Friday, 15 June 2018

Family Tree from Robert del Dykes (1270-1315) to Wilfred Dykes (1674-1743)

(02) - William del Dykes (grandfather of Robert del Dykes) (no records)
(01)- ????? del Dykes (no records)
00 - Robert del Dykes (b.1270-d.1315) = Agnes de Croedayk
01 - Walter del Dykes (b.1308-???) approx. 1308-1360
02 - William del Dykes (b.1360 - ???) lives in the time of Edward II = Agnes, heiress of Sir Hugh Waverton
02 - William del Dykes (b.1400 - ???) lives in the time of Edward III = wife unknown
03 - William del Dykes (b.1440 - ???) lives in the time of Richard II = Jane, heiress of Sir Hugh Dystyngton,
04 - William del Dykes (lives in the time of Henry IV) approx. 1405-1460 = Katherine Thwaites, of Thwaites
05 - William del Dykes MP for Cumberland (lives in the time of Henry VI) approx. 1430-1485 = Elizabeth, daughter of Sir William Lee Thwaites, of Thwaites (Elizabeth is a descendant of William the Conqueror via WtheC’s sister)
06 - William del Dykes MP for Cumberland (???-???) approx. 1450-1500 = Christiana, daughter of Sir Richard Salkeld
07 - Thomas Dykes (???-???) approx. 1470-1540 = Isabel, heiress of John Pennington of Muncaster
08 - Leonard Dykes (???-???) approx. 1520-1580 = Anne Layton of Dalemain (in 1541)
09 - Thomas Dykes (???-???) approx. 1535-1600 = Jane, daughter of Lancelot Lancaster of Sockbridge
10 - Leonard Dykes (???-???) approx. 1560-1625 = 1st wife Anne, heiress of Radcliffe of Cockerton; (2nd wife Margaret Fretcheville of Staveley, niece of Lord Fretcheville)
11 -Thomas Dykes (???-1643) approx. 1600-1643 = 1st wife Joyce, niece of Lord Fretcheville; (2nd wife Jane de la Vale, heiress of Robert de la Vale)
12 - Leonard Dykes (1640 - 1720) = m.1660 Grace Salkeld, daughter of John Salkeld
Leonard & Grace had 7 children
3 x Girls: Barbara (b.1660); Grace (b.1677); Joyce (b.1672)
4 x Boys: Thomas (b.1662 d.1674 aged 14yrs); Leonard (b.1664 d.1679 aged 15yrs);
12(i) - Fretcheville Dykes (b.1666-1749) Heir;                                                   
13- Wilfred Dykes (b.1674-1743) who is my link.

Note: dates to be filled in on this page as the information is discovered and verified. 

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Dovenby Hall

Dovenby Hall was officially occupied by the Dykes family when they moved there in 1791 on the marriage of Joseph Ballantine-Dykes to Mary Dykes (who, prior to then, was the occupant).

However, the house became associated with the Dykes family many years earlier.
Leonard Dykes (grandson of Fretchevill Dykes born in 1666) married (in 1728) Susanna, daughter of the Reverand Thomas Capstack, and they had two sons; Fretcheville Dykes and Lawson Dykes.
It was Fretcheville Dykes who married Mary, daughter of John Brougham of Cockermouth.
Fretcheville and Mary had only one child, a daughter called Mary Dykes and she was fortunate enough to inherit Dovenby Hall from her uncle Peter Lamplugh Brougham, on his death.
Subsequently, in 1791, Mary Dykes married her cousin Joseph Ballantine-Dykes.

Lawson Dykes (younger brother of Fretcheville) was married in 1765, to Jane, daughter and heiress of John Ballantine.  As a consequence of the marriage, Lawson took on the surname of his wife's family and the Coat of Arms becoming Lawson Dykes-Ballantine.

Lawson and Jane had three children: the first being Joseph Ballantine-Dykes who married Mary Dykes (see above). Then came Fretcheville Ballantine-Dykes who served in the East India Company, and their sister Mary Dykes who married James Spedding.

So, Mary Dykes inherited Dovenby Hall and, in marrying her cousin Joseph Ballantine-Dykes, managed to keep the house in the family.

Joseph and Mary had a lot of children (ten), and this is where my line of the Dykes family separates from the titled Dykes (or Ballantine-Dykes) family.

Fretcheville Lawson Ballantine-Dykes would have retained the titles, and had to use the name Ballantine, as would his brother Joseph (who took holy orders at Oxford);  Lamplugh Brougham, Lawson Peter, and James William.

Unfortunately, as my family name is plain "Dykes" and not Ballantine-Dykes, my branch of the family that leads to William Dykes born in 1919 either (a) broke off before the marriage in 1728 of Leonard Dykes and Susanna Capstack; or (b) Leonard and Susanna had 10 children and Leonard also had a child with an unknown woman (how someone found this out is anyone's guess).  It is unlikely that one of the male children fathered Wilfred as the eldest would have been born in 1729.  So it's possible that Wilfred is the illegitimate son of Leonard! But it is more likely that Wilfred's father was Leonard's uncle.

