GEN-MEDIEVAL-L ArchivesArchiver > GEN-MEDIEVAL > 2009-03 > 1237310881
Subject: Re: Possible royal descent for George1 Pordage of Massachusetts?
Date: Tue, 17 Mar 2009 10:28:01 -0700 (PDT)
On Mar 10, 1:47 pm, wrote:
> George Pordage of Massachusetts is an ancestor of the late, great Mr.
> John Kerry. Descendants of Pordage through two grandchildren, James
> Bowdoin and Elizabeth (Bowdoin) Pitts, are shown here:
> It is well known that George Pordage's father was Joshua Pordage of
> London, whose will of 1690/1 mentions "my son George Pordage of Boston
> in New England."
> "Joshua Pordage" is a rather unusual name, and we find a trace of the
> same man in a recent edition of his uncle's (Thomas St. Nicholas's)
> poetry (H. Neville Davies, ed., _At Vacant Hours: Poems by Thomas St.
> Nicholas and His Family_ [Birmingham University Press, 2002]), which
> unfortunately isn't available to me). However, the few pages
> accessible on Google Books do seem to show this is the same Joshua
> Pordage, stating, p. 329, "Joshua [Pordage] was to survive until 1691"
> and "after Thomas St Nicholas's burial, Joshua Pordage acted as one of
> the two appraisers who inventoried and valued HIS LATE UNCLE'S goods
> and chattels" (emphasis mine):
> In the index of this book -- the pages of which are available on
> Google -- we find the following entries:
> St. Nicholas, Dorothy, nee Tilghman (mother)
> St. Nicholas, Dorothy (sister): see Pordage
> In other words, the poet, Thomas St. Nicholas, was son of Dorothy
> (Tilghman) St. Nicholas, and brother of another Dorothy St. Nicholas
> who had married a Pordage.
> Under "Pordage" in the index, we find:
> Pordage, Dorothy, nee St Nicholas (sister)
> Pordage, Edward (brother-in-law)
> Pordage, George (nephew's son)
> Pordage, Joshua (nephew)
> This seems to tell us that Edward Pordage married Dorothy St.
> Nicholas, and had a son Joshua Pordage, who, in turn, had a son
> George. This matches up nicely with the available information for the
> New England immigrant.
> Dorothy (Tilghman) St. Nicholas would seem to be this lady in the link
> below, who had a descent from Edward III through her mother Susanna
> (Whetenhall) Tilghman:
> From A2A, we get the following document, which seems to help:
> Canterbury Cathedral Archives, Ecclesiastical Cause Papers, DCb/J/J/
> 40/30 (10 May 1627):
> Plaintiff: Elizabeth St. Nicholas, relict, executrix; Defendants:
> Thomas and John St. Nicholas, Deborah Mayor alias St. Nicholas,
> Dorothy Pordage alias St. Nicholas, Elizabeth and Timothy St. Nicholas
> (children); Documents: Sent.
> Notice that the widow and executrix was named Elizabeth (Dorothy had
> died in 1605 per the article cited last). If one does a search in the
> IGI for the birth of Timothy St. Nicholas, his parents come up as
> Thomas St. Nicholas and Elizabeth Woodward. The extracted IGI shows
> Saint Giles Cripplegate, London
> --Thomas Saintnicholas to Eliza. Woodward, 29 Jan. 1609
> so Eliza or Elizabeth Woodward must be a second wife. Dorothy who
> married Edward Pordage was almost certainly by the first wife, Dorothy
> Tilghman. Dorothy (St. Nicholas) Pordage may be the widow Dorothy
> Pordage who married Stephen Solley of Ash in 1640 per this record:
I was able to locate a copy of "At Vacant Hours", the book cited above
in snippet form. It has a fair amount of genealogical information,
both in a short bio of Thomas St. Nicholas and in commentaries on the
poems where various family members are mentioned. For a non-
genealogical work, its genealogy is reasonably well supported, citing
recognized secondary sources (such as Nichols' Leics and various
visitations) and some primary sources such as parish registers.
Dorothy St. Nicholas, the second wife of Edward Pordage, is clearly
identified as the next elder sister of Thomas St. Nicholas the poet.
Dorothy's son Joshua is covered in the book in an interesting way, as
the proposed author of one of the poems in the book addressed TO
Thomas the poet but not written BY him. The poem in question was
titled by Thomas St. Nicholas as "J. P. to T. St N. - Upon My Retiring
into the Country after I had Stated My Accounts". It is followed by a
poem FROM Thomas St.Nicholas to the author of the previous poem and
addressing him as "nephew". There is some uncertainty about the
identity of "J.P." since there were two other individuals besides
Joshua Portage who could have qualified as nephews of Thomas under a
rather broad definition of the term "nephew", but the editor concludes
that Joshua Pordage is the most likely candidate.
There are 2-3 pages of information on Joshua Pordage including some
description of his career and his family, together with sources. I
won't go into all the details, but the discussion definitely seems to
confirm Joshua's position in the descent mentioned in this thread.
(As an aside, it also has some discussion of his business relationship
with the Major family, mentioned elsewhere in this thread.) Anyone
seeking to pursue this descent and to document it fully would be well
advised to obtain a copy of this book, through inter-library loan or