Cornelius Burnham Harvey.

Origin, history, and genealogy of the Buck family; including ... branches in America ... descendant of James Buck and Elizabeth Sherman, his wife online

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Online LibraryCornelius Burnham HarveyOrigin, history, and genealogy of the Buck family; including ... branches in America ... descendant of James Buck and Elizabeth Sherman, his wife → online text (page 1 of 23)
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Counsellor- at-Law.


J. J. Griffiths, Steam Book and Job Printer.

Jersey City, N. J.


Entered according to Act of Congress in tte year 1889 by

in the Office of the Librarian of Congress at Washington.

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Two of the objects which the following work was originally in
tended to accomplish were : (1). To show something concerning
the ]?arentage, birth-place and early life of the brothers Emanuel
and Henry Buck, and (2), To show a perfect tracing of every one of
their lineal descendants, down to the present time. After a patient
and careful examination of the early New England town and State
records, and a laborious correspondence with those in charge at
the various sources of record information in England, I reached tbe
conclusion that the first mentioned object could only be attained, if
at all, by an extended personal examination of the records in Eng-
land, a work necessarily involving much more time and expense
than I could devote to it. I was therefore reluctantly compelled to
abandon an object, the attainment of which, would have been of
great interest to the reader.

Nor was I long in ascertaining that the accomplishment of the
second object, would require at least twenty years of labor, in col-
lecting and arranging the necessary data, and the publication of
several volumes. Tlie impracticability of such an undertaking, soon
led me to abandon it.

As it is, this work, like every other genealogical work, contains
many errors and important omissions. I have made some, and
the copyist and printer are each guilty of some. Many more
must be attributed to the hundreds of correspondents who have
contribvited to the subject matter. Records in family bibles, fre-
quently disagree with epitaphs, — particularly in the matter of
dates, — and the peculiar chirograph}' of the early civil and religious
record makers, are great impediments to accuracy. Besides, the nu-
merous changes in the way of births, marriages, deaths and remov-
als, which have taken place since the spring of 1887, when the la-
bor of collecting data was broken off, are not noted. It is custo-
mary, in works of this kind, to interlard them with portraits of the
wealth}' and more or less distinguished members of the family.
My experience has been, that few people care f(n' an album in such
a shape. Such a course, usually creates jealousy in the minds of
some, and places the cost of the book beyond the reach of a great
many. For these reasons I concluded not to adopt such a course.
There are a few instances m the tracing of the descendants of James

Buck and Elizabetli Sherman wliere I have baen unable to fill in all
the links. Such instances are owintj;- to the refusal of certain per-
sons to answer \nquiries, for reasfins best known to themselves,
and, where they occur, the reasons are stated. Where the matter
has been furnished me concerning tlje lives and characters of in-
dividuals, I have inserted it in a condenced form. To many per-
sons, family origin and lineage, are matters unworthy of con-
sideration. This is a mistake. I fully believe that respecta-
bility of origin, adds lustre to fame, — that " the glory of children
are their fathers." No reasonable man or woman should be insen-
sible to the value of an honorable origin and descent ; especially, if
to the chance of earthly fame, there be added the blessed memory
of the just. Although the present generation may not appreciate
the labor bestowed upon this work, I am confident in the hope,
that future generations will dechire it not to have been in vain.

To whatever of interest or value the readers of this book may
find, they will be largely indebted to the following individuals : —
Kev. Charles D. Buck, Middletown, N. J. ; Prof. Merwin S. Turrill
and Carter Gazley, counsellor at law, Cincinnati, O. ; Eoswell R.
Buck, Esq., Bufialo, N. Y. ; Mrs. Sarah D. Wheat, Rome Ridge, N.
Y.; Sherman P. Sedgwick, M. D., Wheaton, Ills.; Minot S. Gid-
dings, Esq., Bridgeport, Conn. ; Miss Sarah E. Allen, Mr. John S.
Turrell and Mrs. Rebecca Buck, New Milford, Conn. ;' Mrs, Hattie
Vail, Vincennes, Ind.; James B. Matson, Esq., Cincinnati, O. ; Sey-
mour Buck, Savona, N. Y.; Isaac S. Ford, Arlington, Rush Co.,
Ind.; Asaph Buck, Keokuk, Iowa, and many others, whose names
appear in the work.

Closter, N. J., March 15, 1889.




The surname Buck, like nearly every other extant surname, has
been variously written, by those who have borne it in past ages.

