The Shelleys arrived in the new world as a part of the Fourth Supply lead by Baron De La Warr. As a part of his indenture he was a part of the militia and fought in the Anglo-Powhatan conflict instigated by De La Warr. It was here he was crippled in his left leg after saving the life of Captain Thomas Graves. He and Graves became friends and the captain would later employ Shelley as a plantation overseer and offer support for Shelley's family: his wife Mary and their children Thomas, James and Mary.
Smith's Hundred Edit
In 1617 Shelley's indenture came to an end and he was rewarded with 50 acres of land on the north side of the river James, in the far eastern side of the Corporation of Charles Cittie, as a part of the larger new plantation grounds of Smith's Hundred. This plantation was named after then treasurer of the Virginia Company, Sir Thomas Smith, and settled upon the site of an abandoned native village of the exterminated Paspehegh tribe. After a fight broke out between several of the other planters in Smith's Hundred, Shelley's friend Captain Graves was put in charge of the plantation. As Graves was mostly involved in militia and governing duties in Jamestown he put Shelley in charge of the plantation grounds in his stead.
In the time between 1617 and 1618 Shelley hired a puritan girl named Prudence as a servant to watch over his children and tend to his needs as he grew ever more immobile, while his wife was trusted with running the plantation's finances. In fall of 1619 Shelley's sons Thomas and James went missing alongside two plantation children. They were returned by a party of volunteers lead by militia sergeant Robert Jordan.
Behind the Scenes Edit
While Walter Shelley was an existing settler and a representative of Smith's Hundred in the first House of Burgesses alongside Captain Thomas Graves, not much else is known about him. His appearance here is fictionalized as the real Walter Shelley was never recorded to be a cripple, nor is there any evidence he was involved in the Anglo-Powhatan conflict. There are also no records I could find of his family.