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The History of our Dalton Family in Witney, Oxfordshire, England


R N D Hamilton writes in the (Dalton Genealogical Society Journal) that there is some debate about this Dalton family and of the three Walter Dalton’s from Witney and Curbridge. (Vol. 16 No. 1) He also tells us of a William Dalton will, dated, June 16th, 1563 - Witney, Oxfordshire. How this William Dalton connects to the 1st Walter Dalton, if at all is not known. He also writes about an Andrew Dalton who he thinks may have also been the father of Walter I.

He writes in Vol. 16 No. 2 page 31;
“The most important common ground is that there were three Walters, father, son and grandson” and “Mrs. Leaning in her Dalton Book was aware of the various discrepancies, which she describes as ‘impossible to reconcile’ and I have given up, the only certain conclusion that there were at least three generations of Walter Dalton's in Witney”

In respect to the late Mr. Hamilton, who did a masterful job of researching our Dalton family in Witney, Oxfordshire, I have reached the following conclusion, about who the father of this first Walter of Witney really was. I believe his father was Roger Dalton of Lancashire, son of William, but proving this point is like the same problem the American Dalton’s had in proving that Thomas Dalton, 1731, was the Thomas Dalton that John Luther Dalton says was his great grandfather from Wales. DNA tests proved that Thomas was the right man! Hopefully some day a DNA test of someone in the Oxford/Witney area will prove this Roger connects us to the Thurnham Dalton’s. I will further research the Dalton family in Witney as time permits. Rodney Dalton.

To expand on this point of Roger Dalton being the father of Walter Dalton I, I went back and re-read the original notes that John Luther Dalton wrote in his research journal in 1889. He wrote that Roger Dalton married Mary Ward and they had a son named Walter. So what I make of this is that as far back as 1889, before these 20th Century researchers were born, our John Luther tells us that Walter is the son of Roger Dalton. The problem is that he did not give any source of this information.

The descendent's of Roger Dalton of Lancashire:

So lets discuss one of the mysteries of how the descendants of Roger Dalton of Thurnham Hall & Pilling, moved from Lancashire to Witney, Oxfordshire, if he did. First we do know that Roger was a wealthy landowner and held much property in Lancashire. His first son, Walter I was born in 1552 in Pillings and died in Witney in 1628. How did this Walter get to Witney? Did his father send him there when he was old enough to run a woolen business, which was a booming enterprise in Witney at the time or did Roger Dalton himself live there and owned land to raise sheep in the area?

We have as yet found no mention of a Roger Dalton in the Witney records, although there may be something about him. Our Dalton history tells us Roger Dalton died in Holborn, London around 1693. Did he live there at the time or was he there while on business from the Witney/Curbridge area. Further research is needed on this point.

In Volume 14 No. 1 of the DGS Journal, RND Hamilton discuses the connection of Roger Dalton. He writes “The next three successions in the Junior Dalton line after Roger, or any issue of his, have, according to family tradition, been the three Walter Dalton's of Curbridge in the parish of Witney, Oxfordshire.”

A pedigree of the Thurnham Dalton line shows only three sons and one daughter; Robert, Thomas, Richard & ? Another pedigree by Sir Lleweyn Dalton shows Item 14. “Roger Dalton, third son of the preceding William married Mary Ward of Lancashire and was living 21, Jan. 1580.

(a) Walter of whom see below.

(b) Jone, baptized at Witney 16, Dec. 1589.

We start this chapter with Roger Dalton’s first son, Walter I, the first of three.

14 - WALTER DALTON I; the first son of Roger Dalton was of Curbridge, in the parish of Witney in Oxfordshire and was born in 1552 in the last year of the reign of King Edward VI, he died aged 67 in 1628.

Source: Compilation of this research by Mr. Rodney Dalton of Ogden, Utah. His collection of historical family documents comes from several sources including, the Dalton Genealogical Society (of England); Mrs. Leaning's book; the Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah; and assorted deeds, wills, county records, etc. from England & Wales.

During the time the Dalton family lived and worked in Oxfordshire, some of them become merchants and tradesmen. Books that mention our Dalton's show them as mercers.

The trade structure in Witney Parish in 1545 to 1610 lists Walter Dalton as a Mercer and haberdasher.

"The word "Mercer" comes from the French word for merchant. In medieval times the Company was at the centre of the commercial life of the City and the development of overseas trade; individual Mercers exported wool and woolen cloth, and imported linen and luxury fabrics such as silk, velvet and cloth.

Since the Middle Ages, Witney was famous for the manufacturing of blankets using water from the River Windrush, which so the story goes, was the secret of their quality.

Walter Dalton I was born in Pillings, Lancashire England in 1552, a son of Roger Dalton and Mary Ward. Walter married No. 2, Margaret, (unknown). Walter and Margaret had seven children:

1. Walter II, 1582.

2. Edward, 1584, maybe went to Ireland or to America.

3. Jone, 1585.

4. Andrew, 1588.

5. Elizabeth, 1586. Who died and was buried on Dec. 8th, 1587 in Witney.

6. Leonard, 1595.

7. Elizabeth, 1597, married Thomas Richard.

8. Lettise, 1604

Of note is that in the research conducted by Rodney Dalton, this Walter Dalton had a first wife named Joane. This could explain the problems with the “Wills of the Walter Dalton’s – see below

Our Dalton pedigree shows that wife; Margaret Dalton was born in 1555 in Lancashire and died before 1619 in Witney, Oxfordshire.

When Roger Dalton’s first son, Walter moved to Witney, Oxfordshire, we are not sure but he shows up in the 1586 court records of the village of Witney. These records where we find this Walter Dalton, is in the book “Calendar of the Court Books of the Borough of Witney, 1538-1610.” by the Oxfordshire Record Society.

Of note is that Rodney Dalton copied the records of this Walter Dalton from the book mentioned above that is at the LDS FHL in Salt Lake City. (942.57 B40 V.54)

Walter Dalton was a Bailiff, Constable and Court Official of Witney, starting from the first listing, Dec. 2nd, 1586 to the last listing on April 11th, 1608.

Here are some of the listings that are in the book. There are 30 or more entries listing

Walter Dalton, with his name spelled in different ways.

Court held 2 Dec. 1586 by Peter Ranckell, bailiff, with Henry Jones, deputy,

John Clarcke the other bailiff, with the constables, the sergeant of arms and other commoners.

Order: by the bailiffs with consent of all the other magistrates above mentioned, that

brewers and tipplers to sell indoors ale and beer at 1d a quarter outdoors a thirdendell at 1d. on pain of 6d.

Collectors for the poor: Walter Dallton and Robert Baker chosen for the following.

Court held 6 Oct. 1587 by Thomas Bisshoppe and Roger Willsheere, bailiff, with the constables, the wardsmen, the sergeant and other bailiffs, Perter Rankckel,

Henry Jones, Thomas Clempson, John Collier and many commoners.

Constables; Humfrey, Walter Dallton.

Wardsmen; Andrew Hodson, Rowland Lacon, Thomas Bramley, Richard Puisley.

Cardsmen; Ralph Tackett, Richard Fickett.

Leather sealers and searchers; William Gunne, John Wylye.

Court held 17 Jan. 1589 by the bailiffs with the constables, Phipip Boxe, Thomas Bisshoppe and divers commoners Agreed; between Walter Dallton and Richard Shewell that whereas Shewell bought from Dallton the slated penthouse which stands on the street side of Shewell’s dwelling house and adjoining the house, Walter Dallton promised to repay the 20s. received if Shewell or his heirs cannot enjoy the penthouse at the end of his lease of the house. (signed) Walter Dallton.

