|Susanna Baker||John Baker|
Susanna was the best known and historically recorded. We don't know if she was born in the colonies or transported but never found even an interesting entry as to someone claiming head rights. Her first husband was Doctor Thomas Eyre and they lived at "Longpoint" at Maggoty Bay of the tip of the Eastern Shore, and their land patent was called "Golden Quarter". The Eyre name is quite old and well researched in England dating back to the 1200's. His family probably lived in Wiltshire, Salisbury, England at "Brickworth". A St. Thomas Eyre had been the Archbishop of Canterbury, and a Thomas Eyre's grandfather was the 249th Mayor of Salisbury in 1586. In 1588, Queen Elizabeth referred to a Lt. Robert Eyre fought in Flanders and in the Indies under Sir Francis Drake who had descendants on the Eastern shore. It has long been a tradition that Thomas Eyre was sent to the Eastern Shore to establish Quaker Meeting Houses sometime after the Quaker movement started in 1643 and before his death. Prior to that, he had been a Puritan. We also discovered a citizen group know as the Romney Brotherhood. Romney Marsh is on the Kent coast, and the brotherhood included the Ayers family name; John Ayers in 1559, Thomas Ayer in 1560, and John Ayers in 1566.
In 1633, Thomas Eyre (B1576) of St. Dionyshire at Back Church in London was the Treasure of the Canada Company and we feel this may be the father of our Thomas Eyre. Earlier, a Mr. Eyre or Mr. Ayer also attended most of the meetings of the Virginia Company in London and appears to be an officer or on the executive committee. We would guess this to be the same Thomas Eyre. The name Eyre and Ayer were frequently interchanged.
Thomas Eyre was an original partner in the Bennett Group, the Puritan plantation of some 200 colonists established in Surrey about 1621, but Eyre was not reported in the 1624 census, perhaps returning to England. He was a medical doctor who attended the settlers when they sailed to Virginia in return for his shares in the Bennett Group. He was partners with Edward Bennett who received his patent in October of 1622, and sometime in 1621, Master Eyre's name dropped off the committee minutes in London when he came to Virginia and their plantation was then the largest plantation settled in Virginia and it was located near the Isle of Wight.
Eyre was in partnership with Edward, Richard Bennett, and Robert Bennett as well as Thomas and Richard Wiseman. Partner Bennett later became the Governor of Virginia and was influential in reinstating Captain William Stone as Maryland's Governor in 1652. It was from this settlement at isle of Wight that Stone took some of his 500 Virginians to resettle in Maryland in 1648-1651.
We believe that it was Ayer's son killed at the Battle of the Severn as the Standard Bearer of the Puritans.
Dr. Thomas Eyre was a Surgeon and highly respected, and was one of the very first Quaker converts. If Dorothy Baker did remarry Major Bond and resettle at Isle of Wight, this is where Eyre and Susanna Baker would have most likely met. His will was written on November 18, 1657 and presented on December 12, 1657.
Shortly after the death of Thomas in 1657, she married Captain Francis Potts. Potts was the brother of Virginia Governor John Potts, and involved in the sacking of Governor Harvey. Potts and his friends actually hog tied the overbearing Harvey, took him back to England, and threw him on the floor in front of the King.
Sister Mary Potts married Col. Edmund Scarborough Junior (1618-1671). Francis Potts had been named trustee of the Nathaniel Littleton livestock, and Daniel Baker and Francis Potts both witnessed the will of wife Anne Littleton. This would indicate that Francis Potts had been a friend of the Baker family and lived in the same area as Daniel and Susanna Baker. In his will, Potts called his land GOLDEN QUARTER on Maggoty Bay. Captain Potts died the following year and left his sizable estate to Susanna. In his will, he mentioned his cousin Captain Henry Perry (of Buckland), Perry's wife Elizabeth and Perry's neighbor Mrs. Aston who owed Potts money. Perry and Aston were neighbors of Francis Eppes in Charles City County on the James River near Shirley Hundred.
