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Common Vetch BonsallCommon Vetch
compiled and copyright by MJP Grundy, 2002
"Common Vetch", block print by Anne E. G. Nydam, copyright 1996, used by permission


         This page traces the line ending with Hannah Bonsall (1730-1802) who married Philip Price in 1752.

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         Our Bonsall line is traced back to Richard BonsallC, born in about 1538. He married Agnes SOWTE on 6 December 1563 at St. Lawrence in Heanor, Derbyshire. Richard was buried there 4.7 August 1611.[1] For an explanation of the superscriptC following his name, see the Numbering System used on this web page.

         Richard BonsallB, son of Richard and Agnes, married first on 19 November 1599 Ellenor FANNE or JANNE at St. Lawrence in Heanor. He may have been married a second time, to the widow Joanna (MILWARD) STONE. Richard died in 1631, and Joanna died eleven years later, in 1642. Richard and Elleanor had the following children listed in the St. Lawrence parish register, but only one had a date (spelling as in the register). This list may be incomplete. Richard and "Hellen" were the parents of Ellenor, John, and Richard, but without dates I do not know whether they belong to this Richard or another.

i.    Margret Bonsall
ii.   Ales Bonsall
iii.  Richard Bonsall, christened 7 June 1613.

         Joseph BonsallA, son of Richard and Joanna (?), died about 1646. I do not know the name of his wife. He had at least two sons, Richard, and Joshua. The latter married Elizabeth WOOD and died before 1686. Many secondary sources try to provide a third son, Obadiah who married Sarah BETHEL. It is remotely possible, though certainly not proved, that this Obadiah was their son. However, I strongly doubt it. See note [15] for further exploration of this branch.



First Generation in Pennsylvania

         Richard Bonsall1, son of Joseph, was baptised 17 January or March 1640/1 (See note on Old Style dating.) at St. Giles, Hartington, Derbyshire.[2] He died in 1699.

         Hartington is ten miles north, northwest from Ashborne. St. Giles was an ancient cruciform church. The town had a market and fair.[2a] However, Richard was apparently raised in Mouldridge, Derbyshire, which is such an insignificant place that it is not included in the nineteenth century Topographical Dictionary of England.

detail of Darby Township from Thomas Holmes's 1687 map of Pennsylvania

         At some point Richard became a Friend. He married about 1676 in Derbyshire Mary WOOD, daughter of George and Hannah.[3] The Bonsalls and Woods both emigrated to Pennsylvania in 1683 and settled next to each other in Darby, just over the line from Philadelphia County, in what was then Chester County (now it is Delaware County). Richard took up 200 acres on the east side of Darby Creek near the later village of Kellyville.[4] Holmes marked the tract for Richard Bonsall and George Wood together. Richard's name appears on a 1689 list of landowners in Chester County, holding 300 acres.[5] On the 1693 list of taxables he was entered as living in Darby Township, and owing 8sh 4d.[6] On 2 July 1696 Richard purchased 100 acres of land in Kingsessing, just across the border in Philadelphia County, from Enock ENOCKSON, who had inherited it from his father, Garr't Enockson, who had purchased it from Hans MOUNSON, a Swede who emigrated long before the area had become an English colony.[7]

         As one of the first English settlers Richard Bonsall helped start the Friends meeting for worship in Darby. He and his family brought a certificate of removal from Ashford Monthly Meeting dated 22 February 1682/3.[8] It asserted that Richard "Is and hath Been since he Came amongst ffriends, of Honest Life and Conversation and In unity with friends and doth now Remove Himselfe Into America with his whole family with ye Consent of friends, Being Clear from Debts and other things in Relation to his Testimony in the world."[9] Disregarding the ideosyncratic capitalization, the language of the certificate gives us a glimpse of the kind of upright life style expected by Friends of each other as witnesses to the world of how Christ was teaching them to live as his people.

         Darby was established as a monthly meeting in 1684, and a meeting house was soon built. Some of the first settlers who belonged to the meeting and who had all come from Derbyshire, were John and Michael BLUNSTON, Adam RHODES, Henry GIBBONS, Samuel SELLERS, Richard BONSALL, and John BARTRAM, and their families. Other Friends came from Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire.[10]

         Richard would not give permission for his daughter Ann to marry Joshua HIBBERD. They married anyway on 9 November 1698, out of unity with their meeting.[11] I have been unable to discover what were his objections, or if they were well founded. It was relatively uncommon for Quaker parents to oppose the marriages of their children provided the intended spouse was also a Friend.