Court action; Subsity men inhabiting within the borough of Witney and there assessment.

In land; Thomas Boxe 6 pounds, 13 others.

In goods; Walter Dalton 5 pounds, 12 others.

Assessers of the above rates: John Clarke.

MD a possession; given 11 April 1608 by Henry Rankle of Witney, clothier, by his attorney Walter Dawlton of Witney, mercer, of all his messuage or tenement in Witney on the east side of the High St. between the tenement of Giles Palmer on the north and that of Richard West on the south, with all houses, edifices, buildings, backsides, orchards, gardens and closes thereto belonging and all other things mentioned in the deed dated 5 April to Walter Flude and Francis Bridges of Adderbury to have and to hold according to the meaning of the said deed and as by one letter of attorney made for Rankle to Dawton for the true execution of hereof under his hand and seal, dated 11 April 1608.

Witnesses: (signatures of) Thomas Yate, bailiff.

Note: In the above F.133r: Second line:

It shows that “Walter Dawlton of Witney, mercer”.

As we see by these records that our Walter Dalton was very involved in the court system of town of Witney.

The following was also copied from the book: Calendar of the Court Books of Witney 1538-1610, by The Oxfordshire Record Society.

Page 152 No. f.325r.

Court held on Oct. 19, 1597.

"Walter Dawlton of Witney, mercer, bought of Edward Lambard of Burton-on-the Heath; Four calves, one black being an ox calf chopped on the further ear, one red calf with no mark, one black calf under hit on the near ear, one other black calf slit on the near ear, price 40s."

In the introduction of the same book, "The Dalton's were 16th, Century Mercers in Witney and London, were woolmen"

Witney's History:

Witney is a little market town some twelve miles from the town of Oxford, which was the hub of this whole area. Witney stands on a bend of the river Windrush. At the entrance of the town there was an enormous Norman Arch that our three Walter Dalton’s must have passed under, going back and forth from town to town. Further down through the town is a wide old fashion street called “Corn Street’ that turns off in a westerly direction, about a half hours walk on this street which turns into a county road, is Curbridge, the little farm village that our Dalton’s farmed. To the north of Witney, across the river, lay the forest of Wychwood, an ancient royal forest. It was the privilege of the men of Curbrigde and surrounding towns that they should have several days leave to hunt in the forest. But when the “Black Death” became dangerous in 1593, the right was exchanged for a gift of venison. Witney had a population of about 1,800 at the time of the Great Civil War — when the town suffered at the hands of the marauding Royalists.

The bishops of Winchester were Lords of the Manor of Witney since before 1200 AD until the Dukes of Marlborough in the 19th century. These bishops therefore held temporal sway over Witney and Curbridge. They granted charter rights to the town making it the Borough of Witney and established the borough court as a court for civil actions not involving more than 40s (a considerable sum in those days) and for carrying out certain local government functions in the borough. The court was presided over by one or both of two bailiffs elected yearly, who were the principal citizens of the town. The nearest modern equivalent is perhaps mayor. There was also, as there was for other local courts, a sergeant, or sergeant at mace, who would carry out certain of the orders of the court and act as mace bearer.. Walter Dalton I was elected as a bailiff for the year on the 8th October 1591, on the 7th October 1597 and on the 7th October 1603. A William Dalton was acting as sergeant in 1554 and in 1558. The two court books which are transcribed in the Calendar survived in the possession of the Rector and Vestry of Witney Parish Church until they were deposited by them in the Bodleian Library, Oxford (Calendar p xi).

The country part of the manor, which included Curbridge, outside the borough, came under the jurisdiction of the bishops' manor court held by his steward. This court was concerned mainly with transactions in land. Records of this court with references to the Daltons (Calendar p lxxxviii) have also survived.

So the temporal care of Witney and the rural part of the manor outside the town rested with the bishops of Winchester. But spiritually they were within the diocese of Lincoln until 1542 and under the care of the bishops of Lincoln. In that year the Oxford archdeaconry was removed from Lincoln diocese to form the diocese of Oxford with its own bishops.

The little settlement of Curbridge, a few miles west of Witney, in the sixteen century

was a little group of farms, a village alehouse and a forge. There was also an area called Curbridge Downs where races were held. To the south were thousands of acres of common lands, a paradise for wild fowl and game. To the northwest on the main road was the town of Burford. The towns of Witney, Curbridge and Burford were on the main route from London to South Wales. The Dalton’s of Witney and Curbridge must have conformed to whatever the ruling powers of the day required.

The town of Witney had three tribulations in the sixteen century when our Dalton’s lived there. The first was the plague followed by famine and then economic distress.

World famous for the manufacture of blankets, especially in North America where the Witney Point blankets were traded in exchange for furs, the town owes its prosperity to the wool trade.

The place name means “Witta’s Island” and was important as the Council of Saxon Kings met here, this was known as the Wittan. It then developed under the patronage of the Bishop of Winchester who built his palace here, and the ruins can still be seen today.

The huge triangle of Church Green was originally laid out as the first medieval market place and from that time on wool was linked to the town’s fortunes. The weaving industry built up with several families expanding their operations including Earlys, which has a factory operating today

The Parish Church of St. Mary's, Witney was founded in 1243 and the Bishop of Winchester had his Palace nearby. It was this fact and the affluence of the wool merchants in the Middle Ages, which resulted in the very large building. The dominant spire may be seen for miles around.

Something about the wool trade in 14-16th, Century England:

The native sheep of England had been a variety of long haired sheep and short haired sheep. The short haired sheep produce the shorter length fine wool that was made into woolens in Flanders and sold as far abroad as the southern Mediterranean region since the crusades. The long haired wool, which, when spun, was known as worsted, was much coarser and was generally used for the poorer-quality wool’s like russet. Long wool was exported, but in very small quantities and without much demand. Until the end of the 1360's Britain was exporting huge amounts of raw wool for processing on the Continent in Ypres, Ghent and Bruges. After that, the wool producers started to look for sheep that gave good wool, and also tasty mutton. The greater mercantile opportunities from the hundred year’s war and the Black Death accelerated this business attitude in the 16th century. Many of the native short haired sheep were replaced, in the hills, mountains, and low pastures throughout England, Scotland, and Wales. The long haired sheep just seemed to adept better and breed better than the short haired sheep, and, being bigger, they gave more mutton. (As a side note, the English never managed to get the best of both worlds, the bigger sheep had tougher and fattier mutton that never tasted as good, and of course the wool was very coarse.) Soon almost all shor thaired sheep had disappeared with the effect that high-quality woolens were mainly replaced by coarse worsteds. There were complaints of the quality of woolens that were not as fine as they had been from the late fourteenth century onward. By the sixteenth century, England exported almost entirely worsteds.

Retail Trades; Generally wealthier than such craftsmen were retailers, in particular those associated with the cloth industry such as mercers, haberdashers and drapers. In the late 16th and early 17th century mercers and haberdashers such as Richard and William Clempson (d. 1602 and 1608) or Walter Dalton were taxed on as much as or more than leading clothiers, reflecting an apparent expansion in retailing since the early or mid 16th century.

The Will of Walter Dalton:

The following abstract of Walter Dalton's will was taken from the Index Vol. Arch. & Con. Oxford 1516-1732 A- J, Series. 1, Vol. 6. No. 40, Will of Walter Dalton, Mercer, 15 Nov 1628: house in Witney with a small holding in Curbridge.

