started researching my husband's Yeo family in 1991. His branch
of the Yeo family descends from South Tawton, near Okehampton,
Devon. The progenitor of this branch was a Robert Yeo who married
a Joane Arscott in 1719. The problem I then had was where was
Robert born. Fortunately for me, when he was buried in South
Tawton, on the 28th January, 1772 his age was recorded as 80.
The only IGI entry I could find for this was a Robert son of
Robert and Margaret Brown, baptised in Merton on the 16th March,
1692 but I had to prove this. Over the next few months/years
I worked through all the Devon Parish registers that had not
been IGI'd, extracting early Yeo baptisms. This was the start
of the Yeo One Name Study....
became apparent that many Yeo branches had experienced the same
problems, and that it was only by collecting all Yeo baptisms
and other events plus sharing information that we would be able
to solve some of the problems. Over the last twelve years many
Yeo descendants have joined together and shared their research
and my role has been a 'caretaker' of much of their information.
Living in Devon enabled me to have access to records that were
not available elsewhere and over the years I have been able
to help many fellow researchers and at the same time built up
a massive data base. I have made many friendships and over the
years have had numerous visits from distant cousins, all with
a shared interest.
interests have been divided into two areas,
1. The One
Name Study, which I have shared with so many people, and is
One Name Study.
I have already explained, this is the work of many people, who
have shared their trees and information with myself and others.
The Study is world wide and includes branches in USA, Canada,
Mexico, Australia, New Zealand etc. I have most of the trees
on one massive tree, on my computer, far too large to send via
the internet, but I will always share information when an enquiry
comes in and can send branches... Where possible I prefer to
put any new researcher in touch with someone who is related
as there is far more meaning to the trees when people can discuss
their own joint ancestors.
2. The Early
is mainly my own work, although I have tremendous help from
other people, including researchers from the interlinking families,
e.g. Crockers, Fortescue, Cory.
have looked at the printed Yeo biographies, and value all the
work that has been done, I have as far as possible tried to
also use original material, basically so that mistakes aren't
repeatedly copied. My theory is that each historian builds on
the work of another and as more records are available now than
there were a hundred years ago, it has meant that I am able
to prove or disprove some of what was written in the past. There
is one exception to this, the research done by Humphrey Toms
and Reg Walters. In my early days, they were my mentors. Reg
let me copy all the research they had done on the Yeo family
in the Bradworthy and Stratton areas and it was a very thorough
study and it gave me a firm base to work from. Any researchers
of these two areas will be aware of the Bradworthy and Stratton
Parish Registers that they both worked on and between them produced
two excellent books containing all the extracted parish register
events, plus many other anecdotes relating to these two parishes.
Reg also transcribed many early Yeo documents that are held
in the Public Record Office in London. He worked in Chancery
Lane, London, and during his lunch breaks he used to extract
the information from these original documents. Reg produced
the tree for the Bradworthy Yeos, using these documents and
old wills etc.
has been similar, using Reg's work as a base I have extended
the research on the Stratton and Bradworthy Yeos and also studied
many of the other branches. It has never ceased to amaze me
how many early records are available and I still have many Chancery
Causes held in the Public Record Office, London, to view and
early days, I met Jeremy Engert. (Jeremy descends from the Stratton
Yeos). What would I have done without Jeremy ? For a time he
worked in the Hartley Library, in Southampton and he went through
so many early historical deeds indexes and sent me masses through
the post and by fax. Anything I wanted, often so I could cross
reference a particular entry - just a phone call and it was
there. This still goes on now and there can't be many early
Yeo entries that he hasn't manage to find. We have often met
in different parts of the country such as London and Bristol
in pursuit of more Yeo information, and are now obviously very
Devon, enabled me to access many original deeds. Held at Exeter
Record Office, under Yeo family deeds, were masses of documents,
personal letters, wills etc relating to the Huish branch of
Yeos. I have acquired copies of most of this material and also
some early wills and deeds held at the Cornwall Record Office
relating to the Stratton Yeo family, plus Family papers for
the North Petherwin branch.