Friday, December 10, 2010

Our Family's Colonial Era, Part XI

by Glenn N. Holliman

Some 17th Century Holymans - Who Were They?

Most of us reading this blog are descendants from Christopher Holyman (Holliman, etc.) who was born in England, immigrated in 1650 to Jamestown with a person named Judith, presumed to be his sister, both from either Bedford or Tring, England. Judith disappears from the story, but we know Christopher, Sr. died in Isle of Wight County, Virginia in 1691, having prospered as a planter.

In other blogs, I have shared research by others on Thomas Holeman who in 1635 purchased land at Martin's Hundred, south of Jamestown. There was also one Robert Hollman, who in March 1635 owned land in Henrico County, along the James River. Then there is John Holyman who died in Southampton, Virginia in 1650, a possible brother of our Christopher Holyman and the above Thomas Holeman.

There are still more Hollimans!

Beside the descendants of Christopher Holliman, Sr., other Hollimans also were arriving in the New World. Here is a list I have put together so far, and of course, welcome information, additions and clarification.

1653 - Another Judith Holyman and a second Christopher Holyman arrived three years after our Christopher Holyman Sr. and the original Judith Holyman stepped ashore at Jamestown. Most genealogists believe they were relatives, perhaps a son, a daughter or a mother?

1656 - On April 25, 1656 one William Holliman arrived, transported courtesy of Thomas Rolfe. Who was Thomas Rolfe? None other than the son of John Rolfe and his famous wife, Pocahontas, the daughter of Powhatan, chief of the tribes when Jamestown was founded. goodness....By 1658, William Holliman was a land owner. All this from Nell Nugent, Volume 1, pages 328 and 377, Cavaliers and Pioneers.

Above in this 1994 photograph, my son, Christopher S. Holliman and my nephew, Bryan Payne, pose at Jamestown in front of the statue of Pocahontas. Both are direct descendants from their multi-great grandfather, Christopher Holyman, Sr., who landed at this site in 1650.

1658 - February 26, one John Hollman transported by John Dorrant. A Holliman simply slightly misspelled?

1659 - How about some indentured servants, poor people who bought their passage to Virginia in exchange for years of work? Labor to work tobacco fields was very scarce in the colony. There was Jane Hollyman, unknown family, who on September 10th was ordered to serve her master an extra year at the end of her indenture for running away. This freedom loving female Hollyman had escaped for six months from one William Cox. The county was York, Virginia. Interesting, our Christopher Holliman, Sr. was transported in 1650 by one John Cox. Relationship?

1675 and 1681 - The names of Thomas Hollyman pop up twice, both times in Lancaster County, Virginia as indentured servants. Are they the same person or two named Thomas Hollyman? The second in 1681 is listed as a servant of Lt. Colonel John Carter, ah ha, of the famous Carter family. Later the Carters will cease using indentured servants and instead utilize African slaves. This John Carter will die early eventually leaving the entire family estate to Robert "King" Carter who will become the wealthiest man in Colonial Virginia, acquiring over 300,000 acres and 1,000 slaves. This John Carter got his start in Isle of Wight County in the 1640s, the same country were our direct great grandparents would put down roots.

For citations on Jane and the two Thomas Hollymans, go to the Immigrant Servants Database on the web. Citations in original records are given. A very neat web site where one can cross check numerous family trails.

From whence did these Hollymans come? Bedford or Tring, England? Some other part of the England? Are these distant cousins? Perhaps, probably, perhaps. Joe Parker has identified even more Hollimans who lived in Virginia in the second half of the 17th Century. So there are more stories to tell.

More on Colonial Virginia and the Family of Christopher Holyman, Sr. in the next post....

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