Peregrine Smith, alleged descendant of Pocahontas and John Smith (c.1610 - 1651) MP

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Birthplace: Norwich, Norfolk, England
Death: Died in Wethersfield, Hartford, Connecticut
Managed by: Erica Howton, (c)
Last Updated:

About Peregrine Smith, alleged descendant of Pocahontas and John Smith

From: http://genforum.genealogy.com/hiatt/messages/1491.html

Re: Peregrine Smith Controversy by Terri Hiatt

When I started tracing my Mother's side of the family she told me a story that had been passed down to her. We were descended from Capt. John Smith and Pocahontas. Indeed I found a Capt. John Smith, but he lived in the 1830's, not 1607. On my Dad's side I found alot of people saying we were descended from John Smith and Pocahontas. I didn't see any identified sources, no documents, records, or books to substantiate this claim, so I decided to try and find some. When I googled Peregrine Smith the only reference I found was in connection to him being from Hiett-Smith descendents saying that Peregrine was the father of their ancestor and mine, William Smith, with no sources noted. Here's what I found:

Capt. John Smith: Baptized at St. Helens Church 9 Jan 1580. Son of George Smith and Alice Rickard. His family were poor tenants who lived on land owned by Peregrine Bertie, the 13th Baron Baron Willoughby de Eresby. After Smith's father died his mother remarried and Peregrine Bertie looked after young Smith. Bertie later hired him as an attendant (clerk) to Bertie on a trip to France. Being bored after a year or so Smith was sent back to Lincolnshire. Being adventurous, Smith then spent several years traveling, engaging in battles, etc. before going to Jamestown, VA in June 1607. He returned to England 4 Oct 1609. After more adventures to New England he was in London where he died in 1631. Pocahontas: Born in a village about 16 miles from Jamestown in ca. 1595 to Chief of the Powatans. She was about 10 or 11 when Smith arrived, 12 or 13 when he left. She was in 1608-1609 a welcome guest to the English settlers, bringing food from her father. In 1613 she was taken and held for ransom. In 1614 she married a commoner, John Rolfe, a tobacco farmer. They had a son, Thomas and in 1618 and they left for England. She died on the return trip to Jamestown 21 Mar 1617. Rolfe went back to Jamestown without Thomas who returned many years later to receive his inheritance of thousands of acres from his grandfather. Peregrine Smith: Born in Jamestown in 1608. Son of John Smith and Pocahontas. There are no death records, no records of marriage or children, no records of where he lived in England. Some suggest that he married Mary Bertie in 1640. Lady Mary Bertie: Born in Lincolnshire in 1615 to Robert Bertie, the second son of Peregrine Bertie, (Smith's landlord). She married Dr. John Hewitt in 1640. He was a Catholic priest and chaplain to Bertie, the Earl of Lindsay. He was loyal to Charles II and lost his head on Tower Hill, London in May 1658. She secondly married Sir Abaraham Shipman, Governor of Chester. Since she was from a very aristocratic family there are records to prove these marriages, which make it impossible that she married Peregrine Smith. John Hiett: Born 27 April 1676 in Butleigh, Somerset, England. He married Mary Smith, daughter of William Smith (this we know from his will of 1706 in Maryland). The Street Parish Records show that John Hiett and William Smith were on the list of Overseers of the Poor, Butleigh Court from 1681-1699 when thay both disappear from the records. One record lists John Hiett, late of Butleigh and now in Pennsylania (where the Hiett and Smith families show up in the early 1700 records) and also prove there is no German connection to Jost Hite, and that the Hietts were in Somerset, England for many years before leaving for America, so they weren't in Ireland and son George was not born there. Wm. Smith had a certificate from Glastonbury, Somerset ( 4 miles from Butleigh) to Philadelphia 14 Jun 1699. We don't know the dates of Mary or William's birth as the Vicar of Butleigh didn't keep any records of bmd's for the that time period. Also on the Overseers list are Smiths George, John, Abell, and Thomas. Could they have been brothers, sons, or a father? Only George Smith shows up after 1700. Questions about Peregrine Smith: Pocahontas would have been about 13 when he was born,that's possible, but what happened to him after that? No records to show that she took him to England when he would have been 8 in 1616. He supposedly married Lady Mary Bertie...records show that can't be correct. Peregrine is not listed in any British records or in any of the oral traditions passed down from her tribe. He was never mentioned in any of John Smith's books about Virginia or in his will. Neither John nor Thomas Rolfe mention him. I have found no records at all to show that he ever existed. Many of the historians of Smith and Pocahontas don't believe there even was a romantic relationship between them, she thought of him more as a father figure. When she saw him again in England she called him Father. She was 11 and he was 27 when they first met. In the" Full Text of Capt. John Smith" it is suggested that he wasn't all that interested in women, that's possible, since he remained a bachelor all his life. The Smith-Pocahontas contoversy remains a subject for further analysis. There are many versions with many different outcomes but there are none that I found that include Peregrine Smith in them. Therefore, until someone can find any records to verify that he did exist I have think that this story is a myth (every family has at least one), not o mention that probably most families have a John Smith in them. It is most likely the most common name in the US. So, I can't say that he was the father of my ancestor William Smith. From what I've seen of the DNA results from my branch of the Hiatt family there appears to be no Indian DNA found. I guess the only way to prove it would be a DNA link between Thomas Rolfe's descendants and William Smith or John Hiett's descendants.

