The ROWBERRY One-Name Study

Although this is called the ROWBERRY One-Name Study it also includes many variants, such as my own maiden name RUBERY. In fact these are the two most common variants found today, closely followed by ROWBURY and RUBERRY. Others still extant include REWBURY, ROBERY, ROEBURY, ROVERY, ROWBERY, ROWBORY, ROWBREE, ROWBREY, ROWBURREY, RUBBERY, RUBBRA, RUBRA, RUBREY and RUBURY.

In the past many other variants have been noted, but as far as I am aware they are not still in use. In most cases it is impossible to say that present day variants are only linked to others using the same spelling as, due to inconsistencies in recording, changes were still occurring up to the beginning of the twentieth century. So if you are possessed of, or have an interest in, any of the above surnames I hope that you will find something of interest within these pages.

For a musical backgound while you read please click here. This is an arrangement of Elgar's Enigma Variations - a particularly appropriate piece. It is included by permission of Robert S Fidley 1998. Click here for further details.


My name is Polly RUBERY, although the name on my birth certificate reads Patricia Mary RUBERY. For twenty-five years I was known as Polly LAWRENCE, but in 2000 I reverted to my maiden name. I came by the name LAWRENCE in the normal way, when I married Francis Colin LAWRENCE in 1975; but Polly is a nickname that has become established through long usage! When our first son, John Francis Frederick LAWRENCE was born in 1976 my cousin Sheila in Toronto sent me a "Baby Album". One of the pages was a beautifully drawn Family Tree with spaces for the baby's ancestors back to his great-grandparents. As both Francis and I were born to parents who were aged over 40, neither of us had known all our grandparents. Therefore I started asking questions to fill in the gaps - and somehow I've never stopped since!

The ROWBERRY One-Name Study was registered with the Guild of One-Name Studies in 1980, only one year after the founding of the Guild in 1979. My membership number is 278. The Guild has its own Website, visit it to see if any of your other surname interests are the subject of an ONS. You will also find a definition of what a One-Name Study is. But don't forget to come back!

Since 1996 I have been helped by Nicky ROWBERRY and since 1997 by Linda AMES, who is a descendant of Bishop John ROWBERRY who emigrated to America from Herefordshire in the early 1840's. I would like to acknowledge the great debt that I owe, not only to the efforts of Nicky and Linda, but also to many others who have helped in the course of my research.

However all mistakes are mine! If you wish to contact me please send an email by clicking on the following link, or the one which you should find on most pages of this site: Polly Rubery

RONS Mini Family Gathering 2020

The last ROWBERRY Family Gathering was held
on Saturday 15th February 2020
at Bishops Frome
as part of my 70th Birthday Celebration called
Collision of Worlds

Click here for details

RONS - Mini Family Gathering - 2020

Or use the email link below to contact me for further details:

RONS Mini Family Gathering 2020

FamilyTreeDNA Logo

There is a ROWBERRY Group Y DNA Project
For details of the project and how to join visit the ROWBERRY DNA Project page on the FamilyTreeDNA website. The project has already yielded some very interesting results, joining up some trees and confirming links on others. But there is still a lot to learn about how all the various ROWBERRY, RUBERY and other R Family Trees link together, not to mention the GOMERY ones too!
But it cannot be done without your help! Please consider joining or donating to the project which can also be done via the FTDNA website.
If you have any questions please email me using the following link:
RONS DNA Project
You can also view a presentation on the ROWBERRY yDNA Project here.

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Rootsweb Mailing List Administrator

There is a free email list for the ROWBERRY ONS which you are warmly invited to join.
The List carries announcements of updates and additions to this website, so you can keep abreast of the news by subscribing.
To subscribe just send the one word subscribe to the following address:

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Or if Facebook is more your thing then I have created The ROWBERRY One-Name Study Group that you can join.
It is a closed group so all members either have to be added by me,
or you can request to join and I will confirm your membership.
The ROWBERRY One-Name Study Group

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Births, marriages and deaths in England and Wales
I have added the extractions that I made from the General Register Office (GRO) indexes to births, marriages and deaths for most variants of ROWBERRY and GOMERY to the FreeBMD database. This covers the civil registration of events that took place in England and Wales during the period 1837-1983. For the R marriages where I know the name of the spouse you will find that too, identified by my name as the submitter. Note that the index is now reasonably complete for most other surnames, up to the 1940s, with some beyond.
Search for those missing events here!

