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Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Going back further with the Cookes


Like the O’Rorkes, the Cooke’s have a long history that can be traced back many centuries. I spoke recently with a fellow family historian, Kieran Cooke, Kieran lives in county Galway and is a very prominent name in modern Cooke genealogy, and he saw one of my posts on a genealogical website and asked to speak to me. The most amazing conversation ensued, he said that he had gathered DNA from various Cooke’s, to see if there was a relative connection between him and them. He had contacted one of the Kilmacow Cooke’s, and proved that he was related to him through a DNA test. I asked him where he was going with this, and then he lay down the line. He said that he had traced his family back to 16th century county Carlow, where the Coke family had a stately home in Oak Park (formerly Painstown), just outside Carlow town. The Cokes had to change their name, so as to keep their home, it’s a story for another blog, they changed their name to Cooke. Prior to living in Carlow, Kieran informed me that they came from British nobility, based mainly around Norfolk.
Now, my grandmother’s father was John Cooke, who was born in Ullid, near Kilmacow in 1858. His father was Patrick Cooke, and his father was Thomas Cooke, supposing that they were around thirty five when their children were born, this would put Thomas as being born around 1775.
I was also informed by Kieran that there is a grave in old Shankill church graveyard in Paulstown, county Kilkenny with the inscription:
“Erected by Michael Cooke in the memory of his father Thomas Cooke, late of Kellymount, died 16 December 1801, age 70 years. Headstone carved by John Brennan, stone-cutter, Royal Oak”

I feel that this Thomas is possibly the father of Thomas(1775) Amazing to see the connection between Kilkenny and Royal Oak, county Carlow, Kellymount is about one mile west of Paulstown.
Like the O’Rorkes, the Cooke’s seem to play their part in history, just to summarise what I have briefly read, but Cavaliers, James II of Britain, and Oliver Cromwell all play a part in the Cooke history. I will at some point write a larger blog dedicated to that history, but that is way down the line, and I have to study it a bit too.

32 comments:

  1. Hi,

    I'd be fascinated to find out more about the Coke/Cookes as I believe I and some other researchers I'm in contact with are related.

    In particular I'd love to know more about the change of name from Coke to Cooke.

    Also, I'd like to know how to get access to a copy of "The Cookes of the Cavaliers" or get in touch with Dr Kieran Cooke.

    Any help would be much appreciated.

    Cheers,

    Stuart Anderson
    stuartanders@hotmail.com

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  2. Hi Stuart

    Thank you very much for your interest in my blog.

    I have passed on your email address to Kieran Cooke, and he should be in touch soon.

    So, how are you related to the Cooke? Have you anything to do with my grandmothers family from south Kilkenny/Waterford city? If you do, I'd like to know more.

    As you have read my blog on the Cooke, I will just add that apparently that when Cromwell and his men were working their way through Ireland, apparently the Coke family that lived in Painstown, Carlow at the time, changed their name to Cooke, apparently this was the same name as the lord chief justice of Britain at the time, who was apparently a close friend of Cromwell. The newly named Cooke's claimed to be related to this Cooke in Britain, Cromwell sympathized with them, and apparently let them keep their estate!

    Later on in the late 1700's the last of the Cooke's of Painstown sold the estate to the DeBruin family. Painstown is still there nowadays, it's called Oak Park, It is now some sort of agricultural research place for the Irish Government, I went there one day I was down in Carlow, but couldn't get in as it was closed and i didn't want to risk trespassing. next time i'm in Carlow town I shall arrange to go in and have a look. Apparently their is a grave yard in their with Cooke graves in it. There is also a tomb in there, and it belongs to the Cooke's, but the coat of arms that is above it is apparently a Coke coat of arms! So if you are studying the Cooke's the Cooke's coat of arms is wrong and should be Coke for this branch of the Cooke's.

    I hope this has been some help to you, and that kieran will be in touch with you soon.

