Rye, Sussex Genealogy

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Rye St Mary the Virgin

Parish History

Rye St Mary the Virgin is an Ancient parish and market town.

The church, begun in the 12th century, has a famous 16th century clock with an 18-foot pendulum. Instead of striking the hour, a pair of gilded cherubs strike the quarters. Inside the church are stained glass windows from the firm of William Morris.

Rye Church Clock St Mary the Virgin

RYE (St. Mary), a cinque-port, borough, market-town, and parish, having separate jurisdiction, and the head of a union, locally in the hundred of Gostrow,rape of Hastings, E. division of Sussex, 63 miles (S.E. by E.) from London;containing 4031 inhabitants.
The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king'sbooks at £42. 13. 4.; patron, T. C. Langford, Esq.;appropriator, the Bishop of Winchester: the great tithes have been commuted for £315, and the vicarial for £410.The church is a spacious cruciform structure, partly Norman and partly in the early English style, with a central tower, in which is a clock of peculiar mechanical construction, said to have been taken from the SpanishArmada, and given to the town by Queen Elizabeth.The east window is in the later English style, of large dimensions and of elegant design, and has been embellished with some stained glass at the expense of J. H.Lardner, Esq. There are places of worship for Baptists,Independents, and Wesleyans. A school was founded in 1644, by Thomas Peacock, who endowed it with arent-charge of £36, the interest of £50, and a house; and in 1702, another school was established by James Saunders, who assigned to it estates now producing £100. 10.per annum. The poor-law union comprises 12 parishes or places, containing a population of 9804. A monasteryof friars of the order of St. Augustine was founded a short time before the Dissolution; the principal remains have been converted into a storehouse. Samuel Jeakes,an eminent antiquary, and the author of the Charters ofthe Cinque Ports, was a native of Rye.

From: 'Rutchester - Ryton-Woodside', A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 719-725. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=51251 Date accessed: 01 May 2011.


Civil Registration

Birth, marriages and deaths were kept by the government, from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is FreeBMD.

Church records

Contributor: Include here information for parish registers, Bishop’s Transcripts, non conformist and other types of church records, such as parish chest records. Add the contact information for the office holding the original records.

Link to the Family History Library Catalogue showing the film numbers in their collection

Census records

Contributor: Include an overview if there is any unique information, such as the census for X year was destroyed. Add a link to online sites for indexes and/or images. Also add a link to the Family History Library Catalog showing the film numbers in their collection.

Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Sussex Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Maps and Gazetteers

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Web sites

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