Whatever, it would seem the only connection my family has with Dovenby Hall is the family crest and motto; examples of which should be found within the Hall; as Leonard and Susanna did not live there - Dovenby Hall was inherited by their granddaughter Mary.

My earliest proven relative is Wilfred Dykes born in 1747.  He married Mary Winn and had one child with him, John Dykes born in 1801 (died in 1838).  However, the reason for having only one child with Mary Winn was because he died, as Mary Winn married again in 1805 to Samuel Moss.

The father of Wilfred Dykes is proving tricky to identify, as he was probably born between 1720-29.

This information is from Burke's Peerage published in 1826, and "A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Commoners of Great Britain and Ireland".

Monday, 11 June 2018

Warthole Hall and Cockermouth Castle

The original Warthole Hall was occupied by the Dykes family in about 1540 after they acquired it following Henry VIII's Reformation of the Church. Prior to then, Warthole Hall was a monastery: the manor of Warthole belonged formerly to the Abbey of Calder.

This building was demolished in about 1670 as that's when the replacement hall was built.

The original Warthole Hall would have looked something like this.

This photograph is of Blencow Hall which is also in Cumbria. It is a fortified manor house, and the original manor house is in the middle, with the fortifications in the form of towers at each end.  The replacement Warthole Hall, built in 1670 (and demolished in 1830) was built to a design by William Thackery of Thorpenhow.

At about the same time, William Thackery also remodelled Drawdykes Castle, which is situated close to Hadrian's Wall on the North-East side of Carlisle, and it is possible that Warthole Hall was a larger version of this style of house.


Cockermouth Castle is now a private home, but the owners occasionally open it up to the public, and here is a picture of the dungeon where Thomas Dykes uttered the words "rather broken than bent" when he would not renounce allegiance to the King (Charles 1st) and join the Parliamentarians, and so he was tortured and left to die in the dungeon at Cockermouth Castle.  Note that the dungeon only has one small window.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Early history of the Dykes family

The earliest member of the Dykes family that I can find is Robert del Dykes who was born in 1270.

The earliest mention of the his name name in official records relates to the year 1303.  In that year, the lands of John de Mulcastre (tenant in chief) were taken from him by the crown (King Edward 1st) due to the "enmity and rebellion of Alice, niece of John, who stays with the Scots the king's enemies"; and the land was awarded to Robert de Crokedayk, of Great Waverton in Cheshire.

On the death of Robert de Crokedayk there was no male heir, so the official records states the land is to be split in two equal parts and inherited by the sisters of Robert de Crokedayk; Agnes and Christiana.

Agnes de Crokedayk was the wife of Robert del Dykes at the time of inheritance, and so had the name Agnes del Dykes.

She and her sister, Christiana de Crokedayk were not the automatic beneficiaries. As there was no male heir, the lands automatically passed to the Crown on the death of the male line. Representation had to be made to the Crown for any female heirs to inherit, and this was recorded by Royal Charter on 20th February 1304 (see below). In order to obtain the lands, Robert del Dykes swore allegiance to the crown (fealty) and so assumed control of the share of his wife's sister, Christiana de Crokedayk.

Robert del Dykes died aged 45 in 1315. He and Agnes had two children; Agnes del Dykes born in 1306 and Walter del Dykes born in 1308 (I can't remember where I found this information). Agnes, wife of Robert del Dykes, was born in 1279 in Waverton Cheshire.

At this time the language of the landed-gentry was undergoing change as, since 1066 and the Norman victory at the Battle of Hastings, the principal language of Court was French. With the Norman victory, all the English Barons, Dukes and other peers of the realm lost their lands to the victorious (French-speaking) Normans . In order to regain control of their lands, the English had to marry their daughters to the Norman lords.  In the meantime, for about 200 years, French remained the principal language of Court.  The first king who spoke English as his first language was Edward 1st.

From Burke's peerage (see below) there appears to be a bit of confusion. The male line starts with William del Dykes and not Robert del Dykes.

It is further confusing as William is married to Agnes, heiress of Sir Hugh Waverton of Waverton. Are Robert and William the same person?

From the above, after a number of "William" Dykes - possibly 9 in a row - and the one that is of interest is  there came a Thomas Dykes, whose some was Leonard Dykes.  Leonard is very interesting and he married Margaret Fretcheville (the Fretcheville name was then associated with the Dykes family for over 200 years). 

At this point we can get an idea of the date as the son of Leonard Dykes was another Thomas Dykes, who is described as a "distinguished cavalier".  This almost certainly relates to the time of the English Civil War between 1642-51.  Thomas Dykes is the source of the family motto Prius frangitur quam flectitur "rather broken than bent".  Thomas Dykes, was a Royalist at the time of the English Civil War during the reign of Charles I, secreted himself at Wardhall (Warthole Hall) after the defeat of his party at the Battle of Marston Moor on 2nd July 1644. Thomas Dykes is then reputed to have hid in many areas of his land, including in a mulberry tree, which stands to this day (it sits on land behind a bungalow adjacent to the site of Warthole Hall - see aerial photo below, the tree is at the bottom of the photograph and the outline of Warthole Hall can be seen in the field). 