"1627, 5th of October. 40s to the poore, Mentioned: My son Andrew Dalton ... his brother Edward..his brother Leonard .... My grandsons, William Creake and George Creake. My daughter Jone Dalton. Elizabeth Dalton, my now wife, Walter Dalton, my grandchild, the son of Walter Dalton."

Note: According to the above will, Walter's second wife's name was Elizabeth. The will also mentions two grandsons named William and George Creake; obviously one of his daughters married a Mr. Creake. I would eliminate Jone as being their mother because the will specifically calls her Jone Dalton (not Joan Creake). His daughter Elizabeth is not mentioned, so she must be deceased and could possibly be the mother to the two Creake boys; however, the John Dalton Book by Mark Ardath Dalton says Elizabeth married a Thomas Richard. One other possibility is that there was another, as yet unidentified, daughter.

Walter Dalton is probably buried in the Churchyard of St. Mary's in Witney. The Parish Church of St. Mary's was founded in 1243 and the Bishop of Winchester had his Palace nearby. It was this fact and the affluence of the wool merchants in the Middle Ages, which resulted in the very large building. The dominant spire may be seen for miles around.

In our pedigree of the Dalton Family, Walter Dalton I died in Witney sometime in the year of 1628.

More will be added to Walter Dalton’s history his Witney, Oxfordshire period in the future.

15- WALTER DALTON II; the first son of Walter Dalton I was of Curbridge and was born in 1582 and died, aged 68 in 1650 leaving issue by Elizabeth his 2nd, wife:

1. Walter III, born 1603, Curbridge.

2. Charles, born 1605, Curbridge.

3. Elizabeth, born 1609, Curbridge, died unmarried.

4. Thomas, born 1611, Curbridge, supposed to have gone to America.

5. William, born 1614, Curbridge.

6. Andrew, born 1616, Curbridge, married Rebecca Skinner of Witney 21st Oct 1639.

7. Johanna, born 1618, Curbridge, married J. Hoskyns.

CURBRIDGE, a hamlet in the parish of WITNEY, hundred of BAMPTON, county of OXFORD, 2¼ miles (W. S. W.) from Witney.

The above Charles, Thomas, and William were killed at the Battle of Worcester in 1651, fighting for King Charles II. At this battle there were ten brothers, cousins, nephews and uncles killed. The above Andrew returned to Witney and had issue, whose descendant held land at Curbridge and lived there till 1859 when William Dalton, the last of this branch, died and his property was sold and divided amongst his nieces. Colonel Thomas Dalton of Thurnham Hall, Lancashire and his relative Colonel Hoghton of were killed at the second battle of Newbury.

Battle of Newbury

Notes on the Second Battle of Newbury:

Date: 27th October 1644

Location: Newbury, Berkshire

Parliamentarian Commander: Edward Montague, Earl of Manchester

Royalist Commander: Charles I, King of England

Victor: Inconclusive

Charles I had not managed to re-engage the remainder of Sir William Waller's army, and Waller withdrew to Basingstoke. Here he combined with Manchester on Oct 17th. Charles then deployed defensively to the North of Newbury, hoping that the parliamentarians would not engage their strong position, allowing Prince Rupert to rejoin them. Manchester responded to this by deploying along Clay Hill ridge, to the Northeast. He then sent out patrols to gauge the royalists' strength (Oct 25).

Not much information was gleaned, although it was obvious that the royalists were well dug in. Some artillery exchanges occurred whilst the commanders discussed the position.

It was decided that Waller would take his army, which comprised some two thirds of the total strength, on a night out-flanking maneuver, a good 15 miles in length. Manchester would then attack simultaneously, catching the royalists from both sides.

This was very risky, since it divided their force critically, and was difficult to co-ordinate but could prove decisive if it caught the royalists unaware. Despite the risks, Waller set out on Oct 26th. Waller surprised a royalist outpost early on the 27th, and defeated it after a fight. The royalists now were aware that their rear was threatened, but appeared not to consider this a serious threat, since nothing was done to reinforce the West.

Manchester attacked fairly early in the day, but was repulsed easily by a swift counter-attack. It wasn't until the afternoon that Waller deployed to the West of the royalist positions. Waller's attack took Prince Maurice by surprise, but favorable terrain allowed the royalists to beat back the initial assault. Waller attacked again, and this time pushed forward into the village of Speen.

Sir William Balfour routed the royalist cavalry in the South, and a counter-attack by The Earl of Cleveland was repulsed. Further advance was hindered by fire from Donnington castle, which was above them to the north.

Oliver Cromwell, however, was beaten back on the northern flank, hindering the progress of the infantry. Manchester then attacked in the East, with some success initially. However, a counter-attack was organized and it drove Manchester's smaller force back. Night had fallen by now, and the fighting died down. Both sides were unhappy with the events of the day, with the royalists between two forces, and the parliamentarians having suffered heavy losses.

Charles decided that his position was untenable, and organized the withdrawal of his army by moonlight towards Oxford. Waller and Cromwell were keen to pursue Charles in the morning, but Manchester decided that the army was not up to it, and Charles was allowed to continue unmolested.

Notes about the Cavalry unit that Col. Thomas Dalton put together for this second battle of Newbury:

Cavalry regiments were about 400 men strong, although there was much variety between regiments. These would have been divided into six troops of 60-70 men each.

Cavalry troopers usually wore armor in the form of back and breastplates, and a pot helmet. Often a buff coat would be worn underneath this, and some kind of thigh protection - perhaps just long leather boots.

Some regiments wore heavier armor, such as Haselrigg's Lobsters who wore full plate. This was expensive and hot, so it was limited to a select few.

Cavalry weapons consisted of a couple of pistols, and perhaps a carbine, plus a sword or cutlass. The pistols would probably be fired only once in the battle, since they were difficult to reload.

During the English Civil Wars, the cavalry tended to fight their own battle. Only when the opposing cavalry had been driven off would the remainder turn and help their infantry. In fact, the royalists were notorious for pursuing a beaten cavalry force for miles, leaving the infantry unprotected on the battlefield. Once the pistols were fired, cavalry were very ineffective against infantry with pike support. Casualties amongst horses were severe, and several troopers got through two or three horses in a single battle.

Before we proceed let’s look at the Symonds Letter:

In the course of last century the Rev. Thomas Symonds of Eynsham near Witney, was collecting material for a History of MSS that fills nine great volumes, now in the Muniment Room of Oxford County Hall, and in Vol. viii. Page 328 is the copy of a letter from Edward Dalton of Dalton and Dunkirk House, dated Mar. 23, 1843. This letter has been printed in two subsequent histories of Witney, that by the Rev. Dr. J.A. Giles, p. 102, published in London, 1852; and that by W. J. Monk, p. 256, published in 1894, and still obtainable in Witney. My copy is made from the Symonds MSS, as it contains a passage in inverted commas which are not shown in either of the printed sources I have referred to, and from whit it would appear that Edward Dalton was quoting from some older record, and that in 1843 he was not aware of any connection with Lawrence Dalton, though he knew of that with the Dalton’s of Thurnham Hall.

“My family was resident Freeholders at Curbridge, in the Parish of Witney, from before 1570 to 1644, when they followed the declining fortunes of King Charles, and suffered grievously at Newbury. During the above period their Names frequently occur in the Parish Registers and Church Books, as Churchwardens, Way Wardens, etc. In Willis Mitred Abbies, Vol. ii, page 188, is this Entry: “A Pension paid to William Dalton, Chantry Priest of Witney, Oxfordshire.” This extract from the preamble to my pedigree shows three descents which James was son of Walter Dalton of Curbridge Court, eldest son of that Walter Dalton who was grievously wounded in the Head, fighting under the Royal Banner at Newbury Battle, where the Chief of his House (Col. Thomas Dalton, who raised the Dalton Regiment of Horse for King Charles, as recorded in England's Bloody Tribunal) was mortally wounded, and died in Marlborough. Also slain in that fight, Charles, Marmaduke, Edward and William Dalton, of this family." I have also hoped to find in some private or public collection some memorial of my family previous to their migrating from Oxfordshire"

Research from the Witney Parish Registers:

Source: From the Dalton Genealogical Society Journal, Vol. 7. Page 23.

