English Surnames and Viking Names: Some Initial Correspondence

Naming a Most Recent Common Ancestor:

My cousin Anthony Crump whose y-DNA values show that we share a Recent Common Ancestor, and who has decided, like myself and my correspondent from Ottawa, to take an 111 marker y-DNA test. The following correspondence addresses what very well may be a useful area for research. If we know we have a Common Rscent Ancestor, what might be that Ancestor’s surname?

Below is Anthony’s correspondence and his question

” . . .  I will have the 111 maker test run also and when I get the results back I will send them to you.

“Our current [surnames] might be temporary.  Since we go back to the Vikings, what was our Viking name?  The Vikings ruled from 800 – 1100 AD.  However our Viking ancestry could have been earlier.  There must have been people prior to the Vikings that were pre-Vikings.

In other words the Viking that ruled from 800 – 1100 AD had ancestors.  At what point in history did our line of Viking blood enter into England where the origin of the sir name Crump was taken over?  What Viking did the deed?  Who was he?  I found on Y-search DNA from the area and with the I1 Viking gene that is somewhat of a match to ours.  Maybe you can look into that a little more with the info I sent you.

Your web site is growing all the time and is discovering and exploring new findings using DNA results and comparisons to break through the limitations of the paper trail.  From Vikings to Virginians is an excellent web page for those who study ancestor research.

The finding of the Viking gene was a big step forward.  Then studying of the Viking history was another research that unlocks the movement of the Vikings and the who, what, when, where and why they invaded other countries.  All this played an important role in our ancestry past and the development of who we are today. Very interesting and entertaining.

Maybe this explains some of my behavior issues in my youth when I had a great appetite for women and sometimes loud outbursts of anger due to my uncontrollable temper when things did not go my way. All maybe associated with my Viking blood.

“Thanks again, Tony (Anthony Dwight Crump)

My response to Anthony Dwight Crump:

Hi Tony -

My current hypothesis is that at least some of my ancestors (including maternal lines) were French Normans who came over from France (Normandie) around or just after the time of the Norman Invasion in 1066 a.d.

I’m hoping that my 111 marker data will yield some insights into my exact relationship with a French Canadian correspondent, who himself descends from the Norman Vikings.

Recall that between William the Conqueror and Edward I many of the Norman rulers of England had property in both England and France. It was only with the Hundred Years War that our ancestors had to choose whether they were English or French.

Your question about surnames is a good one. Right now, we have no idea. However, I probably would go with the assumption that the Norse tradition of naming sons for their fathers (e.g., Arne Olafson) continued for many centuries. It wasn’t until the 14th century (or later) that an Englishman was expected to have a surname.

Therefore, it is quite possible that some of these related English surnames (Saunders, Kerley, Crump, to which I would add Vassar and Ayres) relate to land possessions in France or England eight or nine centuries ago, or places that branches of the family resided in the 1300s.

Let’s keep in touch on the 111 markers.

Cordially, Bill

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My welcome to y-DNA Haplogroup I-M253

Note: I am currently completing the process of transferring my y-DNA 46 marker results form ancestry.com to ftdna.com. On the basis of what ftdna.com has have received so far (my DNA test kit that I returned to them and the marker values from ancestry.com), I have been identified by ftdna.com as being in Haplogroup I-M253.

In researching this specific haplogroup entity, I sent an e-mail to Mr William Hartley, who is identified as the I-M253 Haplogroup Project Leader.

I’m sharing the following e-mail correspondence with my vikingsandvirginians.com readership:

E-mail correspondence to Mr William Hartley, I-M253 Haplogroup Project:

Hi William -

I have recently transferred my 46-marker Y DNA test results from ancestry.com to FTDNA and they placed me in the I-M253 haplogroup.

I will be ordering the 111 marker test from them, and will be most interested in following your I-M253 project.

Cordially, Bill

E-mail correspondence from Mr William Hartley, I-M253 Haplogroup Project:

Hello William, good to hear you’ve joined our I1-M253 Project.

I see one Y-37 Burnett listed who is from Ohio, I1-M253 [Generic] no known ancestral origin but he has matches to the Creasy family, do you have that surname in your research?

Once your STR markers show up I’ll take a look, see if you match this gentleman, and see if I can better place you both.

Burnett Name Meaning – Scottish and English: descriptive nickname from Old French burnete, a diminutive of brun ‘brown’ (see Brown).

The surname is more commonly found in the North of England and Aberdeenshire, as you likely know.

The Y-111 will very likely tell us a lot more than Y-46. Once that result comes through I’ll look again.

E-mail correspondence to Mr William Hartley, I-M253 Haplogroup Project:

Hi William -

I do have genealogical information to supplement your I-M253 entry surnamed “Burnett”. I have discussed this at considerable length on the website vikingsandvirginians.com.

In fact, early in the first decade of the 19th century in Bedford County, Virginia, three “out of wedlock” sons were born to Priscilla Carter Burnett, the apparently estranged (but not divorced) wife of Williamson Burnett, a Bedford County slaveowner.

The father of Priscilla’s three boys was either Julius Saunders or a male relative who shared his genetic line. All three boys fathered sons and the male descendents of all three boys are numerous. I have direct knowledge of men from each of the three lines who have taken y-DNA tests that have confirmed this information.

My own male ancestral lines include men who lived close to and likely married into the Creasy family. (I have discussed this on my website.)

All of the families descended from these three sons of Priscilla Carter Burnett were members of two “anti-establishment” religious sects, the Quakers and the Baptists, who in the early 19th century were both anti-slavery.

Many of those Quaker and Baptist families left Virginia for Ohio (a free state), those who stayed behind were in anti-slavery counties of Western Virginia, a big chunk of which joined with the Union during the Civil War and became the state of West Virginia.

All of this information suggests that the Burnett with Creasy relationships living in Ohio is with almost absolute certainty descended from one of the three Burnett sons – William(son), Joseph and Christopher Ammon, whose mother was Priscilla Carter (Burnett) and whose father is Julius Saunders of Bedford County, Virginia or a brother Saunders.

Saunders and Creasy are prominent names in the Southern part of Bedford County, Virginia (itself in the Western part of Virginia).

You may wish to share this information with the Ohio Burnett you include in your study. Interestingly, most Saunders in the Sanders/Saunders DNA surname project are not I-M 253, but a couple are. I can see another line of inquiry to be pursued thee.

Cordially, William Burnett

I have further e-mail correspondence to share, but will first follow through on the processes required to order the 111 marker DNA test.

For those wishing to correspond with me directly on this matter, please use ffvsearch@yahoo.com.


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An account of my Y-DNA Testing Strategy to Increase my Markers to 111

Note from William:

The current turmoil created by Ancestry.com’s decision to no longer conduct or support y-DNA testing has led to considerable confusion.

For myself and others whose previous y-DNA tests have indicated that we share a Recent Common Ancestor in our male lineage, and who have wished to pursue additional y-DNA testing, it appeared to be a difficult problem in determining what course of action to pursue.

Therefore, I was pleased that my correspondent from Ottawa compared the y-DNA  I posted previously on this site, for members of the Burnett (descended from Saunders), Kerley and Crump families, with his own y-DNA values and determined a probable relationship, for which additional research is warranted.

I subsequently provided him with all the y-DNA values that from my own test. After his comparison, he provided me with the following suggestions as how to proceed.

“For the DNA test, only one male need to be tested as the paternal Y-DNA ancestral markers got passed down from father to son, son and so on. So all male Burnetts [note from William-that is, Bedford County, Virginia Burnetts determined to be descended from a person surnamed Saunders]  have it.

“One can be tested and all relatives share the costs & results. If you decide to do it, increase your ancestral markers to 111 (FTDNA US$ 389 full testing but if they accept what has been at Ancestry.com for a small charge, then increase from 67 to 111) and include these two tests one called SNP Backbone panel test to confirm that you are in HP I, and the second the SNP subclade to confirm that you are in HP I 1 or HP I 2.

“I do not know the cost at FTDNA for these SNP tests but I would think under US$100. This subclade HP I1 has 6 further sub-groups not all yet defined as 4 studies are underway in 4 Scandinavian countries ( Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Norway).

