- Access to the Members Only page on this site (Member Login)
- Connections on the national and international levels
- Invitations to the Annual Meeting and other events - regional and national
- Opportunity to meet Underhill cousins, learn of their Underhill heritage, and support Society projects
- Publications - including the Bulletin and News and Views newsletter
- Historical resources and exhibits in the Society research library and museum
- Archivist who can provide limited help
- Genealogical services and assistance with Underhill research
- Society website - includes free posting of queries in the Forum
Annual memberships adhere to the calendar year, January 1st through December 31st.
The Sustaining membership category simply provides a means to give additional support to the Society.
The Underhill Society of America was founded in 1892 at Brooklyn, NY, by David Harris Underhill and other members of the Underhill families of North America. A Constitution was adopted in 1899 (revised 1957, 1973, 1991) and the Society was incorporated in New York State in 1903. Annual meetings have been held every year since the founding, except for a brief hiatus in the 1940s.
The Society published an Annual Report from 1893 through 1937, an annual historical Bulletin since 1954, and a semi-annual newsletter, "News and Views", since 1970. The following books have been published by or for the Society: Newes from America by Capt. John Underhill (reprint) 1902, 1951, 1972; Underhill Burying Ground by D. H. and F. J. Underhill, 1926; Underhills of Warwickshire by John H. Morrison, 1932; John Underhill Captain of New England and New Netherlands by Henry C. Shelley, 1932; and the Underhill Genealogy, Vols. I-IV edited by Josephine C. Frost, 1932, Vols. V-VI by Edwin R. Deats and Harry Macy, Jr., 1980, and Vols. VII-VIII compiled and published in 2002 by Carl J. Underhill, which reflect concerted efforts by many to update, correct, and extend the descendents reported in earlier volumes.
Over the years the Society has accumulated considerable material on Underhill history and genealogy, much of it still unpublished. This collection was maintained in the home of David Harris Underhill until his death in 1936, and spent the next 45 years in storage. In 1981 space was leased in the Townsend Society’s house at Oyster Bay, NY, as a headquarters for the Underhill Society and a museum-library for its collection. The Society has employed an archivist to prepare the collection for use by researchers.
In 1908 the Society erected a large monument to Capt. John Underhill, over his grave in the Underhill Burying Ground. President Theodore Roosevelt spoke at the dedication. The Society has also erected historical markers to commemorate the family and its association with various places and events.
Among many descendants who have contributed to the Society’s success, none was more generous than Myron C. Taylor (1874-1959), onetime Chairman of U. S. Steel Corp. and U. S. Representative to the Vatican. He sponsored the research and publication of many of the books listed above; erected Underhill memorial tablets; led the revitalization of the Society in 1950; ensured the preservation of the Underhill Burying Ground; and made possible the creation of the Education and Publishing Fund.
The growth of the Society to its present strength has also been due to the devoted efforts of its officers, some of whom are listed on the Officers Page. Together with hundreds of Underhill men and women, they have made the Society, now more than 100 years old, one of the largest and most successful organizations of its kind.
Objectives of the Society
From Sally Meyer of Locust Valley, NY:
As I live in George Underhill's house of 1790 and have had it put on the National Historic Register.
It was the 338th anniversary of John Underhill's signing of the deed with the Matinecock Indians on Feb. 20, 2005.
I have a copy of the original deed and an album of the research I did to apply first to the New York State Historical Preservation.
I have lived here for forty-five years.