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Hadley Genealogy
and Coat of Arms Page

The Elusive Ancestor

I went searching for an ancestor, I cannot find him still.
He moved around from place to place and did not leave a will.
He married where a courthouse burned, he mended all his fences.
He avoided any man who came to take the U.S. Census.

He always kept his luggage packed, this man who had no fame,
And every 20 years or so, this rascal changed his name.
His parents came from Europe. They should be on some list
of passengers to the U.S.A., but somehow they got missed.

And no one else in this world is searching for this man.
So, I play geneasolitaire to find him if I can.
I'm told he's buried in a plot, with tombstone he was blessed;
but the weather took engraving, and some vandals took the rest.

He died before the county clerks decided to keep records.
No family Bible has emerged, in spite of all my efforts.
To top it off, this ancestor who caused me many groans,
Just to give me one more pain, betrothed a girl named JONES!

forwarded by Tom Nash

General Hadley Information

The name Hadley is found in several of England's counties including Suffolk, Middlesex, Hertford, Stafford, and Somerset. It is a place name and most authorities on British surnmaes agree that "Hadley" is compounded of two old Anglo-Saxon words which mean "a wild heath where cattle graze." Since people also gave their family name to places of residence, we also see names such as Monken-Hadley in Middlesex, and Williton-Hadley and Withycombe-Hadley in Somerset. The latter is derived from Alexander Hadley and his descendants, who held these and other manors in Somerset.

Some of the early forms of Hadley include de Haddeleigh, and de Haddesley. Later, Cadogan de Hadley simplified the spelling. This was retained by his descendants who held Bulkley in Cheshire. Another form that has been found is Hadleigh and as early as the fourteenth century as Hadley or Hadly. These forms were continued in Ireland where the name has never been common. When the Quaker Hadley's went from Ireland to Pennsylvania in 1712, both of the forms Hadley and Hadly were used by members of the same family.

There is much information on the Somerset Hadleys which can trace their ancestry to King Edward I. However, no record has been found which specifies which particular member of this family went from England to Ireland and became the ancestor of the Hadleys who were in Kings County, Ireland, at a later date.

For many years preceding the Cromwellian invasion of Ireland, there had been much travel and intercourse between Somerset and Ireland. Representatives of many Somerset families, realted to the Hadley's by blood or marriage, bought lands in Ireland and became permanent residents there. Others went to Ireland as governmental and military officers. Tradition says that the ancestor of the Quaker Hadley's went to Ireland from Somersetshire, he was an officer in the English army and he married Catherine Talbot in Ireland. ??

The Hadley coat of arms has been in use at least four hundred years. This graphic was originally scanned from a sticker my grandfather, Lyle H. Hadley, used to put inside the front cover of his books to identify them. I don't know who drew the original line graphic for the book plates.

My grandfather and grandmother operated the Hadley drug store in Madison, Kansas until they retired and moved to Florida around 1960. (The original soda fountain from the store was moved to the New Bell restaurant in Towanda, Kansas, but was left behind when the restaurant moved down the street recently.)

I colored the graphic pretty much like an oil painting my Aunt Kathleen did, which used to hang in my grandfather's house. Here is an excerpt from an October 1973 letter he sent me, concerning documentation:

"Kathleen deviated a bit from custom when she painted this coat of arms. It really doesn't matter since there are no laws or regulations concerning such matters in America. Only the shield is what counts. The rest is window dressing. Ordinarily only the two colors on the shield would be used in the mantle and the motto.

Sir Richard Carney, Ulster King of Arms 1683-1692, described the Hadley arms thus: Gu (red), three round buckles ar (silver), two and one. At that date they had been in use in Ireland well over a century.

About that motto - I am still confused. Years ago a catholic priest, Father Portelance, who was born in France, told me that it meant "strike."... The falcon is supposed to indicate Anglo-Saxon defiance to the French conquerors. If so, a French motto seems incongruous."

(My own checking here at the University of Kansas bears out the likelyhood that the intended meaning of Ferez is "Strike." Or, as we might say today, "Kick Ass.")

If you're a Hadley and need a copy of the Coat of Arms for your letterhead or web site, feel free to grab the one above. I also have this graphic in black and white, the original line drawing scan, as a much larger .gif and as an Adobe Illustrator file.
Click here to download a copy of the line drawing, a 46k .gif file.
Click here to download a copy of the line drawing, a 166k .ai file.

My grandfather spent much of his adult lifetime tracing down his lineage. The biggest single collection of genealogical information, the library for family research in Salt Lake City operated by the Mormons, acquired over eighty pounds of paper documentation for their database from my grandfather. The documents he provided, old birth certificates, death notices, court records, etc. were microfilmed and are available in the library.

He was able to trace our family back to Simon Hadley, who came here to the colonies in 1712 from Ireland, settling in Philadephia (the year after the death of his father, Simon, and two years after the death of his mother, Catherine [Talbot]). As for Simon's previous life in Ireland, not much is known. He apparently came there from England not too long before. Check out John Hadley's documentation on my email page.

Hadleys were early descendents of Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, where Simon's house built in the early 1700s is still in use, and of Indiana, where one of my great-great (etc.) uncles, Paul Hadley , designed the state flag.

Indiana state flag; click for details

Because this page has attracted the attention of a few people who have written me, and sent me interesting information, I'd like to make those notes available, too. Maybe I will someday find the time to assemble a serious Hadley Genealogy page, but for now, this information will just be posted for your information.

Hadley genealogy email and links from visitors

Jim Hadley's collection of English and Irish Hadley Coats of Arms

Click here to E-mail Art .
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December 17, 2001