Title: Who Are the Parents of (Stephen) Giles Letcher Born abt 1710 in Northern Ireland (Wife = Hannah Hughes)
To: Genealogy Posting Forum:Letcher, Giles, Harding, Perkins, and Hughes Families
Author: Howard Brion Letcher
Subject: (Stephen) Giles Letcher born abt 1710 in Northern Ireland (Revised and Updated Version)
Date: October 23, 2008
Howard Brion Letcher:My direct ancestors are (Stephen) Giles Letcher b. ABT 1710 and Hannah Hughes b. ABT 1715-20.And if it can be supported with documentation, then my next generation earlier direct ancestors would be (Stephen) Giles Letcher I b. ABT 1685 and (Elizabeth) Perkins b. ABT 1685-95 with undocumented information that Giles II above and Hannah were both born in Henrico county.Therefore, for reference purposes throughout this work, I will refer to Giles Letcher I as the one known to be born abt 1710 allegedly in Northern Ireland and Giles I who would have been born abt 1685 will be referred to as his father.
The family story (passed down through my own family in the below form) continues in many published versions which is basically as follows:Giles Letcher II was born in Northern Ireland (but whose family removed from Cornwall and/or Wales and/or Devon to Northern Ireland during the Cromwellian period which is the correct version--and they were neither Irish, nor Huguenots, nor Scotch/Irish as some accounts erroneously relate).Giles II and Hannah Hughes married in Richmond, Va abt 1739; that Hannah was "a lady of fortune" descended from the ancient Welsh family of Hughes; that Giles II's mother was a "Miss Giles" of either Gileston or St. Giles Court, a member of the Welsh Giles family; and finally that Giles Letcher II was a direct descendant of the ancient Leche family then living in Berkshire or Cheshire or Derbyshire (whose existence in Britain can be recorded back to the 5th century and remains one of the oldest continual landed--not royal—gentry families in Britain by acquisition/inheritance of the ancient Carden estate through the female line resulting from the Leche marriage to the Carden heiress before 1350).The Leche Chatsworth estate (a sub-family of the Carden-Leche family) was sold to the Duke of Devonshire (Lord William Cavendish) about 1600 who was married to Bess of Hardwicke (aside from Elizabeth I, the richest and most powerful woman in England resulting from her four successively more resourceful and more affluent marriages--opportunistic, perhaps, as has been noted historically--causing considerable and grave consternation to Queen Elizabeth) whose stepfather was Ralph Leche, son of Sir Francis Leche.Bess’ sister, Alice Hardwicke, married their stepbrother, Francis Leche (or Ralph’s nephew—I’ve seen both accounts), at which time the Chatsworth sale was executed and the Chatsworth Leche family line became extant with no male heirs from this union; the Carden Leche family still exists today under John Leche XIX (pursuant to dates and circumstances, I tend to believe that my ancestor would probably have to be either John Leche XII or John Leche XIII during which ownership, Carden was confiscated by either Cromwell or the crown and, moreover, at which time in 1643 I believe John XII and/or John Leche XIII removed to Northern Ireland with the Cavaliers and Quakers and his relatives until Carden was restored to him 30-40 years later about the time that Giles I should have been born in 1685 which was also about the time of the beginning of the reign of William and Mary).The coat of arms was granted to John Leche II who was surgeon to Edward III (Note:recent published papers that were in the possession of Bess of Hardwicke as Countess of Shrewsbury reference Gyles Leche as the bailiff to the first Lord Fitzwilliam c. 1500).Most portions of the main theme of the above "family legends", for the most part, have been republished over and over but most recently by the conservators of General Jeb Stuart's Letcher birthplace, Laurel Hill plantation in Mount Airy, with the cooperation of the Virginia Historical Society (I think they are called) or the William and Mary College Quarterly Genealogical Society (if I am naming that correctly).Resulting from my most recent research, two distinct Leche/Leech(e)/Leach(e) families (at least all five variations were used interchangeably by this family even in the same document) are candidates for Giles Letcher II’s father as follows:as stated above, the Carden family (Cheshire) removed to Northern Ireland before the Restoration since they were royalists; another branch, the Shipley branch (Derbyshire) manored at Heanor also maintained property and staff interests in that same area Northern Ireland area of Dublin.At least one son of Sir William Leche of Shipley (name of the Derbyshire manor), Sir Philip Lech, was on the staff of the Earl of Kildare (Fitzgerald) following the death of Philip’s father whose will was executed abt 1676 at which time Philip and his brothers were minors—probably 16 years of age.I have been unable to determine any children from him other than his son Philip and have come to an impasse with this family as a result.The following is my email to a Shipley Leche researcher:i made a small inroad just a little while ago.in o'laughlin's "the book of irish families, great & small", i finally found that the leche/leech/leeche family lived in kippure and cloonconra.as late as 1890, the leche/leech family was still commuting from kippure manor to cheshire.so, that still confuses the issue of the shipley and carden families.i think that both families retained interests in ireland because the original john letcher during reign of edward III was given castle warin (warren) in ireland which is somehow related to that "la leche" gibberish that clutters up the googling process for the leche family.
i was unable to copy from the book but here is some of the text that i handwrote:"families of the name of leech in ireland are generally of scottish origins.one branch of the name is found settled in co. mayo, and they were originally from cheshire.the name is also found in co. wicklow subsequently.some of the name may be of irish extraction, due to translation of irish surnames into english sounding names.the leech family of cloonconra is found in the irish book of arms as is the leech family "late of kippure".the birth index of 1890 finds the family centered in dublin."
i found that john henry leech of hurdcott house, salisbury lived in kippure manour, kilbride, dublin and he was the eldest son of john leech of gorse hall, cheshire.
i will let you know what i find in my mayo googling.
ps--the family tree for the irish leeches is identical to the leche/leech/leach etc. except that the entire face of the shield is superimposed by what looks to be three gourd-looking fruit on a single stem--very odd.
