Elizabeth Kester's Ancestors

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Note: Before 1752 the year began on March 25th. Dates between January 1st and March 24th were at the end of the year, not the beginning.

Hermanus Kester was born on January 2, 1703/04 in Germantown, Pennsylvania, (now part of Philadelphia). He was the fourth of six children born to Johannes Kester and Elizabeth Cassell. Hermanus was a member of the Kingwood, New Jersey Monthly Meeting of Friends (Quakers). (Kingwood Friends Meeting House photo on left.) When he was 29, he married 21 year-old Anne Large in Bucks County, Pennsylvania in 1733. In the Chesterfield Monthly Meeting Minutes of October 5, 1732 it reads “Harman Caster of Buckingham and Anne Large daughter of Samuel Large appeared before this meeting and declared their intentions of marriage this being the first time.” A month later on November 2, they both came to the meeting and “. . .he also produced a Certificate from Wrights Town signifying his conversation & clearness in respect to marriage dated 3d : of ye 8mo; He also brought his Mother’s consent in writing, therefore they have liberty to consummate their intended marriage. Samuel Wilson is appointed to oversee at the marriage & make report to our next meeting.” At the next meeting it was reported that the marriage was nothing but orderly. So it sounds like they were married on October 3, 1732, but did not consummate the marriage until it was approved.

They lived in Quakertown, Hunterdon County, New Jersey and had ten children and were members of the Kingwood Meeting. See Anne’s bio below for children. Some researchers say Hermanus Kester died after May 11, 1780 in Kingwood, Hunterdon County, New Jersey, but do not give any supporting documentation.


Anne Large was born on May 29, 1712 probably in Burlington, New Jersey, the second of six children born to Samuel Large and Rebecca Willson. She belonged to the Chesterfield Monthly Meeting in Burlington County, New Jersey, where she married Hermanus Kester. See his bio above for more information about their marriage. (Mouse over and click on marriage record image right to enlarge in a new window/tab.) They lived in Quakertown, Hunterdon County, New Jersey and had ten children – Susanna on November 10, 1733; ancestor Elizabeth; Samuel on November 26, 1737; John on January 21, 1739/40; Rebecca on April 16, 1742; Hermanus on July 17, 1744; Peter on January 4, 1746/47; Paul on May 26, 1749; Thomas on January 24, 1752/53 and Margaret on August 10, 1755. These birth dates come from a neatly written document entitled, A Book for Regestering the Names, Times of the Births of the Children of Such who are Members of the Religious Society of the People called Quakers Belonging to their Monthly Meeting in Kingwood in Hunterdon County in the Western Division of the Province of New Jersey, found in the U.S., Quaker Meeting Records, 1681-1935 collection.

It is believed that Anne Large Kester died in 1756 in Kingwood, Hunterdon New Jersey, the year after her last child was born. She was only 43 years old.

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Samuel Large was born on August 3, 1686 in Amesbury, Essex Massachusetts. Some researchers say he was a twin, but his birth record doesn’t support this. (Mouse over and click on marriage record image right to enlarge in a new window/tab.) He was the sixth of at least eleven children born to Joseph Large and Elizabeth Simcoche (maiden name uncertain) years old.

When Samuel was 23, he was part of Burk’s Falls Monthly Meeting. He married Rebecca Willson, 32 years old, on November 2, 1710 at the Chesterfield Monthly Meeting, in Burlington County, New Jersey.They had at least five children together, see Rebecca’s bio for more about them. In 1729 the family moved from Burlington County, New Jersey to Bethlehem Township, now Franklin in Hunterdon County. Here they purchased 300 acres of farmland near Rebecca’s brother Samuel’s farm.

Samuel Large was active in the Kingwood Monthly Meeting of Friends (Quakers). In 1733 he, along with his brother-in-law Samuel Willson and others, were appointed to act as trustees for four acres of land for the use of the meeting. In 1744 and 1752 he was appointed to attend the Quarterly Meetings in other towns.  In 1754 he was appointed to visit the families of Friends at Kingwood and elsewhere and bring back a report to the monthly Meeting.

His wife Rebecca died in 1760 and two years later he married again. The New Jersey, County Marriages, 1682-1956 collection and the Kingwood Meeting Monthly Minutes both record that on October 14, 1762 a marriage between Samuel Large Sr. and Elizabeth Myers took place. She was born about 1739, making her 23 years old at the time of marriage, much younger than Samuel who was 76 years old. Elizabeth never remarried after Samuel’s death and died on September 12, 1820 at age 81.

