Here is the beginnings of a summary of the information I have on my Fancy family ancestors from Dorset.

Our family interest is in the descendants of Henry FANCY and Jane COFFIN.

This couple married in Canford Magna, Dorset on 25th November 1736, both were described at their marriage as being from Higher Lytchett - later known as Lytchett Minster. They had eleven children born between 1737 and 1758. All of these children (except Sarah, who was baptised at Lytchett Matravers), were christened at Lytchett Minster.

Henry and Jane's son Henry was christened on 13th December 1741. He married Jane ABBOTT by banns at Lytchett Minster on the 28th February 1764.

Jane was the daughter of George Abbott and was christened at Lytchett Minster on 9th February 1736.

Their son James was christened on 25th November 1764 at Lytchett Minster, he married Sarah CHRISTOPHER at Lytchett Minster on 20th September 1783. They had eleven children born between 1785 and 1806. All were baptised at Lytchett Minster.

James was a farmer at Lytchett and Holton. He died on16th November 1850 of ‘Natural decay’, and was buried at Lytchett Minster on 23rd November 1850 aged 85.  Sarah died at Organford on 21st March 1840, aged 78, of Apoplexy and was buried at Lytchett Minster on 29th March.

Their son Thomas was christened on 14th May 1797. He married Elizabeth WILCOX at St.Martins Wareham on 31st January 1825.

Thomas and Elizabeth lived initially at Organford, then moved to Langton Matravers where Thomas was a gamekeeper. They had seven children.

Thomas died aged 63 on 10th January 1860 of ‘Natural Decay’ and was buried on 14th January 1860 at Lytchett Minster. Elizabeth died on 29th July 1874 of ‘Old Age’, and was buried at Lytchett Minster on 1st August 1874 aged 78.

Their son Emmanuel was christened at Langton Matravers on the Isle of Purbeck on 3rd February 1833. Emmanuel was a gamekeeper when he married Thirza REEKS at Morden on 30th October 1856. Emmanuel was later described as a Woodman and worked for the family of Miles Rodgett at Sandford House near Wareham, and, after his death in 1882, his widow Mary.

Emmanuel and Thirza lived in Sandford cottages, on the Sandford estate, and had ten children. Thirza died at the age of 58 of Cerebral Apoplexy on 10th February 1896 and was buried at Wareham on 12th February. Emmanuel died of “Mitral disease. Ascites. Exhaustion.” aged 75 on 20th August 1909 and was buried at Wareham on the 27th. Both deaths were reported by their daughter Elizabeth, who was present on both occasions.

Their son John FANCY was born on 10th February 1874. He married Mary Elizabeth BARKER on 10th August 1901 in Wawne, East Yorkshire . They were known as Fred and Polly.

For much of his life Fred worked as a coachman. This picture shows him either when he was working for the Wrangham family of Neswick Hall in East Yorkshire or earlier when he was working for the Harrison-Broadley family at Tickton Grange, near Beverley. Before this he is reported to have worked for the Lascelles family in Yorkshire.

We do not know why Fred moved from his native Dorset to Yorkshire, but it may well have been because his brother became the coachman to the Rodgett family, leaving him with no career aspirations at home. The rest of Fred's family all remained in Dorset . In the 1930s or 40s Fred and Polly moved back to live in Organford for a time before settling finally in Scarborough , where both of them died. By this point Fred was making a living as a Gardener. Both Fred and Polly are buried in the graveyard of St. Lawrence's Church in Scalby, just to the north of Scarborough .

Fred and Polly had four children, Thirza, Nellie, Kate and John.

 (From left to right: Kate, Polly, Thirza and John, Fred, Nellie)

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Created and maintained by Chris Porter. (
Last updated: 17 February 2005