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Archiver > GILLAM > 1998-12 > 0912618330

From: Elizabeth Gilliam< >
Subject: Re: Gillam ancestors - DeGuillahame??
Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 10:05:30 -0700

Roberta Keller apparently typed:

>Dear List,
>I'll do this again and hope it is right this time.
>Has anybody out there heard the account of the change of name from
>DeGuillahame to Gilliam, Gillham, Gillam, etc.?
>My Mom married a Gilliam and some of the older folk in the family told her
>that their ancestors came here by ship from England. Three brothers:
>William, Richard, and John DeGuillahame. They agreed together to drop the
>De off their name. Then they each one took a different spelling for the
>rest of the name.
>Would appreciate hearing anything you may know about this.
>Thank you.
I have been driving myself insane over this. I have seen posted many
times a link to the Devereux family, who were lords of Hereford. Still,
I haven't been able to trace how "Gilliam" evolved from "Devereux" and
"Herbert" (the Hereford families).

I have it from the list owner that the three brothers of which you speak
landed in Virginia in 1614 aboard the ship "Constance". They were sons
of Sir Richard Devereaux Gilliam, supposedly son of Walter, Viscount
Hereford. Problem is, Walter's surname is HERBERT.

So I started researching the royal families of Hereford and found
something interesting - a link with the Welsh which *may* explain things.

The Welsh used "ap" for "son of" and "verch" for "daughter of", so we can
find "Gwenlian Verch Howel" or "Evan Ap Adam".

This link shows a Thomas Ap Guillem HERBERT. Another thing to keep in
mind is that eventually the father's last name stopped changing, and
multiple generations used one ancestor's name as their surname. Thomas'
children were not named "ap Thomas" but were also named "ap Guillem" -
except the one who became the Count of Hereford, William Ap Thomas

I'm thinking that somewhere, they kept the family name of Guillem. Now,
being aristocrats, they probably didn't want to keep "ap" -- but changed
it to "de". That's just conjecture, but it happened often. The language
of the court was French then, remember.

So we have:
Thomas Ap Guillem HERBERT
son, William Ap Thomas HERBERT
son, William HERBERT -- who married a woman named Anne DEVEREUX

OK, the plot thickens. But I haven't been able to dig past this. The
HERBERT and DEVEREUX families were all in Herefordshire, and
intermarrying would make sense.

I am planning on purchasing Burke's Peerage book to find more about the
lords/barons of Hereford.

Unfortunately, there are many links that skip a few hundred years
in-between. Here is what someone recently sent me:

"Descendants of Count De Guillaume:
Generation No. 1: Count De Guillaume
child: Walter Viscount Gilliam
Notes for Walter Viscount Gilliam:
Viscount of Hereford; Descendent of Counte de Guilliaume of France.
Spelling changed when the family moved to England after the Battle of
Hastings, 1066. Since he was a supporter of William the Conqueror of
(William I of England), he was granted a Coat of Arms by William. See
Titled Nobility of Europe.
child of Walter Viscount Gilliam: Sir Richard Devereaux Gilliam
b. Gravesend, Kent, England. Married Lady Dorothy
HERBERT, dau. of the Earl of Pembroke.

Now there are a couple of problems with this: 1) I can find no other
"Viscount Gilliam" in any peerage listing in print 2) If "Count de
Guillaume" was one of William the Conqueror's soldiers, he was alive in
1066. If this Walter is supposed to be the father of Sir Richard
Devereaux Gilliam, father of the three brothers who moved to Virginia in
1614... well, do the math.

But then again, there's the Herbert name, with a different Gilliam link
(maybe after two hundred years, the families intermarried again, and
they'd kept the Devereux and Gilliam names)... Like I said, it's driving
me insane.

anyone have suggestions?


Elizabeth "Prances with Fishhooks" Gilliam


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