Honour Rolfe (1593 - 1650) MP

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Birthplace: Downton, Wiltshire, England, United Kingdom
Death: Died in Charleston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, USA
Managed by: Tiffany Beesley Brock
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Honour Rolfe

There is a record of an oral will by Honor at Newbury, Mass., which confirms her death date and progeny. Thomas Blanchard was her son-in-law, Anna's first husband, who died the very same month (was there a plague?).

Honor married Henry ROLFE, son of John ROLFE and Honur, on 28 May 1621 in Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England. (Henry ROLFE was born on 5 Sep 1585 in Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England and died on 1 Mar 1643 in Newbury, Essex Co., Massachusetts

Honour Rolfe was born abt 1598 in Hamptonworth, Wiltshire, England and died 19 December 1650 in Charleston, Middlesex, MA. Honour died at the home of her daughter Ann Blanchard. She married her cousin Henry Rolfe, son of John Rolfe of Wiltshire, on May 26, 1631 in Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England.

Henry Rolfe's father (John Rolfe) was the brother of Honour Rolfe's maternal grandfather as Honor's mother Agnes also married a Rolfe (Richard, b. ca. 1567) who may or may not have been directly related to her.

Henry and Honour emigrated to New England in 1635 where they settled in Newburyport Mass, in that part of the town that, in 1764, separated as the town of Newbury. It is not known on which vessel they sailed.

Children of Henry Rolfe and Honour Rolfe

  • Anna Rolfe
  • Hannah Rolfe
  • John Rolfe
  • Benjamin Rolfe

Links to additional material:

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Henry ROLFE was born before 5 Sep 1585 in Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England.5,181 He was baptized on 5 Sep 1585 in Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England.181,15302 He signed a will on 15 Mar 1642 in Newbury, Essex, Massachusetts.181 (Estate of Henry Roffe of Newbury

"The 15th 12th month 1642 I desire to comend my soule into the hands of the lord Jesus Christ, I desire my goods may be equally divided to my wife & all my children, only my sonne John Roffe must have the howse & land more then all the rest of my children and that their porcons shalbe divided when they be 21 yeares of age if they marry not before In case my wife dye or marry then the goods shalbe divided; otherwise not till my eldest childe come to be 21 yeares of age But still to remayne in their mothers hands with the rest till that either of them are 21 yeares of age or marry. If any of my children dye then that porcon shalbe equally divided betweene my wife & the rest of my children I doe give vnto my wife one great brasse pott and one great brasse pann, and a great brasse posnett and a chafing dish and five pewter platters I doe give unto my Kinsman Thomas whittear a swarme of bees. I desire my brother John Roffe and my Cosen John Saunders of Sallisbery and william Mondy of Newberry to oversee my will & order it to my desire & accordinge to my will."

Henry Roffe Witness: Thomas Hale, Thomas Cowllman, william Mose. Proved 28:1:1643 Ipswich Deeds, vol. 1, leaf 2.

Inventory taken 1:1:1642, by John Woodbridg, Henry Short and Richard Knight: howse & land, £30; Six kowes, £30; foure oxen, £24; one bull & one steere, 3 yeare old, £7. 10s.; three beasts, two years old, £8; two beasts, one yeare old, £2. 10s.; three Calves, £1. 4s.; three hoggs, £1. 4s.; Bees, £7. 10s.; haye, £4; Soyle, £1; Cart, Slead & 3 Yoaks, £1. 6s.; within the howse: one fetherbed & flockbed, £3. 10s.; Six fether pillowes, 18s.; 4 Coverleds, £2; 5 blanketts, £1. 10s; 3 paier of Sheets, £1. 8s.; 2li. and a halfe of bee wax, 2s. 6d.; bowlster Case & pillow & napkins, 10s.; porke, £2. 7s.; butter & Cheese, 12s.; barrells & butte[r] Cherne & other lumb., 18s.; Pewter, £1. 7s. 6d.; Brasse, £3. 13s.; a Brasse pott, £1; iron potts, £1. 6s.; A chafing dish & a posnet, 5s.; 12 bushells of indian corne, £2. 2s.; 9 bushells of wheate, £2. 6d.; 2 bushells of pease, 9s.; hogsheads & howes & other lumber, 16s.; in apparrell, stockins & shoes, £3; muskett & fowling peeces & 2 Swords & bandileers, £1. 19s.; working Tooles & lanthorne, 15s.; bookes, £1; spining wheeles, 10s.; a chest & chaiers & other lumb., 16s.; harrow tines, 10s.; total £153. 8s. 6d. Ipswich Deeds, vol. 1, leaf 3.

