William Crispin

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Captain William Crispin (October 3, 1627 – 1681) was one of five Commissioners appointed by William Penn for settling his colony of Pennsylvania, September 30, 1681. He had served in the army under Cromwell. Crispin was also appointed Surveyor General. William Penn appointed Crispin as the first Chief Justice in a letter dated August 18, 1681.

Crispin died at sea near Barbados on his way to Pennsylvania. He was replaced by Thomas Holme as Surveyor General.


Capt. William Crispin married twice. First to Ann Jasper, daughter of John Jasper, and sister of Margaret Jasper, wife of Admiral Penn. From this union, there were 4 children.

  1. Silas Crispin (1655 – May 31, 1711) born c. 1655 in London, England; died May 31, 1711 in Dublin, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania; married (1)Esther Holme (daughter of Thomas Holme) in 1683 and married (2)Mary Shinn Stockton, widow of Thomas Shinn .
  2. Rebecca Crispin, born c. 1656; married (1) Edward Blackfan August 24, 1688 in Sussex, England; married (2) Neheniah Allen 1725.
  3. Ralph Crispin, c. 1657 – June 21, 1730; married (1) Anne Millner in Kinsale, County Cork, Ireland; married (2) Anna Busted 1682 in Kinsale, County Cork, Ireland. William Penn granted Ralph Crispin 500 acres of land in Pennsylvania, his portion of "his free gift" Ralph never left Ireland.
  4. Rachel Crispin, born c. 1658; married Thomas Armstrong

Following the death of Ann Jasper, Capt. William Crispin married (2) Jane Chudleigh (Chidley)and they had 7 children:

  1. James, married between 1687 and 1698
  2. Joseph died as youth
  3. Benjamin married between 1698 and 1702 to Alice ____
  4. Jane married to Greenland Lucomb
  5. Eleanor. never married
  6. Elizabeth died prior to 1702 married between 1698 and 1698 to Hilliard.
  7. Amy married Daniel Johnson.

William Penn granted James, Benjamin, Jane, Eleanor, Elizabeth and Amy, "his free gift" of 3000 acres of land in Pennsylvania by deed on November 22, 1698. The same deed includes to "Jane Crispin, of Kinsale,, widow of William Crispin." he gave " one half of 3000 acres. This deed is among the papers of the late Daniel Sutter of Mt.Holly, NJ

There is another faction noting the marriage of Capt. Crispin to Rebecca Bradshaw (1631–1660) on September 28, 1652 in St. Dunstan's, Stepney, Middlesex, England. Stating: Captain William Crispin married first, Sept. 22, 1652, Rebecca Bradshaw, the daughter of Ralph Bradshaw and Rachel Penn, who was the sister of Admiral Sir Wm. Penn, and the daughter of Captain Giles Penn, the grandfather of Wm. Penn the founder of Pennsylvania. His son Silas was born of this marriage, and from him are descended the Crispin families of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. He married second in 1655 Jane Chudeleigh of Kinsdale, Ireland. From both of these marriages he had numerous children."

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