Faber family pedigree

While searching for information about Henry Grey Faber  I found images online showing the sword of Captain H G Faber, described as ‘The sword of Captain H G Faber of the 5th Battalion, who departed for France in 1915. He was present at the Second Battle of Ypres in 1915, The Somme 1916, Arras and Passchendaele in 1917. Became a Major in 1918. Blade of 32 1/4 inches engraved with Family Crest and H.G.F., Royal Arms, Crowned ER VII, foliage and retailer – Samuel Brothers, and back edge with – London Made and numbered 1115. Plated hilt with Crowned ER VII and wire bound fishskin grip complete. Sword bag marked with H.G. Faber, Norton-On-Tees, 10th Oct 1906.’

The seller of the sword explained the reference to 1897 is the pattern of the sword, which is when this style of sword and hilt started to be used and is still used today. The images of the sword on this website, are used with the permission of Jemswords. I have also located an image on the My Family Silver website, which shows the same crest that appears on the sword . Written under the image it says ‘Hamilton S., Esquire, M.R.C.S., L.R.C.S., of St. George’s Hospital, Hyde Park Corner, London, S.W.’

These finds led to me contacting the College of Arms to learn more and Christopher Vane, Chester Herald at the College of Arms, explained as follows.

‘Arms belong to lines of descent and not surnames. Two branches of the same family may have quite different arms while others branches may not be entitled to arms at all.
At all times significant numbers of people have just assumed “arms” irregularly and without lawful authority. This may be a matter of regret to the heralds but it is a fact of life. The heralds have always had difficulty controlling the irregular use of arms. Such irregular use of arms is often of historical interest. In practice where “arms” are just assumed it is not uncommon for a family to assume “arms” which are similar or even identical to the arms of another family with the same or a similar surname.

We have at the College of Arms an extensive pedigree for the Faber family which was recorded in 1902 by Hamilton S. Faber, the man whom you mentioned in your email of 28th February. He was the first cousin of Henry Grey Faber’s father.

There were two branches of the Faber family with different coats of arms and crests. The arms to which Henry Grey Faber was entitled were granted in 1928. They were granted on the application of Hamilton S. Faber’s widowed mother to the descendants of her late husband’s father, Thomas Henry Faber. Henry Grey Faber was the grandson of Thomas Henry Faber and thus he became entitled to the arms by descent.

The arms were thus granted sometime after the sword was manufactured. The crest could have been engraved on the sword at a later date. Alternatively it may be that the relevant branch of the Faber family had been using the arms informally prior to the grant in 1928: see paragraph 2 above.

The arms and crest so granted in 1928 can be blazoned as follows: coat of arms Or a Rose Gules barbed and seeded proper on a Chief Azure two Mullets Argent and crest Issuant out of a Coronet composed of three Roses Or a dexter Cubit Arm in armour the hand proper grasping a Rose Gules barbed seeded and slipped and encircling the wrist a Wreath of Oak also proper fructed Gold.

There was another branch of the family, which had rather different arms. This branch of the family included two peers, the first and last Lord Faber and the first and last Lord Wittenham. The pedigree recorded at the College of Arms is headed by William Faber of Leeds (d.1775). He had a son, Rev. Thomas Faber (1729-1821), Vicar of Calverley, Yorkshire, who is shown as having four sons. Henry Grey Faber was descended from the third son, Thomas Henry Faber of Bishop Auckland. This Thomas Henry Faber was the father of the Thomas Henry Faber to whom I referred earlier. Lords Faber and Wittenham were descended from Rev. Thomas Faber’s second son, Charles David Faber.

Pedigrees for the family can be found in the 1952 and 1972 editions of Burke’s Landed Gentry, but I think that these entries will still be in copyright. Your great aunt appears in the entry in the 1972 edition.

Frederick William Faber (1814-1863), the hymn writer, was the fourth son of the elder Thomas Henry Faber.’

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Hamilton S Faber

I learned about Hamilton S Faber when researching the Faber family arms.  I was advised by the College of Arms that they hold an extensive pedigree for the Faber family which was recorded in 1902 by Hamilton S. Faber and that he was the first cousin of Henry Grey Faber’s father.

They also advised that there were two branches of the Faber family with different coats of arms and crests. The arms to which Henry Grey Faber was entitled were granted in 1928 on the application of Hamilton S. Faber’s widowed mother, to the descendants of her late husband’s father, Thomas Henry Faber. As Henry Grey Faber was the grandson of Thomas Henry Faber, he became entitled to the arms by descent.

The information I have learned about Hamilton S and his family can be found below.

1881: Hamilton Stanley Faber, aged 2, is recorded at living at 1, Esplanade, Teignmouth East, Newton Abbot, Devon, England, with his parents Edward G Faber (a wine merchant), Edith  M Faber, Edward G Faber, Ernest M Faber and Evelyn A Faber.  Also, a governess and two nurses.

1901: Hamilton S Faber, aged 22, is a medical student, living at 95, Fordwych Road, Hampstead, London & Middlesex, England, living with parents Edward G Faber (retired from owning ironworks), Edith M Faber and Ernest W Faber aged 24 (member of the London Stock Exchange).

1911: Hamilton Stanley Faber, aged 32, is working as Doctor Mp Mrcs Lrcp and living at 28 Chichele Road Cricklewood NW, Willesden, Middlesex, England with his mother Edith Maria  Faber (now a widow), Edward Jocy Faber and Ernest Waddington Faber. Also two servants.

1939: Hamilton S Faber is working as a medical practioner and living at 25 Chichele Road , Willesden M.B., Middlesex, England with Jean (Caslow) Faber and three others.

Edward G Faber

Hamilton’s father Edward G Faber was born in 1836 and can be found on 1841 census.