From numerous histories, chronicles, books of travel, biographies,
public and private records, documents, grave stones, &c., the follow-
ing versions have been gleaned :

Boc, Boch, Boclie, Bock, Bocke, Bok,- Boke, Book, Booke, Bouc,
Bouck, Boucq, Bouk, Bouke, Buc, Buce, Buci, Bucl), Bache, Buck,
Bucke, Buk, Bake, and Bucq,

T)ie first six of these, are confined to Germans, or their descend-
ants, and do not appear of record before tlie fifteenth century, while
fifteen of the remaining seventeen, are either variations or corrup-
tions of Ijhc or Buck.

Antiquarians disagree as to when surnames were first used by
mankind. It is asserted that they were unknown to the ancients.
But one of the prophets declares " Another shall subscribe with his
" hand unto the Lord and surname himself by the name of Israel." —
(Isaiah 44-5). There are otlier passages in the Old Testament, in-
dicating that the ancients were not without the idea of surnames.
In the early state of the Greeks, Romans, Persians, Egyptians,
Jews, Gauls and Britons, no individual bore more than one name.
The Romans, however, after they had divided into tribes and become
numerous and powerful, ado]ited ap]iarently for the convenience of
identification, three names. But the custom was confined to the
nobilitv, and to those who had obtained Avealth or distinction.

The Saxons appear to liave been the first of the nations of Northern
Europe to use surnames, and to have introduced the custom into
Gaul, as early as the fifth century, where, stimulated by chivalry and
fudalism, it took root and spread rapidly, being confined, however,
to the nobility. The Norman barons, all of whom bore the dignity
of surnames, introduced the custom into England, where it was at
once adopted by all orders of the people. It is a fact Avorthy of
consideration, that the great body of surnames which had been con-

ferred on or assumed bj the nobility, before, or at the time of the
Conquest, may with comparative ease be traced to their origin. On
the other hand, one of the most difficult tasks the genealogist can
attempt, is to trace to its origin, any one of those surnames which
were adopted by the common people after the Conquest. The
reason lies in the fact, that, from the fall of the Eoman Empire to
the Conquest, the good and bad deeds of the royalty and the no-
bility — (who alone bore surnames) — were ^perpetuated, not only by
song, legend and tradition, but by historians, chroniclers and men
of letters, and thus these surnames have, by the assistance of
memory and the potent and natural influence of kinship, been pre-
served through many centuries. While the common people, who
were rarelly mentioned, except collectively, bore surnames for
several generations, with no other agencies of perpetuation, than
memory and tradition.

For example, the surnames Lovell, Bruce, Percy, Bucl% Harvey and
a host of others, may be traced centuries back of tlie Conquest.

Among the early sources prolific of surnames, were animals, —
principally those Avhicli wei'e the objects of the chase, — ^and their
characteristics. By prefixing the definite article " le " to the name
of an animal, a surname was formed whicli in its primary applica-
tion was a sobriquet, allusive, either to the characteristic qualities
of the person, to some incident of his life, or to some figure upon
his standard or shield. Thus, persons possessed of the rapacity of
the wolf, the cunning of the fox, or the strength of the ox, &c., re-
ceived such names as le Wolf, le Fox, le Stere, &c. The records of
medieval times are sprinkled with sucili surnames.

The surname Le Buc (Buck), is one of this class of names, and is
allusive to the male of the animal known as the fallow deer, or to
some of his characteristics.

About A. D. 640, the Franks, a warlike people, originally inhabit-
ing Franconia, in Germany, under their leader Pharamond set-tied
in that part of Gaul, afterwards known as Flanders. Two centuries
later, a considerable portion of Flanders was governed by a tyrant
named Phinart. This was in the reign over France, of Clothaire 11.
of the Merovingian dynasty.

For many years, a bloody and unceasing struggle for supremacy
between the Franks and other tribes, had been going on.

Clothaire II. died A. D. 628, and was succeeded by his son
Dagobert I. This monarch began a reign which may be regarded

as the culminating point of the Merovingian dynasty ; for, by it, the
Franks acquired a decided preponderance among the western
nations. But although Dagobert's title was recognized from the
Weser to the Pyrenees, and from the Ocean to the boundaries of
Bohemia, his authority was little respected. He was little more
than King in name. To maintain their tottering power and preserve
the integrity of their domains, his predecessors had from time to
time, made so many concessions to the proud and refractory vassals
— the Counts, Signeurs and Lords — that these gentr}^ and their
adherents, had well nigh usurped the jurisdiction of the Crown.
Their rights were hereditary and irrevocable, and they claimed and
exercised the power of appointing the judges and tribunals of their
respective territories.