In essence, the Leech family of interest in the information above settled in this area around 1660-70 and was neither from Scotland nor indigenous to Ireland but, rather, claimed relation to the Carden Leche family in Cheshire according to the author—none of my research capabilites enabled me to determine who was their ancestor or even if, coincidentally, it could have been the Shipley Leche’s descendants of Sir Phillip who were known to have property interests there; according to British National Archive documents, correspondence ofthe Shipley Leche correspondence serves to indicate that the Shipley Leche male heirs were unconcerned about taking the helm of the Derbyshire manor and property and interests but were more concerned with the Irish property and interests, ignoring the Derbyshire properties so that they passed into the female line; I wonder if the same situation occurred with the Chatsworth property in Devon—this would allow for the Leches in Ireland to be descended from any of the three families—Chatsworth in Devonshire, Carden in Cheshire, or Shipley in Derbyshire.Another aspect to this saga is as follows:the earliest English historical records indicate that the Leche/Letcher/Leech/Leach family has been regarded as an occupational surname since the progenitor was identified in the practice of medicine from ancient times (as borne out by both the occupational name as derived from the word, "leech" along with the English historical records documenting the Leche family ancestry--in college, I even recall seeing a genealogical reference that attributed the direct ancestry of the Letcher family to Arthurian legendary Merlin combining Merlin's mysterious and magical healing powers with the Leche family's ancient existence in Cornwall and reinforced by the occupational Leche name.
My grandmother's personal story (married to my grandfather Julian Charles Letcher) derived directly and personally from his notable family in Alabama who have always been cognizant of their genealogy which has been published in books detailing state and national biographies of distinguished doctors and lawyers and diplomats (my great-uncle, Francis Marion Letcher, Jr., was the U.S. Foreign Trade Advisor, the first consul-general in Mexico, and consul-general in Belgium, Sweden, and Norway--his father, my g-grandfather Dr. Letcher, refused to educate FM, Jr. because he refused to study medicine with his other brothers who attended Tulane (Dr. Letcher’s and his brothers’ medical alma mater) And because Dr. Letcher, conversely, vehemently disdained Uncle Marion's desire to become a diplomat as frivolous, Uncle Marion paid for his own education by tutoring students at Sewaneewhich was headmastered by another relative at that time).My grandmother's story further related that five Letcher brothers came to Virginia and they were extremely large people with handspans twice the size of ordinary folk.I only wonder how strongly this legend was reinforced in her mind's eye based on her simple observation that some of my grandfather's brothers along with my g-grandfather, Dr. Francis Marion Letcher, along with some of his brothers were at least 6'9"; even Dr. Letcher's sister, Mary Elizabeth Letcher King (Bettie), who settled in Milam Co, Texas, was said to be approximately 6'; and his and Betty’s sister, Louisa Knott Letcher Hughes (Lulu) was so tall that her husband had a carriage tailored to accommodate the long stretch of her legs. Moreover, two of Elizabeth's sons--her oldest and her youngest, Judge Harry Tom King and Dr. Kenneth A. King, Jr., respectively--married two of my grandmother's sisters, Jephalona Hale and Annie Campbell Hale, in Jones Co, Texas, and that Julian Letcher, my grandfather, their first cousin, subsequently married a third Hale sister, my grandmother, Henry Clay Hale, Jr.).And according to my father, this union resulted from Julian's trip to Texas from Alabama in order to visit his Letcher-King cousins and Letcher uncle in Anson and Abilene on the heels of his own termination of his 10-year first marriage (all this was certainly complicated by the fact that my grandmother was his second wife--which marriage he also terminated--whereas his first wife was his Howard first- cousin--but that is not the exact point of my story here just yet).The "five sons" legend appears to be amazingly accurate but rather based on the four sons of Giles II and Hannah Letcher (some genealogies show a fifth son named Benjamin Letcher as the brother of Stephen Giles Letcher III, William, John, and James (sometimes erroneously stated as Joseph) but this is not substantiated ).