         Mary died 24 Sixth Month [August] 1698.[12] [See a Note on Friends' Dates.] Richard died 13 September 1699. He made a nuncupative (oral) will on his death bed 13 September 1698 in the presence of his brother-in-law John WOOD, Sr., his nephew John Wood, Michael BLUNSTON, and Thomas SMITH. It was proved 15 September 1699. His children chose the men who witnessed the will as its executors. Richard bequeathed £40 to each of his daughters, and his land to his sons.[13] Mary's brother, John WOOD, Sr., worked to clear up the inheritance of his nephews, the orphans of Richard and Mary Bonsall. The deed for the land purchased by Richard Bonsall in 1696 had been mislaid, but fortunately the surveyor had given in the bounds, and a resurvey was done and the land found to be actually 104 acres. John went before the Commissioners in Philadelphia 9/6m/1703 with a return of Survey in Pursuance of the Propriatary's Warrant of Resurvey, dated 8/12m/1700. The Commissioners felt the claim was valid. They granted a patent to Jacob, Benjamin, and Enoch Bonsal. Rent due from the first survey was a bushel of wheat.[14]

         Richard and Mary Bonsall had seven children. Some like to suggest there was also a son named Obadiah, born about 1669 in Mouldridge, who later married Sarah BETHELL. Other sources suggest Obadiah was Richard's half-brother whose mother was Elizabeth Wood, the sister of Richard's wife.[15] Elizabeth (Wood) Bonsall married secondly James HUNT on 10 November 1686.[16] Obadiah's birth date is hypothetical, suggested by authors who are trying to fit him into the family somewhere. I have been unable to determine conclusively who he was, but feel relatively certain that he was not born to Richard and Mary.

         Children of Richard and Mary (Wood) Bonsall:[17]

i. Rachel Bonsall2, b. 1677 in England, m. 6/8m (Oct.) 1697 Daniel HIBBERD; d. ca. 1739 in Chester Co., with 5 children:
a) Hannah Hibberd,
b) Mary Hibberd (b. 22 May 1698 in Radnor Twp.)
c) Aaron Hibberd (b. 1 Feb. 1700)
d) Moses Hibberd (b. 14 Feb. 1702)
e) Phebe Hibberd (b. 28 Dec. 1703).[17a]
ii. [Mary] Ann Bonsall, b. in England; d.[June 1744] 1749; m. 9/9m (Nov.) 1698 to Josiah HIBBARD before John BLUNSTON, Esq., out of unity with Friends. Her father objected to the marriage, as mentioned above. It is not clear whether Josiah and Daniel (who married Rachel) were brothers. They settled in Darby. In addition Josiah purchased 500 acres in Willistown. They had 11 children:
a) John Hibbard (b. 18/11m/1699, d. 25/9m/1766, m. Deborah LEWIS);
b) Joseph Hibbard (b. 20/11m/1700, d/ 11/6m/1737, m. Elizabeth FEARNE);
c) Josiah Hibbard (b. 28/7m/1701, d. 13/11m/1727/8, unmar.);
d) Abraham Hibbard (b. 28/9m/1703, d. y. or unmar.);
e) Mary Hibbard (b. 29/6m/1705, d. 12/12m/1782, m. Benjamin LOBB);
f) Benjamin Hibbard (b. 27/2m/1707, d. ca. 1785, m. Phebe SHARPLESS);
g) Elizabeth Hibbard (b. 11/12m/1708/9, d.19/3m/1738, unmar.);
h) Sarah Hibbard (b. 19/3m/1711, d. 24/2m/1795, m. SamuelGARRETT);
i) Isaac Hibbard (b. 16/1m/1712/3, d. ca. 1797, m. Mary LOWNES);
j) Ann Hibbard (b. 12/3m/1715, m. John ASH);
k) Jacob Hibbard (b. 21/2m/1718, d. ca. 1750, m. Jane GARRETT).[18]
iii. Abigail Bonsall, b. 5 Apr. 1680 in Derbyshire; d. 9/11m/1750 in Pennsylvania; m. 8m (Oct.) 1701 or 2/7m/1702 Joseph RHOADS, son of John and Elizabeth of Marple. Joseph was b. in Derbyshire 5/2m/1680; d. 1732. They owned 400 acres in Marple.[19] They had 9 children:
a) John Rhoads,
b) Mary Rhoads (m. Robert POWELL),
c) Elizabeth Rhoads,
d) Abigail Rhoads,
e) Rebecca Rhoads (m. Mordecai MASSEY),
f) Joseph Rhoads,
g) Jane Rhoads,
h) Benjamin Rhoads (m. Katharine PUGH),
i) James Rhoads (m. Elizabeth OWEN).
iv. Jacob Bonsall, b. 9/10m OS (Dec.) 1684 in Radnor Twp.[19a] Pennsylvania; d. 10/5m/1739; m. 16/3m/1716 Martha HOOD; resided on 245 acres in Darby; 8 children.

