Thursday, May 21, 2015

Dutch vs. Welsh: Which was Christopher St. John?

Today's post compares the information I have on the Dutch Christian Santken and the Welsh Christopher St. John. The Santken lineage is only three generations deep, while St. John runs several. I am showing four generations.


(1)  Mathias Sension/St. John [bp. 9 Aug 1601 St. Olave Silver Street, London]: the immigrant.

(2)  Christian Santken [b. c1575, Antwerp – d. c19 June 1629 London], m. by 1601 Joan _______ [b. England – d. after 1652/3 London]

(3)  Mathias Santken [b. c1550, Antwerp – d. after 1582 London]


(1)  Mathias Sension/St. John [bp. 9 Aug 1601 St. Olave Silver Street, London]: the immigrant.

(2)  Christopher St. John [c1581 Highlight, Glamorgan, Wales – c18 June 1629 Silver Street Parish, London, England] m. by 1601 Joan Fleming? [b.???? – d. by Oct. 1605 London]

(3)  Thomas St. John [c1560 Wales – 25 July 1611 St. Olave, Bermondsey, Southwark, England] m. Jane Matthew [ferch Robert]

(4)  Christopher St. John, Esq. [c1526 Wales – after 22 April 1616 Highlight, Glamorgan, Wales] m. Elizabeth Bawdrip
There are a few differences in the vital statistics for the two:                     
    (1) Birth: Dutch - c1575, Welsh - c1582. That 7 year gap becomes an issue.
    (2) Spouse: While both are married to a woman named Joan, the Welsh spouse has the surname Fleming. It was noted in the Dutch Church records that Santken's wife was English.
    (3) Parentage: Dutch: father Mathias; Welsh: father Thomas & mother Jane Matthew, grandparents: Christopher & Elizabeth Bawdrip.
The issue that has concerned me the most is the age at marriage. Our Dutchman was about 25/26. Our Welshman was about 18/19. In 1600, the mid-twenties was a more common age of marriage than the late teens.
Wills also played a crucial role in the research:                                                 Christopher St. John [gf] named his son Thomas and grandson Christopher. Robert Matthew [Christopher's grandfather] mentioned Christopher St. John, son of his daughter  Jane. Of course, one vital document could not be located - the will of Thomas St. John, Christopher's father. That will, if one was made, might offer details that would answer the questions of Christopher's nativity.
The will of Christopher St. John, made in 1629, named his sons: Mathias, Samuel, Thomas and Nicholas.
There is no doubt that there was a Christopher St. John of Wales and a Dutchman of the same name. The question remains: Which one was the father of Mathias the immigrant?
Although I'm not 100% convinced, my inclination is the gentleman from Antwerp.

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