Lye families from Somerset
William Lye was my 3x great grandfather. I am in contact with several others who are descended from people shown here and we are each researching our respective lines. We have found several Lye families in the same area, the tantalising prospect is to find a connection between them.
We also have an interesting puzzle as to why the name Lye has got transcribed to Leigh or Ley on many records.
These are most of the people we know about who are now deceased. The data
we have includes some more information about them, and about some of their
descendants who are still living.
If you have knowledge of any of these people, their descendants, or their predecessors, we would love to hear from you.
William Lye (c1780-1850) married Elizabeth (c1780-1875) and lived
in Ston Easton, Somerset.
They had lots of children
Richard Lye (c1805 - 1874) married Joanne Cox (c1800 - 1879
alternative name spellings Joana, Joanna and Coxe). More about
Joanne's family below.
Richard & Joanna Lye's children were:
- Ann Lye (c1829) who married George Stock
- William Lye (c1831)
John Lye (c1833 Ston Easton) who married Mary Ann Powell
(c1839-1900). They lived in Ebbw Vale / Tredegar, Wales, and had children
- David John Lye (1860)
- Thomas Lye (1862). Thomas may have emigrated to the USA and had a son Harry (b 1892 Ohio, America)
- Elizabeth Jane Lye (c1868)
- John Lye (1870)
From about 1870 they seem to have adopted the surname Leigh, thus: John Leigh, Mary Ann Leigh, David John Leigh, Thomas Leigh, Elizabeth Jane Leigh, John Leigh and grandson Harry Leigh.
Charles Lye (c1836 Ston Easton) who married Emma Harrington
(c1839). Their children were
- Elsie Elizabeth Lye (c1866) who married m John Stuart Flack in 1899 and had Frederick C Flack (1900)
- Annie Kate Lye (c1867)
- Lucretia Amy Lye (c1873) who married m Harry Gilbert in 1894 and had Ruby Gilbert
- Florence Emily Lye (c1875)
- Eva C Lye (c1878)
- Frederick Lye (c1884)
- Beatrice Lye (c1887)
Edward Lye (c1838 Ston Easton) who married Anna Maggs (c 1834
Ston Easton) in 1859. Edward and Anna Lye had at least
- Edward Charles Lye (c1860-1862)
- Eliza A Lye (b 1861/2 Farrington Gurney) One of several who called herself Leigh in later life. She probably married John T Davies and had daughters Mabel M Davies (c1878) and Mary L Davies (c1878)
- Elizabeth Lye (b 1864/5 Farrington Gurney)
- John Lye (b1867/8 Clapton)
Robert Lye (b 1871 Clapton d 1947) married Mary Jane Flower
Kerton in 1873. Their children include:
- Edward Lye (b 1893/4 Shepton Mallet)
Elizabeth Ada Lye (b 1895/6 Paulton) married Samuel Barton
(b c1898). One child:
- Doris Barton (1919 Midsomer Norton -1999) m Frank Alexander (1898-1984). Known descendents living.
- Florence Mable Lye (b 1896 Paulton) married Fred Filer in 1916. Known descendents living.
- Robert John Lye (b 1898 Paulton) married Sophia Elizabeth Hall in 1924. Known descendents living.
- Albert Victor Lye (b: c1901 in Welton)
- Ella Dorothy Lye (b: c1902 in Welton)
- Percy Reginald Wilfred Lye (b: c1908 in Midsomer Norton)
- Bessie Margaret Mary Lye (b: c1909 in Midsomer Norton)
- Sam Lye (b: c1911 in Midsomer Norton)
- Christopher Theodore Stanley Lye (b: c1912 in Midsomer Norton - 1980)
- Edna Violet Lye (b c 1915)
- Evelyn Maud Lye (1916 -1921)
- James Lye (c1840) married Wyndham Chapman (c1834) in 1857.
Thomas Lye (1842/3 Stone Easton), an agricultural labourer, married
Frances Elizabeth Hill (1841/2 Ashwick, Somerset) in 1863. More
about her pedigree below.
Their children appear to have been
- Ellen Lye (c1863) who seems to have spent her life in domestic service.
