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Coats of Arms of Matlock Families, 1817 and before
Published Pedigrees of Matlock Families and Coats of Arms
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Extracted from
Lysons, Rev Daniel and Samuel Lysons Esq. (1817) "Topographical and Historical Account of Derbyshire"
and other sources.
Please note that all the quoted text refers to 1817 and before.



ARKWRIGHT of Willersley-hall [sic].
The founder of this family was the late Sir Richard Arkwright, who, from an humble origin acquired opulence by the industrious application of his extraordinary mechanical talents, to the improvement of cotton manufacture. He was sheriff of the county in 1786, and the same year created a knight. In 1782 he purchased the Willersley estate, and, in 1788, built Willersley-hall [Willersley Castle], which is now the residence of his son, Richard Arkwright, Esq., M.P.
(from: The Gentry listed in 1817).

    ARMS granted in 1787: Argent on a mount in base a cotton tree, fructed Proper ; a chief, Azure, thereon between two besants, an inescutcheon of the first charged with a Bee volant erect, Proper.
CREST: An Eagle rising Or, having a shield Azure, charged with a cotton hank, Argent, suspended from its beak by a ribbon, Gules.[1]
MOTTO : Multa, tuli fecique. (I have suffered and done many things)[2].

The Lysons included a much simpler crest, with the cotton tree in the centre. These arms have been reproduced from Bryan[2].

DEANE, of Matlock, afterwards of Beeley, descended from the Deanes, of Deane-hall, in Cheshire.
Five descents are described in the Visitation of 1611[4]. Edward Deane, then living had a son Robert, 13 years of age. This family removed to Ashbo[u]rne, became reduced, and is supposed to be extinct.

    ARMS: Or, a fesse dancettée ; in chief, three crescents, gules[1].
(from: Families for whom it has not been ascertained whether they are or not extinct.)

See 1554 Will extracts for Robert Deane of Matlock.

FERNE of Parwich, Bonsall and Snitterton.
William Ferne, son of Thomas the first mentioned in the pedigree, was at Parwich about the year 1500 ; his grandson was of Temple-Belwood in Lincolnshire. This elder branch is probably extinct. Robert Ferne of Bonsall, supposed to have been descended from a younger branch of this family, although the descent could not be ascertained, had a grant of arms, somewhat differing from those of Ferne of Parwich. Henry Ferne, Esq., son of Robert, became possessed of Snitterton by purchase, and died without male issue in 1723 ; one of his coheiresses married Turnor of Lincolnshire.


ARMS of Ferne of Parwich: Per bend indented, Or and Gules.
CREST: A garb, Or, between two wings expanded, per pale indented, Or and Gules.

ARMS of Ferne of Bonsall: Per bend indented, Argent and Gules, two lions heads erased ,counterchanged, crowned, Or.
CREST: A mount of Ferne, Proper, theron a garb, Or, banded, Gules[1].
(from: Families extinct, or removed out of the County, since 1500.)

See the MI for Henry Ferne at Bonsall Church.

John Sleigh's "Derbyshire Armory" (1864-5) somewhat confused things as he stated the first crest is Parwich, Bonsall and Snitterton, whereas the second crest in Bonsall only. As Henry Ferne moved from Bonsall to Snitterton this cannot be correct. He also links it with EVANS of Allestree-hall as that crest is quartered with Ferne of Bonsall[3].


    ARMS: Erm. a cross patée throughout, gules.
CREST: A hand erect vested azure in the hand proper, a chaplet gules.
MOTTO : Fari quæ sentiat.

The Lysons did not include these arms. They have been reproduced from Bryan[2].

NIGHTINGALE of Lea and Matlock
Peter Nightingale, Esq., purchased this estate in 1707. By the will of Peter Nightingale, Esq., who was sheriff of the county in 1770, his great nephew, William Edward Shore, Esq., took the name Nightingale in 1815. He resides at Lea-wood house, near Cromford. No arms were entered when the change of name took place.

    ARMS: Per pale, ermine and gules, a rose countercharged.
CREST: An ibex, sejant, argent, tufted, armed, and maned, or[1].

A larger version of these arms can be seen on Pedigree of Nightingale

The Lysons did not include an image for these arms. They have been reproduced from Bryan[2].

SNITTERTON of Snitterton, a branch of the Shirley family. The heiress married Sacheverell before the year 1500.
(From Lysons: Families extinct before the Time of the Herald's Visitations[4].)

    ARMS: Gules, a snipe, Argent, gorged with a crown, Or[1].

STEVENSON of Matlock and Weston[1]
"The heiress, about the latter end of the seventeenth century, married Saville, whose heiress married Gilbert" (from Lysons, Families extinct or removed out of the County, since 1500).

  No image   ARMS: Gules, a bend argent, charged with three leopards' heads vert (another proper)

WOLLEY of Riber and Allen-hill
The family of Wolley are of considerable antiquity in Derbyshire ; the name occurs among gentry listed in the reign of Henry VI. Two branches of this family were for many generations settled at Riber and Allen-hill, in Matlock. The Riber branch became extinct by the death of Anthony Wolley, esq., in 1668. Mr. John Wolley, of London, grocer, is the representative of the Allen-hill branch. His younger brother, Mr. Adam Wolley, to whom we have been indebted for so much valuable assistance, resides at Matlock-Bath. A younger branch of the Wolleys of Allen-hill, (some time extinct), was for several generations, of Marston-on-Dove. Mr. William Wolley, who wrote a M.S. history of Derbyshire about the year 1712, was of this branch.
(from Lysons, The Gentry listed in 1817.)

    ARMS: Sable a Chevron vaire or and gules between three maidens' heads couped at the shoulder proper.
CREST: A man's head in profile covered with chain mail and couped at the shoulders proper[1].
MOTTO: Honeste Audax.[2]
A larger version of these arms can be seen in the pedigree of Wolley of Riber

Written and researched by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only.


[1] Lysons, Rev Daniel and Samuel Lysons Esq. (1817) "Topographical and Historical Account of Derbyshire" London: Printed for T. Cadell, Strand; and G. and A. Greenland, Poultry.

[2] Bryan, Benjamin (1903) "History of Matlock - Matlock, Manor and Parish" London by Bemrose & Sons, Limited.

[3] John Sleigh in his Derbyshire Armory, published in "The Reliquary, Quarterly Journal and Review" Vols. 5 (1863-4) and 6 (1865-6). Ed. Llewellynn Jewitt, F.S.A. Published London: John Russell Smith, 36 Soho Square Derby : Bemrose & Sons, Irongate. Interestingly, the Leacrofts were not recorded by Sleigh.

[4] *Visitation (Oxford English Dictionary ) :"A periodic visit made to a district by heralds to examine and enrol arms and pedigrees".
There were a number of Visitations. For example, The Visitation of Derbyshire 1662 - 1664 has been published by the Harleian Society - New Series Volume 8 (1988) and contains early Derbyshire pedigrees. You will also come across "visitations" noted in parish records when a bishop or archdeacon will have visited the parish or religious institution to make sure that all was well.