This site is a work-in-progress. There is a massive amount to cover. I have included both male and female lines, and some go back 30 generations. Keep coming back for more.

I have numbered the generations working backwards from my own as (1)






Home button

Link to Children's Books

Link to Adult Fiction

Link to Non-Fiction


Fay Sampson Family History Link

Jack Priestley Family History Link




EARLY HAMLYNS . Early tax rolls show that the Hamlyns were a well-established family in Moretonhampstead from at least as early as the 16th century.

1524 Lay Subsidy assessments for tax, at rates rising from 4d in the £

Wages: £1 John Hamlyn, John Hamlyn

1544 Lay Subsidy – assessments for tax in the £

Value of Goods: £1 John Hamlyn, William Hamlyn

Wages or goods of £1 were the lowest at which tax was payable, but many were too poor to pay tax at all. This shows these Hamlyns to be neither among the richest nor the poorest in the parish.

1581 Lay Subsidy (Deliberately low assessments: minimum for Goods £3)

£2 William Hamlyn of Clifford, £1 William Hamlyn of Leyne.

The Moretonhampstead registers survive from 1603, when James I succeeded Queen Elizabeth. Hamlyns appear frequently from the start.

Just before the Civil War, the Protestation Return of 1641 shows five men of eighteen years or over named Hamlinge, Hamlin or Hamlyn in Moretonhampstead. They were John, Nicholas, Richard, Robert and William. This is probably two generations before our William.

By 1674, Richard Hamlyn with 3 hearths seems to occupy a substantial house.

1674 Hearth Tax Roll (2s p.a. per hearth, but poor exempt: many omissions due to illegibility)

Paying Hearths: 3 Richard Hamlyn, 1 John Hamlyn

A list of Tynners in 1691 shows Richard Hamilin, with six others, valued at £50 and responsible for supplying ‘one mans Armes’.

The relation between these Moretonhampstead Hamlyns and William has not yet been established. There were a much larger number of Hamlyns in Widecombe in the Moor, 25 of them at the Protestation Return, compared with 5 in Moreton.


WILLIAM HAMLYN. The only possible baptism for William in Moretonhampstead is the son of John Hamlyn and Joan Tozer , baptised on 13 May 1655 at the parish church.

He became a yeoman, or farmer, so it is likely he was from farming stock.

He is probably the same William Hamlyn who married Grace Tuckfield in 1681. William would have been a typical 26.

This couple had three children.

1681(2) February. Grace , who died in 1683.

1683 April. Joan , who died at 8 months.

1684 December. Jane.

Grace herself died in 1686.

ELIZABETH ADAMS The most likely baptism for Elizabeth is in Moretonhampstead in 1675.

Baptism. St Andrew, Moretonhampstead.

1675 Aug 1 Elizabeth daughter of Edward Addam

This would make her 20 at the time of her marriage.

She was the seventh of nine children of Edward Adams and Joane Coumb .



Marriage. Moretonhampstead, St Andrews. (DCRS transcript)

1695 Hamlin W m X Elizabeth Adams. 6 Aug.

They had a number of children baptised in Moreton.


Baptism. Moretonhampstead, St Andrews.

1697(8) February 20 was Baptized John sonne of Wiliam Hamlin

1699(1700) January 07 was Baptized Margarett daughter of W m Hamlin

1701 May 18 was Baptized Mary daughter of W m Hamlin

1702 March 14 was Baptized Elizabeth daughter of W m Hamlin

1707(8) Hamlyn, Grace d of William. 20 Jan

1710 Hamlyn, William s of William 14 May

1714(5) January 30 was Baptized Thomas Son of William Hamlyn


From William’s will, there appears to be another daughter, Sarah, whose baptism has not been found in Moreton, and a daughter Jane, who may possibly be the surviving daughter from William’s earlier marriage to Grace Tuckfield.

All these children survived infancy.


On 24 December 1719, William, ‘very sick and weak’, made his will. He is described as: ‘William Hamlyn the elder of Moreton hampstead, yeo.’ He bequeathed to his eldest son John, ‘all the right in the Copps belonging to the estate which I now occupy, called Willaway or North eastway’. This wording indicates that William had previously farmed elsewhere.

Lower Willowray is listed by English Heritage as a former farmhouse, 17 th century or earlier. It lies between Wray Barton and Moor Wood Cottage, on the Moreton to Bovey Tracey road. Not far on down the road the modern OS map shows East Wray. Willowray may well have been known once as North Eastwray.

The Hamlyns’ neighbours at Wray Barton were the Southmeads, a prominent family in Moreton’s history. Five generations later, Moorwood, on the other side of Willowray, was the last known address of Charlotte Lee and her husband Richard , an agricultural labourer, before they moved on to St Budeaux.

Most bequests were of money to William’s other children and grandchildren, including his daughter Elizabeth , wife of Richard Battshill . These sums amounted to £18.8s. The residue of the estate, including all his possessions, went to his widow Elizabeth .

William died a week or two later.

Burial. Moretonhampstead, St Andrews.

1719(20) January 5 was Buried William Hamlyn Sen r .

If we are right about his birth date, he was 64.


Elizabeth survived him by 25 years. She was 69 when she died.

Burial. Moretonhampstead, St Andrews.

1744/5 Jan 24 Elizabeth Hamlin




Next Generation: 8. BATTISHILL-HAMLYN

Previous Generations: 10. HAMLYN-TOZER

                                      10. ADAMS-COUMB