“These studies are being done by FamilyTreeDNA and Genebase. I checked my markers against the 6 sub-group and mine don’t fit in any of them. So my HP I1*. The star indicate undetermined. To be part of HP I, you have to test positive at two SNP Location subclade M258 (mutation from T>C), and M253 (mutation C>T) or to have DYS455=8, DYS462=12 which you have. To be in HP I1-uN (which is Ultra-Norse mostly Norwigian & Icelandic people), you need to have DYS511=9.

“There is a possibility that FTDNA may be ahead of Genebase and may offer sub-subclade tests. I am saying this because FTDNA test for 111 ancestral markers whereas Genebase offer test for only 91 markers and none for sub-subclade 1*

“Now that I have group[ed] together all our markers, we have 14 genetic distance because we have 14 markers that are different. Check the spreadsheet. This mean that your family origin into Ireland, Scotland, England, and British Isles may have taken place in 4 different ways: 1) First raid by the Vikings from Scandinavia (Norwigian or Danes) in the 5th or 6th centuries, 2) The Viking (Norwigian) invasion that started from year 841, 3) Norman Vikings that conquered and settled in England in year 1066, 4) immigration from France or Norway in the 16th century.

“M___ G___”

William’s Thoughts on Opinion of Ottawa Correspondent

Those of us who are descended from Virginia families that arrived in the colony in the 17th century, from my knowledge of English and of Virginia history, are very likely descended from – either through our paternal or maternal lines – from Norsemen in one of the first three groups that the Ottawa Correspondent identifies: first raids of 5th/6th century, Norwegian raids 9th century, or Norman invasion of 11th century.

Historically, the settlement of Virginia is most likely comprised in the majority by the Norman invasion. This group dominated the ruling class in England from the 11th century through the 16th, and through much of the 17th.

I think it is iless likely that there is a historical case of Norwegians or French Normans arriving in England in the 16th century, who then migrated to Virginia.

We’ll see what the more extensive DNA testing shows (or suggests).

Follow-up activities by William on FTDNA test:

Subsequently, I contacted Family Tree DNA and determined that they had a process (for a modest fee) where the values from my Ancestry.com y-DNA test can be entered into their data base. I’ve paid for that service, as part of a larger plan to obtain the 111 marker test.

Receipt of DNA Testing Kit:

Only a couple of days after I had ordered the Family Tree DNA, the kit arrived. I did the cheek swabs and mailed the swabs as instructed back to Family Tree DNA on Saturday, July 12th.

Follow-up with FTDNA Testing Kit Results and Ancestry.com Data Transfer

Because the Ancestry.com y-dna test was a 46-marker test and I have been advised to take the 111-marker test, I thought it would be useful to let others know how FTDNA follows through.

First, an electronic form was provided me to enter the Ancestry.com values (with the warning not to make any mistakes). These transfer values were accepted by FTDNA.

Second, I had to provide proof that these were the actual values recorded by Ancestry.com.  Downloarding the Ancestry.com results from their website (displaying Ancestry.com’s logo) as a .jpg met this requirement.

Third, a few days later, the swabs produced three rows of my initial results (totalling 37 markers) which are accessible to me on the FTDNA website under my Kit #. Interestingly, their results differed from Ancestry.com’s results, especially on DYS442, which equalled 12 on FTDNA and 17 (a value apparently unprecedented in all human y-DNA research) on Ancestry. FTDNA appears to have substituted their own calculated DYS442 value into their table of the “transferred” values from Ancestry.com.

[Without knowledge of how Ancestry.com calculated the DYS442 value, I am tentatively guessing that at some point in the process, somone recorded the number "12" for that value in handwritten form, and then that person or another person misread the "2" and recorded a "7" instead. Since Ancestry appears to be getting out of the y-DNA testing totally, I may never know.]

Subsequently, I’ve ordered the 111-marker test. Because I transferred data from Ancestry, there is a (rather substantial) discount. However, to obtain the discount, I used their 800 number rather than their website, since their website seems not to be programmed to calculate the discount as part of the 111-marker fee.

For others interested in this process, feel free to contact me at ffvsearch@yahoo.com. 


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Some “Points of Introductcry Conjecture” about 18th Century Persons Named Julius Saunders

The following correspondence from a relative in Houston has prompted me to pull together some thoughts about Julius Saunders of Bedford County, Virginia. Please contact me at ffvsearch@yahoo.com if you have information to clarify any of the issues raised here.


Been reading your commentary on the two Julius Saunders. I was recently made aware of a third, b 1755 in Virginia and in Kentucky for Revolutionary service. Have you come across him before?

A DNA test is forthcoming for one of my siblings. We are descended from George Woodward Saunders b 1819 in Kentucky. His probable father was John G, whose probable father appears to be the Julius b 1758.

P. S.
Houston, Texas

Hi P____ -

The DAR record contains only a fact or two, the name, the death in 1799, and the defense of Fort Logan.

However, this information in itself does not appear to me to be based on any document.

I did come across a muster roll of Captain Ben Logan’s militia.

Logan’s Fort Kentucky prior to Boonsboro battle in 1778 The Militia of 1777… The following is recorded exactly from the Draper Papers: A list of Capt. Ben LOGAN’S pay roll with oral note* – gives among others, v ig. Capt. Ben Logan Lt. John Logan Alex Montgomery, Ensign* Azariah Davis, Ensign Benj. Patton, Sargt. Wm. Menifee, Sargt. Rosel Stevens, Sargt. George Clark, Sargt. Hugh Leeper John Martin James Leeper George White John Fain Wm. Casey Robert Barnett John Kennedy JULIUS SAUNDERS, Benjn. Briggs Nich. Proctor, Sr. Nich. Proctor, Jr. Page Proctor Joseph Proctor Reuben Proctor Philip Trammel Geo. Scote Joseph Kennedy Jared Menifee James Menifee Wm. Whitley *This roll must have been made out prior to Sept. 1778 when, Alex Montgomery, Ensign, was killed on Kenton’s horse foray.

I don’t want to reject a lead out of hand, but would be very interested if you or anyone else has knowledge of what happened at Fort Logan, whether the person named Julius Saunders was the JULIUS SAUNDERS from the Fluvanna portion of Albemarle County. He would have been 20 if you use my guess of 1758 birth or 23 if he were born in 1755.

If we do a little more digging about this muster roll, and Ensign Montgomery and Kenton’s horse foray, maybe those will tie it to Albemarle.

Cordially, Bill

 I like your term “points of introductory conjecture” and decided that our e-mail exchange should be posted on the vikingsandvirginians.com site. I can always edit and revise if (1) we get new information to supplement what we have discussed so far, (2) if you prefer not to have your name associated with the web-post. . .

Several of our family history-oriented relatives do read the website, and may have some leads. In the meantime, I’ve begun to dig up bits about the Logan et al., especially the controversies surrounding Daniel Boone. I suspect our ancestors knew a lot of these players.

Cordially, Bill


Thank you for your reply and the Logan’s Fort information.

The DAR record was of interest to me because there are three Virginia-born Julius Saunders indexed in their roll, with two appearing to have served in different states with different years of birth, though being recorded as 1755 (A100552) and 1758 (A100553) – with Julius the husband of Jemima (A208813) being the third. Curious that A100553, or the “Captain” as he’s referred to in your writings, has been earmarked for further review. Given your attention to detail, it’s presumed that there is more information on his service to establish his rank and service record. Would love to have that info if you have it handy.

I know this means next to nothing other than as an early exercise. Thought you might find it interesting with your hypothesis of Julius being the son of Julius and not of George. If there indeed were two Julius Saunders of the same 1750s generation, it occurred to me that the elder Julius could yet claim one as a son without disqualifying the other as the son of George.

We’ve been aware of the potential parentage beyond George Woodward Saunders b 1819 of Kentucky, though we’ve not even penciled it in over the years because of a lack of direct documentation, and that research efforts have gone elsewhere in the tree. His first son James Wood Saunders* is my second great grandfather. His fifth son Wesley Zachary Saunders was a documented DAR descendent for this member 537158, linking him to Julius A100553.

Again, our documents run a little thin beyond George Woodward. He is noted as Woodward G. Saunders (inconsistent with the George Woodward from Census, land, and church records) on p 546 of Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler, and Brown Counties, Illinois, 1892.** His father is listed there as George W. instead of the John Gardiner of New Kent, Virginia, which has presented a wrinkle.

Other families’ online research appear to link George W., John G. and a Julius as the sons of Julius and Jane Hughes Saunders with various birth dates (and of course, no direct sources listed): ex. http://records.ancestry.com/jane_hughes_records.ashx?pid=25209794.

