Richard Blood - Family Relationships Studies

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Date: [unknown] [unknown]
Location: Ruddington, Nottinghamshire, Englandmap
Surnames/tags: Blood PGM
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This free space page is for additional research information regarding the origins of the English Bloods of Ruddington, Nottinghamshire who emigrated to the Massachusetts Bay Colony in the late 1630s, primarily concerning Richard Blood and his probable siblings Robert Blood and John Blood.

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Spoke too soon. Found one last will at the Borthwick Institute and it was a biggie. Will of Richard Blood of Ruddington, dated 27 Jul 1581. Turns out he was the father of James, Robert, and Edmund, and probably of two of the women named in his will as well. So, assuming I'm right and Richard the immigrant was indeed the son of Richard Blood, Sr. of Ruddington, then I've got a clean paternal line back to this new Richard's birth, which I estimate was about 1507. Take that, Richard Deane Harris.
posted by Garry Blood
edited by Garry Blood
That's a great and amazing find!
posted by T Stanton
I’ve now exhausted the supply of previously unknown wills for the Ruddington Bloods, as well as the Bloods further afield in Nottinghamshire. The one person conspicuously absent is James. I really expected him to be an uncle of Richard Blood the immigrant. He is definitely not -- Richard's father Richard had no brothers named James. I hoped he’d be a son of one of Richard's father Richard's brothers, and therefore a first cousin. So far as I can tell he is not -- we can rule out as James' fathers either Richard's brother John (he had a son James, but that son was still a minor in 1635) or Richard' brother Robert (he was still unmarried well after James' year of birth) and Richard's youngest brother Edward is never heard from again after 1598. I've even considered second cousins, but Richard's father Robert had only one brother (also named James), and that brother produced only one child, a daughter.

The autosomal analysis indicates that, despite the norm that on average and in general the atDNA can't be useful that far back, that James-Richard is an exception and the atDNA is either showing a valid echo of a close family relationship between the two men or this is a one-in-a-billion anomaly. Because the atDNA, despite the distance, indicates a close relationship between a descendant of James and two different descendants (from different present-day families) of Richard. So let's take that at face value and accept for the moment that, through pure random chance or modern miracle or whatever, the atDNA has preserved the genetic evidence of a relationship that must have been closer than first cousin. Meaning father-son; brothers; or uncle-nephew. As already established, father-son is impossible and uncle-nephew we now know is impossible. Even first cousins appears extraordinarily unlikely.

I did even consider the possibility that James was a much older brother of Richard (and therefore also of John and Robert). That would imply he was the only known surviving child of Richard's marriage to Joan Blood. This would comport perfectly well with the will of Richard's uncle James in 1604, in which Richard had as yet no male heirs. As James wasn't born until 1605 at the earliest, this still works. Joan then died sometime soon after her last court appearance in Jan 1615 in the case of Tatnell v. Blood, and Richard remarried in short order to an unknown sister of William Lakin, who bore Richard, John, and Robert. In addition to not contradicting James Blood's will of 1604, this also means James Blood, Jr.'s reference to John Blood as "my unkle John Blood" should perhaps be taken at face value -- that John really was James' father's brother. This hypothesis would explain why Robert and John lived initially in Lynn with Richard and not with James in Concord -- Richard, John, and Robert were full brothers so Richard took them under his wing. Finally, it would also explain the complete lack of interaction between James Blood and the sons of William Lakin in the MBC -- James was not of Lakin blood; his brothers were.

However, the wording of the contingency clause to "all the children of Richard Blood, Sr." in William Lakin's 1633 will is a serious problem for this hypothesis, and probably fatal to it. Not matter how you parse it, "all the children of" would have included James as well if he was in fact a child of Richard by Joan Blood. Yet William stipulates that Richard's children (remember, he says "all the children") will only inherit once they have reached the age at which his own sons would have inherited, which was 23 years old. This strongly implies that all of Richard's children were below that age in 1633. But in 1633 James was at least 27 years old. Had he been included among Richard's children then William should have either excluded him or should have pointed out that the stipulation did not apply to him and/or only applied to the minor children. Legally speaking, if James was intended as a beneficiary of the will, then William Lakin should have identified him by name, as that was the convention of the day for bequests to adults. In my view that right there is enough to reject this hypothesis.

But now we're right back to the beginning. If they can't be brothers either, and barring the lost Edward Blood being James' father (which is by no means impossible, just not likely), then I'm afraid James and Richard were probably at best very distant relations -- second cousins is probably out at this point, so we'd be well into third cousins territory at the closest. I don't even know any of my second cousins, and I very much doubt I'd view third cousins as family if I met them. Yet James must have taken John and Robert in for probably at least four years when they moved from Lynn to Concord. So we have evidence that they must have been close family, yet countervailing evidence that they could not have been close family.

The more I dig, the more distant James gets. We may have to accept that we will never know where he fits in, if at all.

posted by Garry Blood
edited by Garry Blood
This is the evidence I've accumulated for the Richard Blood of Ruddington found in the 1633 Lakin Will and referenced by Douglas Richardson in 1995. By tracing his distinctive cross-in-circle mark (the only such mark I've ever seen used in Nottinghamshire) I feel confident in concluding that he is the same Richard Blood listed in the marriage bond of Anne Blood of Ruddington in 1611, all the way through to his last appearance as a churchwarden for St Mary's Chapel Ruddington in 1637. I am confident that I am in "beyond a reasonable doubt" territory in assigning him as the father of later emigrants Richard, John, and Robert Blood. While the direct evidence is sparse, the circumstantial evidence is extensive and overlapping. At this point, if it were to turn out he was not their father, I think I'd have an almost insurmountable task trying to explain away all the circumstantial evidence saying he was. But no matter how you cut it, James Blood is out. He cannot be the father of Richard, Robert, or John, nor can he be their brother. There was definitely an on-going relationship between the Ruddington Bloods and the Notthingham Bloods, and I have little doubt they were the two most substantial branches of a wider Nottinghamshire Blood family, but James as a Nottingham Blood was probably at best a cousin, perhaps even a fairly distant one. That's not to say they didn't know each other, however. I think they either knew or knew of each other in Nottinghamshire, saw themselves as [extended] family, and in all likelihood probably emigrated to the Massachusetts Bay Colony together. Once in the MBC, there is strong circumstantial evidence Robert and John had a relationship with James Blood, but only after the brothers moved to Concord from Lynn in about 1649. There is no evidence, circumstantial or otherwise, that Richard ever had any dealings with James again once in the colony.
posted by Garry Blood
edited by Garry Blood