Alan March’s Family History
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 many generations. Keep coming back for more.
I have numbered the generations working backwards from Alan’s as (1)
WILLIAM MARCH and ELIZABETH REEVES/REPUS (9)
WILLIAM MARCH. We have a succession of William Marches in West Sussex, and there were others in the Billingshurst area.
We believe the father of William March who married Sara Greenfield in 1738 to be an older William March, who married Elizabeth Repus/Reeves in 1702. Since they raised their family in Billingshurst, it is likely that the older William was born in or near it. We would estimate a birth date around 1677.
A promising candidate is the William March baptised in Wisborough Green, 3 m west of Billingshurst, in 1675/6.
Baptism. Wisborough Green.
1675/6 Jan 11 William son of William and Joan March
His mother was Joan Rason, resident in Stopham, further south, at the time of her marriage.
William was the middle of three children and the elder son.
We are fortunate that the baptismal record tells us his occupation. He became a husbandman, farming a small plot of land.
ELIZABETH REEVES/REPUS. The transcripts of their marriage give Elizabeth’s surname once as Repus and once as Reevs. We have not found a baptism for her under either name.
The fact that the wedding took place in Stopham suggests that Elizabeth was living there then. Stopham is a village 5 m south of Wisborough Green.
1702 Jul 11 William March and Elizabeth Repus/Reeves.
This was the year that Queen Anne came to the throne. She was the last of the Stuart monarchs.
There are only two baptismal records for this couple which record the parish where they took place. Both are in Billingshurst.
1703 Apr 25 Mary daughter of William March husbandman
1706 May 12 William son of William March husbandman
The Sussex baptism index gives three other children of William and Elizabeth March, but does not name the parish, so we cannot be sure that this is the same couple. The dates of the second and third would be consistent, but the first is rather close to Mary’s baptism.
1702 Oct 2 Elizabeth daughter of William and Elizabeth March
1707/8 Jan 9 John.
1709 Dec 10 Thomas
There are two further baptisms for children of William March, which do not name either the parish or the mother. Again, these would follow naturally after William’s baptism.
1711/2 Jan 27 Mary
1714 Jun 13 Lawrence
The picture will become clearer when we have access to the Sussex registers.
Billingshurst is situated in the Low Weald, 7 m SW of Horsham. St Mary’s church stands on a prominent site overlooking the village.
The soil of the Weald is mostly unsuitable for arable farming, being either sticky clay or drought-prone acid sands. The pattern has always been pastoral or mixed farming. William’s small farm would mostly have been raising animals, and perhaps growing food for his family.
There are burials for Elizabeth and William in Billingshurst in 1741 and 1756 respectively.
1741 July 26 Elizabeth March
1756/7 Jan 25 William March
William would have been 81.
 Sussex Parish Churches
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