Potts also mentioned in his will Godson Argoll Yardley and neighbors Christopher Dixon and John Allen. Argoll was the son of Sir George Yeardley who it seemed never was too distant from the Bakers. Potts also mentioned his Godson Bishop on the other side of the bay. Was this a relative of Jacob Bishop? Eyre left £1000 to those whom he should remember in England, mentioned countryman and neighbor John Allen, neighbor Christopher Dixon; and sisters Mary, Catherine, and Bridge. George Smith and Peter Severn witnessed his will which was written August 5, 1658 and recorded October 28, 1658 in Northampton County. Peter Severn was the grandson of Susanna Baker Potts. Francis Potts was indicated as a friend in the 1657 will of Lady Dale's kinsman, Edward Douglas whose son married Edward Littleton, son of Nathaniel Littleton.
Susanna Baker Eyre Potts later married Col. William Kendall (D1686) was a widely respected elder, statesman, military man and had served with Col. Southy Littleton. Susanna Baker was a friend of Nathaniel Littleton's family, and was asked to care for their children, including Southey, upon Anne's death, and Captain Potts was a Trustee of Littleton's daughter. William Kendall may have come to Virginia as a western shore headright of Captain Thomas Hackett in 1652 along with John Willet who later was a neighbor in Northampton. William Kendall in 1664 was awarded abandoned property of Major William Andrews in Northampton.
Susanna probably controlled 8,000 acres of land by inheritance before her death circa 1679. Susanna died before William Kendall, and he remarried Sarah Matthews, widow of Henry Matthews, who built the Accomack Prison in 1678.
There is enough circumstantial evidence to indicate that Susanna Baker's children, and possibly her husband, were heavily involved in the Puritan revolt in Maryland:
Susanna Baker had three sons by Dr. Thomas Eyre, and they established some of America's most distinguished families. They had three sons:
We are not sure when Edward Baker was transported to the colonies, but if he was a mariner, his coming and going from the colony would not necessarily recorded.
In 1638, John Gater claimed head rights for 16 which included Edward Besaker, and William Goldsmith. This was in the Lynnhaven River area where brother Daniel Baker was claimed as a head right also in 1635. John Gater (B1620) was on the ship ASSURANCE in 1635 that brought so many of the Bakers involved in our story about John Baker. William Goldsmith was mentioned with John Baker, Thomas Baker, and Elizabeth Baker Ridgeley in a Saint Marys Will as well as the will of a known friend of Edward Baker, Dr. George Hack. Hack was once the business partner of his brother-in-law, Augustine Herman, and it has been stated in Dutch records that George Hack and Herman were the largest of the tobacco merchants in North America when they resided in Manhantan (New York) before Hack relocated to Virginia.
Captain William Claiborne reported an Edward Backler at Kent Island from 1631 to 1635 which would make sense as so many other Bakers and others of the area supported Claiborne at Kent Island.
We will soon read that Edward Baker made a significant gift to the children of Dr. George Hack, Major William Goldsmith was appointed guardian of the Hack orphans, and William Goldsmith married an Elizabeth Baker who was the widow of the very wealthy Robert Ridgeley of St. Mary's County. This is significant because Edward Baker and William Goldsmith had possibly been head rights together on the Lynnhaven River, Edward's brother John Baker is possibly the same person as Sheriff John Baker (D1675) of St. Mary's County, and it was possibly a sister or his daughter Elizabeth Baker who had married the wealthy Robert Ridgeley of St. Marys. It's also significant that he was located at Hack's Point because others in this location had strong ties to the western shore and it appears that it was this Edward Baker, Mariner, reported in both Virginia and Maryland records in this period.
Captain Daniel Lewellin mentioned earlier claimed head rights for an Edward Baker in 1650 in Charles City County, Virginia near Shirley plantation. Lewellin married the daughter of the first John Baker and purchased the property originally owned by the first John Baker at Shirley Hundred. Lewellin later in 1656 claimed again for an Edward Baker for land along the Rappahanock River. Multiple head rights seemed to be quite common among the mariners. In the Charles County Maryland records, there are several mentions of Captain Edward Baker and his ship which he sailed along the Potomac River. In one legal case, he was owed £2,500 by John Meek, which was an enormous sum, by their standards. We believe that this was probably our Edward Baker, and this explains why he was not active in Northampton or Accomack County. His activity seemed to end in those records after 1664.