Now, I will work my way down from (Stephen) Giles Letcher II and Hannah Hughes to me (all these genealogies in my family are, of course, supported with DAR/SAR documentation) as follows:Their son was James C. (C = possibly Childers) Letcher who married an heiress, Melinda Key (Key family property was located next to Perkins and other Virginia settlers in Henrico, Isle of Wight, Albermarle, Goochland, and Charles City), and after his marriage, James removed to Edgefield, SC, in partnership with his father-in-law, Henry Key II (Henry's gg-grandfather, Thomas Key, was secretly married—as her Tower of London gaoler--to Lady Mary Grey, sister of Lady Jane Grey (and interestingly, a few other cousins and direct Key descendants of my Henry’s family are Ty Cobb, Francis Scott Key, and F. Scott Fitzgerald); and Henry Key I's father was Martin Key of Albermarle), who was a planter and resided there alongside many of the other Henrico county, Goochland, and Albermarle settlers who also came to Edgefield, South Carolina (a very fertile political, social, and economic environment providing more political notables within the colonies--governors and U.S. senators--than almost anywhere else in the colonies) and were family members (Melinda's--aka Millie--second husband was Isaac LeFevre with whom she also had issue); James' and Melinda's son was Giles V who married Agnes Talbert (or Talbot or Tolbert in early Virgina and whose family also was involved with the same Henrico, Albermarle, Goochland, and Charles City familes); Giles V's and Agnes'--aka Aggie--son was John David Letcher who married Anne Mathilda Bozeman (the Boasman, Perkins, Harding, Key, Talbot/Talbert families again all intermarried and are also all early Virginia colonists) and I participated in a DNA program on behalf of Bob Campbell whose Letcher uncle was tested against my DNA, thereby confirming that James and Melinda had another son, Stephen Tolbert Letcher--my father appears to have been knowledgeable about the possible existence of this second son via family lore regarding the abduction by the Creeks or Cherokees of these two sons as youths and their subsequent separation and then their release from the Indians during General Stonewall Jackson's punitive expeditions throughout the Indian territories; John David's and Anne's oldest son was Dr. Francis Marion Letcher who married an heiress of the Howard/Billingslea/Slatter Georgia plantation fortune, Louisa Claudia Caroline Howard Clanton (her first husband was Captain Nathaniel Holt Clanton whose brother was Alabama General James Holt Clanton, and she was a direct descendant of Matthew Arundell Howard b. 1609 through her father, Major William John Howard, and g-grandfather, Revolutionary Captain/Attorney/Judge Rhesa Howard of Augusta, who married Hannah Few, daughter of Colonel William Few and sister of Colonel William Few, Jr., signer of the U.S. Constitution and first U.S. Senator from Georgia; one of Rhesa’s brothers-in-law was James Few, the first Regulator casualty of the American Revolution who was married to Rhesa’s cousin, Mary Howard; another of Rhesa’s brothers-in-law/multiple first cousins was Colonel Greenberry Lee whose mother was Margaret Howard Lee, Rhesa’s aunt; Greenberry’ s wife was Elizabeth Few Lee Andrew Bush (Hannah’s sister) whose home in Montgomery descended through the family and subsequently became the “White House of the Confederacy” close to historical Shorter-Lomax House owned by Claudia Howard Letcher’s aunt, Caroline Billingslea Shorter Lomax who was married to Claudia’s two uncles: first, Reuben Shorter, brother of Alabama Governor John Gill Shorter; and second General Tennant Lomax), whose youngest son was Julian Charles (middle-named after his uncle Major Charles Gordon Howard) Letcher who married 2nd Henry Clay Hale, Jr. (direct descendant of Tidewater planter, John Clay II via her g-grandmother Mary Clay Thaxton Hale buried in Independence, Texas), my grandmother (her second husband was James Jefferson Boley), and whose son was my father John Benson (middle-named after an uncle, Dr. Benson Booth) Letcher and my aunt Clay Hale Letcher; Julian's first wife was his 1st cousin, Marion Ramsey (daughter of his mother’s sister, Alice Ware Howard Ramsey) and issues of this marriage were aunt Elizabeth Letcher and uncle Julian Lightfoot (middle-named after another relative, Dr. Lightfoot) Letcher, and his third wife was Louise Hamburger Pinckney with whom he lastly had my aunt Frances Louise Letcher).
I have not provided information on collateral families, but that is where the Perkins and Hughes family relationships become very complex and interesting.From the time of Giles II and Hannah, the Letcher family continued to marry Perkins and Hughes and Harding family members for at least 4-5 more generations.
Having researched the Harford Co, Maryland, Howard family from whom I am descended via Matthew Arundell Howard b. 1609, one of the earliest Maryland colonists,I was so surprised that all these families were Quakers and pursuant to the requirements of the Society of Friends could only marry within the Society (the Maryland Howard family went a step further and not only married within the society, but they typically only married among themselves generally marrying 1st cousins for the first 200 years in America --at least in my family--until sometime before 1799 when Rhesa and Hannah Few Howard both had converted to the Methodist faith; but moreso, they married double, triple, and quadruple first cousins who were even multiple-related second, third, fourth, and more cousins--unbelievably confusing).Additionally, when a Howard spouse/relative died, the survivor typically married the deceased spouse's brother or sister or another multiple cousin and because of these circumstances, attempting to separate and trace the issue of children (who usually all had the same names each generation) with each relative/spouse, was extremely complicated and as I already stated, my grandfather even married his Howard first/and more cousin (And, no, none of us have three arms and six fingers on each of our four hands or seven toes on each of our five feet)My point being that the Letcher, Giles, Harding, Perkins, Hughes research confirmed a repeat of similar circumstances for which I was again in another generational quagmire of Quaker intermarriages.
And renewing my research on the Letchers again about one and a half years ago, I was astonished to find that someone had posted on the internet not only Hannah Hughes Letcher's father and mother as Thomas Hughes Sr. and Sarah Perkins, but that (Stephen) Giles II's father was posted as (Stephen) Giles Letcher I b. ABT 1685 and his mother was posted as "Perkins" who I subsequently would be able to identify as Elizabeth Perkins b. ABT 1685-95 whose father was Nicholas Perkins IV and mother was Sarah Childers; of course, this would make Giles II and Hannah multiple Perkins and Harding cousinsThe only source I had for this new Giles Letcher I and Elizabeth Perkins information was Pat M. Stevens IV (his Mitchell family was descended from the Mitchell first-cousin paternal and maternal marriage of two grandchildren of Sarah Hannah Letcher, the only daughter of Giles II and Hannah Hughes) who I have been in touch with as of late but who is unable to locate his supporting material for Giles II's parentage or Giles II's and Hannah's birthplace as Henrico County.He reposted for me on a genealogical website to try to find the person who provided him this information.With no revealing information since that time, I have come to the firm conclusion that even if the possibility of Giles Letcher II’s mother as Elizabeth Perkins instead of a “Miss Giles” is true, then Giles I’s mother must, at least, have a Giles-surname mother based on the following assumption:although the first-name of Giles was not uncommon at this period and even before, there were many Giles first-names employed in the colonies mid-to-late 17th and 18th century andeven if many of them definitely had Giles forebears, others did not; however, in those subsequent generations of the Letcher family NOT descended from Mary Giles Harding Hughes (resulting from subsequent intermarriages among Perkins, Letchers, Hughes, and Hardings), the Letchers continued to use the name Giles as a middle name for their daughters which is clearly indicative of its commemoration of a surname instead ofa first-name derived from their ancestor, Giles Letcher and his mother’s family.
