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Kempe family information.
This page last updated: 1/4/2001
The information contained on this page may NOT be used for profit or gain!

Message From:
Carole Colvine, submitter.
Date: Mon, May 3, 1999
I will be more than happy to share any info I have on any of these people. Most of it came from Family Tree during the "grace" period.
Abstracts from Despositions in Lower Norfolk Co., Virginia
In 1640, George Kempe is 28 years of age.
Ann Kempe was the wife of Sir Thomas Sherley, the elder. Her brother, Sir Thomas Kempe was the father of Mary Kempe who married Edward Digges, son of Sir Dudley Digges. Edward and Mary went to VA. Another daughter, Dorothy Kempe married Sir Thomas Chickley. Their son, Sir Henry Chickley, married Agatha Eltonhead (widow of Ralph Wormely of Middlesex Co., VA) Another daughter, Ann Kempe married Sir Henry Skipwith. Their son was Sir Grey Skipwith sho also went to Virginia. He was living next to William Shirley in New Kent Co., VA in 1676.
From Cavaliers and Pioneers by Nugent Vol II page 229..."Mr Richards, 1676 acres, New Kent Co., St. Stephens Parish, April 20, 1682. Beginning at Bestland, nigh head of Robin's branch along Edmond Binns; Mr. William Shirley, and Sir Grey Skipwith; up the Draggon, Sev., to Col. Claibourne 900 acres granted to Greg Morris...etc. (Sir Grey Skipwith's sister, Diana Skipwith, married Major Edward Dale and lived Lancaster Co., VA.
(Note: a William Shirley is overseerer for a Mrs. Claiborne in King William Co., VA in the 1820 census)
The father of Ann Kempe, wife of Sir Thomas Sherley, the elder, had a sister Emmaline Kempe who married a Mr. Scott. Their daughter Eliz. Scott married Sir Richard Smith, brother of Sir Thomas Smith, the first treasurer of the Virginia Company. Richard and Thomas Smith had a sister, Alice, who married Wm. Harris. Their granddaughter, Dorothy Harris married Robert Kempe and their son, Richard Kempe, was Governor of Virginia and Secretary of State. Thomas, Richard and Alice Smith were first cousins with Mary Golding who married Bartholomew Gosnold, founder of Jamestown Virginia in 1606.
A John and George Kempe appraised Rev. Josias Mackis estate in 1718 in Princess Anne Co., John Shirley, Sr. is mentioned.
In the Parish records of Christ Church, Middlesex Co., VA, Mr. Richard Kempe and wife Ellianor were having children in 1694-98. At the same time Richard Shirley and his wife, Ann, widow of George Duff, are having children in the same Parish.
1742 Thomas Price, consent of Mary Kempe to her daughters marriage 1758 Thomas Kempe and Mary Smith 1784 Peter Kempe and Hannah Kempe, consent of her mother, Mary Kempe
Richard Kempe was the 3rd son of Robert Kempe of Gissing and Flordon in Norfolk. Robert Kempe was baptised at Hampstead, Middlesex, on 28 December 1567; and was buried at Gissing in 1612. His father, Richard Kempe, the elder, had married Alice Cockeram of Hampstead at that parish church on 22 January 1566/7. Richard Kempe moved to Ipswich, where he was appointed Councillor of the Law. He lived at Washbrook, some three miles south-west of the town. He probably lived there until his own father, Robert Kempe of Gissing and Flordon, died in 1594, aged 80, and he succeded to his estates.
Thus the baptism of the younger children of Richard and Alice Kempe are probably to be found in the Parish Registers of Ipswich sometime around 1570 onwards. Richard Kempe, the elder , died not long after his father, and was buried at Gissing on 5 April, 1600 (Will 44 Force and Old Wills, 26; proved at Norwich Cosistory Court by his son and his wife on 7 May 1600.) His family included: Margaret Kempe, wife of Daniel Cotton; Anne Kempe, the wife of Anthony Drury of Besthope, Norfolk (marriage recorded on 26 May 1567 at Gissing); John Kempe, his brother at Antingam who died in 1610 (Will dated 30 Sept 1610 and proved 5 Dec 1610). He married Anne Calthorpe, widow of Robert Jermy of Antingham, and left a son and heir, Robert Kempe ; who gave his estates in 1626 to his cousin, Sir Robert Kempe of Gissing. Also meantioned were his nephew and niece Harborne; Thomas Kempe of Beccles; his niece, Dorothy Norton, his cousin, Robert Kempe of Bury St. Edmunds; his nephews Thomas Kempe, then a scholar at Cambridge, and edward Rowse (Rous). Robert and John Kempe, sons of his eldest son, Robert Kempe, were to have a sum of money when they went to Grays Inn to study the Law.
Richard Kempe owned the Manors of Hasting in Gissing and Flordon in Norfolk, and Burnells, Dallings and Redisham in Suffolk. He added to the family estate by purchasing the Manor, afterwards known as Gissing Hall in Roydon. The Manor of Redisham is mentioned in a deed of 1311 as belonging to the Kempe family of Weston (BM Stowe Mss, 250). This is some evidence to surrport the descent of the Norfolk family from this Suffolk root. His widow, Alice Kempe, remarried, her second husband being Edmund Poley, Gent., of Badley near stowmarket, Suffolk, on 17 Sept 1601 at Gissing church. Edmund Poley died on 31 Oct 1613, aged 69, and there is an inscription to him and other Poley family members in the church in Badley. The eldest son, Richard Kempe, the elder, was also called Robert Kempe; and was described as of Gissing, Flordon and Antingham in Norfolk. He was entered as a student at Grays Inn, London, on 9 May, 1682. He married, around 1596, to Dorothy, daughter of Arthur Harris of Cricksea and Woodham Mortimer, Essex by Dorothy, daughter of Sir William Waldegrave of Smallbridge, Suffolk and sister of Sir William Harris of Cricksea. Arthur Harris was the son of William Harris of Woodham Ferrers and Alice Smythe. Alice Smythe was the daugher of Sir John Smythe of Ostenhanger, Kent; whose brother, Sir Thomas Smythe (1558-1626) helped found the Virginia Company.
As the first two children of Robert Kempe are not baptised at Gissing, he probably lived elsewhere until he succeeded to the Manor. Richard Kempe, the third son and future Secretary of Virginia, was baptised at Gissing in 1600; and the fourth son, Arthur Kempe, was also baptised there in 1601. Robert Kempe died on 23 Oct 1612, aged 47, and was buried at Gissing,   At the time of his death none of his children had reached manhood, although he had eight sone and three daughters, of whom seven sons and two daughters survived him; as well as his wife. His will was dated 30 Nov 1612 and proved on 5 May 1613 by his widow, Dorothy Kempe. Dorothy Kempe lived on at the Manor House at Florodn, until she died at Flordon in 1626 and was buried alonside her husband at Gissing. She left a will proved in the same year.(dated 30 March 1626 and proved 29 Nov 1626). She memtions she hold a lease of a house in finsbury, Middlesex, from Sir William Parkhurst, Knight. This might represent a London residence, perhaps the same as mentioned in the will of her son, Arthur Kempe, as his Chamber in London.
Arthur Kempe was at Pembroke College, Cambridge, from 1620-1623. From 1631-1635 he was Rector of Mapiscombe in Kent. He was destined to become Rector of Cricksea, and later of St. Michael-at-Thorn, Norwich, where he died in 1645, leaving a will but no issue. He left bequests to the poor of Antingham, Flordon, St. Michael-at-Thorn and the City of Norwich.

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