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3 1833 00085 2480

(Ibc 929.2 L99 5L

Lvon memor i a 1

Digitized by the Internet Archive

in 2009 with funding from

Allen County Public Library Genealogy Center







Robert B. Miller, of Brooklyn, N. Y.

A. B. Lyons, M. D. of Detroit, Mich.

Press of William Graham Printing Co.

Afien Counfy Public Library
Ft. Wayne, indiofla

Copyright, 1907
By Albert Brown Lyons, Detroit, Mich.







The original prospectus of thie Lyon memorial contemplated a sin-
>^ gle volume of possibly five hundred pages, which should include all
• - easily accessible information about the several Lyon families which e»-
Ji-^ tablished themselves in New England prior to the year 1650. As the
^ material accumulated, it became soon apparent that a single volume
^ would not suffice. In fact the monograph has given place to a trilogy.
/'■O With the present volume, the task taken in hand four years ago is
\^ brought to completion. It deals with the family of Thomas Lyon,
which, although belonging in the beginning to New England, was early .
'^ 1^ in its history transplanted into the neighboring State of New York.
* The publisher of the Lyon Memorial has been fortunate in en-

r\j listing for this portion of the work, the co-operation of a man whose
acguaintance with the subject has extended over many years, and has
been that of a professional genealogist — Mr. Robert B. Miller. It is
only fair to Mr. Miller to say that, while he has given shape to the
family history, furnishing the authentic data and references to au-
thorities that give to the narrative its high value as history, it has
not been possible for him to edit the whole of the material that has
been collected during the past year. For the foundation and plan of
the work, his is the credit; if the structure seem to the critical lack-
ing in symmetry and harmony, the fault is that of those who have
had to build independently upon that foundation, with such material
^ as offered itself. Very valuable assistance has been rendered by a
number of the descendants of Thomas Lyon. First and foremost
among those who have interested themselves in gathering details of
the family history must be named R. F. Skiff, of Iowa Falls, la., who
has traced down to the present time the history of many of the des-
cendants of Jonathan Lyon of Bedford. It would, perhaps, be invidious
to select for mention individuals from the many others who have
contributed data pertaining to their immediate relatives. Acknowl-
edgment must, however, be made of the aid rendered by Mr. Paul P.
Lyon of Mount Pleasant, Pa., in draughting the map of Westchester
County — an important addition to the value of the book.

Each volume of the Lyon Memorial is complete in itself, although
each contains matter that cannot fail to interest every Lyon who has



a proper family pride. The first volume of the series treats of the
families of William Lyon of Roxbury, Peter Lyon of Dorchester and
George Lyon, also of Dorchester. It contains an introductory chapter
on the English Ancestry of the American Lyon families, contributed
by Dr. G. W. A. Lyon, who has returned to the subject, with much add-
ed information, in the introductory chapter of the present volume.
The second book of the series deals with two of the brothers who
came to Fairfield, Conn., about 1648. This volume is edited by Sidney
Elizabeth Lyon, of Jeffersonville, Ind., who accepts the family tradi-
tion of a Scotch origin of these families. She treats in an introductory
chapter of "Some Old World Lyons," particularly the Scotch family
of the Earls of Strathmore. Prof. S. R. Winans, of Princeton University,
contributes an interesting chapter on Lyons Farms, illustrated with a
map showing the original allotments of land in the old settlement.
Another map shows the original allotments of land to settlers in New-

The present volume is devoted to the single family of Thomas
Lyon, at one time of Fairfield, and persumably a brother of Richard and
Henry, who were also "of Fairfield." Its distinguishing feature is the
index of places, which will be of help to any one who wishes to trace
the ancestry of any particular Lyon. The index includes descendants
of all the Lyon families treated in the several volumes of the Memorial.

The task which the writer of these lines assumed four years ago
is at last concluded. If it has been but imperfectly done, the half loaf
is better than no bread. It will be long before the complete and
adequate history is written. Meanwhile those who have collaborated
in preparing the Lyon Memorial will find ample reward for their labor
in the gratitude of their kinsmen who will owe to them some acquaint-
ance with a family history in which they may well take pride.


Detroit, Mich., Oct. 1907.



BY G. W. A. LYON, M. D.

(Member of the Pennsylvania Historical Society.)

"Lyons, a small district of France, to the s. e. of the district of
Bray, and n. of Lyons la For6t, on the left bank of the Andelle; for-
merly included within the extent of the Forest of Lyons, much more
vast than today." [Univ. Geography — v. de St. Martin.].

