Robert Ogle, 1st Lord Ogle

Robert, first Lord Ogle of Ogle and Redesdale, (1406-1469) knight, was born in 1406.

Robert Ogle‘s parents were Sir Knight Robert Ogle (1389-1435) and Maud Grey (1382-1451).

Robert Ogle married Isabel Kirkby (abt.1410-1477), daughter and heir of Sir Alexander Kirkby, the eldest son of Sir Richard Kirkby of Kirkby, Lancashire.  The Kirkby family roots are ancient and Knightly.

Much is known about the actions of this fifteen century lord Robert Ogle:

Robert Ogle occurs in the annals of history in 1434, when he and his father were appointed commissioners to prevent violations of the truce with Scotland and appears to have been, with William Bertram, a knight of the shire in 13 Henry VI.

Also in 1434,  he was, as Sir Robert Ogle the younger, captain of Berwick, and, after laying waste the country, was attacked by the Scotch under the earl of Angus at Piperdon and completely defeated, he being taken prisoner and Sir John Ogle and others killed.

His name occurs as member of Parliament from this year to the year 1441.

In 1436. after his father’s death, he had livery of his lands in Ogle, Hepple, etc., and on the 24th August of the same year was appointed constable of Norham castle, seneschal, sheriff and escheator in Norhamshire and Islandshire for 20 years.

Robert Ogle was high sheriff of the county in 1437 and in that year was commissioned to give safe conducts on the East Marches of which he was, in conjunction with Sir Ralph Grey, appointed a warden in April 1438, and again on February 5, 1439.  He was appointed to carry out the array of Northumberland for the defence of the Border in the same manner as the late Sir Henry Percy had done.

Robert Ogle, with Humphrey, duke of Gloucester, John, duke of Norfolk, Henry, earl of Northumberland, Sir John Bertram and others, was a conservator of the truce concluded with the Scotch the last day of March 1438, to hold from sun rising the 1st of May next to sun setting the 1st of May, 1447.

One matter in dispute in 1438, was the question of a compensation due to Robert Ogle on account of his having been seized and held to ransom (for 750 marks) by the Scots in time of truce between 1426 and 1435.  It was agreed that he should be indemnified with a Scottish ship which had been seized at Newcastle, but this was found to have been sold by the admiral or his lieutenant and Sir Robert was involved in a dispute with the latter which was not ended until 1442.  The wardens must then have dwelt at Roxburgh castle, for as such they are mentioned as being there on November 26, 1438.   He was also one of those, whom with Sir John Bertram, his uncle, were appointed to settle the bounds between the two kingdoms between Berwick and Roxburgh castle.

In 1439, Thomas Lyle, esq., gave Sir Robert Ogle and John Swinburne, probably in trust, the manor and ville of Felton, the witnesses of which were his uncle, John Bertram, and his brother, John Ogle, esq.  This probably concerned the settlements of his sister, who married Thomas Lisle on the 1st of February.

On the 2nd of November of 1439 as cousin of our lord bishop (Robert Nevill), he was appointed constable of Norham castle, seneschal, sheriff and escheator for life, which was confirmed the next year.

In 1444, Ralph, Lord Greystock, made two indented grants in trust to Sir Robert Ogle and others.   His name occurs at Bamburgh 25 Henry VI.   He occurs as writing to the prior to inform him that John Gisseburn, the vicar appointed in 1447, should either reside on his benefice or provide a curate, that otherwise the parishioners would pay no more tithes, the vicar being some time afterwards admonished.  

In 1448, the English made an unsuccessful inroad into Scotland.

In 1449, his two sons, Sir Robert and Thomas Ogle, were outlawed for raiding.  The same year, on a truce made with the Scots to hold during pleasure by Robert, bishop of Durham, Sir John Beauchamp, constable of England, and others, he was one of the conservators as well as when the truce was extended to August 15, 1454.

Being at Fowberry on September 16, 1449, as Robert,  Lord Ogle,  senior,  knight,  he granted to Robert Fowberry all his lands in Fowberry for life.

In 1450, he and William Bertram, esq.,  attested a charter whereby the earl of Northumberland bestowed the advowson of Leconfield on Ainwick abbey, and in August Robert Ogle gave his brother William the reversion of Longwitton held by Matilda his mother for life.

