After reading about the WIGHAM family (on the WALTON side of my family tree), and discovering how good the Quakers records are, that are now freely available on-line, and a seaming propensity of the Quakers in the 1800’s to publish books about their family histories, I decided to do some web searches to see what else I could turn up in other parts of my ancestry.
On the ELLIOTT side of my family are the FRYs; a Quaker family, well known for chocolate making and prison reform. The FRY family is very well recorded, and has long been the longest traced line of my ancestry that I know of, going back to my 13x Gt-Grandparents. Several other (perhaps notable) Quaker families married into the FRY line, of whom I have some details, but also an impression that there is a lot more available to find. Among these are CLARENCE, of Sampford, in Essex, and STORRS, of Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
So a few weeks ago, after doing a few Google searches trying different surnames, places, and different combinations of them, I found a book about the STORRS family; THE STORRS FAMILY; Genealogical and other Memoranda, by Charles STORRS, published privately in New York, USA, in 1886. So I’ve been reading this over the last couple of weeks and trying to draw some trees from it!
In my family tree, I have details a couple of generations of the STORRS of Chesterfield. Two sisters; Mary and Martha STORRS, married two FRY brothers; John and Richard FRY, in the 1720’s. I had some details for Mary and Martha STORRS’s parents and grandparents, but no further back! This book; THE STORRS FAMILY; Genealogical and other Memoranda, pushes the details I have back another 4 generations to my 13x Gt-Grandparents, making it as long as the FRY line.
The book begins with a look at the origins of the STORRS family name, and a rather tenuous look at a STORRS family from Lancashire, with connections to Aristocracy, based on details that the author obtained from the College of Arms, in London, in 1879! There seems to be no clear evidence for a connection between this family and the STORRS who are the subject of the rest of the book!
From page 19, a proper family tree begins to emerge, interwoven with the author’s story of his journeys to discover the information. The author identifies the STORRS family as originating from Sutton cum Lound; 3 miles north of Retford, in Nottinghamshire. Charles STORRS (the descendant of Samuel STORRS; an emigrant to America) had been in touch with various members of the STORRS and FRY families in Britain, and describes a visit that he made to Sutton cum Lound in 1867. He had subsequently obtained copies of the wills of a succession of STORRS family members, from a Dr John SYKES, M.D. of Doncaster, the earliest being one by a William STORRS of Sutton cum Lound, dated 1557.
What follows is my attempt to summarise the genealogy of the STORRS family, as described in the book, focusing on my direct ancestral line. Much of this comes straight from the book, but with some comments of my own. I try to distinguish between the “facts” derived directly from the transcribed wills, the assumptions/interpretations of the book’s author, Charles STORRS, and my own assumptions/interpretations. My own assumptions, and those of Charles STORRS, should be treated with caution!
The will of William STORRS [xiii](1), “of Lound of the parish of Sutton” was dated 3rd August 1557, and was proved at York on 6th October 1557. It names his wife, Dorothe, and 5 children; 2 sons;
- Robert (2).
and 3 daughters;
William’s will also mentions a Thomas STIRROPP (associated with his daughter, Elizabeth); John and William STIRROPP, and Robert HAWMONDE as witnesses, and John, Thomas, and X’ofer (? Christopher?) RAYNE as “supervisors” of his will.
The will of Robert STORRS [xii](2) “of Lounde in the parish of Sutton and in the County of Nottingham, Husbandman” was dated 16th May 1588, and was proved at York on 5th February 1588-9. It appears that Robert had been married twice (this is the suggestion of the book’s author, Charles STORRS; though it is not entirely clear from the transcribed will!). The son of the first wife was Cordall STORRS [xi](3). The book’s author suggests that the name “Cordall” may have come from his mother’s maiden surname, being “an old surname in Devonshire”.
Robert’s will goes on to name his (2nd) wife as Mabbell, and her 4 children;
- Robert (4).
It also mentions John and Thomas HAMOND as “supervisors” of his will, and Thomas STIRROPE, Thomas PYE, and John WILKINSON as witnesses.
The will of Cordall STORRS [xi](3) “of Lound in the county of Nottingham” was dated 23rd February 1615-16, and proved at York on 10th October 1616. Cordall names his wife Isabell(a), his mother, Mabel (presumably his step-mother!), his brothers, Robert and John, and sisters, Dorothy and Anne. He names the following children:
- Thomas (5).
- William (6).
Cordall also names two uncles; John and Nicholas HAMOND, making them supervisors of his will. From this comes an assumption that his (step-)mother’s maiden name may have been HAMOND. Also mentioned are Robarte and Thomas HAMOND, and “Thomas STIRROPP of Lincoln, Gent.”
The next will is that of Robert STORRS [xi](4), (half-)brother of Cordall (3), “of Lound in the parish of Sutton upon Lound in the county of Nottingham, Yeoman”, dated 12th July 1658, and proved at York, 29 March 1662. He was buried in Sutton on 23rd Dec. 1661. He appears to have been a bachelor as he names no descendants of his own. He mentions his deceased brother Cordall STORRS (3), his nephew Thomas (5), son of Cordall, and Thomas’s children; Thomas, Cordall (7) (who Robert makes his executor), Samuel, Joseph, Elizabeth and Mary.
Also named in this list are a Robert, and Sara STORRS, who do not fit with the baptism records for the children of Thomas STORRS (5) (see below)! The book’s author suggests that Sara may be the daughter of William STORRS (6). But by my reading of this will, I wonder if these are grandchildren of Thomas (5), by his son, Thomas!
