While I await my DNA results, I continue to follow the paper trail, finding new and exciting branches in my family tree. For example, I have discovered who my mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother was. Her name was Mary Jenkinson, and finding her in 17th Century England reminds me of an episode of Arrested Development – the one where Michael discovered the “Wee Britain” neighborhood of Orange County. I wasn’t expecting my Irish ancestors to have English ancestors, with some who were French Huguenots before they became English subjects.
In my “Wee Britain,” I find a neighborhood filled with Huguenots, Parliamentarians, Nonconformists, and Anglican clerics.
There are also some problem areas (at least as far as I’m concerned) – places where I’m not entirely convinced that the data is correct. There are a couple of critical areas that are unsourced. Yet, I will assume for now that the information is correct and that whoever made these connections did so based on accurate information.
To see the big picture, let’s back up to my 3rd great-grandmother, Mary Emily Knox, a 4th great-granddaughter of Mary Jenkinson. She was the daughter of John Knox, Esq., and Sophia Ann Rogers. In a previous post, I discussed the Knox family (see Knox, Knox, Who’s There?). Now let’s explore Mary Emily’s maternal line, starting with her mother, Sophia Anne Rogers, and her grandfather, George Rogers (1736-1812).
For this line, I have traced back as far as Mary Emily’s great-grandfather, the Rev. George Augustus Rogers (1695-1769) – if the information is correct, this would be my sixth great-grandfather. George Augustus Rogers was born on December 27, 1695, in Lisburn, Antrim, Northern Ireland. He married Ann Hanna on December 9, 1725, in Glenavy, Antrim, Northern Ireland. He died on July 24, 1769, in Clough, Kilkenny, Ireland, at 73. He was a Curate at several parishes in Northern Ireland in the mid-1700s, including Glenavy near Antrim, and he was the Rector of Donaghy from 1763 to 1769.
According to “Ireland, Select Births and Baptisms, 1620-1911”, Ann Rogers, daughter of George Rogers, was born May 30, 1773, First Presbyterian Church Belfast, Antrim, Ireland.
There are conflicting pedigrees regarding the Rogers line. I have seen a hand-drawn pedigree titled Rogers pedigree and dated 1858, reportedly showing the descendants of George Rogers, a son George Rogers, and a grandson named George Rogers who served in the British Army and died in Ohio. The chart shows Anne Rogers (not Sophia Anne), and this Anne Rogers is shown as married to a John Owens of Lisburn. However, another pedigree shows George’s daughter Rachael as married to a John Owens.
Sophia Anne Rogers’ death notice which appears in the Belfast Newsletter (July 6, 1849) states that Sophia Anne Rogers was the daughter of a Rev. George Rogers: “On the 5th inst., Sophia Anne, relict of John Knox, Esq. of Maze House, in the County of Down, and last surviving daughter of the late Rev. George Rogers, rector of Clonallen and Chancellor of the diocese of Dromore.“
According to several family trees, Maria (Mary) Benson was the wife of Rev. George Rogers and the mother of Sophia Anne Rogers. This is another area that is lacking in sources.
Rev. Trevor Benson, Archdeacon of Down, was the father of Mary Benson and a great grandfather of Mary Emily Knox. Her great-grandmother was Jane Hutchinson.
According to one researcher: “[Trevor’s] first wife, Jane, was a daughter of Samuel Hutchinson and sister of the Rt Rev Samuel Hutchinson, Bishop of Killala. She bore him two sons, Samuel and Hill, and three daughters.” Presumably, Maria (or Mary) was one of those three daughters.
Trevor Benson has a Wikipedia article in his name. The article consists of two lines:
Trevor Benson (1710-1782) was an Anglican priest in Ireland during the 18th Century.
Benson was born in County Down and educated at Trinity College, Dublin. He was Prebendary of Kilroot in Lisburn Cathedral from 1763 to 1768; and Archdeacon of Down from 1768 until his death.
Trevor’s father was the Rev. Edward Benson (1680-1741), Rector of Downpatrick, and Prebend of Down. Edward is my 7th great-grandfather.
Jane Hutchinson was the wife of Trevor Benson and mother of Maria Benson. We have Jane’s baptism record. The record places her christening at Carsington, Derbyshire, England. It states:
“Jane, daughter of Mr. Samuel Hutchinson and Mary his wife was baptized January 16.“
The entry is for the year 1709 A.D. Mary’s last name is presumably Jenkinson. However, I am not seeing any sources for her surname.
Sometimes information comes from strange places. Take, for example, the following found in a church news bulletin from 1927. The publication presents the life story of a man who was the church’s rector 200 years earlier. The man’s name was Hugh Tinsdale, and the bulletin states that he married a sister of Trevor Benson, Archdeacon of Down and that their father was the Rev. Edward Benson, Prebendary of St. Andrews (Down). Their mother was Jane, daughter of the Rev. John Winder, Prebendary of Kilroot & Connor.
This introduces the Winder (Windor?) family with Jane Winder, the mother of Trevor Benson and wife of the Rev. Edward Benson.
Jane Winder, my 7th great-grandmother, was born in Lisburn, Northern Ireland, in 1682 and died at Downpatrick in 1760. Her father, the Rev. John Winder (1658-1733), was a son of Peter Windor, a cornet from Dearham, Cumbria, England. Her mother was Jane Lyndon Doane of Carrickfergus, County Antrim.
The dictionary defines a prebendary as a member of the Roman Catholic or Anglican clergy, a form of canon with a role in administering a cathedral or collegiate church. An archdeacon is a senior priest who is in charge of other priests.
John Winder was reportedly close friends with Jonathan Swift, the Irish satirist, and Anglican cleric. It is written that Winder purchased his prebend from Swift when the latter went to England. Also, he may have been at the Battle of the Boyne with William III. I know there is more to this story that I need to research.
Jane Hutchinson was Mary Emily Knox’s great-grandmother. Jane’s paternal grandmother was Mary Tallents. Mary’s brother Francis Tallents was described as a nonconformist Presbyterian minister, an ejected divine, and a nonconformist divine of considerable eminence and learning. He has his own Wikipedia article located here. The article tells us that “Francis Tallents was of partly Huguenot ancestry. He was the eldest son of Philip Tallents, whose own father, a Frenchman, accompanied Francis Leke (MP), a Derbyshire Protestant politician and soldier, to England after saving his life.”
Now I can add Huguenots and Roundheads to my family tree. (Sometimes, I imagine my family tree looking like one of those casual Christmas trees with a mishmash of different ornament styles hanging from its boughs.)
Finally, we come to Ellena Dob (1596-1645), my 9th great grandmother and great-great-great-great grandmother of Mary Emily Knox. I do not know much about her. She was the wife of Philip Tallents and mother of both Francis and Mary Tallents. She was born and died in North Wingfield, Derbyshire, England. There is some irony surrounding her last name. The family line that is at focus here, Dob, stems from my maternal grandmother. My maternal grandfather’s last name was Dobbs. Wouldn’t it be wild if my maternal grandparents turned out to be distant cousins?