"Lyons la Foret, a village of the department of Eure, 20 kilometers
n. of Andelys, at the sources of the Lieure, a tributary of the Seine
through the Andelle, in the midst of a beautiful beech forest; 75 meters
altitude; 690 inhabitants, 1270 with the commune; sawmills and tan-
neries; church of the 13th and 16th centuries." [Gazeteer.].

This district and this town are of special interest to the Lyon
family, inasmuch as it Is from them that we derive our name. The
village has probably grown from the cottages that clustered about the
ancient Castle of Lyons, of which the ruins may still exist. The Cas-
tle and the forest are both plainly marked on old maps. Those who
can not find it on their maps, can place it quite accurately by marking
a dot a little to th-e south of east of Rouen, at the apex of an equi-
lateral triangle whose base is a line drawn from Andelys to GIsors.

The name was originally De Lyons — of the castle and forest of
Lyons. But phonetic spelling plays havoc with names: about 1100
variants of the name Cushing have been noted, and one name has
four variants in a single line. Lyon is spelled with and without the
de or the s; with y changed to i, e, oi or oy, ei or ey, or eu; the o
becomes a, e or u; the n becomes nne. It is found as Len, Line or
Lyne. By the monks it was sometimes written Lin, with the Latin
ending u s, or was more frequently translated literally Into Leonibua.
Whether It is the origin of Lynne is uncertain; while as n often as-
sumes a d, as In Simon — Simond, it may be connected with Lynd [see
Mass. Col. Rec, Thos Line or Lynd of Charlestown 1637].

In 1066, the Lord of Lyons hearkened unto the call of Duke William,
and for his services was awarded Corsham and Cullngton. The earlier
generations seem to have spent most of their time abroad. When Hen.
I. went to France to arrange the disputes arising out of the marriage


of his daughter Matilda with Geoffrey of Anjou, he stayed for some
time at the Castle of Lyons, no doubt as the guest of its Lord; and it
was at this castle that, after a day of hunting in the forest, he par-
took of a hearty meal of stewed eels, of which he was especially fond,
and "died of a surfeit."

Hugo, of the 4th generation, passed little of his time in England;
and it was due to his friendship with Richard I. that he incurred the
enmity of King John, whereby he was twice deprived of his estates.
Later the family became attached to the soil, though many county
histories tell how estate after estate passed from them, partly through
large donations to religious societies, partly through failure in the
direct male line.

The chief authority for the history of the English Lyons has been
the Rolls Office Pedigree [vol. 1.* p. 10.], printed in Welles' American
Family Antiquity. Mr. Philippe, the compiler, had access to the En-
glish records, and while his statements are, in the main, quite accurate,
his conclusions therefrom are in many cases contradicted by direct
evidence. As no records were kept until Hen. VIII., and even these
very incompletely, all data concerning the old families must come
from various documents of a legal or a religious nature. In the very
nature of the case, it is generally impossible to determine dates, and
therefore to decide upon the precise degree of relationship between
those who yet are unquestionably of the same household. A glance
at the published pedigree of the Earls of Strathmore will show that
it is impossible to prove a dear descent from the 11th century. In
this exegesis, the compiler does not attempt to cover the whole ground,
but confines himself to the evidence that he has personally examined.
He passes over the history of the Scottish branch, which is treated
fully in vol. II. of the memorial.

It has been claimed that Godfrey de Louvain, duke of Brabant,
was the head of the Norman family of Lyon; but this seems quite
unlikely. First: There was no duke Godfrey till some time after the
conquest; the dukes were the head of the family of Louvain; they did
not bear the lesser title de Louvain, which was borne by a younger son.
Second: Manning (Hist, of Surrey) says that Sir Nicholas Louvain
was a descendant of the noble family of Louvain, a younger branch
of the House of Lorraine; Godfrey de Louvain, surnamed from his

•Vol. I., throughout this chapter, means Lyon Memorial, Massachusetts Fam-


place of birth, had lands in England in right of his mother, grand-
daughter of King Stephen. Third: the name Louvain in England is
always Louvain, just as Lyon is always Lyon, disguised though each
may be by the well-established phonetic changes.

An interesting item, possibly bearing upon the relations with
Malcolm Canmore [vol. II. pg. 12.] is noted in Kennet's Parochial
Hist, of Oxford. "Waltheof, son of Earl Siward, for winning him over
to the Norman interest, received from William I. his niece Judith,
dau. of Lambert de Lenes [Lyons?] by Maud, countess of Albemarle,
dau. of Halwyn de Comitis Villa by Arlota his wife, and thereby sister
to Duke William by his mother."