When we come to the period in Oxfordshire, the pedigree shows three Walter Dalton’s, all of Curbridge in the parish of Witney with birth dates of 1552, 1582 and 1603.

The first Walter married Margaret and died in 1619. The second Walter, eldest son of the first, married Elizabeth and died in 1657. The third, eldest son of the second, fought for Charles II at Worcester. At the Society of Genealogists Library in London, there is an extensive collection of transcripts of Pariah Registers, often in typescript rather than printed. These give the researcher the opportunity of confirming births, marriages and deaths without the necessity of making the journey to the parish itself. The Witney Parish Registers are found in three volumes as follows:

Baptisms 1551-1837

Marriages 1605-1837

Burials 1583-1837

The following are the extracts from these registers for all Dalton’s, including spelling variants:

Baptisms: DALTON

16 DEC 1589, Jone, dau of Walter

12 DEC 1591, Walter, son of Walter

23 MAR 1595, Leonard, son of Walter

2 OCT 1603, Elyzabeth, dau. of Walter

15 JUN 1604, Lettise, dau. of Walter

6 APR 1650, Thomas, son of Wallter



26 MAR 1586, Elizabeth, dau. Of Walter

21 JAN 1588, Andrewe, son of Walter

3 MAY 1629, Margat, dau. of Andew

12 JUN 1631, Mary, dau. of Andrew

16 AUG 1635, William, son of Andrew

29 JUN 1641, Andrew, son of Andrew

29 MAR 1644, Walter, son of Andrew

13 JAN 1647, John, son of Walter

Marriages: DOLTON

21 OCT 1639 Andrew DOLTON to Alice Skinner

Burials: DALTON

8 DEC 1587 Elizabeth, dau. of Walter

Burials: DOLTON

28 APR 1585, Jone, widdowe

1 MAY 1631, John

18 SEP 1632, Widdow

18 APR 1638, Widdow

21 MAY 1638, Maud wife of Andrew

5 OCT 1643, Elizabeth

The Walter Dalton wills:

(Spelling theirs)

There are two of these preserved at Somerset House. The references are Index Vol. Arch & Cons. Oxford 1516-1732. A-J Ser. II, Vol. v, No. 54, Will of Walter Dalton, Jun 6 Aug. 1623.

First Will:

"Testamentum Walteri Dalton de Wittney xxx day of marse 1623...Walter Dalton the younger...of Wittney, Inkeeper....sicke in bodie butt in good and perfect soule to Almighty God and my bodie to be honorably buried in the churchyard of Wittney...Give to the said church iiis iiid. Item I give to my sonne Walter Dalton twenty poundes at the age of twenty one yeares.

Item I give to my son Robert Dallton twenty markes to be paid at the age of twenty and one yeares. Item to my daughter Ann twenty markes to be paid at the age of twnety one. Item I give to my said wife Joane Dalton all both movably and immovably...I make sole off all debts and funeral expenses."

Second Will:

Series II, Vol. VI No. 40, Will of Walter Dalton-Mercer, 15 Nov. 1628.

“1627, 5th of October. 40s to the poore. Mention of: my sonne, Andrew Dalton … his brother Edward Dalton my son… my grandson William Creake and George Creake…My daughter Jone Dalton…Elizabeth Dalton my now wife… Walter Dalton my grandchild the sone of Walter Dalton”

Witnesses: Thomas Kinge, John Hooker (or Booker)

Some Conflicting Evidence:

A comparison of the data given in the three sources of our genealogy now set forth yields some perplexing results. The death dates show five Walter Dalton’s, dying respectively in 1619, 1623, 1628, 1657, and 1666; to say nothing of the baby Walter b. 1648, who died young, and Walter, son of Andrew, b. 1643. Walter the mercer has a wife Elizabeth, a son Andrew, and had had a son Walter, which tempts us to identify him with the second Walter of the family Bible, but that as he certainly died in 1628, he could not have done so in 1657. There are several other discrepancies, impossible to reconcile and the only certain conclusion being that there were at least three generations of Walter Dalton’s in Witney. There were Dalton landholders there in the early part of the 19th century, who were tenants of the Manor, as the Court Rolls prove; but just what and where they held in the 17th century, have not been able to ascertain. The Steward of the Duke of Marlborough, who is Lord of the Manor, informs me that he has no Rolls going so far back.

The wills of these Walter Dalton’ are very confusing and maybe some day we can make better sense of them (RD)

16- WALTER DALTON III; the first son of Walter Dalton II was born in 1603 in Curbridge, parish of Witney in Oxfordshire, England. After the battle of Worcester in 1651 during the English Civil War, he collected his family and some property and removed into Wales where he died, aged 63 in 1666, and was buried in the Chancel of the Church in Pembrey, Carmarthenshire. Walter Dalton III and his wife, Jane Needham had seven children.

1. Charles, born in 1639, Curbridge, Oxfordshire, England, was buried 23rd Oct 1707, having

had issue by Jane his wife, who died 1 May 17l4, nine children of whom:

2. Thomas, born 1643, Curbridge, died young.

3. Ormonde, born 1645, Curbridge, died young.

4. Walter IV, born 1648, Curbridge, died young.

5. James, born 1650, (our line) Curbridge.

6. Johanna, born 1653, married James Butler.

7. Margaret, born 1657, Pembrey, Wales.

Young Thomas, Ormonde and Walter IV died of the hardships of winter travel suffered while removing into Wales with their father.

This story of Walter Dalton III, who grew up in Curbridge, Oxfordshire England. His father and grandfather, both also named Walter, had settled in the Witney area of Oxfordshire sometime after 1552 when the first Walter come from Lancashire, England.

The only church that these Dalton’s and there families could have attended is the St. Mary the Virgin, in Witney.

The Parish Church of St. Mary's was founded in 1243 and the Bishop of Winchester had his Palace nearby. It was this fact and the affluence of the wool merchants in the middle ages which resulted in the very large building. The dominant spire may be seen for miles around.

Is it possible that some members of our Dalton family could be buried in the Church cemetery? Only a visit to Witney will tell us!

Walter Dalton III seemed to have been a man that was reasonably wealthy when he rode into the littlevillage of Kidwelly. Kidwelly was the seat of government in that region of South Wales. Some of this wealth was from the Dalton family position as businessmen in the Witney Parish. Other riches you will read about in the below text.

Lets start with when Walter was 39 years of age and was caught up in what history calls “The English Civil War.”

You have already read the story of Walter Dalton’s relatives killed in the second Battle of Newbury and where he had three brothers killed in the “Battle of Worcester.”

Walter Dalton III, in the midst of the English Civil War:

When civil war erupted in England in 1642, it quickly involved every level of society throughout the British Isles. On one side the King and his supporters fought for traditional government in Church and State. On the other, the supporters of Parliament sought radical changes in religion and economic policy, and a greater share of power at the national level. No one could be neutral, but family was divided against family, and town against town. Oxford became the Headquarters of the Royalists and the whole of the surrounding area suffered equally. Banbury castle was a Puritan stronghold for the other side.

