Harold was an 11th generation direct descendant of Roger Conant. Yet, in 1923, the year of Gloucester’s tricentennial, a strange confluence of events led to the Saga of Harold Varney – Who was he? His true identity buried, he lived 60 years believing he was the son of Roxa and Charles Varney.  Gradually over time, family members learned the truth.  Harold was a Conant by birth born of Frank Grovenor Conant and his wife Bertha. Relatives, compelled to keep his secret, managed to do so until Harold was 60 years old and Roxa, the woman he believed to be his mother, died.  It was only then that he shockingly learned of his real parents and that he was the great, great … great (8 ‘greats’) grandson of Roger Conant, one of Gloucester’s early settlers and the first Governor of the Cape Anne Colony. To read the full Conant--Varney story Click  Read Full Biography

If you would like to contribute a story but you are unable to record it or write it out, or if you want to participate in the 400 Story Project by using other resources to interview a special person or tell your story, please email:


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Thank you for participating in Gloucester’s 400th Celebration!


Gloucester Celebration Corporation. (GCC), is the organizer of the Gloucester Massachusetts 400th Anniversary Celebration. Learn More.

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