To remove or not remove the parents of Anne Woodward Estes

+10 votes

I am working on proving/disproving a Magna Carta trail from Hugh Bigod to Abraham Estes.  Abraham Estes is in the Questional Gateway Ancestor category.   I think this line breaks down on the parentage of Anne Woodward Estes, said to be a descendant of Petronella Clinton Woodward whose connection to Hugh Bigod seems pretty well documented and sourced.  What I am wondering is if my documentation and sources are good enough to support removal of the parents of Anne Woodward Estes.  Doing so would probably settle the Questionable Gateway Ancestor question for Abraham Estes as it will remove the link through which his line goes to Bigod.

Please review the section in the profile for Anne Woodard Estes under the heading "Disputed Parents" and give your thoughts on removing her parents or leaving the current association ?

WikiTree profile: Anne Estes
in Genealogy Help by David Douglass G2G6 Pilot (128k points)
edited by Keith Hathaway

3 Answers

+4 votes
Best answer
I would say to remove the parents.  I'm a descendant of Robert Eastye (aka Estes) and his wife Anne Woodward.  I've researched the line and never seen any reliable sources to indicate Anne's parentage.
by Darlene Athey-Hill G2G6 Pilot (558k points)
selected by Terry Albin

I removed John and Elizabeth as Anne's parents.  Like you I have never seen any good evidence that she was their child.  

I was thinking that by removing her relationship to the Woodward's of Warwickshire that Abraham Estes Gateway status might be answered but it just sent the trail to Hugh Bigod down a different rabbit hole.   Now the trail extends through his mother, Ellen Martin Estes.  I find this questionable as well and plan to prove or disprove this trail.

Guess we must be cousins through the Estes' ?  Have you done any research on Ellen Martins connections ?  I admit I am a bit skeptical of her "royal" bloodline.

David, I've never located any evidence for Ellen Martin's lineage as you have shown here on Wikitree.  The article by Roberta Estes brings up possibilities, but no answers.  I'll be interested to see what you can uncover in trying to prove her trail...

We are indeed cousins.  Ellen Martin is my 9th great-grandmother.  However, we have a closer connection in William Stroud (Stroud-48), my 5th great-grandfather.  Wikitree says: "173 common ancestors were found between David and Darlene within 25 generations."

Have you uploaded your DNA results to Gedmatch?  I didn't see a note on your profile.  I tried locating you as a match (to my dad, through whom my Stroud ancestry is) but you didn't show up.  I've matched several people that trace back to William Stroud and his wife.


William Stroud is my 6th great grandfather. His daughter Margaret married my 5th great grandfather William Douglas.

Ellen Martin"s line will be a bit challenging.  Lots of questionable information and need for good sources.  Possibly some confusion among the Martin family members as well.  Would love to get it sorted out.  I think Ellens royal links are questionable but we will see.

My Gedmatch kit number is F442244.
You and my dad are sharing a small (5.9cM segment); too small to know it's IBD.  You might want to add your Gedmatch ID # to your profile.  I have your ancestor Margaret in my personal database.  Bob Thrift gave me the information many years ago.  Did you ever correspond with him?  He had done a lot of research on the Stroud/Thrift lines (I descend from Margaret's sister, Mary, who married Isham Thrift).

As to the original post and Ellen Martin, I'll be interested to see what you dig up!

I added my GedMatch ID as you suggested.   The relationship finder does say we are 6th cousins 1x removed.   Ive looked into my Stroud connections although Im sure not to the depth that you have.  I did find that William Douglas served in the same company with some of the Stroud brothers during the American Revolution. William was Captian of a horse company in the NC militia and was headquartered at Stroud's  And Ive seen the Thrift connection although I havent studied it in great depth.  There is an interesting entry in William Douglas' will in reference to a Stroud connection that you may have some insight into.   

Been busy chasing down what has mostly turned out to be false "noble" connections.  Which brings me back to the Martins.  Im going to have to look into each profile separately starting with Ellen.  If I can prove or disprove her parents then I will decide if I want to go to the effort to work on the extended Martin line.   It will be interesting to see how it could affect Abraham Estes possible Gateway status.

