Thomas Woodward Part 2

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(Chapter 2: Some circumstances regarding Thomas Woodward, the immigrant)
(Chapter 3: More Discussion of various Thomas Woodwards in England)
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This mystery begins to make a little sense, however, if we assume (for the sake of argument) that in fact Thomas Woodward didn’t '''''want''''' his English family to know where he was, in the 1650s and 1660s. Recall that in 1677, as Thomas Woodward lay on his deathbed, and wrote out his will (dying within only four more days), he stated publicly that he didn’t even know if he had grandchildren by his son John or not (26). I have said it before, but this fact indicates a '''''serious''''' breach in communication between Thomas and his son John in England (for what reasons we can only guess). By this time in colonial affairs, letters and persons were regularly making the transatlantic crossing again and again—occasionally returning to England for visits and sometimes even to die and be buried there.
 
This mystery begins to make a little sense, however, if we assume (for the sake of argument) that in fact Thomas Woodward didn’t '''''want''''' his English family to know where he was, in the 1650s and 1660s. Recall that in 1677, as Thomas Woodward lay on his deathbed, and wrote out his will (dying within only four more days), he stated publicly that he didn’t even know if he had grandchildren by his son John or not (26). I have said it before, but this fact indicates a '''''serious''''' breach in communication between Thomas and his son John in England (for what reasons we can only guess). By this time in colonial affairs, letters and persons were regularly making the transatlantic crossing again and again—occasionally returning to England for visits and sometimes even to die and be buried there.
  
==Chapter 3: More Discussion of various Thomas Woodwards in England==
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==Various Thomas Woodwards in England==
  
Before closing this discussion, I would like to mention a few passing items of trivia which may possibly have some bearing on this Thomas Woodward, the immigrant. They can either be seen as possibly helping to clarify the issues, or perhaps only helping to further muddy the picture:
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A “Thomas Woodward, Esq.”, had become a creditor (lender) in the amount of £1,000 to Sir Thomas Dawes, to satisfy a debt against the Crown, on 6 August, 1641. This was in company with several other gentlemen (apparently of quality), and was recorded in the ''Journal of the House of Commons'' (27).  This Thomas Woodward may or may not have been the same person as the immigrant to Virginia. We simply have insufficient proof one way or the other. We nonetheless can see, whether or not he was the same person as our immigrant, that this particular Thomas Woodward was a man of (a) considerable wealth and advantage, and (b) a man comfortable among the political elite of his day and age.
  
A “Thomas Woodward, Esq.”, had become a creditor (lender) in the amount of £1,000 to Sir Thomas Dawes, to satisfy a debt against the Crown, on 6 August, 1641. This was in company with several other gentlemen (apparently of quality), and was recorded in the ''Journal of the House of Commons'' (27).  This fact, while probably relatively meaningless in and of itself, nonetheless shows this particular Thomas Woodward (whether or not he is the same as our immigrant) to have been a man of (a) considerable wealth and advantage, and (b) a man comfortable among the political elite of his day and age.
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Another “Thomas Woodward, gent.” was apparently a law student at the Middle Temple, of the famous Inns of Court in London, and was connected with that hallowed institution from at least the year 1618 (28).  But even more than that, he was a personal friend whilst there of the English metaphysical poet John Donne:
 
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A “Thomas Woodward, gent.” was apparently a law student at the Middle Temple, of the famous Inns of Court in London, from at least the year 1618 (28).  But even more than that, he was a personal friend whilst there of the English metaphysical poet John Donne (see below).
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==Chapter 4: Thomas Woodward and his brother Rowland, friends of the poet Donne==
 
==Chapter 4: Thomas Woodward and his brother Rowland, friends of the poet Donne==

Revision as of 17:45, 29 May 2008

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