Hannah's father, Thomas Hughes Sr., had his children by Sarah Perkins, daughter of Nicholas Perkins III and Elizabeth Harding (with whom Nicholas III had all his children except Nicholas IV--Nicholas III and Mary Burton Perkins christened Nicholas IV on 11 October 1649 at Stepney St Dunsten in London during a trip there from America--whose mother was Mary Burton who married second, Richard Parke (Parker or even still Parke or Parke-Custis in the case of Martha Washington’s first husband and father of her only children).Thomas Sr.'s second wife was Mary Giles Harding, widow of Thomas Harding, probably Nicholas Perkins III’s brother-in-law or close relative (Nicholas III was married to Elizabeth Harding).I don't find that Thomas Hughes Sr. and Mary Giles Harding had any children; she would have been about 46 when Thomas Harding died in 1731.So, all her children appear to be with Thomas Harding and children of all of the Giles/Harding and Giles/Hughes and Hughes/Perkins marriages continued to marry Perkins and Hughes and Harding and Letcher children and descendants for 200 years--again, so very complicated.Additional information is that Nicholas III claimed headrights in 1650 (Aug 3) for Mary (Burton) Perkins, Wm Owens, and Richard Hughes (possibly Rees Hughes Sr., Thomas Hughes, Sr.’s grandfather).Upon Nicholas III's death in 1656, he left property both in Virginia and England which was claimed by Mary Burton Perkins Parke who had already married Richard Parke.Children of Thomas Harding and Mary Giles were as follows:1. William d. 1768 and first married Edith Cox with one daughter, Sarah, who married Thomas Pollard, and secondly married Sarah LaForce (daughter of Rene LaForce) and their oldest son was Giles Harding who married Amida Morris, and Thomas who married Jane Farrar, and William who married Obedience Hutchins and finally Rene with no data; 2. Thomas Jr; 3. Mary who married Edward Thomas; 4. Susannah b. 1722 who married first Charles Ellis, and second John Beckley; and 5. Bethenia b. 1719 d. after 1782 who married first Nicholas Perkins V and second John Chadwell.Again, the Harding marriages reinforce that they could all have been Giles Letcher II's half-first cousins (and even more) if his mother was, in fact, Mary Giles Letcher Harding Hughes; the Hutchins, Perkins, LaForces, Farrars, and others included all the families surrounding Giles II’s property or for whom he appeared as a witness, surveyor, or appraiser in the mid-18th century.It is also interesting to note that Giles II appears out of nowhere for the first time around 1739 which is coincidentally the approximate marriage date ascribed for him and Hannah Hughes--again for emphasis, Giles II literally appears OUT OF NOWHERE owning land in 1739.Also, Thomas Hughes Sr. b. 1685-90 and wife, Sarah Perkins, had the following issue:1. Thomas Jr. whose will was probated 1779 had 2 sons and 2 daughters--William b. 1743 who married Mary Ball; Moses b. 1745 who married Ellizabeth Ball; Mary married John Jude; and Rebekkah who married Lewis Ball; 2. Charles; 3. Stephen; and 4. Hannah Hughes married to Giles Letcher II.Both Thomas Hughes Sr. and Mary Giles Harding Hughes were alive in 1748 but she had died by 1769.Another fact I want to interject is that Nicholas Perkins IV was the Administrator for William Arrington aka Arlington (married either Melinda Key Letcher's aunt or sister and was, as I recall, a Revolutionary War General—he is also my g-grandmother, Caroline Howard Letcher’s gg-uncle).Stephen Giles Letcher III's son was General Benjamin Letcher.Also of note is that Ware, Ball, Darden, and other of these marriages indicate that the Washington and Jefferson families would be their cousins, a relationshipwhich can be extrapolated from present research information)note to author:that there is an indication that Hannah has been listed in some sources as daughter of james, sr; also giles II appears as witness with Robert Hughes so go back and see who is robert’s father or family………
So, the points at which I am stranded are as follows:Is Giles II's mother really Elizabeth Perkins or does his mother remain as "Miss Giles" according to family tradition?Where did the information about Giles I and Elizabeth originate—I have never found the source?In this case, then, does (Stephen) Giles Letcher I even exist with that name because if he does exist, then he would, in turn, require a "Miss Giles" as his mother to support not only the Giles nomenclature, but also the family oral tradition--or is the family oral tradition regarding Giles nomenclature simply inaccurate and if it is inaccurate then why did the family employ the name as a middle name for Letcher female members that were not descendants of Mary Giles? Was Giles Letcher II born in Henrico co instead of Northern Ireland to which many Quakers and Cavaliers had removed during the reigns of Charles I and/or II and the ensuing Cromwellian or Protectorate rule of England even possibly including at least the Carden Leches and the Shipley Leches.And if Giles II's mother was "Miss Giles"--then which one--it could not be a sister of Mary Giles Harding Hughes since her parents, William and Bethenia Knowles Giles, are not recorded as having another daughter either by will or any other information or available document—minors recorded in the executed will of William Giles, her father, only list Mary, William, John, and Nicholas.My most interesting question regarding Mary Giles is this new hypothesis of mine--could Giles II possibly be the son of Mary Giles with an "unnamed/unattributed" Letcher spouse who died previous to her first recorded marriage in 1710 (having married Thomas Harding at her approximate age of 22-25 would easily afford her means