Mary Ann Lye (c1865 Midsomer Norton). Mary married George Field
(c1865, son of Joseph Field and Matilda Pointing) in 1887
in Bath and had children
- Amy Frances Mary Field (c1889)
- Ernest George Field (1891)
- Edna Agnes Emily Field (c1894)
- Reginald H Field (c1898)
William Henry Lye (1866 Midsomer Norton, Somerset) married Annie
Nora K Dawes (1861-1932, nee Trott) in 1888. Their children
- Philip William Dawes (c1886 Birmingham) [also known as Philip Lye and William Lye] - step child by Annie's first husband Francis Dawes
- Henry Lye (1889 Binegar, Somerset - 1923) married Annie Evans in 1915
- Ellen Ethel Lye (1891 Clutton, Somerset - 1963) who married m Henry John Pow / Padfield in 1914 and had several children.
- Agnes Vera Lye (1893 Clutton - 1969) married Frederick G Filer in 1912 and had several children.
- Dorothy Nora Lye (1895 Clutton - 1974) married Albert Spencer in 1916.
- Edna Gertrude Lye (1897 Clutton - 1973) married Herbert Stevens in 1918
- Gladys Marian Lye (1900 High Littleton, Somerset - 1981) who married Albert Ernest John Treasure (b1897, son of James Treasure and Eliza Holbrook) in 1925 and had 2 children
- Albert James Lye (1867/8 Midsomer Norton, Somerset) who emigrated to USA
- Emily Jane Lye (1870/1 Midsomer Norton d 1935) married Ralph Hayes in 1897
Alice Lye (1872/3 Midsomer Norton) married Thomas McCarthy
and had two children:
- Laurence Lye (1898-1975) married Alice Jones (b Merthyr Tydfil) known descendants living
- Edward Lye
- Agnes Elizabeth Lye (1875 Ston Easton - 1909) married Thomas Bartlett (1872 - 1947) known descendants living
- Rosena Lye (1876/7 Midsomer Norton) also recorded as Rose and Rosana
- Frances Harriet Lye (1877/8 Midsomer Norton)
- Frederick Lye (1879/80 Stone Easton, Somerset,
- Lily Blanche Lye (c1883 Binegar - 1957) married Daniel Morris (from Antigua), Known descendants living
- Harvey Richard Lye (Harve) (1886. Birth registered as Harvey Ely) married (1) Eliza May Cross in 1923 (2) Mabel Emma Tabor in 1939.
- Ivy Annie Lye (c1893-1968) who married Hugh Tawton Neagle (c1889-1930, son of David Thomas Neagle)
- Harriet Lye (c1806)
Ann Lye (c1810) who married Walter Frapwell (c1807 Kilmersdon,
Somerset) in Jul 1832.
Walter and Ann Frapwell's children were (known descendants living)
- George Frapwell (c1834)
- James Frapwell (c1836)
- Amelia Frapwell (1838-1844).
Alternative spellings encountered include Frappel and Frapswell. Known descendants living
- Louiza Lye (1810)
- John Lye (1812-1813)
James Lye (c1815 Ston Easton -1884) married Frances Jane Emery
(c1818 Ston Easton).
Jane, who seems to have been known by all possible combinations of her Christian names, was the daughter of Thomas Emery (b c1791) and Leah Boulton (b c1795) who had married in 1816. Thomas and Leah's other children were Sarah Emery (bap1821), Jeremiah Emery (bap 1824), George Emery (c1828), William Emery (c1831), Tom Emery (bap 1834) and Elijah Emery (bap1834).
James and Frances Lye's children were:
- Harriett Lye (1838/9)
- Elizabeth Lye (1843/4) married Robert Jones (1840-1923) in 1863
- James Lye (1848-1850)
Frances Ellen Lye (1850) who married William Watson (c1850)
in 1873 and had children
- Florence L Watson (1876/7)
- Elsie E Watson (1877/8 )
- Oliver William Watson (1880)
- Alfred James Lye (1853-1855)
- Alfred C Lye (1855/6)
- William Mark Lye (1857-1858)
- William Simeon Lye (1858/9 )
- Elizabeth Lye (c1817)
- Mary Lye (c1821)
Sarah Lye (c1821 in Ston Easton) married William Gait (c1819
in Chewton Mendip) in 1842.