Seven years before, in order to appease the clamor of tlie rebel-
lious Northern nobles, Clothaire had proclaimed Dagobert King of
Austrasia, one of the three divisions into which France was then
divided. Upon his succession to the throne, Dagobert set about
efifecting some reforms in his domains. By personally visiting the
provinces, dispensing justice, and redressing grievances, he curbed
the cruelty and rapacity of the lauded nobles, with considerable

In A. D. 621, lie divided that portion of his domains called Aus-
trasia, into several provinces, the government of Avhich, he bestowed
upon his most trusty knights.

Among the distinguished personages who rendered Dagobert
invaluable services, in repelling and subduing the barbaric enemies
of France, was Lyderic, only son of Saluart, Prince of Dijon, a
man of " inniimei-able virtues," according to the old chroniclers,
who had been from his boyhood, schooled in the arts and vicissitudes
of warfare, and who was counted one of the bravest and most pow-
e)ful knights of his day. Besides his many good qualities and
virtues, his marriage with the Merovingian Princess Richilda, sister
of Dagobert, threw him into close relationship and sympathy with
the King, who soon marked him for the highest honors. Moreover,
Lyderic's mother, was the celebrated Madame Enigarde, the daugh-
ter of Giravd Signoui- de Roussilon, herself a princess of the royal
blood, and (uie of whose descendants became the wife of Charles
Martel, Fin])eror of France, which last circumstance, gave rise to
the beMutiful romance of provincal days, so highly lauded by Ray-
nourd, Fauviel and other writers on provincal poetry.


In A. D. 621, for having conquered and killed the tyrant Phinart,
Dagobert bestowed upon Lyderic, the government and fief of Flan-
ders, gave him the surnams of le Buc and a coat of arms.

The entry in the old Flemish chronicle is as follows: "Lyderic
" the first of the name called Buc, only son of Saluart Prince of
" Dijon and of Madame Emgarde, daughter of Girard Lord of
" Kouessilon, having conquered and killed Phinart the tyrant, Lord
" of Buc was appointed the first Forester of the country of Flan-
" ders, in the year 621, by the King of France, Dagobert and car-
" ried the first arms that are blazoned as being ' gnronny or et azur
" (gold and blue) of ten pieces in the middle of an escutchon gules,' died
" in the year 692.'" This coat of arms was probably one of the
earliest granted.

The origin of the title " Grand Forester," is unknown, but prob-
ably bore some relation to the wooded state of the country. Lyderic
Le Buck governed Flanders wisely and humanely, until his death.
In A. D. 6-40, he completed a castle on the bank of the river, which,
from its insulated position, was called " I'lsle," since easily changed
to Lille. In this castle, Lyderic's descendants and successors, as
Foresters and Counts of Flanders, resided for several centuries.
Guicciardine says its ruins were extant in his time. About this
castle, in time, grew the since famous City of Lille, Capital of Flan-
ders, which once vied in importance with Lancashire, England, in
the extent and value of its manufacturers. It is still " no mean
city" and contains some of the most valuable works of art in all
Europe. The celebrated Hotel de Ville, built by Jean Sans Peuriu
1430, contains forty-four of Eaphael's paintings. The portraits of
Lyderic Le Buc and several of his descendants, hang in the Musee
in Lille.

B}' Richilda, his wife, Lyderic Le Buc had fifteen children. His
descendants for six generations after his death governed Flanders
as follows :

I. Antoine, Second son of Lyderic Le Buc, First Grand Forester.

II. Bovchard, Third son of the last named Forester, &c., and
Lord of Harlebec.

III. Estorede, son of the last named Forester, &c., Prince of
Loraine and Lord of Harlebec. Died A. D. 792.

IV. Lj/deric Second, son of the last named Forester, &c., was
made Count of Flanders and Harlebec. Died A. D. 836.

V. lugleran, son of Lyderic II, Forester, &c., Lord, &c., was a

great builder of castles and towns. Died A. D. 852. Buried at

VI. Odacre, son of the last named Forester, (fee. Built the Castle
of Audeuaerde and tlie walls of Ghent ; rebuilt many towns. Died
A. D. 864. Buried at Harlebec.

Upon the death of Odacre, the title of Forester and Count of
Flanders passed to Bakhvin Bras de fer and his decendants, w^ho
held it for several centuries. The successors of Lyderic Le Buc,
depended less and less upon the Fraukish crown, as time w^ent by,
and at length, the Foresters of Flanders appear among the holders
of great state offices. At a latter period, they bore the sword before
the Kinirs of France at their coronation.



