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  • Name Penelope   [1, 2, 3, 4
    Gender Female 
    Person ID I23452  Ancestry of PNH, TNH, and others | Ancestor of EK, Ancestor of TWK
    Last Modified 13 Nov 2020 

    Family Richard Stout   d. Between 9 Jun 1703 and 23 Oct 1705, Monmouth County, New Jersey Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Marriage Between 1643 and 1644  [1
     1. Alice Stout
    +2. John Stout,   b. Between 1644 and 1645, Gravesend, Long Island Find all individuals with events at this locationd. Bef 1740, Middletown, Monmouth, New Jersey Find all individuals with events at this location (Age ~ 95 years)
    +3. Sarah Stout,   b. Abt 1656, Gravesend, Long Island Find all individuals with events at this locationd. Between 18 Nov 1714 and 29 Dec 1714 (Age ~ 58 years)
    +4. David Stout,   b. 1667   d. Aft 1725, Amwell, Hunterdon, New Jersey Find all individuals with events at this location (Age > 59 years)
    Family ID F14093  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 9 Nov 2020 

  • Photos
    Penelope Stout commemorative medal, verso
    Penelope Stout commemorative medal, verso
    Penelope Stout commemorative medal
    Penelope Stout commemorative medal

  • Notes 
    • She was the first female European settler of Monmouth County, New Jersey, and also the subject of a number of variant-yet-similar tales of the circumstances of her first arrival in the New World. The version currently on Wikipedia (accessed 8 Nov 2020) can stand as typical:

      "In 1643 Penelope and her husband took a ship from the Netherlands to New Amsterdam. With their ship foundering, she and her husband, John Kent, and several others made land at Sandy Hook. Her husband was not able to travel due to illness and she remained with him. After the couple were abandoned on shore by the other passengers looking for safety and shelter, she and her husband were attacked by natives and her husband was killed. She was gravely injured and left for dead. She took shelter in a hollow tree until she made herself known to the Navesink tribe of Leni Lenapi. They bound up her wounds, and when she was well enough to travel she was released to the Dutch at New Amsterdam (now New York City). There in 1644 at the age of 22, she married Richard Stout (1615 - 1705), son of John Stout (1584 - 1620) and Elizabeth Bee (1591 - 1685) of Nottinghamshire, England. They had a large family (7 sons and 4 daughters) mostly born at Gravesend in the current area of Coney Island, Brooklyn. They moved to Middletown Township, Monmouth County, New Jersey around 1665. This was where the Leni Lenapi who had earlier helped her were from, and they were still living there when the Stouts arrived. It is said that Penelope had 502 direct descendants when she died at the age of 110."

      The Wikipedia article presents all of this as plain fact, and of course some of it is certainly not. There is no actual evidence of Richard Stout's origins, much less that he was a son of John Stout and Elizabeth Bee. Nor is her death date known with any certainty; the claim that she died at 110 years old must be regarded with skepticism.

      But certainly the tale of her rescue by the Leni Lenapi has been told and retold by her descendants innumerable times, and it is hardly impossible that it contains elements of truth. Writing in 1916, John Stillwell (citation details below) here presents a good summary of various versions and when they first appear. (On page 298 he cites and quotes Therese (Walling) Seabrook, great-great grandmother of TK.) This web page by Jim McFarlane and its attached blog do an even more thorough job of covering the many versions.

  • Sources 
    1. [S3076] Historical and Genealogical Miscellany: Early Settlers of New Jersey and Their Descendants, Volume 4, by John E. Stillwell. New York, 1916.

    2. [S3897] Anne Borden Harding, "The John Pike Family." The New England Historical and Genealogical Register 121:161, Jul 1967.

    3. [S756] Early New England Families Study Project: Accounts of New England Families from 1641 to 1700 by Alicia Crane Williams. Online database, New England Historic Genealogical Society.

    4. [S4952] G. Andrews Moriarty, "Additions and Corrections to Austin's Genealogical Dictionary of Rhode Island." The American Genealogist 20:112, 1943.