This page refers only to my immediate ancestors, not other Dibbles or Dibblees.
The are people who sneer at history which is just Kings and Wars. They prefer the history of ordinary people. But wars can affect ordinary people.
The English Civil War was a series of armed conflicts and political machinations between Parliamentarians (Roundheads) and Royalists (Cavaliers). What concerns us (mostly) is the lead-up to the war. King Charles I believed in the Divine Right of Kings, that is, that the King had supreme power. Parliament was nothing like the modern House of Commons, but they were necessary for the king to raise taxes. The King and Parliament were in dispute, so the king dissolved Parliament and ruled without it. There was also the problem of religion. By now England was a Protestant country, but with a wide variety of how to worship. King Charles had a Roman Catholic wife. This was very unpopular.
These tensions led many Puritans to seek a new life in New England, starting at Plymouth in 1620, but by 1634, Puritans were starting to move into the Boston area in larger numbers, including the move of Robert and Thomas Dible from the West Country in England to Dorcester, Massachusetts. See Settlement of Massachusetts Bay for more details.
Nothing is known of Robert Dible (or Deeble) after 1642, so there is a possibility that he returned to England to fight in the English Civil War. Many Puritans in New England did. But unfortunately there is no evidence he did!
King Philip's War is also known as the First Indian War or Metacom's War. It was between the native Americans of New England and the English settlers. Ebenezer Dibble the older fought in this war, and died in the Great Swamp Fight. His wife and young children were left destitute. See Ebenezer Dibble's military career for more details.
The American War of Independence is also known as the American Revolutionary War. The American colonists gained their independence from Britain. Not all American supported the new nation, however. Some remained loyal to Britain and King George III. They were called Loyalists. They included Rev. Ebenezer Dibblee and his son Rev. Frederick Dibblee. Ebenezer stayed in the United States of America for the rest of his life, but Frederick went north to New Brunswick, Canada. Click here for more on the Dibblees and the American War of Independence.
The Indian Mutiny is also known as the Indian Rebellion of 1857. At the time, British India was controlled by the East India Company. The Indian Mutiny was overcome, but it led to the dissolution of the East India Company in 1858. India was thereafter directly governed by the crown as the new British Raj. This reorganisation of the administration and the military required better transport. So the railway system of India started to be developed seriously. Frederick Dibblee (senior) was born in Canada, and trained there as a railway engineer. After some work abroad, Frederick was offered a job in India. He worked there the rest of his life, eventuall dying of fever there. His wife and children were living in England, and decided to stay there. They never went back to Canada.
The First World War was, of course, a massive conflict involving many nations. Frederick Dibblee (junior) was in the Royal Marine Artillery. He was in the HMS Marlborough during the Battle of Jutland. There is a family story that the leave after this battle was responsible for the birth of John Dibblee 9 months later!
John Dibblee was in the Royal Artillery. He was involved in the retreat from Dunkirk. He was captured by the Germans at Dieppe, and held as prisoner of war until 1945, when he was liberated by the Americans. When he returned to London, he was found to have TB. He met a V.A.D. nurse in Sherborne Hospital called Celia Packe. They married in 1946, and they are my parents!
Obviously the course of all our lives are affected by what happened in the past. We are not always aware of this. I must admit, it does feel strange to me that my very existence depends on no less than six different wars!
© Jo Edkins 2012 - Return to Early Dibblee History index