about Norvell's Great-Niece, your Host

Roots Country and Blues artist Lonesome Liz was dubbed 'The Female Robert Johnson' by 'Southern Fried Magazine'; honoring both her sultry contralto and the Hellhound on her trail. Her performances are heavy with Southern Gothic undertones. A natural storyteller, her words shift to expose the seamy underbelly of the South, which she translates through a mystic veil of mojo; often drawing on history along with Hoodoo and other Folk traditions.

Her performances have included Drive-by Truckers artist Wes Freed, art revolutionary Molly Crabapple, Jesco the Dancing Outlaw and she's shared a stage with Timbuk III's Pat MacDonald, The Goddamn Gallows and the .357 String Band.

Featured in the upcoming Hasil Adkins documentary, 'My Blue Star' by Ron Thomas Smith, she has she has also appeared in and directed dozens of plays as well as in an award-winning independent film, 'Leon's Aspirations'. Also a playwright, she has written and produced adaptations of both 'Faust' and Sartre's 'No Exit'.

A multi-disciplinary artist, she is also a music and fine art journalist, published primarily in 'Outlaw Magazine', 'Fine Art Magazine' and GratefulWeb.net. She was the last writer to interview Mike Seeger before his death and her Levon Helm retrospective received praise from Bob Dylan himself.

She has also been tarot, astrology and mythology editor for BellaOnline.com and Suite101.com. Her writing and photography are featured in the best-selling 'Everything Ghost Hunting Guide'. She began writing in Chicago, when Slam was first emerging and her poetry as well as her lyrics have received praise from Beat Poets Charles Plymell and Robert Brannan.

Her strong, sultry voice and powerful lyrics are captivating. Though unquestionably feminine and alluring, she describes hangings, hauntings, reckonings and shoot-outs in a way that makes you think she was not only there but participated. One of Country's true Outlaw Women, Liz blasted the boundaries of Alt Country. However it's delivered, her sultry Southern vision takes you far from the expected. It's hard to resist the spell Lonesome Liz casts when her mojo's rising...

Submissions, Press, Etc: elizabeth.bissette@gmail.com

The Pages of History

"There is no record of the adoption of this coat of arms by the Page family, but it is known to have been used at a very early date probably by the knight, Sir Hugo Page, about 1260, which was long before there was any authorized manner of recording them.

"Of the English Barons in the House of Lords (about five hundred) there are less than a dozen whose baronicies date back to the year 1400 and the earliest is 1264."

LL - So, it's likely Hugo was the first English knight to bear a coat of arms... no doubt started his career in knighthood as a page... and so was the 'first' Page.

More from Charles Page: (this book, last I was aware, is available in hard copy at Richmond's Valentine Museum). 

Sir Hugo Page of Ebor
"The real origin of the family name is not a matter of doubt, as the first reference to it appears in an old English register, where it states that Hugo de Pagham, of Ebor, Yorkshire, England, was the senior son of a feudal baron or knight.

The Arthuret Cross
Peredur, (source of the Arthurian legend of Percival), and his twin brother, Gwrgi were Kings of Ebor, believed to have overthrown their cousin, King Gwenddoleu ap Ceidio in the Battle of Arfderydd. The original of the Arthurian wizard, Merlin, Lailoken, is supposed to have been one of the few survivors of the battle.

It is hard at this point to say which noble family of York Hugo came from but it seems most possible, considering his role in history, that he was related to Alcuin of York, (link to a full text of his letters and poems compiled by a Page in 1909).

Alcuin served a similar role to Hugo's a few centuries before, acting as messenger between Charlemagne and the King of Mercia, AEthelbald. His high status with the Pope would seem to support later chosing Hugo to lead in the 8th Crusade. Alcuin claimed to be related to the father of St. Willibrord.

It is, unfortunately, impossible to know at this point. Anyone with more insight into the tangled noble houses of York pre-1200 is encouraged to contact me.

What is known is that the 70 mile stretch of Ebor was granted by William the Conqueror to his half-brother, Robert de Mortain. In 1258, the grandson of a man named Fursan de Roos and Isabel, illegitimate daughter of the Scottish King William the Lion named named Robert de Roos inherited the castle from his father, William, who died that year. Robert was the first Baron de Ros, the most ancient baronial title in the Peerage of England.

King Henry III of England
"Whoever he was before he was Page,  Hugo, in the year 1257, was entrusted with an important mission to the King of Spain, Alphonse the Wise, by Henry III, King of England. 

