Challoner Chute was a Member for Devizes in 1656 and later on for the City of Westminster.
Benjamin Chute died young.
"Catherine born May 9, 1690; m. Thomas Lennard Chute, their only child Thomas Chute (1713 - after 1774) lived at Pickenham and was unnmarried."
Source: Francis Chute, Correspondence ("Subject: Miscellanous English Chute data. Date: 4/22/2006 3:06:28 PM Eastern Daylight Time") and "Miscellaneous Addenda/Corrigenda: Family Group GP1715-0", same date. Filed under GP1715-0, Edward Chute and Catherine or Katherine Keck Chute.
WEC: Son Thomas Chute "died without issue."
Source: William Edward Chute, Chute Genealogies: A Genealogy and History of the Chute Family in America, Published 1894. Privately held.
Heraldry: Tablet on the North Wall of the Chancel. VII. (Coloured.) Chute impaling Chute. Crest: Gone, but was there, and is given by Blomefield as described under No. I. For Thomas Lennard Chute, who married Catherine, daughter of Edward Chute, and died May 12th, 1722, aged 33.
Source: Edmund Farrer, The church heraldry of Norfolk: a description of all coats of arms on brasses, monuments, slabs, hatchments, &c., now to be found in the county.. With references to Blomefield's History of Norfolk and Burke's Armory. Together with notes from the inscriptions attached. Printed A.H. Goose and co., Norwich, 1887. Pages 91-92
This marriage ended in a horrific fashion, with David Robbins being sought for the brutal murder of his wife. The engraving/sketch from the New Jersey Weekly Telegraph was described as a "very faithful portraiture", of David Robbins, and was taken from a photograph.
"My great great grandfather David Robbins. In 1875 he murdered his wife at home. Two of his young sons were there as well ... Brainard, 13 and Edwin, 11. They were witnesses in the trial. According to the court transcripts which I have, he shot his wife, Emeline Robbins, then beat her over the head with a mallet. After this he attempted to set her on fire and then he fled. He was captured a short time later.
The caption under the picture reads: 'Robbins the Wife Murderer': We present the readers of the Weekly Telegraph with a correct portrait of Robbins who so brutally murdered his wife at Bear River N.S. a few weeks since. The engraving is taken from a photograph and is a very faithful portaiture. The particulars of the tragedy have already been made public, and are fresh in the minds of all our readers. ?-----? is now confined to Digby jail and is reported as showing signs of contrition."
David Robbins was hanged to death Dec. 16 1875."
Source: Blog entry, "Peter". from Halifax, Canada, date of entry: April 10, 2006
WEC has his birthdate listed as 1701. Succeeded Anthony at the Vyne, 1754. "John Chute was made acquainted with Horace Walpole and Thomas Gray, who had completed their studies at Eaton and Cambridge, and were traveling on the Continent. Gray parted with Walpole in 1741 and took as his companion John Chute. That year Walpole, being in the House of Commons, supported John Chute's brother Francis, as a candidate for Parliament. In 1742, Walpole was introduced to John's other brother Anthony and expressed satisfaction at having seen and got acquainted with the three. He described John's temperance habits August 20, 1734 as commendable and better than his Norfolk neighbors. Gray admired John the most of anybody, and held correspondence with him for more than twenty years."
The correspondence between John Chute (1701-1776) and Horace Walpole (1717-1797) was can be found in volume 35 of the full collection of Walpole correspondence, published as a series by editor W.S. Lewis through the Yale University Press. According to Lewis, among all of Walpole's correspondents, John fell into the 'virtuosi' category: that is, the friends of Walpole who were particularly gifted.
When he met Walpole, John, in the company of his cousin Francis Whithed, was in Italy. There are a number of reasons why he was dawdling around outside of England - the first, certainly, would have been for the Italian art. John, a gifted architect and mathematician, had a singular passion for art, which Walpole, also an art collector, shared. Another reason was that it was traditional for the English sons and daughters of a "certain breeding" to educate themselves via the "Grand Tour" - a year-long, or longer, trip around the major cities of Europe, absorbing art, culture, history … and more social contacts … as they went. Thirdly, and possibly more to the point, John had quarrelled with his older brother Anthony Chute, who had inherited the Vyne after their father Edward passed away. The argument had taken place at some point after his meeting with Walpole, as the latter felt himself responsible for the rift. However, it was severe enough that John worried about being disinherited. He had no expectations of inheriting the Vyne estate at all - in the event of Anthony's death, that honor would fall to John's older brother Francis Chute, the next in line. John did worry about losing his financial support, however. It is quite possible that he stayed in Italy in the hope of steering clear of Anthony - because he was angry with him for one, and because he hoped that distance and absense would lessen the threat of disinheritance for another: "out of sight, out of mind", he may have thought.