"The name Loions," says the Duchess of Cleveland [the Battle
Abbey Roll], is derived from the castle and forest of Lions in Nor-
mandy" [see also the Norman People]. t "Ingelram de Lions came
in 1066, and held Corsham and Culington from the King. He had Ran-
ulph, whose brother, William de Lions, had a grant from Earl Wm. Gif-
fard, and left descendants. Ranulph had Ingelram de Lions, who was
named Parcarius, as being forester (parker) of Croxton Park, Leicester,
by exchange with the King [Hen. II.]. Wm. Parcarius de Lions
[his son] was a benefactor of Croxton Abbey tempo Hen. II. (1154 —
1189), and was a brother of Hugh, who was deprived of his estates
1203. One of this family [dropping the title, and assuming the name
of the oflBce] was ancestor of the family of Parker, and of the Earls
of Macclesfield."

"Earl Wm. Warren possessed Croxton," says NichoUs (Hist, of
Leicester). "He died 1160. Henry II. kept it for a while, but ex-
changed it for Corsham and Culington, of which two-thirds belonged
to William, son of Ingelram Parcarius de Lyons, a Norman who[se
ancestor] came with the Conqueror ["and one-third," says Lancashire
Inquests, "to Masilia de Apyard, held by bearing the standard of
the Parker when in service of the King"]. William was succeeded
by his brother Hugo; but King John gave his lands to Hubert de
Bergh, while Hugo was absent in Normandy. But he accompanjing
Richard I. back, his lands were restored, and he held them till 1203,
when John, in retaliation for the seizure of the lands of the English
in Normandy by Philip Augustus, seized the lands of the French In
England, and Hugo's lands escheated to the crown, and were given

tBurke says there was not a place in Normandy at that period which did
not, through its Lord, give name to some English family.


to Geoffrey Luttrel. William finished the abbey in 1162, and bestowed
the property for the [spiritual] health of his mother Matilda, his
father Ingeram, his brother Hugo, and his ancestors. The grant was
confirmed by Hugo, and other lands were added. Maud (Matilda) de
Perer, mother of Hugo, gave also her right in Croxton Park." This
park still exists.

The Monasticon Anglicanum is a compilation by Dugdale of the
historic records of the monasteries and abbeys in England. These
records were written by monks, and of course in Latin. Those relat-
ing to Croxton Abbey give substantially the account quoted from Nich-
oUs above; but as a matter of interest, an excerpt from the original
is here given.

Ex registro de Croxton penes Comitem Rutland apud Castrum
de Belvoir. "Habemus in Croxton de dono Willielmi Parcarii, filii In-
gerami Parcarii de Linus, duas partes de parco de Croxton et quicquid

in eodem sui juris fuit et libertates etc et duas partes carnucatae

[100 A.] terrae Rogeri Parcarii etc Item. Hugo Parcarius f rater

praedicti Willielmi confirmavit nobis dictum donatium secundum ten-
orem cartem ejusdem Willielmi. Item, habemus de dono ejusdem Hug-
onis duas bovatas [30 A.] etc. quas Reglnaldus filius Estmundi tenuit

etc. Item, idem Hugo dedit etc sicut Ingeram pater suus sive Will-

ielmus frater suus illud unquam liberius e^ plenarius possederunt

nobis imperpetuum possidendum Item. Matilda de Perer mater

praedicti Hugonis Parcarii dedit nobis in puram clemsinam quicquid
juris etc." Thereafter follows what is found in NichoU.

From these accounts, it appears quite evident that the four first
generations of our line were: —

1. Ingelram de Lyons, who came with the Conqueror.

2. Ranulph— William of Norfolk.

3. Ingelram de Lyons, called Parcarius (the Parker), m. Matilda
de Perers.

4. William— Hugo.

Probably there were other children: note the name Roger in Mon.
Angl. above. Ranulph, brother of Ilgeram, Ranulph, son of Ilgeram,
and Edmund, son of Paganus, are found in Norfolk Doomsday Book.
This last may be the Estmund referred to in the Mon. Angl. excerpt.
It is but fair to say that there is no proof that the three last were
surnamed Lyon. It is unfortunate that Mr. Philippe does not give his
authorities for the descendants of Roger [vol. I., p. 11] ; still the com-


pletion of the Victorian series of county histories may enable the
future historian to clear up many points that are now obscure.

William of the second generation settled in Norfolk. It was
probably the sons of this William who became lords of Weston. The
records are not so full as one could wish, and it is often impossible
to tell who's who. Blomfield (Hist, of Norfolk) gives the following
data: —

Ralph de Lions and William de Lions were the lords of Lyon's
Manor, Weston, and are mentioned in a grant of Wm. Giffard, 2d. Earl
of Buckingham.

