Vaughans of Bredwardine and South Wales


  • About British Genealogy
  • Early Descents from Drum Bennog
  • Major William Vaughan  Inquiry
  • The General Pedigree of the Vaughan Family
  • The Will of George Vaughan, Esquire
  • The Will of Thomas Vaughan of Pembrey
  • The Will of John Vaughan of Dunraven

Excerpts from “Reminiscences and Genealogical Record of The Vaughan Family of New Hampshire by George E. Hodgdon” Supplemented by an Account of The Vaughans of South Wales, Together With Copies of Official Papers Relating To The Vaughans of New Hampshire, Taken Out of The English Colonial Records In London by Thomas W. Hancock, Copyright, 1918, by R.C.Shannon

Early Descents from Drum Bennog

Drym ap Msenarch (called Drum Bennog)

  • Drym ap Msenarch = Gwenllian, dau. of Iestyn Gwrgan, Prince of (lord of Cantreselyff Glamorgan. (= is author’s abbreviation for “married”)

(Brecknock Family)

  • Moreiddig Warwyn = Elen, dau. of Rhys, Prince of all South Wales: (circa 1060).
  • Llywelyn = Joan, dau. of Cyhylayn, lord of Ystrad-Yw.
  • Sisyllt = Lucy Madog, dau. of Gr. ap Madog.
  • Howell = Gwladis Vychan, dau. of Morgan Vychan, lord of Ayron.
  • Rhosser Vawr = Joice WalbiefT, dau. of Sir Wm. Walbieff, lord of Llechryd. of Cantreselyff.
  • Rhosser Vychan = Baskerville, dau. of Sir Miles Baskerville.

(Vaughan Family)

  • Gwallter Vychan = Florence Bredwardine, dr. of Sir Walter (Walter Vaughan.) Bredwardine.  Called ” Gwallter Sais (or Seyes),” because he lived so much in England.  
  • Rhosser Hen = Ann Devreux, dau. of Sir William Devreux.
  • Sir Roger Vaughan = Gwladis Gamine. (of Agincourt, France.)

About British Genealogy

Excerpts from “Reminiscences and Genealogical Record of The Vaughan Family of New Hampshire by George E. Hodgdon” Supplemented by an Account of The Vaughans of South Wales, Together With Copies of Official Papers Relating To The Vaughans of New Hampshire, Taken Out of The English Colonial Records In London by Thomas W. Hancock, Copyright, 1918, by R.C.Shannon

Genealogists, in England and Wales, were of two Orders — the Official or Professional Herald of the ” College,” and the Amateur, or collector of antiquarian and historical lore. The Heralds of the College of Arms or their deputies made formal visitations of the counties of England and Wales to collect and record family pedigrees. These ” visitations ” were made at (irregular) intervals during the reigns of Elizabeth and James I, in whose reign they ceased.

The other Order may be said to be always on the ground. Many of the Welsh “Bards” were, from ancient times, professional in genealogy and heraldry ; they were termed ” Herald Bards,” and were the Laureate Poets of the several lords in the Principality. Upon the question of ” Descents,” they said:

There are Five causes that descents should be kept; — 1. To make honorable marriages. 2. To make and show lawful title to land . 3. For Office in the State. 4. Chivalric honor and the avenging of wrongs. 5. To claim “Arms” from the King’s Herald when called to the King’s aid to the war — by exhibiting the pedigree that the Claimant was not plebian. — Ancient Welsh MSS.

The records of the Second Order of Genealogists are as reliable as those of the first named, and we have still their manuscripts well preserved, in the original autographs; bearing in mind that the work of both are not without their defects, from a variety of causes, of which the following may be noted:

Where the families of the ancient aristocrats were large (as were the Vaughans) the parents’ old mansion house was felt to cramp the wants and ambition of the children, and, in the majority of cases, the incomes from estates would be found insufficient to fortune all suitably.

Consequently, the younger sons who failed to make for themselves such marriages as would bring them into new fortunes in landed estates left the country homes for the cities to enter the learned professions, or took to foreign adventure, or joined the great trading companies, or entered the King’s service.

