Thomas Babb of Newton Abbot – The Missing Link?

Proving Phillip Babb’s (1) connection to England may come about through something we call collateral relatives. The idea behind it is that when you can’t find proof of a connection using your ancestor’s paper trail, you extend your search to their relatives, thus opening up your nets to catch more fish.

I must admit I’ve tried this approach before in relation to Phillip (1) by researching the people he knew and interacted with on the Isles of Shoals. That research was the foundation for the book Babb’s Rock. Sadly, I was unable to find any such connection using those relatives. However, this is different.

We have people from outside of Phillip’s immediate sphere of influence. We know that they are relatives, because of Y-DNA test results. The early dates on the Island show that the Immigrant Ancestor could easily be Phillip’s son or brother. While there are 127 years in between Phillip’s (1) death and this record of Thomas Babb of Newton Abbot in Newfoundland, it is the most promising lead in decades!

Today, I’m looking for that connection through the same book I referenced in the last several days, Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland. At issue is the second highlighted section for Thomas Babb of Newton Abbot. This is the rarest of records in that it provides a connection across the Atlantic in a day where records were irregular at best. You can likely imagine that relations between England and the US were strained at best in 1798, just 15 years after the American Revolution. So, this record reveals a connection between another English Colony might be the best that it gets.

Working to uncover the source documents listed for Thomas, I found that the source information is incorrect. Fortunately, the Library that holds the original manuscript has digitized the entire manuscript, which stands at 34 volumes! The page above references the 8th volume. But in actuality, no Babb is listed in that volume. Instead, it appears in volumes 9 & 10.

Here is what the transcripts have to say:

While there isn’t anything earth shattering in the text, it completely cements a connection between Thomas Babb of Newton Abbot and Newfoundland. Which, due to Y-DNA testing, in turn creates a link for the Lions of the Sea (aka Phillip Babb (1) of the Isles of Shoals, to England.

Looking back at Jean A. Sargent’s work, I find that she knew of activity in Newfoundland, but somehow it didn’t make it into her book.

More tomorrow! I need to get some sleep. #sleepydan

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