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The Harpole/Northampton Branch

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Members of the Thomas Cory, Joseph Corey, and David Corey families in America show a Y-chromosome match to Colin Cory of Harpole England.  Colin is able to traced his ancestry to Nicholas Corye of Harpole.

We know that there were Cory families in Harpole at least as early as 1435. Members of the Harpole Heritage Society have seen records showing that a large home in Harpole, called Fernville, was built by an unknown Corye, circa 1435. Records giving the names and other details about the ancestors of Nicholas 1 Corye before 1500 are either not available or not readable.

The surname of most descendants of Nicholas 1 was spelled "Corye" until about the time Thomas of Chelmsford immigrated to America, circa 1642. Since that time the descendants of Nicholas in England have, in most cases, spelled their surname "Cory".

No date for the birth of Nicholas1 Cory has been found and we have no name for his first wife with whom he had at least five children. His second marriage was to Emma Dunkley, in 1538. Nicholas1 and Emma had five children (of record) including Thomas who married Elizabeth Dunkley in 1539 and John who married Alice.

Thomas and Elizabeth Dunkley had eight children of record including Martin who married Katheren Righton in 1583. Martin had a son Giles born circa 1584, the father of Giles, born 1621, who we believe immigrated to Massachusetts, circa 1642. Summarizing, the lineage of Giles of Salem Village is: Nicholas1, Thomas, Martin, Giles, Giles of Salem Village.

John and Alice had ten children of record including Nicholas2 who married Elizabeth Ward in 1575. The latter couple had four children including Nicholas3, born circa 1577. Nicholas3 married Elizabeth Ashbee in 1601 and had five children including Thomas, born circa 1603. Thomas married Alice Harris in 1622. Alice died four years later, but before her death she gave birth to three children including Thomas, born circa 1622, who we believe immigrated to America, circa 1642. Summarizing, the lineage of Thomas of Chelmsford is: Nicholas1, John, Nicholas2, Thomas, Thomas of Chelmsford.

Our reason for believing that this Thomas emigrated to America is that all other descendants of Nicholas1 named Thomas during that era are on record as having died in England. Neither the marriage nor death of Thomas (born in Harpole in 1622) is recorded in England. Records are available showing that a Thomas Cory had settled in Chelmsford, Massachusetts, by 1645. The conclusion that Thomas of Chelmsford was the Thomas born in Harpole is reinforced by the fact that DNA from the descendants of Thomas of Chelmsford in America matches that of descendants of Nicholas1 in Harpole.

We can be reasonably certain that all Cory/Corey males in America, with Y-chromosome profiles matching the Harpole Cory males, are descended from Nicholas1. However, we cannot be certain that they are all descended from Thomas of Chelmsford. To date, Earl Cory, our webmaster, and Thomas Wendell Corey (David Corey line) are the only Cory males with documentary evidence of descent from Thomas. Society members Arthur T. Corey (Joseph Cory line) and Arthur E. Corey also have Y-chromosome profiles matching the Harpole Cory line. However, available documentary evidence indicates only that their Corey ancestors lived in Connecticut early in the 19th century. No descendant of Thomas who moved to Connecticut has been identified. The possibility exists that another Cory male from the Harpole line immigrated to Connecticut for whom no record has been found.

Thomas Cory may have came to America from Harpole/Northampton, England circa 1642 and first settled at Charlestown, MA, then went to Chelmsford (Carlisle), MA in 1662 after being granted land by the Crown.

It is stated in Thomas Wendell Corey's copy for the Corey papers by his 4th generation great grandfather, Alpheus Prentice Corey, born 6 Nov 1795, that he had been told that the first Cor(e)ys in this country were two brothers.

It is known that by 1691, in the area of Chelmsford, MA that with the arrival of a Thomas Cory and John Cory, from Barnestaple, Devonshire, England, (who father was Ferdinand Cory and Mother was Elizabeth Wilford) made a total of six Thomas Corys and six John Corys living with in the area.

From records and others working on the Corey/Cory family line we come to this possible educated view point: we know that Thomas most likely had a brother(s). We know he was was most likely born in Harpole, England.

There are some records that have him near Boston as early as 1644. This is more likely, Thomas Rich, the adopted son of Giles Cory, the son of his third wife Martha Penyor and Henry Rich.  He worked to clear his mother's name after the Salem Witch Trials.

Further information is needed to determine the relationships between the Hapole/Northampton Corys and the Norfolk Corys.   Further DNA data is required to determine if there is a connection.  All male Corys are welcome to participate in our joint DNA project.  Please refer to our DNA page for further information.