At this point I don’t know how much use this would be on the website beyond points of introductory conjecture. My next stop is to review an alleged large Saunders file in the Clayton Library here in Houston as the former work of a Katherine Reynolds. Of course we’ll also pass on any future DNA findings or points of interest.

Regards, P_____ from Houston

Several of our family history-oriented relatives do read the website, and may have some leads. In the meantime, I’ve begun to dig up bits about the Logan et al., especially the controversies surrounding Daniel Boone. I suspect our ancestors knew a lot of these players.

Cordially, Bill

In the meantime, here are a few issues about Julius Saunders that I feel should be advanced as “points of introducctory conjecture”:

1. Did, in fact, the JULIUS SAUNDERS, whom I believe was born in January, 1758 in what is now Fluvanna Countuy, Virginia (then Albemarle) participate in the Revolutionary War activities on the Western frontier (Kentucky)? He would have been 20 at the time of the muster referenced above.

2. I believe that there is a strong possibility that the grandfather of JOSEPH, Ammon and William BURNETT, sons of PRISCILLA CARTER BURNETT, was JULIUS SAUNDERS SR (father of JULIUS SAUNDERS of Bedford County, Virginia, who apprenticed PRISCILLA’s three boys.

3. My current thinking is that it less probable that JULIUS SAUNDERS of Bedford County, to whom the three BURNETT boys were apprenticed, was their father. My return to Bedford County in October 2013 to do some more research there is what has changed my mind. Absent any evidence of a separation between JULIUS and his wife JANE HUGHES SAUNDERS, who appears to have lived with him throughout this period, and the close association of this family with the Bedford County Quaker Community, it seems to me improbable that JULIUS’ wife and the Quaker Community would have permitted two married persons to conduct an ongoing extra-marital affair that produced three boys.

4. The Bedford County court in a very unusual move at a time when “home correction” (in that time and place, the acknowledged customary right of a husband to take matters into his own hands when a wife was known to be “straying”) to have issues a restraining order against Williamson Burnett for physically abusing PRISCILLA CARTER BURNETT.

The complaint against Williamson was brought before the courts by David Saunders.

[See Bedford County 1805 May 27 – Court Order BK:200 ‘Williamson Burnett was ordered on his own recognizance to be of good behavior towards PRISCILLA BURNETT for 12 months by complaint of Priscilla by David Saunders.”]

It is important to know why David Saunders brought this action which imposed himself in another man’s marital situation. What WAS David Saunders’ relationship to or interest in PRISCILLA CARTER BURNETT?
What facts DO we know about David Saunders?



Correspondence on the Old Norse Section of Y Haplogroup I1

Last year, having used DNA evidence to solve a 200 year old family mystery, I posted a series of speculative essays on my paternal line, that included The DNA Evidence for Norse Origins of My Paternal Lines.

Several other posts can be accessed through the category “DNA Studies”. Another researcher has brought to my attention the close fit between his DNA markers and those of the Saunders, Crump and Kerley families that I have identified in the past.


June 22, 2014

“Hi. My name is M_____ and I am from Ottawa, Canada.

“Your family and mine share a lot of similarities. My ancestor came from Rouen, France. The Vikings raided, concurred and settled in the North in France (Normandy) starting around year 841 to the middle of the 11th century. They also raided the City of Rouen. It was probably the Norwegian and Danes that settled in France. The Normans were descendants of the Vikings.

“I am confirmed in Haplogroup I and subclade 1. Also only 6 markers are different from yours. They are DYS447=23, DYS456=15, GATA-H4= 11, GATA-A10=13, DYS452=32, and DYS449=27.  My DYS385b=15.

“I also understand that FTMDNA are conducting a study in Norway. When I visited the site, I found many in the study to have HI1 in their results.


A Map of Normandy, with Rouen upriver on the Seine


WHB Note: My Ottawa correspondent and I are in the process of comparing information, which I expect, will lead to further research.

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Ancestral Families and the Colonial Trade (1648-1670)


From the periodical Gloucestershire Notes and Queries:

1321. TOBACCO GROWING IN GLOUCESTERSHIRE. The announcement recently made by the Government of their intention to permit domestic experiments to be made in tobacco culture may render the following facts interesting to Gloucestershire agriculturists. Tobacco growing in the southern and western countiesof England became so common about 1652 that the Commonwealth Parliament of that year passed an Act prohibiting the culture of the plant, and giving liberty to anyone finding it to cut it down.

This Act appears to have caused great dismay and irritation in Gloucestershire. In August, 1653, soon after the reassembling of the House of Commons, “the humble petition of some of the inhabitants of Gloucestershire concerning the planting of English tobacco ” was presented by General Desborow. who, from having been governor of Bristol, was probably well known in the district.


23 July 1652, Jacob Saunders of Holland, a mariner, aged 45, deposes on behalf of John Browne for 51 hogsheads of tobacco.


Richard Sanders, 28 August 1653, 1 acre near the block house in James City, James City County.


George Sanders will index, administrators bond rec. Northhampton County.

Thomas Sanders, 27 May 1654, Gloucester County, land near Mattapony River.

A deposition was filed by Edward Saunders, 30 September 1661, William Evans of Bristol, mariner, that in October 1654 John Freeman of Bristol, mariner, now deceased, delivered to Edward Saunders of Caerleon, Glamorgan, chirurgeon who was then bound on a voyage to Virginia, 3 menserveants to transport with him to Virginia, and there to dispose of them for profit.

The seaport region of Newport and Caerleon in Wles

[WHB - Caerleon іs а suburban village аnd community, situated оn the River Usk іn the northern outskirts оf the city оf NewportSouth Wales.

Caerleon іs а site оf archaeological importance, being the site оf а notable Roman legionary fortress, Isca Augusta, аnd аn Iron Age hill fort [Wikipedia].

Cromwell’s troops were there in 1648.]


June 6, 1655:

John Hodson and John Garratt 300 acres:

To all ye whereas ye now know you that I the said Edward Diggs Esq. do give and grant unto John Hodson and John Garratt three hundred acres of land lyeing and being in the county of New Kent and on the North East side of Mottopony River bounded as followeth (viz) from a marked red oake on the Southernmost corner of Thomas
Saunders his land with a South, South East line unto Arakeyaco Swamp, thence with Arakeyaco Samp to a line of marked trees running North West by West unto the other corner of Saunders his land being a poplar in a branch of Arakeyaco Creek thence to the place it began with his Saunders his line of marked trees. The said land being due unto the John Hodson and John Garratt by and for their transportation of six persons into this Colony so to have and the hold & yielding and paying to which payment is to be made. Dated the sixth of June 1655
Cavaliers and Pioneers, p. 310; Patent Bk. #3, p. 355


Amos Saunders, 1658, involved with freight on board the ship Rainbow. Named in court case.


Edward Saunders, 30 September 1661, William Evans of Bristol, mariner, a deposition that in October 1654 John Freeman of Bristol, mariner, now deceased, delivered to Edward Saunders of Caerleon, Glamorgan, chirurgeon who was then bound on a voyage to Virginia, 3 menserveants to transport with him to Virginia, and there to dispose of them for profit.


Francis Sanders, 26 June 1663, master of ship Black Eagle. Inwards from Virginia.


John Saunders, 1664 , testifies that he was paid for his work on board ship but does not know where the payment came from. Ship was the Rainbow.


Robert Saunders, 12 August 1666, a letter mentions that the Barbadoes and Virginia fleets have passed under convoy of Captain Robert Saunders of the St. Patrick, who met 6 privateers, sank 3, sent 2 into Portsmouth, and took one of 60 guns with him.


John Saunders, 4 October 1667, Howard vs. Roffey. Christopher Howard owned a farm and land in Lambeth in Surrey. During trial it is testified that the farm has now been leased to John Saunders.

[A] lengthy communication was received by the Government from Bristol, on the 7th August, 1667, doubtless emanating from persons interested in the West India islands. It states that . . . the plant was grown throughout Gloucestershire, even on the land of justices of the peace ; and that as half the profits of the land are paid to the owners for rent, their interest forbids them to destroy it ; that by the King’s order given to the- High-Sheriff of Gloucestershire, with a list of places where tobacco is growing, it was ordered to be cut down, and the names of the owners returned to the Council ; suggesting, as a remedy, a letter from the King to the Judges of Assize for Gloucestershire, ordering returns to be made, and setting fines for neglect ; and that as much tobacco is grown in the neighbouring counties, a strong prohibition be issued against its sale, and a commission given to search for and destroy it” (State Papers, Domestic, 1667, p. 366).

