South Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas
We have not been able to
identify the original immigrant for the family. There are several
possibilities. Most of these individuals seem to have shipped from
England and there are Machens found in a number of locations in England
including Gloucester, York and London. If they came from Scotland it
may have been even more distant and difficult lineage to trace. Laura
Cleveland Edwards has done a great deal of research on the various
lines of the family and lays out the problem very completely in her
recent book, "Three Centuries in America: Thomas Machen of Middlesex
County, Virginia." She states, "It is a name found in Wales and various
parts of England, particularly in Yorkshire. There were also Machens in
Gloucestershire in 15th century. The name Machen is not to be confused
with the French name Machin, although Machin is frequently a
misspelling of the name in many records. In fact, the name Machen may
be one of the most misspelled names in the U.S. with a British origin.
Other misspellings include Macken, Matchen, Micham, Macham, Mechem,
Mechem, Meachum(which is a surname in its own right), Mackham, and even
Other spellings of the
name I found in the US census records can be found as Macen, McInne,
Machin, Machan, Macken, Makin or Mackin although the family has spelled
it as Machen from the early 1700's. One early example of another
distant relation spells his name by another variation. A book published
as The Diary of Henry Machyn, Citizen and Merchant-Taylor of
London, from A. D. 1550 to A. D. 1563. edited by John Gough Nichols
is interesting not only for its name but also for the status of the
individual. This Henry Machyn was a royal tailor and merchant in London
and obviously had some connection to the royal families. I have
included a few passage here to give an idea of the dialogue and
spelling used in this time period.
The XVIJ day of July
was a scresmys a Margyson be-twyn the Englysmen and Frenchemen, and
ther owre men had the beter and had good bote of cattel; and ther wher
slayne ix men of armes and xviij taken presoners of Frenche-men, and of
owrs iij takken presoners and v hurtt, by the helpe of men of Gynes and
My own preference, although
unproved, is that our relative is one of the seven sons of Thomas
Machen of Gloucestershire, England. This Thomas was quite
well-to-do, having inherited an estate. He had been sheriff of
the region, was elected mayor of Gloucester three times and to
Parliament twice. He had seven sons and six daughter. Only the
two youngest of his sons were included in his will. I propose that the
other sons emigrated to the colonies to land that their father had
invested in. We are missing the name of the connecting generation
father but the naming pattern is similar to the other known families.
The xxvy day of
July wa bered masteres Draper of Camurell, with ij whytt branchys and
xii stayff torchys, and iij grett tapurs, and ij dosen of skochyons of
The xxix day of
July was fechyd out of Westmynster by the constabyll of the Towre of
London, the wyche ya constabull, and browth on (blank) Waxham, the
wyche he brake out of the Towre, and wa browth thrugh London.
The tomb of Thomas Machen,
Gloucester Cathedral, Gloucestershire, Great Britain.
sculpture included portraits of their seven sons and six
created by Samuel Bladwin, photo courtesty of Julian P. Guffog 2011
Thomas Machen (b.
1541 d. 18 Oct 1614)
son of Henry Machen of Gloucester and Elizabeth Baugh
m. Christian Barston (b.1546
dau. of Walter Barston of Nether Swell, Glos.
although they had 13 children, none seem buried in the Cathedral
The History of Parliament web
Family and Education
1st s. of Henry Machen of Gloucester and Elizabeth, da. of one Baugh. m.
c.1564 (with £100), Christian (d. 29 June 1615), da. of Walter
Barston of Nether Swell, Glos., 7s. (5 d.v.p.) 6da. (3 d.v.p.).
suc. fa. 1567.
d. 18 Oct. 1614.
sig. Tho[mas] Machen
councilman, Gloucester 1567, sheriff 1572-3, 1576-7,
alderman 1574-d., mayor 1579-80, 1588-9, 1601-2, dep. lt.
1587-at least 1612, master,
St. Mary Magdalene hosp. 1603-d. dep. mayor 1604, commr. subsidy 1604.
