Richard Cocke (1597-1665) was born at Pickthorn, Stottesdon, Shropshire, England and was in Virginia by 24 Dec 1627. On this date, Cocke appeared in court in Jamestown where he testified as the purser of the Thomas and John that four of Mr. Sharples’s men had run away while being transported to Virginia. He appeared in court again on 10 Feb 1629 as the attorney for Patrick Canada, who was seeking ownership of Thomas Hunter’s estate.
Although by 1632 Cocke had married the widow (1) Temperance Bailey Browne, Cocke had to pay a fee of 6,397 pounds of tobacco to settle Browne’s estate. Temperance Baley [Bailey], the mother of Browne’s two daughters Mary and Margaret, was born in VA in 1617 and is listed on the Muster of 1624/25 as a member of Cecily Jordan’s household in Jordan’s Jordan. Cecily Jordan, identified as an ancient planter in a 1620 patent, is thought to be Temperance’s mother by an early marriage to a man named Bailey. The two sons of Temperance and Richard Cocke were Thomas and Richard, who later became known as Richard the Elder.
After Temperance’s death, Richard Cocke married (2) Mary Aston, daughter of Walter Aston; the couple had another son named Richard (known as Richard the Younger), Elizabeth, John, William, and Edward.
Richard Cocke became an important figure in VA, acquiring 10,916 acres of land, principally in Henrico County but also in Surry County where he first lived in the 1630s. He named his three homes Bremo, Curles, and Malvern Hill. He also served as a Burgess, first in 1632 representing Weyanoke and then Henrico from 1644 to 1654. He was a Colonel of the local militia and a court justice.
Among Cocke’s prominent descendants are Robert E. Lee, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush.
First Mississippi Company Descendant of Richard Cocke: Charles David Hill
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