There's an online book called “Genealogical and Personal Memoirs Relating to the Families of the State of Massachusetts edited by William Richard Cutter (1847-1918) and William Frederick Adams (b. 1848) published in 1910 that mentions Major General Humphrey Atherton. It says:
“General Humphrey Atherton, son of Edmund Atherton, was undoubtedly of the ancient English family whose pedigree is given above. He is the first in the American line. He was born about 1607-8, and lived in Winwick, Lancashire, England. He came to New England in 1635 in the ship “James of England” with his wife and three children, and settled in Dorchester. He signed the covenant of the Dorchester church in 1636, and was admitted a freeman May 2, 1638. He was deputy to the general court that year, also from 1639 to 1641, and in 1653 from Springfield, when he was chosen speaker. The next year he was chosen assistant, and soon after Major General. He was much employed in negotiations with the Indians, and made us of his influence with them in a great purchase in Rhode Island. He was thrown from his horse, by riding over a cow, and died the next day, at Boston, September 17, 1661. He was captain of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company in 1650. He married Mary, sister of Nathaniel Wales, and probably daughter of John Wales of Idle, England.
The inscription on his tombstone states that “a godly magistrate was he, and Major General.”
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