Early Hudson ancestors are difficult to trace and hard to find. Our first Hudson ancestor anyone has been able to locate with any favorable possibilities is a Henry Hudson, born about 1541 in England.
Some researchers also postulate that one Henry Hudson (Heardson), London Alderman, born in England, and died in 1555, may be an early Hudson ancestor. There is speculation he was associated with the Muscovy Company of Merchant Adventures, an English Trading Organization, and grandfather of Henry Hudson the explorer, also involved with the Muscovy Company.
The arms of Henry Hudson, the Alderman, are described as "argent, semee of fleurs de lis gules, a cross engrailed sabel." Interestingly, the livestock mark of Richard Hudson I was a fleur de leis.
Henry Hudson, the Alderman, possibly had a son named Henry, but the father of Henry Hudson, alleged ancestor and generation number 1 of this line, is not known.
1/1. Henry Hudson
Early Hudson ancestor, born about 1541 in England.
3/1. Richard Hudson I
Richard Hudson, son of William Hudson and Alice Turner, departed London August 10, 1635 aboard the Safety bound for the Virginia Plantation and settled in Accomac*, Virginia.
Richard's first wife's name is unknown, but he married a second time in 1638 to Mary Hayes, a widow about 30 years old. Along with his new wife Richard acquired two or more stepchildren and debts three times greater than the value of her estate.
Richard Hudson owned land on Hungars Creek (Hungars was one of the oldest settlements on the Eastern Shore*.), which he probably held from a very early period and appears to have been common knowledge.
Richard Hudson was possibly a coastal trader, for he is mentioned as a a mariner in 1642, Captain of his own ship and his Mate was Thomas Streete. His holdings of land, crops, a mill and warehouse, and livestock indicate his activities were likely local too.
His livestock mark was a "fleur de leis," a device associated with the Hudson coat of arms of Henry the Alderman. The fleur de leis was also the livestock mark of both Richard's sons, Henry and Nicholas, of Somerset County, Maryland.
Richard Hudson disliked Marylanders. Rivalry between Virginia and Maryland for the Chesapeake trade may have contributed, because other traders during this time were also having difficulties with the Marylanders.
Religious differences too may have contributed to his dislike of Marylanders, who were mostly Catholics. His sons, Henry and Nicholas, were closely associated with, if not themselves, Quakers. Nicholas' wife, Elizabeth Freeman, was a Quaker and Somerset County, Maryland, where they lived, was a Quaker refuge. Puritan and Catholic differences were rising in England at that time too.
According to the work of Roy D. Hudson, Richard the sailor, continued to live at Hungars Creek, married a third time to Barbara Jacob, and left a Nuncupative (spoken to witnesses) Will in 1659.
*Accomac is County Seat of Accomack County, Virginia.
*Eastern Shore is that part of Virginia in the Atlantic Ocean; an extension of the Maryland peninsula.
Richard Hudson II
Richard Hudson II was born in Accomack County, Virginia, about 1632, and died October 25, 1669 in Henrico County, Virginia. He was married about 1658 to Mary Bowman and is believed to have been the first born child of Richard Hudson I and his first wife.
It is reasonable to assume Richard was alienated from his father and other family members. His father was away (at sea?) for various lengths of time, and after his mother died, Richard was apparently indentured into the care and control of one James Bruce.
He afterward, therefore, embarked upon his separate personal fortune. In 1652, he joined a group of people traveling westward into Henrico County, Virginia. There he settled among the Bowman families on land lying in a bend on the south side of the James River.
Existing Henrico County records indicate Richard Hudson II had received from his "father" Bowman, father of Richard's wife, Mary Bowman, a gift of land known as "Roxdale."
The above mentioned records also refer to the Will of Richard Hudson II, made October 25, 1669, whereby the land known as "Roxdale" was divided between his three minor sons. This Will is now among the missing records of Henrico County.
The exact time of his decease is not determined other than Court records dating the guardianship administration of his minor sons. There appears to be no further evidence regarding the whereabouts of Mary Bowman Hudson.
Richard Hudson III
Richard Hudson III was born about 1660 in Henrico County, Virginia. He married Mary (Hall?). After the death of his father, Richard and his brothers were fostered by a guardian, Thomas Pauldon.
In a Henrico County deed passage dated December 1, 1688 Richard III mentions his father, Richard II, had a will of October 25, 1669, in which he gave the land he received from his father in law, Bowman, "Roxdale," equally to his three sons. He also stated said plantation was occupied by "Thomas Poland" and subsequent to his father's will the land was swindled from them.
Pauldon, since he was the guardian, likely took, or controlled, the land that rightfully belonged to the sons of Richard II. But it seems conditions may have been suitable to get it back, because Richard sold his share of said plantation at Roxdale to his brother, Robert Hudson, for 1600 pounds of tobacco.
Richard then left Henrico County for the frontier, which later became Amelia County. He settled at Hatcher's Run around 1706.