Nielsen Hayden genealogy

Robert Montfort


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Generation: 1

  1. 1.  Robert Montfort was born , of Church Bickenhall, Warwickshire, England.

    Robert married Mary Stapleton. (daughter of (Unknown husband of Margaret Stapleton) and Margaret Stapleton) [Group Sheet]

    1. 2. Katherine Montfort  Descendancy chart to this point died 7 Dec 1498.

Generation: 2

  1. 2.  Katherine Montfort Descendancy chart to this point (1.Robert1) died 7 Dec 1498.

    Katherine married George Booth Bef Jan 1473. George (son of William Booth and Maud Dutton) was born Abt 1445, of Dunham Massey, Bucklow, Cheshire, England; died 21 Mar 1484. [Group Sheet]

    1. 3. William Booth  Descendancy chart to this point was born 1 Jun 1473, of Dunham Massey, Bucklow, Cheshire, England; died 9 Nov 1519.

Generation: 3

  1. 3.  William Booth Descendancy chart to this point (2.Katherine2, 1.Robert1) was born 1 Jun 1473, of Dunham Massey, Bucklow, Cheshire, England; died 9 Nov 1519.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate death: 11 Nov 1519

    William married Ellen Montgomery. Ellen (daughter of John Montgomery) died Aft 18 Nov 1523. [Group Sheet]

    1. 4. Joan Booth  Descendancy chart to this point was born Abt 1500; died Aft 5 Nov 1545.

Generation: 4

  1. 4.  Joan Booth Descendancy chart to this point (3.William3, 2.Katherine2, 1.Robert1) was born Abt 1500; died Aft 5 Nov 1545.


    Also called Jane Booth.

    Joan married Thomas Holford Aft 28 Jun 1539. Thomas (son of John Holford and Margery Brereton) was born , of Holford, Cheshire, England; died 24 Sep 1569. [Group Sheet]

    1. 5. Dorothy Holford  Descendancy chart to this point

Generation: 5

  1. 5.  Dorothy Holford Descendancy chart to this point (4.Joan4, 3.William3, 2.Katherine2, 1.Robert1)

    Dorothy married John Bruen. John (son of John Bruen and Mary Oteley) was born Abt 1509, of Bruen Stapleford in Tarvin, Cheshire, England; died 14 May 1587; was buried 15 May 1587. [Group Sheet]

    1. 6. John Bruen  Descendancy chart to this point was born 1560; died 18 Jan 1626, Bruen Stapleford in Tarvin, Cheshire, England; was buried 23 Jan 1626, Tarvin, Cheshire, England.
    2. 7. Katherine Bruen  Descendancy chart to this point was born Bef 13 Feb 1579, Bruen Stapleford in Tarvin, Cheshire, England; died 31 May 1601; was buried 3 Jun 1601, Childwall, Cheshire, England.

Generation: 6

  1. 6.  John Bruen Descendancy chart to this point (5.Dorothy5, 4.Joan4, 3.William3, 2.Katherine2, 1.Robert1) was born 1560; died 18 Jan 1626, Bruen Stapleford in Tarvin, Cheshire, England; was buried 23 Jan 1626, Tarvin, Cheshire, England.

    Other Events:

    • Baptised: 19 Sep 1567


    He was a Puritan whose piety and iconoclasm (he personally destroyed a great deal of church art and stained glass) was celebrated in a hagiographic biography of him written by William Hinde, husband of Margaret Fox, sister to Bruen's second wife Anne Fox.