v. Benjamin Bonsall, b. 3/11m OS (Jan.) 1686/7 in Pennsylvania; d. 6 Mar. 1752; m(1) 27 Nov. 1712 Martha FISHER, 7 children; m(2) Elizabeth SERASE, 1 child.

vi. Enoch Bonsall, b. 2/11m OS (Jan.) 1691/2 in Pennsylvania; d. 6/5m/1769; m. Ann HOOD at Darby MM; he had a "new settlement" in Lower Darby in 1744; 11 children.[20]

vii. Eleanor Bonsall, b. 8/9m OS (Nov.) 1694 in Pennsylvania; m. 23/6m 1718 Isaac JAMES.



Second Generation in Pennsylvania

         Benjamin Bonsall2, born 3 Eleventh Month (January) 1686/7, was the second son of Richard and Mary (Wood) Bonsall. He was eleven when his mother died, and not quite twelve when his father's death left him orphaned.

         When he came of age Benjamin Bonsell was given the 104 acres in Kingsessing that he inherited from his father. It was about two miles from Gray's ferry, and in the nineteenth century was bisected by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad tracks.[21] There, on 27 Ninth Month (November) 1712 Benjamin married Martha FISHER. She was the daughter of  John Fisher, a blacksmith. The wedding took place at Benjamin's house in Kingsessing. It was a Quaker style ceremony but in the presence of William CARTER, Esq., a justice of the peace, and not under the care of the meeting. The couple acknowledged this breach in Friends' principles, expressed their regret, and were retained in membership.[22]

         Benjamin witnessed the will of his uncle, John Wood, 27 April 1728. [23]

         In 1731 he moved to Darby.[24]

         Martha died and Benjamin married secondly on 8 Fourth Month (June) 1737 at Darby Meeting, the widow Elizabeth (SERASE) HORNE of Darby. She was originally from Horsham in Sussex, England and had emigrated in 1724. Her first husband, Edward Horne, was a merchant in Philadelphia. Her daughter Sarah Horne married Elizabeth's step-son Richard Bonsall.[25] Elizabeth and Benjamin had one child.

         Benjamin was a well-to-do farmer with ample estates in houses, land, horses and cattle, and money put out at interest. He hired Philip PRICE, perhaps to run his farm in Kingsessing. Philip later married Benjamin's daughter, Hannah.

         Benjamin died 6 March 1752.

         Children of Benjamin and his first wife, Martha (Fisher) Bonsall:[26]

i. Richard Bonsall3 , b. 13/5m (July) 1714 in Kingsessing; m. 14/7m/1737 Sarah HORNE; d. Jan. 1754.[27]

ii. John Bonsall, b. 28/8m (Oct.) 1716 in Kingsessing; m. 23/10m/1753 Phœbe WILCOX;

iii. Sarah Bonsall, b. 9/5m (July) or 1m1720 in Kingsessing; m. 16/5m/2753 Peter ELLIOT;

iv. James Bonsall, b. 18/6m (Aug.) 1725 in Kingsessing; d. 3m/1765;