From the beginning of the reign of Edward the Confessor (1041),
to the reign of Henr}' III. of England, the Knights of Flanders
ranked as thc^ most daring and nnscrnpulous in all Europe. They
made a ])rofession, and sold their prowess to the highest bidder.
The learned historian Saint Paylaye says that " the business of a true
" knight was, ' first of all, to fight well, then to conduct a troop well,
" ride a horse well, and present himself at court wnth grace.' " This
writer is confirmed b}' a later one, Raynourd, Avho, however, says
that the Knights were in many essential qualities ver}'^ bad men.
The early chroniclers record many instances during this period, of
large bodies of these Knights of Flanders, known as " Roiterers "
and "Brabaucons," from their marauding propensities, having been
employed as mercenaries to repel the enemies of the English and
French monarchs. When tlius engaged, they distinguished them-
selves more by their rapacity and cruelty than by their bravery
and virtue.

Matthew of Westminster says, that in the reigns of Henry I.
aiivl Stephen, such was the insecurity of property in England that
owners thereof gave a part of their manors to such persons as
would watcli the roads and keep off assailants. "Knights of all
" kinds," says William of Malmesbury, "flocked into England, and


" especially from Flanders, who distingiiishecl themselves for their
" rapine," As an illustration of the character of these visiting
gentry, it is related by. the last named chronicler, that " one of
" them, in the reign of John, boasted that he had assisted to roast
" twenty-four monks. He had anointed his captives with honey
" and exposed them naked under a burning sun for insects to tor-
" ment." Matthew Paris says that these Knights " hung men by
" the feet, thumbs and head, smoked them to death, impounded
" them with beasts, toads, snakes, &c. In John's reign nearly all
" the castles of England were the dens of robbers and thieves from
" Flanders and Bretagne." They were generally in the employ of
the English King, but many of them found employment in the
Crusades, where they distinguished themsidves for their savage
brutality. From A. D. 864 to 1066 the le Bucs figured conspicuously
in the adventurous calling of Knighthood.

Gilbert de Gant, a Flemish noble, son of Baldwin YL, Earl of
Flanders, and nephew to William the Conquerer, led a large body
of Flemish Knights under his uncle William, and fought at Hast-
ings in 1066, for which service William gave him fifty-four town-
ships in several counties, principally in York and Lincolnshire.
This is the same Gant, who two years later so distingaished himself
at the slaughter of the English by the Danes and Scots under Edgar
Atheling at York. He died in the reign of Rufus, and his barony
descended to his son Walter, who will be mentioned again. One of
these le Bucs fought under de Gant at Hastings. The ''noil of Battel
Abbey " does not mention the name of le Buc, but " Domesday Book"
enumerates persons named le Buci, among those Avliom Duke Wil-
liam rewarded with lands, who were probably identical with the le
Bucs. Henry I. frequently emploved large numbers of the Knights of
Flanders to assist him in repelling the incursions of the Scents and
Welsh. On one occasion, in 1111, he colonized a number of them
in Pembroke, and later settled several hundred of them in North-
umbria, as a barrier against the impetuous Scots. A scion of this
Flemish family of le Buc's, named Rudolphus le Buc, fouglit under
Henry's standard early in his reign. For gallant services on the
field of battle, Henry granted Budolphns le Buc extensive domains,
north of the Humber, at Buckton, Eston and other localities in the
Wapentake of Bucrosis, in Yorkshire, where his descendants became
numerous and still flourish. This Rudolphus le Buc and his son,
Gocelinus le Buc, according to Camden, were joint founders, with


Walter de Gant, son of Gilbert de Gant, before ineutioned, of the
famous Priory or Churcli of St. Marj of Bridlington, in Yorksliire.
For the love lie bore to Rndolplias, Gocelinus and de Gant, their
parents and friends, Henrj granted them a charter. (SeeDugdale's
Monasticou, vol. vi., p. 785). Both Rudolplius aud his son, from
time to time, according to Dngdale, made extensive donations of
land to this priory. This spacious and magnificent edifice suffered
demolition in the reign of Henry YIII., and only the fortified gate-
house and nave are left to mark its site. Gocelinus le Buc, son of
E/udolphus, left an only child, a daughter.