1841: Edward, aged 5 (born in Durham 1836), is recorded as living at High Street, Stockton, Durham, England with parents Thomas Henry Faber aged 35 (born 1806) and Eleanor Faber aged 36 (born 1805 in Durham). Also siblings Ann, Eleanor, Frank, Edward, Elizabeth and Mary.

Thomas Henry Faber and Eleanor Faber (nee Grey)

I believe that Thomas Henry Faber married Eleanor Grey in 1827 in Stockton, although there are two similar entries.  The first one shows a Eleanor Grey married Thomas Henry Faber on 26 April 1827 in Stockton, Durham and the second ones shows Eleanor Grey married Thomas Henry Weber of Stockton-on-Tees, Durham on 26 April 1827.

I have also located a baptism entry for a Eleanor Grey in Bishop-Wearmouth, Durham on 14 December 1806, to parents James Grey and Ann Hudson Grey and a second baptism entry for the same date and place but showing the mother as Ann Hudson.

1851: Eleanor, aged 46, is living at High Street, Stockton, Durham, England with daughters Elizabeth, Mary, Emma and Caroline and is described as a Widow – her occupation is given as Annuitant

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The Faber family

My great aunt Dorothy (my grandmother’s sister) married Henry Grey Faber in 1960. Dorothy was his second wife.  Although Henry and his family are not a direct ancestors, I was interested to learn more about the family, as I have a very clear memory of being told by my great aunt that the family appeared in Burke’s Peerage and I wanted to learn more about this.

Henry Grey Faber

Henry Grey Faber was the husband of my great aunt Dorothy (my grandmother’s sister). Dorothy was Henry’s second wife and the couple were married at  Holy Trinity Church, Micklegate, York in 1960. Although Henry is not a direct ancestor, I was interested to learn about him, as I have a very clear memory of being told by my great aunt that his family appeared in Burke’s Peerage and I wanted to learn more about this.

My dad tells me Henry was known as Hal and that he worked as a solicitor. I have confirmed this to be correct by looking at census returns and have also found mentions of Henry’s legal career in the Gazette newspaper.

The 1891 census shows a Henry  G Faber was born in Durham in 1887, to Thomas Faber, aged 30 (born 1861 in Durham) and Ada Faber  aged 29 (born 1862 in Wimbledon, Surrey). A younger brother and sister, Frank S and Ada L are recorded too.  Aged 14 in 1901, Henry appears to have been a boarder at a school in Harrogate and in 1911, aged 24, he is recorded as being a solicitor, living again with his parents Thomas and Ada and with more sisters and a brother.

I have also located information about Henry on the 1939 register, working as a solicitor and living with Ellen G Faber and Elizabeth H F Faber. I believe Henry married Ellen Holberton in Totnes, Devon in 1916. Their daughter Elizabeth was born in Knaresborough in 1917 and in 1939 her  occupation is shown as VAD, which I have learned stands for Voluntary Aid Detachment, a voluntary unit of civilians providing nursing care for military personnel in the United Kingdom and various other countries in the British Empire.

It would be another 20 years before Henry would marry Dorothy, who was working as a school teacher at the time, living in the Morrison household at Faceby Manor Faceby, Stokesley R.D., Yorkshire (North Riding), England.

Searching for Henry Grey Faber on the Find My past website, I found details of his service, medals and awards and his first world war record.  Ellen it seems also served in the army as a staff nurse.

Henry’s father Thomas, born 1861, can be found on the 1871 census residing at Middleton One Row, Middleton St George, Darlington, Durham, England, with his parents Henry Grey Faber, aged 41 (born 1830 in Durham) and Elizabeth Faber, aged 38 (born 1833 in Durham). Also four brothers and two sisters.  The Faber family are all recorded as visitors to Sarah Moore aged 75 and her daughter Mary A Moore aged 37.

I believe that Henry’s grandfather, also called  Henry Grey Faber, was the first son of Thomas Henry and Eleanor Faber and that he was baptised on 1 December 1829 in Durham.  Henry can be found on the 1841 census, aged 11, at Shincliffe, St Oswald, Durham and Lanchester, Durham, England which appears to be a school. In 1851 aged 21 Henry can be found lodging in the household of George and Hannah Harrision at Church Street, Guisborough, Yorkshire & Yorkshire (North Riding), England and employed as a Solicitor’s Articled Clerk.  In 1871 he can be found aged 41 residing with the Moore family as described above.

Origin of the names Faber and Grey

Information about the origin of the Faber and Grey surnames can be found on the Ancestry.co.uk website.

I am interested to learn more about the surnames Faber and Grey, as the name Grey appears to have been used as a middle name by many people with the surname Faber, both male and female, including Henry and Edward, largely in Stockton on Tees. However, I have also found the name connected to  Dorset, London, Middlesex and Essex and would very much like to know more about this. See footnote about the family of Hamilton S Faber and in particular his grandparents Thomas Henry Faber and Eleanor Faber (nee Grey).

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Governess to the King of Iraq

Dorothy Clarke, later Faber, was the eldest child of my great grandparents Albert and Louisa and she encouraged my interest in family history, sending me photos and other bits and pieces. Although born in Northamptonshire, I only remember her living in a big house in York that she shared with her sister Molly and two sausage dogs. The house overlooked the white horse cut into the hillside on the North York Moors.

One of the most interesting things Dorothy sent to me was the letter below from a Miss Lennox-Carr of Piccadilly (according to the biography of the historical novelist Georgette Heyer, Miss Lennox-Carr ran a registry office for governesses), recommending Dorothy for the post of governess to the young King of Iraq. I don’t believe that Dorothy took up the offer but nevertheless it is a lovely piece of family history.

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