Archive for June, 2008

Yet again the odd way life works out amazes me. Coming back from holiday I had two emails about Inskips waiting for me. One was from a lady in Canada who was enquiring about some information I’d sent her. The other was from ebay alerting me to the sale of a sword belonging to Sydney Hope Inskip and given to him in 1917 by his father.

A little bit of digging proved this to be Sydney Hope Inskip who had died aged 22 at the Raid on Zeebrugge on the 23rd April 1918. He was a Lieutenant in the marines and had been given the sword by this father, Herbert Inskip, harbour master at Ramsgate, the year before. Sadly Herbert had died later in 1917 as well.

How nice, I thought if the sword and its sad story could be returned to the family. Herbert and his wife Gertrude, an Australian, had only had Sydney (who was born in Sydney, Australia) and he had not married – so there were no direct descendents. But I soon found that my Canadian lady correspondent was actually a first cousin once removed !!

I have no idea if she does want the sword, but I do hope it finds a home with its poignant provenance attached.

NB – The family are descendents of Harry Inskip born around 1809 in Old Warden, Bedfordshire and his wife Jane Albin from Spalding. Harry was a seed oil merchant and one time Mayor of Hertford.


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Jim Inskipt recently got in touch with us to find out if we knew anything about the unusual spelling of the name. Everyone, we are aware of, with this spelling lives in the USA (mainly centred on Pennsylvania), and it seems to be linked with the Inskeeps. How and where it was changed to an Inskip with a ‘t’ we do not have any idea – and nor does Jim. If you have any further information, do let us know.

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Old Warden Legend has it that the Inskips arrived in Bedfordshire when ‘three brothers came down from the North’. The North presumably being the Lancashire/Yorkshire border area – but not necessarily so. There were also Inskips in Northumberland and Durham at the start of the 16th century.

The first Inskip I have found mentioned in the county is in the Old Warden parish records, and is the marriage of John Inskipe to Margaret Pope in 1584. Their children are subsequently christened in Old Warden. In 1594 Thomas Inskipe marries Bridget Mills in Southill – a parish next to Old Warden. Bridget is the daughter of John Mills of Broom a hamlet near Southill and indeed Thomas and Bridget lived at Gastlyns, a farm in Broom – I am still not sure in what capacity they rented or owned part of it. (more…)

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