I did find another interesting story (with records) that may have helped to contribute to or confuse the Smith and Pocahontas legend if you have Hiatt and West ancestors. My ancestors of the Jamestown era are Raleigh Croshaw, George Percy, Thomas West, and John West. Col. John West was married to Ursula (Unity) Croshaw in 1654. She was the daughter of Raleigh Croshaw. John and Unity had several children, then John committed udultery by living with and having children with Cockacoeske, the Indian Pamunkey Queen (who was related to Pocahontas). They even had a son named John West. He wouldn't be in our Hiatt bloodline because we are from the children he had with Unity Croshaw.

Please reply if you find any evidence that I missed about Peregrine Smith. There is a huge amount of information out there. I would really like to know who was the father of William Smith.

Sources: 1. butleigh. org under Butleigh People for Hiett, Smith 2. en.wikisource.org/wiki/Bertie,_Richard_(DNB00) Info on Richard Bertie 3. zipworld.com.au/~nbdds/home/smythwinchester.htm Info on Peregrine Bertie, John Smith, and Pocahontas. 4. rotherhamweb.co.uk/h/jhewett.htm About Dr. John Hewitt 5. archive.org/stream/captainjohnsmith00braduoft/captainjohnsmith00braduoft_d Full Text of Capt. John Smith 6. womenshistory.about.com/od/mythsofwomenshistory/a/pocahontas.htm About Pocahontas 7.encyclopediavirginia.org/Smith_John_bap_1580-1631 John Smith 8. cappyzeb.freeyellow.com/ancestors/pages/hiatt/jspoc/smith-poc.htm John Smith, Pocahontas 9.1609chronology.blogspot.co/2009/04/god-wants-you-to-colonize-virginia.html 10. teenslibrarypoint.org/queene_of_pomonkey Cockacoeske and John West 10. Book "Berk's Peerage, Baronetage, and Knightage" 107th ed. 3 vol. Wilmington,Del 2003

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[Hiatt22.FTW]

It is a possibility that Mary could have been the younger sister to Peregr ine Bertie, who wa s the son of Lord Bertie for whom George Smith worked a nd whose son, Peregrine, that John wou ld have named his son.

I found the following comments in Hiatt/Hiett/Hyatt Genealogy written by L arry Anderson:

"In the March 1986 Hiatt Family Newsletter, we included a part of a tradi tion that was follo wed by Dr. Joseph Copeland. He passed away before h is work was published. I submit this a s a tradition and a theory and per sonally believe it has merit. I was also told by my grandf ather th at he had been told that one of his grandfathers was Captain John Smith a nd an India n maiden. I have done a great deal of research and have fou nd very convincing evidence tha t leads credence to this story. I will n ot include it here (meaning in the Hiatt/Hiett/Hyat t Genealogy) but wi ll develop the story and information for anyone wishing to further stu dy a nd research this connection. I would suggest you not rule it out unt il you see more of the f acts and story. I have found this story pervasi ve in family traditions so far removed that i t is not possible for th em to be shared in recent history. Some of these families separate i n t he early 1700's, but retain the same story.

Dr. Joseph Copeland gave his lineage as follows:

George Smith, b. abt 1540 married Alice Rickard; they were parents of Cap t. John Smith, b. ab t 1579. John Smith and Pocahontas (Matoaka), daught er of WahanSonacock, Chief of Powhatan, b orn abt 1558 and Winganuske, Que en of Powhatan, had a child named Peregrine Smith. (Capt. Sm ith and Poca hontas were not legally married - She was later legally married to John Ro lfe an d Indian history holds that she was married to an Indian Brave pri or to marrying Rolfe.) Per egrine Smith was named after Peregrine Berti e, Lord of Bertie and son, friend of John Smith , Peregrine Bertie, Jr. S on of Peregrine Smith was William Smith, b. abt 1643, married Grac e Jermi n, their daughter Mary Smith married John Hiatt, their son George Hiatt ma rried Marth a Wakefield, and on down to Dr. Copeland through descendan ts of George and Martha Wakefield H iatt.

Dr. Joseph Copeland was a birthright Quaker. He was a retired profess or at the time he corre sponded with Larry Anderson. He had told Larry th at he had carried on the work his grandmoth er and mother had been doing f or the past 100 years. He was planning to publish his researc h at that t ime. He became ill and was never able to complete his task. Larry Anders on state s: "I have enough evidence based upon my own research that I c an repeat that this story ha s credit, it is far more than mere speculatio n. This in interesting and should be of interes t to everyone." -------------------- [http://cappyzeb.freeyellow.com/ancestors/pages/hiatt/jspoc/smith-poc.htm]

[http://www.gurganus.org/ourfamily/descend.cfm?fid=153509]

"Children of John Smith And Pocahontas?

It is believed that they had two children. This is unproved and are from traditions of the Hiatt, Smith and other families.

  1. Peregrine SMITH B: 1608

Jamestown, , Va, America M: Abt 1640

  1. Mary Smith"

Note: This portion of the record is given to family tradition,

but is unproven at this time. Historical record does not show John Smith and Pocahontas to have been romantically involved or to have had a child. However, tradition has it that Peregrine Smith was the son of the famous Capt. John Smith and an Indian maiden, who some feel was Pocahontas.==

***See more notes on profiles of Capt. John Smith and Mataoka AKA Pocahontas***=

view all 22

Peregrine Smith, alleged descendant of Pocahontas and John Smith's Timeline

1610
1610
Norwich, Norfolk, England
1640
1640
Age 30
Jamestown,,Virginia,USA
1651
1651
Age 41
Glastonbury, Somerset, England, (Present UK)
1651
Age 41
Wethersfield, Hartford, Connecticut
1655
1655
Age 41
Glastonbury, Somerset, , England
1657
1657
Age 41
Glastonbury, Somerset, , England
1949
January 26, 1949
Age 41
January 26, 1949
Age 41
January 26, 1949
Age 41
January 26, 1949
Age 41