In 1452, the earl of Douglas committed excesses on the border with a design of involving the king in war, which was averted by the forbearance of the English government who sent letters to Lord Poynings, Sir Robert Ogle, the bailiff and lieutenant of Tynedale, John Heron of Ford, and Ralph Grey, that they were under no circumstances to make reprisals.

Tynedale has also been called a lordship. He was also a commissioner to collect loans and contributions, and also, on the 9th of January and 5th of February, 1453, with others, was appointed by Robert Nevill to enquire into divers concealments and nuisances, etc., in Norhamshire and Islandshire, and mentioned as receiving (?) the tithes of Horncliffe, and, in 1454, as a tenant of lands in Ancroft under the monastery.

The year 1454 saw the opening of the Wars of the Roses and the first battle of St. Alban’s.   Six hundred men were brought from the Marches, probably under the earl of Warwick, warden of the West Marches, who is stated to have caused the movement by which the Yorkists broke into the town.   The credit of which by another account is given to Sir Robert Ogle. He was also one of the commissioners appointed by the victorious party to raise money for the defence of Calais.   On the 12th of September he gave to John, his brother, the manor of North Middleton, near Angerton for his life, William Bertram, his cousin, being a witness.   In 35 Henry VI. [1457] Robert Ogle was, as he had also been for four years previously, constituted ambassador to treat with Scotland for a truce, and soon after he, William Bertram, and others, were appointed commissioners to raise archers in the county.

During the war of the Roses, at the battle of St. Albans on May 22, 1455, an extract from the book “The War of the Roses” by John Gillingham:

“For an hour the royalist defense held firm and the attack faltered. At this critical moment the earl of Warwick showed why it was he was to become known as the king maker. Seeing that the barricades could not be take by storm, he decided to go around them…

The ploy worked, Sir Robert Ogle, in command of 600 men from the Scottish marches, took the house between two inns, the sign of the cross keys, and the chequers, and broke into the market place. The blare of trumpets and the ringing war cry of A Warwick! A Warwick! announced the success of this flanking manoeuvre. The royalist in the center sounded the alarm and flew to arms, but again they were too late. The decisive breach had been made.”

“At first the king’s household put up a brave resistance, but they were in no condition to withstand the hail of arrows now descending upon them.”…   “After half an hour or so they broke and scattered.”…

“The King of England, wounded in the neck, sheltered in a tanner’s cottage, while his standard lay abandoned in the street.” …

“As soon as it was clear that the field of battle was his, York ordered the kings removal to more dignified quarters in the abbey.”…

“Less than a hundred men had been killed, mostly Lancastrians… but the deaths of Somerset, Northumberland, and Clifford suggest that York and the Nevilles had intended … to kill their enemies.”… “The problem for the Yorkists was, they still claimed to be loyal to the king… but could not free themselves from their enemies without killing them.”

On February 27, 1459, Sir Ralph Grey and Sir Robert Ogle are spoken of as late wardens of Roxburgh, so their office must have terminated after twenty years service, but Sir Robert Ogle was still escheator of Norham that yea.   In October, he and his son, Sir Robert Ogle, knight, Sir John Middleton of Belsay, knight, the prior of Hexham, and others, were appointed ambassadors to treat with ambassadors of Scotland for a truce.   He was also a conservator of the truce with the dukes of Buckingham Norfolk, and others.

In 38 Henry VI. [1460] Robert Ogle gave his son, Sir Robert Ogle, knight, and Joan, his wife, an annual rent issuing from a messuage in Newcastle-on-Tyne.   In this year James, king of Scotland was killed in his attempt to take Roxburgh, which, however, was subsequently taken.

On the 10th of July, 1460, at the battle of Northampton, Henry VI fell into the hands of the Yorkists.   On the 30th of December, Richard, duke of York, was killed at the battle of Wakefield; Edward his son, then duke of York, cut his way through the Lancastrians at Mortimer’s Cross and was proclaimed king on March 4, 1461.  The victory at Towton on the 29th following, where the earl of Northumberland and Sir John Nevill were killed, secured his throne.

Sir Robert Ogle probably took part in these battles, and Hodgson says that he was on the 16th of March of this year constituted warden general of the East Marches with large powers.  After Towton, however, Robert Ogle, with Sir John Conyers, were reported to be besieging Henry VI in a place in Yorkshire called Coroumbr.   He had a commission to take into his hands the castle of Harbottle and the lordship of Redesdale and the castle of Ford, and further had a grant for life in these estates.  He had a commission, with John Nevill of Montague and William Ogle, to array the king’s forces for Northumberland and he had another for the forces in Westmoreland.

