Jamestown Descendants: Who’s Who, Part 5

Introduction: In this article, Melissa Davenport Berry continues her series on descendants of the Jamestown settlers, writing more about the familial ties between George Washington and Queen Elizabeth II. Melissa is a genealogist who has a blog, AnceStory Archives, and a Facebook group, New England Family Genealogy and History.

Today I continue with my “Jamestown Descendants: Who’s Who” series, again focusing on General George Washington – whose ancestors included English noblemen and one French Huguenot who came to Jamestown, Virginia.

Illustration: George Washington. Credit: Lee Family Digital Archives, Stratford Hall, Stratford, VA https://leefamilyarchive.org/
Illustration: George Washington. Credit: Lee Family Digital Archives, Stratford Hall, Stratford, VA https://leefamilyarchive.org/

To recap: my last story covered the Royal line connections of Queen Elizabeth II and George Washington in England, as published in the San Diego Union in 1953, a month before Queen Elizabeth II was crowned. (See: Jamestown Descendants: Who’s Who, Part 4)

Here is the second part, covering the American [Jamestown, Virginia] blood line connections of the Queen and Washington:

  • Colonel Augustine Warner, an American colonist born in 1643, had two daughters: Mildred May Warner and Mary Warner.
  • Mildred May became the grandmother of George Washington (see lineage below).
  • Mary married John Smith, and their daughter Mildred Smith married Robert Porteus of Virginia.
  • In 1720 Porteus moved his family to Yorkshire, England. His granddaughter Mildred Porteus married Robert Hodgson. The Hodgson’s granddaughter Henrietta Mildred Hodgson married Oswald Smith of Blendon Hall in Kent, England.
  • Their grandson was the 14th Earl of Strathmore, the grandfather of Queen Elizabeth II.

And so, through Mildred May and Mary Warner, Queen Elizabeth II and George Washington are distant cousins.

An article about George Washington's ancestry, San Diego Union newspaper article 3 May 1953
San Diego Union (San Diego, California), 3 May 1953, page 115

Now the George Washington lineage in Virginia:

  • George Reade (Virginia, 1637) and Elizabeth Martiau, daughter of Captain Nicolas Martiau and Elizabeth Jane Page, descended from the Royal House of England starting with Henry the III thru Edward I, King of England.
  • Mildred Reade and Augustine Warner II, son of Augustine Warner I and Mary Towneley.
  • Mildred Warner and Lawrence Washington, son of John Washington and Ann Pope.
  • Augustine Washington and Mary Ball, daughter of Joseph Matthaus Ball and Mary Montague (also a Jamestown/Royal line, William Ball I and House of Burgesses)
  • George Washington married Martha Dandridge, daughter of John Dandridge Jr. and Francis Jones.
Photo: statue of George Washington, with a medallion of his ancestor Nicolas Martiau, located in the garden behind the Ernest Cognacq Museum in Saint Martin de Ré, France. The monument was inaugurated on 11 October 2007 by the ambassador of the United States to France. The filiation between the two men is described on the monument. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.
Photo: statue of George Washington, with a medallion of his ancestor Nicolas Martiau, located in the garden behind the Ernest Cognacq Museum in Saint Martin de Ré, France. The monument was inaugurated on 11 October 2007 by the ambassador of the United States to France. The filiation between the two men is described on the monument. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

I found an interesting article on George Washington’s ancestor Nicolas Marteau (note the spelling is generally accepted as Martiau), who came to Virginia in 1620 on the ship Frances Bona Venture.

Illustration: Nicholas Martiau. Courtesy of Philip Hamilton of Hamilton Historic Records
Illustration: Nicolas Martiau. Courtesy of Philip Hamilton of Hamilton Historic Records

The story, published in the Milwaukee Journal in 1929, was written by Frank and Cortelle Hutchins, noted Virginia historians whose ancestors were part of the Virginia Company.

An article about George Washington's ancestry, Milwaukee Journal newspaper article 19 May 1929
Milwaukee Journal (Milwaukee, Wisconsin), 19 May 1929, page 83

This French forefather of Washington’s line is worthy of mention, for Martiau was the leader of the first American rebellion against English rule. His colonial plantation was where General Washington was to win another English rebellion almost a century and half later.

Here is the story recap from the Hutchins:

Martiau, a French Huguenot, lived in England for years – but his allegiance was to France. In fact, it got him in some hot water.

When Martiau came to Virginia in 1620 he was a 29-year-old, dark-eyed and fiercely-mustached fellow, sporting a doublet, slashed trousers and high, shiny boots; romantic dashed added by cocked and plumed sombrero, swinging cloak and low-hung sword.

So came Nicolas Martiau, French forefather of George Washington, while yet not one of his English forefathers was in the New World. He settled in Elizabeth City, 40 miles from Jamestown.

In 1623 Martiau was chosen as one of the burgesses to the General Assembly, the colonial legislature at Jamestown.

The Assembly convened with the governor in his great velvet chair, the councilors on either side, and the burgesses facing them. Much rattle of swords and clink of spurs, and then this body proceeded to become memorable. Sitting there under a governor commissioned in England, those colonials enacted that he could not, except with their consent, lay any form of taxes in Virginia.

And the voice of George Washington’s French grandfather, Nicolas Martiau, was in that first American pronouncement that only through representation shall there be taxation.

Martiau’s next appointment by the governor was as a “commissioner,” a justice of the court – a post of distinction. He had reached the top in title and status, but he still was a singleton.

He needed a wife. In the spring of 1627 Lt. Edward Berkeley died, leaving a widow Jane, whom Martiau married.

Stay tuned for more.

Note: An online collection of newspapers, such as GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives, is not only a great way to learn about the lives of your ancestors – the old newspaper articles also help you understand American history and the times your ancestors lived in.

Note on the header image: a close-up of the medallion featuring George Washington’s ancestor Nicolas Martiau, located in the garden behind the Ernest Cognacq Museum in Saint Martin de Ré, France. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

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2 thoughts on “Jamestown Descendants: Who’s Who, Part 5

  1. Hey, I am George Washington’s 12th cousin as well as Thomas Jefferson’s 3rd cousin. I don’t know much about how to do genealogy but am interested in it.

    Did George Washington, Augustine Warner Sr., or Capt. Thomas Hoverton Warner (or any of their descendants) have relatives onboard the Mayflower?

    I’m looking to join the Mayflower Society.

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