Jane Rolfe

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Jane Rolfe
Born10 October 1650
Varina, Colony of Virginia (present-day Varina, Virginia, United States)
Died27 January 1676(1676-01-27) (aged 25)
Resting placeKippax Plantation
Spouse(s)Robert Bolling
ChildrenJohn Bolling
Parent(s)Thomas Rolfe
Jane Poythress
RelativesJohn Rolfe (paternal grandfather)
Pocahontas (paternal grandmother)

Jane Rolfe (October 10, 1650 – January 27, 1676) was the granddaughter of Pocahontas and English colonist John Rolfe, (credited with introducing a strain of tobacco for export by the struggling Virginia Colony). Her husband was Colonel Robert Bolling, who lived from 1646 to 1709. Robert and Jane had one son, John Bolling (1676–1729).

Pocahontas, who adopted the Christian name of Rebecca,[1][2] married John Rolfe on April 5, 1614 in Jamestown. Rolfe's longtime friend, Reverend Richard Buck presided the wedding.[3] They had one child, Thomas Rolfe, who was born in Virginia on January 30, 1615.

Jane Rolfe was born in Varina, Henrico County, Virginia on October 10, 1650 [4] to Thomas Rolfe and his wife, Jane Poythress, whose parents were Francis Poythress and Alice Payton of England.[5][6][7]

In about 1675, Jane married Robert Bolling of Prince George County, Virginia. Their son John was born on January 27, 1676. Jane is said to have died shortly afterward.[4]

John Bolling married Mary Kennon, daughter of Richard Kennon and Elizabeth Worsham of Conjurer's Neck.[4] The couple had six surviving children, each of whom married and had surviving children.[8] As a result, many Americans are today able to claim descent from Pocahontas through her great-grandson, John Bolling.

Rolfe's interment was near her father in the Kippax Plantation, but her birth year was never engraved on her headstone.


  1. ^ The conversion of Pocahontas to Christianity was undertaken by Alexander Whitaker.
  2. ^ "Pocahontas Biography: also called Matoaka and Amonute, Christian name Rebecca (1595–1617)". The Biography Channel. 2011. Archived from the original on August 26, 2011. Retrieved August 25, 2011.
  3. ^ Travels and Works of Captain John Smith (Edinburgh 1910), p. 514
  4. ^ a b c John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, 4th ed., Vol. 3, pp. 23–36.
  5. ^ Snow, Megan (May 2003). "Thomas Rolfe". Historic Jamestowne. National Park Service. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
  6. ^ Pecquet du Bellet, Louise (1907). "Bolling Family". Some prominent Virginia families. Lynchburg, VA: J.P. Bell Co. p. 304. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
  7. ^ "The Descendants of Pocahontas: An Unclosed Case", by Elizabeth Vann Moore and Richard Slatten, Magazine of Virginia Genealogy, XXIII, no.3, pp. 3–16, cited by John Frederick Dorman, Adventurers of Purse and Person, 4th ed., Vol. 3, p. 26, fn23–24. Moore and Slatten traced the suggestion that his wife was a Poythress back to a comment by W. G. Stanard in "Abstracts of Virginia Land Patents", Virginia Historical Magazine(I, 1894, 446–447): "His wife is said to have been a Miss Poythress (if so, doubtless a daughter of Francis Poythress." According to Moore and Slatten, Stanard cited as evidence handwritten notes on the flyleaf of a copy of A Complete Collection of All the Laws of Virginia Now in Force Carefully Copied from the Assembled Records (London, 168[?], now in the Library of Virginia. Moore and Slatten state: "Interestingly, Thomas Rolfe here is recorded as married to a 'Miss Payers'. We recall that in John Rolfe's will the name of his third wife is spelt Pyers (Peirce) and that it was John who married a "Jane". Here again a Bolling descendant confused the son with his father. Not recognizing the name 'Payers' as another variant of Peirce, someone searched the records for a name beginning with 'P' and having a 'y' in the first syllable. Francis Poythress lived in adjacent Charles City County and his name ended in s! Stanard wrote, 'His wife is said to have been a Miss Poythress (if so, doubtless a daughter of Francis Poythress).' (VMHB I, 446) Wyndham Robertson, a Bolling descendant, wrote in Pocahontas Alias Mataoke and Her Descendants (Richmond, 1887), 'I adopt "Jane Poythress" (not "Poyers") whom he is stated in the Bolling Memoirs to have married in England.' He added in justification of his charming adoption of an ancestress, '...no such name as "Poyers" is anywhere known ... the family of Poythress was already settled in Virginia.' ... The result has been the acceptance of a non-existent personage, 'Jane Poythress', in the Bibles of Virginia genealogy, as the bona fide ancestress of many illustrious Virginians. Who the wife (or wives) of Thomas Rolfe may have been remains an unanswered question."
  8. ^ Henrico County Deeds & Wills 1697–1704, p. 96

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