He was summoned the 26th of July, by Edward IV as baron Ogle of Ogle to his first parliament to meet on the 4th of November following.

On the 8th of August Robert Ogle had a grant for life in the offices of seneschal and constable of the lordships and castles of Ainwick, Warkworth, Prudhoe, Rothbury, Newburn, Newburn Haven, formerly belonging to the earl of Northumberland and on the 5th of November, was appointed ambassador’s plenipotentiary of England to treat with deputies of the crown of Scotland for a cession of hostilities between the two realms.

As Lord Ogle he was appointed, the 2nd of March, 1461 (?) a justice of the peace, etc. On the 28th of January, 1462, the king granted to him and his heirs male in special tail the lordship of Redesdale and the castle and borough of Harbottle, with all royal franchises forfeited by Sir William Tailboys, including the ville of Ellington which had belonged to Lord Welles who was killed at Towton; a rent of £8 a year out of Beneley, and the towns of Shilbottle, Rennington, Gysens, Middleton and the lands called Talbottes lands in Tyne dale, all late belonging to the earl of Northumberland.

After Towton, Henry VI and his queen fled to Berwick, which they surrendered to the Scotch and April 1462, Queen Margaret went to France.   In that year Alnwick, it appears, was still in the hands of the Lancastrians, and it was taken by Lord Hastings and Sir Ralph Grey, but Robert, Lord Ogle and others are reported to have taken possession of it on the 30th of July.   After it was evacuated Queen Margaret with her General do Brezé landed near Bamburgh on the 25th of October, and the three castles of Alnwick, Bamburgh and Dunstanburgh either then fell into her hands or were already in possession of the Lancastrians. Hearing of the earl of Warwick’s advance, Margaret with de Breze escaped on the arrival of the French fleet which was afterwards wrecked on Holy Island on its attempt to get to Berwick, where Lord Ogle captured many Frenchmen with their leaders.   On the 10th of December, Alnwick, Dunstanburgh, and Bamburgh were invested under the earl of Warwick whose headquarters were at Warkworth. Lords Montague and Ogle were before Bamburgh which capitulated on the 24th of December and Dunstanburgh three days afterwards. It is probable that Lord Ogle and a part of his force assisted before Dunstanburgh after Bamburgh had fallen.

On January 6, 1463, Brezé with the assistance of the Scotch under the earl of Angus was enabled to bring off the greater part of the garrison of Ainwick which finally capitulated on the 30th of January. However, by treachery and by others, these three castles again fell into the hands of the Lancastrians, and in the early summer, Henry VI., Margaret and Brezé were in Bamburgh castle with 2,000 men, and Henry, with the king of Scots, afterwards laid siege to Norham, from which they were driven by the earl of Warwick and Lord Montague.

On the 30th of July, Margaret, her son, and Breze sailed for Flanders. In the meantime Henry VI reigned over Bamburghshire and Ainwick.

In March, 1464, Lord Robert Ogle was a commissioner for treating with Scotland for terms of peace and he was subsequently on other commissions.   On the 25th of April, Lord Montague (or Montacute) defeated the Lancastrians at Hedgely moor and on the 8th of May, they were again defeated by Lord Montague at Hexham. The 13th of June following, the earl of Warwick forced the surrender of Alnwick, and on the 2nd of that month, he with his brother Montague, then earl of Northumberland, took Bamburgh. Lord Robert Ogle was made constable of that castle and receivers of the revenues of its lordships by a patent of Edward IV in his 4th year.

In 1465, Lord Ogle had another grant of Redesdale and Harbottle which no doubt altered the grant in tail male of 1462.   On the 20th of June, the king at Westminster commissioned John Nevill, earl of Northumberland, Lord Ogle and others to treat with James, king of Scotland about his marrying with some person of the king of England’s allegiance.   Robert Ogle and Ewyn Ogle, his son and heir, granted to John do Murray, chaplain, a messuage in Great Tossan; this deed is dated at our castle of Bothal on the 20th day of October, 5 Edward IV[1466] so it appears they were wardens of this castle after the death of Sir William Bertram the same year, the heir being a minor.

