One of the most interesting discoveries found whilst my sister “C” was researching material for her booklet, “Sinnott Scions, Snippets and Stories” is that of the connection to the story of King Charles II hiding in the “Royal Oak” and the Penderel brothers.
Our mother’s second cousin, Edna Sinnott Moss (1908-1986), was the daughter and only child of Bridget Sinnott and Henry Robinson Moss. Edna married Albert de Broughe and their eldest son was Henry Pendrell de Broughe “Harry”. During a telephone conversation with Harry, he told “C” that his middle name was “Pendrell”; as “C” said to me after the phone call, as if she would know the significance of the name.
So I said to her; well look it up on the internet. So we did, and hence discovered from Wikipedia that “after the defeat of Charles’s Royalist army at the hands of Cromwell’s New Model Army, the King fled with other royalists, seeking shelter at the safe houses of White Ladies Priory and Boscobel House.
Initially, Charles was led to White Ladies Priory. There, the Penderel (Pendrell or Pendrill) family, tenants and servants of the Giffard family began to be important in guiding and caring for him. The King was disguised as a woodman by Charles Giffard and the Penderel family. From White Ladies, Richard Penderel led Charles in an unsuccessful attempt to cross the Severn near Madeley, Shropshire. They were forced to retrace their steps and Charles took refuge at Boscobel. On the 6th September 1651, he there met with William Careless (or Carlis), a native of nearby Brewood.
Careless suggested that the house was unsafe and recommended that the king hide in an oak tree in the woodlands surrounding Boscobel House. The king and Careless took some food and drink and they spent all day hiding in an oak tree which became known as the Royal Oak. From the oak they could see patrols of Parliamentary soldiers searching for the king. Later Charles spent the night hiding in one of Boscobel’s Priest holes.
After the Restoration in 1660 Charles granted annuities to the Penderels for their services (still paid to their descendants to this day) and for Careless’s help during the escape from Worcester.
The five Penderel brothers involved with assisting King Charles II’s escape from England consisted of Richard Penderel, who was a tenant farmer of the farm of Hobbal Grange in Tong, Shropshire. His landlord was Basil Fitzherbert of nearby Boscobel House, where, the eldest brother, William Penderel was the caretaker. (William Penderel provided Charles with a ladder to hide in the Royal Oak (sometimes known as “Penderel’s Oak”) and distracted the soldiers who were searching for him). The other brothers were John and George who were servants at White Ladies Priory and Humphrey, who ran a nearby Mill.
Once we had found out the significance of the name Penderel we had to discover how Edna Sinnott Moss was descended from the brothers. We knew that the connection was not via her mother, Bridget Sinnott, and therefore we traced her father’s ancestry and discovered the following.
Henry Robinson Moss was the son of Henry Edwards Moss and grandson of Henry Moss. (Now the story of Henry Moss is an extremely interesting story in itself and worth a mention in later blogs). Henry Moss married Matilda Hill, the daughter Richard Edwards Hill in Birmingham, Warwickshire. Richard Edwards Hill was the son of Richard Hill and Magdalene Howe, the daughter of William Howe and Elizabeth Edwards. Major William Howe was the son of Thomas Howe, who was the son of Thomas Howe and Catherine Penderel. Thomas Howe was the son of Richard Howe and Mary Penderel and Thomas Howe’s wife and cousin, Catherine Penderel, was the daughter of William Penderel of Boscobel and his wife Mary. William Penderel and his sister Mary Howe were the children of William Penderel, caretaker of Boscobel and his wife, Dame Joan.
The following newspaper article confirmed the descent of Edna Sinnott Moss to the famed Penderel family. From “The Argus” 30 November, 1954. “Quest ends. A quest that began in London magazine ‘John o’ London’s’ then came out here to Melbourne, finishes with this letter from Miss (or perhaps Mrs.) Alice Brown, Alwyn st., Croydon: Edna de Broughe, of Croydon, is the woman you were seeking. She has an oak tree grown from an acorn from the tree in which Charles II hid from Cromwell, and her family receives an annuity begun by Charles. Her husband’s ancestors owned Boscobel, the estate on which the famed tree grew. Their name was Pendrell. Mrs de Broughe’s son, next-in-line for the annuity and family crest, is 15-year-old Henry Pendrell de Broughe. The annuity continues so long as there are Pendrells.” This article has a couple of inaccuracies as it was not from Edna’s husband but from her father whose ancestor was William Pendrell/Penderel and the family did not own Boscobel.
Edna’s great grandfather, Henry Moss, named his home in Melbourne “Boscobel”. The oak tree in Edna de Broughe’s garden in Croydon was cut down by the subsequent owners after the family sold their home. Harry de Broughe passed away earlier this year, but “C” was able to provide him and his family with details of his interesting ancestry.