And there was that Italian art and architecture to admire … John's letters describe itineraries that take him through Padua, Mantova, Venice, Bologna, Florence and Rome, among other places. He found little-known places off of the beaten path and found paintings that were never seen by the typical tourist. He negotiated art purchases for Walpole's well known collection of art. He studied the architecture of Palladio and others - and now you see why it was John who designed the Palladian staircase in the Vyne - and where he had been inspired. Meanwhile, he and Francis Whithed also hung out with ex-patriate British society and made comments about them to Walpole, sending the latter into fits of hysteria. Considering that Walpole is now even more well known for his witty and charming correspondence than he is for his published works, the fact that our very own John Chute could send HIM into fits of laughter is no small accomplishment.
All along, through these letters, John had kept close tabs on his family back in Hampshire - following Francis' success and failures in Parliament. Despite his anger at Anthony, he had worried about his elder brother's troubles with gout. Today we know that gout can be shared by families, and that certainly appears to have been the case with the Chutes in Hampshire. We know that Anthony suffered from it, as did John. No doubt other family members did also. Gout (for those like me who always heard the word but had no idea what it meant) is a very painful form of arthritis, caused when excess uric acid remains undissolved in the blood and coagulates in sharp, glass-like crystals within the joints - any joint would do, but gout appeared mostly in the feet or legs. Sometimes gout was accompanied by another misery caused by that same undissolved uric acid - kidney stones. (Those of you who've experienced kidney stones can attest to how painful those are. Try to imagine not being able to stand up, while at the same time suffering from a bout of kidney stones, and you have some idea of how debilitating "gout" was, at the time).
Today, gout is easily controlled - then, there was no cure, and the pain of gout was excrutiating. In one letter John wrily describes eating a piece of veal and watching it reappear in full in his ankle hours later … a rather amusing way of describing the resulting swollen ankle joints. Gout can be triggered by certain foods - obviously, John was fully aware of that. Overeating was one way to trigger a good case of it and John freely admitted that both he and his brother Anthony were "fat", although he also admitted that Anthony was more "comely", or handsome, despite being fat.
You can imagine John's shock and dismay, while in Italy, when he learned that his older brother Francis had died very suddenly at a very young age of 49. He was suddenly second in line to inherit the Vyne, Anthony was eyeing him crossly from afar, and John was worried anew that Anthony would disinherit him. He wasn't alone - as Anthony was childless, John's nephews from the Tracy family were also eyeballing the estate, thinking it would pass to them when Anthony died.
Much is made of John's friendships with Walpole, Grey and Mann, but one of John's closest friendships would have been with his own cousin, Francis Thistlethwayte Whithed, or Whitehed. They traveled Europe together and were so close that Walpole often referred to the two of them as The Chutested. It may have been that they returned from abroad when the never ending "Grand Tour" became too much for Francis - the two returned to England in 1746, settled in London, where Whithed died 30 March 1751. John's grief at losing his cousin was almost more intense than his grief at the death of his brother Francis. Judging by the correspondence, Francis Whithed seemed to have had a fondness for stage actresses, and was often teased about it.
In 1754, Walpole received a surprising letter from John, and while John's letter has unfortunately gone missing, Walpole's response to it has not, and you can infer from Walpole's reaction the details of John's letter:
Arlington Street, May 21, 1754
My dearest Sir,
DON'T be surprised if I write you a great deal of incoherent nonsense! The triumph of my joy is so great that I cannot think with any consistence! unless you could know how absolutely persuaded I was that your brother would disinherit you, nay, though the best I almost hoped, was, that he would outlive you (forgive me) you cannot judge of my surprise and satisfaction - I am sure the frame-maker could not when Francesco brought me your letter, and told me in Italian the good news, I started up and embraced him - and put myself into such an agitation, that I believe I shall not get it off without being bloodied. I have hurried to Mrs. Chute to embrace her too, but was not so lucky to find her. I am overjoyed that you will not come away, without leaving her there. I would not trust a cranny of the house, into which a will might be thrust, in any other hands - well it was so unexpected! on not hearing from you, I concluded all went ill, and that you would not tell me of some new brutality - how kind you was to conceal his illness, I should have lived in agonies of apprehensions for the consequence - you are in the right to believe I should be overjoyed.
