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Lois (Howard) Shipley (abt. 1658 - bef. 1698)

Lois Shipley formerly Howard
Born about in Baltimore, Anne Arundel, Marylandmap
Daughter of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
[spouse(s) unknown]
[children unknown]
Died before in Anne Arundel, Marylandmap
Profile last modified | Created 21 Jul 2009
This page has been accessed 2,620 times.
Research suggests that this person may never have existed. See the text for details.



There is no known person named Lois Howard, wife of Adam Shipley.

Research Notes


These two profiles overlap:

  • Lois Unknown is the profile for the real person who married Adam Shipley
  • Lois Howard has been the gathering profile for inaccurate information and legends about Lois. This profile should be merged with the profile for Lois Unknown.

The Legend of Lois Howard Shipley

Many genealogies (for example, Lois Howard[1][2] show the existence of Lois Howard, a daughter of Cornelius Howard, who then married Adam Shipley. Adam Shipley being the founder of a large and notable American family, Lois thus became the matriarch of this family. Regrettably, the facts do not support the legend.

Gary Boyd Roberts [3] identifies questions about Lois' ancestry in his discussion of the Shipley ancestry of Abraham Lincoln.

The evidence points to the conclusion that no such person as Lois Howard ever existed. Since she never existed, she has no links to parents, spouse, or children. However, since she lives on in many genealogies, cross references are provided below to the real Lois and her family.

The Will of Cornelius Howard

Cornelius Howard wrote his will in April 1680 and named his living children. Lois, wife of Adam Shipley, had already been married to him for several years and would go on to live for another 40 years beyond the death of Cornelius. But there is no Lois named in Cornelius will. Given that he named his children in his will, her absence is a strong indication that Cornelius had no daughter Lois.

Adam Shipley's purchase of property from Cornelius

In 1679, Cornelius Howard, Planter, transferred 100 acres of "Howard's and Porter's Range" to Adam Shipley. No deed exists showing this transfer. From this apparently the assumption arose that it was an intra-family transfer of land from Cornelius and that Adam was his son-in-law.

In 1698, Richard SHIPLEY for love and affection towards his younger brothers gave them land. To his brother Adam he gave 100 acres where their mother Lois SHIPLEY lived, part of a tract called *Howard's and Porter's Range.* [Anne Arundel land records 1H1:80] [4]

The 1707 rent rolls listed that the 100 acres of *Howard's and Porter's Range* owned by Adam SHIPLEY was part of the the tract originally patented by Cornelius Howard and Peter PORTER.[4]

Some believe she was Lois Howard, since the Howard family owned "Howard's and Porter's Range" before it was transferred to Adam in 1679 by Cornelius Howard, Planter.[5].

What happened, was that since someone couldn't find a deed of the SHIPLEYs buying the land, they speculated that it may have been inherited, and that Lois may have been a HOWARD. Someone else came along and dropped the speculation, stating it as fact she was a HOWARD. The progression was that someone then decided she must be the daughter of Cornelius HOWARD.[4]

Many early Anne Arundel deeds were burned in a courthouse fire, which is why they did not find a deed. The details of how Adam SHIPLEY acquired the land are, though, contained in a HOWARD deed that after the fire was rerecorded at the request of Ruth HOWARD, widow of Philip HOWARD.[4]

On 19 Jan. 1687 Cornelius HOWARD, son and heir of Cornelius HOWARD conveyed 500 acres of *Howard and Porters Range* to Philip HOWARD. It was stated that the parcel by survivorship descended from Peter PORTER to Cornelius HOWARD, and that Cornelius HOWARD had sold 150 acres to Lancelott TODD, and sold 100 acres to Addam SHIPLEY. [AALR 1H1:243][4]

So, although the deed from Cornelius HOWARD to Adam SHIPLEY was not rerecorded, this shows how he acquired the tract. It was not by inheritance through his wife Lois, but by a simple sale. Cornelius HOWARD died in 1680, and did not name a daughter Lois. [6]


  1. Source: #S682 Page: Database online. Data: Text: Record for Lois Howard
  2. Source: #S682 Page: Database online. Data: Text: Record for Adam Shipley
  3. Roberts, Gary Boyd; Ancestors of American Presidents. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Maryland wills 2:107-110 , Cited by "geni"
  5. Shipleys of America, I, 6
  6. [Maryland wills 2:107-110] <, Cited by "geni"

See also:

  • Source: S682 Author: Title: OneWorldTree Publication: Name: Name: The Generations Network, Inc.; Location: Provo, UT, USA;; Repository: #R32
  • Repository: R32 Name:

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Comments: 4

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Thank you all for this page. I just met a nice man, in his mid-90s, and trying to straighten out problems in his tree. This was one of them, thanks to Ancestry's "U.S. and International Marriage Records" etc. showing her last name as Howard. He wants his tree correct, and will appreciate that.
posted by Donald Howard
Unknown-287278 appears to be same person.
posted by Tim Prince
Expanded the narrative to document the non-existence of a Lois, daughter of Cornelius Howard, and to provide links to the real Lois Unknown, wife of Adam Shipley.
posted by Jack Day
I delinked Lois from Cornelius Howard and his wife as parents. It is true that Lois' husband Adam bought property from Cornelius, but there is no evidence that Lois was his daughter, or even named Howard. Too bad, because the link adds a nice ancestry!
posted by Jack Day

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Categories: No Known Connection | Uncertain Existence