The Government appears to have followed the advice contained in the concluding sentence of this document. In a letter dated Bristol, 19th August in the same year, from an official underling, J. Fitzherbert, writing to Secretary Williamson, is the following : ” Met 120 horse of the King’s and Duke’s guards at Leicester, making to Winscomb in Gloucestershire, to cut down the tobacco planted there in con- tempt of the law.” (76., p. 399.)


Ambrose Sanders, 20 January 1668, merchant 5 hogsheads Virginia tobacco on the ship Unity of Yarmouth.


John Sanders, 10 April 1669, merchant 3 hogsheads 1,296 pounds of Virginia tobacco on ship Unity of Yarmouth.


Posted in COLONIAL TRADE, SAUNDERS | Comments Off

Ancestral Families and the Colonial Trade (1638-1647)


William Saunders, 12 September 1638, licenses to sell tobacco in Ingworth & Feering, Essex. Merchant charged 70 shillings.

Feering, in Essex, England

Feering is a village in Essex, England. Situated between Colchester and Witham, Feering has close ties with its geographically conjoined neighbour, Kelvedon.

Ingworth is a village and a civil parish in the English county of Norfolk.[1] the nearest town is Aylsham which is 1.7 miles (2.7 km) south of the village.

The village is 14.3 miles (23.0 km) north

Feering, Norfolk, England

of Norwich, 7.3 miles (11.7 km) east of North Walshamand 9 miles (14 km) south-southwest of Cromer on the north Norfolk coast.

[WHB - Note that, although Norfolk and Essex are both on or near the coast in Eastern England, the two communities of Ingworth and Feering have no historical tie other than both having their tobacco concessions awarded to William Saunders.]

Joshua Saunders, 15 December 1638, licenses to sell tobacco in London. Merchant charged L10. In 1639 his license to do business was in St. Catherine’s city of London.

From Thornbury, Walter, Old and New London vol 2, 1878: (Quoted in British History Online)

“Before entering the gate of St. Katherine’s Docks, where great samples of the wealth of London await our inspection, we must first make a brief mention of the old hospital that was pulled down in 1827, to make a fresh pathway for London commerce. This hospital was originally founded in 1148 by Matilda of Boulogne, wife of the usurper Stephen, for the repose of the souls of her son Baldwin and her daughter Matilda, and for the maintenance of a master and several poor brothers and sisters.

In 1273, Eleanor, widow of Henry III., dissolved the old foundation, and refounded it, in honour of the same saint, for a master, three brethren, chaplains, three sisters, ten bedeswomen, and six poor scholars. Opposed to this renovation, Pope Urban IV., by a bull, endeavoured in vain to reinstate the expelled prior and brotherhood, who had purloined the goods and neglected their duties. And here, in the same reign, lived that great alchemist, Raymond Lully, whom Edward III. employed in the Tower to try and discover for him the secret of transmutation.

“Another great benefactress of the hospital was the brave woman, Philippa of Hainault, wife of that terror of France, Edward III. She founded a chantry and gave houses in Kent and Herts to the charity, and £10 in lands per annum for an additional chaplain.

“In after years Henry V. confirmed the annual £10 of Queen Philippa for the endowment of the chantries of St. Fabian and St. Sebastian, and his son Henry VI. was likewise a benefactor to St. Katherine’s Hospital. But the great encourager of the charity was Thomas de Bekington, afterwards Bishop of Bath and Wells, who, being master of the hospital in the year 1445, obtained a charter of privileges, to help the revenue. By this charter the precincts of the hospital were declared free from all jurisdiction, civil or ecclesiastical, except that of the Lord Chancellor. To help the funds, an annual fair was to be held on Tower Hill, to last twenty-one days from the feast of St. James. The district had a special spiritual and a temporal court.

“Henry VIII. and Katherine of Arragon founded in this place the guild or fraternity of St. Barbara, which was governed by a master and three wardens, and included in its roll Cardinal Wolsey, the Dukes of Norfolk and Buckingham, the Earls of Shrewsbury and Northumberland, and their ladies. In 1526 the king confirmed the liberties and franchise of this house, which even escaped dissolution in 1534, in compliment, it has been supposed, to Queen Anne Boleyn, whom the king had then lately married.

In the reign of Edward VI., however, all the meshes of the Reformers’ nets grew smaller. Now the small fry had all been caught, the lands of St. Katherine’s Hospital were taken possession of by the Crown. Greediness and avarice soon had their eye on the hospital; and in the reign of Elizabeth, Dr. Thomas Wylson, her secretary, becoming the master, surrendered up the charter of Henry VI., and craftily obtained a new one, which left out any mention of the liberty of the fair on Tower Hill.

St Catherines Docks, London, England

He then sold the rights of the said fair to the Corporation of London for £466 13s. 4d. He next endeavoured to secure all the hospital estates, when the parishioners of the precinct began to cry aloud to Secretary Cecil, and stopped the plunderer’s hand.”


Joseph Saunders, 8 October 1639, of St. Mildreds South London, a merchant aged 39 gives testimony in a case.

St Mildred’s Church, London

The earliest record of the church of St Mildred is of its rebuilding in around 1300. This was probably paid for by Lord Trenchaunt of St. Albans, who was buried in the Church at about that time. Sir John Shadworth, Lord Mayor in 1401, who was also buried in the church, gave a parsonage house, a vestry and a churchyard.[4] A description by John Strype indicates that the medieval church was an aisled building, with a clerestory.[4] The patronage of the church belonged to the monastery of St Mary Overie until 1533, when it passed into private hands.[1]

Strype records that the church was repaired throughout in 1628, when most of the north wall, the nave arcades and the windows above them were rebuilt.[5] A major benefactor of the church during the 17th century was Sir Nicholas Crisp, a wealthy merchant and ardent supporter ofCharles I,[4] who, by 1663, owned the advowson of the church.[1] His gifts included two large silver flagons, which were still in use into the 20th century, and a five light stained glass east window depicting the Spanish ArmadaElizabeth I, the Gunpowder Plot, the plague of 1625, and portraits of himself, his wife and children. He was interred in his family vault in the church, although his heart was buried atHammersmith.[4]

St Mildred’s was destroyed in the Great Fire of London of 1666. Its silver plate, however, survived, having been taken to safety in Hackney in a hired carriage.[4] After the fire the parish of the church of St Margaret Moses, which was also destroyed but not rebuilt, was united to that of St Mildred.[4]

The boundaries of East London parishes surrounding St Mildred Poulty


Joseph Saunders, 5 December 1640, another court battle involving a ship named Truelove. It was supposed to return to London but instead diverted to Holland to sell its goods.

[WHB - Note the following at http://immigrantships.net]: 

True Love, departed from London, England, and arrived in Bermuda, 10 June 1635.

Note the following about the September. 1635 voyage of the Truelove, Master John Gibbs, to Massachusetts:

“This table [see http://www.winthropsociety.com] details the roll of passengers of the Truelove, which sailed from London, mid-September, 1635, bound for New England. The ship arrived safe at Massachusetts Bay, although some of the persons listed below may not have arrived. Some may have decided not to sail. Some servants may have run away. And there usually was some loss of life among the passengers from disease and malnutrition during the passage.

“This information was transcribed in the 19th century by James Savage from records found in London, at the Augmentation Office, Rolls Court, Westminster.”]

 1645 -

“[D]uring the English Civil War . trade with the Dutch provided an increase in demand . . .  Pecquet, Cato Journal, ibid.


17 April 1646, John Hayes vs. Joseph Saunders, Francis Lathbury and Matthew Saunders. Another tobacco related case.

From: Coldham, Peter Wilson, English Adventurers and Emigrants, 1609-1660: Abstracts of Examinations in the High Court of Admiralty with Reference to Colonial America.

“Francis Lathbury, book keeper to Joseph Saunders, aged 24, (of St Mildred Poultry, Lond, merchant age 25/26). (3 depositions). Joseph Saunders, to whom he was apprenticed for 8 years, was the owner of the Bonny Bess which he bought from John Thierry of London, merchant, in May or June 1636 for a voyage to Virginia, and appointed Zachary Flute to go as her Master.

