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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)

Cory Tree



RICHARD CORY was born in Newton Pagnell and baptised in Milton Keynes on 2 Nov 1784. He was the eldest son of Arthur Corey and Elizabeth Wanstall, or Wastell.

He married in Deal in 1807,

This raises the question of why a young man would move from Bucks to Kent around 1800.
There is a family tradition that Richard was a gardener at Walmer Castle, a mile from Deal, and that his portrait hung in the castle.
Richard was certainly a gardener, and between 1802 and 1806, William Pitt the Younger, who was governor of Walmer Castle, did extensive work developing the gardens there.
There is a more obvious connection with Deal Castle. Lord Carrington, who had an estate in Newport Pagnell, was appointed governor of Deal Castle in 1802. There was intense rivalry between Pitt and Carrington over the development of their respective gardens. If Richard had worked for Carrington in Newport Pagnell, he may have had a particular expertise that Carrington wanted to use for the Captain’s Garden at Deal.
It may be that the family story is wrong, and that it was Deal Castle, not Walmer. Or Pitt may have poached Richard to join his staff at Walmer.

Walmer Castle and gardens

His eldest son is the first Cory baptism in the Deal registers.

His mother Elizabeth Wanstall may also have had a connection with Kent. There were Wanstalls in Deal from at least 1768.

After he left, Richard’s parents remained in Buckinghamshire until they died.


Richard was 23 when he married his first wife, Ann Amess, in Deal. This was in the second half of the reign of George III.

Deal Marriages
1807  18 Apr  Richard Cory, bachelor of this parish, and Ann Amess, spinster of this parish, by Banns.
Witnesses: Richard Piper, Mary Amess

Both bride and groom were able to sign their own names.[2]

Ann already had an illegitimate son, Henry Amess, baptised 12 Sep 1806 in Deal. Whether Richard was the father is a matter for conjecture, though if he were we might have expected them to marry sooner. Henry was raised in the Cory household.[3]

The couple’s son Richard was baptised in Deal on 8 May 1808. There was also a daughter Sarah, born 1810, who died in 1814.

On 20 February 1812 John Corey was made a freeman of Deal, so by then Richard was not the only man there of that surname.

Ann died in 1819.
The following year Richard took a second wife, Ann Langley.


ANN LANGLEY was christened in the parish of St Leonard’s, Deal, on 14 May 1797, the daughter of the boatbuilder Morris Langley and Mary Clayson. She was thus thirteen years younger than the widower Richard.
   She had an older sister baptised in Deal.


Their marriage took place in 1820.

Deal Marriages
1820  12 Sep  Richard Cory, widower of this parish, and Ann Langley, spinster of this parish, by Banns.
Witnesses: Thomas Langley, Mary Price

Thomas Langley’s relationship to Ann is not known. He could be an unknown brother or uncle. The 1801 census says there were three males living in her family at the time.

Ann Langley, like Richard’s first wife Ann Amess, signed her own name.

Richard junior, the only child of Richard’s first marriage, would have been 12. There is no evidence yet of whether he lived with his father and stepmother after the marriage. He may already have been out at work.

In the 1821 census the following year, Richard is recorded as a ‘victualler’, licensee of the Noah’s Ark Inn in Ark Lane. The house had a rateable value of £6, the stables and sheds £1.10s and the land £4.15s. The address of the pub is sometimes given as Peter Street. It probably occupied a corner site.
The pub was an old one. Noah’s Ark is included in a list of Deal inns in 1680. In the 18th century, in the heyday of the Deal smugglers, contraband goods were landed by luggers and then taken inland by horsemen. Noah’s Ark was one of the two inns they used to stable their horses. It was ‘situated amid fields and gardens in the rear of the town’.
Richard may have worked as a gardener, with Ann helping to run the pub.
The family were living at the Noah’s Ark for the births of the first five children.

Baptisms. Deal.
1821  27 Jul  John Langley CORY  son o f Richard & Ann. Noah’s Ark Lane.  Victualler
1822  18 Oct  Morris Clayson CORY  son of Richard & Ann. Ark Lane. Victualler
This first Morris Clayson died aged six, on 5 Nov 1928.[4]
1824  4 Aug  Henry Morris CORY  son of Richard & Ann. Noah’s Ark Lane. Victualler
1826  2 Jun  Mary Ann Langley CORY  daughter of Richard & Ann. Noah’s Ark Lane. Victualler

1828  5 Mar  Jane CORY  daughter of Richard & Ann. Peter Street. Victualler.