Machen, the son
of an alderman, inherited property at Gloucester and Tewkesbury. A
mercer, he also engaged in the wheat and malt trade, and was able to
purchase the manor of Condicote, near his wife’s home. In 1604 he was
one of the candidates approved by the corporation but was defeated by
John Jones. In one of the Star Chamber actions which followed he was
accused of improperly persuading his fellow-commissioners to reduce his
subsidy rating some six weeks after the election from £20 in goods to
£10 in lands. It was alleged he was ‘as rich an alderman as any in
Gloucester’, with a yearly income of £400 and between £5,000 and
£10,000 ‘in money and other his personal goods and chattels’. He was
obliged to admit that one of his three colleagues was his son-in-law
and another his uncle, but refused to give details of his estate,
protesting only that he had ‘departed with a great part of his
substance’ in marrying four daughters.
In 1614 Machen
himself seems to have defeated a corporation candidate. He left no mark
on the records of the Addled Parliament, and did not long survive it.
He was already ill when he made his will on 9 September 1614. He had
settled his farm of Crickley in Badgeworth on his wife, with remainder
to his eldest son and his grandson, but he was able to provide other
lands and £2,500 for his two surviving younger sons. He left £100 to
the corporation, to be put out at interest every five years to ‘four
poor honest tradesmen that are mercers’, largely for the benefit of 13
poor men and women ‘now newly by me placed and hereafter to be placed
in their stead as poor almspeople in the hospital or house of St. Mary
Magdalene near the city of Gloucester’. He was buried in the cathedral,
and his widow bequeathed £100 for a monument. No later member of the
family sat in Parliament.
Ref Volumes: 1604-1629
Author: Alan Davidson
[Trush, Andrew ed. and
John P. Ferris. The History of
Parliament: the House of Commons 1604-1629. 2010]
The Machen family is connected with Gloucester by the
10c. "About the year 967, in the time of Morgan hen, it appears
taht after a long contest Owen ap Howel Dda obtained possession of
Caerleon, Eddlogan, and Machen, with the consent of the Saxon King
Edgar, leaving the remainder of the district, which is now called the
Lordship of Wentllywch, in the possession of Margan." [page24]
The Machen family seems to have been very established in Gloucester
from the 10c to the 17c. The 1700's brought change and challenges to
the family. This era had been difficult for people involved in
governmental change. The supporters of royalty found themselves
defending the abuses of power heaped on the population.
Gloucester, being one of the five larger trade centers in England was
urged to support the king.
At the election of M.P. s in 1597 it
was alleged that the bench had deliberately excluded from the poll
numerous freemen who were supporters of Atkyns. The corporation
was divided between an establishment group, led by Alderman Thomas
Machen and his son-in-law Thomas Rich, which was sympathetic towards
puritan ideas, and a more populist faction, led by Alderman Garnons and
Alderman John Jones, which endeavoured to mobilize the freeman vote and
had stronger ties with the cathedral close (Jones was diocesan
registrar under eight bishops). When Rich became mayor in 1603 it
was said he spent 'the greatest part of his time and study that year to
be revenged upon his enemies and such as were not of his faction, to
weaken, charge, and defame them'. It was further alleged that he
tried to rig the council meetings. The elections to parliament in
December 1603 were particularly turbulent. Rich and his allies on the
corporation tried to delay the execution of the election writ in order
to prevent the return of Jones. In the meantime Jones canvassed freeman
support, promising to get more fairs for the city and the redress of
various popular grievances. When Jones was eventually chosen Rich tried
to hold another poll, though without success. Disputes continued
through 1604, and in 1605 a series of cases involving leading members
of the corporation was heard in Star Chamber and the Exchequer.
Further outbreaks of factionalism occurred in 1608 and the 1610s,
but they were on a lesser scale. During the second half of James I's
reign there are signs that the magistracy, by then dominated by
committed puritans, sought to curb internal conflict and consolidate
oligarchic power by restraining abuses in city government.
[Herbert, N.M. A History of the County of
Gloucester: Vol. 4: the City of Gloucester.]
1599, April 25 - Oliver Cromwell is born in Huntington.