In 1661, Edward Baker was fined £12 in Northampton for "Swearing", and in 1662, he was located in Harbortown, very near Puncoteaque, Virginia. Also in 1661, Dr. George Hack sold land to Edward Baker which Baker reassigned to Hack. On January 14,1663, Edward Baker was assigned 400 acres in Northampton at Matchotanke Creek from the Quaker Nicholas Waddilow who had purchased this land from Dr. George Hack. Baker reassigned this land to Dr. Hack.
Edward made a deed of a gift of a calf apiece to George Nicholas Hack and his sister Judith Hack, the children of Dr. George Hack who was later killed by the Indians in 1665. Dr. Hack was married to Anne Leisler Hermann, the sister of Augustine Hermann who was well known and had mapped Accomack and lived in St. Marys County. At different times in his career, he was an assistant to the Governor of New York, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. Augustine was sent to negotiate the land near Lewes in behalf of the Governor of Pennsylvania and apparently sold out to Maryland officials. The governor had him seized and planned to execute him but Augustine escaped to Maryland and later built a vast estate of 20,000 acres off the Bohemia River in Maryland where he lived like an English knight
Augustine Hermann is important because he and Charles Ballard were mentioned in the will of Hugh Baker of St. Mary's County in 1664, and then Caleb Baker settled Augustine's will in 1674 in St. Marys County.
In 1664, Edward Baker, "Late of London" died aboard the ship MARY bound from London to Virginia and commanded by Robert Pitts. He mentioned "The goods I now have with me aboard the ship" which he left in the trust of Captain Robert Pitts, Commander of the MARY to give to his two friends ; Mr. George Clarke; at "Ye sign of the shippe and starr in Chesapeake" and Mr. Simon Hackett, watch mate in Cornhill in London. Dr. George Clarke was registered in Northampton in 1653, and Clarke's widow remarried William Waters who we later found with property next to George Parker and Robert Davis.
From our Thomas Dale research, we learned that North Dale married Christian Clark, daughter of a George Clarke at St. Marys in Whitechapel. Dale descended from Matthew Dale of London and we found his descendants in Whaleyville. What was the relationship between the George Clarks? This appears to be the genealogy:
George Clark (1610-1650)= Margaret = (2) William Waters, son of Lt. Edward Waters of Lynnhaven
John Dale of London, son of Matthew = Elizabeth Lane (D1583)(M1567)
From our Thomas Dale research, we learned that North Dale married Christian Clark, daughter of a George Clarke at St. Marys in Whitechapel. Dale descended from Matthew Dale of London and we found his descendants in Whaleyville.
What was the relationship between the George Clarks? This appears to be the genealogy:
Edward Baker was from an area known as HACKS NECK. It must have been a major area at that time because many of the mariners came from that area and probably was a major support area for the sailing ships. Later, a project was started to make it one of four major ports in the Virginia region but that was scrapped. Cap. Edmund Scarborough moved from Northampton in 1642 when Accomack County was carved from Northampton County and apparently refused to return to Northampton. Read more about Robert Pitts and his other connections to the Baker clan.
Garrett Andrews [Anderson], who claimed a headright for Hangate Baker, was located near here. Andrews lived next to Christopher Kirke who in 1640 claimed headrights for Nicholas Barker and George Truitt. Nicholas Waddilow [Wallop] was a neighbor, and Waddilow married the widow of Garrett Anderson [ Andrews]. John Toulson lived here and claimed a headright for Alyce Baker in 1641, and Christopher Barker's wife was an Alyce.
We couldn't find more about Simon Hackett but a most interesting coincidence is that Captain William Claiborne was born in Cornhill, and Claiborne had Richard Baker, Thomas Baker, Andrew Baker, and Alexander Baker at various times helping him at Kent Island.
