Select Herrick Miscellany



Here are some Herrick stories and accounts over the years:

The Ancient Family of Ericks


Dean Swift, whose father had married Mrs. Abigail Erick of Leicestershire, recounted the following about the origins of the Herrick family in Leicestershire:

"There is a tradition that the ancient family of the Ericks derive their lineage from Erick the Forester, a great commander who raised an army to oppose the invasion of William the Conqueror.  He was vanquished; but afterwards he was employed to command that Prince's forces and in his old age he retired to his house in Leicestershire where his family has continued ever since.

We learn from ancient writings that the Erricks were seated at Great Stretton in Leicestershire, in that respectable line of life, so justly the pride of an Englishman, being free tenants of their own lands, two virgates of which they held under the Abbey of Leicester on the payment of an annual quit rent to the king of a pound of pepper."
 

Sir William Herrick of Beaumanor

In 1598 Sir William Herrick, in recognition for services rendered, obtained from Queen Elizabeth, by letters patent under the Great Seal, a grant of the manor of Beaumanor in Leicestershire. 

His picture at Beaumanor showed him with a picked beard, a large ruff, and in a white satin doublet which he used on Christmas Day when attending the Queen.  He wore a sword and over his dress hung loosely a large black cloak.  His plaited ruffles were closely turned back over his sleeves.  In one hand were his gloves, the other, elevated to his breast, held the stump and tassells of his ruff.

Sir William lived to be ninety seven.  Towards the end of his life he suffered at the time of the Civil War and his fortune was much impaired.  He died in 1652 and was buried at St. Martin's church in Leicester.  His gravestone is to be found against the north wall of the choir.


Robert Herrick's Famous Poem


Robert Herrick was a Restoration poet, probably the most popular of his day.  The opening stanza of his most famous poem, To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time. reflected the mood at that time.

"Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old Time is still a-flying;
And this same flower that smiles today,
Tomorrow will be dying."



Herricks in the 1881 Census

County
Numbers
Percent
Lincolnshire
   114
   28
Leicestershire
    81         
   20         
Surrey
    62
   15
Nottinghamshire
    58
   14  
Elsewhere
    95
   23
Total
   410
  100

Lincolnshire had surpassed Leicestershire as the home of most Herricks by the time of the 1881 census.


Henry Herrick of Salem

In 2000 Richard Leon Herrick discovered that Henry Herrick of Salem could not be the fifth son of Sir William Herrick of Beaumanor and that there were in fact two Henry Herrick immigrants at that time, Henry of Salem and a Henry Herrick who lived in Virginia as early as 1642 and as late as 1653. 

One reason why there must have been two Henry Herricks was that, on June 28, 1653, Henry Heyricke of Virginia sent a letter to his brother, John Heyricke in England.  However, on the very same day Henry Herrick of Salem served on an Essex grand jury.  A single man could not be in Virginia and Massachusetts simultaneously. 

Henry of Virginia may have been related to the Herricks of Beaumanor.  But Henry of Salem, who immigrated there in 1629, certainly was
not.


Herricks in America by Country of Origin

Country
Numbers
Percent
Ireland
   34
   44
England
   33
   43
Elsewhere
   10
   13
Total
   77
  100




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