The Civil War and its aftermath proved somewhat of a disaster for the Dalton Family. The Senior Thurnham Line lost Colonel Thomas Dalton (who died of wounds) at the second Battle of Newbury in l644. John Dalton of the Yorkshire branch died of wounds in the same year. The Irish Dalton’s of County Westmeath were broken as "territorial magnates by the Cromwellian devastation’s". Perhaps, however, the Junior Thurnham Line paid the highest price in the Dalton support of the Royalist cause. The main calamity, which befell this branch of the family, is associated with the Battle of Worcester in 1651 and its consequences.

Witney’s townspeople certainly were familiar with the sight of troops of both sides, though Witney, Curbridge and Burford were not places of actual battles. The army of Royalists was quartered at both places, sometimes with the King in Person.

Our Walter Dalton was right in the middle of all this action. Because of the uncertainly of who would win the war, Walter who was on the Royalist side, decided to sell his land in Curbridge in case the King lost. “The family tradition” says that Walter Dalton gave the money received for the sale into the Kings own hand, in a long leather purse at the top of the stairs at Christ Church in Oxford. The land bought in South Wales with the residue still continues in the family.

We now come to the battle of “Worcester” 9 years after the Second Battle of Newbury where many of the Dalton’s met with terrible defeat. There is also a reason to believe that the events at Worcester played a large part in our Dalton’s survival in South Wales. After the battle of Worcester, it must have been painful and was indeed difficult for Walter to collect his family and goods and journey to the west with them. Curbridge was sold, and the winter lay before him. The King had fled, disguised as the servant of John Ashburnham, who's family would play a large part in the Dalton history later on in South Wales. As with the towns, and the countryside, farms lay desolate and all the homesteads wrecked and dismantled, barns were empty and ruinous.

The Battle of Worcester:

Date: 3 September 1651.

Location: Worcester, Oxfordshire.

Parliamentarian Commander: Oliver Cromwell, General of Horse.

Royalist Commander: Charles II, King of England. (in exile)

Victor: Parliament.

The battle of Worcester on 3 September 1651 was the final act in the series of Civil Wars that had begun in August 1642.

In January 1649 Charles I was executed by Parliament. A year later, his son, Charles II decided to launch a bid to restore his throne by military might. He landed in Scotland and made an alliance with the Covenanter's who had previously supported Parliament. Many on the Parliamentary side were reluctant to fight against their former allies: Fairfax, the original choice of commander refused to serve and Oliver Cromwell was appointed in his place. The Kidderminster preacher, Richard Baxter urged soldiers not to fight in Scotland. The campaign was dogged by sickness and Cromwell himself became seriously ill.

Cromwell recovered in the spring of 1651 and determined not to spend another winter in Scotland. He decided to draw the King's army into Scotland, gambling on the likelihood that few Englishmen would support an invading Scottish army, whatever their feelings for the monarchy. Cromwell was correct, very few Englishmen joined the 11,000 -13,000 strong Scottish army and wavers now flocked to join the parliamentary forces. Thousands joined the militias that were raised up and down the country. As a consequence, this was one of the few campaigns of the Civil Wars that showed any popular enthusiasm. The country knew that this was a chance to strike a decisive blow and restore the country to some form of stability.

As the Scottish army (now totaling up to 16,000 men) entered Worcestershire it was harassed by the local militia who desperately tried to slow up the advance in order to give the garrison of Worcester a chance to improve the defenses of the City and to receive reinforcements.

Local troops under Andrew Yarranton fought a skirmish at Ombersley, just north of Worcester and continued to fight the advancing Scots to the very gates of Worcester. But the resolve of the citizens crumbled as they realized that no reinforcements were forthcoming. The City Council therefore decided to surrender and, to prove (somewhat belatedly) its loyalty to the Royalist cause they fired on the garrison as it retreated to Gloucester. Thus it was that the King entered Worcester on 22 August. But this was simply an act of pragmatism. Few local men joined the Royalist army and the militia joined the main parliamentary army that then gathered around Worcester.

On August 28 part of the parliamentary army crossed the River Severn at Upton. By nightfall, around 12,000 men had assembled there. Another 18,000 men began the march from Evesham to the outskirts of Worcester. Cromwell was in no hurry and ensured that his men were properly rested and supplied before commencing the main battle. The battle may even have been delayed so that it fell on 3 September 1650, the anniversary of his other great victory against the Scots at Dunbar.

At dawn on Wednesday 3 September, the army on the West Bank of the Severn under General Fleetwood began their march towards Worcester, dragging with them pontoons to make bridges that would span the Rivers Teme and Severn. The Scots were unprepared and were slow to send reinforcements to the small number of Highlanders that defended the river plain to the south of Worcester. Even so, they held back the parliamentary army until 3 pm when Cromwell ordered his reserve of crack New Model Army troops across the bridge of boats that spanned the Severn. Retreat became a rout and the lane back to Worcester was lined with the Scottish dead.

In an attempt to relieve the pressure on his men, King Charles attempted to counter-attack on the East Side of the City. A mixed force of Highlanders, Lowlanders and English gentry managed to scale the high ground that overlooked the city and captured some of the Parliamentary gun positions. The parliamentary front line was composed of militia and for a time the battle looked to be in the balance. But the line held and once again. Cromwell was able to save the situation with his New Model Army reserves. The militia now rose. They were determined to annihilate this foreign army that had brought the specter of Civil War back to England. The Essex and Cheshire militias led the charge: the Scottish garrison at Fort Royal was massacred and the Cheshire militia entered the City.

By 6 pm the battle was lost, although parties of Scottish troops and English gentry held out until around 10 pm. The King made a narrow escape, with his retreat covered by two charges of troops under local gentry.

The story of the battle now passes into legend and the escape of the King to the south coast and thence to France has become part of English legend. Less thought has been spared for the fate of the 10,000 Scottish prisoners that were captured. Stripped of all possessions they were herded into prisons all over the country. Many were transported to new England, Virginia and the West Indies to work on the plantations and iron works. Others were sent to work on the drainage schemes of the fens. But, unable to maintain them in prison, eventually the government had simply to release the rest back to Scotland. Many of the English prisoners were conscripted into the army and were sent to Ireland. Charles II fled the battle and eventually made his way to France.

English Civil War Times is published by Partizan Press. 816-818 London Rd.

Added material found about Walter Dalton III & his Worcester experience: December 2008:

The Dalton's at the battle of Worcester; Sept. 1651.

Researched & complied by Rodney G. Dalton from sources noted.

This famous battle during the English Civil War was the end of our Walter Dalton III's time in England. The truth of the matter is he was fighting on the losing side!

During the DGS Gathering in Worcester, England in July of 2007, Tony Spicer was invited to speak about this battle. He had wrote a book about this battle and he researched information from his book as to the whereabouts of Walter Dalton during the battle.

Excerpts from the Volume 47, December 2007 issue if the DGSJ. With some editing of same by Rodney Dalton.

The background:

"Perhaps however the junior Thurnham line paid the highest price in the Dalton support of the Royalist cause. Walter Dalton III joined the invading Scottish army led by Charles II. It is a family tradition he was the paymaster of the army or was associated with that office. With Walter went his younger brother Charles, and William, together with other relations and friends. The Royalist army was routed at the Battle of Worcester in September of 1651. According to one source, "at the battle there were 10 Dalton brothers, cousins and uncles killed". According to family tradition, Walter and a relation, Rowland (Vaughan) escaped from the field laden with the Royal pay chest. He hastily collected his wife and young children to make a getaway to South Wales".

