Sunday, August 29, 2010

Drayton, Berkshire, England

As I study my genealogy I actually feel a move in my spirit...a deep connection to the past... the people.... the places... I am a Cox on my mother's side.... and our oldest known ancestor was THOMAS2 COX, b. 1641, London, England who married
CHRISTIAN MATHEWS .... however they settled in Drayton, Berkshire to have their family.. their son, William born (11 DEC 1692-d. Feb 1767) m. Catherina Kinkey in
1716 at Hockessin,New Castle Co.,Delaware....so I'd like to research a bit about Drayton Parrish..
Drayton, a village and a parish in Berks.
The village stands near the Berks and Wilts Canal, 1 1/4 mile W of tne river Thames, 1 1/2 N from Steventon station on the G.W.R., and 2 1/2 miles SW of Abingdon, and has a post and money order office under Abingdon ; telegraph office, Steventon. The parish comprises 1851 acres; population, 585. The Manor House is a chief residence. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Oxford; net yearly value, £132 with residence. Patron, Lord Wantage. The church is ancient, and has a curious Norman font. There are Baptist and Wesleyan chapels. Curios about the Norman font on the ancient church there... as it has been passed down through our family that we of Norman descent.

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Drayton is two miles from Abingdon on the old A34, once in Berkshire, now in Oxfordshire. It is the centre of an agricultural area, and was once famous for its walnuts. On the village green stands a stone cross in commemoration of Queen Victorias Golden Jubilee.

Drayton has several fine houses, including Lime Close, parts of which are Elizabethan, which was visited by the diarist James Woodforde in 1763. Other houses of note are the Grange, Sutton Wick House, Gothic House and the Manor, opposite which is a cruck cottage.

Gothic House has a mural on the gable-end of St George killing the Dragon painted by Charles Sykes in 1949, the design taken from the original, smaller mural inside the house. Drayton people used to perform a mummers play of St George and the Dragon annually at one time. Charles was an artist and sculptor, and in 1911 he designed the Spirit of Ecstasy for the Rolls Royce motor company.
As a side note to this about St George Slaying the Dragon... it is amazing to me that I am completely enamored with the tale of St. George... used to read it to my classes... and when I was in Boston this summer actually bought a poster of the artwork by Cirelli.
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It is thrillling to me to research my origins and connect with so many small details... It draws me right into the equation!

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