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| Created 11 Jul 2016 | Last significant change: 26 May 2020
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Wikitree Perrott One Name Study
MY PERROTT FAMILY TREE
The P*rr*tt Society is registered with the Guild of One-Name Genealogical Studies for those interested in the history of Perrotts, Perretts, Parrots, etc. The very knowledgeable volunteers who run it have done a fantastic job for over 30 years and I strongly recommend joining if you are connected.
My interest is the Perrotts of Wales, in particular Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire. The family's ancient origins, together with the spread of its many branches to all quarters of the globe, provide a fascinating story spanning almost two thousand years.
Walter Perrott of Laugharne
(c1690-1756) is my 6 x great-grandfather. He is the earliest confirmed ancestor we've found so far but there are plenty of promising possibilities yet to be explored. (If you are also interested in researching this family do get in touch via the message links above - genealogy on Wikitree is about collaboration!)
|Contemporary Woodcut of the Great Flood
In 1526 Laugharne was described as a "vyllage
" of 90 houses but after the 'Act of Union'
ten years later, it grew rapidly and by the late 16th
century was the sixth largest settlement in Wales with over 2000 inhabitants
, double those of today. Gosport Harbour
could shelter 350 ton vessels before it became progressively silted up and the capability to support navigation gradually diminished.
|Bristol Channel 9m water level in 1607
Nevertheless, the township continued to prosper
even despite the 'Great Flood'
Current Research: 17th Century Bibles in Africa & Australia
The Family Bible now in South Africa
Above is a Victorian copy of a 1781 manuscript entry in the family bible which was taken to Port Elizabeth, South Africa by Robert Rees Perrott
(1866-1938) when he emigrated from Llanelli in 1896. The extract records a dispute in 1755 about a pew in Laugharne church involving James Perrott
and is from a collection of family history documents written by Robert's sister, my great grandmother Emily Jane (Perrott) Lewis.
We have studied the bible first hand in Durban and found her transcriptions of the many handwritten entries to be meticulously accurate. It was printed in 1634 and purchased from William Skyrme
(a Portreeve of Laugharne) by Robert's great-grandfather Walter Perrott
in 1781 for the sum of 45s/6d, nearly £400 at today's prices.
In the margins of Psalm 28 he copied the account from his father's bible (with small but interesting changes
) that the disputed pew was "given to his Grandmother by Bishop Thomas when he was Vicar of Laugharne."
The identity of James' grandmother is currently uncertain
but she could be Darneline,
wife of John Perrott.
The Family Bible now in Australia
Victoria State Librarian's Report on the 1615 Perrott Family "Barker" Bible
The family bible owned by Walter's father James Perrott has fortunately also survived and is now in Australia. Its rich marginalia, as summarised above by a Victoria State librarian in 1983 has proved invaluable for our research. His description promised much: "Extensive genealogical notes on these and other members of the Perrott family of Boshaston
[sic], Pembrokeshire continue throughout the Psalms, from which it is likely a lengthy genealogy of the family could be constructed."
|Earliest 'Perrott' entry in the family bible now in Australia
The first Perrott ownership reference
to a Thomas in 1701 is particularly interesting.
He could be Thomas Perrott
of Laugharne or it is even possible he was Thomas Perrot of Llan-y-bri, the noted 18th
century Principal of Carmarthen Academy. (§ 2.3
|1755 Laugharne Vestry Book pew dispute record & corresponding family bible 'Noat'.
The 1760 date of Walter's "Stile" as copied in the extract shown above, is somewhat problematic given his age at that time. His father James may have drowned in 1757, which might explain the unusual pattern of early ownership. The "Walter his book 1750" inscription could be that of James' father Walter. He was a a mariner and died in 1756.
It seems the bible was passed down from Walter's youngest brother Thomas, Portreeve of Laugharne in 1792, via his brother David. His great-granddaughter Ada Richardson (1860-1959) took it to Melbourne from Bristol when she emigrated with her sister Ann aboard the RMS Carthage to Adelaide in 1889, shortly after their younger brother James.
In 2019 the owner of the Australian bible kindly made available digital surrogates of all the manuscript additions. These will enable new graphological comparisons with other known examples of Perrott family handwriting and hopefully those yet to be discovered!