    All the best

    Pete

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    1. Hi Pete,

      Thankyou so much for passing on my email address to Dr Cooke. I look forward to getting in contact.

      I'm in contact with a number of people who are researching a Cooke line from Cookes in Dublin.

      Our Cookes go back to Dublin around 1700 with a number of Richard Cookes, one of whom married into the Burleigh and Langford families.

      What peaked my interest in Painstown Cookes was getting in contact with a third cousin Jestyn Coke in England who revealed that two lines of the Cooke descendants changed their name to "Coke" in the late 1800's.

      Their announcement in The Times of 1884 read in part:

      "ASSUMPTION OF ORIGINAL FAMILY NAME: I, the undersigned Arthur Coke, hitherto known as Arthur Cooke .... give notice that I have assumed my original family name of Coke, which was changed previous to 1723 to Cooke, by my ancestor Charles Coke, descendant of Clement Coke, of Paynstoun, County Carlow, Ireland, sixth son of Sir Edward Coke, Lord Chief Justice of England..."

      Family stories passed down through his family support this reference.

      Jestyn has been interested for some time to confirm this link to Clement Coke, however he hasn't been able to find a link back further than Richard Cooke, merchant in Dublin around 1700.

      The family stories told of ancestors changing their name from Coke to Cooke and that of one of the ancestors losing right to a large estate for fighting on the wrong side of the civil war.

      This is certainly reminiscent of the Painstown Cookes, though the actual geneological link eludes us.

      Thank you for your help and your enjoyable blog!

      Regards,

      Stuart

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  3. Hi Pete,

    Very interesting article, and great photo of your grandfather!

    I'm descended from the Cookes of Hacketstown, Co. Carlow. They owned a large granite house in the townsland of Rathnagrew. I've been trying to discover more about this branch so I thought I'd mention it here in case it means anything to anyone.

    In the graveyard of the Church of Ireland church at Hacketstown I found a Cooke grave where a William Cooke of Griffinstown, Co. Wicklow is buried there, along with his wife Elizabeth and son Robert Disney Cooke.

    Griffinstown is quite far from Hacketstown so I'm assuming the Cooke family who lived in Griffinstown originated from Hacketstown, and were likely to be related to my own branch.

    I intend to check the estate records for the area and hope to be able to go back further.

    So far I know the Cookes were living in Hacketstown from at least the early 1700s as I found a lease for a William Cooke living in the townsland of Monastill (adjacent to Rathnagrew) dating from 1725.

    Hopefully some of this will mean something to somebody. If all else fails a DNA test may provide a connection to the Cookes of Painstown.

    All the best,

    Shane

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    1. Hi Shane, i think you were looking for information regarding o'tooles from Hacketstown a few years back but the link is dead!- Nicholas o'toole is part of our family tree and Id be happy to forward on the bits we have if your still looking for links! tennisallwin@yahoo.ie

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    2. Hi Shane, i think you were looking for information regarding o'tooles from Hacketstown a few years back but the link is dead!- Nicholas o'toole is part of our family tree and Id be happy to forward on the bits we have if your still looking for links! tennisallwin@yahoo.ie

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  4. Hi Shane
    Thanks for your contribution to this post, Can't say I have heard of Cookes in Hacketstown, mine are actually in southern Kilkenny, All I know is that Dr Kieran Cooke got in touch with me and said that if Iwas descended from those Cookes then DNA says that I am descended from the Painstown Cookes too.
    Though hacketstown is really only a short hop from Painstown so I think you'd be safe in assuming that they came from there.
    If you'd like i'll pass on your details to Kieran, just say and i'll do it.
    One aspect of your post that intrigues me is the name Disney, is Elizabeth Disney a descendent of the famous county Carlow Disneys that Walt Disney himself claims descendancy from?
    Another point worth noting here in relation to Cooke descendancy is the fact that 'A genealogical and heraldic History of the Commoners of Great ..., Volume 2' a publication about the nobility of Britain and Ireland is available online and does show articles on the Cookes and the Cokes too, it can be found if you search ;cooke' and 'painstown' on the google book website.
    One day it will become clear to us all, and if anyone can add anything to this to show any of us the right direction, then please post here or send me an email, my email is available on my profile on this page.
    pete