Robert also names the children of a Thomas HAMOND (deceased) as; Jervis HAMOND, Marie HAMOND, and Elizabeth SCOTT (I suspect these were his cousins, or the children of a cousin!), and the unnamed “children of William REYNES”.
No will of Thomas Storrs [x](5) has been found. He was baptised on 25th April 1605, in the parish of Sutton cum Lound, and married Mary —— . Their children were baptised in the parish church of Sutton as follows:
- Thomas; bapt. 27th Jan. 1632-3.
- Cordall (7); bapt. 21st Sept. 1635.
- George; bapt. 29th April 1638; d. April 1653.
- Samuel; bapt. 7th Dec. 1640; the emigrant to America.
- Joseph; bapt. 20th Aug. 1643.
- Elizabeth; bapt. 8th Feb. 1648-9.
- Mary; bapt. 2nd Nov. 1650
William STORRS [x](6) was baptised on 24th Feb. 1610. His will, dated 29th March 1643, was proved at York on 17th October 1643. He died aged just thirty-three. In his will, William “of Sutton upon Lound in the county of Nottingham, Yeoman” makes his wife, Mary, executrix, and names his mother as “Isabell Greene, widow”, which makes it appear that she married a second time. He names his children;
- William (8).
William mentions the children of his brother, Thomas (5) (unnamed, except for Cordall (7).), those of his sister, Mary, who was bapt. 20th Dec. 1607 (her children are also unnamed), and his uncle, John STORRS (brother of Robert (4).). William makes his “uncle John STORRS”, and a Robert CRUMWELL “supvisors” of his will.
The will of Cordall STORRS [ix](7), son of Thomas (5), “of Lound in the parish of Sutton in the county of Nottingham, Yeoman”, is dated 1st November 1698, and was proved at York, 10th April 1699. In it he mentions his wife, Anne, whom he makes executrix; his three sons;
and his daughters;
- Dorothy (m. MARRIOTT).
- Mary (m. PERKINS).
He also mentions “two grandchildren, daughters of Dorothy MARRIOTT”.
The book’s author, Charles STORRS, suggests that Cordall STORRS (7) “was married twice”, citing a record from the Sutton parish registers of a marriage on 9th July 1655, “between Cordall STORRS, Yeoman, and Elizabeth CRUMWELL, spinster”. A “Robert CROMWELL” (or CRUMWELL) was a witness to Cordall’s will, along with a James MASON, and Thomas PYE. One other name that appears in Cordall’s will is his “Brother Henry HEADLEY, Gent”. I wonder if this is a brother of Cordall’s wife, Anne! But its not clear.
There is a stone in the floor of the aisle of St Bartholomew’s Church, in Sutton cum Lound, to the memory of this Cordall STORRS who died in 1698, aged 63, and to his wife, Anne, who died on 4th July 1711.
William STORRS [ix](8), the eldest son of William (6) and his wife, Mary, was baptised on 30th June 1638. He joined the Society of Friends (Quakers) and settled at Chesterfield. “The family which he founded was well known, his descendants having intermarried with many distinguished families among the Society of Friends”. The book’s author, Charles STORRS, writes that he has “received genealogical charts from several of these descendants, in some of which he (William (8)) is named as “Storrs of Lound”.”.
One family tree (which I copy below), is printed in Charles STORRS’ book, showing William STORRS (8), and four generations of his descendants. My 5x Gt-grandfather, Henry FRY is in the bottom left-hand corner of this tree.
Please click on the image below to view at full resolution.
William STORRS [ix](8) married Sarah SYKES (born in 1638), the daughter of William SYKES, “Lord of the Manor of Leeds in Yorkshire, Mayor of that town”, and his wife, Grace JENKINSON. George Poulson’s “History of Holderness, Part II”, page 92 is cited as a reference for more details about the SYKES family line. I’ve found several other publications that also describe the SYKES family line. See;
- The Baronetage of England, Vol.4, published in 1804 (via Google Books); P.131, & tree on P.133.
- A series of picturesque views of seats of the noblemen and gentlemen of Great Britain and Ireland (via Archive.org); P.20 lists a line of descent in the SYKES family, including William SYKES, taken from Burke’s “Peerage and Baronetage”.
The children of William STORRS and Sarah SYKES were;
- Joseph (9), b. 1670
- John, b. 1671
- Esther, b. 1673
- Sarah, b. 1675
- Caleb, b. 1680
- Joshua, b. 1683
- Mary, b. 1686
William and Sarah’s eldest son, Joseph STORRS [viii](9), married in 1702, to Katharine FROST, daughter of Henry FROST of Bridlington, Yorkshire. The book cites records kept by the Quakers, and by the FRY family, which tell something of the lives and ministry of Joseph and Katharine.
Two of Joseph and Katharine’s daughters, Mary and Martha, married brothers, John and Richard FRY.
The book, THE STORRS FAMILY Genealogy goes on to talk a little about some other branches of the STORRS family in Britain, before focusing particularly on the descendants of Samuel STORRS (a son of Thomas Storrs (5)) who emigrated to America.
I would be interested to hear from anyone who knows more about the people named above; particularly regarding the nature of some of the relationships which are unclear from the details available here. Please leave a comment below, or use the Contact Page to get in touch.