v. Benjamin Bonsall, b. 4/2m (Apr.) 1728 in Kingsessing; m. 17/12m/1755 Mary BARTRAM; settled in Lower Darby in 1736.[28] On 20 Sept. 1759 he provided a wagon for the French and Indian War. He was credited for 11 bags of oats and mileage of 232 miles, for £21.10.3d.[29] The 1769 Kingsessing tax list shows Benjamin with 60 acres, 4 horses, 20 cattle, and one servant, liable for a tax on the total value of £94.18.8.[30]In 1774 Benjamin's estate, having disposed of real property and animals, was liable for a tax on £102.[31]

vi. Hannah Bonsall, 18/11m/1730; d. 5m/1802; bur. 10/5m/1802; m. at Darby MM 13/5m/1752 Philip PRICE; inherited her father's farm in Kingsessing.

vii. Martha Bonsall, b. 2/6m (Aug.) 1733 in Darby;

         Child of Benjamin and his second wife, Elizabeth (Serase):

viii. Nathan Bonsall3, b. 12/1m (Mar.) 1739; d. 1807; unmarried.

Third Generation in Pennsylvania


         Hannah Bonsall3, daughter of Benjamin and Martha, was born 18 January 1730 in Kingsessing. She was quite young when her mother died, and seven when her father remarried. Hannah married at Darby Monthly Meeting 13 Fifth Month [May] 1752 Philip PRICE, son of Isaac and Margaret (LEWIS) Price.[32]

         Hannah was an elder in Darby Meeting. She died in 1802 and was buried 1 Fifth Month at the burying ground of the Old Hill Meeting House in Darby. Her husband died 17 Ninth Month 1811, and was buried beside her.[33]

         Children of Hannah and her husband Philip Price:

i. Martha Price4, b. 17/8m/1753; d. 25 7m/1775; unmar.

ii. Margaret Price, b. 14/5m/1756; d. 28/11m/1812; m. ca. 1779 Edward GARRIGUES; had 6 children. Edward m. (2) ca. 1814 Susanna LIGHTFOOT, and had 2 more children.

iii. Sarah Price, b. 30/4m/1759; d. 30/5m/1839; m. 15/4m/1779 in Darby Mtg Thomas GARRETT; had 10 children. He had been m. (1) 18/11m/1773 to Margaret LEVIS, and had 2 children.[34]

iv. Isaac Price, b. 1/6m/1761; d. 26/8m/1766.

v. Philip Price, b. 8/1m/1764 in Kingsessing Twp., Phila.; d. 26/2m/1837 in West Chester, Pa.; m. 20/10m/1784 Rachel KIRK; they were heads of Westtown Friends School 1818-1830; had 11 children.[35]

vi. Benjamin Price, b. 16/4m/1766 in Kingsessing Twp., Phila.; d. 31/1m/1839; m. 20/5m/1789 Ruth KIRK, sister of Rachel who m. Benjamin's brother Philip; Benjamin was a farmer; had 6 children.

vi. Isaac Price, b. 13/10m/1768; d. 15/9m/1798; m. 9m/1791 Mary FENTHAN; Isaac was a watchmaker in Philadelphia; had 3 children.

vii. Hannah Price, b. 4/3m/1771; d. 1/8m/1775.



Common Vetch




         To continue the story of this family, go to Price. The larger Price line, with more than two dozen of its collateral lines, including this Bonsall branch, has been expanded as a hard copy book with considerable historical context. To learn more about the times in which these family members lived, you might want to read The Price Family in History. It gives a lot of social, religious, economic, and political context for the lives of these ancestors. The book is available on lulu.com. The price is the cost of printing and binding, plus shipping.

         This Bonsall line connects (directly or indirectly) with Ashbridge, Borton,   Cox, one David/Davies, the other (Ellis) Davies, England, Fisher, Haines,   Harry, John, Jones, Holliday,   John, Jones, Kirk,   one Lewis (Henry), the other Lewis (Thomas), Malin, Morgan, Orbell, Paxton,   the main Price, another Price (Richard), a third Price (David), Sharpley, Schumacher/Shoemaker, Taylor, Thomas, Townsend, Warner, White, Williams, Wood, and Wooderson families. In time more of them may be posted. Some of them are very short, as I do not follow them after "my" ancestor married into another surname family.


         See all the Bonsall citations.


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Common Vetch



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This page was last updated on 1m/23/2014.