But the following year the family have moved to Fosters Alley and Richard is now a labourer, a step down in the social scale.

1829  11 Dec  Morris Clayson CORY  son of Richard & Ann. Foster’s Alley. Labourer.

The names of these children draw heavily on those of Ann’s family, rather than Richard’s. This may reflect the Langleys higher social status. Ann’s mother was descended from a family of gentlemen. Morris Langley was a boatbuilder with his own yard. The naming of children can be used to flatter relatives, in the hope of an inheritance. Not all the Claysons were well-to-do, however. In 1814 36-yer-old John Clayson died in the Poor House.

Richard junior, son of Richard Cory and his first wife Ann Amess, was by now a labourer too. He was living in Lower Street in 1830, when he had his own son Richard baptised. Richard and Ann, with their growing family, moved to the same street, and now Richard senior is recorded as having another occupation.

1832  25 Mar  Thomas William CORY  son of Richard & Ann. Lower Street. Gardener.
Lower Street is now the High Street.

For the rest of his life, Richard remained a gardener. It may be that during his years at the Noah’s Ark Inn, ‘situated amid fields and gardens’, he had worked at horticulture to supplement his income as a publican.
Richard is listed as a gardener in a Kelly’s directory.

The family was still living in Lower Street when the next three daughters were born.
1836  19 Oct  Henrietta COREY  d. of Richard & Ann.  Lower St.  Gardener
1839 May 22 Sarah Brice Cory d. of Richard & Ann.  Lower St.  Labourer.

1841 Jun 22  Julia Cory d. of Richard & Ann.  North End. Lower St.  Labourer.

In the last two baptisms Richard is said to be a labourer, but in the 1841 census he is still a gardener.

In this Census the family were living at the same address.
1841 Census. Deal. Lower Street
Richard Corey
     55    Gardener          Y
Ann            do        45                               Y
Mary          do        15                               Y
Henry        do        14                               Y
Jane Coery           13                               Y
Mary           do      11                               Y
Thomas       do      9                                Y
Henneretta do      5                                Y
Sarah           do      2                                Y
Julia             do     3 mths                       Y

Y means born in Kent. Richard’s entry should be N for No.

Julia lived only 6 months. She was buried on 14 Nov 1841, while the family were still living at North End, Lower Street.

In 1844 their son John married Elizabeth Murray Norris in Deal. He died in 1909 at Bridge in Kent.[5]

It was either Richard or his eldest son who was brought to court in 1846.

Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser. 4 April 1846


On Monday last Richard Cory was brought before the magistrates, charged with having in his possession a quantity of brocoli, stolen from a field belonging to Mr. J. Brown. The property, it appears, was discovered on the premises of Cory, by a son of the complainant, Cory, in his defence, disclaimed all knowledge of the matter, as regarded the mysterious disappearance or flight of the greens from the field, and their settlement on his premises. The magistrates, however, not being exactly convinced that this was the fact, fined Cory 4s., which, added to costs, &c., amounted to 16s. 8d. We understand the amount was paid. 

In 1890, nineteen years after Richard senior’s death, there was a similar case where Richard Revel was accused of stealing broccoli from a neighbouring allotment. He was acquitted on the evidence of Richard Cory. This is likely to be Richard senior’s son.

From the quantities involved, it appears that broccoli played a significant part in market gardening at the time.

In 1848, Morris married Elizabeth Thompson in Deal.[6]

In 1849, Ann’s third cousin Thomas Clayson Mourilyan, died. He had been born in Prospect Place, Deal, where Lord Carrington had once owned property. His father, and probably Thomas himself, was a gentleman. After his death, an imposter stole his identity. The man posed as a doctor and delivered a child. He was later prosecuted for identity theft and the case was reported in the newspapers.[7]

In 1851 the family were living in Alfred Square. Richard’s birthplace is given as Newport Pagnell.

