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Gary Boyd Roberts (born September 29, 1943, Houston, Texasmarker) is an Americanmarker genealogist known for his scholarship in Americans of royal descent, the ancestors of American presidents, and notable kin. Roberts is the retired Senior Research Scholar of the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS).


A native of Houston, Texas, Roberts received a B.A. from Yale Universitymarker and an M.A. from the University of Chicagomarker. He was also a graduate student at the University of California, Berkeleymarker. He married Margaret Melstrom on September 6, 1969 at Cherry Hill, New Jerseymarker. The couple divorced in 1975 with no issue.

Roberts is the son of Jack Carl and Mary Elizabeth (Boyd) Roberts. He is the great-great-grandson of a soldier from the Confederate States of America, Calvin Henderson Roberts of Johnston County, North Carolinamarker.


Roberts joined the NEHGS staff in 1974 and held a number of positions including Director of Publications and Senior Research Scholar. Roberts is a former member of the Society of Genealogists and the Connecticut Society of Genealogists. Roberts's genealogical interests include immigrant origins and royal descents; royal and noble genealogy; the ancestry of notable figures, especially U. S. presidents; colonial New England, mid-Atlantic states, and the South.


Roberts's publications include:

As sole author:

  • Ancestors of American Presidents (1989, 1995, 2009);
  • The Royal Descents of 500 Immigrants to the American Colonies or the United States (1993, 2nd and 3rd printings, with addenda, 2001-2002);
  • The Royal Descents of 600 Immigrants to the American Colonies or the United States (2004, available from NEHGS and Genealogical Publishing Company),
  • Notable Kin, Volume One and Notable Kin, Volume Two (1998, 1999, available from both NEHGS and publisher Carl Boyer 3rd);
  • The Best Genealogical Sources in Print: Essays by Gary Boyd Roberts, vol. 1 (2004, available from NEHGS);

With William Addams Reitwiesner:

As editor:

  • Genealogies of Connecticut Families From NEHGR (3 vols., 1983),
  • English Origins of New England Families From NEHGR (2 series, 6 vols., 1984-85),
  • Genealogies of Mayflower Families From NEHGR (3 vols., 1985),
  • Mayflower Source Records From NEHGR (1986),
  • Genealogies of Rhode Island Families From NEHGR (2 vols., 1989),
  • Massachusetts and Maine Families in the Ancestry of Walter Goodwin Davis (3 vols., 1996).


  • Introduction to New England Marriages Prior to 1700 by Clarence Almon Torrey, (1985, several times reprinted with the introduction revised).

In manuscript form:

  • “The Mowbray Connection: An Analysis of the Genealogical Evolution of British, American and Continental Nobilities, Gentries, and Upper Classes Since the End of the Middle Ages,” 23 vols., at NEHGS, New York Public Library, and the Society of Genealogists, London; 20+ manuscript pamphlets on notable descendants of various of his own ancestors (Howlands, Lathrops, Dwights, Stanleys, etc.), plus John Alden and Richard Warren. Parts of "The Mowbray Connection" are being prepared for

Roberts's work appears in his column "Royal Descents, Notable Kin, and Printed Sources" for the NEHGS website. Kinships between G. W. Bush and J. F. Kerry plus other materials appear on his website Notable Kin. In recent years, he has collaborated with genealogist Christopher Challender Child, of the Newbury Street Press.

See also

External links

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