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One of my paternal great-great-great-great-great-grandmothers was Sarah Langley (1735-84). She was born at Sutton in West Sussex, the seventh and last child of William Langley (1691-1769) and Ann MANT (1696-1784?).

Sarah Langley (1735-84) married John NEAL (1731?-74) at Bignor, West Sussex in 1766. They had three sons there and probably lived at Manor Farm.

William Langley (1691-1769) and Ann MANT (1696-1784?) married at Chichester in 1719. They had seven children and had them baptised at Bignor or at Sutton, these places are only about a mile apart. Their fourth child, John (1729-83), married Ann KNIGHT at Bignor in 1772. Much of the following information was researched by one of their descendants - this did involve a lot of email and phone consultation with myself!
Only John and Sarah of William and Ann's children are known to have had any descendants but all seven were alive when William made his will in 1769. John (1729-83) and Ann [Knight] had five children at Sutton. Their first child, also John (1774-?), married Elizabeth STRINGER at Sutton in 1795. John and Elizabeth's first child, Luke, seems to have been the last Langley to have been baptised at Sutton. John and Elizabeth moved away and had eight more children at Stedham, Haslemere (Surrey) and Fernhurst. Only one of their sons, William (1815-87), is known to have married, he moved to Chichester where he was the miller at Broyle Mill in 1851. Living descendants are known for several of his children. Two of John and Elizabeth's daughters are known to have married. One produced descendants (DAMER and DABBS) in the Easebourne area and another had BRIDGER descendants at Woolbeding. Three of the current descendants of these Bridgers are researching their ancestry.

William Langley (1691-1769) was born at Sutton, the first child of William (1639-1721) and Anne SOTCHER (1656-?). William and Anne married at Stopham in 1691. Thanks to an email on the Sussex-Plus mailing list from Horace SATCHER of Alabama, USA, I discovered that this was a second marriage for both of them, William had previously been in a childless marriage with Elizabeth HEATH (?-1688). Anne did have children from her previous marriage to John CARVER so William Langley may have selected her on that basis, Anne's maiden name was SOTCHER which appears in various other spellings such as SACHER, SATCHER and SOCHER. William and Anne had four children. Anne's brother Robert SOTCHER left an excellent will when he died in 1701. As he was a bachelor he made bequests to his sister (also naming her current husband William Langley) and her Carver children, and also to his brother John of Pennsylvania, USA. John SOTCHER was a Steward to William PENN and had emigrated in 1699. John Sotcher was Horace's ancestor.
William and Anne's two daughters, Elizabeth and Anne, are believed to have married but neither marriage has been confirmed and it is not known whether they had any children. The fate of William and Anne's other son, Robert, is not known.

William Langley (1639-1721) was the second child (first son) of William (1603?-1688) and Alice (?-1688). William and Alice had seven children at Sutton. William (1603?-1688) left a very informative will, naming all seven children, two sons-in-law and the thirteen grandchildren who had been born by then. The thirteen grandchildren did not include my ancestor as he wasn't born until 1691. Although we have discovered where all the 13 were baptised plus a few later ones they all seem to vanish from Sussex records and we have no known connections for any of them in the present day.

The origins of the earliest William Langley mentioned here have not been discovered. He may have been baptised at Petworth in 1603 but his parents are not known, there are at least two different possibilities in the area. Parish registers are not a very available or reliable source for such times so different techniques will have to be used.

Many thanks to my fellow descendant for doing much of the research into the early Langleys. He does have the advantage of living closer to Chichester than I do! A lot of the type of research needed was new to him and reading those old wills takes a lot of dedication.

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