I have another possible Gateway Ancestor in my line that I recently realized may be a Gateway.  Peter Massie (Massie-46) of New Kent, Virginia has more than one Magna Carta trial based solely on the relationship finder.  Im going to look into this further.  Do I simply add him to the Questionable Gateway category or do I need to submit him to the Magna Carta project for review first ?  It appears that you may also be related to Peter Massie through John Hussey (Hussey-188)

+5 votes

I think there are many problems with this line. 

To get to the obvious one.  In the BHO article, Parnel Clinton was daughter and co-heir for her father Thomas Clinton who died by 1336; she married John Wodard.  WikiTree says she is the same as Petronilla Clinton married John Woodward born 1454 – they were born almost 150 years apart.  The line needs to be broken here.

There is no evidence Anne (Woodward) Estes was a daughter of John Woodward of Avon Dassett, Warwickshire.  There is no evidence for any parents for her, though they almost certainly will be from Woodward family in Kent and not from away Warwickshire.  The line needs to be broken here.

Short answer – remove the parents for which there is no evidence.

by Joe Cochoit G2G6 Pilot (265k points)

Additionally, I'm pretty sure the Woodward family from Warwickshire were landed gentry with a coat of arms and were related to the Clinton family. I can't find an Eastes coat of arms. The Monyn family were the lords of the manor of Sholden. Robert's pedigree says he's a blood relative of the Duke of Modena, which is a fantastic story - was that proven with DNA?

The profession of Robert was 'mariner', which could be fisherman, pirate, merchant, ship's master and each one has a different status, his father was a fisherman.

Ultimately, Robert appears to be the a son of a poor fisherman in Kent and Anne Woodward is a daughter of a gentleman in Warwickshire so I would disconnect the parents. Its more likely that Anne was the daughter of a poor fisherman in Kent.

Joe I appreciate your answer and agree with you.  The available evidence strongly suggests that Anne was the member of the Woodward's of Kent, England and not Warwickshire.  The Woodward's of Solihul, Avon Dassett and Warwick were of some standing, had connections to Baddesley-Clinton and the Ferrers.  It is not likely one of John and Elizabeth's children would have married what we would today consider a member of the "middle class"  Like you I am in favor of removing John and Elizabeth Palmer Woodward as her parents.  If later evidence proves the relationship between John and Elizabeth to Anne, then she could be re-added
Kirk great answer.  And the story about the Estes connection to d'Este has largely been discounted although not totally disproved by DNA because no d'Este DNA has been tested.  However, autosomal DNA of existing Estes descendants do not indicate an Italian origin.  But, as you say it does make for an interesting story and it has been widely posted in Estes family histories.   But back to Anne .... I also think John and Elizabeth Palmer Woodward should be removed as her parents.  Not only does the available evidence weigh against their being her parents but common sense does as well.  One would assume that Anne who was born in Kent and not Warwickshire would have parents that are members of the Woodwards of Kent.   Most serious researchers of the Estes family consider her parents as unknown.  The ones that want to make the "royal" connection will insist that Anne of Kent, England was born to John Woodward of Warwickshire, who so happens to have ties to the Clintons and Ferrers.  The problem here is that there is no evidence to support John and Elizabeth as her parents.

If future evidence proves that Anne's parents are John and Elizabeth Palmer Woodward she can be re-added as their child.   With their removal as parents the Questionable Gateway Ancestor status of Abraham Estes will probably be settled.
+4 votes
Remove the parents for sure -- but leave "cross-links" in the narrative -- in the parents' narrative leave a note that Anne Woodward Estes (with a link) is sometimes shown, without evidence, as a daughter of these parents, and leave a sentence in Anne's narrative (with a link to the parents) that she is sometimes shown, without evidence, as their daughter.  

This will provide some protection against a future well-intentioned soul who finds the connection elsewhere in the ether and, thinking you forgot to put in the connection, links Anne and her non-parents back up!
by Jack Day G2G6 Pilot (474k points)
Thanks Jack

Great advice.  I removed her parents and did cross references in each affected profile.  Was hoping that trimming this portion of the Estes line would answer Abraham Estes' gateway status but the trail between him and Hugh Bigod resurfaced through another rabbit hole.  The fun of chasing down questionable "royal" connections will never end as long as there are clever family historians keeping the myths alive.


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