Hayden Family History

Hayden Family History


        The text below is excerpted from "The Family Drury" - The origin of the name, family and arms. 1999 (unpublished manuscript) by Robert W. Dora.



     The Haydons left England for reasons similar to that of the Drurys. The great Civil War had caused the loss of their ancestral lands because they supported the Monarchy. Their Catholic religion and their refusal to accept the established church, led to an untenable situation for them.

     The Name harks back to the family of "de Heydon". The "de" in the name "de Heydon" suggests a Norman connection. Paradoxically, the "don" in Heydon or Haydon suggests a Saxon heritage. Both are probably correct. Barber’s "British Family Names", p 33, has Heddon, Hiddon, Hayken, and Heiken as Frisian family names. Around 1400 the spelling is generally Heydon, later Haidon, Heidon, and Haydon. But the surname undoubtedly originates from the home or birthplace of Thomas de Heydon. He lived in Heydon, in South Eppington. The earliest records of the Heydon family show that Thomas de Heydon was an itinerant justice in Norfolk in 1221, under a commission granted by Henry III. His descendants continued at Heydon through Sir Richard Heydon, who died in the French Wars.

     Sir Richard’s son was John Heydon of the Grove. John Heydon, who added the south chapel to Watford Church [St. Mary] and who died in the year 1408, is described on his monument as of the Grove. From him the estate descended in a direct line to Francis Heydon, High Sheriff of this county in 1584. Other memorials which do not survive but are described in Cussan’s History of Hertfordshire show that William Heydon, son of William Heydon, married Elizabeth Aubrey daughter of Robert and Christian Aubrey of Buckingham. They had a son and heir, William (III) who married Alice daughter of Alexander Newton of Swell, Somerset.

     The Grove was a Manor in the Parish of Watford, Hertfordshire. It had formerly been a royal domain and was probably a grant from the king for Sir Richard’s service in the wars. It was a portion of the old Roman manor of Cassiobury. The parish of Watford is situated on the southwestern corner of Hertfordshire some twenty miles northwest of London. It is watered by two small rivers. The Colne flows from the northeast. The other, the Gade, comes from the northwest and runs through the park of the Grove. For many generations the Heydons prospered at Watford. They had acquired the manor of Watford from the Longuevilles, as it had been part of the honor of Giffard. Francis Heydon was born 1628 in Watford. He grew up in the turbulence of the Civil War and probably with impaired fortunes. Since, despite search, no record had been found of him in English Court or Parochial records, we have assumed him to be the immigrant.

     On April 28, 1678, when he would have been 50, Francis Heydon and his wife Tomasine proved his right to a grant of 200 acres for transporting himself, his wife, and his daughters Penelope and Mary into Maryland. The year before, Francis Heydon of St. Mary’s County petitioned on behalf of his wife Tomasine in a matter involving her brother, Thomas Butler’s estate. Tomasine’s Will spells the name Hayden and so it has remained in St. Mary’s County ever since.

     Francis and Tomasine’s son William was twice married. His first wife’s name is most likely Thomas or Thompson. She was the mother of his four elder children; Grace Herbert, Tomasine Cissell, Charles, and William. His eight children by his second wife Elizabeth were Francis, Susan, James, George, John, Clement, Richard, and Elizabeth Hayden. Elizabeth survived her husband by some years. One of those named in her Will is her daughter, referred to there as Susannah Drury. Susannah had married John Drury in 1734.


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