Cory Family Society Logo Cory Family Society Website

Harriet Cory Dickinson, Bramerton Hall, & The Norfolk Corys

A web site for the Cory, Corey, Corrie, Corry, Coray, Corie... Families

The following is from SOME CHRONICLES OF THE CORY FAMILY RELATING TO ELIAKIM AND SARAH SAYRE CORY AND THEIR DESCENDANTS, WESTFIELD, N. J., BALLSTON SPA, N. Y. WITH OTHERS FROM "JOHN OF SOUTHOLD" by Harriet C. Dickinson, pages 96-103

One of the first books to be published. This book is now out of copyright and has been made available by the American Libraries Project and it may be viewed online, 114 pages, or it can be downloaded here in PDF format, 2MB.

Books consulted for the records of the Corys of Norfolk, England.

Blomefield's "History of Norfolk," XI vols.
Chamber's "History of Norfolk," II vols.
"Bygone Norfolk," by Walter Rye.
"Norfolk Families," by Walter Rye.
"Freemen of Norwich," by Walter Rye.
Brayley's "Norfolk."
"Norfolk," by G. A. Cooke.
R. H. Mason's "Norfolk."
Norris' Pedigrees," for the families of Cory, Buckingham, and Drake.
Harlean MSS. and Norfolk "Visitations."
"Norwich Records."

  1. Cory of Bramerton, Norfolk, 1250 A. D. (speculation)
  2. John, of "Bramerton Hall," Norwich, England.
  3. Robert, of "Bramerton Hall," Norwich, England.
  4. William, of "Bramerton Hall," Norwich, England.
  5. Francis, of "Bramerton Hall" ; married Grace Brown.
  6. Thomas, of "Bramerton Hall"; married Barbara Farrar.
  7. Robert, of "Bramerton Hall."
  8. John, of "Bramerton Hall"; knighted by James I., in 1612.
  9. Thomas, of "Bramerton Hall"; knighted by Charles I., in 1637; Judge of the Court of Common Pleas.
  10. John, came to America before 1640 (no evidence that this is true)

Norfolk Descent of the Cory Family, compiled by Mr. William M. Robinson, of Grand Rapids, Mich.

Following are a few references to these men I found in the Histories of Norfolk and in the Harlean MSS. and "Visitations" of Norfolk :

Bramerton is situated four miles southeast from Norwich. The name was said to signify "Brad-mer-Town" (Broad-mer Town). to which Broad Mere belongs a swan mark to this day, and at the time of the Conquest the "mere" was four furlongs long and two and one-half broad. Nearby is the old Church of St. Peter's, built before the Conquest. And in this Church may be seen many tombs and brasses to the Corys, accompanied by the Cory Arms and Crest, "A demigriffin, or, issuant from a ducal coronet, proper."

One reads, "Here lieth Thomas Corie, Esq., only son of Francis Corie and Anne, dau. of Sir John Corbet of Sprowston, died 1682."

There is also one to "Francis Corie, Esq., and Ann, his wife."

A brass by the altar rails reads, "Here lieth the body of Robert Cory, who after long and tedious sickness of above four years continuance, which he endured with patience, died the 7th of August, A. D. 1629." (This is probably the father of Sir John Cory, who was knighted by James I., in 1612.)

Francis Blomefield, in his "History of Norfolk," gives this description of "Bramerton Hall" :

"Bramerton Hall is pleasantly situated against the east side of Bramerton Heath. It was built by the Conies, who have been owners of estates here since 1403 (but in an old book called Perlustration,' it is claimed 'the Conies first settled in Norfolk, A. D. 1399'), when Robert Corie first settled there, having purchased an estate of William Langton of Bramerton and Maud, his wife. The next is William Corie, whose 2nd son, Francis, of 'Bramerton Hall,' married Grace Broune (Brown), dau. of Mr. Broune, of the Manor of Tocalneston, Esq., and had Thomas Corie, of Norwich, Esq., who died 1590." (Thomas Corie, who married Barbara Farrar.)

John Chambers says of "Bramerton Hall": "The old Hall was pulled down, but the venerable avenue of elms still remains. The family portraits of the Corys, which are said to have been numerous, were dispersed but some of them are still in the possession of the various branches of this ancient family. The present head of Immanuel College, Rev. Dr. Cory, Robert Cory, Esq., of Great Ormesby, and Rev. Mr. Cory, of Kettlestone, are some of the English descendants of this branch."