Current Research: Quaker Connections
The Religious Society of Friends in West Wales
"In 1688 George Fox visited Carmarthen, which served as a rallying point for the Quakers of Swansea, Tenby, Haverfordwest, and other unspecified districts. His object was to have monthly meetings settled regularly in good order. The minutes of the meetings thus regulated by Fox have been carefully recorded and kept. Burial places were also secured, that of Laugharne being probably the earliest in date. Marriages were solemnised in Quaker form, witnessed by the 'joining together in the Lord' of John Bowen & Mary Anthony in John Rees' mansion in Llansadurnen in 1712. Not all the monthly meetings, not all the apparatus of a finely strung organisation, not all the piety and good works, availed to attach Carmarthenshire to the Quaker faith. There is no gainsaying the Churchwardens' reports. In 1684 they tell of a Quaker and his wife, both excommunicated at Laugharne, of a Quaker and his wife both excommunicated in Llanboidy, the James Thomas who was distrained for not paying tithes in that year; of James Price the giddy-brained at Myddfai, and two reputed Quakers at St Ishmaels." Dr Thomas Richards
|George Fox by S. Chinn
James & Mary (Stafford) Perrott - Quakers of Laugharne
In 1710 Edward Tenison's "Visitation of the Archdeaconry of Carmarthen"
reported: "The Quakers in Laugharne, who have continued ever since the reign of K. Charles II, are two families.
" According to a list of "Carmarthen Dissenters or Non-Conformists" 
one family may be that of a John Thomas. It is likely the other, recorded as of "Gilberts House
" in the 1695 register of Laugharne inhabitants, was that of Richard Stafford
the brother of Mary Stafford, wife of James Perrott
. James was brother to my direct ancestor Walter,
and both could be the children of John,
the youngest son of John Perrott
, possibly the son of Watkin Perrott
, all of Laugharne. This speculative link is set out in a Conjectural Pedigree at the end of § 1:4.
along with other potential connections.
1726 Lease for "Quakers Yard"
Above is the transcription of a 1726 title deed for the Cross Inn Quaker Burial Ground,
Laugharne purchased by Mary (nee Stafford), widow of James Perrott of the town. In 1742 Mary's nephew and devisee, John Stafford, leased land nearby, also formerly in her possession, for the erection of a Meeting House for The Religious Society of Friends. It was built, but then sold to "Storke of Laugharne for £80"
in 1824 and by 1905 no remains were visible.
The 1840 sketch below was described as the interior of the same building.
In 1827 Walter Perrott
(1744-1833), who is my direct ancestor, wrote the following letter about his grandfather's brother, James Perrott
(1674-1723), a Quaker of Laugharne. James' widow Mary (nee Stafford) had made lands over to the Society of Friends a century before and is the same person identified above in the lease of 1726. This is a significant discovery which takes my tree back a further generation.
Current Research: Laugharne Corporation Records
of Gold Cockleshells
Laugharne Corporation, led by its Portreeve (O.E. porta-gerafa)
was created by Charter at a turbulent time in Welsh history. In 1172 Henry II had held parley with Gruffydd Ap Rhys
at Laugharne Castle
. After his death in 1189, Rhys seized St. Clears, Llanstephan and Laugharne, but soon lost them again. In 1215 Llywelyn the Great renewed the offensive and destroyed all three strongholds.
|Llywelyn ap Gruffudd
The castle was regained for the king in 1223
by William Marshall
and subsequently rebuilt after 1247 by the de Brians
of Devon and Walwyn's Castle
, as the southernmost fortress of the Landsker line.
During 1258 Sir Guy IV was captured and ransomed when Llywelyn ap Gruffydd
, the last sovereign Prince of Wales, attacked towns and castles under Anglo-Norman control including Laugharne, which was again occupied and burnt.
His son and grandson each granted a Charter
to the burgesses of Laugharne in 1290 and 1307
The earliest records of the Courts Leet and Baron date from 1568: "The hundred of John Parrot, knight, held at the Guild Hall on 1st Oct 10 Elizabeth, before John Donn." Sir John Perrot
then held the Lordship at £80 per annum paid to the Earl of Pembroke before it was granted to him outright by Elizabeth 1 in 1575.
The Corporation History
also records: "In 1660, the year of the Restoration of the Stuarts, the Portreeve, John Perrott, leads the rejoicing at the end of the 'sequestrators tyranny' as the Burial Register puts it. He pays Sir Sackville Crow, Lord of the Manor, £2.16s for "an ox to roast at the celebrations". The Common Walk was celebrated in great style. He says "Paid for one barrel of beer and tobacco on the perambulation, 15s."
Walter Perrott's grandson Thomas
was also elected Portreeve by the Burgesses in 1792. He was a cordwainer of Roches Castle, (See Opp.) a property incorporating part of the medieval manor house
owned in 1594 by Sir Thomas Perrot
and adjacent to its ruins.