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Now read on
Enter and explore the world of the ROWBERRY family by choosing one of the following links. To continue, each page gives you the choice of returning here, or moving on to the next item in a particular theme.

But please read this
NOTE first!
This addresses privacy concerns and possible downloading problems associated with the trees on this web-site.

Family Trees
At present only a small part of the many Family Trees that have been built up from the researches of the ONS are on the web-site, so if you cannot find yourself now, please check regularly to see if your branch has been added. Alternatively, please contact Polly Rubery for further details.

RUBERY of Rubery, Owen & Co This tree shows the RUBERYs who are related to the brothers who founded the firm which became Rubery, Owen & Co. It was the tree which inspired me to begin my One-Name study, because, following family legend, I had spent a long time researching this family, believing it to be the origin of my great-great-great-grandfather George RUBERY. However when I discovered that he had been born in Herefordshire I was reluctant to discard all my research. As I write this no definite link has been proved between my tree and this one, although again it hasn't been entirely ruled out either. It is my hope that the ROWBERRY Y DNA Project may shed more light on this, and prove it one way or another.

ROWBERRY Tree Three This was the first of the completed trees to be placed on the website. Besides the ROWBURY Family of the USA it also contains the ROWBURREY Family of Aberdare and several present day ROWBERRY Families, including the one in Scotland.

The RUBERRY Family of Cornwall This is the complete tree for the RUBERRY Family of Cornwall, which includes the RUBERRY Family of Idaho, and also a RUBERRY family in both Canada and Australia.

The RUBERRY Family of Chicago The RUBERRY Family of Chicago, USA, which has Irish origins.

Name Variants
As many of the different variants of the surname appear on different trees I am also working on a set of pages linking each different variant with the trees that it appears on today. (Most variants can be found on most trees in the past!). Again it is hoped to build up this suite of pages as quickly as possible, so if you cannot find your own particular variant now, please check regularly to see if your branch has been added. Alternatively, please contact
Polly Rubery for further details.

The surname RUBERRY The first of these pages concerns the variant RUBERRY. As I found out quite a lot about this name whilst I was in America this makes use of some of the information and pictures that I was able to obtain. You will also find quite a bit about the Ellis Island connection too.

In any voyage of exploration it is necessary to have a good map to guide you. Malcolm Farmer placed a wonderful map of Herefordshire dated 1880 on his web site and granted me permission to link to it. Sadly this part of his website has disappeared so while I have left the non-working links for sometime, hoping that the problem would be resolved, I have now been forced to remove them. I hope in the future to add links to another online map, so that you will once again be able to relate the history of the families to the places where they lived.

Researching the ROWBERRY Family This tells the story of my research into my own family with my own family tree. Here you will find out why I should really be doing a GOMERY One-Name Study as well, and why my closest living relative in Herefordshire today is called GUMMERY! And that the Y DNA Project has shown that I am also related to the ROWBERRYs of Lugwardine - the tree which includes the "Butchers of Hereford"...

Origins of the name The origin of the name in Herefordshire and Worcestershire. Confirmation of my theory is now included.

Distribution Distribution of the name in the 1881 census index.

The USA ROWBERRY Family A brief history of the USA ROWBERRY Family, together with their family tree.

Footsteps A brief tour of Herefordshire and Worcestershire in the Footsteps of Wilford Woodruff.

The USA RUBERY Family Some of the RUBERYs of the USA.

RONS-Family Gathering A ROWBERRY Family Gathering was held on 7th-9th April 2000. This page gives a report of the weekend, which around 200 people attended.

News Reports about the ROWBERRY Family Gathering The Family Gathering in April 2000 was reported in several local newspapers, the Daily Telegraph and on ABCNews (American TV). Click here to read all about it!

For those of you awaiting details of the Family Gatherings held in Salt Lake City in May 2001 and in England in 2002, 2005, 2008 and 2012, I can only apologise! I hope to have them online one day! In the meanwhile details of the programmes are still available at:

RONS - Family Gathering - 2001

RONS - Family Gathering - 2002

RONS - Family Gathering - 2005

RONS - Family Gathering - 2008


RONS - Family Gathering - 2012

The Wedding Present An interesting 19th century Loving Cup, with an inscription reading "A Present from George Harris of Hanley to Albert ROWBERY of Hereford".

Links Some links which I have found useful or interesting.

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Last revised: 22nd December 2021
Polly Rubery 1998-2021