In 1187 Roger de Leonibus impleaded Ralph de Birston for two
parts of a fee [800 A.] in Earl Warren's manor of Birston. Roger was
son of Jeffrey, who m. Mathilda, dau. and coheir of Wm. de Lions who
lived tempo Hen. II. (1154-1189), and left two other daus. and coheirs,
Hawise and Beatrice, and they dying without issue, he claimed it as
heir [through Matilda]. Wm. de Grandcourt, lord of Fulmodeston,
proving that Jeffrey had levied a fine of the same to his ancestor Wm.
de Grancourt, Birston held his possession, [compare vol. II., p. 11.].

In 1228 Walter de Grancurt purchased by fine of Jeffrey de
Leonibus one carnucate (100 A.) of land in Clipston-Croxton.

Wm. de Lions and his tenants tempo Hen. III. (1216-1272) held
one-half fee (400 A.) of the Honor of Richmond In Archbridge and
Swanington under Robt. de Furneaux. Wm. de Lions and Sibilla his
wife held lands here and in Weston and Helmingham of the Earl of
Clare. He granted a meadow at Brockdish Hall for the use of the
Almoner of the Priory.

Adam of Weston, living 1239, acknowledged to do service for one-
half fee (400 A.) to Wm. de Bnglefield for his lands in Weston etc.

Jeffrey Lyon and Thomas, son of Henry de Lions, are mentioned

In 1314 Hugh de Stanford settled by fine on Adam de Lyons lands
in Weston, Helmingham and Ringland for life, with remainder to
Ernald de Lyons his son and Alice his wife in tail.

In 1347 Adam, son of Ernald, released to Sir Peter de Tye lands
in Weston, — papers sealed with a lion rampant.

In 1391 Nicholas, son of Arnald of Weston, parson of Rollesby,
reciting that whereas Wm. Lyons of Flytcham had enfeoffed John
Stanford et al. in his manor of Weston-Lyons in Weston, Helmingham


and Moreton, which Where [sic] the said Arnald Lyons, Nicholas re-
leased his right in the same.

In 1401 Walter de Middleton held the fourth part of a fee (200 A.)
of the heirs of Arnald de Lyons, and he of the Earl of March.

No one of our name appears in the list of Norfolk gentry in 1500.

An incomplete pedigree would appear as follows, the dates show-
ing when they were mentioned: —

Ralph and William: very early.

Matilda, Hawise and Beatrice, daughters of William; the first m.
Jeffrey Lyon: before 1187.

Roger, son of Jeffrey and Matilda: 1187.

Jeffrey de Leonibus: 1228.

William de Lions and Sibilla, his wife: 1216-1272.— Adam: 1239.

Jeffrey and Thomas, son of Henry de Lions: 1303 — Adam: 1314.

Brnald, son of Adam, and Alice his wife: 1314.

Adam, son of Ernald: 1347.

William — ^Arnald, and Nicholas, his son: 1391. Arnald dead: 1401.

The Lyon family was established in Essex early in the 13th cen-
tury. The first known proprietor was Thomas, who may have been
that son of Henry de Lions of the Norfolk records. The main seat
of the early Lyons was near Saffron Walden. This Thomas m. Mar-
garet, and their dau. m. John Wydville, a son of that Richard WydvIUe
who m. Elizabeth, dau. of Sir John Lyon of Warkworth, Northampton.
A tabular statement of these marriages will show the double strain of
Lyon blood in the royal family of England: —

1. Sir John de Lyons m. Alice St. Liz.

2. Elizabeth Lyon m. Richard Wydville. Thos. Lyon m. Margaret.

3. John Wydville m. dau. of Thos. Lyon.

4. Thos. Wydville.

5. Richard Wydville, Earl Rivers.

6. Elizabeth Wydville m. 1st. Sir John Grey; m. 2d. King Edward
IV. By this 1st. marriage, Elizabeth was the ancestress of Lady Jane
Grey; by the 2d. marriage, she was the mother of the murdered princes
of the tower, and of Elizabeth of York, who m. Henry VII.

In the histories of the county by Morant, Chancellor and Wright,
we have little more than vague references, such as "Lyons Hall,
Chelmsford, was named from an ancient family." "In Hinchford Hun-
dred is the capital messuage of Lyons, so called from an ancient


family surnamed Lyon which flourished in this county tempo Edw. I.
—III." (1307-1377).

