Who Was William Copp Born - 1589 - 1609

+5 votes

I'm looking for information about the origins and wives of William Copp of Boston.
There was a William Cope who enrolled to sail to Boston on the "Blessing" in 1635.  He was a 26 year old shoemaker.  A Richard Cope, 24yo, was also enrolled on the "Blessing."  Anderson, "Great Migration: Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635, Volume II, C-F" page 212, says there is no reason to believe that these two actually came to New England and agrees with Pope (Pillsbury Ancestry) that William Cope and the William Copp of Boston were two different men.

The first we see William Copp of Boston is in 1640. This William was the brother of Anthony Copp of Honeley, Warwickshire, who died in 1654. (I can't find a place called Honeley, but there is a parish called Honiley in Warwicksire, and I think this is the right place.)  The Honiley parish baptism registers don't start until 1754.  I can find NO documentation for William or Anthony in England, except for Anthony's Will.

Trees show William as born in 1589 or 1609 (which would be correct for the William Cope on the "Blessing"), and they show him with two wives:

  • 1. Anne Rogers, who was born ca 159x and died 1633 at Hattons (Hatton?), Warwicks  m. 1614 at Hattons, Warwicks.
  • 2. Judith/Goodeth Itchenor, who was born in 1605 at Hattons, Warwicks.,  m. 21 July 1634 at Hattons, Warwicks. (Goodeth d. Boston  25 March 1670).  

According to "British History Online," the Hatton parish burial records start in 1539 and the baptism and marriage records start in 1589, but I haven't been able to locate them online, so I can't check these marriage dates or Goodeth's baptism date.  The FamilySsearch doesn't have these registers, and the Ancestry ''Warwickshire, England, Baptisms, Marriages, and Burials, 1535-1812'' does not have entries for either marriage.  It is possible that the registers or Bishop's Transcripts on LDS microfilm, might contain this info, but I'm not in Salt Lake.

Does anyone have access to records to prove ANYTHING about William Copp's birth, marriages or wives?

WikiTree profile: William Copp
in Genealogy Help by Vic Watt G2G6 Pilot (329k points)
recategorized by Jillaine Smith

3 Answers

+1 vote
by Sherri Posey G2G4 (4.2k points)
Yes, those comments reiterate what that has been said over the years, but everything is at best secondary. Where is the evidence that the William Cope who enrolled for passage on the "Blessing" is the same person as the William Copp of Boston?  Where is the evidence of the names of his wives and his marriage dates?  That is what I am looking for.
Vic, (you know this but I'm putting it here for others who read this post)

Anderson is considered the definitive source for colonial New England immigrants and until something is found to update Anderson, we go with what Anderson concludes.
What this means is that I should edit William Copp to put references to the "Blessing" and the names of his wives in a note, stating that they are conjectural,  that they may not be correct.  And I should disconnect him from parents (with a reference in the bio) and annotate his birth date.  Right?

I'm revisiting this G2G because I'm trying the resolve the conflicting mothers on two otherwise-duplicate profiles for his daughter Ann.

While I'm here, I'd like to point out that Anderson rejected the notion that William Copp of Boston is the William Cope who enrolled for passage in 1635. The Great Migration says there is no evidence that William Cope and Richard Cope who enrolled for passage on the Blessing ever arrived in New England,[1] and further that the William Cope who enrolled on the Blessing must have been considerably younger than William Copp of Boston, as William Copp of Boston had married daughters in the 1640s.

0 votes
Found on www.freereg.org:

William Coppe m. Ann Rogers on 24 Nov 1614 at Holy Trinity Church, Hatten

William Cox (sp) m. Goodeth Itchener on 21 July 1634

John Coppe bp. 26 May 1622 Holy Trinity

Johan Coppe bp. 15 Oct. 1625 Holy Trinity

I think that the birth years for William, 1589 and 1609 are based on a age at the time of marriage - 25 years of age.  

I cannot find any burials for any Coopes. Hope that helps some, there seems to be alot of erroneous information on William floating around the internet.

0 votes
I've located a credible source that supports the 1589 birth date and that identifies Thomas Copp and Isabel Gunne as the parents of William Copp. It's an article in The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record in 1933:  "English Antecedents Of William Copp Of Copp's Hill, Boston," by Samuel Copp Worthen, NYGBR v. 64, no. 2, pages 150-152. The basis for the article is a transcription of the parish registers of Hatton parish in Warwickshire. The original parish register was "illicitly removed" between 1928 and 1931, and had not been found as of the writing of the article, but some time earlier a partial transcription had been made and deposited at the College of Arms in London. That kind of story about records that mysteriously disappeared but were providentially copied is never very satisfying, but at least in this case there's no evidence that anybody is using the information to claim aristocratic descent. The author lived in New Jersey and appears to have been an active member of NYGBR (also president of the New Jersey Genealogical Society).

I now have an electronic copy of the 1933 NYGBR article, and I'll start in on using it to edit the profiles for William and daughter Ann. The author also published lengthy articles on the descendants of William's sons David and Jonathan. I saved copies of the first installment (16 pages) of the Jonathan article (published in 1948) and the first 20 pages (covering 5 generations) of the David article (published in 1931). The descendants covered were in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Maine, and probably other places.
by Ellen Smith G2G Astronaut (1.2m points)
Although I'm not nearly done editing the profile, since this is a PGM immigrant with "disputed origins," now that the parents are validated, I'd like for William Copp to be project-protected.
Great find, Ellen. Did Anderson not cite this article ? Did he even know about it?
Anderson didn't cite the article in TGM. That omission could be explained by the fact that he wasn't yet focused on William Copp (who is first recorded in New England in 1640, although he probably arrived a year or two earlier). The TGM profile was about William Cope and Richard Cope, not about William Copp. The main focus in the TGM discussion was to establish that William Cope was not the same person as William Copp, and the age discrepancy provided an adequate basis for that (in that cultural context, a man of born in 1609 would not have had two daughters old enough to marry in 1646 and 1647).

Anderson and his team do know about the article now, because it seems to be listed in the William Copp entry in the Great Migration Directory.
Ellen, thanks for the clarification.

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