Samuel Large of Kingwood Township, Hunterdon County, yeoman, wrote his will on May 20, 1765. In it he mentions his sons Jacob and Robert and his wife Elizabeth. The inventory of his estate was taken on July 6th in the amount of £220.17. The will was proved on July 26, 1765. Samuel died on June 9, 1765 in Kingwood, and was buried on June 11th in the Kingwood Burying Ground.  His memorial taken from the Kingwood Meeting Monthly Minutes reads as follows:

“This our said Antient Friend Samuel Large Departed this Life at his House in Kingwood, The 9th. Day of the 6th Month 1765, and was decently Inter'd in Friends Buring place there. He was Religiously Enclined when young in years (as he related at times) By being Early Visited, insomuch, he thought he could freely Declare to others of the Goodness & merciful kind dealings of God to his Soul. But for want of Giving diligent heed to the inshineings of that inward Light which had Measureably Redeemed him, he came to a loss of the Sweet and Heavenly Communion which he had been made a Sharer of, and began to join with Folly and Vanities which youth is apt to, but in Process of time being re-Visited by an All Merciful God, Gave up to bear the Cross, and about the Thirtieth Year of his Age, he was made willing to give up to bear a publick Testimony, & to Declare to others what God had done for his Soul, which Testimony was Living and Powerful, & Tending to the refreshing and Watering of the Lords Heritage and People, being often concer'd, where his Lot was cast, to invite and persuade people to seek the Lord for themselves that So they might know the work of Regeneration wrought and Completed in and for themselves, he freely gave up to Spend both his time and substance on Truths account, when call'd thereto.
He visited Several Provinces on this Continent, and Some divers times in his Younger years he was diligent in attending Meetings both for Worship and Discipline, and Quarterly and yearly meetings  when in Health and ability of Body, he was a Generous kind open hearted Friend ready to do good to all, but especially to the Household of Faith, very ready in assisting the Servants and Messengers of Christ, when Traveling on that account.
He brought up his Children in Plainess of Speech and Aparel, a great Encourager of his Family and others, in attending Meetings, that they might discharge their Duties which they Owe unto their maker. In the Later part of his days, when old, he  met with Exercises & great Difficulties, Yet (tho in his declining age, and Natural Capacities weak) We have good reason to believe, as to an inward State of Mind, he Lived past & through them all, and that lie Died in Peace with the Lord and in good will to all mankind And is Entered into Rest and Reaps the Reward of the Faithful, where Troubles and Exercises are at an End.


Rebecca Willson was born on April 14, 1677 in Malton, Yorkshire County, England. (Mouse over and click on her birth record image right to enlarge in a new window/tab.) She was the third of at least four children born to Robert Willson and Anne Staineridge. Her birth record is listed in the England and Wales, Non-Conformist Record Indexes, which indicates they weren’t part of the Church of England. She was raised as a Quaker, attending the Malton Monthly Meeting, which, as I understand it, was part of the Scarborough Quarterly Meeting. Malton is about 24 miles west of Scarborough. (It should be noted that the Malton Monthly Meeting was merged with neighboring Scarborough Monthly Meeting in 1788 to form the Pickering Monthly Meeting.)

When she was about five-years-old, in the Spring of 1682, she came with her family on the ship Welcome to Philadelphia. But the family soon settled in Burlington County, Chesterfield Township, New Jersey.

Rebecca was a member of the Chesterfeld Monthly Meeting when, on November 2, 1710, she married there, Samuel Large, who was nine years younger than she was. (Mouse over and click on marriage record image left to enlarge in a new window/tab.) They had at least five children together – Samuel about 1711, in what was Burlington County, Pennsylvania; ancestor Anne; Jacob about 1714 in Kingwood; Robert about 1716 in Kingwood; and Joseph born about 1718 in Falls,Wyoming County, Pennsylvania. Some researchers say there was another daughter named Rebecca born about 1720 in Kingwood, but she it is uncertain if she is their daughter. It should be noted that these children’s names, birth years and places have been estimated by other researchers. This researcher has not found any birth records for these children except for ancestor Anne.

Rebecca Willson Large died about 1760 in Kingwood, Hunterdon County, New Jersey at the age of 83. She was probably buried in the Friends Ground at Kingswood, New Jersey (Now Quakertown).