“The deponent paid Thierry his account and paid the ship’s purser, Edward Searchfield, for repairs carried out on her. His then master, Joseph Saunders, received one Clarke for his passage to Virginia. After the death of Flute, William Blackler was elected Master.

“The deponent is part owner of the Truelove which carried passengers from Virginia to London in 1638 at the rate of 5 pounds or 5 pounds.10s. a head. Those who shipped goods on the Flower de Luce included his brother Arthur Lathbury of London, merchant, Edmund Saunders, ___ Penryn, ____ Bradley, Simon Hake, and Henry Ledgington. She arrived home in London before the Bonny Bess. (Vols 53 & 54).

From Coldham, ibid., p. 83-84:

Abraham Orten of St Sepulchre, London, mariner aged 60. He was employed to go as cook in the Flower de Luce to Virginia and she went in company with the Bonny Bess, both having been set out by Joseph Saunders. Soe of the goods salvaged from the latter ship were brought ashore on Chaptain Thurygood’s plantation (Vol 54).

From Coldham, ibid., p. 84.

“John White of St sepulchre, London, grocer aged 35. The tobacco brought to London in the Flower de Luce proved mostly rotten and Francisc Lathbury bought part of it. Stafford, Joseph Saunders’ agent, kept the key of the warehouse where the tobacco was stored (Vol. 54)


20)  21 July 1647, Joseph Saunders vs. William Holiday. In 1638, he employed Holiday, the a resident of Rotterdam, to conduct his affairs in Holland. This included dealing in Virginia tobacco. Trying to settle account.

Posted in COLONIAL TRADE, SAUNDERS | Comments Off

Ancestral Families and the Colonial Trade (1633-1637)


“Tobacco prices briefly recovered . . “ Pecquet, Cato Jorunal, ibid.


Thomas Sanders, 22 May 1633, imported 200 pounds if tobacco on the ship Lyon.

[WHB -The ship Lyon was associated with several voyages to Massachusetts carrying pilgrims from England. It made several voyages between 1630 and 1632 under Captain William Peirce.]

John Saunders, 16 October 1633, Obligation signed by Leonard Calvert, Jerome Hawley, Thomas Cornwallis and John. Lord Baltimore has hired Richard Orchard to be master of the Dove for a voyage from London to Virginia. Lists what they will pay as wages for the crew per month.

[The following is from the wikipedia.com biography of Leonard Calvert]:

Portrait of Leonard Calver (by Florence MacKubin)

Leonard Calvert (1606 – June 9, 1647) was the First Proprietary Governor of Maryland.[1] He was the second son of George Calvert, 1st Baron Baltimore, (1579-1632), the first proprietary of the Province of Maryland. His elder brother Cecil, (1605-1675), who inherited the colony and the title upon the death of their father George, April 15, 1632, appointed Leonard as governor of the Colony in his absence. Leonard was obviously named after his grandfather, the father of George who was also “Leonard Calvert” of Yorkshire[2]

[The following is from mdroots.thinkport.org]:

Jerome Hawley (1590-1638)

Jerome Hawley voyaged to Maryland aboard the Ark in 1633. He was a merchant from a wealthy English family. Some of his family had already settled in Virginia. His older brother was the Governor of the English colony on Barbados.

As an investor in the Maryland colony, Jerome gave Lord Calvert some money to support the voyage of the Ark and the Dove. Jerome was a Roman Catholic like Lord Baltimore. He and his wife, Eleanor hoped their regious beliefs would be tolerated in the new colony of Maryland.

Jerome returned to England in 1635. There he and John Lewger published a booklet called A Relation of Maryland. They wrote this booklet to encourage other English families to come and settle in Maryland. The book describes how the colonists lived. It also tells about the friendship between the English and Native Americans in Maryland.

While Jerome was in England, he asked the King if he could work in the government of the Virginia colony. The King made him a councilor and treasurer of Virginia. Jerome also served inQueen Henrietta Maria’s household. He died in 1638 with many debts from his investments in English colonies.

[The following is from the wikipedia.com biography of Thomas Cornwallis]:

Thomas was probably the grandson, or possibly the second son (undocumented)[1][2][3] of Sir Charles Cornwallis of Beeston, Norfolk (d. 1629), an ambassador to Spain and brother of Elizabeth Cornwallis and Sir William Cornwallis of Brome, the direct ancestor ofCharles Cornwallis, 1st Marquess Cornwallis. Thomas was probably the son (or brother) of the author William Cornwallis.[This following is from the wikipedia.com biography of Thomas Cornwallis

As the second son, he could not hope to inherit his father’s land. The Cornwallis family were Roman Catholic Recusants and therefore George Calvert's project of an autonomous colony in the New World for English Catholics appealed to him. In 1634 he accompanied Leonard Calvert to what was then Virginia and became a Commissioner to the Governor. This put him in a powerful advisory position to Leonard Calvert. In 1635 Cornwallis fought the Virginian colonist William Claiborne over the jurisdiction of Kent Island, and captured it in 1638. In 1643 he defended the colony against a Native American attack.

In 1644, however, Richard Ingle sailed into Chesapeake Bay with his ship Reformation and fired on St. Mary’s City. Cornwallis’ land was occupied and many of the buildings he had constructed were destroyed. As a result of these losses and his loss of influence in the colony, Cornwallis returned to England, where he died at some point after 4 March 1675. The tomb of Cornwallis and his wife is inside St Martin's Church East Horsley.]


Thomas Sanders, 19 March 1634, license to sell tobacco in Swanscombe and Cliffe, Kent.

[WHB - Note the following article from wikipedia.com which about the Danish/Viking/Norman periods of Swanscombe, which has been a location for shipping since early historic or prehistoric times.]

“From Crayford to the Isle of Thanet, the Danes occupied the land and terrorised the Saxon inhabitants, giving rise to the appearance of Deneholes, of which many have survived to this day. These were wells, cut deep into the chalk landscape, thought to be for concealing people and goods. They have a simple vertical shaft with short tunnels bearing horizontally from the base.

“The Vikings settled throughout the winter along the Thames estuary with their ships, and established camps in Kent and Essex. In surveying the distribution of the many deneholes along the Thames corridor it would appear that Essex, on the northern shore of the Thames, sustained a greater influx of Vikings than did Kent, there being considerably more recorded deneholes in Essex, particularly around Orsett and Grays – see Hangman’s Wood.

“Archaeological digs and centuries of tilling have revealed a Danish castle and settlement, with pottery, anchors, weapons and some ships’ timbers. The settlement was later variously called Suinescamp (in the Domesday Book), Sweinscamp and Swanscamp, the name deriving from the Viking king Sweyn Forkbeard, who landed in East Anglia, and became King of England in 1013. Father of Canute, Sweyn died at Gainsborough on the Trent in 1014. Canute (Cnut) died in 1035 his sons were unable to hold on to his empire, he was king of England, Scotland, Norway and Denmark.

Other research suggests that deneholes might have been dug as a method of extracting chalk for use on the fields above, or the mining may have been a by-product of defence. In any case, the practice reached a peak around the 13th – 14th centuries, long after the Viking raids had ceased.

Norman Conquest

In 1066 Swanscombe locals massed an army in defiance of William I, and so won the right to continue their ancient privileges, including the tradition of passing inheritance by gavelkind. The men of Kent met William near Swanscombe, where the Saxons concealed their number with branches, thus intimidating the Norman army. They were offered a truce that left Kent as the only region in England which William did not conquer, and leaving William known as William the Bastard (never conqueror) in this area of England alone. Kent County Council have inherited the motto Invicta, meaning unconquered.”

Medieval Cliffe, Kent (selection from a wikipedia.com post)

St Helen’s church at Cliffe was built about 1260 and was constructed in the local style of alternating layers of Kent ragstone and squared black flint. It is one of the largest parish churches in Kent, and the only dedicated to St Helen, the size of the church revealing its past importance.

Above the porch is a muniments room containing important historical documents.

“During the 14th century Cliffe was the site of a farm owned by the monks of Christ’s Church, Canterbury, when the village had a population of about 3,000.

“In the late Middle Ages the village of Cliffe supported a port, which thrived until a disastrous fire in 1520 stifled its growth, marking a period of decline, accentuated by the silting of the marshes of the Thames estuary. Nevertheless, during the 16th century, Cliffe-at-Hoo was still considered a town. However, by the middle of the 19th century the population had slumped to about 900.”