and opportunity for an earlier, though truncated, marriage to “Unknown” Letcher spouse-- also remember that many of these colonial women married four and five times until their death) to Thomas Harding--this is a possibility because Giles II's birthdate has generally been recorded as ABT 1710, so give or take a couple of years for birth and marriage of everyone involved, then Mary Giles Harding Hughes could easily have been married to “Unknown” Letcher first and this would definitely account for the Giles nomenclature and the bonded intermarriages of the Letcher, Hughes, Harding, and Giles families with the Perkins family at this time?Also supporting this hypothesis is that no records evidence any earlier marriages by the children of Mary Giles and Thomas Harding to a Letcher since the only available Letcher would have been her own son, Giles Letcher II.Would it not then be logical then that Mary Giles' son, Giles Letcher II, was married to her own step-daughter, Hannah Hughes (Hannah was also Mary’s first husband’s cousin)--this is perfectly logical given the pattern of marriages herein related, particularly for the Quakers?But if Giles I's or Giles II's mother was "Miss Giles" though not Mary Giles, then could "Miss Giles" be the daughter (to account for Giles I) or granddaughter (to account for Giles II) of John Giles and heiress, Philaritie Woodward, b. respectively 1624 and 1628 (William Giles' mother and father)?John's and Philaritie's children are known, at the least but incompletely, to be John, Thomas, and William along with an illegitimate daughter by Philiaritie named Jane Johnston (Johnson) to whose father, William Johnson (Johnston), Philaritie paid almost 6,000 pounds of tobacco for her support of this child who did not live with her and John Giles, and then Jane received the 400 acre plantation at Blackwater from her mother; however, a legitimate daughter of Philaritie and John Giles easily remains possible since I have not found record of all their issue?I have seen reference to the will of John Giles and he mentions "all his children" but I do not know if there exists in that document any specific references to those children by name. Two Thomas Gileses exist and one was the brother of referenced John Giles and the other was his son, Thomas.Two daughters of Thomas Giles--the brother of John--Eleanor Giles and Elizabeth Giles, are known to have married the two Smelley brothers who were these two Giles sisters' stepbrothers following the marriage of their father to the relict of William (I think William) Smelley, Sr.; this Smelley brothers’ mother’s maiden name is not known (at least I have not seen it) and other sources indicate that she was probably not even their mother but a second wife of their Smelley father.So, either of these two Giles sisters could conceivably have been the mother of Giles II prior to their Smelley marriages; additionally, an unknown daughter or granddaughter of John and Philaritie Giles would also fit the bill.Moreover, the younger Thomas Giles married the daughter of Jacob Darden with issue and there is also an Ann Giles who married John Moore before 1739 (perhaps their daughter, I cannot recall).In conclusion, many candidates exist for the Giles mother of Giles II, but the final question remains:when and how and why did his Giles mother go to Northern Ireland if she was a member of the colonial Giles family referenced herein if that was, indeed, where he was born?The only plausible answer to this is that the Giles family, like the Perkins family, may have retained property interests in England or Ireland which was not uncommon at this time and travelled back and forth just like Nicholas Perkins III and Mary Burton when they christened Nicholas IV at Stepney St. Dunsten.I do feel certain not only because of the Letcher and Hughes family relationships to this colonial Giles family but also because ofthe proliferation of descendants with the appellation of this surname that no doubt exists in my own mind that Giles Letcher was somehow closely related to this specific Giles family irregardless of whether he was born in Northern Ireland or Henrico co.Another byte of information that I recently uncovered regards the Maryland Quaker Giles family that I will later discuss with the Maryland Hughes family.I discovered the following quote and will offer it based on a mere possibility that it might pertain to my research:“Aquila Giles occupies the fringes of history.He was born into minor Maryland gentry in 1758, the son of Jacob and Joanna Paca Giles, grandson of Maryland governor William Paca.The Giles family of Devonshire, England, had come to America in 1634, and are on record as having obtained a land grant from Charles II in 1684.They seem, however, to have early faded into obscurity”.Jacob’s father was John Giles who was born ABT 1641 in Anne Arundel co, Maryland, and died ABT 1688 and his children were Elizabeth (1668-1747, and I believe she married a Coale), Nathaniel, John, Jacob, and Artridge.And proposing so many hypotheses for all this, I can still attribute that this Devonshire proximity would again fit into the Carden or Chatsworth Leche family relationship profile to provide Giles II his Giles mother. To summarize this entire subject, then, thank goodness the unappealing Smelley family name never became a recurring appellation for any of us in my own family (thanks to Shakespeare for tainting the surname of Letcher and then imagine rocketing the concupiscent overtone into outerspace by fueling it with the malodorous first-name of Smelley:Smelley Letcher—no thank you, I think.Hopefully, this surname was changed to Smedley in subsequent generations).Note:there was a Giles Smelley in this family, too.