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    1. Hi Pete and Shane
      I have just stumbled on this blog during my research. I to am related to the Cookes of Griffinstown House. My link has recently raised an interesting story and now with Shanes story it could add a new twist. My Great great grandfather is also Robert Disney Jones and he married Sarah Spencer Cooke of Griffinstown in the 1840s. The relationship was not approved of (Don't know by who) and they supposedly ran off to get married. They moved to Canada and eventually returned after his father passed away. My Robert D Jones mother is Mary Disney daughter of Robert Disney and she too is buried in Hacketstown cemetery. I now wonder were my Robert and Sarah 1st cousins?

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    2. Hi Nigel,
      Sorry for the delay, I have been a little neglectful with my blog, but hope to make some small contributions here and there in the near future.
      Maybe the marriage between Robert and Sarah was a religion thing, it usually is in Ireland around that time?
      I do believe the Disney's of Hackettstown are descendants of Walt Disney himself and that there is a neglected cemetery there in Hackettstown with many Disney's in it?
      The Cooke name in Ireland particularly for your descendant Sarah, conidering that she was in Ireland at that time ultimately descend back to the Cookes of Painstown, County Carlow and ultimately back to the Cokes of Norfolk,UK.
      There is a possibility that Robert and Sarah were cousins too, this isn't uncommon, particularly in rural Ireland at the time, I have found it happen over and over in my own family history, so if that is the case with me, then I am obviously not alone, a good observation, and hopefully after 3 years, you may have found the connection.
      If you'd like to contact me my email is ptrcrrn@gmail.com
      But I do prefer to keep it all here on the blog for others to read, unless it is of a sensitive or personal nature.
      All the best
      Pete

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  5. I seem to be a direct relative. My grandmother was Mary Cooke, Bridget's sister. I have several pictures of the brothers I'd be happy to share.

    My email address is tmotzenbacker@gmail.com

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    1. Hi Tony,
      Seems then we are 2nd cousins then!
      I know it has been three years, but I have been rather neglectful with my blog, but this Cooke thing seems to throw so much interest from worldwide in my direction, and it would seem a waste to neglect it.
      My email is ptrcrrn@gmail.com, if you'd like to contact me, I will of course contact you too, I would love to see the pictures you have of the brothers and sisters of our grandparents and maybe put them up here as a new page soon.
      All the best Cuz!
      Pete

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  6. Unknown30 March 2016 at 15:24
    Hello. I found this blog very interesting. Our family name is cooke. My dad was thomas cooke who passed away recently. His father was michael cooke and his granfather john cooke who lived in stephenstown near two mile house kildare. His father before that was william cooke i believe because my great granfather named one of his sons after him who mived to america.his name was william cooke. I am trying to research the link between us and was told before we could be decendents from cookes oftl the cavaliers. I also was aware of the grave in painstown. Thomas cooke. All the names mentioned on that gravestown. And michael william and john are all common names used among my relations. I would love to get a link. I did come accriss a william vooke who married a mary in a placd not far ftom stfphenstown think it was athy and i did at one stage think this could be my great great grsnparents but have to still prove this. The research im doing seems to be reaching in the direction of carlow. And i do think that the cooke family in painstown have the exact same names john william and thomas that can be found right through my family. My email is velizabethc1@hotmail.com if u wish to contact me with some information to back up my research. Thank you.. vanessa cooke

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  7. Following my earlier emsil. The earliest link thats confirmed via our family tree is my great grsnfather john cooke married a women called mary duffy in late 1800s . I tracked their marriage cert and it stated thst they married on 8th oct 1878 in ballymore eustace but they lived in stephenstown. I found out through that johns father was called william cooke and his mother mary. Then by acciddnt one day i csme accross a marriage which took place in 1845 athy where a maria or mary i think is another name gor maria married a william cooke. And i believe these are my relations because they match with the names mentioned in my grear granfsthers msrriage cert as my great granfathers parents. I hope this makes things a little clearer where im at with my research at present.