The 20th of November following, Lord Ogle was commissioned with George, archbishop of York, Richard Nevill, earl of Warwick, and John Nevill, earl of Northumberland, the two latter being his cousins, to treat with Colin, earl of Argyle, at Newcastle, the 4th of December next, for the redressing of injuries which had been done contrary to the truce.  On the 12th, a truce was concluded which was to hold until the last day of October  1479.

On October 10, 1466, Robert Ogle with his two cousins above and others were commissioned to settle all affairs regarding the truce.  The same year he was mentioned as Sir Robert Ogle, knight, lord of Ogle and Redesdale and superintendent of the borough of Holy Island, and on April 20, 1467, as Robert, lord of Ogle and Redesdale, a Ewyn, his son and heir, by an indenture at Bothal, and sealed with a bulls head crest, granted a tenement in Morpeth to Thomas Spore.  On the 20th of May, granted Ewyn Ogle, his son and heir, and Eleanor Hilton, Ewyn’s wife, the manor of North Middleton.

In 1468, Robert Ogle’s name occurs as seneschal of the bishop’s borough of Holy Island.

Robert Ogle died on November 1, 1469.  His inquisitions were taken at Carlisle on the 5th and at Newbiggin on February 8 , 1470. He held Thursby in Cumberland, and in Northumberland, manors and tenements in Hepple, Ogle, Twisell, Shilvington, half of Thirnam, Fowberry, one third of Ingram and Horsley, Bamburgh, Newhall, Clifton, East Hartington, Morpeth, the lordship of Redesdale, and the castle and borough of Harbottle. Dugdale says he was summoned to parliament the 1st, 2nd, 6th, and 9th years of Edward IV’s reign [1470].

Robert and Isabel’s children were:

Child Born Married Departed
Owen Ogle 1440 in Ogle, Northumberland, England Eleanor Hilton 26 May 1467 1 Sep 1486 Stokes, England
Isabel Ogle Sir John Heron; John Rindringdon

Robert Ogle & Maud Grey Pedigree including Robert Ogle & Isabel Kirkby

Robert Ogle died November 1, 1469.  Isabel Kirkby Ogle’s will dated at Chipchase on January 2, 1477 states that she desired to be buried in the monastery of St. Andrew, Hexham.  Isabel had property in Lancashire which came to her on the death of grandfather Sir Richard Kirkby who had survived his son.  Isabel Ogle’s will was proved at Gateshead on February 5, 1477.

From the Dictionary of National Biography,

Robert Ogle and Ellen (Helen) Bertram, only child and heiress of Sir Robert Bertram of Bothal, three miles east of Morpeth, in 1343 obtained a license to build the castle there. A splendid gatehouse, adorned with contemporary shields of arms, still remains (Archceologia A£liana, xiv. 283 seq.)

CHECK ALL THIS Their son Robert Ogle (1351-1409) who married XXX Heton , and who succeeded his grandfather, was under age, and John Philipot [q. v.] became his guardian (dugdale, ii. 262; but cf. Cal. Inquis,post mortem,ii.288,319).  Bothal Castle came to him on the death of his mother’s third husband, David Holgrave, in 1405 or 1400, and he immediately settled it upon his younger son, John, who had taken his grandmother’s surname of Bertram. But the day after Ogle’s death on 31 Oct. 1409, his elder son, Sir Robert, laid siege to it, and drove out his brother (Sot. Pari. iii. 629; Hodgson, History of Northumberland, II. ii. 170). Bertram brought the matter before parliament, and the castle remained in his family until it became extinct in the direct male line. This was before 1517, when the fourth Lord Ogle styled himself ‘lord of Ogle and Bottell.’ Robert, first lord Ogle [q.v.J, however, seems to have been at least temporarily in possession in October 1465.