So, for Giles I to obtain the name Giles, then a “Miss Giles” as his mother would have to be old enough to account for his birth around 1685 thereby attributing either Giles I or II with a "Miss Giles" as their mother (i.e., in order to support the Giles nomenclature as derived from his mother's Giles' surname) which is easily supported by my premise above.Of course, unless the Giles name was a hereditary nomenclature all the way to at least 1500 with my discovery of the reference to Gyles Leche, then no "Miss Giles" mother would even be necessary (I subsequently discovered a Giles Leech living in England around 1680 and I cannot remember where I left off viewing him as a prospect, but I feel certain as I compose this that he petered out; and then there was the case of Giles Leach who was involved with a Massachusetts family in 1650 that claimed descent from the Leche family, but I have entirely discounted this family’s candidacy based on its Massachusetts geographic location along with its probable Puritan background combined with a lack of similar socio-politico-economic factors juxtaposed with a striking lack of any similarity with female surnames or any other family names or connections or any other shred of evidence to link them to Giles Letcher I or II, but moreso I disqualified this family deriving from the simple fact that not a single known ancestor in my father’s background has heretofore consisted of anything other than colonial Virginia and colonial Maryland families—well, except for Colonel William Few, Sr. whose ancestor was closely associated with William Penn and came to that colonial settlement with him and they were Quakers, of course).All of these conjectures, then, would appear to contradict family oral and published tradition regarding Giles Letcher's mother's surname of Giles. These same Giles and Harding and Burton families all married the same Hughes and Perkins families and, of course, they were all Quakers, too.For this reason, I am assuming that the Letchers may have been Quaker, and this may be the reason that there is a lack of information if "Miss Giles" or Elizabeth Perkins married outside the Society of Friends when marrying a Letcher and might have been ostracized by its members; however, I truly don't really believe this is a credible conclusion on my part since the marriages with the Letchers continued for so many subsequent generations.During the past 4 weeks, I have copied from the Internet any and all documents in Henrico, James Co., Albermarle, Charles City, Goochland co that mention or contain Giles Letcher II'sname either as a witness or purchaser or seller--I probably only have 10 references.And his name appears with Farrar (daughter married Thomas Harding III), Ware (Ward or Wade family married all of these families), Perkins (married to Letchers), Harding (married to Letchers), Burton (Letcher ancestors), Childers (Letcher ancestors), Hutchins (daughter married William Harding Jr), Mosely (more of the same family marriages), LaForce (daughter married William Harding Jr), Beasley (Thomas Harding or Thomas Hughes was married to Phoebe Beasley), Price (Sarah Price daughter of Daniel Price married Harding Perkins, Mildred Perkins’ father), Moore (son married Ann Giles daughter of John Giles--see above) which supports that some if not all these people besides the Perkins and Hardings and Childers were his family with whom Giles II lived and socially interacted--they were all certainly intermarried with each other and with the Letchers both then and later on.To be objective, however, there exists one major limitation that affects my logic regarding this inference; and that is that these familial relationships could also be justified based solely upon Hannah Hughes Letcher—that these families were only her family and had no previous associations with Giles Letcher II until he is alleged to have set foot in colonial Virginia sometime around 1739 whereupon coincidence would have to prevail over logic regarding his Giles name compared with the integral importance of that family among all the relations stated herein; and the likelihood of that coincidence seems highly improbable.
Finally, I will provide another Perkins/Letcher marriage involving Hughes as follows:Nicholas Perkins IV son, Constantine (brother to Elizabeth Perkins who was allegedly married to Giles Letcher I), married first Ann Pollard whose father was Stephen Pollard and whose mother was Ann Hughes (Hannah's aunt or cousin, I believe); their son was Nicholas Perkins V who married Bethenia Harding whose daughter married Capt William Letcher (Giles II's son) whose grandaughter was Elizabeth Letcher Pannill Stuart Hairston, the mother of General JEB Stuart and Governor ____ Stuart and General George Hairston, as I recall, along with being the matriarch of many other Virginia notables.Constantine and Ann Pollard's son, Stephen Perkins, married Mary Hughes, daughter or sister of Benjamin Hughes (Hannah's and Ann's relative--I haven't finished this, so I don’t know the exact relationship); their daughter, Elizabeth Perkins, married Stephen Giles Letcher IV whose son was Kentucky Governor/General/Congressman/Mexican Ambassador Robert Perkins Letcher.And of course, the ubiquitous genealogy of John Letcher of Rockbridge co, Governor of Virginia during the War between the States, as follows:his father was William Houston Letcher whose father was John Letcher, son of Giles II and Hannah, who married Mary Houston sister of Sam Houston, Sr. who was the father of President/General/Governor Sam Houston of Texas and Tennessee fame.Sam Houston’s only known recorded interest in family history was contained in a letter to his first cousin, Governor Letcher, in which he desired Governor Letcher to enlighten him about their family background—this letter was published in the 1970’s and was one of a handful of historical letters made public by the Houston-Letcher family (I recollect my visits with the patriarch of this branch of the family, my cousin Marine General John Seymour Letcher who was the grandson of Governor John Letcher--I heard that his children recently sold a handful of their Sam Houston/John Letcher/Robert E Lee War-between-the-States correspondences for several millions of dollars at auction with either Sothebys or Christies--General Letcher kept all these documents in his detached