Source: Printed "Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts; 1635 - 1681," In three volumes, The Essex Institute; Salem, MA; 1916, Vol. 1, Pg. 21.) He died on 1 Mar 1643 in Newbury, Berkshire, England.181,13484 Parents: John ROLFE and Honor [ROLFE].

Spouse: Honor ROLFE. Henry ROLFE and Honor ROLFE were married on 28 May 1621 in Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England.15303 Doubtless an error in the Parish Registers of Whiteparish, Wiltshire, 1559-1655 which says John Rolfe and Honor Rolfe. Children were: Anna ROLFE, Hannah ROLFE, John ROLFE, Benjamin ROLFE.

Source: Estate of Henry Roffe of Newbury 15 Mar 1642 , Source: Printed "Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts; 1635 - 1681," In three volumes, The Essex Institute; Salem, MA; 1916, Vol. 1, Pg. 21.)

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NOTES: Henry Rolfe's father (John Rolfe, b. ca. 1650) was the brother of Honor Rolfe's maternal grandfather (believe it or not), as Honor's mother Agnes also married a Rolfe (Richard, b. ca. 1567) who may or may not have been directly related to her.

     Henry and family are said to have emigrated to New England with Henry's brother John and a sister, though apparently not on the very same ship.  John and family (described differently in two published transcriptions I'm looking at presently) sailed on the Confidence in 1638.  There is no mention of Henry in either of the transcriptions; presumably he and his family came earlier, since son Benjamin was born on this side in that year.  Henry is listed as owning land in Newbury in 1642.
     Through the kindness of distant cousin Jonathan Rolfe, descendant of Henry's brother John, I have two more transcriptions for the Confidence voyage of 1638, indicating that John (aged 50) sailed with his wife "Ann" and their daughter Hester, plus an 18-year-old servant named Whittle or Thomas Wittle.  The ship sailed from Southampton on April 24, 1638, arriving in Boston, under Master John Gibson (or Jobson), carrying 200 tons.
     Another distant cousin, Marie Thurman-Vann, adds interesting side-notes to this story.  She points out  that servant Thomas Wittle is part of a long-standing family relationship with the Rolfes.  Honor Rolfe's great grandfather Henry Rolfe, in his 1558 will, leaves items to "Alis Whytehere, my servant," while her husband's father, John Rolfe, in his 1625 will, leaves money to "Richard Whiteer," who was actually married to Mary Rolfe, sister of the Henry and John in this generation.  (Marrying a servant was not at all uncommon in Shakespeare's time, and of course did not alter Thomas Wittle's servant status, who--according to Marie--was the son of Richard and Mary and thus servant to his own uncle.  The coincidence of the same servant family on both sides of the Henry-Honor marriage confirms that their two Rolfe lines are fairly closely related.)  Marie continues:  "Thomas [Wittle]'s descendant was John Greenleaf Whittier, who wrote a poem ["Pentucket"] about his kinsman, Samuel Rolfe, who went to Harvard and became a minister and was killed with an axe thrown to his head standing in front of his home in Massachusetts."  (According to Whittier's own notes on the poem, it was Benjamin Rolfe, and he was killed by a shot through his front door.)

