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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




SAMUEL CORY is thought to be the son of Thomas and Susannah Cory. If so, then he was baptised on 14 Nov 1697. He was the tenth of twelve children.

There were a number of Thomas Corys in the Northamptonshire village of Harpole, making it difficult to distinguish between them. Samuel’s father was probably a grocer. If so, he seems to have been a man of some standing. He was awarded the courtesy title ‘Mr’ when he was buried.

Samuel may have become a thatcher, unless this was Samuel Cory senior, who married in the same year.


ELIZABETH BALES. Nothing is yet known about Elizabeth’s origins. Since she was married in Harpole, she was either born in the parish or had settled there since. The date of her marriage suggests that she was born around the turn of the century.


Their wedding took place in Harpole on 5 Oct 1724.

Only two children are recorded for them in Harpole. They had a daughter Mary, baptised in 1726, and a son John, baptised 24 Nov 1730.

John appears to have become a schoolmaster, so Samuel and Elizabeth must have secured a good education for him.


The early 18th century saw a consolidation of England as not only a Protestant, but an Anglican, country. William and Mary were succeeded by Mary’s sister Anne in 1702. There were bills which excluded Dissenters, as well as Roman Catholics, from holding public office, becoming MPs and running their own schools. We do not know the Corys’ religious leanings. In the previous century, Northampton was a strongly Puritan city.
There was some relaxation for Dissenters after the first Hanoverian king, George I, took the throne in 1714. But in 1715, the Old Pretender, James Stuart, son of James II, landed with an invasion force in Scotland. Though the Jacobite Rebellion was short-lived, and the defeated James fled back to France, it heightened the feeling in England against Roman Catholics.
I745 saw a more dangerous rebellion. The Young Pretender, Charles Stuart, seized Edinburgh and invaded England. He got as far as Derby, 50 miles north of Harpole, before overextended communications lines forced him to turn back. No doubt the Northamptonshire militia had been put on a war footing. The following year he was soundly defeated at the bloody Battle of Culloden and fled to France.


Elizabeth was probably in her fifties when she died. She was buried in Harpole on 14 Jan 1750 and recorded as “wife of Samuel”.

The date of Samuel’s death is less certain. A Samuel Cory was buried at Harpole on 19 Aug 1754. It is this burial record which names him as a thatcher. If this is Elizabeth’s husband, he would have been 55.

There is a much later burial for Samuel Cory on 4 March 1771, making him 73. It is not clear which burial is which for the two contemporary Samuels.






Cory Tree