    "According to Hinde, it was the death of Bruen's father in 1587 that prompted a radical transformation in Bruen's lifestyle. Whether because of a spiritual crisis or because of the financial constraints imposed by his new responsibilities towards eleven siblings, including his sister Katherine Bruen (to become famous in 1601 because of her putative deathbed loss of faith), Bruen imposed a strict code of piety on the household. He began by disparking the estate and suppressing hunting and gaming, and subsequently enforced a culture of discipline on family, servants, and tenants alike. This not only involved prayers seven times daily but also attendance at both morning and evening sermons on Sundays, usually without departing from the church in between. The knowledge of scripture among even his illiterate household servants became legendary: Hinde drew particular attention to 'Old Robert', Robert Pashfield (fl. c. 1600), servant, whose familiarity with the Bible was such that he could cite chapter and verse of almost any scriptural text, despite his inability to read. Bruen also suppressed the drinking, dancing, and sport associated with the annual festivities of the St Andrew's day wakes that he (and Hinde) regarded as popish and profane." [Oxford Dictionary of National Biography]

    "BRUEN, JOHN (1560-1625), puritan layman, was the son of a Cheshire squire whose family had long been settled at Bruen Stapleford, and is believed to have given its name to the township. There had been a succession from the middle of the thirteenth century. The elder John Bruen of Bruen Stapleford was thrice married. His union with Anne, the sister of Sir John Done, was childless, but his second wife brought him fourteen children, of whom Katharine, afterwards the wife of William Brettargh, and John, who, although not the eldest born, became by survivorship his heir, were remarkable for the fervour of their puritanism. John was in his tender years sent to his uncle Dutton of Dutton, where for three years he was taught by the school-master James Roe. The Dutton family had by charter the control of the minstrels of the county. Young Bruen became an expert dancer. 'At that time,' he said, 'the holy Sabbaths of the Lord were wholly spent, in all places about us, in May-games and May-poles, pipings and dancings, for it was a rare thing to hear of a preacher, or to have one sermon in a year.' When about seventeen he and his brother Thomas were sent as gentlemen-commoners to St. Alban Hall, Oxford, where they remained about two years. He left the university in 1579, and in the following year was married by his parents to a daughter of Mr. Hardware, who had been twice mayor of Chester. Bruen at this time keenly enjoyed the pleasures of the chase, and, in conjunction with Ralph Done, 'kept fourteen couple of great mouthed dogs.' On the death of his father in 1587 his means were reduced; he cast off his dogs, killed the game, and disparked the land. His children were brought up strictly, and his choice of servants fell upon the sober and pious. One of these, Robert Pashfield, or 'Old Robert,' though unable to read or write, had acquired so exact a knowledge of the Bible, that he could 'almost always' tell the book and chapter where any particular sentence was to be found. The old man had a leathern girdle, which served him as a memoria technica, and was marked into portions for the several books of the Bible, and with points and knots for the smaller divisions. Bruen in summer rose between three and four, and in winter at five, and read prayers twice a day. His own seasons for prayer were seven times daily. He removed the stained glass in Tarvin Church, and defaced the sculptured images. On the Sunday he walked from his house, a mile distant, to the church, and was followed by the greater part of his servants, and called upon such of his tenants as lived on the way, so that when he reached the church it was at the head of a goodly procession. He rarely went home to dinner after morning prayers, but continued in the church till after the evening service. He maintained a preacher at his own house, and afterwards for the parish. Bruen's house became celebrated, and a number of 'gentlemen of rank became desirous of sojourning under his roof for their better information in the way of God, and the more effectual reclaiming of themselves and their families.' Perkins, the puritan divine, called Bruen Stapleford, 'for the practice and power of religion, the very topsail of all England.' His wife died suddenly, and after a time he married the 'very amiable and beautiful' Ann Fox, whom he first met at a religious meeting in Manchester. For a year they dwelt at her mother's house at Rhodes, near Manchester. He then returned to Stapleford, and again his house became the abode of many scions of gentility. Bruen's second wife died after ten years of married life, and the widower broke up his household with its twenty-one boarders and retired to Chester, where he cleared the debt of his estate, saw some of his children settled, and maintained the poor of his parish by the produce of two mills in Stapleford, whither he returned with his third wife, Margaret. He had an implicit belief in special providences, 'judgments,' witchcraft, &c. He kept a hospitable house, and was kind and charitable to the poor of his neighbourhood and of Chester. He refused to drink healths even at the high sheriff's feast. Towards the end of his life his prayers were twice accompanied by 'ravishing sights.' He died after an illness, which was seen to be mortal, in 1625, at the age of 65. There is a portrait of him in Clark's 'Marrow of Ecclesiastical History.' This has been re-engraved by Richardson. Among the Harleian MSS. is a compilation by him entitled 'A godly profitable collection of divers sentences out of Holy Scripture, and variety of matter out of several divine authors.' These are commonly called his cards, and are fifty-two in number. The same collection contains the petition of his son, Calvin Bruen, of Chester, mercer, respecting the treatment he received for visiting Prynne when he was taken through Chester to imprisonment at Carnarvon Castle. The life of John Bruen was not eventful, and he is chiefly notable as an embodiment of the puritan ideal of a pious layman." [William Edward Armytage Axon, Dictionary of National Biography 1885-1900]

