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Fay Sampson’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 30 generations. Keep coming back for more.
I have numbered the generations working backwards from my own as (1)

Sampson  Tree



ROGER DE FERRERS. The Ferrers of Bere Ferrers and Churston Ferrers in Devon are believed to be descended from Roger de Ferrers, who was born before 1091 in Ferrières, Manche, Normandy.[1]

Ferrières, now merged with Teilleul, stands at the foot of the Cherbourg Peninsula. It is 8 miles south of the town of Mortain.

Église Saint Siméon le Stylite, Ferrières [2]

We have no information about his parents or his wife.

The earliest mention of him comes in The Ecclesiastical History of England and Normandy, written in the 12th century by the English chronicler and Benedictine monk, Ordericus Vitalis. [3]

In this, he recounts the Barons Wars in Normandy, under Duke Robert. For 1089-91, he tells us:

“Duke Robert frequently employed in his wars Gilbert, son of Ingenulf de Laigle, on account of his great bravery… As Gilbert, the knight just named, was returning from Ste Scholasse, he halted at Moulins, to converse with Duda, the lady of that castle. After their conference, he chanced to leave his armour there with one Antony, named Haren, and towards evening, thus unarmed, departed in haste, attended by his squires. He was instantly pursued by Gerard Breteuil and Roger de Ferrers, with some men-at-arms of the Corbonnais to the number of near thirteen, who endeavoured to take him alive. He spurred his horse to a gallop, but while endeavouring by his speed to get away from his enemies, he was struck in the side by one of their spears, and the noble knight died the same day, to the great grief of those by whose hands he fell. . On the morrow… his corpse was carried to St Sulpice, and there amid universal sorrow buried by the side of his parents.

“Geoffrey, count de Mortagne, reflecting that his vassals who had perpetrated this foul deed had sown the seed of infinite mischief to his territories by the murder of the brave baron, accommodated matters with his nephew Gilbert de Laigle by giving him his daughter Juliana in marriage”.


Ordericus Vitalis describes Geoffrey, count de Mortagne, Roger’s overlord, as: “In time of peace he was gentle and lovable and conspicuous for his good manners; in times of war, harsh and successful, formidable to the rulers who were his neighbours and an enemy to all.”

Count Geoffrey took part in the conquest of England in 1066, and was rewarded with land there. We do not know whether Roger de Ferrers also fought at Hastings. Given the dates of his descendants, he was probably too young, or not even born.


In 1112 Roger de Ferrariis occurs among the witnesses ‘de valle Moritonii’ when Henry I of France confirmed the  charter for the abbey of Savigny.


Roger is believed to be the father or grandfather of Ralph de Ferrers, thought to have been born around 1135. Since Roger was of fighting age in 1091, the latter seems more likely.


Ralph was the first of that name to settle in Devon.  He was first recorded there in 1168.




[1] Lewis C Loyd, The Origins of Some Anglo-Norman Families, 1999.
[2] Wikimedia.
[3] Ordericus Vitalis, The Ecclesiastical History of England and Normandy. Vol 2. Tr. T Forester, 1856.




Sampson Tree