Friday, July 01, 2011

People From Off

This map shows parishes which in 1670 had significant numbers of surnames of English origin not found in the locality at the time of the Acts of Union in the previous century.

It's sometimes said that these incomers were Cromwellian soldiery settled in the county after the Civil War. Infact wills show that some of the more familiar names were settled in Radnorshire before that time: Mantle (1617), Harding (1628), Wilde (1637), Russell (1625), Jarman (1629), Gregory (1620), Mason (1625), Bebb (1620), Bufton (1633), Hamer (1639).

Some of these names and others found in 1670 such as Kinsey, Wozencroft, Wilson, Hatfied, Bright and Ingram are associated with the 16C plantations in Montgomeryshire, see here. One has to ask if something similar happened in some of the parishes in Maelienydd? Because there was no religious divide these newcomers were quickly integrated into the mainstream community.

In the 1540s the Knighton was a very Welsh place with the great majority using patronyms, by 1670 the town had probably doubled in size, to around 600, and some 40% of the householders had English names. Interestingly only a couple of these surnames - Woolley and Norgrove - are used by natives of the town by the time of the 1881 Census. Who were these here today gone tomorrow 17C Knightonians and what became of them?

No comments: