Echo of the Past documents my journey in rediscovering my roots after my last computer was destroyed and I lost the 10,000 names on my family tree.

I'm an ethnic mutt. My background is varied and the world is small; it's likely that my research will help somebody, somewhere, so please feel free to use me as a source if need be.

Feedback is more than welcome, and I read any and all comments I get. I'm also up for trading links. If you're interested, email me at: PrettySiren@gmail.com with "link request" as the subject line. (Genealogy and history sites/blogs only please.)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Unexpected Find: Regicide, Again

As previously posted, I lost every bit of my extensive family tree when my last computer completely died/exploded. So, this blog is sort of chronicling my rediscovery, as it were, finding people I've found years ago all over again. And you know what? I'm just as delighted as I was back in the day.

But, imagine my surprise when I come across a new find! Today, I was able to trace my Whaley line backwards and I found a surprising connection, historically speaking: they're Cromwells.

The Whaleys

Richard Whaley (born c. 1569) married Frances Cromwell (born August 5, 1675) around 1609. Together, they had seven children; I descend through them form their son, Major General Edward Whaley, the regicide.

The Regicide

Of course, when I saw sources affixing "regicide" to his name, I immediately knew he signed King Charles' execution warrant, given the time he was born. (Further research verified this.) However, I found it strange that my 10th great-grandfather would be signing the death warrant of my 13th great-uncle. It's not the first incident though. It was merely history repeating itself, in a way. In the previous century, Elizabeth I, my 1st cousin, 15 times removed, signed the death warrant of Charles's grandmother, Queen Mary of Scotland; Mary was my great-grandma's (and great-grandpa's -- but that's another story) great-great-great-great-grandma (plus several other greats, but I'm simplifying).

In genealogy, I find events go in circles: circumstances, birth dates, death dates. I was born on July 28. Many of my relatives were either born that day or died that day, which brings me to...

The Cromwells

As I said, Edward Whaley married Frances Cromwell. Her great-grandmother was Thomas Cromwell's sister. Thomas Cromwell was, incidentally, executed on my birthday on the orders of my my great-great-great (plus like twelve other greats) uncle, King Henry VIII (I descend from Margaret Tudor).

Interestingly, Edward Whaley was a prominent member of Oliver Cromwell's inner circle: he was also something like his third cousin (by marriage), twice removed.



Edward's descendants married into a line of family always listed as "Crapper" in genealogy databases. By modern standards, and possibly old standards as well, that is a rather unfortunat-sounding last name (no offense to any Crappers out there!). However, Edward lists the surname as "Cropper" in his will; Cropper seems to be a more likely name. Especially when you take into account the fact that the name "Crapper" can't hardly be traced back.


Again, families go in circles. Especially in England. Yes, if you can trace yourself back to Tudor England, you're everyone's cousin. It should be noted that Thomas Cromwell's grandmother was a close cousin of Henry VIII. And thus, the circle just really never, ever ends.

And that's all I have to say on the matter tonight, but it's definitely something to think about -- I think.

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