Bedell And Burwell

Bedell And Burwell

BY a deed dated July 28, 1648, found by W. G. Stanard among the records of York County, Va., Dorothy Wingate, relict of Roger Wingate, Treasurer of Virginia, conveyed to "her well-beloved son Lewis Burwell" all rents due at said Roger's decease, and confirmed to her by the King. The Visitation of Bedfordshire with Additional Pedigrees (the latter prepared in 1637), published by the Harleian Society, tells us that Roger Wingate, living in London in January, 1637, married Dorathey, dau. of William Bedell of Catworth, County Huntingdon, widow of Edward Burwell of Harlington, County Bedford. The records of Great Catworth covering a long period were examined for me by the Rector; and, while the marriage of William Bedell was not found, having probably occurred in Northamptoushire, the baptism of his daughter Dorothy was. Some entries of the surname in the records aforesaid are followed by the word "generosus," indicating the rank of the family; and the inquisition upon the death of the William Bedell who is called "of Moldesworth" in Camden's Visitation of Huntingdonshire, printed by the Camden Society, identifies him as at one time styled "of Catworth Magna." So the paternal line of Dorothy, the mother of the first Lewis Burwell, can be traced to a John Bedell of Wollaston, Northamptonshire, who died in 1485, with whom the pedigree in Camden's Visitation starts. The inquisition mentions several sons of William Bedell, besides Silvester, his heir, who alone is mentioned in the Visitation, and, among them, Henry Bedell, who is called "brother" in Edward Burwell's will; and the name of the last wife of William was Elizabeth, the Visitation calling his wife Bridget Power of Northamptonshire.

Blaydes's Genealogia Bedfordiensis has extracts from parish records relating to the Burwells, from which we find that Edward had the following children, the word "gent." appearing in each entry after the father's name:

EDWARD, bapt. at Houghton Conquest, Apr. 14, 1616, bu. at  Ampthill, Mch. 4, 1620,
DOROTHY, bapt. Ampthill, June 24, 1618, perhaps m. (???) Woodington,  as Elizabeth Vaulx conveyed land to her "kinsmen" John  and Charles Woodington about 1657,
ELIZABETH, bapt. Ampthill, February 25, 1620, probably m. Robert Vaulx or Vause, of London and some time of Virginia, merchant, who made a power of attorney to his "brother" Lewis Burwell, and whose wife about 1656 is called Elizabeth, 
LEWIS, bapt. at Ampthill, Mch. 5, 1621, the first of the name in Virginia,
GEORGE, bapt. at Ampthill, May 17, 1624,
EDWARD, bapt. at Ampthill, Feb. 19, 1625.

The will of Edward Burwell was nuncupative, as follows:

"Oct. 18, 1626, Directions taken from my brother Burwell being upon his sick bed," desired that his children be brought up in the fear of God, left his whole estate to his wife Dorothy, desired his sister Sheafe to take his eldest daughter, and keep her as servant, and his sister Wingate to take his daughter Elizabeth, entreats Lord Bruce to consider his faithful service to him, his brother Wingate to be overseer, and with him his brother Henry Beadles (sic) and Mr. Edward Blofield: Witnesses, John Orpin Clerke (clerk?) and Edward Wingate. Letters of administration were issued to Dorothy, the widow, on Nov. 9, 1626. Probably this Edward Burwell was the one baptized at Toddington, Aug. 24, 1579, described as son of Edward; and, while possibly the son of another wife, was no doubt the son of the Edward Burwell, called "Edmund" in one copy, who is mentioned in the Visitation of Bedfordshire aforesaid as having married Jane, daughter of Edmond Wingate of Sharpenhoe, by his wife Mary, dau. of Wm. Belfield (Qu. the same name as "Blofield" in the will?). The "sister Wingate" in the will was Jane Burwell, married at Maulden, Aug. 25, 1619, to Edward Wingate; she is called in the Visitation the daughter of Edw'd Burwell of Harlington, County Bedford, and that her mother was a Wingate appears from George Button's will, dated Dec. 4, 1618, before Jane's marriage, mentioning his "brother Wingate's niece Jane Burwell." "Edward Burwell, gent.," apparently this Jane's father, and Lewis's grandfather, was buried at Ampthill, Nov. 19, 1620. Can we doubt that he was the one who is named in the Charter dated May 30, 1609, commonly called "the Second Charter," to the Virginia Company?

The tombstone over the first Lewis Burwell says "descended from the ancient family of the Burwells of the counties of Bedford and Northampton in England, who nothing more worthy in his birth than virtuous in his life," etc. The family of his father-in-law, Higginson, I have not succeeded in tracing, although it is described as "ancient." Burwell's widow Lucy, by her third husband, Philip Ludwell, who had been Governor of Carolina, had (see New England Hist. and Geneal. Register, Vol. XXXIII.) a daughter, who m. Daniel Parke of Virginia, killed while Governor of the Leeward Islands, and a son Philip, of the Virginia Council, who m. Hannah Harrison. Allowing for step-relations helps us to explain Governor Spotswood's complaint that the Council embraced too many of one family. He says in one of his published Letters that six out of the ten members were related to Ludwell, who, as has been shown above, was step-uncle of the Burwells; and, on Mch. 9, 1713, probably having in mind some persons like Nathaniel Harrison, whose brother had married a Burwell, declares: "The greater part of the present Council are related to the Family of the Burwells. . . . If Mr. Bassett and Mr. Berkeley should take their places, there will be no less than seven so near related that they will go off the Bench whenever a Cause of the Burwells come to be tryed."

