John GRESHAM is believed to be the John GRESSAM, age 22, who on 21 Aug. 1635
was to be transported to VA on the Thomas.1 Some researchers in the
past believed him to be the son of Sir Edward GRESHAM of Titsey, Surrey,
England, and grandson of Sir Thomas GRESHAM of Titsey (died 1632). They
had based this on a pedigree chart which as a footnote stated "John and Edward
were his second and third sons, ...." They had interpreted this as meaning
John (of later VA) and Edward (of later VA) were the second and third sons
of Sir Edward. Closer examination of the chart shows this footnote referred
to Sir John (of Titsey, d. 1643)) and Sir Edward (of Titsey, the alleged
father of our John) as the 2nd and 3rd sons of Sir Thomas.2 Therefore,
the ancestry of John GRESHAM of MD and VA is unknown.
John settled on the Isle of Kent, MD, which was also claimed by VA. In
February 1639 (possibly 1639/40) he signed as witness to a document.3
On 7 Sep. 1640 John GRESHAM of the Isle of Kent, planter, demanded 100 acres for
transporting himself into the Province at his own charge. On 24 September 1640,
the surveyor was ordered to lay out 100 acres for him on the Isle of Kent.4
Before John acquired patent to the land, he sided with William CLAIBORNE
and VA in the ongoing dispute between VA and MD over ownership of the Isle
of Kent. For his part in the "rebellion", the land of John GRESHAM was seized
on 9 November 1648 by the Proprietors of Maryland.5 John's tract Beaver Neck
was awarded to Francis BROOK(S) for his service during the rebellion by
Leonard CALVERT.6 BROOK(S) assigned the land to John SALTER, who
received a patent to the land on 27 Sep. 1658.7
With other exiles from the Isle of Kent, John GRESHAM settled in Northumberland
Co., VA. The name of John's first wife is unknown. He secondly married
Mary, the widow of John PLAYCE, he having died in 1650. John GRESHAM died
between 30 Jan. 1655/6 when he sued in court,8 and 14 Feb. 1655/6 when
administration was granted on his estate9 in Northumberland County.
John GRESHAM and first wife had children:
1. Katherine12 GRESHAM b. say 1640 probably Isle of Kent, MD; m. Justinian
TENNIS10 (TENNISON); living 1711 Charles Co., MD18
2. Mary12 GRESHAM living 165612
3. Martha11,12 GRESHAM; m. by 1671 Richard FLYNT;13 d. shortly before 21 Mar. 1704/5
John GRESHAM and second wife Mary (-?-), widow of John17 PLAYCE16 had child:
1. Justinian10 GRESHAM b. say 1655; d. by 1658 Northumberland Co.15
Some researchers claim that John GRESHAM is the father of John GRESHAM who
was transported into MD in 1670, and died there about 1713. In that John
in 1640 claimed transportation only for himself, it would appear he did
not marry until after his arrival. As such, any child John would have
been a minor at the time of his death. No records are found of guardianship
for a son John, or any mention of another John in Northumberland County.
1. John Camden Hotten, The Original Lists of Person of Quality 1600-1700,
(Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1978), pp. 126-127 [images 122-123].
2. Gresham Any Way You Spell It 16 (Jan. 2001): 16-17.
3. (Archives of MD 10:61).
4. Maryland Patents AB&H, p. 84 [image 46 of 235].
5. (Archives of MD 4:441-442)
6. MD Patents AB&H, pp. 206-207 [image 107 of 235].
7. MD Patents Q, pp. 194-195 [image 101 of 256].
8. Northumberland Co, VA 1652-1665 court order book, pp. 77-78 (bottom #'s).
9. Northumberland Co., VA 1652-1665 court order book, p. 81 (bottom #'s).
10. Northumberland Co., VA 1652-1665 Court Order Book, p. 126 (bottom #'s).
At court on 14 Feb. 1655 was ordered that John Essex should have the tuition
of Justinian, son of John Gresham, Decd. Essex has renounced the order, so the
said Justinian Gresham shall be in the keeping & under the Tuition of Justinian
Tennis whoe married wit the Sister of the said Just: Gresham.
11. Northumberland Co., VA 1652-1665 court order book, p. 125 (bottom #'s).
12. Northumberland Co., VA 1652-1658 deeds and wills, p. 77.
Deposition of John Essex that John Gresham had exchanged a cow with his
Deposition of John Essex that Justinian Tennis called this deponent to the
bed side where John Gresham lay at this deponent's house and desired the
deponent to mark a cattle for the said John Gresham's daughter Martha of
the cow belonging to Katherine, the wife of the said Justinian Tennis.
13. Northumberland Co., VA 1666-1672 deeds and wills, p. 167 (bottom numbers).
14. Northumberland Co., VA 1699-1713 Order Book, p. 332.
Probate granted on the last will and testament of Martha Flynt.
Note: The wills for this time period do not survive.
15. Northumberland Co., VA 1658-1666 deeds and wills book, p. 3 (top numbers).
Account of cattle which belonged to Justinian Grehams, decd. by
16. Northumberland Co., VA 1652-1658 deeds and wills, p. 46.
Mary Player, then the wife of John Gresham, gifts of livestock to children
John Player and Justinian Gresham, her youngest son.
17. Northumberland Co., VA 1650-1652 deeds and orders, p. 41.
Commission of administration to Mary, wife of John Place
18. Joseph Vennor inventory, MD inventories and acccounts 32B:189-191.
Kat. Dennis owed debt to estate.
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