, 1676
Age 37
Wenham, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
February 22, 1677
Age 38
Wenham, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony