05 December 2011

William Sharp(e)

Meeting House Hill, Delaware, 2002; an early Quaker meeting house in the New World

Today in the family history project (a continuing series):
06 Dec 1525: William Sharpe dies at the age of 67 in Islington, a London neighborhood which he was also born, back in 1458, date unknown. The name of his spouse is also unknown, as are the names of his parents. William Sharp just springs up spontaneously in Islington, which is not uncommon in the older records. I'm finding that there is no such thing as pinpoint accuracy when you get past the first three or four generations as you move forward onto the past. Spellings and dates change, stories mutate over time, and hidden information comes into the light. If my information about William is correct, he is my 14th great-grandfather, and he spent his life in a neighborhood originally named Giseldone by the Saxons in 1005. His descendants spelled Sharp in a number of creative ways, which makes the genealogy work so interesting (sigh). If the chart is correct--a big if--his descendants include the Bownes, who were among the very first Quakers, the Winthrops of New England, and the Keeses--remember the Keeses?--who wound up all over Texas and Brazil. The Bowne connection is particularly meaningful to me. As the saying goes, interesting if true, and maybe proof that there are deeper connections to the past than we think. 

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