    John married Anne Fox Aft Jan 1597. Anne (daughter of William Fox and Margaret Orrell) was born Abt 1581; died Bef 29 Dec 1606; was buried 29 Dec 1606. [Group Sheet]

    1. 8. Obadiah Bruen  Descendancy chart to this point was born Bef 25 Dec 1606; died Aft 1679, Newark, Essex, New Jersey; was buried , Fairmount Cemetery, Newark, Essex, New Jersey.

  2. 7.  Katherine Bruen Descendancy chart to this point (5.Dorothy5, 4.Joan4, 3.William3, 2.Katherine2, 1.Robert1) was born Bef 13 Feb 1579, Bruen Stapleford in Tarvin, Cheshire, England; died 31 May 1601; was buried 3 Jun 1601, Childwall, Cheshire, England.

    Other Events:

    • Baptised: 13 Feb 1579, Bruen Stapleford in Tarvin, Cheshire, England


    From the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography:

    Her short life was dominated by her illustrious elder brother, the godly gentleman John Bruen, who had care of Katherine and ten of her siblings, bringing them up in an atmosphere of strict household discipline and rigorous religious observance. About 1599 Katherine married another of the self-professed godly, William Brettergh of Brettergh Holt, near Liverpool, with whom she had one child, Anne. The two shared an extraordinarily pious lifestyle at Little Woolton in Childwall, Lancashire, reading at least eight chapters of the Bible every day and hearing two sermons on Sundays whenever possible, and she appears to have stiffened his resolve in withstanding the hostility, mockery, and harassment of the parish's strong Roman Catholic minority, organized by a local seminary priest, Thurstan Hunt, and the lord of the manors of Speke and Garston, Edward Norris. In turn, William Brettergh's attempt as high constable of West Derby hundred to apprehend recusants within the parishes of Huyton and Childwall in May 1600 provoked not only a full-scale riot but the maiming of Brettergh's cattle on two separate occasions over the following months.

    However, it is Katherine's premature and agonizing death rather than her short life which brought her most fame, and which provoked the biographies that provide virtually all the evidence of her godly lifestyle. At the age of twenty-two she succumbed to an unknown illness, and on her deathbed suffered from a terrible crisis of faith, during which she raged against God's unmercifulness and threw her Bible repeatedly to the floor. She died on 31 May 1601. Her agonies formed the centrepiece of a polemical account of her embattled life appended to the two sermons preached by William Harrison and William Leigh at her funeral in Childwall church on 3 June 1601, published together in 1602 as Death's Advantage Little Regarded, of which five editions had appeared by 1617 and a further two by 1641. Harrison in particular attempted to explain her deathbed anguish as the consequence of a diabolical assault on her virtue rather than a providential punishment for sin and hypocrisy. As a result her death became not only a gigantic struggle between God and Satan for her soul, but also, through a pamphlet exchange (of which the Catholic side has unfortunately not survived), a furious debate between Romanists and puritans over which religion could promise the more merciful death. From this perspective the conspicuous absence of any reference to Katherine's deathbed crisis in William Hinde's elaborate biography of her older brother, published in 1641, seems striking, perhaps even deliberately evasive.

