Gene Surfing

Adventures in Family History


Farmer BullshotHenningham Codrington was born March 1674 in St Philips, Barbados, according to some sources, but there does not seem to be any evidence of exactly when or where.

She became the second wife of Dr Paul Carrington in 1706, although some of their children were born before this date, and she died on Barbados 28 Jan 1744 at the age of 69 so she was probably born about 1674.

Some transcriptions of her memorial say she died 1741 but her will is dated Feb 1744/5 and the later date is more likely.

Here lyeth
the body of
of PAUL CARRIN(sic)TON who died
January the 28th day 1744
aged 69 years

Her father has been suggested as  both Christopher and John Codrington of Barbados, but it seems much more likely that she was the grand-daughter of Henningham Drury who married Robert Codrington of London in about 1628.

The name Henningham (or Heveningham, after the village in Suffolk) also spelled Heuenyngham, is a family name so you would expect that either her mother or grand-mother was a member of this family and she was named after them.

But this does not seem to be the case.

Her parents are commonly identified as Robert Drury and Mary Radcliffe and the Heveningham name does not appear in their pedigree, although the families did live in the same part of the country and must have been known to each other.

The name Barbara is not found in the Codrington family and this was the name of the first child of Robert and Henningham in 1628, so may have come from Henningham’s family.

barbara codrington

So, in theory either her mother or grand-mother should be Barbara Heveningham.

And she does exist – although some time later than fits with our theory.

… in consideration of marriage between Sir Wm. Heveningham and Barbara Villiers … Dame Barbara survived William Heveningham and Sir William Heveningham and died May 1681 leaving one daughter, Abigail

But this doesn’t help to understand where the name came from.

Robert Codrington was a writer, poet and translator, the son of Richard and Joyce Codrington of Dodington, Gloucestershire, born in about 1602.

See also I, Robert for more discussion on this subject.

His son, also Robert, was born in London, 1635 and it is assumed that he is the father of Henningham Codrington, naming his daughter after his mother.

robert codringtom 1635

In this entry the name is actually spelled as Haveningam.

The mother of Henningham Codrington II was Elizabeth but her pedigree is not known and Robert also had another wife named Mary who died in Barbados 1667.

Elizabeth may have been born in London or Barbados – I would guess at Barbados with Robert’s first wife, Mary probably born in London.

It is not known when the family left England – possibly after the death of Robert’s father in 1665, which is the same year that his older sister, Barbara, married Thomas Prewet.

There is a record of Robert with his wife Elizabeth and daughter Frances in 1678 travelling to Barbados [see notes], however this record may actually be a transcription of a baptism and not a travel record at all.

There is another separate record, from the same source, for Robert and Elizabeth and daughter Alice in the same year.

In some pedigrees Henningham Drury as shown as the youngest daughter (of Robert Drury and Mary Radcliffe) born about 1622, but this is far too late for her to be the mother of Barbara in 1628.

If she was 18 when she married then she must have been born before 1610, so perhaps she did not belong to the family of Robert and Mary and was the daughter of a less well documented branch of the family that did include a Heveningham.

But she could also have been named after a family friend or god-parent, or perhaps she was born in Heveningham – or conceived there?

As for the spelling, it appears that the name has been written down as it was pronounced which has changed the spelling of the family name over time, although the village name remains the same.

Heveningham, pronounced Henningum, is, of course, most famous for Heveningham Hall, the biggest, grandest, stately home in Suffolk.

The elder Robert died in London 1665 of the plague, and it is possible that his wife, Henningham died at the same time – but there are no records of either death, which is hardly unexpected during, what was probably, the worst outbreak of the plague in London, promptly followed by the Great Fire.

This may have prompted Robert and his wife Mary to leave London – the West Indies was a dangerous place to go but it was, as recent events had shown, quite dangerous in London as well.

But we still don’t know for sure where or when Henningham was born, or who her parents were.


HOTTEN, JOHN CAMDEN, editor. The Original Lists of Persons of Quality; Emigrants; Religious Exiles; Political Rebels; Serving Men Sold for a Term of Years; Apprentices; Children Stolen; Maidens Pressed; and Others Who Went from Great Britain to the American Plantations, 1600-1700. With Their Ages, the Localities Where They Formerly Lived in the Mother Country, the Names of the Ships in Which They Embarked, and Other Interesting Particulars.

Ancestry note: Care should be taken when using Hotten

Chris Sidney 2015


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