Some articled themselves as apprentices to leading merchants, many of whom were merchant princes in wealth and influence, or to leading trade citizens in London and elsewhere. The daughters also became widely divided by their marriages. To these, add the social disturbances in the reigns of the Stuarts, which especially helped the dispersions into the many diverging roads of fortune.

So the several genealogists, when they went to collect their facts and to count up the members of the families, met with the difficulties incident to and attendant upon such dispersions, and necessarily there would result various degrees of completeness and fullness in the several records made by the different hands. Pedigree charts or tables, in consequence of these incidents, necessarily require to be completed and filled by every document accessible, and the same to be afterwards collated.

Major William Vaughan  Inquiry

Note: Below is an abstract from British Court, in which the lineage of Major William Vaughan is verified. The original court document was written in Latin, and translated into English by Mr. Hodgdon.

Abstracts in English of two of these inquisitions (which are in Latin) will be given, relating to the Vaughans; and therein will be seen important particulars for the special pedigree, establishing dates, localities, and confirming the relationships stated by the genealogist.

MAJOR WILLIAM VAUGHAN was the son of George Vaughan, Gentleman and Yeoman, of South Harting, in the County of Sussex, England.

George Vaughan, according to an entry of the year 1695, in an old family bible (discovered by George E. Hodgdon, Esq., attorney, of Portsmouth, in New Hampshire, U. S. A., in the possession of one of the Vaughan descendants), was ” the son of Sir Roger Vaughan, a native and resident of Glamorganshire, Wales,” and was ” baptized the 10th of April, 1615.”

He settled in South Harting, and the entries relating to his children, and to his own death, in the said Bible agree with those in the Harting parish registers. They will be referred to in a few paragraphs further on. Here I must compliment Mr. Hodgdon in high terms for the enthusiasm he has shown, the discrimination evinced, and the success he has achieved in his labors in tracing out the connections of the Vaughan families in America.

Here I must compliment Mr. Hodgdon in high terms for the enthusiasm he has shown, the discrimination evinced, and the success he has achieved in his labors in tracing out the connections of the Vaughan families in America.

The only point of doubt in the entry is whether the said Roger Vaughan was in possession of the title of ” knight.” This point is specially doubtful, for the pedigrees given by the genealogists of the time call him ” Roger Vaughan, Esquire,” and he is not in the list of created knights.

He is placed by the pedigrees as of Brecknockshire, but the Brecknockshire and Glamorganshire estates of the Vaughans were intimately blended together. The Bible entry is probably correct in reference to this point, but as to the “knighthood,” there may be some doubt.

At the same time, it is just possible that, as he was the eldest son,* which is probable, he may have been ” popularly ” called ” Sir Roger ” among his friends and neighbors in his lifetime, since there had been so many of the members of the family, and in that direct line, knighted by the King.

The General Pedigree of the Vaughan Family

(1) Such extraordinary expansion in the various branches, and within a few generations only, that there would become an absolute necessity for the younger members to seek out new locations; and,

(2) A tendency among themselves to centralize into groups around these new localities. Falstone and Bishopstone became of importance to the Brecknockshire and the Glamorganshire Vaughans in this respect; there, and thereabouts, they made for themselves new homes, new friends, new relationships. Some of them who had entered into ” Holy Orders ” obtained good benefices in that district, and became cathedral dignitaries in the diocese of Winchester.

Sir Walter Vaughan, knight (son of Thomas Vaughan, the original purchaser), was the owner of Falstone at the time, and there are evidences that he took special interest in his kindred in South Wales. This affection for kindred, no doubt, drew his cousin George Vaughan thither, whence, subsequently, he found a settlement in Sussex, where we find these memorials about him.

South Harting is a very pretty village, lying under the shelter of the famed South Down hills, and. quite on the border of Hampshire, and only a few miles from Portsmouth. It was here that Mr. George Vaughan settled after his marriage with a Miss Boxall.