William Clarke claimed head rights for Nicholas Brown who was most likely the father of Devoreau Brown. William Clarke also lived next to Joseph Jolley, and Edmund Scarborough evicted a James Jolley from land near which Edward Baker briefly owned. Brown's son married Scarborough's daughter.
In 1650, Daniel Lewellin patented 270 acres at the head of Shirley Hundred and next to Walter Aston for 6 persons including an Edward Baker. Brother-in-law Francis Potts had mentioned the Astons in his will. Lewellin had been a headright of Henry Perry who was a cousin of Edward Baker's brother-in-law, Francis Potts. This land was quite close to the land of the original John Baker and was adjacent to Joseph Royall, Mrs. Aston, and William Baker. In the Oath of Fidelity of 1651, Edward Baker was not yet registered in Accomack County, but Lewellin claimed another headright in 1656 along the Rappahanock River in Northumberland. In 1662, he was mentioned in the will of John Helmes of Charles County, Maryland.
It is interesting to note that Major William Goldsmith was one of the guardians of Dr. Hack's children in 1664. Goldsmith was from St. Marys County but had land in Accomack County, St. Marys, and Dorchester. He was married to Elizabeth Baker, the widow of the wealthy Robert Ridgeley who had been on the ship ASSURANCE in 1635 on which Hangate Baker had come to Virginia. On that ship was Elizabeth Baker (B1615) who we think may have married Ridgeley.
In his will, Edward Baker mentioned that Captain William Kendall was his brother-in-law. His friends were to depose of his goods and give the results to his children. Therefore, we are assuming that he was a sailor or merchant.
Deveroau Brown was a witness to the will of Edward Baker and later executed the will of Captain Robert Pitts in 1670. William Jones and William Stevens were also witnesses to Edward's will. A William Jones had been at the first Eastern Shore plantation with the first John Baker, and Stevens was listed as a brother-in-law of Robert Hutchison of Hacks Neck, neighbor of George Hack. Brown's land claim in 1671 was based on his assertion that Edward's brother Daniel Baker was one of 41 people that he had brought into Virginia. Devoreaux Brown had witnessed the will of Edward Baker, purchased land from a Robert Baker, settled the will of Cap. Pitts in 1670, lived next to Thomas Fowle who married Amey Anderson, and had several other connections to the Baker clan. Brown's widow remarried several times. General John Custis of ARLINGTON in Northampton lived on the property immediately next to William Baker, son of Hugh Baker! Col. Edward Hill lived at SHIRLEY Plantation immediately next to land once owned by John Baker and later Daniel Lewellin, friend of uncle Edward Baker.
Robert Pitts died in 1669/1670, but had been appointed his land then called "Pitts Creek" by Col. Edmund Scarborough near present day "Bullbegger Creek". Scarborough was married to the daughter of Francis Potts who was the brother-in-law of Edward Baker. Besides being a mariner, Lt. Col. Robert Pitts was mentioned in official correspondence between the Virginia Colony and Accomack in 1652 and 1653, and served under Col. Nathaniel Littleton. Pitts also owned a great deal of property in Isle of Wight County as early as 1637 which may be where Edward Baker and Robert Pitts first met if Major Bond married Edward's widowed mother. Dorothy Bond sold Pitt's brother-in-law land in Isle of Wight.
Edward Baker and Elizabeth Baker but we have little additional information on them after 1667 when their uncle Daniel Baker snubbed them each with one shilling from his estate. From the records of Hack's Neck, we find no evidence of a Baker family. There was no mention of his wife and we assume she was dead at the time of the will. We find the very close association with Dr. George Hack most interesting and ponder the possibility that Edward had possibly married into that family. We also think that Edward had married into the Waddilow family since the continuing relationships are so strong. I do not understand why Edward did not mention the children of brother Hugh Baker who was already dead at the time of his will. Perhaps Edward had been a sea or in England and was unaware of his brother's death. You may remember that Hugh made no mention of any other siblings.