garage, as I recall, and offered to show me these historic letters for an arranged visit allowing him a convenient time and opportunity to retrieve the documents, but unfortunately, I never visited at a convenient or arranged time as I was usually enroute to or from college in Williamsburg when I stopped to visit, and I do not think I was really all that interested in the letters at that juncture in my unseasoned life--his property in Lexington was located on Maiden Lane and historically divided Virginia Military Institute from Washington & Lee College and was sited perpendicular to Letcher Avenue which served as the “drag” or main street for both colleges.His unpretentious two-story frame house was the rebuilt residence of Governor Letcher's original home that Sherman burned in a very crude and vengeful manner based on the following account:with all immediacy upon learning that her home would shortly be burned while the Governor was away (possibly incarcerated), Mrs. Governor Letcher personally appealed to the invader general for sufficient time to retrieve their clothing and memorabilia prior to the burning and was promised that she would be able to proceed with her salvation of those essential possessions; and upon returning to her house, she was denied entry and made further appealed to fetch out some basic clothing for her children; and only with said clothing in arm, the yankee dog torched the armload of clothes while still in her hands and then torched her 80+ mother’s house next door while her mother was still inside); post-war, General Robert E. Lee served as president of Washington College--nka Washington and Lee--while Governor Letcher served as president of VMI; Governor Letcher’s daughter, Virginia Lee Letcher, had the honor and sole privilege of being Robert E. Lee’s only Godchild).Also, in Edgefield Co, SC, Melinda Key Letcher's brother, Tandy Key, married Mildred Perkins, the daughter of Harding Perkins.Mildred's brother, Daniel Perkins, married first Margaret Perkins and third, Susan Perkins.This is only a small amount of collateral Perkins/Hughes/Letcher/Harding marriages that I have bothered to note.As a postscript to this section, my father had a copy of a newspaper clipping dated 1907 provided by General Letcher in which the Letcher reunion at historic Jamestown, Virginia, was featured; the family get- together was represented by each unofficial head of the family by state branch with William Houston Letcher representing the Virginia branch of Houston-Letchers, my great-uncle, U.S. Consul General Francis Marion Letcher, Jr. representing the Alabama branch of Howard-Letchers, and I cannot offhand recall whether the representative of the Kentucky branch was a Perkins surname or a Letcher surname representing the Perkins-Letchers; this reunion specifically commemorated the 300-year anniversary of the founding of America in Jamestown.
As stated above regarding John Giles of Maryland, I did run into a document for Harford co Maryland referencing both Thomas Hughes and John Giles--together--but these appear to be different Quaker Hughes and Giles familes as they are involved and intermarried with my own Howard and Hammond-related families associated with my referenced colonial Maryland ancestor, Matthew Arundell Howard b. 1609.I have not discounted their relationship with the Virginia Hughes and Giles families but I haven't spent any time attempting to connect them since the Virginia familes all knit so closely and sensibly.
So, if you have anything that will provide me answers or information regarding the above Giles Letcher I/II questions, I would appreciate that enormously.Or anything more you have available on Giles Letcher II since I have absolutely no document or deed or anything to support Giles Letcher II's existence in the colonies or in Virginia before ABT 1739.
please process this with your copy below that we are descended from both of nicholas perkins III marriages to elizabeth harding and mary burton since i failed to note that since giles letcher I's wife elizabeth perkins was the daughter of nicholas perkins IV and sarah childers and that nicholas perkins IV was the son of nicholas perkins and mary burton.elizabeth perkins father was who i am referring to as nicholas IV.sarah perkins mother of hannah hughes was daughter of nicholas III.nicholas III's mother was jane irondonger (I have much more on her parentage) and nicholas III first wife elizabeth harding's father was constantine harding.nicholas II has unidentified wife and his father nicholas I was son of arthur perkins whose wife was elizabeth kymball whose father was nicholas kymball.nicholas perkins III second wife mary burton (mother of nicholas IV) was daughter of lydia fry and john burton son of robert burton of longfield and mary knowles (have lots more on this since mary giles harding hughes was daughter of william giles and bethenia knowles and she was the daugher and heir of capt. john knowles of jamestown--also see newell noel noles).nicholas IV's wife sarah childers is daughter of abraham childers I and jane anne howard--jane anne's father was john howard b 1590 d 1660 and abraham's father was william sr the immigrant 1622-1679 and his wife was dame anne ramsden; william sr the immigrant's father was william childers d. 1648 married to anne webster and his father was hugh childers 1500-1571 married to maude _____.thomas hughes sr’s father was edward married to elizabeth skiffen anderson and his father was rees hughes sr (possibly richard).philaritie woodward giles (married to john giles)--she had an illegitimate daughter jane with william johnston/johnson before her marriage to john giles was consummated.her father was thomas woodward sr who was 1st surveyor general of north carolina and remained assay master to the mint under charles I and did not give up that appointment even after coming to virginia; his father was thomas and the woodwards and the smiths and nathaniel bacon are intermarried.the hardings herein listed are direct descendants of the scottish clan/house of bueccleuch and are listed as such in a genealogy that i have on the hardin/harding family which includes them.also giles letcher has involvement with ware family.somewhere the ware and turpin families that adjoin giles letcher property are also on my father's extensive genealogy research, possibly key--can't remember.