Time & Location of Joining:
When Charles II began his march into England on July 31st. 1651, his army consisted of around 11-12,00 Scots & 2,000 English. These English were ultra loyalists; the men (some Dalton's) who had fought for Charles I in the earlier civil wars with the consequence that their estates had been confiscated.

Relatively few royalists joined Charles II during the march south into England; so i would have thought more likely that Walter III joined up with Charles while he was in Scotland some time after June 1650. The fact that Walter may have been pay master reinforces this view because it is not the sort of post which one would have give to somebody that have just joined in England.

On arrival in Worcester on 23rd August, one of the things Charles did was to open a loan account with the city Council and arrange for it to pay the army's expenses. If Walter Dalton was paymaster, then he is likely to have been involved in the administration of this loan account.

Role in the battle:
The most likely Dalton participation would have been in the attacks on Red Hill and Perry Wood during the battle itself on 3rd September. The battle began on the west side of the River Severn when Fleetwood advanced from Upton and drove the Royalists back to Worcester Bridge. Charles led the attack against Red Hill. If Walter Dalton was paymaster, then one would expect to find him with Charles and his immediate staff. Assuming the family kept together, then one would also expect Walter and the other Dalton's taking part in the attack against Red Hill.

The Royalists took Rill Hill & Perry Wood, but never establishing them selfs. Successive waves of Parliamentary reinforcements forced the Royalists to retreat from both Red Hill & Perry Wood. This retreat soon become a rout and this is where its is thought that most of the Dalton's casualties occurred.

It is very likely that Walter Dalton was one of the Royalists that escaped back into Worcester through the Sudbury Gate. This in itself was a risky situation. The only gate left open was that of St. Martins, to the north of Worcester, through which Charles & the Scottish cavalry escaped and logically Walter Dalton was with them. He then traveled, probably with Rowland Vaughan, to where his family was and they all took the very danger-est & hard trip to South Wales.

What happened to the pay chest:
You would think that Charles would have demanded that Walter give up the pay chest to him at this time, or planed to meet him at a safer place to get th money, but this may not have happened; there is 2 explanations. After the battle, rumors abounded that Charles had left behind a large amount of money when he fled from Worcester. It is said that he dropped his money some where along "Silver Street", but was never found. On the other hand if Walter Dalton had possession of the pay chest and escaped with it, then this would explain why it was never found in Worcester. Do you wonder that Walter Dalton when he arrived in South Wales, he seemed to be a wealthy man; enough to be called a gentleman!

A short history of the Battle of Worcester; (In which you may presume that Walter Dalton III was also along side of King Charles II as part of his staff)


In 1651 Charles II. entered Worcester, and was there proclaimed king of England.

Here, however, Cromwell - who had pursued him from Scotland - attacked him on the propitious anniversary of the battle of Dunbar, September 3rd, 1651. Charles that day held a council of war "upon the top of the College Church steeple, the better to observe the enemies' posture," and perceiving some firing at Powick, and Cromwell making a bridge of boats over the Severn at Burnshill, about a mile below the city, towards Teammouth, instantly descended from his post of observation, ordered the troops to get under arms, and marched in person to Powick Bridge to give orders for defending it, and for opposing Cromwell's attempt to make a bridge of boats; he then returned to the city. His orders were obeyed, and the bridge when assaulted was gallantly defended by Montgomery; but dangerously wounded, and his ammunition spent, the gallant Cavalier was obliged to make a disorderly retreat into Worcester, leaving Colonel Keyth a prisoner at the bridge. The effort to defeat Cromwell's attempt at making the bridge of boats was equally unsuccessful, though Colonel Pitscotty, with his Highlanders, did all that valour and fidelity could effect, in pursuance of his King's commands They were, however, but 300 men opposed to great numbers, and were finally driven back. Cromwell achieved his purpose, took the bridge, and sending over a considerable body of men, with his usual benediction, "The Lord of Hosts be with you," returned to raise a battery of great guns against the fort royal on the north side of the city. Charles, with the Duke of Buckingham, Lord Grandison, and some of his cavalry, then rode through the town, and made a sally at Sudbury Gate by the fort royal, where the balls from the rebels' great guns flew round him. Cromwell was posted at Perrywood, within a mile of the city. Duke Hamilton, with his own troop and some Highlanders, Sir Alexander Forbes, with a regiment of foot, and a body of gentlemen volunteers and English nobles, engaged him here, and forced him to retreat, leaving his guns in their possession. The king charged valiantly at the head of his brave Highlanders, who fought with the butt-ends of their muskets when their ammunition was spent; but the main body of the Scotch horse did not come up to their relief; the English were reinforced, and the Scots were compelled to retreat in much disorder into the town by Sudbury Gate. Duke Hamilton had his horse killed under him, and was mortally wounded; many gentlemen of his name were slain; Sir John Douglas received his death wound; Sir Alexander Forbes was shot through the calves of both legs, and lay all night in the wood. He was brought prisoner to Worcester the next day.

At Sudbury Gate a cart laden with ammunition was overthrown, and lay across the passage, one of the oxen that drew it having been killed; this rendered it impossible for the king to ride into the town, and he was forced to dismount and return on foot. The English soon afterwards stormed the fort royal (the fortifications of which were not finished), and put all the Scots found in it to the sword. On reaching Friar's Street, Charles laid aside his armour, the weight of which oppressed him, and took a fresh horse; then perceiving that many of his foot soldiers were throwing down their arms and declining to fight, he rode up and down among them, with his hat in his hand, entreating them to stand to their arms and fight like men; encouraging them, and alleging the goodness and justice of the cause they fought for; but seeing himself not able to prevail, he exclaimed, "I had rather you would shoot me than keep me alive to see the sad consequences of this fatal day!" "So deep a sense had his prophetic soul of the miseries of his beloved country, even in the midst of his own dangers."

During this hot engagement at Perrywood and Redhill, the Parliamentarians on the other side of the river possessed themselves of St. John's, and the brigade of Royalists stationed there laid down their arms and craved quarter.

But now the enemy had entered the town both at the Key, Castle Hill, and Sudbury Gate, and the fight raged in the streets of Worcester itself. A body of Cavaliers - among whom were the Earl of Cleveland, Sir James Hamilton, Colonels Wogan, Slaughter, and Carlis; Captains Giffard, Astley, and Kemble - rallied what force they could and charged the enemy very gallantly, both in Sudbury Street and High Street. Sir James Hamilton and Captain Kemble, however, fell desperately wounded, and many a brave Royalist went down in that hopeless struggle, but their devotion saved the king by giving him time to escape by St. Martin's Gate.

Meantime the Earl of Rothes, Sir William Hamilton, and Colonel Drummond, maintained the Castle Hill with their Scots till conditions were given for quarter.

At the Town-hall the battle also raged; Mr. Coningsby Colles and many other loyal gentlemen were slain; Mr. Rumney, Mr. Charles Wells, and others, taken prisoners. With them fell the last defenders of Worcester, and the victorious soldiers of the Parliament marched through streets red with the blood of their brethren, as well as of the Scots, to plunder and ravage the town.

When Charles perceived that he could not rally his disordered infantry, he marched out of the city by St. Martin's Gate, as we have said, with his main body of horse, which was commanded by General David Lesley. During the first half-mile's march from Worcester, Charles repeatedly faced about and urged a renewal of the combat, but at the bridge many of the troopers threw down their arms and rode off, and it became evident that there was no hope of retrieving the day. It was then determined that the king should fly to Scotland; but, as is well known, Charles did not abide by this counsel. "The Lord St. Clare, with divers of the Scottish nobility and gentry, were taken prisoners in the town; and the foot soldiers (consisting most of Scots) were almost all either slain or taken, and such of them who in the battle escaped death, lived but longer to die for the most part most miserably, many of them being afterwards knocked on the head by country people, some bought and sold like slaves for a small price, others went begging up and down, till charity failing them their necessities brought on them diseases, and diseases death."

