Sunday, January 16, 2011

Thomas Joyner is Tempting me to Visit Bere Regis, England

I've been researching my Joyner family for the last few weeks and am pretty close to being able to get them uploaded to my Web site. One ancestor in particular is making me want to change my plans from an "efficient" (cheap) summer vacation to one that would be a lot more "educational" (fun).

My grandfather Lloyd "Bo" Williams, his mother Janie E. Williamson Williams
and his grandmother, Mary Elizabeth Joyner Williamson.
My grandfather, Bo Williams' grandmother was Mary Elizabeth Joyner.  Jump back 300 years and you find Thomas Joyner, my 10th great grandfather.


“The Royal Oak” inn in Bere Regis, Dorset, UK.
From 1654 - 1656 Thomas Joyner was the innkeeper of “The Royal Oak” in Bere Regis. His widow, Maude Joyner continued to run the inn after her husband's death until her own death in 1674. It was passed down, staying in the family for many years. Because of the long association with this family the property seems generally to have been known as "Joyners" at least until 1712 when it is referred to by its present name, The Royal Oak.  


St. John The Baptist Church in Bere Regis.
When Thomas died about 1657 in Bere Regis, he was buried at St. John The Baptist Church close to his two previous wives. Later, the church would have a connection with Thomas Hardy's classic book, “Tess of the d'Urbervilles.”

The front cover of an 1892 edition of "Tess of the d'Urbervilles: A Pure Woman Faithfully Presented"
The novel by Thomas Hardy, first published in 1891 initially appeared in a censored and serialised version, published by the British illustrated newspaper, “The Graphic.” Now considered a great classic of English literature, the book received mixed reviews when it first appeared, in part because it challenged the sexual mores of Hardy's day.

In the book of fiction, a poor farmer exploits his daughter's beauty for social advancement. The church and surrounding area is featured in many parts of the book.

Bere Regis is now a large village with one shop, a post office and two pubs. It's close to Puddletown, Tolpuddle and Affpuddle so it sounds like cartoon animals from Beatrix Potter probably live there. 

It's also close to Stonehendge so it a trip would be educational.

I think Thomas Joyner is wanting me to visit.


1 comment:

  1. I know this is an old post. I have enjoyed reading your research on the Joyner family. I too am a descendant from Thomas Joyner, through his grandson William. I would also love to visit Bere Regis. It's been a dream of mine since I discovered that part of my ancestry. Someday... :)

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