I can scarce contain from divulging my joy till I hear farther ... I must tell you, that great part of my own [joy] is, that this event will prolong your life at least twenty years; your brother was a perpetual gouty thorn in your sides .... I don't know that I shall, but if I should grow to love you less, you will not be surprised - you know the partiality I have to the afflicted, the disgraced, and the oppressed, and must recollect how many titles to my esteem you will lose, when you are rich Chute of the Vine, when you are courted by chancellors of the Exchequer, for your interest in Hampshire; by a thousand nephew Tracys for your estate, and by my Lady Brown - for her daughter. Oh, you will grow to wear a slit gouty shoe, and a goldheaded cane with a spying glass; you will talk stocks and actions with Sir R. Brown, and be obliged - to go to the South Sea House, when one wants you to whisk in a comfortable way to Strawberry. You will dine at Farley in a swagging coach with fat mares of your own, and have strong port of a thousand years old got on purpose for you at Hackwood, because you will have lent the Duke thirty thousand pounds - oh! you will be insupportable, shan't you? I find I shall detest you! - en attendant, I do wish you joy!Yours ever
Yes, in a plot twist right out of a Charles Dickens novel, (where's Merchant-Ivory when you need them?) Anthony had just died, intestate, and John - to the shock of everyone, including himself - had not only NOT been disinherited and disgraced, he'd just inherited the Vyne. Walpole was so happy to hear this news, he'd not only hugged John's Italian servant Francesco Martelli who had hand-delivered John's letter, but he'd even hugged the (no doubt shocked) workman who was making either window or picture frames in his home - adding the amusing (and hopefully exaggerated) anecdote about being permanently nailed to the frame itself as a result. It seems that John's older brother Francis and his wife had not gotten along with Anthony, either -- Francis's widow being the "Mrs. Chute" mentioned in Walpole's letter -- as John appears to have left her in the Vyne after Anthony's death, (rather than returning her to her lodgings in Somerset House in the Strand) to protect his interests there.
That John had known of Anthony's illness made it somewhat surprising that Anthony did die without a will - a man of Anthony's wealth and position certainly would have known the importance of making one; one would have thought that he would have made a will before being possibly too ill to do so. Without knowing anything of Anthony's state of mind at the time, it may have been that he couldn't quite bring himself to bequeath the Vyne to his youngest brother with whom he was so angry ... but couldn't quite bring himself to leave him destitute, either. Dying intestate solved both problems - John would inherit, without Anthony needing to orchestrate the act of kindness.
Walpole summed up his long close friendship with Sir John Chute in one of the most heartfelt letters of all, written to Horace Mann after John died in 1776:
"Mr. Chute and I agreed invariably in our principles, he was my counsel in my affairs, was my oracle in taste, the standard to whom I submitted my trifles, and the genius that presided over poor Strawberry! His sense decided me in everything, his wit and quickness illuminated everything - I saw him oftener than any man; to him in every difficulty I had recourse, and him I loved to have here, as our friendship was so entire, and we knew one another so entirely, that he alone never was the least constraint to me. We passed many hours together without saying a syllable to each other, for we were both above ceremony. I left him without excusing myself, read or wrote before him, as if he were not present."
This was the same Walpole who complained repeatedly how much he hated having to entertain people in even the most informal of circumstances, so this compliment was extraordinary.