Mr. William F. Cory, of Newark, N. J., made a visit to Bramerton Hall, August 10, 1912, and says that he found from the records there that the Hall was built by the Corys, and occupied by them from 1399 to 1682, nearly 300 years. The Hall was pulled down and partly rebuilt in 1760, in 1824, and again in 1870, and that it is now owned and occupied by a Mr. Blake.

In Vol. III, page 356, Blomefield's Norfolk, is the following note referring to Thomas Cory, who died 1590.

"In 1590 died Mr. Thomas Cory, of Norwich, Esq., and bequeathed divers messages, etc., etc., to his wife for six years, and then the Mayor to have them, till Thomas Cory, his son, came of age, and the Chamberlain to have the profits for the years following, to be lent out to young men, dwelling in West Wymer Ward, by 5£, 10 sh apiece, and 6£, 13 sh, 4 p, for a piece of plate, to be used at the Mayor's table, with this and other money added by the city in 1597. A standing cup, double gilt, of 53 ounces and 34 weight, was purchased and appointed, for the use of the Mayor, for the time being and forever." In the old Church of St. Gregory in Norwich may be seen the tomb `To Sir Thomas Cory, Died Sep. 16, 1590,' with the Cory Arms, and a Latin inscription signifying that at the time of his death he was 'Speaker of the House."

The old Church of "St. John Madder-Market" in Norwich was founded before the Confessor's time and took its name from the market held at that time in the north part for the sale of madder, used in dyeing. It was originally dedicated to the Holy Trinity and St. John Baptist.

"Elizabeth, wife of Sir Thomas Corrie," lies here. "Daughter of Christopher Layer, second son of Christopher Layer 1st, Mayor of Norwich, born 20th of Sept., 1608, and died Feb. 19, 1682." The Cory Arms are often met with in this Church : "Sable, on a chevron, between 3 griffin's heads erased, or, as many estoiles, gules."

Blomefield has the following note, Vol. VI, page 354:

Christopher Layer 2nd, son of Christopher 1st, Mayor of Norwich, married Elizabeth Rugge, dau. of William of Felmingham, gent, and Elizabeth, their dau., married Thomas Cory, Esq., and is buried in St. John Madder-Market."

The family of Layer, in Norwich, were descended from

  1. George Layer from Bury, in Suffolk, 1429. He increased his estates by his marriage to Margaret, dau. and sole heiress of Sir John Beautifont, Esq.
  2. William, son and heir, was Sheriff of Norwich, 1526, Mayor 1537, and is buried in Church of St. John Madder-Market, with his wife.
  3. John Layer, son of William, married Elizabeth, dau. of John Marsham, of Norwich. He died seized of great estates in Saxham, Faverton, Westrey, Middleton and Lowe-stoft, in Suffolk.
  4. Christopher, eldest son and heir, who purchased "Boton." He was a merchant of Norwich in 1561; Sheriff of Norwich 1596; Mayor '81 and '89, and Burgess in Parliament for Norwich, '84 and '96. He was buried in St. John Madder-Market in 1600. Seized, of Boton, Saxham, Faverton, Middleton, Westry and Lowestoft. In 1604, Barbara, his wife, dau. of Augustine Stewart, of Norwich, was buried by him, leaving three sons and five daughters.
  5. Christopher Layer 2nd, married Elizabeth Rugge. Their daughter,
  6. Elizabeth Layer, married Sir Thomas Cory of "Bramerton Hall," Norwich.

The Family of Marsham took their surname from the village of that name, where they inhabited from the time of Henry I.

  1. John de Marsham, died at Marsham, 1325 (temp. Ed-ward I.).
  2. Thomas de Marsham, his son, removed to Norwich and was a merchant there in 1350. His son
  3. Robert de Marsham lived and died at Stratton-Parva, and was the first of his name there. In Stratton-Parva Church there is a brass to him with the Marsham Arms : "Argent, crusily fitche sable, a lion passant, gules, between 2 bandlets azure, each with 3 crosslets, or."
  4. Robert, his son, lived in 1465.
  5. John, son and heir. His will is dated 24th of July, 1473 (13th, Edward IV). He is buried in the middle of the Nave of St. Margaret's Church beside Agnes, his wife, where may be seen a brass to them with the Marsham Arms.
  6. John Marsham, son and heir, was called "Senior"; died 1515, buried in the above Church with a brass plate, inscription in Latin.
  7. John, eldest son. "He was a Grocer and a great Mer-chant in Norwich, by which he much advanced his fortunes." In 1510 he was Sheriff of Norwich. In 1511, being in great favor with the Commons, he was sent up, at the City's charge, to Henry VIII, to justify the City in relation to their contests with the Prior and Convent of Norwich. In 1516 he was again sent to the King, with the Mayor, to settle those contests and had 3 horses and 2 servants allowed him, at public charge. In 1518 he was Mayor of Norwich and died 1525. Buried in Church of St. Madder-Market in which parish he dwelt in a large house in the windows of which are the Arms of Marsham. Elizabeth (Claxton), his wife, died 1559, and is buried beside him. In 1534 his Executors paid money towards building the Common Council Chambers in the Gild-Hall in which his portrait is still to be seen. He had five sons and eight daughters. One of these daughters,
  8. Elizabeth, married John Layer. Their son,
  9. Christopher Layer, married Barbara Stewart. Their son,
  10. Christopher Layer 2nd, married Elizabeth Rugge. Their daughter,
  11. Elizabeth Layer, married Sir Thomas Cory, of "Bremerton Hall," Norwich.