It was six o'clock in the evening when Charles quitted Worcester, and, as day closed in, David Lesley turned his face homeward, and marched northwards by Newport with the remnant of the Scottish horse.

Charles found shelter at Whiteladies, half a mile from Boscobel, and from thence began the series of romantic adventures which ended in his escape from his kingdom to France.

To add to this Walter Dalton III story lets go to the DGSJ, Volume 38, June 2003. Source is Lucy Slater.

Excerpts from this story:
"Walter Dalton was an ardent Royalist and was given the job of looking after the army's pay chest. This chest held money and other valuables. which had been collected by Royalist supporters to pay the Scottish troops as they marched south to Worcester. Walter was helped by his two brothers, Charles & Harold, and his friend Rowland from Wales.

The Battle of Worcester was fought on September 3rd, 1651 in the water meadows below the Cathedral. When King Charles II realized that Oliver Cromwell's men were coming to attack him, he gathered all his forces together on the water meadows. The Cavalries were dressed in their finery, velvet hats with plumes, velvet coats and breeches and silk shirts with lace at the neck and cuffs. Also they had on their long leather riding boots, with high heels and spurs with rowels which clattered on the ground when they tried to walk. (As it turned out, this outfit was bad for them)

The Roundheads had more serviceable clothing; leather jerkins and breeches and leather caps similar to the metal ones worn by jockeys and cricketers today. Hence their name, Roundheads. Also they wore stout leather boots in which they could march for miles. The Cavalry was mainly Prince Rupert's Horse. Rupert was the King's cousin and it was with him that Colonel Thomas Dalton served at the second battle of New Newbury in 1644 and was wounded and died a few days after. There were about 16,000 men on the King's side and 30,000 of Oliver Cromwell's men.

First King Charles charged with his Cavaliers and foot solders at Cromwell's line. They seemed to be doing well at first but somehow Cromwell;s men got behind the Cavaliers and tempted them to turn and ride back into the narrow streets of the city. There the Roundheads shot the Cavalry horses and this forced them to fight on foot. With their fancy riding boots they could neither fight or flee and so were killed in great numbers. It is said that 10 members of the Dalton family were killed in the six hours that this battle lasted, including Walter Dalton's two brothers.

It is fairly certain that Rowland Vaughan who accompanied Walter Dalton to the Battle of Worcester was the Rowland Vaughan of Golden Grove in Wales. Joyce Parker said that Walter was wounded in the battle by being hit on the head with a mace. His wife and children traveled from their home in Curbridge to tend to him after getting word of his wound. Curbridge at this time not being safe because of the Kings defeat. It is not sure when nor where Walter met up with his family, but you can be sure it was a hazardest time trying to avoid captured by the Roundheads.

Rowland went ahead of Walter Dalton and his family to go back to his home in Golden Grove in Wales, near Llandrilo. But before he arrived at his home he was captured by the Roundheads and jailed at Chester. So when Walter managed to follow him to Wales, planning to meet at Golden Grove, he found not a sanctuary for himself and his family, but a burnt-out ruin and a demand of a ransom for Rowland from Cromwell's men at Chester. This must have been a serious problem for Walter, because he could not let the Roundhead capture him, so he must have gave some of the money from the pay chest to one of Rowland's family to go pay this ransom and free him. Lucky is not the word! because the way it turned out both men ended up very properest in South Wales. When Rowland and Walter got to Golden Grove they had to start re-building it. Walter gave Rowland some money to do this, and Rowland with no money of his own to repay him gave some land in Pembrey he owned to Walter.

It is also known by Dalton history that James Dalton, 5th son of Walter & Joyce Vaughan, granddaughter of Rowland Vaughan were married in 1677 in Pembrey.


Another story about Walter Dalton III: The sale of Curbridge.

In the midst of this long strain of war, of which the thousand-fold records have been searched by all our great historians, stands out in a spot-light one single scene in which our Walter Dalton of Curbridge took part:

The splendid Hall of Christchurch, "magnificent alike in its proportions and its decorations" is reached by a great stairway in several flights, the work of a later time; but at the top of the stairs we stand under a ceiling decorated with elaborate fan-tracery, dated 1640; and on this spot the King must have stood on emerging from the Hall to receive the purse. The date of this transaction must lie in 1643 or 1644; but Clarendon states that the commons at Oxford were required to obtain lists of "gentlemen of estate and other persons who were reputed to be rich", and letters were written to them individually asking for contributions proportional to their ability. "By this means there was a sum raised of one hundred thousand pounds, whereof some came in every day". Those who contributed plate had it melted down and minted at the Mint established for that purpose at Oxford. This was in 1643, when almost all expected that a single battle would see the end by giving victory to one side or the other. Little did any imagine that a full seven years of war were to be lived through before any kind of peace would be really possible.

What other Dalton researchers have wrote about Walter Dalton III;
Walter Dalton (1603-1666) the head of the Junior Dalton Line played an active part in the Civil War. He fought at Newbury in the regiment of his cousin Colonel Dalton. Not deterred by Cromwell's victory and the death of the King, he joined the invading Scottish army lead by Charles II. A family tradition is that either he was the paymaster of the Army or he was associated with that office. With Walter went his younger brothers Charles (1605-1651) and William (1614-l651), together with other relations and friends. The Scots and their supporters proved no match for the military genius of Cromwell and the Royalist army was routed at the Battle of Worcester in September 1651. The fight was a exceedingly bloody business even for the Civil war and many Royalists were killed including Walter's brothers, Charles and William. According to one source "at this battle there were ten Dalton brothers, cousins and uncles killed.". According to a verbal family tradition, Walter and a future relation, Rowland, which must be “Rowland Vaughan”, escaped from the field, laden with the royal pay chest. He hastily collected his wife and young children to make a get away to South Wales. The journey lasted into the winter and the conditions were so harsh that three of Walter's children died - Thomas aged 8, Ormonde aged 6 and Walter aged 3. The youngest child, James, aged l, survived and became the ancestor of the Junior Dalton Line and the American Dalton’s of Utah. Walter and his surviving family first stayed at or near one of the estates of the Vaughan’s of Golden Grove. It is obvious that the Civil war had a rather devastating effect on Walter and his family. The number of male Dalton’s was drastically reduced and the young James' chances of survival could not have been rated high in the hard winter of 1651. Yet the family adapted itself, survived and then rebuilt both its numbers and its economic position, quite a remarkable feat in a troubled period of English history.

Farewell to the Midlands: Copied from the re-editing of Mrs. Leaning’s “Dalton” book.
“On what date Walter Dalton looked his last upon Curbridge Court or Witney or the valley of the Windrush, we cannot know, but we know that he left other Dalton’s behind him. Andrew Dalton, son of Walter the mercer, mentioned in his father's will of 1627, is shown by the Parish Register to have married a certain Maud who died in May, 1638; and to have married Alice Skinner in October 1639. He has a son, an infant Walter, born in Feb. 1643. (An Elizabeth Dalton died this year, who may have been the one born forty years before, or more likely Walter the mercer's wife. According to the family Bible, Andrew was born in 1616, and had married Rebecca Skinner of Witney. The baptismal register ends in 1615 and there is a prolonged gap lasting till 1643 which deprives us of any evidence from that quarter. The Walter who went to Wales we understand with his father and mother, already had a son, Charles, now five years old, an a baby Thomas, born 1643, a year old, but who did not live. Whether his brothers Charles and William were the two "of this familye" killed in battle, we cannot know; but it seems as though Andrew was the only Dalton left in Witney at this time.”