"It was considered a mark of great distinction that Hugo should have been chosen for this important mission as in those feudal times great discretion and care were required on the part of messengers and ambassadors. 

"King Henry was so much pleased with his diplomacy and faithful performance of this service, his mission having proven quite successful, that he was made a knight in 1260 and a proclamation was issued, giving notice that he was thereafter to be known as Sir Hugo Page. 

King Alfonso X of Castile, 'Alfonso the Wise'
From George Page: "From that time on, Page was adopted as the family name. In 1259 he is referred to as Henrico Page regarding his military service to
the king in Wasconia.

George also says: "Alas poor Hugo, for it appears that Hugo de Pageham, and others, were ordered to be captured and detained in the king's prison at de Pageham for the death of Roger de Belsham in Sussex in 1267.

A Roger de Belsham is, however, listed in the Doomsday Book of 1273 in Sussex, so perhaps he didn't die after all.

Other Notable Pages of English History

"A Robertum Page is next mentioned in a proclamation in 1266.["Close Rolls" 1264-68]

"A Richard Page and Johannes de Pabeham are also mentioned in 1267.(Henry III).

"In "Testor de Neville," written in the time of King Henry III, (October 1, 1207 – November 16, 1272),and Edward I mention is made of Philip Page.

"In the "Writs of Parliament," of the year 1300, it mentions John le Page.

"William de Pagham, brother of Hugo, was granted letters by King Henry III, to enable him to become a commander of the Crusaders in 1270, and he accordingly went to Palestine in command of a portion of the forces which engaged in the Holy Wars. 

Seige of Tunis, Eigth Crusade, 1270
"He was one of the survivors of that memorable expedition, and after enduring four years of great peril and suffering, he returned and settled in the southern part of England.

King Edward I of England

"We also read that in the year 1298, King Edward I commanded Willielmus (or William) de Pageham and certain others to appear at the city of York with their retinue and march with him into Scotland to subdue the rebellion there, (Battle of Falkirk). It is not supposed that he ever took the name of Page, but that name was used only by the descendants of Sir Hugo.

"William Page, 1590-1663, born at Harrow-on-the-Hill. Graduated at Oxford. Was author of religious books, a divine and a school teacher. He was the father of Frances Page, who's son, John was the first in Norvell's direct line to come to Virginia.

"Samuel Page, 1574 to 1630, of Bedfordshire, was the son of a clergyman. Graduated at Oxford. Was considered one of the chief poets of England during his early years, (LL: a contemporary of Shakespeare). Later became a divine and vicar of St. Nicholas at West Greenwich.

Pates Manor in 1965
Anne Boleyn and a Manor's Curse
"The Manor of Pates or Paites, about one hundred acres, in Bedfont, Middlesex, England, was owned first by John Pate and Juliane his wife and their descendants beginning in 1403-4. 
"Building air castles is the cheapest kind of architecture, as well as the most unprofitable, unless they can be so planned that in some practical way, the dreams can be worked out and made real. I do not desire to arouse the expectations of any one, as really I have little hopes that the heirs will ever secure any of the property due them from this old estate.

"It will doubtless surprise many to know that for more than eighty years a great estate in England has been awaiting claimants; said to be by far the largest estate in that country and being of almost unbelievably large value. Four years ago, (LL: Charles wrote this book in 1911), it was estimated by some, who claim to know most of its value, to amount to at least one hundred and seventy-five million pounds, which would be equal to $875,000,000.00.

King Henry III of England
"The history of the estate forms one of the most unique cases of land ownership that can be imagined, but it has been so covered up and hidden that I very much doubt if any one aside from the executors would ever be the last holders of the property, but so far have been unable to do so and we are in doubt as to who the first large property owner of the family was, although undoubtedly Sir Hugo Page received quite a landed estate at the time that he was knighted in the year 1260, by King Henry III, and other amounts have been received at various times by other prominent members of the family.

"The so-called "Page Estate" was, at the time of the four brothers, who held it last, a tract composing an area of some sixty square miles including about a third of the County of Middlesex, England, and extending over into Hertfordshire.

"The town of Harrow is approximately the center of the estate. In early years this was a rather rough country, part of it covered by forests and not supposed to be of high value, but now some of the finest residential districts of London are on this property and it is practically all suburban area which has been highly developed during the past few decades.

