“Isaac? Of Pulverbatch, Salop”-Another Genealogical Mystery Solved!

The amateur genealogist searching the Medlicott family tree will find a treasure trove of information on the website created by Phil Medlicott found at www.fam.medlicott.uk.com

One of the most interesting and useful tools on any enquiry is the “ARMS” pedigree found on the website, which was one of the earliest recorded efforts to document the Medlicott family.(see below)

I have referenced this family tree on many occasions, as I have endeavored to catalogue the ancestors of my wife, Joan Elaine Medlicott. I have written several articles which I have posted on my own personal website wjanhorn.ca and as a result have had several enquiries from overseas regarding their own connection to our branch of the Medlicott family. It is of some interest to note in reviewing the “ARMS” pedigree that standing out almost alone in the third line is reference to “Isaac? Of Pulverbatch Salop”. In response to a recent enquiry regarding the ancestors of a current Shropshire resident (John David William Chilton) and his relationship to this branch of the Medlicott family, I have had occasion to research this incongruity, which has taken me on another genealogical adventure.[1]

Pulverbatch is a small village and civil parish in central Shropshire and located near some interesting places including Habberley and Picklescott. In my research, I found that the name “Isaac” was spelt in several different ways including the typical biblical spelling but also “Isaack” and “Isaacke”. I place no significance in this deviation as this was not unusual at the time. As I noted in an earlier article, “One can therefore conclude that in examining earlier documents, the spelling of names, whether first or last names or of the name of a particular place, little importance should be placed on the spelling as it was quite common for there to be different uses of either a vowel or consonant.”

The Limitations on my Genealogical Research

I have conducted my research of the Medlicott family out of personal interest and as a hobby, much like some people collect stamps.  I also enjoy writing and endeavor to put my genealogical research, whenever possible, in some historical context or provide a personal perspective. I currently have posted over 1000 names on my own public Medlicott tree utilizing ancestry.ca and as one would expect I have endeavored, as much as possible to be accurate. To a large extent however, I have relied on other public trees as a sources of my information as opposed to original source data. But prior to logging a name on the family tree, I have adopted my own protocol in order to maintain accuracy and consistency. I verify the information in several ways. Firstly, wherever possible by referencing the information with original documentation.ie government census, birth and death records. Secondly, confirming that the same information has been used on at least two other public trees. Thirdly, by referencing dates of birth, death and marriage to insure consistency with other entries on the family tree. As with any of this type of research, there is always an element of conjecture and therefore, I place the “E&O excepted” caveat.


What’s in a Name?

The best available evidence would suggest that “Isaac? Of Pulverbatch of Salop” was born in either 1600 or by some other accounts 1605 and that he died in 1667. He was the son of Edward Medlicott and Alice Chapman who are inextricably linked to John Medlicott and Eleanor Thynne, the latter being a member of the infamous Thynne family, who can trace their history back to William the Conqueror and the Norman invasion.[2]  Sir John Thynne (1449-1479) married Lady Joan Bowdler and they had two sons: Roger and Ralph. Here the two branches of the family split with one branch of the family with the patriarch Ralph Thynne and his descendants “going on to fortune and fame and a life among the aristocracy of England with many relatives “rubbing shoulders” with Kings and Queens.”[3] It is well documented that Ralph Thynne is the 14th great grandfather of Lady Diana, Princess of Wales and as a result, this branch of the family is directly related to the future heirs to the Royal Crown-William and Harry. I have documented and verified clearly that Joan Elaine Medlicott is the 14th cousin once removed of Lady Diana, Princess of Wales.[4]

Roger Thynne had a son named William who in turn had a daughter named Eleanor. Eleanor Thynne married John Medlicott and it is here where the Medlicott family takes its “roots” as noted in the “ARMS” pedigree in the place called Medlicott, Wentnor, Shropshire -the birthplace of the Medlicott family. John Medlicott was a successful entrepreneur and became a wealthy landowner and it is reported that in partnership with his father-in-law, William Thynne constructed several flour mills.[5] 

John and Eleanor had several children including Edward Medlicott (1570-1634) and it is from this lineage that the English Medlicott family grew exponentially throughout England and Wales and beyond to Canada, Australia and the United States of America. They also had a son named Isaac but there is no information provided in this earliest of pedigrees other than this brief reference.