In 1665, the year following Edward Baker's death, Elizabeth Baker was the headright of Charles Ballard in Somerset County. Charles Ballard and Augustine Herman witnessed the will of a Hugh Baker in 1664 in St. Marys County, and Ballard's widow Sarah remarried Steven Lufflin of Somerset who was mentioned in several Baker related land deals, and a John Lufflin was mentioned in a long legal document concerning Elizabeth Baker, widow of Sheriff John Baker of St. Marys.
We believe daughter Elizabeth married Mark Manlove in 1662. She may have already been the widow of John Roberts and in 1666, her name was now Elizabeth Green Manlove. We believe she married Thomas Green because she released her dower rights to William Kendall, who would have been her uncle. It was probably Thomas Green who was declared as a headright in 1650 of Richard Jacob.
In 1673, William Jones patented 800 acres called DONCASTER in Dorchester County on the southside of the Choptank River and the north side of Phillips Creek for transporting Edward Baker, John Wiseman, William Lloyd, and Charles Bayly. This would seem to be the son of Edward Baker as William Jones was a witness to Edward Baker's will.
Another interesting detail is that Southey Littleton was a nearby neighbor near Edward Baker and Hack's Neck, and he was raised by Susanna Baker Eyre.
We need to discuss one other significant character before we leave Edward Baker. This person is Daniel St. Thomas Jennifer. His father Daniel was appointed the overseer of the estate of neighbor Southy Littleton in Nandua, was a witness to the will of George Parker who we later find very active in Gargatha, and was the administrator of the will of Devoreau Brown whose widow married General Custis of Arlington and then Col. Edward Hill of Shirley Plantation. Jennifer was also the lawyer representing Sheriff John Baker of St. Mary's County to whom he sold his tavern in Saint Marys City. Jennifer purchased vast tracts of land at Gargatha where Edward's nephew, John Baker ,suddenly appeared in 1695; and was a neighbor to Robert Davis of St. Mary's County who had married the widow of Hugh Baker of St. Mary's. Jennifer finally settled along the Potomac River adjacent to the estate of Governor William Stone, Before becoming the Maryland Governor, Stone had managed the estate of Captain William Eppes where the first John Baker, father of Edward Baker, was located in 1624.
(Will written April 13, 1667 and presented May 31, 1667.)
In March 1626, Nathaniel Littleton claimed a large patent, a portion of which claimed a headright for Daniel Baker. Also claimed were Richard and George Smythe whose later generations also marry into the Baker line. On October 3, 1635, Reverend William Wilkinson patented land opposite to Adam Thorogood's plantation in Lynnhaven. Wilkinson's mother was Margery Baker, daughter of Richard Baker of Uxbridge. Another William Wilkinson had married Bennett Baker of Staplehurst in the 1680s. Adam Thorogood has very active Northampton ties with the Yeardleys, and was a brother-in-law to John Baker of Mayfield, had lived with Edmund Waters and Nicholas Brown in the 1624 muster of Virginia; this most likely the same Daniel Baker.
We believe Daniel was a mariner and would have periodically been claimed for multiple head rights just like his brother Edward. We think that Daniel was one of the older brothers, and it was probably this same Daniel Baker who was reported in 1616 sailing with Captain John Smith when he made his second voyage to discover New England. The reader may remember that it was Captain Stallings that Cap. William Eppes killed on the James River. As Smith's Steward, this Daniel Baker would have been probably born circa 1598-1600.
On March of 1642 and July of 1643 it was mentioned that Daniel Baker was indebted to Thomas Hunt, and Robert West was Baker's attorney. On March 25, 1651, Daniel Baker was a signer of the Northampton Oath of Fidelity to England. In 1681, Dr. George Clarke (friend of brother Edward) and Thomas Hunt together patented land on Hogg Island for which they claimed a Jonathan Baker as a headright. This is the same Clarke that had been mentioned as a friend of brother Edward Baker, and whose widow married William Waters. It is unknown if this is the John Baker, son of Hugh Baker, or another Jonathan Baker.