Arthur Sanders, 1634, license to sell tobacco in Salisbury, Wiltshire

[WHB - If one searches the St Edmunds Parish, Wiltshire and Wiltshire parish records for the surnames Sanders and Saunders in the late 16th and early 17th centuries, one finds the multiple entries, indicating that the Sanders/Saunders family was well established in this area.]

Witshire 1560 Richard Saunders and Alice Newman

Richard Saunders and Agnis Sutton

St Edmunds Parish 1563 Marriages: Thomas Sanders and Agnis Wheeler

Wiltshire Parish 1563 Robert Sanders and Anna Dackam

St Edmunds Parish 1565  James Spickernell and Katherine Saunders

Richard Saunders and Chrystyan Reade

Wyllyam Page and Anna Saunders

Wiltshire 1568

St Edmunds Parish 1607 John Sanders and Grace Burrowe

St Edmunds Parish 1609 Robert Sanders and Joan Rendall; Thomas Sanders and Marie Gauntlett

St Edmunds Parish 1616 Thomas Sanders and Ursula West

St Edmunds Parish 1628 Thomas Sanders and Joan Greedie

Wiltshire Parish  1638 Steven Warren and Katherine Sanders: William Perry and Alice Sanders


Samuel Sanders, 1634, license to sell tobacco in Wallingford, Berkshire

Note the following wikipedia.com entry on two prominent Saunders of Wallingford:

John Saunders (c 1589 – 29 April 1638) was an English lawyer and politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1621 and 1629.

Saunders was the son of Thomas Saunders of Woolstone in Berkshire (now Oxfordshire). He matriculated at University College, Oxford on 22 May 1601 aged 11 and was awarded BA on 28 January 1608. He was called to the bar at Middle Temple in 1616 and became Recorder of Reading, Berkshire.[1] In 1621, he was elected Member of Parliament for Reading. He was re-elected MP for Reading in 1624, 1625, 1626 and 1628 and sat until 1629 when King Charles decided to rule without parliament for eleven years.[2]

Saunders died in 1638 at the age of about 48.[1]

Saunders married Margaret Evelyn, daughter of John Evelyn of Godstone, Surrey. His son Thomas was later MP for Wallingford.[3]

Thomas Saunders (1626 – c 1670) was an English landowner and politician who sat in the House of Commons in 1660.

Saunders was the son of John Saunders of Reading, Berkshire and his wife Margaret Evelyn, daughter of John Evelyn of Godstone, Surrey. He succeeded his father in 1638 and purchased the estate of Mongewell Park, across the River Thames from Wallingford. In 1660, he was elected Member of Parliament forWallingford in a by-election to the Convention Parliament. He was commissioner for assessment for Berkshire from August 1660 and for Oxfordshire from 1661. He was J.P. for Oxfordshire from 1661, and for Wallingford and for Berkshire from 1664.[1]

Saunders died between 25 October 1669 when he made his will and 15 February 1671 when it was proved.[1]

Saunders married Anne Morris, daughter of Thomas Morris of Great Coxwell, Berkshire and had two sons and a daughter.[1]


From www.cotswold.info:

“It was during the 16th and early 17th centuries that the area around Winchcombe was extremely poor , it was during this period that a family named Tracy established themselves at Toddington, the eldest son Sir John Tracy became involved with a John Stratford who was related to him by marriage, they set up a business together to grow tobacco in the area, with plantations at Toddington and Bishops Cleeve. “Tobacco was widely grown on the Cotswolds, the Vale of Tewkesbury and in an area which extended as far south as Wiltshire.


William Sanders, 1635, license to sell tobacco in Tollesbury and Salcott, Essex L4.

The Open Swimming Pool in Tollesbury, Essex

[WHB: Note that Tollesbury is a seacoast town at the mouth of the Thames River, East of London.]

From the Smugglers Britain website: www.smuggling.co.uk

Like so many of the ports and landing-points on the Blackwater, Tollesbury supports a wealth of legends about smuggling. For a long time, the nearest custom house was Maldon, and the staff there were greatly overworked, so the Tollesbury smugglers would have been free to come and go pretty much as they pleased. When the authorities became more vigilant, contraband was simply thrown overboard at one of the many creeks and inlets punctuating the estuary, to be collected when the coast was clear.

There was always a chance, of course, that goods hidden in this way would fall into the hands of ‘honest’ men, and be turned in to the authorities. In 1819 one such man, Daniel London, was dredging (probably for shellfish) and hauled up a large number of tubs of spirits that had been sunken in Old Hall Creek. He spent most of the night loading the tubs into his boat, and in the morning he sailed up to the Maldon custom house with 152 tubs. For somewhat suspect reasons, though, he overlooked 11 more, leaving them in Mill Creek, where they ‘were liable to be found by any other dredger, of which there were many near’.

When he got home a reception committee of smugglers was waiting for him, and not unnaturally wanted their property. Being reasonable men, they offered to pay him half of what the goods were worth, but Daniel foolishly declined. At this point the angry mob threatened to lynch him and his son, so the pair of them retreated indoors. When the Maldon comptroller of customs arrived, Daniel — now in fear of his life, no doubt — owned up to the other 11 tubs, and was promptly accused of smuggling and thrown into Chelmsford Gaol. In gaol, things went from bad to worse: the other prisoners assaulted him, and he eventually lost his boat, theGeorge and Anne.

The story is told [241] in letters and petitions to the customs authorities, and 170 years on it’s hard to unravel the truth. The authorities were evidently convinced that London was in league with the smugglers, and pointed out that he had a previous conviction for the offence. On the other hand, the unfortunate dredger was clearly not popular with the smugglers, either!

Old Hall Creek is now heavily silted, but at one time there were wharfs there, as rotting timbers and skeletal boats in the mud testify. When business was thriving, there was a waterside pub that had huge cellars for storage of contraband — the sea-wall hid the free-traders from view as they unloaded. The pub was long ago converted to houses as the torrent of thirsty smugglers turned — like the waters in the creek — to a trickle.

In 1779 the windows of the pub would have commanded a good view of a large cutter landing goods at one of the wharfs, and perhaps one of the drinkers was the customs officer from Tollesbury, Edward Abbot. He intercepted a labourer called William Tabor, who was carrying tea and gin which had been unloaded from the boat. Tabor tried to negotiate freedom from prosecution, but this was refused and the labourer was convicted and fined. To get his own back, Tabor accused Abbot of embezzling some of the seized goods (which the revenue man quite likely did). His attempt to discredit the officer failed, however, and when asked to appear before the local collector of customs, the smuggler lost his nerve.

Modern Tollesbury is a working waterfront. Pleasure boats are today much in evidence, but there are some working vessels too, and four beautifully restored traditional yacht stores form the centre-piece of the waterfront, reminding the visitor of the long-standing links with the sea.

Also from the website above:


TL9513 red map button , 4m E of Tiptree on minor roads

The twin villages of Salcott and Virley also feature in Melhalah: the marriage of the principal characters Mehalah and Elijah Rebow takes place in the now-ruined church at Virley. The churches are also steeped in legend associating them with non-fictional smugglers; from the church towers, signals could be flashed to Tiptree Heath, and to Beacon Hill on the other side of the Blackwater estuary. There was always a good turn-out for the service at Virley because the congregation was swelled by local smugglers who aimed to keep an eye on the contraband they had concealed in various parts of the church [236!

According to one local fable, villagers found an customs boat floating off nearby Sunken Island with a crew of corpses — all 22 men had their throats cut from ear to ear. The bodies were buried in the local graveyard, with the hull of their up-turned boat over the graves.


The following is from the Immigrant List of thev Merchant Bonaventure to Virginia 1635

Then follows a list of those who went to St. Domingo, after which, "These under written are to be transported to Virginea imbarqued in ye Merchant bonaventure James Ricroft Master bound thither have taken ye oath of allegeance. You will perceive an apparent repetition of the anme of Ricahrd Champion. I can only say it so so in the original.

Mary Saunders, 26, included in the above list of passengers.


John Sanders, 1 April 1636, Thomas Cornwallis and John, both gentlemen, appear in the case of Orchard against Baltimore and others.

Joseph Saunders, 6 June 1636, agrees to freight the ship Flower de Luce for 8 months for a voyage to Virginia. Origin Weymouth.