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  8. Unknown30 March 2016 at 15:24
    Hello. I found this blog very interesting. Our family name is cooke. My dad was thomas cooke who passed away recently. His father was michael cooke and his granfather john cooke who lived in stephenstown near two mile house kildare. His father before that was william cooke i believe because my great granfather named one of his sons after him who mived to america.his name was william cooke. I am trying to research the link between us and was told before we could be decendents from cookes oftl the cavaliers. I also was aware of the grave in painstown. Thomas cooke. All the names mentioned on that gravestown. And michael william and john are all common names used among my relations. I would love to get a link. I did come accriss a william vooke who married a mary in a placd not far ftom stfphenstown think it was athy and i did at one stage think this could be my great great grsnparents but have to still prove this. The research im doing seems to be reaching in the direction of carlow. And i do think that the cooke family in painstown have the exact same names john william and thomas that can be found right through my family. My email is velizabethc1@hotmail.com if u wish to contact me with some information to back up my research. Thank you.. vanessa cooke

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    1. Hi Vanessa,
      Dr Kieran Cooke, assured me a few years ago, that all Cookes in Ireland with a proof of 100 years or so of family history have descended from the Cookes of Painstown, county carlow, and ultimately Norfolk, England, though like yourself I have this same problem of proving the connection between my cookes and Painstown, and also like yourself, I am slowly moving toward Carlow, I have gone from Waterford town to Kilmacow, to Kellymount near paulstown, but have this problem that I know the last Cooke left Painstown around 1788, and my direct line going back to Paulstown before that, so possibly a cousin to the last Painstown cooke? Please feel free to contact me via email @ ptrcrrn@gmail.com. I think that we are both approaching Painstown from two completely different angles, but both have this common bond :)
      I haven't disected what you have written, but I am really interested, and may come back with something here soon.
      All the best, Pete.

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    2. I was wondering if there is any more information regarding the cookes of griffithstown and hacketstown as it is the first reference i have came accross to a william cooke. My ggg grandad name was william and he was married to a lady called mary. He is referenced on my gg grandads his sons john cooks marriage cert on the 8th of october 1878.his first granchild william was born on the 2nd nov 1867 in stephenstown. Unfortunately i know very little about this william and would love more information. I did come accross a marriage that took place in 1845 between a william cooke and mary or maria but no 2nd name of his wife is mentioned. This marriage could of took place in athy. This could possibly be my ggg grandads marriage but not sure. After that my ggg granfathers family would of lived in stephinstown but not sure if willism lived here too with his son john cooke. If anyone knows any information this william cooke. I would be very greatful. As im stuck in the research on my ggg grandad william cooke. I dont evdn have a date of birth for him.

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    3. Hi again Vanessa
      I really appreciate your search for your Cookes, but at present mine only really are around Kilmacow and Paulstown in Kilkenny and Painstown in Carlow, which is good distance from Hackettstown, though I would be confident that yours do hail back to Painstown eventually, but I don't even know my own back to there, I am bogged down at Shankill in the mid 1700's. Hopefully someone will see this and might have a connection with you, but sadly I cannot offer this at this moment, sorry. Pete

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  9. Thank you for replying. I was hopeing shane or nigel would see it as they talked about the cookes of griffithstown and hacketstown.

    Sean pattick adams emailed me recently researchi bridget.the pictures you put up of the cookes of kilmacow is very intetesting. The picture of pierce cooke looks exsctly like my cousin. Ive never seen such a likness and the picture you havd up of john really looks somilar to the john cooke on my family tree.how do i put pictures up here. I tried snd it wouldnt let me.