1642 - 1646 The English Civil War - Oliver Cromwell and Charles I
1643 August 10th - Gloucester town's support for Oliver Cromwell
identified the town as dangerous to the Royalist. The town, with a
population of about 5,000, was put under siege by Royalist
troops. Even they had run out of food and though were near
expiring, they had got word out, and 15,000 troops were sent on the way
for their relief. The Royalist troops
stayed trying to force the surrender of the city until the
Parliamentary troops arrived for the rescue. The reprieve for the town
was brief. Cromwell dies of malaria and the royalty is restored to
power. The Machens were banished to parts unknown. Some suggest
to the island of Madeira, and other say to the colonies.
Here are a few of his know children. All the listed children here
seems to have establish lives in England. There have to be
|Known Children of Thomas Machen and
|Henricus Machen de Creckley do com cicitatn Glouc
| d.prior to 1614
| m.Anna Walker de com Bucks
|Ricardus Machende Benckington in com Oxon Grantee of Machen
|| 1m. Margareta Davenport de Daven port in Com Cestris 1600
2m Maria "Mary" Tucker de Gravesend 1634 (d. 1677)
|Edward Machende Matherley and Donington
| m. Francesca Gaynsford de com Kent )(d. 1671)
|| 1m. Richard Parker 1585
2m. George Wyrall esq. to King James I
|| m. Robins
[Machen, H. A. The Machen Family, Gloucestershire.
1943, Vol. 64, 96-112, from the Transactions of the Bristol and
Gloucestershire Archeological Society. ]
1688- the Monarchy is restored. In a complicated series of events
between the new parliament, James II, and Charles II and William of
Orange (France) the Civil War is ended and the Monarchy is
restored. Cromwell's supporters were convicted of regicide which
could be varied from execution to banishment.
of the Machen Names and heraldry from England
"Machen - East back court and Whitemead Park,
co. Gloucester: descended from Thomas
Machin, three times Mayor of Gloucester, buried in that city in
1614, granted to Richard Machen co. Gloucester, 1615, the present
representative is Rev. Edward Machen, of Eastback Court and Whitement
Park). Gu. a fesse vair betw. three pelicans' heads erased or vulning
themselves ppr. granted to Richard Machen, of Gloucestershire, in
Machen, Machin, or Machon. Same arms crest- a
lion's head erased. sa. on the head a cap of maintenance.
"pelican" - is always represented w/ her wings endorsed, neck embowed
and pecking her breast, from which issue drops of blood.
"erased"- forcibly from the body; a head, limb, or other object erased,
has its severed parts jagged."
The symbol of the pelican
pecking at her breast seems to be used as a symbol of self-sacrifice.
One version has the pelican bleeding drops of blood into the open
mouths of her nestlings.
[Burke, Sir Bernard.
The General Armory of England, Scot, Ireland and Wales. Harrison,
59 Pall Mall, London. 1878]
of the Machen Names from Scotland
"There was a tenement of this name in the Vale of Clyde. Adam Machan
charters by Orabile, who died c.1203. Thomas, son of John of Machan,
was juror on a an inquest made by Sir Aleander Uviet, sheriff of
source: Black, George T. The
Surnames of Scotland, their Origin, Meaning, and Hist. The N. Y.
Pub. Lib., 1962 N.Y.
According to the clan guide
on the www this family is connected to the MacDonald clan of Scotland.
The Vale of Clyde is the valley of the Clyde River which runs near
Glasgow. The river also creates a bay known as the Firth of Clyde.
Black, George T. The
Surnames of Scotland, their Origin, Meaning, and Hist. The N. Y.
Pub. Lib., 1962 N.Y.
Edwards, Laura Cleveland. Three Centuries in America: Thomas Machen
of Middlesex County, VA, 816 Perry
Herbert, N.M. A History of the County of Gloucester: Vol. 4: the
City of Gloucester1988
Fuquay-Varina, N. C. 27526, 1999. email - firstname.lastname@example.org
Machen, H. A. The Machen Family, Gloucestershire. 1943, Vol.
64, 96-112, from the Transactions of the Bristol and
Gloucestershire Archeological Society.
Nichols, John Gough edited by. The Diary of Henry Machyn, Citizen
and Merchant-Taylor of London, from A. D. 1550 to A. D. 1563.
printed for the Camden Society, J. B. Nichols and son, 35, Parliament
Trush, Andrew and John P. Ferris. The History of
Parliament: the House of Commons 1604-1629. Cambridge University
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