1851 Census. Deal. 17 Alfred Square
Richard Cory      Head      Mar      65      Agr Labourer         Bucks, Newport
Ann          do         Wife       Mar      53                                        Kent, Deal
Henrietta  do        Daur                    14                                         Kent, Deal
Sarah B    do          Daur                    11                                        Kent, Deal
William Kennett   Visitor    U           78      Boat Builder            Kent, Dover
Thomas Carr        Visitor    U           63      Mariner                   Kent, Deal
William Smellar    Visitor    U           37      Mariner                   Kent, Deal

The three men may have been visitors in the social sense, it is more likely that they were lodgers. In the 1851 census, William Smellar has moved with Richard and Ann and is listed as a boarder.

The eldest son, John Langley Cory, followed his father’s early career as a publican and became the licensee of the Deal Hoy in Duke Street.

In 1857, Thomas William married Elizabeth Ann May.
On 19 Jan 1848, Henrietta married Edward Penn.

Morris Clayson Cory emigrated to New Zealand in 1858. He died two years later, on 6 Oct 1860, during a rescue attempt in the finest tradition of Deal boatmen.

One day October, 1860, a small schooner was seen to be in difficulties off Timaru, but a strong S.S.W. gale sprang up with such a heavy sea that no boat could be launched that night, and the boatmen had to content themselves with burning flares. Next morning, the Deal men attempted to launch a lifeboat, but were beaten back owing to the lack of experienced helpers. Next day they launched a little boat with two oars, and attempted to reach the schooner. Soon, however, they shipped a sea, and then a large wave capsized them. Of the five men in the boat Bowles and Roberts were dashed up by the waves and saved. Cory sank at once. Bowbyes clung to an oar for some time, but sank from exhaustion, while Foster, after clinging to the overturned boat for three-quarters of an hour, was washed off and cast alive on shore. (Laker’s History of Deal) [8]

When Richard and Ann’s daughter Henrietta married the boatman Edward Penn in 1858, the Cory family were still living in Alfred Square. By 1861, with all the children now adults, the 76-year-old Richard was still at work, and once more described as a gardener, but he and his wife Ann had moved in with Henrietta and her family in Chapel Street. This time his birthplace is given as Milton Keynes.

1861 Census. Deal. 192 Chapel Street
Edward Penn        Head                  Mar   28    Boatman               Kent, Deal
Henrietta Penn     Wife                   Mar   24    Boatman’s wife    Kent, Deal
Sarah Penn            Daur                             2                                    Kent, Deal
Edward Penn         Son                                1                                   Kent, Deal
Richard Cory     Father in law     Mar   76   Gardener             Bucks, M.K.
Ann Cory             Mother in law    Mar   64   Gardener’s wife  Kent, Deal
William Sneller      Boarder              U       45   Boatman              Kent, Deal

They may have gone to live with their daughter because Ann was already suffering from the long illness that led to her death 8 years later.

Ann died in 1869. She was 72

.Deal, Walmer & Sandwich Mercury. 20 Feb 1869.


Cory,- Feb 12, at Chapel Lane, Deal, Ann, wife of Mr. Richard Cory, aged 72 years, after a long protracted illness.

On the 16 Jan 1871, Henrietta’s husband, Edward Penn, was drowned when the lugger Reform went out to answer a distress signal and smashed into the Pier with the loss of eight lives, one of the worst disasters in the history of the Deal boatmen. It was commemorated by an epic poem in the local newspaper.[9]

Richard, still a gardener at 86, continued with to live with the widowed Henrietta, now in Chapel Lane.

1871 Census. Deal. 3 Chapel Lane
Henrietta Penn   Head      W        34
Sarah Penn          Daur                  12      Scholar
Edward Penn       Son                    11      Do
John Penn            Son                      9       Do
Elizabeth Penn    Daur                    7       Do
Henrietta Penn   Daur                    1       Do
Richard Cory   Father   Widr    86     Gardener

Richard died later that year, on 9 Aug 1871, aged 87.

His daughter Henrietta lived on to bring up her fatherless children. She died on 5 May 1907.[10]


[1] David Dennis
[2] Unless otherwise stated, Deal BMDs are from the Kent Family History Society’s transcripts on microfiche.
[3] David Dennis
[4] LDS Family Record
[5] LDS Family Record
[6] LDS Family Record
[7] Denise Parmentier
[8] A much fuller version of this story can be found at https://corysociety.wordpress.com/new-zealand/
[9] 5. CORY-LANGLEY Reform Disaster
[10] LDS Family Record






Cory Tree