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Joseph Large was born about 1646 in Hingham, Norfolk County, Massachusetts to William Large and Rebecca (maiden name unknown). He became a weaver. When he was about 27, he married Elizabeth Simcoche in Amesbury, Essex County, Massachusetts in March of 1673. (Some researchers say they married on Long Island, in Kings County-Brooklyn, New York.) They had at least eleven children; see Elizabeth below for more on this.

Joseph took Oath of Allegiance at Amesbury, Massachusetts on December 20, 1677, and was one of the original settlers there. As a soldier and a member of the "training band,” in May of 1680, he signed the petition requesting a conductor and leader for the band. After his military service, the family moved to Long Island, New York, probably to be nearer to his patents. Then in the mid to late 1680’s, about the same time that his father left New York, they moved to Burlington County, New Jersey, then to Bucks County, Pennsylvania and settled in Falls Township. In a deed dated “4-7-1687 . . . for £100 paid, a tract of land [200 acres] in Buckingham Township to Joseph Large, weaver.” Joseph and his brother, Henry Large were among the earliest settlers in Buckingham Township and were members of the Falls Meeting.

Joseph wrote his will on February 9, 1705, listing his occupation as weaver. The will was proved on September 16, 1709 in the Philadelphia County Court. Joseph Large died on July 26, 1709 in Bristol Township, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, at the age of 63. He was probably buried in the Falls Meeting Burying Ground.


Elizabeth Simcoche was born about 1651 in Wyoming County, Pennsylvania, to unknown parents. She married Joseph Large in March of 1673 and had at least eleven children.  The first seven were born in Amesbury, Essex County, Massachusetts, and the others in Falls, Bucks County, Pennsylvania – Joseph on September 4, 1673; John about 1675; Richard in 1678; Mary in 1681; Ebenezer in June of 1684; twins Elizabeth (some say her name was Esther) and ancestor Samuel on August 3, 1686; Jacob about 1688, the first child born in Pennsylvania; Daniel about 1690 (some say his name was David); Henry on October 10, 1697; and Jonathan on August 8, 1699. Some researchers say there was another son born about 1674 in Amesbury named Thomas, but there aren’t documents to support this.  Other researchers believe that Ester and David were additional children, but again, no documents have been found to confirm them.

Elizabeth Simcoche Large died on May 7, 1727 in Fallas Township, Bucks County, Pennsylvania. She was probably buried in the Falls Meeting Burying Ground (mouse over picture left) with her husband.

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Robert Willson was born about 1650, probably in or near Scarborough, Yorkshire County, England, to unknown parents. He married widow Anne Witham in Scarborough on October 9, 1672. (Many researchers have their marriage in May, but the hand written document says the 9th day of the 8th month. Mouse over and click on image right to enlarge in a new window/tab.) Their marriage is recorded in the Register of the Yorkshire Quarterly Meeting of the Society of Friends (Quakers) and states that the marriage was held in Anne's house in Scarborough, within the limits of the Pickering Monthly Meeting of Friends. The record also states that Robert was a bachelor and Ann the widow of Robert Witham. Twenty-one Friends signed the record as witnesses and among them was a Danill Wilson. Their marriage intention was also recorded there in a bond dated May 1, 1672. This bond was also recorded in the minutes of the Monthly Meeting of Pickering and the Monthly Meeting of Malton, both are in the Scarborough area. (It should be noted that the Pickering and Malton Monthly Meetings were merged with neighboring Scarborough Monthly Meeting in 1788 to form the Pickering Monthly Meeting.) Robert and Anne had at least four children – see Anne’s bio below for details.

The records of the Scarborough Society of Friends state that on March 2, 1682, Robert was “dismissed to the care of their friend's in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.” Robert, with his wife and family then traveled on the ship, Welcome, the same ship William Penn took later that year, and settled in Philadelphia. They then moved to Chesterfield, Burlington, New Jersey, which is within the limits of the Chesterfield Monthly Meeting of Friends, where they were members and where Robert probably farmed.

Robert and Anne brought with them to America a Breeches Bible, printed between 1606 and 1618, bearing the inscription, John Willson his book. This rare Bible has been entrusted to the Friends Historical Society Library at Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania. Robert's autograph appears on one page of the Bible and those of his son Samuel and daughter Rebecca on another. These original signatures show the surname spelled as Willson. Another interesting object brought to America by Robert and Anne is a large cupboard. The last known owner of the cupboard was Florence W. Green Ewing of West Grove, Chester County Pennsylvania. It has always been owned by a Willson descendent.