Daniel Baker was a witness to Col. Nathaniel Littleton's will in September, 1654, and Daniel Baker was a guardian to young Southey as well as a head right of Southy Littleton in 1655. Southey lived at Nandua not too distant from brother Edward Littleton. Certainly, Daniel must have been a close friend to have been a head right of the son, and witnessed Nathaniel Littleton's will.
Col. Nathaniel Littleton and his son Col. Southy Littleton were considered the very top military men of their day. Littleton had served in the lowlands just as Sir Thomas Dale, Edward Waters (father of William Waters), George Yeardley (father of Argol Yeardley), and Captain William Eppes. The Littletons lived at Maggoty Bay in the very same area as Thomas Eyre and Susanna Baker. Nathaniel Littleton had sailed to the colonies in 1635, and lived like the son of a knight on their 6,000 acre plantation. Littleton sat on the Northampton Court in 1640 with Edward Douglas, William Andrews, Argoll Yeardley, and William Burdett.
Daniel Baker's nephew William Baker later patented land on Old Plantation Creek adjacent to Nathaniel Littleton's land. Commissioner Nathaniel Littleton was a friend of Captain Francis Potts, and asked Potts to be a trustee of his daughter Hester in his will. On November 20, 1650, widow Ann Littleton, wife of Nathaniel, requested sister Mrs. Thomas Eyre, Susanna Baker Eyre, to take custody of the Littleton children upon her death and for Isabel Douglas, wife of Edward Douglas, to pay for their tuition. Northampton Records in 1667 reported that Daniel Baker's "sister was Susanna Baker, who was originally married to Dr. Thomas Eyre, then Col. Francis Potts, and now Col. William Kendall".
What was the relationship that would bring Daniel and Susanna Baker close enough to be a witness to Nathaniel's will? Was he a lawyer, a confidant, or one of his top and trusted officers or sergeants? We believe that Daniel was probably a mariner servicing primary the Littleton trading post at Nandua. Littleton had established one of the first and largest Indian trading posts, and evidently had learned to speak various Indian languages as he was asked by the Governor of New York to negotiate a treaty between New York and the Indians.
On January 28, 1662, Daniel Baker gave a gift of a mare to his brother-in-law, Col. William Kendall specifically for his nephews; Daniel, Thomas, and John Eyre. Daniel Baker apparently had no children as he left the majority of his estate to his three Eyre nephews and snubbed his brother Edward's children by leaving them a shilling each. Witnesses to his will were Nathaniel Wilkins, Daniel Payne, and George Mortimer. Daniel Eyre and John Thomas each received the same but separate gift of a mare from Daniel Baker on February 10, 1662. This was a considerable gift considering that horses were scarcely available in Accomack or Northampton until after 1655. In 1698, a Daniel Baker did make a gift to a William Willet but we have never been able to confirm if he was a son or nephew of this Daniel Baker.
John Thomas, came to Virginia in 1622, and was registered at the Muster of Samuel Matthews across the James River from Jamestown. Listed in the same muster was Abraham Wood who became an immediate neighbor of Daniel Baker's father, John Baker. He was listed adjacent to Seth Ward in Henrico in 1637 on south side of Willoughbys Creek. John Thomas was a 1638 head right of Christopher Wormley with William Baker. John Thomas's wife's name was Dorothy. Had there been a sister Dorothy Baker? In 1653, Thomas Jordan (probably Jr.), Katherine Harris, Henry Scott, and Joseph Harrison were head rights of Richard Smith in Northampton at Cap. John Thomas, "his necke". Joseph Harrison is the name of one of the headrights of Charles Ballard along with Elizabeth Baker in Dorchester County in 1665.
In 1671, Mr. Devoreau Brown was awarded 2,050 acres for bringing 41 people including a Daniel Baker and Isaac Dix. This may be the same Daniel Baker (D1667) for which Brown had paid earlier transportation. It is very interesting that Isaac Dix settled in Gargatha, Virginia. Brown had been a witness to brother Edward's will.