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The Cobbs of Dorset, Taunton and New Jersey

Including the descendants of Clisby Cobb of North Carolina

File Manager Lyn Brudnicki



Early records of this branch of the Cobb family indicate that they came from Swanage, a town located between the Purbeck hills on the south coast of Dorset, England.

Click here to see an orientation map of England. To find the ancestral home of this family, scroll down to the bottom of the British Island. Dorset is located on the South coast on the English Channel. Swanage is not marked on the map, but is located at the tip of the thin peninsula that somewhat resembles a boot. Taunton is marked and can be found a few miles to the northwest in Somerset. This map is dated 1660, and county boundaries had changed somewhat since the Cobbs had left England for America. Use the 'Back' feature of your browser to return here.

Contrary to the claim made by some researchers, a thorough analysis of available documentation as well as DNA analysis makes it clear this particular Cobb family was in no way related to the Cobbs of County Kent, and was not descended from the lineage of Ambrose Cobbs of Virginia or any other established lines presented on this website.

Parish records, wills and registers document the events in the lives of Morgan and Alice Cobb, and their sons Nicholas, William, Richard and John. We can infer, from Alice's 1624 will, that the family was in the blacksmithing business, as she leaves "shop tools" to sons Nicholas and John (a minor). She requests them to "make certain quarrying tools for William". We know that some of the family was in the marble quarrying business...in "Bylaws of the Marblers of Corfe Castle, Co. Dorset renewed and confirmed 3rd March 1651", the names of Gorg(sic) Cobb, William Cobb, and John Cobb appear.

The Swanage parish registry records the marriage of William (Morgan) and Dorothy Savie in 1630 and the births of their children through the year 1646. When the "Parliamentary Protestation Oath" was administered in 1641, to all males over 18 in Dorset, the names of Henry and John (Swanage), Nicholas (Corfe Castle), John and George (Langton Matravers) are included.

The Cobbs emmigrate in the 1650's to Taunton, Bristol, Mass. where John, Edward and Augustine are found through land grants and sworn oaths of fidelity. Very little information exists to chronicle Edward's life in Massachusetts, probably due to a fire which destroyed many early records in Taunton in 1838. We know only that he married Mary Haskins (Hoskins) and had Edward, Jr. in 1661 and John.

Edward Jr. married Sarah Hackett, the daughter of Jabez Hackett, and had Ebenezer in 1694. Ebenezer was prominent in public affairs. He was one of the founders of the iron industry in Taunton. He ran the Squire Cobb's Forge, also known as the Cobb and Bigelow's Forge. Ebenezer married Mehitible Robinson, the daughter of Increase Robinson, Jr. of Taunton. Ebenezer and Mehitible had nine children. Many of whom were active in the iron forging business. A deed, dated 23 Feb. 1753, shows that Ebenezer's father gave him 15 acres of land in Taunton. Another deed, dated 1760, shows that Ebenezer and his wife Mehitable, transfered title to a house in Hanover, Morris County, New Jersey to their son Edward. Their son John Cobb, Sr. is known to have been the owner of a forge in partnership with Thomas Brown. John was born in Taunton. Massachusetts in 1723 and where he married Rhoda Smith in 1747. Ebenezer and his son, John relocated, along with many other members of the family to Morris County, New Jersy in the early 1750's to pursue the iron industry.

The records clearly show that John, Rhoda and their family joined the Presbyterian Church in Hanover, Morris County, New Jersey, in May, 1753 and the baptisms of their 4 oldest children taking place on 10 June 1753. Although, marrieage records indicate that Abiel, and Mehitable, children of Ebenezer and Mehitable, are in New Jersey in 1750. John Cobb-- Clisby Cobb continued the family tradition in iron forging in New Jersey until the Revolutionary War. He enlisted in 1776. From 1780 thru 1800 he amassed property in several North Carolina counties. His last forge, the Jenny Lind Forge, was built in Maiden, Catawba County, NC in 1804. He lived for ten years after his family settled in Maiden. Clisby was married to Margaret Young about 1770 in New Jersey. It is believed they had ten children. Their descendants migrated to Tennessee, Texas, Missouri, and Oklahoma.

Some descendants of John Cobb and Jane Godfrey migrated north to Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine, while the descendants of Augustine and his son Morgan stayed in Massachusetts.


Reminder: Each family line has its own separate index.

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Descendants of the Taunton Cobb Families



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