There is a survey report dated January of 1684 that states that Robert owned land on the south side of Crosswicks Creek, NJ. He is mentioned many times in the records of the Chesterfield Monthly Meeting, New Jersey Society of Friends, which was established in 1684. The first reference is as follows: “At ye monthly meeting ye 8th of ye 12th month (February), 1684, at ye place aforesaid, (Francis Davenport's house, near Crosswicks Creek, now called Chesterfield in West Jersey), Robert Murflin did signify there was a difference betwist him and William Black and he desired that it might be ended.” It was ordered that Thomas Farnsworth and Robert Willson should speak to William Black concerning it and to give an account to the next monthly meeting. In 1685, Robert Willson was appointed as one of the trustees of the Friends Burial Grounds at Crosswicks. On December 7, 1688 Robert was selected by the Meeting as a representative to the Quarterly Meeting.

In 1688, Robert was appointed constable for Chesterfield Township, which indicates that he must have been a resident for some time. He was a member of the Grand Jury, which met at Burlington, NJ in February of 1688. Robert was also a member of the General Assembly in 1697 and his name appears among the Quaker members of the House of Representatives of West Jersey, “to uphold the interests of the King,” in 1696 - 1697. Consequently, the descendents of Robert Willson are eligible for membership in the Society of Colonial Wars, due to his legislative service.

A tract of land, “the thirtieth part of a property,” lying in and near the town of Burlington, N. J., was bought on Jan. 12, 1695, by Robert Willson from John Hutchinson. From this tract he sold to Daniel Smith, a merchant of Burlington, “a water lot, house lots, and town bound lots in the town of and town bounds of Burlington in 1698.” The deed records him as, “Robert Willson, yeoman of Crosswicks Creek, Burlington County.” In 1702, Robert purchased 260 acres of land from Richard and Susanna Stockton, bordering on Crosswicks Creek, and probably adjoining lands already owned by him. This land was left to Robert’s son, Samuel, who sold it in 1733 to Henry Coate.

The last notice of Robert Willson in the books of the Chesterfield Monthly Meeting of Friends occurred on February 2, 1709/10, when his death was recorded as an overseer and the meeting appointed Jo Bunting to fill his office. The New Jersey Abstracts of Wills list Robert Willson of Chesterfield, Burlington County on March 27, 1708, as making a nuncupative will, in which he spoke to his wife, Anne, and son, Samuel. He mentioned his daughter, ancestor Rebecca; son-in-law, Cornelius Empson; his granddaughter, Mary Empson; and grandson, Robert Willson. His wife and son were made executors. An inventory of the personal estate of Robert and Anne Willson, both deceased, was made in December of 1709. It amounted to 181 pounds, 6½ shillings, and was conducted by Anthony Woodward, Thomas Foulkes, and John Thom. He is probably buried in the Friends Burial Grounds at Crosswicks.

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Anne Staineridge was born about 1652 in Scarborough, Yorkshire, England. Her ancestry is truly a mystery.  Many researchers say her maiden name was Hoag or Hogg and her parents could have been James and Marjorie Hoag, but documentation for this does not exist.  But documentation does exist for a more likely maiden name, that of Staineridge or Stainridge of Whitby, Yorkshire. This documentation comes in the form of the will of Thomas Staineridge, written in “Scarborough the ffifth day of the Month Commonly called January Anno Dom One thousand Six hundred Seventy”  and other Yorkshire Quarterly Meeting Minutes.

Anne had married Robert Witham and they had a daughter named Susana on November 29, 1668, who was baptized in the Church of England on March 27, 1669 in Hutton Bushel, which is only about 7 miles west of Scarborough. This seems to indicate that Anne wasn’t a Quaker, at the time of Susana’s birth.

In his will Thomas Staineridge wrote:

I give unto Susanna Witham, daughter of Anne Witham, my sister, tenn pounds in money which she my said sister Anne oweth mee to her and her heirs forever.  . . .  I give unto Robert Staineridge, my brother, three elevenths part of all my aforesaid estate to him and his heirs forever and other three elevenths part unto Anne Witham my sister to her and her heirs forever and other three elevenths part unto Ffrances Staineridge my sister to her and her heirs forever and the other two elevenths part unto my sister Elizabeth Dickinson wife of George Dickinson to her and her heirs forever and I do. . . . I do further appoint them the said Robert Staineridge my brother, Anne Witham, Ffrances Staineridge and Elizabeth Dickinson my sisters joynt executors of this my last will and testament In witness whereof I have hereunto sett my hand and seals this day and year above written.”

