Hemsworth, Yorkshire


These next blog posts in early Yorkshire are only my understandings and interpretations of the available remaining records for the time frame and exact place.

The records are in the main extremely hard to read, in bad handwriting, alternative spellings and/or mostly in Latin.


The record of interest as an example is one for “Jane fillia Henricus Roydhoufe et Catherine .. baptiz..”

The basic intent of this record is that Henry and Catherine Roydhouse had a daughter, Jane in April 1664.(Wragby)

I have not tried to trace the people beyond what I can glean from the records found in Hemsworth.

I believe that the locality with this surname is important to justify my theories- the surname not ever being very commonplace. I cannot extend the same beliefs to another locality due to the very common first names of the time.

Having said all that, I am enjoying trying to crack this extremely difficult puzzle, although I may not post every week while chasing these early families!!

Let’s start!!

The records for Hemsworth suggest that a Roydhouse family with at least three brothers Oursley, Francis and Thomas were living in the area in the early 1600’s. However, the men could have been cousins or one the father of the other two continuing his family, or even a father, uncle and son baptising children at the same time.

Oursley baptised a daughter, Faith in 1626.This document is only available “transcribed” and I have to accept not being able to read the original for myself- there are no other records for an Oursley anywhere. I can’t find any records of Faith in Hemsworth after her baptism.

Francis baptised Richard in 1627.

Thomas buried a son Roger in 1628.As Roger is listed as a son, he will most likely have been quite younger than 15.

Francis or Thomas also appear to have Edward and Thomas in their families. I would imagine they were born around 1635.

Edward baptised Rachell in 1662, Mary 1667 married Edward Huntingdon 1687 and possibly Eliza 1668(married Edward Milnor 1689)

Edward or Thomas has William circa 1665. His children included Dorothy 1680, Eliza 1685-1685; Margaret 1686; ,Prizile 1687-1700; William 1688,Mary 1694.Edward died 1705, a brother of the hospital.

Thomas and Ann baptised John 1663, Ann 1668 and Mary.

Ann the daughter married Robert Mitchell in 1685.

Mary the daughter married William Shepherd in 1695. John  1696; Edward  1699; Mary 1702; Margaret 1704

Ann the wife of Thomas died in 1693.

John the son of Thomas and Ann, married Ann Bayes in 1688.

Their children included:

William 1688; Marye 1689; James and John 1692; Ann 1695 (possibly married Joshua Clayton 1723); Thomas born and died 1697; Thomas 1698 m Elizabeth Bates 1720 ;Sarah 1699 and William 1700-1713.

Ann the wife of John died in 1704 and John appears to have died in 1709, recorded as a “brother of the hospital”

This form of classifying a person rose in the Middle Ages, when there were four types of hospital; for lepers, for poor pilgrims; for the poor and infirm and almshouses or bedehouses. The long term inmates were known as the brothers and sisters of the “house” and instructed to pray daily for the souls of the benefactors- “bede” being prayer.

Many old churchyards had yew trees growing, the surrounds encouraged growth and the tree made strong bows. The construction of St Helen’s in Hemsworth was recorded in 1022.

Hemsworth’s  Yew tree is said to be between 700 and 1,000 years old, the ancient tree no longer grows but stands, weighing several tonnes and a girth of over 4.5 metres. It would have been already been between 300  and 600 years old at the time these Roydhouse families were flourishing.

Author: gorcat28

writing up my ancestors one week at a time

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