Blomefield says : "John Marsham built the corner house over against the Duke's Palace, on the west side of St. John's Street, in the windows of which are the arms of Marsham."

Very curious inscriptions mark their resting place in the Church of St. John Madder-Market :

"Of yur Charyte pray for the soulles of John Marsham, sometyme Maire of this Citte of Norwich, and Elizabeth, his wife, which John deceased the XIII day of May, in the year of our Lord God, 1525, on whose soulles, and alle Christen soulles, Jesu have Mercy."

Elizabeth Marsham's tomb reads :

"Charitable Pepyl that shall loke upon this ston,
Have John Marsham in remembrance, of yur Chartye
Maire of this Cyte, somtyme was his
Person, And the XIIIth Day of May, then departed he,
And Ano Domini 1525, Crist Yeres anointed
For Elizabeth, his wyffe, of yur Charyte, pray
That in the Feythe Catholick, from this Wurlde departed
In the yur of Criste 1559 Ye shal not lose yur Charytible Devocion
XII Cardinals hav graunted you
XII Dayes of Pardon."

FAMILY OF BROWN OF TOCOLNESTON

Blomefield, in his "History of Norfolk," says of this family :

"The Browns of Tocolneston are an ancient family having been in this parish since Henry VI's time."

The first one of the name in the parish was William of "William's Manor," surnamed "Tocolneston" (the place of his birth).

  1. Eustace de Tocolneston.
  2. Hugh, held the Manor, 1196-1249.
  3. Adam de Tocolneston, 1256.
  4. William was knighted in 1285.
  5. Richard was knighted in 1316.
  6. John was knighted in 1381. In 1404 he was elected Prior of Carmelites or White Friars in Norwich. He was a Doctor of Divinity, and a man of great learning, remarkable piety and a great preacher. After this the Manor fell, by escheat, to the Lord of Forneet Manor, by whom it was held till 1570.

In 1545 William Brown succeeded to the Manor, being preceded by Thomas Brown, gent, who had it by grant from Henry, Earl of Sussex. Said Thomas Brown was Lord of Carston, Miles and Bayfield, in Norfolk.

Francis Cory, of "Bramerton Hall," Norfolk, son of William, son of Robert de Cory of Scotland, married Grace Brown of Tocolneston. From date, probably dau. of Thomas Brown of Tocolneston, or William.

Their son, Thomas Cory, married Barbara Farrar.

FARRAR FAMILY

Arms.—"Vaire or and gules, on a chief sable, 3 lions' heads argent."

The first of the name in England was Hermer, who took his name from his estate in Normandy. He accompanied William the Conqueror to England and was given by him 211 estates or "Manors" in Norfolk. Some of these Manors are mentioned as Mitford, Rudham, Launditch, Hoo, Wendlings, and Gressenhall. He built a transept in the Church of Gressenhall, called "Ferrour's Chantry."

Of the Ferrars of Gressenhall and Hoo, the first to be mentioned is

  1. Alice Farrar, of Hoo, widow, whose will was dated 1400.
  2. Her children mentioned are Edmund, Thomas and John. The latter is mentioned many times in the various histories of Norfolk as "John of Hoo." He married Margaret of Motstow in Norfolk. Their son,
  3. Robert, who in 1536 was Mayor of Norwich. He set-tled in Norwich and married twice. By Anne, his 2nd wife, he had five sons and one dau., Cecilia. The sons were Sir John, Thomas, Christopher, Robert and William.
  4. William, youngest son, was Mayor of Norwich, 1562, and 1575. He married Barbara Roone, and their son,
  5. Richard Farrar, was Sheriff of Norwich, 1581, and 1590. He married several' times. One of his wives is recorded as Anne, dau. of William Drake of Forncet, in Norfolk. Their daughter,
  6. Barbara Farrar, married Thomas Cory, Esq., of "Bramerton Hall," in Norwich.