Here we discover also a small colony of Welsh people located, at the same time — Bennetts, Edwards, Ellis, Jones, Powells, Richards and other Vaughans, whose ” times ” are recorded in the parish registers. Marriages had taken place at an earlier date between the Bennetts, the Powells and the Vaughans in South Wales. Of the Bennetts of South Harting sprang the famous Thomas Bennett, Lord Ossulstone, whose record of burial is entered in the Register, in 1703.

Mr. George Vaughan’s marriage to Miss Mary Boxall took place in 1639, according to the old Bible entry. But of what family she was descended can not be ascertained as yet. There were families of that name living in South Harting. For in the parish Register is this entry: “Thomas Boxall* was buried — 1710.” (This is the only entry of Boxall in the Register of this Parish.— T. W. H.)

Their “marriage,” however, is not recorded in the register of this parish ; and the probability is that they were married in the parish in which the young lady resided, coming afterwards over to South Harting to live, which must have been pretty soon after the event. There were Boxalls in the adjoining county of Hampshire; there, most probably, she resided.

Their eldest son, William, was born in January, 1640, as will be shown by the extracts to be presently given.

Mr. George Vaughan died in 1699, and the parish Register gives this entry, that he was “Buried the 5th April, in that year. He was 84 years of age at the time of his death, and must have been about 54 years a widower. Being an old man, and lonely during so long a period, and all his children dead, save one, but who was very far off — in the “New World” — this in those days to an old man’s mind would mean a great deal, that is ” as good as dead,” to him. He bequeathed all his property, real and personal, to his neighbors — who perhaps were in some way related by kinship to him — the Bennetts. They, no doubt, were kind and attentive to him in his solitude and last illness. His will was proved in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury on the 4th of July, 1699. (See p. 144)

One is strongly led to believe, by the words of the will — by the repetitions, which are more than are commonly used in the recital of ” revoking ” of ” previous ” wills, that there existed an earlier one, which earlier one we may also well believe, would he in favor of his daughter Joane, who died a few years before him — in 1694 ; and perhaps would have bequests in favor of his son, who, as we shall see, was at the time a wealthy and an important person in the New England of America.

But he was in London, in the “old country,” in 1685; perhaps he had visited it even before that — (and again in 1703) on urgent matters relating to his ” Plantation rights,” which were threatened. We may well believe that he visited his aged parent, and from him refreshed his memory with particulars of the Welsh family history, and which accounts are at the present time interesting matters of tradition and history among the descendants in New England. South Harting is distant from London about 73 miles, and in those days this was more than a whole day’s journey, even with the quickest means of travelling.

The Will of George Vaughan, Esquire

Dated 5th Jany. 1698-9

In the Name of God, Amen ; the fifth day of January in the year of our Lord God 1698-9, I George Vaughan of South Harting in the County of Sussex, Yeoman, being very sick and weake in body, but of perfect minde and memory, thanks be to God, therefore calling into mind the mortality of my body and knowing that it is appointed for all men once to dye, doe make and ordaine this my last Will and Testament,

that is to say principally and first of all I give and recommend my soul into the hands of God that gave it, and for my body I comend it to the Earth, to be buried in a Christianlike and decent manner at the discretion of my Executor, Nothing doubting but at the general Resurrection I shall receive the same againe by the mighty power of God; and as touching such worldly estate, wherewith it has pleased God to bless me in this Life, I give, devise and dispose of the same in the following manner and forme;

Imprimis, I give and bequeath to William Bennett my house in South Harting, late in the possession of Edwards, paying unto John Bennett the sum of Ten Pounds of lawful money of England, to be paid in the terme of one year after my decease, with a greate ffiagon and pewter dish;

Item the Horse mill in Petersfield between Mary Bennett, Elizabeth Bennett, Anne Bennett, and Frances Bennett to be equally devided among them;

To Elizabeth Bennett two Cloth stools and a side cupboard;

To Frances Bennett, I give two Silver spoons;

All the rest of my Goods and Chattels I bequeath to William Bennett, whom I ordaine my only and sole Executor of this my last Will and Testament: And I doe hereby utterly disallow revoke and disannul! All and every other former Testaments, Wills, Legacies and Bequests Executed by me in any wayes before this time named, willed and bequeathed, Ratifying and Confirming this and noe other to bee my last Will and Testament, whereof I have hereunto sett my hand and Seale the daye and yeare above written.