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HENRY ROLFE (John, Henry) was born 05 September 1585 in Melchett Park, Downton, Wiltshire England, and died 01 March 1642/43 in Newbury, Essex, MA. He married HONOUR ROLFE on 26 May 1631 in Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England. She was born abt 1598 in Hamptonworth, Wiltshire, England and died 19 December 1650 in Charleston, Middlesex, MA. Henry and Honour immigrated to New England in 1635 where they settled in Newburyport Mass, in that part of the town that, in 1764, separated as the town of Newbury. In 1642 Henry was registered as a "proprietor of Lands." He was not recorded as a Freeman, probably because of his early death (1643). It is not known on which vessel they sailed to New England. They have often been erroneously noted as having sailed as passengers on the "Confidence" as did his brother John Rolfe and family and his nephew, Thomas Whittier, ancestor of the famous poet John Greenleaf Whittier. Henry's brother John (b 1558 in Melchett Pk. Wiltshire, England d. 1664) sailed on the Confidence in 1638, but there is no mention of Henry and his family. Henry and Honour were first cousins, once removed. Henry's father was the brother of Honour's maternal grandfather. Her mother Agnes Rolfe married Richard Rolfe (b. abt 1567) who may or may not have been related. Agnes Rolfe was born in 1573 and Agnes' father was the brother of our John Rolfe of 1550. Honour died at the home of her daughter Ann Blanchard. The will of Richard Rolfe (1598) Honour's father, mentions Henry and Thomas Rof as his brothers-in-law, William Sanders as his brother (actually a half-brother), his wife Agnes, his daughter Agnes, his daughter Honner Rof, John Rofe as his brother-in-law and John Rofe as his "onkele" (probably meaning his wife's uncle). From Images of Pioneers of Massachusetts: Will dated 15 (12) 1642I desire my goods may be equally divided to my wife & all my children, only my sonne John Roffe must have the howse & land morethen all the rest of my children and that their porcons shalbe divided when they be 21 yeares of age if they marry not before. In case my wife dye or marry then the goods shalbe divided; otherwise not till my eldest childe come to be 21 years of age. But still to remayne in their mothers hands with the rest till that either of them are 21 years of age or marry. If any of my children dye then that porcon shalbe equally divided betweene my wife & rest of my children. I doe give unto my wife one great brasse pott and one great brasse pann, and a great brasse posnett and a chafing dish and five pewter platters I doe give unto my Kinsman Thomas Whittear a swarme of bees. I desire my brother John Roffe and my Cosen John Saunders of Sallisbery and William Mondy of Newberry to oversee my will & order it to my desire & according to my will. Children of HENRY ROLFE and HONOUR ROLFE: 1. Anna Rolfe 2. Hannah Rolfe 3. John Rolfe * 4. Benjamin Rolfe JOHN ROLFE (Henry, John, Henry) was born 10 May 1634, Cambridge, Suffolk, MA and died 01 October 1681 in Newbury, Essex, MA. He married MARY SCULLARD 4 Dec 1656 in Newbury, Essex, MA. She was born 1625 in Wiltshire, England and died in Cambridge, Middlesex, MA. John died at Newbury in the home of his brother Benjamin having made his will on the same day, which was witnessed by Sarah Hale and Apphia Rolfe. Of his 10 children, all the sons, John, Samuel, Joseph, Benjamin, Henry and Moses were residents of Woodbridge NJ, where John, Benjamin and Moses married and had children. John had purchased land in Woodbridge NJ prior to his death. It was shortly after his death that the family, with the exception of the daughter Rebecca, relocated to Woodbridge. The sons of John Jr. changed the spelling of their surname to Rolph. John one of the first settlers of Newbury and a proprietor of Salisbury was admitted freeman in 1639 and died 8 Feb 1663. His last wife, Mary Scullard, he married. 4 Dec 1634 (The First 20 Settlers of New England). Will of John Rolfe in Essex County Probate Records, Vol.1, p 21-2 leaves L10 to John Rofe my brothers son and unto his two daughters Marie and Rebecca Rofe five pounds.On 1670 Sept 10, Jho. Roffe of Nantucket ack. receipt from Jno. Biship Sr of Nantucket of "forty od pounds" in behalf of his wife Mary Rolfe, formerly Mary Sculler, it being her share.given unto her by her father, Samuell Sculler. The L5 given her by her grandfather Richard Kent included in the value.” Mary Scullard is the daughter of Samuel Scullard (b. 1610 England d. April 1647 Newbury) and Rebecca Kent b. 1612 Newbury m. 1641 d. 1684 Newbury). It was after the birth of their 3rd child and while John was away from Newbury that Mary became involved in a scandal with a Dr. Henry Greenland, a newcomer to Newbury. He was found guild of adultery and ordered