Since Mary Giles Harding Hughes could plausibly be the mother of Giles Letcher II (and because I have referenced her so many times in my research), then the following genealogy for her is as follows:father was William Giles b. 1650 and d. 1728-9 Henrico co married to Bethenia Knowles b. 1669 d. 1742 whose father was Captain John Knowles of Jamestown and a Burgess b. 1612 d. 1685 and will was witnessed 1676 by John and Robert Burton--he may have been born 1629-30; William Giles was son of John Giles d. 1708 and Philaritie Woodward b. 1628; John's father was Jonathan Giles b. 1603; Philaritie's father was Thomas Sr born 1600 d. 1677 married to Katherine.And the father of Thomas Harding married to Mary Giles was Thomas Hardingb. 1630 d. 1689 and was married to Mary Berry b. 1666-91 and died 1715-17??.I also have a document showing Martin Key and Giles Letcher II involved in some transaction in 1650.Back to Captain John Knowles b. 1612 d. 1685 married to Mary Broadnax b. 1620 d. 1685 whose father was Thomas Broadnax the Immigrant 1592-1658 married to Elizabeth Taylor 1596 - ?, daughter of John Taylor, Lord of Shadockhurst, 1570- ? married to Elizabeth Chute 1530 - ?.Finally, in 1741, James Wade (Ware, Ward), Giles Letcher of Henrico Parish land bounded by Hazel Ware and Henry Ware (Ward, Wade) James Wade sold remainder to Strangeman Hutchins in the folk (fork) of Tuckahoe Creek adjoining Leonard Henley, John Barnet Jr., Giles Letcher, Henry Ware.Giles Letcher II died before 2 Aug 1779 in Henrico co.(also, some of these dates don't match but this is supplemental and I haven't tried to perfect any of this yet)
i am including these two emails from patricia pope matson below who just sent them to me regarding giles II and hannah letcher's ownership of a tavern in goochland co.note the jefferson and lewis reference--both these individuals are relatives of the letchers via the ware or branch families--i will have to provide that connection at a later date:
In the Thomas Lewis Journal it is only referred to as the "Letcher Tavern" and the court records do not show a name for the tavern.The Tavern is in Goochland County.I have an early map of the county borders of VA and it shows that Goochland was originally a huge county but slowly decreased in size.The map starts in 1585 and shows the formation of the first county in 1641.Goochland was formed between 1731 and 1740.By 1741 it had been cut back to basically the size it is today, Albermarle was cut out at that time.
Like you I have a copy of the story regarding the business in Petersburg that supposedly burned.I have not been able to confirm that story, I'm still looking.
Here is the information I have on the very early history of the Hughes Family.I have not documented this information "The progenitor of the American Branch of the family was Giles Letcher, whose mother, of Welch descent was a Miss Giles before her marriage.Giles Letcher came to the United States when a youth from the north of Ireland and settled in VA, first at Richmond and later in Goochland County.His wife was Hannah Hughes, a descendant of the Welch family of that name.Powys castle ancient seat of the Hughes family is still standing, and is one of the few old castles in Wales that is still as a home.It is one mile from Welshpool in Montgomery County, in the north of Wales"
"The Letcher chart gives the following as the Hughes Family, aristocratic ancestry of Hannah Hughes.The Hughes deduce through the Barons of Kymmer-Yn-Edeunion, and the royal house of Powys, a genealogy of 28 descents, transmitted in common with the lineage of the monarchs of North Wales and South Wales, in the annals of the Cymri as the Egbert of his race, who inherited the several kingdoms of North Wales, South Wales and the Powys, became King of all Wales in 643.There is more and I will happily share it with you if you do not already have the info.This history was compiled by Samuel Houston Showell.
There is a record of a land purchase by Giles Letcher dated Nov. 17 1741 containing 135 acres on the North bank of the James River in Goochland County some 35 miles west of Richmond.This deed is recorded in Goochland Court House on page 504 of Liber 3 of Deeds.He supposedly bought other land later, the last record of purchase was dated November 6, 1747
Let me know what other information you are looking for
I have Giles Letcher married to Hannah Hughes daughter of James Hughes in the early 1700's.One of their children was Stephen Giles Letcher who married Elizabeth Perkins in 1767.The Douglas Register lists the following children born to Stephen Giles Letcher and Elizabeth Perkins in Virginia: Benjamin Letcher Baptized Nov. 22, 1767: John Letcher baptizedDec. 19, 1769; Stephen Giles baptized April 1, 1771; Mary baptized April 1778.Other records indicate they had another daughter named Elizabeth Brown Letcher who married David Logan McKee in KY.and a son named Robert Perkins Letcher who became Governor of KY in 1840.My direct line comes down from Giles Letcher and Hannah Hughes to Stephen Giles Letcher and Elizabeth Perkins to my 3rd gr. grandmother Elizabeth Brown Letcher McKee.
I have a partial copy of a book entitledOur Pioneer Ancestors it covers the following families who intermarried: Hynes, Chenault, Dunn, McKee, Anderson, Taylor, Finley, Letcher and Houston families.The book was written by Emma Hynes Riggs and Henry Earle Riggs in Ann Arbor Michigan in 1941.
When I visited Goochland County, VA last year I found information in Court Records that showed that Giles Letcher and his wife Hannah Hughes owned a tavern in Goochland County starting in 1744 through 1749.Giles Letcher used 3 different bondsmen.I found the original reference to this Tavern in a Journal kept by Thomas Lewis when he and Peter Jefferson did the survey work on the Fairfax Line in 1746.Thomas Lewis commented that they were looking forward to staying one night at the Letcher Tavern.Then I found the Court Records verifying that information The Journal is available at the Library of VA in Richmond and at the New England Historical Genealogical Library in Boston, MA.There are other copies, just go on OCLC and type in subject Thomas Lewis Fairfax Line Survey and your zip Code and that site will give you the location of other libraries that have the journal.
This family also produced Governor John Letcher of VA in 1860 and eventually Sam Houston.
Stephen Giles Letcher was given the contract by Garrard County, KY to build the first Court House and Jail.they were very influential in Garrard County KY.
You seem to have considerably more information on Giles Letcher and Hannah Hughes than I do, Thanks for sharing.Let me know if you can use other information on the Letcher Family.I know one of Giles Letcher and Hannah Hughes lost a son in the Revolutionary War.
Patricia Pope Matson