By late 1637 a second depression [of tobacco prices] began and lasted until the mid- forties . . . Pecquet, Cato Journal, ibid.


Joseph Saunders, 25 July 1637, He and William Smith undertook the freight of the Flower de Luce from Thomas Leddoze. Ship was in a very rotten state and ill fitted for the voyage which lasted from July 1, 1637 to June 22, 1637.

There are quite a few admiralty papers that list court cases that only list the last name of Saunders. In reading them they appear to be related to this Joseph and the same ship and the Bonnie Bess which went aground at Long Island, Virginia in rough weather. Two great boat loads of goods weighing 5 tons apiece were taken out of to be carried ashore but both were lost in the attempt. Freight on board the two ships were valued at L2400 to Saunders’ account.

Whilst the two ships were at Virginia, it was rumored that Weston had received instructions from Saunders to dispose of the Bonnie Bess: Weston offered to sell it to Leonard Calvert, the Governor of Maryland, but, in fact, eventually sold it to Richard Orchard who had arrived in Virginia a month after the ship had been driven aground.

Suits were commenced in the Quarter Court at James Town by planters and relatives of merchants who had died on board, for restitution of goods seized by Weston on the outward voyage. Details of Flower de Luce: On 11 October 1638 it left Newfoundland for Virginia, Master John White. On October 21 it arrived at Point Comfort. Later on 2 November it arrived at James Town.

On 11 April 1639 the homeward voyage was started. However, the day before the ship set sail for Point Comfort, White and Samuel Leddoye, the purser, on behalf of the owners of the vessel, protested against Nicholas Stourfield, George Grace and Simon Hake, freighters of the said ship, at the terms of schedule made over to them. Grace and Hake returned to Weymouth in the Flower de Luce. Leddoye and White, protesting at their failure to load the ship in time, went to James Town where their complaint was lodged in the suits of the Quarter Court.

Joseph Sanders, 27 August 1637, a letter to Sir Henry Marten, knight, judge of the Admiralty. Enclose a petition from Joseph Sanders, merchant, who about a year ago sent to Virginia goods to a value of L3500.0.0 and also 83 servants. All Sanders’ factors died during the journey and one Hugh Weston then took unlawfully possession of all the goods. Weston has now been arrested and will appear before the court of Admiralty. The privy council recommends this case into the special attendance of this court.

A letter to the Governor and Council of Virginia, 27 August 1637. Contents same as the previous letter. Order to investigate in whose hands the goods now are and where the servants now are and take steps for the recovery of same. The following postscript follows which is canceled “for as much as at the signing here of we are informed that the said Weston is arrested here, where upon we have recommended the business to your especial care of the judge of the Admiralty: you are therefore to seize and cause to remayne in safety and forth-coming such goods and servants as you shall find to belong to the petitioner and to make return of this letter to the said Judge of the Admiralty here”.

From Coldham, Peter Wilson English Adventurers and Emigrants, 1609-1660: Abstracts of Examinations in the High Court of Admiralty with Reference to Colonial America, p. 84.

“Thomas Leddoze of Weymouth, Dorset, merchant, aged 51. He was part owner of the Flower de Luce which he freighted to Saunders. The tobacco she brought back from Virginia was damaged by water and the deponent and others have brought suit in this court (Vol. 54)

From Coldham, P. W., p. 92

Robert Redhead of Rochester, Kent, marine aged 30. He was boatswain’s mate of HMS Swiftsure which in March 1637/8 intercepted the Truelove of London, Mr Isaac Watlington, which was loaded with Virginia tobacco, and ordered her to London. While the Truelove was off Margate, Francis Lathbury came out to her in a boat and returned with Watlington to the town after which the ship sailed for Holland on 16 March 1637/8 (Vol.53).

Matthew Saunders, 3 August 1637, Matthew of Whitechapel, yeoman in the case of Leddoye vs. Saunders.

George Saunders, 14 November 1637, merchant consignment of 4000 lbs. of Virginia tobacco.


Posted in COLONIAL TRADE, SAUNDERS | Comments Off

Ancestral Families and the English-Colonial Trade (1612-1632)

[WHB notes: In a previous post, Saunders in Gloucestershire and Bristol in Late Medieval Times, I presented, among alternative hypotheses, the possibility that the offices awarded to Thomas Saunders, heir to the large Charlwood Estate in Surrey, by King Henry IV (Bolingbroke), in 1400, and subsequently, led to the establishment of a branch of the Saunders family in Bristol.

The following timeline of activities of the Saunders' and other ancestral families in the kind of mercantile trade that involved high levels of capital formation. I think that that patterns can be discerned that suggest that branches of the Saunders family, rather likely in concert with one another, were engaged in shipping between England the Continent, and, with the opening of the English colonies in the 17th century, in transatlantic trade.

Ultimately, this focused on the often lucrative tobacco trade and was impacted by the events that led up to the English Civil War and its aftermath.

I will continue this timeline in later posts.]

The following organizes genealogical information about ancestral families in Virginia and North Carolina. Among other sources, it relies importantly on the work of the Virginia Family Records Project, in particular the information published by Rod Sanders on 8 July 2007.

Rod Sanders’ citations are interspersed with selected quotations from Dr Gary M. Pecquet’s important article “BRITISH MERCANTILISM AND CROP CONTROLS IN THE TOBACCO COLONIES: A STUDY OF RENT-SEEKING COSTS”,  from information posted elsewhere on the vikingsandvirginians.com website  and by other information available through on-line research.


“The initial boom that resulted from the introduction of tobacco in 1612 was followed by an increase in immigration and a tobacco depression by 1629–33.”  Pequet, Cato Institute.


Lieutenant Saunders, 18 June 1609, Lieutenant Saunders is coming over to England – if he is given command of men in the Virginia voyage he will venture himself and L50 in the venture. Sidney papers.


In 1619, a London merchant with Gloucestershire ties, John Stratford, bought land around Winchcombe in Gloucestershire to plant tobacco. In the same year, Parliament passed a law prohibiting the cultivation of tobacco in England.


“The king [WHB- King James I of England] captured monopoly revenues in the form of customs duties imposed on the tobacco trade, and English merchants gained exclusive access to most of the world tobacco crop. All colonial tobacco was to be shipped to England, and after paying customs the English merchants acquired the exclusive use of the crop. The scheme also prohibited tobacco cultivation in England (to prevent tax-free chiseling). . .

Despite royal proclamations, as early as 1620, prohibiting the cultivation of tobacco in England, Englishmen widely evaded the ban. Many considered the prohibition of raising tobacco to be an unwarranted restriction on personal liberty, and the crown lacked the administrative machinery to enforce the tobacco-growing ban in England.

Pecquet, p. 469.


Patrick Sanders, 15 January 1624/5, deposition on behalf of John Woodall vs. Sir Thomas Merry. Involving cargo of the Lions Claw alias Merchant Bonaventure and Hopewell.

[WHB - The following note notes are from a Wikipedia article]:

John Woodall (1570–1643) was an English military surgeonParacelsian chemist, businessman, linguist and diplomat. He made a fortune through the stocking of medical chests for the East India Company and later the armed forces of England. He is remembered for his authorship of The Surgeon’s Mate which was the standard text to advise ships surgeons on medical treatments while at sea and contains an advanced view on the treatment of scurvy. . .

Woodall’s career then progressed rapidly with election as a surgeon at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital in 1616 where he was a colleague of Sir William Harvey. He was promoted to examiner in the Barber-Surgeons Company in 1626, to warden in 1627 and then master in 1633.

He suffered a setback, however, in 1625 when he served a writ on Sir Thomas Merry, a servant of the King who owed Woodall money. For his effrontery to royal privilege, the Lord Steward had Woodall imprisoned. He was briefly released to supervise surgeon’s chests for the next fleet at the request of the East India Company, but was then jailed once more. He was only freed when he issued a contrite apology.

The cover of Woodall’s medical treatise

The following year of 1626 the Privy Council decided to pay the Barber-Surgeons Company fixed allowances to furnish medical chests for both the army and navy, and Woodall was appointed to supervise this scheme in addition to his long-standing similar commitment to the East India Company.

He was eventually dismissed by the East India Company in 1635 for financial reasons, but retained a monopoly on supplying the Company’s medical chests until he died in 1643, aged 73.