out of Newbury. He went first to Kittery Maine from where he was forced to leave. He then relocated to Piscataway NJ where he and his family settled. Shortly after John's return to Newbury, He, Mary and their daughters, Mary and Rebecca relocated to Nantucket where their next five children were born. George Cooke built the original Cooke’s mill in 1637. Cooke returned to England where he became a Captain in Cromwell’s army. He died in England. Meanwhile the mill descended into ruin. In 1670 George Cooke daughter Mary, living in England, sold her father’s 600 acre farm at Cambridge Farm (now Lexington) as well as 20 acres of land in Menotomy (now Arlington) to John Rolfe of Nantucket. Rolfe erected an entirely new water powered mill on the old site. After John died in 1681, Mary sold 1/5th of Cooke Farm (abt 120 acres). She and her son Moses laid out a second Mill Brook water mill system of pond, dam, mill and millrace at what is now Mill Street in Arlington. In 1704 Mary’s son in law, William Cutter, built a dam 15ft high near his home on the present Mill Street, raising the level of the pond and erecting a sawmill. In 1714 Moses sold 130 acres of Cooke’s Farm to John Cutter (Wm Cutters son). In 1718 Moses sold 100 acres of Cooke’s Farm to William Cutter. Children of JOHN ROLFE and MARY SCULLARD: 1. Mary Rolfe 2. Mary Rolfe 3. Rebecca Rolfe 4. John Rolfe 5. Samuel Rolfe 6. Sarah Rolfe 7. Joseph Rolfe 8. Hannah Rolfe 9. Benjamin Rolfe 10. Esther Rolfe 11. Henry Rolfe 12. Moses Rolfe * (Now here is a place of confusion. Some people believe that Moses Rolfe married Mary Hale the daughter of Samuel Hale and Sara Ilsley, others say it is Mary Higgins, daughter of Jediah Higgins and Mary Newbold. Most of the later researchers tend to go with Mary Higgins due to the documentation). MOSES ROLFE (John, Henry, John, Henry) b. 14 October 1682, Cambridge, Middlesex MA; d. 14 April 1746 in Woodbridge, Somerset NJ. He married MARY HIGGINS on 04 June 1702. She was born 24 January 1679 in Eastham, Barnstable, MA and died 5 August 1796 in Amwell, Hunterdon NJ. She was the daughter of Jediah Higgins (b. 5 Mar 1656 d. 12 May 1684) and Mary Newbold (b. 23 May 1661 in York Eng, d. 23 April 1715 Somerset NJ). There is still confusion as to whether he married Marry Higgins or Mary Hale, daughter of Samuel Hale and Sarah Isley. Moses was accepted as freeholder in Woodbridge NJ in right of his father-in-law, Samuel Hale, by vote of the town meeting of freeholders and inhabitants, January 12, 1712 (lib. A. p 309). The family, with the exception of his sister Rebecca, moved to Woodbridge NJ in 1685. Moses was active in the civil affairs of the community from 1713 to 1721, being a Judge of Middlesex and Somerset Counties (From The Early Rolfe Settlers of New England). From New Jersey Family Histories #1, 1600s-1800s, pg 618: Moses Rolfe (Rolph) was born perhaps 1680 and died 1746 when on 24 April his widow, Mary Rolfe, was bonded, with Samuel Rolfe, as the administratrix of the estate of Moses Rolfe Esq. of Summerset County. Katherine Chapin Higgins in Richard Higgins (1918) shows (p69) that Moses Rolph married 4 June 1702 Mary Higgins, born 1684, a daughter of Zerah Higgins and Elizabeth Oliver. The will of Thomas Martin of Woodbridge dated 20 Nov 1715 makes his kinsman, Moses Rolph, his executor. Thomas Martin had married 28 April 1683 Rebecca Higgins, sister of Zerah Higgins. In 1712 Moses Rolph had been "accepted as a freeholder in Woodbridge in right of his father-in-law, Samuel Hale." which had led some to identify his wife as Mary Hale, born Woodbridge 28 Nov 1678, daughter of Samuel and Sarah (Ilsley) Hale, but the term "son-in-law" at that time could mean "step-son" indicating Samuel Hale had probably married Moses Rolfe's mother as his third wife. Moses Rolfe and Mary Higgins had eleven children born at Woodbridge between 1703 and 1723. Children of MOSES ROLFE and MARY HIGGINS: (Birth dates given are actually baptism dates) 1. Samuel Rolfe * 2. Elizabeth Rolfe 3. Esther Rolfe 4. Apphia Rolfe 5. Richard Rolfe 6. Nathaniel Rolfe 7. Richard Rolfe 8. Robert Rolfe 9. Sarah Rolfe 10. Henry Rolfe 11. Jonathan Rolfe

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Honour Rolfe (Rolfe)'s Timeline

1578
1578
Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England, United Kingdom
1593
1593
Downton, Wiltshire, England, United Kingdom
1593
Whitesparrish, Wiltshire, Eng
1593
Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England
1593
Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England
1593
Whitesparrish, Wiltshire, Eng
1621
May 28, 1621
Age 28
1626
1626
Age 33
Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England, United Kingdom
1629
1629
Age 36
Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England
1634
May 10, 1634
Age 41
Whiteparish, Wiltshire, England