We've all had friends with whom we've shared "you had to be there" moments - things that strike the two of you as the funniest moments you've ever experienced, which make no sense to anyone else. John and Walpole has the same sort of friendship - as their own way of making light of society (BEFORE they both found themselves at the heads of it, it should be pointed out) - they'd invented cyphers (a numerical code), by which they made fun of other titled folks without mentioning names, and created a small but very important noble pedigree for their respective pets: Patapan the dog, actually John's but under the care of Walpole, and Sir Geofrey the Cat, living with John. The resulting negotiations (on behalf of the pets) between the two of them could be considered either remarkably inventive and very funny … or an interesting reflection of their own views of the nature of British society. Very funny poetry in honor of Patapan was written and passed between them, and "Patapan the Small White Dog" was memoralized in a published work by Walpole. And it is doubtful that either of them expected any of these letters to reach and be analyzed by thousands of their near and distant relatives, 250 years later, or John would have added, "For God sake, burn my letter" to all of them, as he did do, on one. Luckily, Walpole ignored the command. If you ever have the chance to read the "John Chute" section of Walpole's published correspondence, do so - his personality shines through his letters, and he seems to have been a very bright, enormously funny, and often opinionated Chute.©Jacqueline Chute, 2002. All rights reserved
"Walpole and a party of friends (Dick Edgecumbe, George Selwyn, and Williams), in 1756, composed a piece of heraldic satire -- a coat of arms for the two gaming clubs at White's -- which was "actually engraven from a very pretty painting of Edgecumbe, whom Mr. Chute, as Strawberry King at Arms," appointed their chief herald-painter. The blazon is vert (for a card-table); three parolis proper on a chevron sable (for a Hazard table); two rouleaux in saltire between two dice proper, on a canton sable; a white ball (for election) argent. The supporters are an old and young knave of clubs; the crest, an arm out of an earl's coronet shaking a dice-box; and the motto, Cogit amor nummi--"The love of money compels." Round the arms is a claret-bottle ticket by way of order."
John Chute has been added to more "Gays in History" lists than I can count - although, really, as each successive list is based on the previous one, you can really only say he appeared on one.
When I first saw his name on a "Gays in History" list, I was actually pleased, thinking the compiler had found information on John Chute of the Vyne that Chute historians hadn't found yet -- but this was not the case. In fact, the commentary was that John's inclusion on this list was unconfirmed and based on speculation. Unfortunately, none of the successive list-makers copied that small disclaimer, and he continues to be included on "Gays in History" lists without any supporting evidence beyond someone's recorded original "speculation." In fact, that appeared to be true of a lot individuals on that particular list. The original list that I saw was compiled by Paul Halsall of Fordham University and is still available today at http://users.cybercity.dk/~dko12530/queerhis.htm. Halsell generously adds the offer that "This list may be copied and distributed freely", and unfortunately, he was taken quite literally, for the list was re-copied and reproduced repeatedly ... without the disclaimers. Halsall's disclaimer reads:
"This is a list of "Queers" in history. The qualifications for inclusion on this list are a: that the person be dead (i.e., presumeably not likely to come back and sue him for libel), and b: that the person be reputed to be "queer" and be of interest to modern lesbian, gays, bisexual, transgendered and queer people. There is, of course, no certainty that these people were queer, but they have all been claimed at various times to have been so."
Halsall lists a few sources at the conclusion of his list, but he does not tell you which names are attributable to which sources, leaving researchers with no choice but to wade through prior "List of Lists" or "Histories of Homosexuality Since Plato" anthologies in search of one of his unsubstantiated list entries. None of the entries in his list of original source material, obviously, includes John Chute, Horace Walpole, Thomas Grey or anyone else in their circle of friends. So apparently this "reputing" did not take place within their circle of acquaintances - no one knows who first "speculated" about John Chute - or why. Someone who got kicked out of the Vyne when he inherited it and held a serious grudge? Someone who actually knew him, liked him and was trusted by him? Someone who just enjoyed malicious gossiping? Or does Halsall really believe that just because "someone says something about someone", it must be true?
The issue that directly concerned me, was: why on earth did Halsall set himself over every historian on the planet and declare himself exempt from the rules of "citing your sources" that any historian who expects to be taken seriously manages to live by? If you're going to compile lists that people are going to use for - whatever reason - at least make the minimal effort to give them a verification trail as well. If you're not going to even make that small effort, why are you urging everyone else to lazily copy your historiographic ineptitude and "pass it around"? And why would he think that gay men or women would appreciate being handed unsubstantiated lists of people that some unnamed "someone", somewhere, at some point in time merely "guessed" they could admire?
