A buried past uncovered

Warwrick Castle, 1985

Warwrick Castle, 1985 (Part of the British Trust)

Photo above and below taken by me when David and I visited Warwick Castle.

Working on my family tree yesterday, I arrived at the thirteenth century in England.  So what, you might say…all our families go back to the thirteenth, eleventh or first century.  True, but its nice to identify a few of them.

The records I have been using were written in English.  I don’t speak or read German or Dutch or Polish, so his helps.  Sorry about that great-grandma Prxla.

I look at this branch of a branch of the English branch, and what do I find?  A long history of troublemakers.  I’m sure it’s longer and broader than I know, but it includes quite a mix of people…if its accurate.

Coworkers at the Census Bureau who were delving into their own family records tell me getting past the fourteenth century as you dig into the past is tricky.  Fellow historians have shared similar information.

The Black Death killed so many people, the records from 1350 for a century or so later are a mess. During the period we once thought of as the ‘Dark Ages’ the lights went out all over Europe because of a plague.  This partly explains why in the following ages Europe experienced an Enlightenment.  But I digress.

Should these records for my family be accurate, I have an ancestor who got himself killed at Evesham while fighting alongside Simon de Montfort against the son of Henry III, later become Edward I* (Edward was the nasty fellow who went after William Wallace).  I found paperwork that describes how the Crown seized his lands after his death. Other paperwork indicates his descendants made their way in the world as tradesmen, craftsmen, and merchants.

It makes sense to me that this noble was a relative because some of his descendants apparently fought alongside Black Tom or Lord Thomas Fairfax during the English Civil War. The descendants of these people fled England as the Puritans, and their descendants fought in the American Revolution.  Later, many of them fought for the Union Army during the Civil War.

*Wiki says:

Edward I (17 June 1239 – 7 July 1307), also known as EdwardLongshanks and the Hammer of the Scots (Latin: MalleusScotorum), was King of England from 1272 to 1307. The first son of Henry III, Edwardwas involved early in the political intrigues of his father’s reign, which included an outright rebellion by the English barons. In 1259, he briefly sided with a baronial reform movement, supporting the Provisions of Oxford. After reconciliation with his father, however, he remained loyal throughout the subsequent armed conflict, known as the Second Barons’ War. After the Battle of Lewes, Edward was hostage to the rebellious barons, but escaped after a few months and joined the fight against Simon de Montfort. Montfortwas defeated at the Battle of Evesham in 1265, and within two years the rebellionwas extinguished. With England pacified, Edward left on a crusade to the Holy Land. The crusade accomplished little, and Edward was on his way home in 1272 when hewas informed that his father had died. Making a slow return, he reached England in 1274 andwas crowned at Westminster on 19 August.

Warwick Castle, 1985

Warwick Castle, 1985

14 thoughts on “A buried past uncovered

  1. it is exciting to find out about ancestors – and fun when they turn out to be rascals! I have not gotten back reliably – past the mid 1700s with family, but that has been enough to find some questionable behavior.


  2. Your family history is fascinating Dianne. My sister used to live in a small village near the town of Evesham. Your photos are marvelous by the way. I have been enjoying them very much. I love the one with the gate particularly.


    • Thanks Denise. Warwickshire is absolutely beautiful. Been there several times and will visit again.

      Glad you enjoy my open journal entries. I write the information in my blog for my descendants and other relatives with our common ancestry. (One way to make a good permanent record.)

      My old camera, which I still have used film. I like the old photos best.


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