Traveling the back roads of rural Wisconsin
A rural Irish country cottage

Show me first the graveyards of a country and I will tell you the true character of the people ~ Benjamin Franklin

This is Bonneyville Mill which is located near Bristol, IN

de Rodes, aka, the first Rhodes’ of England


The de Rodes Coat of Arms

The “de Rodes” family is first recorded in England when they came over with the Earl of Flanders and Tofti, Harolds brother, to assist William the Conqueror in his campaign of 1066. Already hereditary knights of Flanders, they were assured great rewards in England for their part in William the bastards claim on the kingdom. Willemus and Hugh were granted, doubtless as a reward for their services, the Moiety of Rodes, This estate was founded where the little village of Rode is now situated, in the County of Chester. Willemus had a son, Michael, who was known as Michael de Rodes, and his descendants may be traced through the Domesday book, tax rolls, civil and court records, to the present time. Hugh returned to France and established the family of the Counts de Rodez. The French family sent its descendant, Baron Gerard de Rodes, back to England and through him an English branch was established.

Being of great antiquity; the family of Rodes flourished for several centuries in the Counties of Nottingham, Lincoln, York and Derby. The first settler on record in England, of this family, Gerard de Rodes, was a feudal baron, the capital seat of whose barony was Horn Castle in Lincolnshire. Horn Castle was a soke or seignory of thirteen lordships and Gerard De Rodes was consequently one of the greater barons, his absence as ambassador will account for his name not occurring on the Roll of Magna Charta, he having been sent by King John, 29th March, in the 9th year of his reign, ambassador to foreign parts. Baron Gerard de Rodes received from Richard I the lordships of Langar and Barneston, in Nottinghamshire. They were confirmed in him by King John. Baron Gerard also owned the estates of “Clifton and Wilford,” of Nottinghamshire, previously owned by William Peverill. They came to him during the reign of King John. They passed to Ralph de Rodes, his son, “a very great man,” who owned them during the the reign of Henry III. Clifton and Wilford passed to Gerard, Lord of Melles, at the end of Henry’s reign or at the beginning Edward I’s, and he granted them to Sir Gervase de Clifton, Steward to Sir Ralph de Rodes. Langar was granted to Sir Gerards other son, John de Rodes

Brothers in Trouble at Rufford abbey

An apparent outrage was participated in by two of the monks of this house in 1317, as to which we have only the statement of complaint. On 10 December 1317 a commission was appointed to inquire into the charge made against Andrew le Botiller, Richard de Balderton, John de Rodes, Thomas de Rodes, together with Brother William Sausemer and Brother Thomas de Nonyngton, monks of the house of Rufford, of gathering to them a multitude of men and seizing Thomas de Holme, as he was passing between the abbey of Rufford and the grange of Roewood (Rohagh), robbing him of his goods, and taking him to some unknown place and there detaining him until he should satisfy them with a ransom of 200 pounds

A measure of the character of the De Rodes family some might say!


In the 14th century the De Rodes` had prospered by always being at the beck and call of the Kings and princes of England. In 1314 Sir John de Rodes had come back from Flanders to serve in King Edwards army against Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn and died in the service of his legitimate monarch.

A Sir John Rodes, knight, was appointed master of the household to Edward the Black Prince of Wales. Sir John was at Crecy in 1346 and Poictiers in 1356. He lived in Aquitaine, returning to England shortly before his death, in 1381, in the service of King Richard II.
“He was a splendid example of the virtues and vices fostered by the spirit of chivalry”

Todate, no record has been found of the Rodes` at any other major campaigns during the Hundred Year War, but it can be assumed that, because of their status, they would have been present and taken part at some level. A few generations later, the Rodes estates seem to have been disposed or divided of in Nottinghamshire, and others retained in Yorkshire and Derbyshire where a branch of the family moved. This was founded by William Rodes who married Emme, daughter and heiress of John Cachehors of Staveley Woodthorp in Derbyshire. This remained the family seat until Barlborough Hall was built By Francis Rodes Esq, justice, in about 1583. Sir Francis took part in the trial of Mary, “Queen of Scotts” His son, Sir John Rodes, knight, sold Staveley and made Barlborough Hall the family residence.