Thomas bequeathed the "whole right and title of Roches House"
to his brother Walter in 1815 and it was still occupied by family members in 1851.
This evidence confirms my direct ancestors as firmly established Laugharne residents from the end of the 17th
Further research in Laugharne Corporation's records of burgess admissions
may shed new light on our family connections when they are made available to the public again following the re-opening of Carmarthenshire Archive Service in their new premises.
Current Research: Brook, Laugharne & Surrounding Parishes
|Original Parish Boundaries & Brook House, Llanddowror - as it is today
(d.1560s) settled a cadet line of the armigerous family in Llansadurnen at Brook (aka Claymer
) now part of the civil parish of Llanddowror. Under a 1584 deed of settlement for the estates of his nephew, Sir John Perrot
, provision was made for John's son Thomas Perrot "late of Broke, Carms. gent.,"
the grandson of Sir Owen Perrot.
|Perrot Pembrokeshire Advenae in Golden Grove Book 1
In 1639 the Brook family was involved in a bitter case in the Earl Marshal's Court of Chivalry
. They challenged
the right to use the Coat of Arms by the Perrotts of Morton-on-Lugg after that branch inherited the estate of Sir John's illegitimate son, Sir James Perrot
of Westmead at Llanmiloe, 
ahead of them and his surviving grandson John Lacharne.
Among those who gave evidence for the plaintiff were his kinsfolk Lady Dorothy Mansell
and Thomas Palmer, both of Llansadurnen, together with Sir Henry Vaughan
, son of Sir Walter
of Golden Grove
, who,se collection of 'ancient pedigrees'
The lineal descent from Sir Owen of Thomas Perrot
( who was placed at the Inns of Court
by Sir James) was not disputed at the trial and is shown in his petition below:
- Sir Owen Perrot of Haroldston, co. Pembroke, knt, had four sons, Robert, Thomas, Rhys and John.
- Robert Perrot, the eldest son had no legitimate heirs.
- Thomas Perrot, second son had a son, Sir John Perrot [rest faded]
- Rhys Perrot, third son of had an illegitimate son named Rhys but no legitimate male heirs.
- John Perrot, fourth son had a legitimate son, Thomas Perrot of Brooke, co. Carmarthen.
- Thomas Perrot (b 1602) Esq of the City of London (the plaintiff) was the legitimate son of Thomas Perrot of Brooke, co. Carmarthen, gent, and so the male heir of Sir Owen Perrot.
A link between the Perrots of Brook and those of Llanybri (§ 2.3ii) has been suggested but is not supported by the records cited. Certainly both they and other related groups across the Tâf estuary in St Ishmaels and Kidwelly all existed from the late 15th century.
Four different branches of the family from that at Brook were settled in closer proximity. David Perrott (d. 1701) was the last known male of a separate line also in Llansadurnen. Amy Perrott, living in the nearby parish of Eglyws Cymmyn in 1699, was the widow of Lewis Perrott (d 1697), the eldest son of William Perrott of Llanfihangel Abercowin. Lewis and Amy had four children, William, James, John and Joseph, all still living in 1700 according to the will of Sarah Chapman, their stepsister. They may have continued the Perrott name in the locality but sadly the parish records before 1732 are mostly lost.
|Wm Perrott signatures
There is no decisive evidence yet that any of my direct ancestors had a connection with these groups. That said,
in Laugharne John Perrott (d 1675,)
Portreeve from 1658 to 1660, could well be the son of Watkin (Walter) Perrott (d 1629)
and his other son William, may be William of Llanfihangel Abercowin
( d.1681), as referenced above, whose signature, shown opposite, witnesses John's will.
With frequent outbreaks
of disease, especially smallpox, clearing the field of other suitable candidates, it is possible (but so far unproven) that my direct ancestor Walter
was the son of John Perrott
(b c1665) the son of John the Portreeve and Mary above.
If so, he may be a great grandson of Watkin of Laugharne, who was probably a brother or cousin to Griffith Perrott
of Llansadurnen. Both may well be descended from an earlier cadet line
of the Haroldston Perrots to that of the family that settled at Brook.
In the absence (to date) of a birth record, will reference or other direct evidence of his paternity, the conjectured relationship placing Walter as the son of John Perrott is supported, in addition to consistent dates and naming patterns, by the following :
As described in the pedigree extract above it seems very likely the 16th
century Perrotts of Laugharne and some of the other nearby parishes descend from William Perrott
of Tallacharn (c1480-1560), whose Inquisition Post Mortem
was conducted there in 1560.