Listen Hall reverted to Richard Lyons, who was killed by Wat
Tyler (vol. L, p. 16). Shardlowe estate also belonged to him. Richard
was the famous vintner and lapidary. He was buried in the church
of St. James, Garlickhythe. Stow (Survey of London, 1598) says that
his house was next to the Hanse Merchants' Guildhall, Thames St.,
next to Cosin's Lane. He describes the "Picture on his gravestone:
very large and fair, with hair rounded by his ears; a little beard,
forked; a gown girt to him down to his feet, of branched damask
wrought to the likeness of flowers; a large purse on his right side,
hanging in a belt from the left shoulder; a plain hood about his neck,
covering his shoulders, and hanging back behind him." At the time
of his death he held the Manor of Overhall in Liston of the King in
capite, by service of making wafers on the King's coronation day, and
serving with them the King at dinner on that day. But long before
his decease he had enfeoffed Alice, Lady Neville, in the manors of
Netherhall, and in lands and tenements in Liston, Borle, Foxherd and
Penstowe. Netherhall was held of the Earl of March by the service
of 12 s. per year, and Weston of Thomas Monshensy for 1 lb. of pepper.
He had also the manor of Gosfield. Upon his death, these escheated
to the crown. He is said by some to have been Richard of Oakley,
mentioned in the Northampton pedigree; but Bridge says that the lat-
ter died 1361. A Richard was In Parliament tempo Richard II (1377-

John, the Lord Mayor, and wife Alice, were granted lands 1545
by Hen. VIII. Elizabeth, 2d. wife of John, held lands in St. Albans
1560 for the life of EUizabeth. She was dau. of John Lee of Stanford,
Co., Lincoln, and widow of Alderman Hynd, a colleague of Sir John.
His will was proved 1569. Richard, son of his bro. Henry, was hia
heir, and he died 1579, leaving a son and heir Henry, aged 27 years.
The latter died seized of the estates of Buckhurst in Chigwell and Wood-
ford in 1590 (vol. I., p. 17).

The arms of the Essex family are first mentioned in connection
with Thomas, 14th. century, and quite likely were assigned to him for
some special service; they are described as arg. a chevron sable be-
tween three lions sejant gules, and are impaled with the WydvlUe
arms. Later the coat bears lions couchant. Those in the British
Museum are badly drawn, and the position of the sleeping lions led to


the inference that they were rampant, in allusion to the Warkworth
arms; and they are so drawn in vol. I., p. 20, though the proper position
is sejant or couchant.

The argument of heraldry indicates that the Essex family migrated
to Hampshire and Somerset, as stated by The Norman People. Collln-
Bon (Hist, of Somerset) says: "About the time of Edw. I., another
family succeeded to the estate of Long Ashton of the name of Lions
or De Lions. Of this family was Nicholas de Lions, who in 1252 held
the office of Reeve of Bristol. His eldest son was William, who improved
the patrimonial estate by purchase from Agnes, widow of DeAlno,
and Wm. de Ashton. At his death 1312, he held a capital messuage,
the same in all probability that is still partly standing. By Maud, his
wife, he left issue, three sons, Adam, Thomas and Edmund. Adam de
Lions, b. 1287, lived only one year after the death of his father.
Thomas died 1328 without issue. Edmund, b. 1303, made a grant of
Stockeleigh to the Abbey of St. Augustine. He had lands in Kencot
also. He died 1367, leaving two sons; William and Thomas. Wm. died
without issue 1370. Thomas obtained a charter 1392 of free warren
and liberty to enclose a park in Long Ashton, which from this family
henceforth assumed the name Ashton-Lyons, and still dominates a
tithing in this parish. His wife's name was Margaret; he left no issue.
The church, dedicated to All Saints, was built by one of the Lyons,
and Thomas is buried there. The Lyon arms — ^those of Essex — are
cut in stone on the west end of the tower, and blazoned on the ceiling.

The Manor of Lyons Court at Filton still remains. It lies north-
ward from the village of Whitchurch, and belonged to a family distinct
from those of Ashton. As early as the 13th. century, they bore arms;
Arg. two lions rampant respecting sable [a variant of the Warkworth
arms]. They were retainers to the Abbots of Keynsham, from whom
they held their territory. From David de Lyons issued David; Robert;
Stephen; Ralph; Thomas and Roger, his brother who died without
issue; Thomas; Thomas and Nicholas; Richard (9th generation) left
no issue; his sister Edith m. Thomas Holbeach of Co. Lincoln. The
hamlet of Burton and Melton was held 1396 of the King in capite by
Thomas de Lyons. Edward was member of parliament 1336.

From Somerset they must have crossed into Ireland. O'Hart
claims an Irish origin for the family, deriving the name from O'Liathan,


the gray-haired. But as the family arms are those of Essex and
Somerset, and as Its most distinguished representative, the late Lord
Lyons, former British Minister at Washington, derives from Hamp-
shire, where Wm. de Lions was a witness 13th. century, it seems quite

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