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Family Notes Sept 2007
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Family Notes - September 2007


This is a sample of the information provided to members of the P*rr*tt Society in the September 2007 edition of Family Notes. Family Notes is a 56-page printed magazine that is distributed to society members every quarter.

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Crimes & Misdemeanours
then and now

Sydney Gazette, 7 July 1825

Mary Parrott, prisoner of the crown, wife of James Parrott, against whom her injured lord had made complaints on several occasions lately, who had forgiven her past offences, and again restored her to his bosom in hopes of her amendment, but finding all his indulgence abused, now appeared with his last sad appeal to the consideration of the Bench and having deposed an oath to her violent misconduct, and unquestionable infidelity, procured for her a sentence of 6 months to the Factory, which irritated the sinister feelings of the fair frail one, that she made a desperate blow at her deserted husband, in the moment of his exultation at having at length got her disposed of, that the Bench deeming it an addition to her offence to commit such an outrage in a Court of Justice, added six months more to her sentence, and she was destined to the Factory for twelve months.


Bell’s Weekly Messenger, 30 Oct 1831

Wm. Parrott, a bailiff's follower, who was charged a few days since at Guildhall, with attempting to murder his wife, was fully committed for trial. The prisoner's wife had been living apart from him for five weeks, when on the 5th of October he obtained an interview with her. He asked her to come back with him, and on her refusing drew a razor from his pocket and cut his wife dreadfully in the throat. He would have, perhaps, repeated his blows, had not assistance been rendered, the prisoner now deeply regrets his rashness.

The Central Criminal Court London (‘The Old Bailey’) in the early years of the 19th century.


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An old indenture, and some DNA, start to unravel old family relationships.

by members Harald Reksten & Wayne Parott

For many years, coincidence of time, place and family names led many to believe the American Parrotts were all one family. With the advent of DNA-based genealogy, it has become apparent that most American Parrotts belong to one of two large families, though another half-dozen unrelated P-rr-tts share the name as well. DNA results are posted at:


Nevertheless, while a DNA match can indicate family relationships, it cannot specify the nature of the relationship– e.g., it cannot distinguish between brothers or cousins. To illustrate, one of the American lineages traces back to Luke Parrott, who was born about 1776 in Virginia. Luke’s DNA matches Richard Perrott of Middlesex County, Virginia, patriarch of one the two largest Parrott/Parrett families in the USA. Richard was in York County, Virginia, by 1647. Part of York County became Lancaster County in 1651 and the portion of Lancaster County below the Rappahannock River became Middlesex County in 1669.

The records of Middlesex and its parent counties are very good, having escaped the fate of many Virginia records destroyed during the Civil War or by fire. Thus a paper trail for the first few generations of Richard Perrott’s descendents is easily created.

A recently discovered "Delivered to Luke Parrott" notation on the left margin (see photo, below) of an indenture probated in Pittsylvania county, Virginia, on 16 January 1786, whereby Thorpe Parrott is selling land to his father, Nathaniel, suggests Luke is of that family. Luke is a very uncommon Parrott given name in the United States and there is no known ambiguity in Pittsylvania and neighboring counties.

The origin of Nathaniel Parrott has long been a mystery, as has the origin of Luke Parrott...

(Continued in the printed edition of Family Notes)


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Sir Walter Parratt, famous as the organist at Windsor Castle in Victorian times.

Charles Conteto Parrott in the dress uniform of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps in about 1914. He joined in 1912 and was captured at the battle of Mons and was a P.O.W. for 3½ years.


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Family History on the Internet

There are a great many family history sites on the Internet, many of which are of considerable use to us all. But there are also many small, personal sites which their compilers use to publish the results of their own research into their family background.

‘Sheila Khan’s Family Tree’ is one such site http://www.sheilakhan.100megsfree5.com/james.html . On the face of it there is no obvious connection between the Khan and P*RR*TT families but according to Sheila one set of her ancestors (I don’t know how many ‘greats’) were Edward Parrott and Mary Godber. The IGI records their marriage in Basford, Nottinghamshire on 16th February 1779.

Their son James Godber Parrott was born, probably on the same year. Not a lot is known about the family except that this son married Ann Burrey in Basford on 25 June 1811 - but he dropped the ‘Parrott’ and gave his name simply as ‘James Godber’. (Why?).

The couple had several children; the first born 25 October 1812 and named Diane was recorded as the daughter of ‘James Godber and Ann Parrot’.

Later children (William 1814, Selina 1818, Fanny 1820, Edwin 1821 and Asa, c. 1825) were all recorded as children of ‘James Godber and Ann’ so the obvious assumption is that the family had abandoned the Parrott name altogether.

So - on your Parrott tree, do you have the marriage of Edward Parrott and Mary Godber; and if you do are you able to give us an explanation of why their son James Godber Parrott chose to be known by his mother’s, rather than his father’s, surname?

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Last modified: 22 July 2018