11 December 2011

Savages and Moons

Mary "Mollie" Savage Honnoll

This day in family history:

11 Dec 1678: John Savage dies in Savages Neck, Northampton, Virginia. He was born in Accomac, Virginia, in 1624, son of Thomas Savage, one of the Jamestown settlers. Accomac is in Accomack County, just so you Virginians don’t assume I don’t know how to spell. Apparently the K is negotiable. Jamestown was a marshy, swampy, hostile environment for the English settlers; never mind that "History is Fun" stuff. Thomas came over in 1608 at the age of 14 on a ship called the "John and Francis," married Hannah Tyng there at 27 and died there at 39. John Savage confounds the family migration trend by moving east from the Eastern Shore across the Chesapeake to a tiny point of land close to the end of the Delmarva Peninsula. I’ve been there, on the way to the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, though with no idea of the family connection at the time, alas. John lived on the bay side of the peninsula. His son Hamilton stayed there, too. His grandson Levin struck out for the Appalachians in the next century.  I wonder if John was a waterman on the Bay. That would make me happy. Just the idea that there is a place called “Savages Neck” is great. Keep reading for more Savages.

11 Dec 1710: Keeses, as promised. I hardly know what to make of this. Among his children, John Keese may have had two sons, William and Shadrach. Or he may have just had one, William Shadrach. At least one of them died this day in Providence, Rhode Island. The records are conflicting. In some, William was born 10 years before Shadrach (26 Oct 1685 vs. 05 Nov 1695). William was 25; Shadrach was 15. Whoever, or whichever, someone died this day and did so 10 years after their father almost to the day, and 10 years before their mother. There is no other information that I can find. Some young man died far too young, that’s certain. This must have been devastating for their family. Their brother, Jonathan, lived to 1771 and married Mary Bowne. He is my 6th great-grandfather. Jonathan left Providence for New York sometime before 1719. I wonder if there was too much tragedy in Providence for him. His son was the first Elijah Keese in this line. One genealogy line insists that William (not Shadrach) married in 1743 after dying in 1710, but I don’t think my family is that talented. Always check your references.

11 Dec 1726: Stephen Moon dies in St. Peter Parish, New Kent, Virginia. St. Peter’s Parish is still in service today and is the site, among other notable history moments, of George and Martha Washington’s wedding. Stephen died five years before Martha was born, but the families undoubtedly knew each other, it being a small population at that time. He was born there in 1681 and was another one who stayed where he started. You’d think that the ancestors would stay put in such a lovely part of the world, but you would be mistaken.  His son Jacob headed west, from the coastal plain east of Richmond to the Appalachian foothills northeast of Lynchburg. My ancestors seem to have liked the Appalachians very much once they got there. The Moons are descended from Capt. John Moon, who came over in the early 17th century from Hampshire, England. The line follows from Martha Patsy Moon through the Martins to Mary Savage, descendant of John (above) and mother of Nancy Ellinor Honnoll Walker, the quiltmaker. See? More Savages. 

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