    Do uou know if bridget had any half brothers or sisters? Because if she did maybe thats how we come into it. Sean pattick adams still reckons there could be somd connection there with my family.

    Another question i wanted to ask is zbout the john cooke eho married joane kelther. I would be greatful if uou had anymore ingormation about him. :-)

    Thsnk you.

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    1. Hi Vanessa,
      The only answer to this could be that if they look similar to yours, it must be that they are first cousins, so the confusion of Kilmacow is that your gg Cooke would possibly be a brother or cousin of my gg, john, married to joanna kelter who stayed in kilmacow, your relative possibly moved from there, though there are loads of xooks around Couties Carlow and Kilkenny. Hackettstown is a long way from kilmacow in victorian time, a couple of days at least, ok, you could do it in an hour today, but they didn't have fast cars and giod rroads then.
      I will have a word with a second cousin to see if he has any knowledge of Hackettstown relatives.
      Pete.

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    2. Note to self, type ob a keyboard bot on a phone, it looks better lol!!
      Pardon my typing Vanessa :-)

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  10. Thank you pete. That would be a great help. :-)

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  11. I think what the problem is, after just reading through the replies is that in the 16 and 1700's the Cokes/Cookes expoloded out of Painstown to various parts of Ireland, mine in southern kilkenny, some stayed in Carlow, some to Tipperary and Waterford, a few went over to Galway and Sligo, and probably elsewhere in Ireland, and maybe even across the water to.
    We all want to get that connection with Painstown, and as time goes back, it just gets less and less with records, so you go trapesing aaround graveyards on cold winter days, and just look at every grave in the hope you can find that 'older' Cooke, and in the end you are clutching at straws, you know you are related to those all important Cokes/Cookes, but will haul over the internet night after night, and suddenly you see something, and then you are shot down again, Vanessa I have been there and done it too many times. But be patient, keep level headed, and focused on one subject at a time, and it will come, if I progress one day, I will come back here and try and connect us all together, and that will be a truly happy day for us all :) Pete xx

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  12. Thanks pete. Sure all we can do is keep updating this blog from time time to time hopeing something someone will say will make sense to someone. One of my living Cooke relatives told me a story of 2 brothers. One moved to Galway and the other stayed close to home around Carlow but thats all I know. I dont know which 2 brothers he was referring too.This relative also told me my relatives fought in the battle of the Boyne. If i find out any information here i will post it. I dont know if there is a document with details of those who fought in the battle of the boyne? :-)

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  13. Hi again Vanessa, I sent you an email last night, suggesting connections between us, have you seen it, reply to me by email please :-)
    P x

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  14. Hello pete. Sorry i didnt get your email uou sent only the comment you put up here. Which email did u send it to. Velizabethc1@hotmail.com or vinnycooke15@gmail.com

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  15. Hello pete. Sorry i didnt get your email uou sent only the comment you put up here. Which email did u send it to. Velizabethc1@hotmail.com or vinnycooke15@gmail.com

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  16. Velizabethc1@hotmail.com, but I have been communicating with you on that address?

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  17. Yes that address is the email i have been communicating with you on but you will get me on either.i have just sent you another 2 emails there following up on what we were discussing earlier. Thanks.

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  18. Yes that address is the email i have been communicating with you on but you will get me on either.i have just sent you another 2 emails there following up on what we were discussing earlier. Thanks.

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  19. Reviewing all the information we discussed.i have a strong feeling that the william cooke who was a brother to john cooke from ullid near kilmacow mentioned in your email to me is the relation william cooke i am stuck on. We are williams ancestors i think that means that the john cooke born in 1908 and bridget anne cooke mentioned in your family are 1st cousins of the john and bridget mentioned in my family. My bridget ann was born earlier then yours. And my john who died in 1940 was born earlier then yours. In that time and it seems tradition in that time to call your children afterother relations in your familt. Alot of the ssme names for both girls and boys are repeated all through the families.

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