He was almost certainly the great-grandson of Sir Thomas Perrot
(b Jestynton 1382 d Bristol 1461). If so, his father was John Perrot
of Haverfordwest (c1440-c1500), son of Thomas Perrot (1398-1474),
to whom his uncle Sir William Perrot
of Haroldston (1433-1503) granted power of attorney "for the Lordship of Laugharne"
on June 9th
Conjectural Pedigree for the Ps of Haroldston, Brook, Laugharne,
Llansadurnen, Llanfihangel Abercowin & Eglwys Cymmyn
Location of Early Perrot(t) Family Groups in South Carmarthenshire
A Brief History of the Perrots
Perrot Armorial Bearings
A parrot and three gold pears often feature in Coats of Arms associated with the family. The devices shown are of
Sir Stephen Perrot of Popton, Pembrokeshire 1338,
Sir Thomas Perrot's shield impaled with Picton c1430,
Sir John Perrot' s achievement in November 1549, and also
Sir Herbert Perrott of Morton in 1660.
Pictured above extreme right are the arms of James Perrott, quartered with those of his ancestors Sir Robert Jason and his wife Susan Lyon. For many years they were proudly displayed inside the front parlour of the noted Dartmoor guide's Chagford home.
Family Origins in Wales
"In South Wales there was a halt of some twelve years to the Norman conquest of the country, due to the recognition by William II of the claims of its king, Rhys ap Tewdwr, Hywel Dda's descendant, who had defeated his rivals at the Battle of Mynydd Carn in 1081. But on his death in 1093 all obstacles were removed; Glamorgan fell to Robert FitzHamon, Dyfed & Ceredigion to the House of Montgomery, Brecknock to Bernard of Neufmarche. All that was worth having went to French-speaking soldiers, from Monmouth to St. David’s; only the barren hills and remote wooded retreats were left to the country's ancient denizens. Such was the position in South Wales at the death of Henry 1 in 1135." Sir John Edward Lloyd
Intermarriage frequently occurred between the Norman-descended Marcher lords
and Welsh Ruling Houses.
The pedigrees of these bonheddig
familes, as set down by their arwyddvarrd
(herald bards), are based on oral traditions now considered to have significant historical value. They show the Perrot advenae
connection by marriage to a descendant of Hywel Dda
and back through him to his royal ancestors
of Cymry legend.
Hywel (c. 880–948), as grandson of Rhodri Mawr
, was a scion of the Royal House of Dinefwr
and Prince of Deheubarth
, who came to rule most of Wales. Recorded as King of the Britons in the Annales Cambriae
, the Senned
building is named Tŷ Hywel (Hywel's House)
in his honour. The Dinefwr dynasty ruled in Deheubarth until the final annexation of Wales
by Edward I in his campaign of 1283.
The name "le Pirot" occurs on the much disputed Battle Abbey Roll
of knights accompanying William I in 1066. The family are also listed in the Domesday Book as holding substantial tenures in 1086 and were well established in Kent by 1136. Even though Wales wasn't fully conquered until 1282, the early pedigrees
give Stephen Perrot
as the proband
in Pembrokeshire during the reign of Henry 1 (1100-35).
S.R.Meyrick's transcription (see Francis Jones' warning)
of Lewys Dwynn
below notes"for Syr Stephen Perott, the first Norman settler in Pembrokeshire, married Elen, daughter and co-heir of Meirchion ap Rhys
, ap Rydderch, ap Jestyn, ap Gwrgao, ap Hywel Dda, from which Jestyn this place received its name."
(See Opp.) The surviving membrane of a pedigree parchment dated 1633 of unknown origin.
Alongside the Perrots of Pembrokeshire from John (b c1270) to Sir William (b 1433) are the Phillips, Wogans and Fletchers, three other noble families also prominent in the area at that time.
From the 16th
century onwards pedigrees became increasingly detailed as they gained importance as warranties of property and inheritance.
The customary Welsh patronymic forms, usually without surnames, were gradually replaced by sophisticated heraldic tabular charts.
Ancient Bardic sources, on which the early history of many noble families relied, continued to be incorporated but often with creative embellishment. The 1848 edition of Burke still contained these imaginative constructions along with clear fabrications and was the subject of harsh contemporary criticism as a result. Its Perrot pedigree was memorably described in 1857 by Barnwell as "a tissue of mendacious absurdities."
The Perrot lineage in Wales is often uncertain, inconsistent and difficult to date accurately before the 1290s. Identifying later forgeries is clearly very important but modern historiography also takes full account of corroborating genealogies from early sources recording indigenous connections with the advenae. Pedigrees such as those of George Owen of Henllys and others in the 16th century, despite contradictions in chronology, preserve reliable traditions which provide valuable evidence for the intermarriage of the Perrots with the princely families of Wales during the 12th century.