In 1678 an entry into the Yorkshire Quarterly Meeting Minutes states that Robert Wilson of Whitby and Robert Stainridge of Whitby were involved in a difference with George Allatson concerning money he owed them. George was withholding payment because he claimed the deceased Thomas Stainridge owed him money. The Quarterly Meeting instructed the Monthly Meeting to find out is this was true and if so, the executors, including the wife of Robert Wilson, ought to pay. Years later in June of 1683, after Robert and Anne left for America, the Monthly Meeting reported that they had been spoken to George several times but “He will make neither answer nor payment unless forced by Law.” So the Quarterly Meeting judged Robert Wilson was not to blame and he is to be “Left to his freedom.” Thomas’ will and this record support Anne being in close relationship with the Staineridges, strongly suggesting she was one of them.

Records exist in the England, Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 collection, that confirm the existence of the Staineridges in Whitby, Yorkshire, some with the same names in Thomas’ will, but none for an Anne. They all had a father named Robert. There is another record that shows the marriage of a Robert Stainrig to Elisabeth Dowson on February 11, 1658 in Whitby. These folks could be their parents. There is another possibility- she may not have been a full sister of Thomas Staineridge. They may share the same mother, but not father. Yet another possibility is that Robert Witham was a half brother to Thomas. So Anne's maiden name remains somewhat of a mystery.

Anne’s first husband, Robert Witham died and she then married Robert Willson in 1672. Five months before their marriage, on May 1, 1672, they signed a bond concerning Anne's child by her marriage to Robert Witham. The handwritten bond was copied three times in the minutes of the Pickering, Malton, and Scarborough Meeting Minutes, and is also listed in the Whitby Register. The bond states that, “Tho Staindridge, deceased bro: to the said Anne” left £10 to Anne's child (Susana) by her marriage to Robert Witham. This confirms that the Anne Witham who married Robert Willson, in the England, Marriages, 1538–1973 collection record, is the same Anne that Thomas spoke of in his will. The Bond continues to state that Robert Willson and Ann Witham would give bond to double the amount, before they married, and when Susana was of age or married, she will get the £20. (Mouse over and click on image right to enlarge in a new window/tab.)

Anne and Robert Willson had at least four children, all born in Scarborough – Sarah on February 14, 1672/73; Deborah on November 21, 1674 who died at age 12; ancestor Rebecca; and Samuel, born on July 1, 1681. (Mouse over and click on image left to enlarge in a new window/tab.) In the England and Wales, Non-Conformist Record Indexes (non Church of England), there is another child, a boy named Robert born on the same day as Rebecca, April 14, 1677, to John and Ann Willson in Scarborough. This record is in the same record set as their other children’s birth records, so many researchers include Robert as their child. But the original and official copy images of Rebecca’s birth record does not have a twin listed. This researcher believes that the transcriber who created the Robert birth record, simply misread the name Rebecca for Robert!

The exact date of Anne’s death has not been recorded. Since the inventory taken after her husband's death covered the personal estate of both Robert and Anne, she died before December of 1709 in Chesterfield, Burlington, New Jersey.  Anne Staineridge Willson is probably buried with her young daughter and husband in the Chesterfield Friends Burying Ground.


William Large was born between 1610 and 1620 in Hingham, Norfolk County, England.  Some researchers say his parents were Jervice Large and Phebe Lee but documentation cannot be found to support this.  There was however, a Jervis Large, living in Scituate, Plymouth, working as a servant, who came from Kent County, England, who died and was buried on August 9, 1636. He could have been William’s father.

William married Rebecca (maiden name unknown, but some say it was Large also) in Hingham County, England, prior to their arrival by ship in Massachusetts in 1635. Rebecca and William were about the same age. William’s name is on a list of new arrivals of Bare Cove, which later was renamed Hingham. These new arrivals received house-lots, drawn on September 18, 1635, under the direction of Rev. Peter Hobart.

William and Rebecca settled in Hingham and had three children born there – John was born about 1639 and married Phoebe Lee on November 1, 1659 (this may be how the name Phebe Lee was mistakenly identified as William’s mother); ancestor Joseph; and Henry, born about 1648.  It is believed that the family moved from Hingham to Cape Cod, then to Long Island, New York, and in about 1690, moved to Hunterdon County, New Jersey. Most researchers believe they died in New Jersey about 1701, but no official government, town, land, church nor cemetery record has ever been found to document their whereabouts after leaving Hingham. 

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