And that doesn't even answer the question: why did everyone else blindly copy it without even questioning it?
As for John's orientation, Francis Chute addressed the issue in Chutes of the Vyne, and I think he summarized my own suspicions quite well: that if John had a "mask" he was wearing, it was not a mask designed to cover "gayness" at all; it was a mask designed to cover a lifelong sense of isolation and abandonment, and even fear. Having a passion for art and architecture does not equate to being "gay", even in our own time. Writing letters in the flowery prose of the time does not equate to "gayness", either. Neither does having close male friends, or never marrying - particularly if you are not in possession of the wealth that everyone seemed to think you had, and didn't even unexpectedly come into property until you were already 53 years, set in your ways, a self-acknowledged grumpy old man beset with painful, debilatating gout and other serious health problems. John preferred silence; he preferred stillness; he lived being alone. Had the original "list-maker" taken any of that into account, he might have had better insight into why men in John's position did not always marry. Horace Walpole in fact wrote several suggestions about prospective "wives" that were going to be offered to John when he inherited the Vyne in Hampshire - hardly the sort of suggestion that one of your closest friends would write to you, if he knew you weren't at all interested in wives in the first place. If anything, there is more actual documented evidence that he wasn't. So how did John Chute end up on these 'Gays in History" lists?
Francis is a lot kinder about it; I'm not so nice and a lot crankier, and that crankiness stems not from homophobia, but from "histori-mania". If you're going to publish lists of facts about people, including, but limited to, their sexual orientation, you had best have documented evidence more substantial than speculation or wishful thinking to back you up, especially if you're going to tack the name of a respected institution such as Fordham University after your name. You had also better have the education and the intelligence to take the cultural mannerisms of the time period into account. John's closest friend - far closer to him than even Horace Walpole - was his cousin Francis Whithed. Francis had his own sense of inadequacy to deal with: he was partially deaf and painfully shy - and fell head over heels in love with every actress he came across. He had an illigimate daughter that John supported after his death. My sense of their relationship was that they absolutely loved each other - but were not "in love with" each other, and there is a big difference. They understood each other. They did not need to "impress" each other. They supported each other. They were best friends, as well as cousins, and they were inseparable. There are plenty of men who have those sorts of relationships with each other and aren't even remotely gay. In fact, there are far too many other reasons to explain John's preferences, his choices, his behavior, that have nothing whatsoever to do with being "gay" - or, quite honestly, to even thinking along those lines. And those reasons ARE substantiated.
Died without issue.
Ann Chute was born in 1700 and died before marrying. According to parish records, she was said to have been born in May 7th of 1701 and christened on May 18th of the same month. However, her younger brother John was born in December of that same year. While it is possible (although unlikely) that he was born two months prematurely, it is more probable that the parish records were not transcribed accurately, and that Ann was born in May of 1700, rather than 1701. In any event, she died without issue.
"Born in Clements, east side of Moose River, March 22, 1835; married Rebecca, born Sept. 6, 1842; daughter of David and Sally (Wear) Minard, Dec. 19, 1865; and lived near Clementsvale, a farmer and lumberman; he was killed by the falling of a tree Feb. 9, 1881; after that the widow and family lived a few years in New Hampshire, but latterly for a few years in Boston."Source: A Genealogy and History of the Chute Family in America: With Some Account of the Family in Great Britain and Ireland, with an Account of Forty Allied Families Gathered from the Most Authentic Sources, William Edward Chute. Salem, Massachusetts, 1894. Pages 155-156.
"Born in Clements, May 26, 1838; married Helen, daughter of John Graham of Picton. N.S., in Beverley, Mass., Nov. 26, 1860; lived a few years in Clements, N.S., and about 1865, went to Carleton Co., N. B., and settled in Argyle; being pious and zealous in the Baptist Church they made him deacon in 1880."
Source: Chute, William Edward. A Genealogy and History of the Chute Family in America: With Some Account of the Family in Great Britain and Ireland, with an Account of Forty Allied Families Gathered from the Most Authentic Sources. Salem, Massachusetts, 1894. Page 156.
Family records list her as "Helen Graham", the official birth record of daughter Ellen Adelia Chute found in the New Brunswick Provincial Archives identify her her as "Ellen Graham". See notes and sources on Ellen Adelia Chute for full record.