[Rotuli Parliamentorum; Calendiirium Inquisitionum post mortem, ed. Record Commission; Rymer’s Fcedera, original edition; Walsingham’s Historia Anglicana in the Rolls Ser.; Wyntoun’s Chronicle in the Historians of Scotland; Dugdale’s Baronage; Nicolas’s Historic Peerage, ed. Courthope; Hogdson’s Northumberland; Arctueologia /Eliana; Hexham Priory (Surtees Soc.); Culendariutn Rotulorum Patentium, p. 229, and Calendarium Rotulorum Originalium, p. 801.] J. T-t.

representatives, may have been the son (Fmdera, x. 695). One matter still in dispute in 1438 was the question of the compensation due to Ogle on account of his having been seized and held to ransom by the Scots in time of truce between 1426 and 1435 (Hot. Pari. v. 44; Ordinances of the Privy Council, v. 93,162,167). It was agreed that Ogle should be indemnified with a Scottish ship which had been seized at Newcastle; but this was found to have been sold by the admiral or his lieutenant, and Ogle was involved in a dispute with the latter, which was not ended until 1442.

In 1438 Ogle was sheriff of Northumberland, and in charge of the east march of Scotland until a warden was appointed (ib. v. 100; Dugdale, ii. 262). Little is then heard of him until 1452, when he was bailiff and lieutenant of Tyndale (Ord. Privy Council, v. 126). Three years later Ogle sided with the Yorkists when they took up arms, and brought six hundred men from the marches to the first battle of St. Albans. He probably came in the train of the Earl of Warwick, who was warden of the west march; and one account of the battle gives to Ogle the credit of the movement by which the Yorkists broke into the town, but this feat is ascribed in other versions to Warwick (Paxton Letters, i. 332). Ogle was one of the commissioners appointed by the victorious party to raise money for the defence of Calais (Ord. Privy Council, v. 244). Shortly after Towton he and Sir John Conyers were reported to be besieging Henry VI in a place in Yorkshire’ called Coroumbr; such aname it hath, or much like ‘ (Paston Letters, ii. 7). His services to the Yorkist cause did not go unrewarded. Edward IV on 26 July 1461 summoned him to his first parliament as Baron Ogle, and invested him (8 Aug.) with the wardenship of the east marches, lately held by his great Lancastrian neighbour, the Earl of Northumberland, who was killed at Towton. With the wardenship went the offices of steward and constable of the forfeited Percy castles and many of the earl’s lordships (dugdale).

In November he was entrusted with the negotiations for a truce with Scotland, and in the January following received a further grant of the lordship of Redesdale and castle of Harbottle in mid-Northumberland, forfeited by Sir William Tailboys of Kyme in Lincolnshire, afterwards called Earl of Kyme, who was executed after the battle of Hexham in 1464 (dugdale, i. 263; Wabkworth, p. 7; Rot. Pari. v. 477). To these were added other forfeited lands in Northumberland. In October 1462 Ogle distinguished himself in the dash upon Holy Island, which resulted in the capture of all the French leaders who had come over with Margaret of Anjou, except De Breze’ (Historians of Hexham, Surtees Soc. I. cix.) During the operations against the Northumbrian strongholds in the winter Ogle assisted John Neville, lord Montagu [q. v.], in the siege of Bamborough, which surrendered on Christmas-eve (Three Fifteenth-Century Chronicles,^. 157-59; WorCester, ii. 780; Paston Letters, ii. 121). It was betrayed to the Lancastrians again in the following year, but finally reduced in June 1464, and entrusted to Ogle as constable for life. Just a year later he was commissioned with Montagu, now earl of Northumberland, and others, to negotiate for peace with Scotland, and for a marriage between James III and an English subject (Fwdera, xi. 546).

Ogle died on 1 Nov. 1469. He married Isabel, daughter and heiress of Sir Alexander Kirkby of Kirk by Ireleth in Furness, by whom he had a son Owen, who is separately noticed, and a daughter Isabella, married first to Sir John Heron of Chipchase, and afterwards to Sir John Wedrington (dugdale, Baronage; Arehaologia JKhana, xiv. 287; Hexham Priory, Surtees Soc. p. lxix).

[Rotuli Parliamentorum; Calendar him Inquisitionum post mortem; Rymer’s Fcedera, original ed.; Proceedings and Ordinances of the Privy Council, ed. Nicolas; William of Worcester in Stevenson’s Wars in France, vol. ii., Bolls Ser.; Three Fifteenth-Century Chronicles and Warkworth’s Chronicle, published by the Camden Society; Dugdale’s Baronage; Archaeologia Jiliana; other authorities in the text.]


Dictionary of national biography, Volume 42 edited by Sir Leslie Stephen

The English Ogles

A genealogical history of the dormant, abeyant, forfeited, and extinct …
By Sir Bernard Burke

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