In the reign of John over England, says Roger Wendover, one
Walter le Buc of Brabant, who is said to have been a lineal descen-
dant of Lyderic le Buc, first Forester of Flanders, Avas a Knight
aud Cadet of the House of Flanders. In 1215 King John during
his desperate struggle with the refractory barons, applied to the then
Earl of Flanders for assistance. The Earl forthwith dispatched
Fulcas de Bi'eant of Loraine and Walter le Buc of Brabant, two of
his bravest Knights, with a large body of Brabancon's soldiers and
cross-bowmen to John's assistance (see Roger Wendover.) They
were, to use the words of Matthew of Westminster, " a vile lot,
" thirsting only for human blood," who burned castles, committed
the most l)rutal murders, and in every way acquitted themselves
like fiends. De Braent was such a savage brute, that he was sub-
sequently driven from England and was finalh' poisoned, dying
miserably at 8t. Cyriac in 1227. Le Buc, although by nature
ferocius, was a soberer man aud bravely served John on manv occa-
sions, particularly at the attack on the Isle of Ely (121G.) William
of Maliuesbury, says Le Bnc was present at Runnymede on the
occasion of the signing of Magna Charta by John. King John pre-
vailed u})(>n Walter le Bnc to settle in England; and, as a reAvard
for services, as well as inducement to get such a brave Knight to
become a subject of England, John gave Walter extensive tracts of
land in York and Lincolnshire. Walter married, built his seat or
residence in Yorkshire, where, as the story runs, he met Gocelinus
le Buc who has been hereinbefore mentioned. Walter had several
children, one of whom was son and heir, Ralph by name. This
Ral])l), through the connivance of his father aud Gocelinus, married
the only daughter and heir of Gocelinus, and tlius after several
centuries, the two branches of the family became united. From these


two branches it is said, are descended all the Bucks in this country.
B^^ the time Edward I. ascended' the English throne, the le Bucs
had become numerous in Yorkshire and adjoining counties. A
direct descendant of Walter le Buc and the daughter of Gocelinus,
was Sir John le Buc who lived in the reign of E;lward I., as appears
by his deeds in Herthill made in the first and twent5^-second years
of that m, march's reign. He married a Strelley. She died young,
but left issue. This Sir John was so devoted to his wife, that upon
her death, he is said to have made a religious vow and joined the or-
der known as the "Knights of Rhodes." More than two centuries ago,
his arms were to be seen in the ruins of the Hospital of St. Johns,
near Smithfield, and in the church at All Hallows at the upper end
of Lombard Street. This last named church was built prior to 1033,
and repaired in 1516, with the stones brought from old St. John's
Hospital. The present structure was built by Sir Christopher
Wren in 1694 In 1273, after his return from the Crusades, King
Edward I. caused inquiry to be made into the rights and revenues
of the crown. These inquiries were made upon the oath of a jury
of each hundred in the realm. These inquisitions, when collected,
were opportunely called " Eotuli Hundredorum," the hundred rolls.
Seventy thousand persons are referred to in them. These rolls
were drawn up, when family names, which had been coming into
use for nearly two centuries, had become general among all classes
of persons. Some are in Latin, some in English and some in
French, with the prefix "le." In these rolls appear not only the
last named Sir John le Buc," Knight of the Rhodes," whose lands
are located and rated at Bucktown in Yorkshire, — but other per-
sons named le Buc having estates as follows : In Yorksliire, Roger
le Buc, Henry le Buc ; in Balberg, Suiiolk County, John le Buc ; in
the Hundred of Huntington, Amicia le Buc ; at Chelton, Margaret
le Buc; at Lyttonston and Brompttni, Richard le Buc; at Bromjj-
ton, Robert le Buc, William le Buc, Nicholas le Buc ; in Wiltshire,
Hugo le Buc, Ellen le Buc and Peter le Buc; in Bucks, Castro le
Buc; at Halton, Walter le Buc, and at Hingham in Norfolk County,
Edric le Buc. All these were the descendants of Randolphus and
Walter le Bnc, Knights of Flanders.

The several charters granted to Bridlington priory, from the
reign of Henry I. to Edward I., and the chroniclers and historians
of a later period, as contained in Dugdale, show that the family
seats remained at Buckton and Eston, in Yorkshire, and that their


descendants were donors and patrons of the convent and priory at
Bridlington, until its destruction b}- Heur\- YIII. In 1251, during
the reign of Heury III., William le Buc, of Bucktou, is mentioned
as One of the heads and donors of Bridlington Priory. The follow-
ing year, his son and heir, Robert le Buc, is mentioned as holding
lands at Buckton, and as connected with the convent. This Robert

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Online LibraryCornelius Burnham HarveyOrigin, history, and genealogy of the Buck family; including ... branches in America ... descendant of James Buck and Elizabeth Sherman, his wife → online text (page 1 of 23)