This information came from the great folk at: http://modernchivalry.org/knights/view/Baldrick

16 Replies to “de Rodes, aka, the first Rhodes’ of England”

  1. I’ve be doing some research into my family and fine this very fascinating . In a very amateurism way, I believe that I may be a direct descendant of Sir Francis Rodes, son of John Rodes and Attelina Hewet.

    1. Then we must be family. I have traced my Rhoads heritage all they back to Francis Rodes as well!

      1. Hi Phil. It is very, very possible we are cousins and I have been looking for another RHODES from the area my family came from. My name has the ‘a’ in it. I believe it to be GGGgrandfather who added it due to family in the news and he didn’t want to be associated.

        I, too, descend from Francis Rodes. I was born in West Virginia where there is a large number of RHODES/RHOADES’

        My direct email is rawnrhoades63@gmail.com. I would enjoy connecting with you!

        S. Rawn Rhoades

        1. Hi!! My Rhodes are from west virginia as well, my grandfather was from there. I’ve traced the Rhodes back to this line. Crazy thing about it all, is king bruce of Scotland was my 21st great grandfather. So these 2 didn’t appreciate each other lol.

      2. HI Phil

        My line is very clear back to when my line came to the USA… Then to me it gets a bit cloudy as my line, my ancestor Hezekiah Rhodes was born on the Isle Of Guernsey, Channel Island whose ancestor I have read was Sir John Rodes, MP, of Barlborough. I am not sure how accurate this is… Still I plan to visit Barlborough area sometime next year… would love to hear from you … I am in South Carolina and live less than 20 miles from where my family moved to in the early 1770… Have a great one.
        Keith Rhodes

      3. This is my family, these are all my great grandfather’s. But king Bruce is also my 21st great grandfather. So the Rhodes is my mother’s dad, and the Bruce side comes from my 4th great grandfather. It’s sad because both side’s of my family fought for thier countries. But my scottish Irish heritage was over run by the English settling. I’ve been doing a lot of ancestral healing and connecting spiritually, and my wiccan side hurt’s due to loosing our way of life. Funny what you learn, and how you can heal in life when you truly know who you are ❤

  2. Am a direct descendant of Sir John Rodes Knight of Barlborough. Sir John Rodes Knight of Barlborough is my 12 great grandpa

  3. I am a grand daughter (many generations hence) of Charles Rodes who settled in Nelson County, VA. I still live on the same land in Nelson County, VA (United States) that my ancestors owned. I still have the Rodes surname as well.

    1. That is awesome, I wish I was so fortunate!
      I hope you had a wonderful Christmas, and will have a great new year!

      Good hunting and all the best,

      Carl Rhodes

      http://www.rhodesfamily.org : Our Back Rhodes Genealogy Pages, the website for Rhoades, Rhoads, Rhodes, Rhodus, Roads, de Rodes, Rodes etc. family genealogy. “I hope you find your missing link among my links.”
      http://carl.rhodesfamily.org/register.php?personID=I1&tree=Carls&generations=4 : my web page dedicated to William & Susannah Rhodes and their descendants.
      http://www.carl.rhodesfamily.org : is the site dedicated to all of my ancestors, (Carl) and my wife’s (Elaine (Grove) Rhodes).
      “Read up on what happened before you were born; dig into the past, understand your roots. Ask your parents what it was like before you were born; ask the old-ones, they’ll tell you a thing or two.. Deuteronomy 32:7”

  4. My brother John and I (John has done all the hard work!) have been searching our ancestry and he had initially got back to Robert Rhodes 1470-1510 but we have now gone back further to Gerard de Rhodes (1154-1189) which is fascinating. We now live in New Zealand after emigrating in 1973 from Manchester in England (also previously lived in Salford) our father was born in Wigan in 1910. Great to find this website. Greetings to you all!

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