FAMILY OF DRAKE OF FORNCET, NORFOLK

Arms—"Azure, a dragon, with wings displayed, or." Crest—(The Norfolk Drakes) : A rein-deer's head, erased argent, attired, or. Motto—"Aquilla non capit muscas" (The eagle does not catch flies).

Soon after the Conquest of Wessex by the Saxons a family or clan, called Draco or Drago, appear to have taken possession of an old Roman or British encampment, in what is now Musbury in Devonshire, England. It subsequently became known as "Mount Drake." From this family, it is said that all of the name is descended. The celebrated Sir Francis Drake, of Spanish Armada fame, belonged to the Devonshire branch of the family.

Our descent is from the Norfolkshire branch and is to be found in Harlean MSS. and the "Visitations of Norfolk" (page 366).

  1. John Drake of Pulham in Norfolk married —.
  2. William Drake, of Fornsett, gent, married Isabell Bokenham (Buckingham).
  3. Anne, their daughter married Richard Farrar, of Norwich (in Blomefield she is called "Maud").
  4. Barbara Farrar, dau. of Richard and Anne Drake Farrar, married Thomas Cory, Esq., of Norwich, who died 1590.

"Forncet, 12 miles from Norwich, is called in Domesday Book Tornsetta,' and was held at the time of the Great Survey, 1086, by Roger Bygot, 1st Norman Earl of Norfolk. It was at that time distinguished by having the 'Knight's Court' held there every three weeks, and to which were attributed five different officers, viz : An Auditor, a Feodary, a Collector, a Serjeant, and a Bailiff. At this Court, all the great men who held their several Manors of the Norfolk honour, were obliged to attend in person to do suit and service and to compound for Castle Guard service at the Earl's Castle in Norwich. Fornsett had two Churches, St. Mary's and St. Peter's. In the latter, is an Altar tomb with figures of a man and his wife, engraved, erected to the memory of Thomas Drake and his wife,—the inscription gone." (From John Chambers' "History of Norfolk.")

BOKENHAM, OR BUCKINGHAM FAMILY

Arms.—"Argent, a lion rampant, gules."

History gives the derivation of this family as follows : "The Manor of Olde Hall (Norfolk), was part of Snetterton at the time of the Conquest and in the Confessor's time. Aylwin was Lord of it. His brother,

  1. Ralph, held it at the time of the Survey, 1086.
  2. Richard descended of Ralph, and was succeeded by
  3. Hugh, who was first surnamed Rufus, and later "de Bokenham" (of Bokenham Manor). His son,
  4. William de Bokenham, married a dau. and heiress of Sir Benedict de Angerville, and his dau. inherited from him the estates of West Newton, West Hervey and Kerhalle. Their son,
  5. Hugh, his son and heir,
  6. Ralph, was Lord of these Manors, and patron of St. Andrew's Church, 1257.
  7. Sir Hugh de Bokenham, was knighted, 1281, and married Margaret, dau. of Miles Le Parker, Esq. Their son,
  8. Sir Hugh, died 1290.
  9. Sir Hugh, succeeded, 1331; died 1339.
  10. Latter's son —, was Lord of all the de Bokenham Manors, and died 1369, seized of the Manors of Thelvetham and Livermere, in Suffolk, and the Manors of Snetterton, Kerhalle, and Eldehalle, in Norfolk. Left his widow Julian, and son
  11. Hugh. He married 1385; died 1425.
  12. Edmund, died 1479.
  13. George de Bokenham, married, 1st, Christian de Grey of Merton, Norfolk ; married, 2nd, Margaret, dau. of Francis Worthington, Esq., of Suffolk. Their son,
  14. John Bokenham.
  15. Thomas, of Great Livermere, and Elizabeth, Jenour, dau. of John, of Great Dunmow, in Essex. He died Dec. 9, 1535.
  16. John Bokenham, of Snetterton, Esq., last heir male of this family, born Aug., 1534; married Lucy, dau. of Clement Heigham, of Barrow, in Suffolk, Knight. She died Aug. 1, 1551, seized of Oldenhalle, Newhall, Kerhalle, in Norfolk, and Thelvetham and Livermere, in Suffolk. As many of these Manors are recorded as descending to the Drakes of Forncet, and as also the dates would correspond, Isabell Bokenham was a dau. of this John and Lucy Bokenham.