Sussex and Durham
I'm happy to say that on my 1997 trip to England that I was able to uncover new information on the family in the south and north -- on the Connecticut and Pennsylvania families, respectively. It appears more certain than ever that the bulk of today's U.S. and Canadian families -- those descended from John Sr. of Guilford, Conn. -- can call the East Sussex village of Lewes their ancestral "home." And the Parmley family who immigrated to the Keystone State in the 1830s and '40s still has distant cousins living on the moors in County Durham, including one couple who operate a B&B on an old family farm just north of Middleton-in-Teesdale.

Lewes, Sussex

Even during Roman times, the village of Lewes (pronounced LEW-is) was important for its strategic location on the River Ouse. The remains of a Roman fort can still be seen in the churchyard of St. John-sub-Castro ("St. John Under the Castle"). The castle that looms over the town, at left, did so in our ancestors' day too -- for its construction began shortly after the Norman conquest in 1066 and continued for the next three centuries.

Parish records show that members of the Parmelee family were here as early as 1572 and were last noted in November, 1638. A local history notes the continued suppression of Lewes' Puritans -- the more they were suppressed the stronger they became -- from 1620-40.

Middleton-in-Teesdale, Durham

Sheep wander along the roads that roll across the windswept moors of County Durham. The earliest records of the family in this area date back to the mid-17th Century. Many Parmley men who worked the area's lead mines found work in Pennsylvania's coal mines.

Today you can still find Parmley families living in the valley of the River Tees and in other villages and on farms just south of the border with Scotland

Lewes pages on this site
County Durham pages on this site
  • Genealogy: County Durham generations, Pennsylvania's first immigrants.
  • Overview: An overview of Middleton and some history.
Other Lewes sites on the Web
Other County Durham pages on the Web

Search the site -- but remember,
"Parmelee" can be spelled dozens of ways.
If you aren't sure, use * as a wildcard:

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Updated March 1, 2020