"It includes also some rich agricultural districts towards the Berkshire and Hertfordshire borders. The estate also is said to include many historic properties such as Twyford Abbey, Wembly Park, Sudbury Priory, Harrow Rectory, and the playing fields of Harrow School, which is considered one of the best schools in England, though, of course, not as prominent as Oxford.

Queen Anne Boleyn
"It is stated that while the Page family, who were a very important clan in the history of England through the Middle Ages, had considerable property, still a very large amount was added to it, when the land which was the property of the Knights of St. John in Kilburn was given to one Robert Page on the suppression of the monasteries about the year 1540. 

"Another statement is, that at the time of the trial of Lady Anne Boleyn, wife of King Henry VIII. Edmund Page was a member of the Grand Jury which convicted her and was probably very influential in the awarding of the verdict, which enabled the king to secure a divorce. He rewarded this Edmund Page, by giving him the properties which he had confiscated from the Catholic monasteries, nunneries, etc.

A Young King Henry, VIII of England
"A local legend relates that the evicted nuns foretold that those who succeeded them in the property would reach the climax of ambition and then disappear.

"At any rate, this is exactly what has happened. After the Page family acquired this large property from Henry VIII, it was greatly enlarged by them through the centuries, until it finally reached the hands of the last four brothers, Richard, Francis, William, and Henry, and was passed from one to the other, as none of these parties left descendants.

"Henry Page, the last holder of the estate, died in 1829 at Marble Arch, not far from Hyde Park, London. More about the Page millions from an Austrailian newspaper around the time Charles' book was published.

"It appears also from other records that a certain Richard Page, in the year 1542, acquired the Manor of Wembly, which was once a part of the nunnery lands of the Knights of St. John. The property was later somewhat divided, being owned by five different families of the Pages, but all finally coming into the hands of Henry Page.

Kingsbury, the Page Manor at Wembly
"Records seem to show that his older brother, Richard Page, was born July 20, 1747, and died in 1803. Richard, Francis and William were never married. Henry married, but he had no children, and his wife died before he did.

Another Victim of the Nuns Curse?

 The Rosewell Ghost, from the 'Everything Guide to Ghost Hunting'
by Melissa Martin Ellis

"Elizabeth Bissette, a writer, musician, and reluctant psychic, found herself walking through the echoes of a long-gone American family when she visited the Rosewell estate in Gloucester County, Virginia. Constructed in 1725 by Mann Page, Rosewell was the ancestral home of the Page family for more than 100 years. John Page, grandson of the builder, was the best friend, (and a cousin), of Thomas Jefferson.

"In 1916, a fire swept through the mansion, gutting it and leaving only a magnificent shell, which remained a haunting testament to eighteenth-century craftsmanship and dreams.

"Legends and lore associated with the estate were passed down from generation to generation, written in journals or whispered around fireplaces. Supposedly, Mann Page expired in the grand front hall of the mansion, and the bishop of Virginia proclaimed that God had struck him down for his excesses. Another rumor is that Mann died because he was cursed by the spirit of Powhatan for building the mansion on the site of Werewocomoco, the chief’s village.

"Tales of hauntings on the Rosewell grounds cover a broad spectrum, from full-body apparitions to moans. Vintage automobiles have even been sighted. It was into this atmosphere that Elizabeth Bissette, a distant relation of the Pages’, turned onto the long plantation road that led to the shell of the mansion.

"Parking near the family cemetery, she and a friend wandered the grounds, taking pictures. Nothing untoward happened, except that their car stalled on their way out.

“The next day,” Bissette said, “I started thinking that there was a good chance the photos wouldn’t turn out, because we hadn’t been able to get any light.” She and her friend decided to return at twilight.

“So, we got there,” she continued, “and I’m taking pictures and we’re standing around talking and I swear I saw behind [my friend] a man in colonial dress with his hair back in a ponytail. Young, smiling. He winked at me and put his finger to his lips, pointing to my friend. He looked so real, I thought he was a re-enactor, that maybe they’d had an event there that day and he was messing with me and wanted to play a joke on us. That is, until he disappeared.”

"Rather than explain the inexplicable, Bissette replied jokingly that she had just seen Thomas Jefferson and that she wished he had brought his violin."

...from The Everything Ghost Hunting Book. Visit Everything.com

Related Sites:

Everything Ghost Hunting Guide author Melissa Martin Ellis
Lonesome Liz's Ghosts and Mojo  Liz's discussion group about folklore, folk magic, myth, ghosts and more.

The Counjure Woman's Corner Liz's blog about the same, also featuring her folk-magic inspired Fine Art.

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