An illicit tobacco growing trade evolved in Gloucestershire, which sometimes was apparently sold as “Virginia tobacco”. In 1631, Charles I’s administration moved against the Gloucestershire tobacco crop, the King’s privy council demanding that the sheriffs of Gloucestershire and Worcestershire take action, creating a backlash of support for Parliament in its battle against the monarchy.


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Connections between Ancestral Families and Wiltshire County, England

I have pulled together various citations related to possible ancestors residing in or emigrating from 16th or 17th century Wiltshire County, England. The following questions seem to be appropriate:

1) Is there a parallel between the involvement of persons surnamed Saunders or otherwise likely related through the DNA research discussed elsewhere on this website and “religious dissent”?

2) Is there evidence of involvement of ancestors in the tobacco trade both in Wiltshire and in Virginia?

3) Is there evidence that the impact of the English Civil War on Wiltshire and surrounding counties influenced the emigration to the American colonies?



From Founders of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, by Sarah Saunders Smith (beginning at page 17): From the Colonial Records also from deeds and wills, we find the family of Sanders who came to America were from Wiltshire County, England, as also were many of the organizers of the Plymouth Colony. . . There were fifteen distinct parishes of Wiltshire.   From Wiltshire Magazine (date unknown):

Wiltshire is pre-eminently connected with the early history 
of tobacco, not only by reason of the tobacco-manufactory at 
Amesbury, whose fame was once greater than any other in the 
land, but also because the best collection of the earliest pipes 
known to the world is to be found in the Blackmore museum at 
Salisbury. It may be necessary therefore to give some slight 
account of the history of tobacco for the benefit of those who 
have read nothing more about it than has already been pre- 
sented to them in the pages of this magazine.

Amesbury was famous for its tobacco pipe manufacture in the 16th century.


From the History of Parliament:

RICHARD TRACY elected to parliament, representing the constituency of Wootton Bassett.

The following excerpt is from the History of Parliament:

“The borough of Wootton Bassett, for which Tracy was returned to the Parliament of 1529, was to be represented by many men from across the nearby border, but his home near Winchcomb was rather distant for him to be accounted a local man: the same was true of his fellow-Member, Walter Winston, who lived at Randwick near Stroud.

Like two other Wiltshire boroughs, Devizes and Marlborough, Wootton Bassett formed part of the jointure of successive queens consort and this court connexion probably explains the appearance among its Members of men who had little, if any, personal connexion with it. In the case of Tracy, the names of possible patrons include those of Sir Edward Baynton, a local magnate who besides securing his own election for the shire may have been influential in other boroughs, and Sir John Brydges, who was returned for Gloucestershire and whose marriage connexions with Tracy probably assisted his election. If religious sympathy entered into the matter,

Baynton’s incipient Protestantism would have made him a natural patron for the son of so doughty a reformist as William Tracy.

The following excerpt is from the Victoria County History; Page, William (editor), A History of the County of Gloucester Volume 2, 1907.

“In 1535 Cromwell appointed Anthony Saunders, the curate of Winchcombe, to read to the monks of Winchcombe and preach in the parish. L. and P. Hen. VIII, ix, No. 747. On 2 November he complained to Cromwell of the abbot of Hayles—

“I have small favour and assistance amongst Pharasaical papists. The Abbot of Hayles has hired a great Golyas, a subtle Dun’s man, yea a great clerk, as he sayeth, a bachelor of divinity of Oxford to catch me in my sermons.

He added that this preacher rather maintained than spoke against the usurped power of the bishop of Rome. However, Abbot Stephen was not openly hostile to Cromwell. On 28 January, 1536, he wrote asking him to dispense with some of the new injunctions which were most galling to the religious. L. and P. Hen. VIII, ix, No. 747 (p.192). Since Cromwell had visited the house, he wrote—

“The number of my brethren is sore decayed. I have buried three, two are sore sick, one had licence to depart, and I have three in Oxford at divinity. I beg that I may take in more to help the choir.

“On 18 June he told Cromwell that in accordance with his wish he had granted the farm of Longborough to Robert Hopper. (L. and P. Hen. VIII, x, p. 1163)

“In 1538 commissioners were appointed in every county to destroy the shrines. Latimer, bishop of Worcester, reported to Cromwell that the relic of the Holy Blood of Hayles seemed, after examination, to be ‘an unctuous gum and a compound of many things.’ (fn. 56) It was dispatched to London, and on 24 November Hilsey, bishop of Rochester, preached at Paul’s Cross, and there showed the Blood of Hayles, affirming it to be ‘honey clarified and coloured with saffron, as had been evidently proved before the king and his council.’ (fn. 57) Abbot Stephen wrote to Cromwell praying that he might destroy the empty shrine, ‘lest it should minister occasion for stumbling to the weak.’ (fn. 58)

“On 24 December, 1539, the abbot and twenty-one monks surrendered the monastery. (fn. 59) Dr. London and his fellow-commissioners reported to Cromwell that they found— the father and all his brethren very honest and conformable persons, and the house clearly out of debt. . . . The father had his house and grounds so well furnished with jewels, plate, stuff, corn, cattle, and the woods also so well saved, as though he had looked for no alteration of his house. (fn. 60)

“A pension of £100 a year, with the manorhouse of Coscomb, was assigned to the abbot; the prior and one monk got £8; the rest received pensions varying from £7 to £1 6s. 8d. a year, and two monks were given vicarages. (fn. 61) Wages were paid to seventy servants of the household. (fn. 62)

“In 1535 the clear yearly value of the property of Hayles amounted to £357 7s. 8½d. (fn. 63) The possessions of the monastery included the manors of Hayles, Pinnockshire, Nether Swell, Wormington, Coscomb, Longborough; rents in the towns of Gloucester and Winchcombe; lands and rents in Didbrook, Challingworth, and Farmcote, in Gloucestershire; the manor of Rodbourne in Wiltshire; pastures at Heathend in Worcestershire; and the rectories of Hagley in Suffolk, Northley in Oxfordshire, St. Breage and St. Paul in Cornwall, Rodbourne in Wiltshire, Hayles, Didbrook, Longborough, and Toddington in Gloucestershire.”


“During the organizaiton of the Plymouth Colony we find Sir Edwin Sandys, Biashop of York and afterward Lord Mayor of London. His ancestral estates were at Wiltshire County. Many records of his family are to be found at Salisbury, the county town. We quote from history and these records the short account of George Sanders, brother of Sir Edwin. “George Sanders was born 1577. After passing some time at Oxford in 1610 he travelled over Europe to Turkey; visited Palestine and Egupt. He published his travels at Oxford 1615, and they recewived great attention. The first poetical production in Angel’s Amerian Legislature, was published by him, while acting in capacity of Secretary of the Virginia Colony and in the midst of the confusion which followed the massacre of 1622.


St Edmunds Parish, Salisbury, Wiltshire:

John Sanders and Grace Burrowe, lie.


Banks Topographical Dictionary of English Immigrants
1620-1650 states there was a John Sanders of Easton
in Wiltshire that emigrated between 1620-1650

Wiltshire Record Office states thata John Sanders
came from Downton and emigrated 1620-1650


Thomas Sanders, 22 May 1633, imported 200 pounds if tobacco on the ship Lyon. [WHB - Although this record does not specify Wiltshire, I believe the possible relationship with the following record should be considered.]


Arthur Sanders, 1634, license to sell tobacco in Salisbury, Wiltshire

From www.cotswold.info:

“It was during the 16th and early 17th centuries that the area around Winchcombewas extremely poor , it was during this period that a family named Tracy established themselves at Toddington, the eldest son Sir John Tracy became involved with a John Stratford who was related to him by marriage, they set up a business together to grow tobacco in the area, with plantations at Toddington and Bishops Cleeve. “Tobacco was widely grown on the Cotswolds, the Vale of Tewkesbury and in an area which extended as far south as Wiltshire.


From an account of the voyage of the Confidence:

CONFIDENCE, of London, two hundred tons, John Gibson, Master. She sailed from Southampton the last of April,` by vertue of the Lord Treasurers warrant of the 11th of April,1638. 1  JOHN SANDERS,  25 of Langford, Wilts, Salisbury, husbandman; Mrs. Sarah Sanders, John Cole 40,  Roger Eastman 15 servant; Richard Blake 16 servant; William Cottle 12 servant; Robert King 24 servant                                                      

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