Why Walter Dalton, picked the area of south Wales to flee to can be explained on several logical grounds. In short (1) In maps showing the balance of forces in the Civil War, Wales was almost entirely Royalist. And (2) another feature that linked south Wales with Lancashire was the treatment of Catholics...Wales was one of the most Catholic parts of the country at the end of the Tudor period. On the whole then, the sea-board counties of south Wales were very much safer and quieter than any other part of England, and afforded a harbour to those who could reach it. It was fortunate thing for Walter that he had enough resources to establish himself there, for in that epoch we must remember there was no such thing as a bank balance. Money had to be handled as coin or plate, and any quantity had to be conveyed in trunks or chest.

Another version of Walter Dalton’s flight to Wales:

by Mrs. Morag Simpson – Member of the Dalton Genealogical Society.

Copied from the DGSJ – Vol. 6, 1976.

The Civil War and its aftermath proved somewhat of a disaster for the Dalton Family. The Senior Thurnham Line lost Colonel Dalton at the Battle of Newbury in l644. John Dalton of the Yorkshire branch died of wounds in the same year. The Irish Dalton's of County Westmeath were broken as "territorial magnates by the Cromwellian devastation’s." Perhaps, however, the Junior Thurnham Line paid the highest price in the Dalton support of the Royalist cause. The main calamity, which befell this branch of the family, is associated with the Battle of Worcester in 1651 and its consequences.

Walter Dalton (1603-1666) the head of the Junior Dalton Line played an active part in the Civil War. He fought at Newbury in the regiment of his cousin Colonel Dalton. Not deterred by Cromwell's victory and the death of the King, he joined the invading Scottish army lead by Charles II. A family tradition is that either he was the paymaster of the Army or he was associated with that office. With

Walter went his younger brothers Charles (1605-1651) and William (1614-l651), together with other relations and friends.

The Scots and their supporters proved no match for the military genius of Cromwell and the Royalist army was routed at the Battle of Worcester in September 1651. The fight was an exceedingly bloody business even for the Civil war and many Royalists were killed including both Walter's brothers, Charles and William. According to one source "at this battle there were ten Dalton brothers, cousins and uncles killed."

According to a verbal family tradition, Walter and a relation Rowland escaped from the field, laden with the royal pay chest. He hastily collected his wife and young children to make a get away to South Wales. The journey lasted into the winter and the conditions were so harsh that three of Walter's children died - Thomas aged 8, Ormonde aged 6 and Walter aged 3. The youngest child, James, aged l, survived and became the ancestor of the Junior Dalton Line and the American Dalton’s of Utah.

Who were the Vaughan's of Golden Grove? They came first into prominence in the reign of the Welsh Henry VII, when Hugh Vaughan was responsible for attained lands in Wales. He used this position to amass land for his family and acquired the estate of Golden Grove. The possessions of the Vaughan's continued to grow in the next reign with the acquisition of former monastic lands and judicious management. The Vaughan's were also engaged as sleeping partners of South Wales ship owners, both in legal foreign trade and in smuggling, and free booting. Their more respectable activities also flourished; they provided Members of Parliament and Sheriffs for South Wales and their final triumph was the elevation of Sir John Vaughan to the Earldom of Canberry. This Sir John “after much supplication became the Comptroller of the Prince of Wales Household in 1614" Sir John, the first Earl of Canberry was a cousin to Rowland Vaughan.

Walter and his surviving family settled down at Pembrey near to the seat of the Earl at Golden Grove. His financial position appears to have been satisfactory and he sent his son James to the Inns of Court in London where he qualified as a barrister-at-law. James, probably through both the Vaughan and Dalton connections, acquired the post of Receiver for the Duchy of Lancaster, which was held in turn by his eldest son John. Another son Richard became Sheriff.

It is obvious that the Civil war had a rather devastating effect on Walter and his family. The number of male Dalton’s was drastically reduced and the young James chances of survival could not have been rated high in the hard winter of 1651. Yet the family adapted itself, survived and then rebuilt both its numbers and its socio-economic position - quite a remarkable feat in a troubled period of English history.

At Kidwelly: copied from the re-editing of Mrs. Leaning’s “Dalton” book:
At this place then the newcomers settled down, hoping no doubt to be remote from war, want, and other troubles. Little Charles would soon forget that he had ever had any other home. Riding into Pembrey before his father on the horse, or later on trotting beside him on a long-tailed Welsh pony, they would follow the pleasant coast road, and would see on their left the promontory of Gower, "thrusting far out into the Severn sea;" or on their right they might look westward "over the broad shining tides and sands of the Towy estuary, and away over the mouth of the Taff, and see cape beyond cape fading into the dim seas that wash the iron coasts of Pembroke."

Charles was five when his father came into Wales. When he was nine years old the tide of war had completely turned. Just as his little cousin is the north would hear of the siege of Lathom House, so he would hear wonderingly of the great Puritan, Cromwell, and his Ironsides, and the siege of Pembroke. Castle after castle, town after town had fallen to him. Laugharne folk said that Cromwell "or the devil in his likeness" had come against them; at any rate their castle was dismantled and partly burnt; Carmarthen, where the ordinance was made, Chepstow, Cardiff, Heath, Swansea, Tenby-no matter how high the rock built fortress stood, how thick the walls, all were in the hands of the Parliament. And before the boy was ten, the King had gone too, and the Protectorate had begun.

During these years, two other little brothers had been born. The family Bible gives their names as Ormonde, born 1645, and Walter, born 1648. Neither of these, or Thomas, who had been born at Curbridge, lived to grow up. But in 1650, James, the fifth son, was born.

The Vaughan's: Copied from the re-editing of Mrs. Leaning’s “Dalton” book:
This was a very important family. Marshall's Genealogists' Guide gives references to ten pages in Sir Thomas Phillip's Carmarthenshire Pedigrees; in the Marriage Register of Gray's Inn Chapel there are 47 entries under this name, and the Lives of Sir Henry Vaughn (1587-1659) and his nephew Richard Vaughan, 2nd Earl of Carbery, are in the D.H.B. This Sir Henry was a son of Walter Vaughn of Golden Grove, elected M.P. for Carmarthen in 1621-29; 1640; and knighted at Oxford on January 1, 1642-43. Richard Vaughan was given command of the Royalist forces in Carmarthen, Cardigan and Pembroke. When David Lloyd, dean of St. Asaph's and an old Oxford man, wrote his Memoirs of the "Excellent Personages" who had suffered in the Civil War, he mentions (p. 576) several others: "John Vaughan of Llanelly, who paid for composition 540p. Sir George Vaughan, Pembrey, a Colonel in the King's army, 2609p." and of Sir William Vaughan, he writes thus: "a person of excellent conduct and service in south Wales and Cheshire, both for the sallies he made out of Shrawarading Castle and the defeat he gave to Pointz, Sept. 1645, "who being reinforced next day, Sir William hardly escaped to Ragland and then to Ireland, where he formed a considerable army and encamped them under my Lord of Ormond before Dublin." He was killed "fighting desperately" in August 1649. Though I cannot trace the exact relationship of James Dalton's father-in-law to any of the Vaughan’s here mentioned, it is evident that this was the family to which his six sons and his daughter owed their maternal descent.

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