The .Mark of George + Vaughan.

As His last Will and Testament in the presence of us the subscribed John Mayes, John Westbrook, John Bullock.

The will was proved for probate on the 4th of July, 1699, by William Bennett, the Executor, Chief Probate

Registry, London.

The Will of Thomas Vaughan of Pembrey

Dated 18th Febr. 1583-84.

In the Name of God, Amen ; the eighteenthe daye of the monthe of February in the yeare of our Lord God A thousand fyve hundred eighty and three And the twenty sixth yeare of the reyne of our Soverayne Lady Queen Elizabeth, by the grace of God, Queen of England, etc. I Thomas Vaughan of Pembrey, in the county of Carmarthen, and dioces of St. Davids, Esquier, being sicke in body but of good and perfect remembrance (laude and praise be unto the Almightie God) Doe make and ordayne this my present Testament conteyning herein my last Will in manner and forme followinge, viz.

First, and principally, I doe commend my soule to Allmighty God my Maker and Eedeemer and my body to be buried in the parishe churche of Pembrey:

Item, I doe give and bequeathe to the poor men’s box of the said parish of Pembrey aforesaid, Five shillings, the Residue of all my goods and cattells as well movable as unmoveable

I doe gyve and bequeathe to Catherine Vaughan, my wedded wyfe towarde the maintenance, education, and preferment of my Children, and payment of my debts;

The w’ch Catherine I doe appointe and ordeyne and constitute sole and only Executrix of this my last Will and Testament to dispose the same as she shall think best to the pleasure of God and the wealthe of my Soul.

Witnesses at the making hereof Thomas Richard, Clerk, Vicar of Pembrey, per me George Cundall, John Lloyd, Harry Vaughan, Roger John, Ienn Dauid ap Ienn’ Day, Hugh David ap Robert, William Rees, and others.

Probate granted 6th of May, 1584, to Catherine, “relicte et executrix.”

The Will of John Vaughan of Dunraven

Dated 20th Decr. 1625.

In the Name of God, Amen ; the twentiethe daie of December in the yeare of the Raigne of our Soveraigne Lord Charles by the Grace of God, of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland, king, the first, One thousand six hundred twenty and fyve. In regard of the certain daie of death, and the uncertayntie of the tyme th’of, I John Vaughan, of Downe Raven in the Countie of Glamorgan, gent’,and dioces of Landaph, sicke in body but whole in mind and remembrance (laude and praise be unto Allinightie God), fearing the pangs of death to approach, doe make this my Testament contayning herein my last Will in manner and forme followinge;

First, I commende my soul to Allmightie God and my body to bee buried in Christian buriall. And as for my temporall goods, I constitute and ordayne Sir Water Vaughan, knight, my only brother of Falersdowne, and county of Wilts, my sole Executor, in trust, for Margaret my now wife, and Watter Vaughan my eldest sonne;

Item, My will is that my sonne Watter Vaughan shall have hold and occupy and enjoy the lease of the Windmill in Gower within the parish of Llanwidden, and dioces of St. David, unto his the said Watter towards his maintenance, or the valuac’on thereof yearly, unto the said Watter Vaughan;

Item, I give and bequeath unto Margaret my wife, the lease of Klimston unto her for the maintenance of her children during her widow’s estate, and noe longer;

Item, I give and bequeath unto my brother, Sir Watter Vaughan, knight, the disposing of all my goods, chattels, and catties, according to his discretion, not doubting of his brotherly care herein.

John Butler, Clerke, John Thomas, Water Vaughan, William Harry, Water B(utler?), Joh. Price. Probate granted 7th Septr. 1626, to his brother Water Vaughan, ” the Executor named in the Will.”