To the Task At Hand

Isaac of Pulverbatch had two sons named Mathew and William and each married and had children of their own including each having sons named “Isaac”. The following screen shot from my public tree represents the documented family members from the period 1605 to 1726.

We pick up the task of identifying the ancestors of John David William Chilton by referencing Joshua Medlicott (1726) who married Martha Hotchkis on July 23rd 1749. They had four children: John (1750), William (1751-1831), Mary (1753) and Edward (1755-1827). William married Susannah Roberts (1786-1851) and they had 8 children: James (1805) William (1806) Mary (1808) Martha (1811) John (1814-1898) Thomas (1816-1818) Susannah (1822-1824) Richard (1825-1827). It is of some interest to note that the latter 3 children, all died at an early age.

John Medlicott married twice. Firstly, to Elizabeth Corbett and secondly, Charlotte Breese. The marriage to Elizabeth Corbett produced 6 children: William (1840), Sarah (1842), John (1844-1932, Mary (1839), Richard (1954) and Elizabeth (1855-1859). John Medlicott married Jane Seabury and they had 12 children. A further screenshot identifies these children and their respective spouses.

Relative to the task at hand is the person in the name of George Hollyoake Oliver Medlicott (1888-1963), who was 8th child of John Medlicott and Jane Seabury. He married Edith Emily Horler (1862-1943). Together they had 6 children: Daisy May (1911-1993), Leonard John (1912-1998), George Henry (1917-1986), Mabel Ellen (1919-2003), Alfred Gordon (1921-1973) and Charles Desmond (1923-1998).

I would be remiss if I did not mention that both George Hollyoake Oliver and his brother Leonard John Medlicott served gallantly in WWI as was the case of several other members of the Medlicott family of that era including Joan’s grandfather Thomas Medlicott and her great uncles Edward and George Medlicott. George Medlicott paid the ultimate sacrifice on June 6th, 1918 near Soissons, France.

[6]A tribute to the bravery and gallantry of these men is in order.

Flanders Poppy on the First World War battlefields.

In Flanders Field

By George McCrae

May 1915

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow,

In Flanders Field


Lest we forget!

On the following page is pictured a wounded Leonard John Medlicott and his brother George Hollyoake Oliver Medlicott in uniform. John Leonard Medlicott (1891-1916) was also an unfortunate casualty of the Great War.

Leonard John  wounded and George Medlicott

To the point of this exercise, Daisy May Medlicott married George Chilton and they had at least one child-JOHN DAVID WILLIAM CHILTON. In terms of his relationship to my wife, Joan Elaine Medlicott, it would be necessary to consult a family relationship chart and examine in greater detail the connection. It is clear however, that they have a common ancestor in John Medlicott (Alice Chapman) and that a cursory examination would suggest that they are 14th or 15th cousins, once or twice removed.

As noted earlier, I understand that John David William Chilton continues to reside in Shropshire and I take great pride in establishing the genealogical connection and hopefully answering some unanswered questions concerning his heritage. My hope is that someday soon, my wife (Joan Elaine Medlicott) and I will be able to travel to this part of England and meet this newly discovered relative and stand and revel in the birthplace of the surname-MEDLICOTT.

Finally, and by no means least, I have solved the mystery and answered and placed in historical and genealogical perspective-Isaac? Of Pulverbatch

William J Anhorn QC ICD.d

December 5th, 2017


[1] Sarah Mitchell email 01/11/2017 enquiring about the Medlicott family connection to her friend John David William Chilton

[2] Stemmata Botevilliana: memorials of the Families of De Boteville, Volume 1

[3] Anhorn, William “ The Medlicott Family History-A Family of Knights Lords and Ladies”

[4] Anhorn, William “ A Dream Come True”-Joan Elaine Medlicott and Her Relationship with Lady Diana Spencer, Princess of Wales and “Who’s in Your Family Tree?” go to wjanhorn.ca

[5] Medlicott, Henry Edmondstone at www.fam.medlicott.uk.com

[6] Anhorn, William, “The Canadian Connection to the Medlicotts of Shropshire”