It seems fairly likely that Sarah fits in here but no positive evidence has yet been found.
Caroline Lye (c1825) who married Thomas Gait (c1820) and had
children all born in Ston Easton:
- Emily Gait (c1855)
- Edwin Charles Gait (c1858)
- Charlotte Gait (c1853)
- Harriet Gait (c1859)
Could it be that sisters Caroline & Sarah married two brothers?
- Richard Lye (c1805 - 1874) married Joanne Cox (c1800 - 1879 alternative name spellings Joana, Joanna and Coxe). More about Joanne's family below.
Robert Lye (1796-1877) m Sara (c1800) and had children
- Elizabeth (c1826)
- Ellen (c1830 - 1878)
- Henry (c1830) who had children Henry G (c1859), Charles W (c1861), Edith K (c1862) and Agnes (c1864). Both sons emigrated to Canada, Henry had no children, Charles had 10, known descendents living.
We don't think that this Robert Lye is related to our family.
Members of the Lye families seem to have moved about in Somerset but within a small area until they started to move well away. Places include: Ashwick, Ston Easton, Emborough, Harrington, Chilcompton, Everscreeck, Clutton, Midsomer Norton
Joan, living in Australia, identifies these Lye famly members from Somerset.
Robert has made transcriptions of Butleigh Parish Records and other records available online. (9/12/08)
Richard Lye (b abt1786) m Elizabeth (b abt1786)
Son Frederick Lye (b abt 1823), a carpenter, m Elizabeth Blake
They lived in Butleigh (near Glastonbury, Somerset) prior to emigrating to Australia.
- Their children were Richard Lye, Ellen Lye (b abt1850), Emmily Lye and Francis Lye.
- Son Frederick Lye (b abt 1823), a carpenter, m Elizabeth Blake
About some of the marriage partners
Benjamin Cox married Susanna Roseworthy in Everscreech on 16 Nov 1790. Their children were Edward Cox (bap 1791), Edmund Cox (bap 1793), Mary Cox (bap 1795) who married James York (1791 - abt 1850's) in Wells in 1845, and Joanna Cox (bap 1798) who married Richard Lye .
Isaac Emery married Rebecca. Their children were Benjamin Emery (bap 1741), Joseph Emery (bap 1741) and Isaac Emery (bap 1743)
- Isaac (1743) married Mary Stock in Dec 1765 and had children Isaac Emery (bap 1771), Phillip Emery (bap 1773) who married Fanny, John Emery (bap 1777) and Leah Emery (bap 1779)
- Phillip (1773) married Fanny and they had children: Philip Emery (bap 1795), Fanny Emery (bap 1797), Leah Emery (bap 1803), Henry Emery (b c1806-1860) and John Emery (1808)
Henry Emery married Mary Hill (c1805 - 1877, the daughter of Richard
& Grace Hill) in 1856 - after they had had their children Henry Hill
(b c1832), Frances Elizabeth Hill (1840 and who married Thomas Lye), Harriet
Hill (b c1844) and Ellen Hill (b c1847).
Prior to her marriage, Mary Hill and her children had adopted the use of the surname Emery and so also appear in various records as Mary Emery, Henry Emery, Frances Elizabeth Emery (a.k.a. Elizabeth Frances Emery & Fanny Emery), Harriet Emery and Ellen Emery. When married she sometimes used the name Fanny Lye.
Thomas Bartlett and Agnes Lye had both moved to Glamorgan, South Wales by the time of their marriage and lived in Penrhiwceiber and Penygreig. Agnes died in childbirth and Emily moved into her brother-in-law's household to bring up the family. Thomas Bartlett and Emily later moved to Weybridge, Surrey with two of their children.
Lye, Leigh or Ley?
On a surprising number of records (census, registrations, etc) the surname has been spelt Leigh. This has not only occurred in Somerset but on Lily Lye's marriage registration in London. It has been suggested that the explanation is that many members of the family did not like the name Lye for its connotation in its spoken form with untruth and so chose to use a varient. Other examples such as Ley and Lee may be mis-spelling by clerks.
Similarly the name Emery has been found to have been spelled Emory, Emary and Emarry on some old parish records - particularly for Isaac and Mary.