    From the 1885-1900 Dictionary of National Biography:

    Her biographers are indignant at the imputation that she died despairing. She was buried at Childwall Church on Wednesday, 3 June, as appears from the title of the little book which forms the chief authority as to her life: Death's Advantage little Regarded, or the Soule's Solace against Sorrow, preached in two funerall sermons at Childwall, in Lancashire, at the buriall of Mistris Katherine Brettergh, 3 June 1601. The one by William Harrison, the other by William Leygh, B.D., whereunto is annexed the christian life and godly death of the said gentlewoman, London, 1601. There is a portrait of her in Clarke's second part of the Marrow of Ecclesiastical History, book ii., London, 1675, p. 52, from which it seems that her puritanism did not forbid a very elaborate ruff. The face is oval, the features refined, the hair closely confined by a sort of skull-cap, over which towers a sugarloaf hat.

    Katherine married William Brettergh. William was born Abt 1571. [Group Sheet]

Generation: 7

  1. 8.  Obadiah Bruen Descendancy chart to this point (6.John6, 5.Dorothy5, 4.Joan4, 3.William3, 2.Katherine2, 1.Robert1) was born Bef 25 Dec 1606; died Aft 1679, Newark, Essex, New Jersey; was buried , Fairmount Cemetery, Newark, Essex, New Jersey.

    Other Events:

    • Baptised: 25 Dec 1606, St. Andrew's, Tarvin, Cheshire, England
    • Alternate death: Abt 1681, Newark, Essex, New Jersey


    One of Tom Whitmore's five proven "gateway ancestors." He was a membr of the drapers' guild in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, although this does not prove that he actually worked as a draper.

    "He and his family emigrated to New England in 1640, where they lived successively at Marshfield and Gloucester, Massachusetts, and New London, Connecticut. He served as Deputy Judge for New London, 1660, Judge for New London, 1662-6, Patentee of the Royal Charter, 1662, Deputy for New London to the Connecticut Legislature, 1665-6, and Clerk for New London County Court in 1666. In 1667 he and his wife, Sarah, removed to Newark, New Jersey." [Royal Ancestry, citation details below.]

    "Obadiah Bruen was born in Bruen Stapleford, England, and immigrated to New England with his wife Sarah in 1640. He settled first at Plymouth Colony, and then at Gloucester, Massachusetts (1642), where he was town selectman (1643) and a representative to the Connecticut General Court (1643-1651). He was one of the early settlers at Pequot (later New London), Connecticut, and served as the town clerk (1651-1666) and as a representative from New London in the Connecticut General Court (1652-1666). His name is the only name from New London to appear on the royal charter for the colony of Connecticut. In 1666, he joined an association to found a colony on the Passaic River called Milford (later Newark, New Jersey). He was one of the signers of the deed to purchase land from the Indians along the Passaic River (July 11, 1667)." [Yale Indian Papers Project.]

    In 1889 his remains were re-interred in the Founders' Vault at Fairmount Cemetery.

    Obadiah married Sarah Seeley 7 May 1633, St. Martin's, Birmingham, Warwickshire, England. Sarah (daughter of William Seeley) was born Bef 22 Oct 1609; died Aft 1696. [Group Sheet]

    1. 9. Mary Bruen  Descendancy chart to this point was born Bef 12 Jun 1634; died 2 Sep 1670.

Generation: 8

  1. 9.  Mary Bruen Descendancy chart to this point (8.Obadiah7, 6.John6, 5.Dorothy5, 4.Joan4, 3.William3, 2.Katherine2, 1.Robert1) was born Bef 12 Jun 1634; died 2 Sep 1670.

    Other Events:

    • Baptised: 12 Jun 1634, St. Julian's, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England

    Mary married John Baldwin 30 Oct 1663. John was born , of Milford, New Haven, Connecticut; died Bef 21 Jun 1681; was buried 21 Jun 1681, Milford, New Haven, Connecticut. [Group Sheet]

    1. 10. Abigail Baldwin  Descendancy chart to this point was born 15 Nov 1658, Milford, New Haven, Connecticut; died Aft Jun 1701.