The second Lewis Burwell by Abigail Smith (see notes on the Bacon family), his first wife, had according to her tombstone four sons and six daughters. They were probably as follows, the parents' marriage not likely to have taken place before 1671, Nathaniel Bacon, in his will dated Mch. 15, 1691-2, naming those then living:

JANE BURWELL, probably died before Mrs. Bassett's birth,  bu. near her brothers Lewis and Bacon (see Bp. Meade's account of tombs at Carter's Creek), not named in Nathaniel Bacon's will,
JOANNA BURWELL, b. 1675 (?), called "eldest daughter" on her husband's tomb, meaning probably eldest surviving, d. Oct. 7, 1727, in her 53rd year, m. Nov. 28, 1693, William Bassett (see notes on that family),
ELIZABETH BURWELL, d. Monday (month blank) 30, 1734, over 50 (last part of the year of her age illegible,--I suggest in 57th year), m. Benjamin Harrison (see notes on that family),
BACON BURWELL, not named as one of the children then living in Nathaniel Bacon's will, buried at Carter's Creek,
NATHANIEL BURWELL, b. 1680 or 1681, called "eldest son" on his tomb, probably meaning eldest surviving, will dated Aug. 20, 1721, d. 1721, in his 41st year, m. Elizabeth, dau. of Robert Carter, she afterwards m. George Nicholas, M.D. (see notes on the Armistead family),


Lewis Burwell, Pres. of the Council of Virginia, d. before Mch., 1772, m. Mary, dau. of Francis Willis,

Lewis Burwell, eldest son by said wife, living 1772 (see Hening's Statutes),
Rebecca Burwell, m. Jaqueline Ambler, their dau. m. Chief Justice Marshall, others,

Carter Burwell, of "The Grove," m. Lucy Grymes,

Nathaniel Burwell, of "Carter Hall," Clarke Co., Va., who m., 1st, Susanna Grymes, and, 2nd, Lucy, widow of Geo. W. Baylor, dau. of Mann Page of "Rosewell,"
perhaps others,

Robert Burwell, of Isle of Wight Co., d. in or after 1769, m. about 1742, acc. to Page's Genealogy of the Page Family in Virginia, 2nd edition, Sally, step-sister of Pres. Nelson of the Virginia Council, and of Secretary Nelson of the Council,

Nathaniel Burwell, of Lancaster Co., m. Miss Wormeley,
Frances Burwell, m. (1st. w. of) Gov. John Page,
Elizabeth Burwell, m. William Nelson, Pres. of the Council of Virginia, and was mother of, among others, Thomas Nelson, Signer of the Declaration of Independence,

LEWIS BURWELL, b. 1682 (?), d. Sep. 16, 1696 (probably the correct year, but Bp. Meade says 1676), in his 15th year, which is more likely than 5th year, for he is mentioned in Nathaniel Bacon's will between Nathaniel and James, as among the children then living, and there could have been but one Lewis by the first wife, to make the number of four sons, One daughter, died before Mch. 15, 1691-2, the date of Nathaniel Bacon's will,
LUCY BURWELL, d. (Meade) Dec. 16, 1716, in 33rd year, m. Dec. 1, 1704, Edmund Berkeley, member of the Council,
MARTHA BURWELL, probably the young lady with whom Gov. Nicholson fell madly in love, swearing that if she married any one else, he would cut the throat of the bridegroom, the minister, and the justice who gave the license, the result of the matter
being his removal from office, m. Henry Armistead (see notes on that family),
JAMES BURWELL, b. 1690 (?), whose tombstone says that he d. Oct. 6, 1718, in his 29th year, his own will dated Sep. 6, 1718, m. Mary Armistead (see notes on that family), but she may have been a 2nd wife,

Nathaniel Bacon Burwell, d. in or before Nov., 1769,

James Burwell (see Hening's Statutes),
perhaps others,

Lucy Burwell.

By his 2nd wife, Martha, dau. of John Lear, a Councillor, and widow of William Cole, Burwell had two sons and eight daughters, of whom a son and two daughters survived him. Apparently both of these two daughters, whose names I do not know, had died before James Burwell made his will, unless one of them was Judith, wife of George Dudly, she being called "sister" by Burwell, but she may have been sister of his wife.

The son could have been no other than the Lewis Burwell named in James Burwell's will. He was the one who resided at "Kingsmill" or "King's Mill," and d. in or after 1736, and is said to have married an Armistead, probably the "sister Martha Burwell" of James Burwell's will, and to have had two sons, viz.:

LEWIS BURWELL, of "Kingsmill," d. 1784 (4 Munford's Rep.), m. Frances, dau. of Edwin Thacker, entail of her lands being docked (Hening's Statutes, Vol. VI.), and was father of, among others, Thacker Burwell, who m. Mary Armistead, and had William Armistead Burwell (private secretary to Thomas Jefferson, President of the United States) and Edwin Thacker Burwell, who d. s. p.,--William Armistead Burwell, d. 1821, was grandfather of Miss Lettie M. Burwell of Bedford City, Va.,
ARMISTEAD BURWELL, see The Standard, published in Richmond, of June 18, 1881.

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