Grace Robins (Neale)
|Also Known As:||"Grace O'Neil", "Grace (Neale) Waters", "Robins", "Robbins"|
|Birthplace:||Brackley, Northamptonshire,, England|
|Death:||Died in Elizabeth City, Accormack County, Virginia|
Daughter of Edmund Neale and Elizabeth Neale
|Managed by:||Private User|
About Grace Robins
Legend claims she was an Irish lady of noble birth, who fled to America to escape a repugnant forced marriage. It's a pretty legend, but it isn't true. Hers is still quite a romantic and dramatic story without the extraneous embroidery.
Grace (1) Neale1
- F, b. circa 1603, d. before 2 March 1682/83
- Father Edmund Neale2 b. c 1575, d. b 11 Feb 1610/11
- Mother Elizabeth (-----)2 b. c 1580
- Descendants of Obedience Robins (First Families of Virginia)
- Descendants of Edward Waters (Ancient Planter)
Grace was born circa 1603 at Brackley, Northamptonshire, England.
- 3 Grace [Neale] came to Virginia in the Diana in 1618 [with Sir George Yeardley].
- 4 She married Lt. Edward (1) Waters, son of William Waters and Alice Canon, in 1621 at Virginia.
- 5 Grace was living in February 1625 at Elizabeth City, VA. She was aged 21 and living with Lieut. Edward Waters at the time of the muster..
- 5 As of 1634,her married name was Robins.
- 6 She married Col. Obedience Robins (I), son of Richard Robins and Dorothy Goodman, in 1634 [at England]. He was identified in two N'hamp patents in Mar 1643 as a total of 950 acres. The first of the patents, for 500 acres, divided in 2 parcels, was due by order of the court dated 22 Mar 1638/9 as also for the transportation of 10 persons, among them Robins himself, Mrs. Grace Robins and her daughter Margaret Waters. From these claims for headrights, it would appear that he [made a trip to England and while there had] married Grace O'Neil, whose first husband Edward Waters, was buried there on 22 Aug 1630..
- 6 Grace died before 2 March 1682/83 at Northampton Co, VA. It was on this date that Capt. John Robins, on behalf of himself, William Cowdry who married mary Robins, and the children of Dorothy Andrews, was granted administration on his father's estate, lately left by their deceased mother, mother-in-law and grandmother..7
- Family 1
- Lt. Edward (1) Waters b. c 1584, d. Aug 1630
- She married Lt. Edward (1) Waters, son of William Waters and Alice Canon, in 1621 at Virginia.5
- Lt. Col. William (2) Waters+ b. 1623, d. 1689
- Margaret (3) Waters b. c 1625
- Family 2
- Col. Obedience Robins (I) b. b 26 Apr 1601, d. b 30 Dec 1662
She married Col. Obedience Robins (I), son of Richard Robins and Dorothy Goodman, in 1634 at England. He was identified in two N'hamp patents in Mar 1643 as a total of 950 acres. The first of the patents, for 500 acres, divided in 2 parcels, was due by order of the court dated 22 Mar 1638/9 as also for the transportation of 10 persons, among them Robins himself, Mrs. Grace Robins and her daughter Margaret Waters. 6
- Dorothea (4) Robins+ b. c 1635, d. b 2 Mar 1682/83
- Maj. John (2) Robins+ b. 6 Jul 1636, d. b 28 May 1709
- Obedience (3) Robins (II) b. c 1638, d. b 19 Mar 1682/83
- Mary (5) Robins+ b. c 1642, d. b 1691
- Frances (6) Robins+ b. c 1644
- [S888] John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5, p. 702 (O'Neal-Robins Family - Footnote #2).
- [S1955] C.R.V. 'Rob' Hall, , Ancestors of Thomas Hearn Fooks V, 9 Oct 2011, p. 58.
- [S888] John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5, p. 702 (O'Neal-Robins Family - Footnote #3).
- [S940] John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5, p. 473 (Waters Family).
- [S888] John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5, p. 702 (O'Neil-Robins Family).
- [S888] John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5, p. 702 (O'Neal-Robins Family).
- [S888] John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5, p. 703 (O'Neal-Robins Family).
There is not much doubt that Grace Neale was the granddaughter of John Neale and Grace Butler, but some uncertainty as to exactly which one of their sons was her father. In this respect the Visitations are not only no help, they are a positive hindrance.
(Sir) George Yeardley made several trips back and forth between England and Virginia, and it isn't always easy to track his movements. He may have returned on the "Diana" - he's not on her passenger list, but it is very incomplete - or on an earlier or later ship.
It is utterly unclear whether Edward Waters took his family back to England with him on that final visit, or whether he went alone and left Grace in Virginia to take care of his family as best she might. Since she had very young children, the latter is considerably more likely. As for the headright system, it was easily - and quite frequently - abused.
The ancestry of Grace Neale can be traced through the Miles Files http://espl-genealogy.org/MilesFiles/index.htm , based at Eastern Shore Public Library, Accomac, VA. They are usually quite reliable about genealogical matters relating to the lower Eastern Shore.
Grace and Edward were "missing, believed dead" after the 1622 Opechancanough raid. They turned up alive and well, having been held for ransom by the not-as-hostile Nansemond tribe (the story goes that they escaped, but they may have actually been ransomed along with various other colonists).
Obedience ROBINS [I] b 16 Apr 1600 Long Buckby, Northampton County, England d 1662 Northampton Co VA, came to VA 1620 m 1634 m the widow Grace [Neale] WATERS b 1604 d 1682, came to VA 1618. Obedience [I] & Grace were the parents of five
I see you've gotten hold of the old myth about "Lady Grace O'Neil". Sadly, it IS a myth and has been exploded. "Arthur O'Neil" and "Grace O'Hara" were not her parents - their dates have been jiggered to support the myth. They were actually her contemporaries, and had two sons and NO daughters. This has all been verified from Anglo-Irish records.
Grace was a Neale, from Brackley, Northamptonshire, England, and there's not a trace of Irish in her background going back many generations. Neither are there any titles - the Neales were untitled gentry and squirearchy. They have a coat of arms (a nice one, red and black with a silver lion), but that's it.
Grace was certainly the granddaughter of James Neale and Grace Butler, but by exactly which of their sons is not incontrovertibly established. The most likely candidate is Edmund Neale, who married an Elizabeth (birth name unknown) and they both died relatively young.
John Neale, found in association with the Waterses and Robinses on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, was her brother. James Neale of Maryland was her cousin (no, he wasn't an O'Neil either, and his background has picked up some pretty heavy embroidery).
Grace Robins's Timeline
Blount Point, Virginia Colony
May 7, 1636
Cherrystone, Northampton, Virginia
July 18, 1637
Cherrystone, Northampton, Virginia
Cherrystone, Northampton, Virginia
Cherrystone, VA, USA
Cape Charles, Northampton County, Virginia