Blennerhasset of Cumberland and Norfolk, England
Ralph de Blennerhasset [a] b abt 1372, of Blennerhasset, Cumberland, England. He md Joan/Jane Skelton [b] abt 1392, daughter of Sir Clement Skelton and Joan de Orton. She was b abt 1376, d 17 Mar 1449/50.
Child of Ralph de Blennerhasset and Joan/Jane Skelton was:
Sir Ralph Blennerhasset [c], Knight, b abt 1398, of Frense, Norfolk, England, d 8 Nov 1475, prob Frense, Norfolk, England. He md Jane Lowdham [d] abt 1422, daughter of John Lowdham and Jane Kelvedon. She was b abt 1409, of Lowdham and Boylands, Suffolk, England, d bef 12 Oct 1501.
John Blennerhasset [e] b abt 1423, of Frense, Norfolk, England, d 8 Nov 1510. He md  Margaret Heigham [f] abt 1450, prob Norfolk, England, daughter of Thomas Heigham, Esquire, and Isabel Francis. She was b abt 1430. He md  Jane Tindal bef 26 Mar 1473.
Sir Thomas Blennerhasset [g], Knight, b abt 1461, of Norfolk/Suffolk, England, d 17 Jun 1531. He md  Jane Sutton, and  Margaret Braham abt 1493, daughter of John Braham, Esquire, and Jane Reyden. She was b abt 1478, d 23 Jul 1561.
John Blennerhasset [h] b abt 1508, of Norfolk/Suffolk, England. He md Elizabeth Cornwallis abt 1535, daughter of Sir John Cornwallis and Mary Sulyard.
The family of Blennerhasset derives its name from the village in Cumberland; the earliest members of this family appear in the middle of the fourteenth century, as burgesses of the ancient Roman city of Carlisle. Being a burgess family, without landed estates, their earliest history is difficult to ascertain. It was not until the marriage of Ralph de Blennerhasset to the heiress Joan Skelton, she of the families of Skelton and Orton, both of considerable landed importance, that we are able to trace the Blennerhasset family with any clarity.
a. Ralfe de Blennerhasset served as MP for the ancient city of Carlisle in 1413.
b. Joan (or Jane), was the daughter and co-heiress of Sir Clement Skelton (MP for Cumberland 1382) by Joan (b 1345), daughter and co-heiress of Giles de Orton (MP for Carlisle 1337/38) of Orton and Stainton, Cumberland. Joan de Orton carried Orton and Stainton to Clement Skelton (grandson of Hugh de Skelton, flourished ca 1325) and these estates descended to their daughter Jane, wife of Ralfe de Blennerhasset. Joan de Orton descended from Robert de Orton of Orton, who occurs about 1252. Jane Skelton remarried after Ralfe's death, to Sir John Middleton, and also had issue by him.
c. Ralfe, son of Ralfe and Jane (Skelton), by his marriage to Jane Lowdham (widow of Thomas de Heveringham), acquired the manors of Frense, Lowdham, Boylands, and Kelvedon. Ralfe predeceased his wife by almost 26 years.
d. Jane Lowdham was the daughter and heiress of John Lowdham of Lowdham and Boylands in Suffolk, and Frense, Norfolk, by his wife, Jane, heiress of William Kelvedon of Kelvedon, Great Braxsted, Essex. The Lowdhams were an ancient East Anglian family which occurs at Frense as early as 1280. Jane Lowdham's age, as given in her father's i.p.m, dated 1423, was age 14, and at her i.p.m., taken on 12 Oct 1501, her son and heir, John Blennerhasset, was aged 77 years.
e. Succeeded to his mother's properties, and in 1493/94, he was holding Borelands (Boylands). By first wife, Margaret Heigham, he left three children, Sir Thomas Blennerhasset, his heir, Robert Blennerhasset of Warwickshire, and Margaret, a prioress. After Margaret's death, he married secondly, bef 26 Mar 1473, Jane Tindal. He died in his 87th year, and his i.p.m. was taken in 1510/11.
f. Margaret Heigham was daughter of Thomas Heigham, Esquire, of Heigham Green in Gaseley parish, Suffolk, by Isabel, daughter and co-heiress of Sir Hugh Francis of Giffard's in Wickhambrook, Suffolk. Thomas Heigham was a Justice of Assize in Suffolk in 1457.
g. Son and heir by his father's first wife, Sir Thomas, Knight, of Frense, etc., succeeded his father in 1510. He married firstly, Jane Sutton, their son George inheriting Frense, Boylands, etc. By his second wife, Margaret, daughter of John Braham, Esquire, of Wetheringsett, Suffolk, he had two sons and five daughters (two of whom were both named Anne): (1) Thomas, a priest; (2) John; (3) Elizabeth, wife of Lionel Louthe and Francis Clopton; Anne, wife of Sir Anthony Rouse, Knight; (4) Anne, wife of George Duke and Peter Rede; Margaret, wife of John Gosnold; and Katherine, wife of Anthony Wingfield.
h. John Blennerhasset, Gent., of Barsham by Beccles, Suffolk, was the fourth son of Sir Thomas and said Thomas' second son by his second wife. John married twice, first to Elizabeth Cornwallis, and secondly to Mary, daughter of Sir Edward Ichingham. Elizabeth, the daughter of John Blennerhasset by his first wife Elizabeth Cornwallis, through her marriage with Lionel Throckmorton, became the grandmother of early immigrant John Throckmorton of Providence, RI, and ancestress of the New Jersey Throckmortons.
AR Line 208; GL: English Origins of New England Families, 1500s to 1800s, Series 1, Volume 2, The East Anglian Blennerhassets, by G. Andrews Moriarty, pp. 765-773, from an article originally published in NEHGR, republished by Genealogical Publishing Company.
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