"Who then were the Perrots?" asks Dr Roger Turvey - "The Perrots were a Pembrokeshire phenomenon and represent the classic tale of a family’s rise from obscurity to dominance in the space of two centuries. By the early 16th century they were powerfully planted in south-west Wales. At this time the family consisted of several branches settled [first at Jestyngton and later] at Scotsborough with its cadet at Tenby, Cheriton, Kidwelly, [Caerforiog, Oxford, Laugharne] and of course, the main line at Haroldston outside Haverfordwest. They were among the county’s largest landowners with estates scattered throughout the earldom and its constituent lordships. The family’s success was due to the hard work of talented individuals who ensured that each generation contributed something to enhancing their social, political and economic power."
Jestynton Pele Tower House, Angle Bay & Haroldston (Steward's Tower), Haverfordwest
Both early Perrot seats in Pembrokeshire
Sir John Perrot
Sir John Perrot
(1528-92), the most famous
of the Haroldston line, Lord Deputy of Ireland from 1584 to 1588.
A great Elizabethan from Pembrokeshire, now restored by modern scholarship to his rightful place in history
In 1589, soon after his return from Ireland, he was elevated to the Privy Council, but then suffered a spectacular downfall, being falsely charged with treason in 1590. Lord Burghley
masterminded a secretive, deadly attack on Perrot, in order to cover up the corrupt administration of Ireland after his departure by Burghley's late wife's cousin, William Fitzwilliam.
Tried and found guilty in April 1592, he was not executed but died in the Tower seven months later, probably poisoned by his enemies fearing a pardon.
"Perrot, who did not conform as other men do, has never failed to excite and interest those who have come across his life story, tragic though its end may be. He is an attractive and influential figure certainly to be counted among the dozen second rank of supporting actors on the Elizabethan stage. In Pembrokeshire and Wales he dominated; in Ireland he ruled; and in England and in Court, he competed, and it was here he lost. Today it is he who is remembered and not those anonymous few who brought him down." R.K. Turvey
Two later Ps were also prominent as Dissenters in the 17th and 18th century centuries.
John Perrot (c1610 -1665) was an early Quaker schismatic who set out to convert the Pope in 1658. He had a wife and children in Waterford but was later claimed by relatives to be a blacksmith born in Sedbergh.
He came to England after surviving three years imprisonment in Rome.
After a short period of preaching and a famous dispute with George Fox about wearing hats at prayer, he moved to Barbados in 1662 and later visited the Quakers of Virginia and Maryland. . His wife Elizabeth and two children joined him shortly before his death in Jamaica in 1665.
John's problematic orgins and amazing exploits were explored, albeit with somewhat questionable dramatic license, in an Irish TV programme broadcast in 2006.
Thomas Perrot (c1680-1733) Principal of Carmarthen Academy was another influential figure in a movement whose impact is often neglected by recent historians of the period.
Up to the 19th
the birthplace of Thomas, was a bond village called Morabri (Marblechurch). Before 1536 it was part of Cantref Gwarthaf
as a demesne manor of the Lordship of Llanstephan.
Thomas inherited property from his father John
in 1726. He belonged to a firmly rooted
Perrot family with branches settled first at Cydweli in the 15th
century and later across the former Dyfed commote of Penrhyn.
They may well have been a branch of the Scotsborough line.
Possibly descended from Thomas, a burgess of Kidwelly, who petitioned the Pope to marry in 1488, or his brother Robert. Jankyn Perrott
also appears as witness to a land grant at 'Morbilchurche' in 1534.
It's good to see these profiles now featuring in family trees across the internet but it doesn't help others if they are unattributed, not up to date or inaccurately altered. Do check here for new data as often as you can and please acknowledge this research when it is used. Society of Genealogists: Research Principles
SOURCES & RESEARCH NOTES
- ↑ Carmarthen Antiquary. Vol 2. 1945 p.157
- ↑ History of Laugharne Corporation: Charter & Portreeves by E.V.Williams 1967
- ↑ Historic Camarthenshire Homes & Their Families by Francis Jones (1967)
- ↑ Gatepost corbel from Laugharne Castle, now at the Bishop's Palace, Abergwili
- ↑ Spriggs MSS 1/18 (1868): MS Vol 156 Friends House Library, London.
- ↑ "John Perrot :Early Quaker Schismatic" by K.L. Carroll Ch. V (F.H.S.1971)
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Rees at registration
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