Grubb Family

Every now and then, I get tired of seeing the same old wrong data being passed around the net, so I thought I would take a moment and post about one or two that I see far too often, from the Grubb family. Since this is a direct line for me, I’ve spent a fair amount of time tracking it down.
The first of these has to do with Frances Vane, the wife of John Grubb, the immigrant ancestor for the line. The common story is that John Grubb married Frances Vane and that she was the daughter of Sir Henry Vane, thereby providing descendants a link to nobility. However, descendants of this pair will have to look elsewhere for their nobility links as Sir Henry’s daughter Frances was never married to John Grubb and, in fact, never came to America at all. Her grave lies in Shipborne Parish, Kent, England, where her burial is recorded as “Frances Kewkewich, daughter of Sir Henry Vane — June 4, 1683”. Since John Grubb’s will of 1707 names his wife Frances as a beneficiary, she could not have been Sir Henry’s daughter as said daughter had been dead for over 20 years by that time. So let’s lay that particular theory to rest, once and for all, OK?
The second one that I see a lot is Anne, the wife of John’s son Emanuel. In this case, the all-too-often repeated mistake is to name Anne Hedges Koch ( or some similar spelling) as his wife. This Anne is supposedly the grand-daughter of Otto Ernest Koch, one of the earliest inhabitants of the Swedish colony near Marcus Hook. No doubt, he’s an important person and it would nice to have him as an ancestor, but the truth lies elsewhere.
Emanuel’s wife was Anne Hitchcock, daughter of Thomas Hitchcock, of Cecil County, Maryland. First, let’s take a look at the abstract for Thomas Hitchcock’s will:

Hitchcock, Thomas. Cecil Co.
12th Oct. 1707
To wife Anne, dwelling plantation, including 200 A., ____, during life; at her decease to son John.
To son Thomas and hrs., land ____, on which he lives.
To dau. Anne and hrs., “Swamp” and “Paradise” on s.e. side N.E. River.
To daus Anne, afsd., Millycent and son John afsd., personalty.
Wife, afsd., extx. and residuary legatee.
Test: John Coosyne, Wm. Dare,Sr., Andrew Rosenquist, Paul Phillips.

Note particularly the transfer of the pieces of property called “Swamp” and “Paradise. They appear again in the land records from Cecil county as shown here:

P. 243. Deed.
Emanuel Grubb of New Castle Co., upon Delaware, farmer, and Ann his wife, for £120, to Robert Story of Cecil Co., gent., a tract of 165 acres called the Swamp on the east side of the Shannon River (now called North East River) by land called Whitton’s Forest. Said land is part of the land that belonged to George Talbot and was sold to him by Thomas Hitchcock by deed dated 11 Aug 1684, recorded in Lib. C, folios 159-160. Also a parcel of land called Paradise on the south side of the Shannon River adjoining the other tract and containing 150 acres. This was also part of George Talbot’s land and sold by his wife Sarah Talbot to Edward Johnson by deed dated 27 Aug 1686 recorded in Lib. C, folio 434. By the Last Will and Testament of the said Edward Johnson and the said Thomas Hitchcock the lands became the property of Ann Grubb, one of the daughters of Thomas Hitchcock.
Made and Ackn: 19 Oct 1736. Wit and JPs: Wm. Rumsey, Thos. Johnson, Jr.
Rec: 11 Dec 1736.
Wm Knight, Clerk.

So there you have it – the land parcels are named specifically in both Thomas’s will and the later land record, and Emanuel’s relationship as husband to Anne Hitchcock is clearly shown. In retrospect, it’s easy to see how the mistake came about in the first place since there’s a similar sound to the last name, but it’s a crying shame to see the same mistake carried on for year after year. Do a fellow genealogist a favor and point out the real story to them next time you see these mistakes – they might even thank you!

Leave a Comment