Lady Anne Halkett

A remarkable woman for her time – Royalist, author, daughter, lover, nurse, prisoner, wife and teacher. Elizabeth Murray was a Royalist and a member of the Sealed Knot, a secret organisation committed to restoring the Stuart monarchy. She took messages to Charles II while he was in exile in France. She protected her family by maintaining relations with the opposition, including Oliver Cromwell who visited her home regularly during the 1650s.

The name Murray rang a bell and I wondered if she was related in any way to the Murray family of Berkhamsted Place. This led me to research into our own extraordinary member of the Murray family, Anne, the youngest daughter of Thomas and Jane Murray of Berkhamsted Place.

Berkhamsted Place

Berkhamsted Place

There was a connection, Elizabeth Murray’s father William was the nephew of Thomas Murray of Berkhamsted Place, making Elizabeth of Ham House and Anne first cousins once removed. Both women played a part in protecting and supporting the Royal family during the Civil War.

Janice Boakes, Chronicle v.XVI (Mar 2019).