Sir William de Montfort is a descendant of Robert FitzWalter (see text below).
William de Montfort was the son of Sir Baldwin de Montfort and Margaret de Clinton. He was of age in 1396, pointing to a likely birth date of about 1375. His birthplace is unknown: his father held lands in Berkshire and Warwickshire, so it may well have been in one of those counties.
In 1415 William was given letters of protection to go to France and he was probably in Normandy with his cousin Richard de Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick during the English conquest of Normandy following the Battle of Agincourt. William served as steward of the household of Richard de Beauchamp in 1417-8. In 1417 he entrusted his estates to trustees as he was about to go to France. In the trust deed he is described as an Esquire, but he was subsequently knighted, probably in France and probably by Richard de Beauchamp, and certainly by 1419: he is described as a knight in documents relating to Coleshill, Warwickshire from 1419 onwards.
William's connection with Richard de Beauchamp was close for many years, and he was entrusted with looking after substantial estates of Richard's. When Richard died in 1439, William was appointed one of the trustees who looked after his estates during the minority of his heir. Richard's second wife, Isabel le Despenser, died near the end of 1439, and named William as executor of her will.
In 1422 William returned from France to England, where he took an active part in local affairs, mainly in Warwickshire. He represented Warwickshire in Parliament as Knight of the Shire in 1410, 1422, 1423, 1427, 1429, 1437, 1445 and 1450. In 1422 he was made a Justice of the Peace for Warwickshire.
William was Deputy Sheriff of Worcestershire in 1423-4 and 1440-1.
In 1430 William became a "King's Knight", committing himself to serve for a year in France with 40 men.
In 1435, in his role as Justice of the Peace, nine Oxford scholars were brought before him, accused of ambushing him and trying to kill him: the case was transferred to the Court of the King's bench.
In 1437 William was again in France, serving as lieutenant (then a senior military position). He was Captain of Honfleur, Normandy for a period the following year.
In 1443 William was granted exemption from being made to hold official offices against his will. He still retained powerful connections: in 1450 Humphrey Stafford, Duke of Buckingham, put his name forward as a candidate to become a Knight of the Garter, though nothing came of this.
In about 1394 William's older brother John died, leaving William as his heir. As a result, he held lands in Warwickshire and Berkshire, and his first marriage brought him further lands in Warwickshire and Oxfordshire. In 1436 he was assessed for £258 in tax for his Warwickshire lands, the highest figure for any knight in the county, showing the extent of his estates there.
William married twice. His first wife was Margaret Pecche, posthumous daughter, and joint heir, of Sir John Pecche and Katherine. They married before 1407. They had the following children:
Sir William de Montfort died on 6 December 1452. He was buried at Aldridge, Staffordshire. His will was dated 10 November 1451, and showed a strong preference for Edmund, his son by his second marriage, to the disadvantage of Baldwin, son by his first marriage. This preference led to considerable trouble between Edmund and Baldwin in the 1450s. William's second wife Joan survived him - she is recorded as living in 1454.
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William is 20 degrees from Marie Curie, 33 degrees from Svante Arrhenius, 21 degrees from George Beadle, 24 degrees from Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, 21 degrees from Lawrence Bragg, 20 degrees from Pearl S. Buck, 20 degrees from Sinclair Lewis, 16 degrees from Guglielmo Marconi, 20 degrees from Albert Michelson, 23 degrees from Gerty Cori, 19 degrees from Roger Sperry and 23 degrees from Chris Ferraiolo on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.
Categories: FitzWalter-101 Descendants | Members of Parliament, Warwickshire | Members of Parliament, England 1410 | Members of Parliament, England 1422 | Members of Parliament, England 1423 | Members of Parliament, England 1427 | Members of Parliament, England 1429 | Members of Parliament, England 1437 | Members of Parliament, England 1445 | Members of Parliament, England 1450 | Magna Carta