Standing in Phillip’s Shadow

I have some parting thoughts I wanted to share as I take my leave from Teignmouth. I’ve had an eerie feeling that I’ve been working in the shadow of Phillip of the Isles of Shoals. While the timeframe of this pedigree is after Phillip would have come to America the line has some hallmarks that make it unique in my mind.

The line includes four Philip Babbs with the unusual spelling of Philip with one “l”. It is, of course, the name of the 3rd son of Phillip of the Isles of Shoals. I always found it curious that he chose to give his son a variation of his name.

The name is so unique in England that about of nearly 15,000 people it only occurs 7 times prior to the year 1800. 4 of the 7 are linked to this one pedigree. A 5th will likely eventually be linked in Exeter as the family made its way there. The other two occurrences belong to a Barnstaple Pedigree which I’ve yet to get to in my travels across Devon.

Additionally, the pedigree contains 8 Edwards of the 17 total that appear before 1800. The name Edward likely won’t be familiar to you. But there is a book I came across in the Portsmouth, NH library while researching the Isles of Shoals. It’s called “And who was there? The People at Isles of Shoals in the 1600’s” by Ruth G. Stimson. The author notes that an Edward Babb was there and absent the presence of his wife in 1661.

We have no other reference to this Edward and I’ve always hoped that he might help unlock the key of Phillip’s ancestry. Sadly, Ruth did not cite her sources and to date I’ve never seen the document she refers to. We don’t believe him to be one of Phillip’s children, so it’s possibly his brother or father, etc.

It doesn’t take much to imagine how this might have worked though. Teignmouth is a coastal city and Phillip, who owned his own boat, would have sailed all up and down the coast regularly. He would have married Marie Plumlie in the city where her family lived, Dartmouth.

Dartmouth and Teignmouth are just one river away from each other and an easy sail of just about 13 miles (21 km).

Dartmouth & Teignmouth, Devon (Courtesy of Bing Maps)

This is still all speculation, but it looks like a promising place to conduct a Y-DNA test.

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