Unfortunately, Thomas Dykes was soon captured by the Parliamentarians and imprisoned at locally at Cockermouth Castle. Thomas Dykes was offered his freedom and the restoration of his property if he would become a traitor to his King by joining the Parliamentarians, but responded with Prius frangitur quam flectitur - Sooner broken than bent. 
Thomas died at Cockermouth Castle and, such was the strength of the story, the family adopted Prius frangitur quam flectitur as the family motto, and the mulberry tree as a family symbol..

Before he died, Thomas had two wives, the first being Joyce, niece of Lord Fretcheville of Staveley, and his 2nd wife was Jane de la Vale.  His heir was Leonard Dykes, son of Joyce.  It would appear (I need to do some research) that Leonard Dykes raised his game for his bride as he was married to Grace Salkeld who was decended from Richard Huddleston who was married to Margaret Nevill who was the illegitimate daughter of the Earl of Warwick (the man who would be king).  

Monday, 4 June 2018

A family name - Dykes

When you have an unusual family name, then childhood can be difficult as children are not, in the slightest, diplomatic.  To try and avoid the inevitable teasing, it struck me at an early age to adopt a "friendly" nickname as my own and, for me, that was "Dixie".

However, having an unusual family name has the benefit of making it fairly easy to research, mainly as there are not as many of us about - if there were, the surname would not be unusual.

Over the next few months, this page will be filled with anecdotes, photos, and (hopefully) stories of ancient ancestors and their derring-do.

In the meantime, here's the few lines on Wikipedia about the family name of Dykes.

Dykes is a British surname which may originate from the hamlet of Dykesfield[1][2] in Burgh-by-SandsCumbria in the north of England. Due to its close proximity to the English and Scottish borders, the surname Dykes has also been found in Scottish lowlands throughout the ages. The first family to bear the surname (for which written records survive) are said to have lived in the area prior to William the Conqueror's Norman conquest of England, with the oldest surviving written document placing them in Dykesfield at the end of the reign of Henry III.[2] The family took their surname from Hadrian's Wall,[1][3] also referred to in some texts as Hadrian's Dyke. The great wall crossed Great Britain from the mouth of the Tyneto the Solway Firth and forms part of the border for Dykesfield.
At this early period of history, however, the surname existed in a different form from the modern day; del Dykes, literally meaning 'of the Dykes', indicating the region from where the family came. A charter, bearing the first known recorded instance of the surname, comes from either the reign of Henry III or Edward I, though the exact date of the record is unknown. It does, however, reveal that land owned by one Robert del Dykes at Burgh was conveyed to one William del Monkys.
An alternative derivation for the name is that it is from the common personal name "Dick" (a diminutive of "Richard"). It would therefore share its origin with a number of similar names such as Dike, Dicks, Dix, Dickson, Dixon, Dickins, Dickens and Dickinson.
The earliest historical records are from a family which was moderately wealthy for the time. Robert del Dykes owned land during the reign of Edward I, and in 1379, during the reign of Richard II, Adam del Dykes owned land further east in Yorkshire.
Another family member bearing the name William del Dykes is noted as having represented the Earl of Cumberland in the English Parliament during the reign of Henry VI. More is known about this William than those who had previously bore the surname. Records indicate that he married Elizabeth, the daughter of William de Leigh, Lord of the Manor of High Leigh. William del Dykes is also known to have received the manor and lands at Wardhall, Cumbria (also referred to as Warthole Hall[4] and Wardale), subsequent generations would come to use the land but would later move to Dovenby Hall in Cumbria.
By the 17th century it appears that majority of those bearing the surname del Dykes had dropped the prefix of 'del' and had begun simply using the surname Dykes, as it is most commonly found today. Thomas Dykes is one such family member who was responsible for the formation of the family motto and symbol used by the majority of his descendants and others bearing the surname. Thomas, a Royalist at the time of the English Civil War during the reign of Charles I, secreted himself at Wardhall after the defeat of his party at the Battle of Marston Moor. Thomas is reputed to have hid in many areas of his land, including in a mulberry tree, which stands to this day. It was all in vain, however, has he was soon captured by the Parliamentarians and imprisoned at Cockermouth Castle. Thomas was offered his freedom and the restoration of his property if he would become a traitor to his King by joining the Parliamentarians, but responded with Prius frangitur quam flectitur - Sooner broken than bent. Thomas died at Cockermouth Castle and, such was the strength of the story, the family adopted Prius frangitur quam flectitur as the family motto, and the mulberry tree as the family symbol.
While the surname had changed from del Dykes to Dykes by the 17th century further changes can be charted and, Dykes aside, other incarnations include Dawkes, Dyke, Dikes and Dike, though instances of the surname del Dykes can still be found.
It is still most common in the northern counties of the United Kingdom, particularly in Lancashire and Cheshire. Areas such as Liverpool and Warrington are some of the most populous to this day, records show that members of the family moved to these areas as early as the 18th century.
Outside of the United Kingdom, the surname can also be found in most parts of the Commonwealth and other former British Empire nations including Australia, the United StatesCanadaNew Zealand and Ireland (particularly Co. Sligo).