Although the name MAY has an ancient Norman origin, it first arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name MAY is derived from the Old French work mai. This name was also a nickname for a person with a particularly sunny disposition or a person who had an anecdotal connection with the month of May. Often this connection would be the time that feudal obligations were owed. Nicknames, such as MAY, that described the time or season of the birth, baptism or conversion of the original bearer were frequently adopted in the medieval era. The name has been spelled May, Maye, Mays and Mai.

The first evidence of the MAY family appears to be in Sussex, in southern England. Sussex was once a part of the kingdom of the south Saxons, which was founded in the late 5th century. In 1825, Sussex became a part of the kingdom of Wessex. By the 12th century, the MAY family had expanded in size and branched to Sutton Cheyney in Leicestershire, Rawmere in Sussex, and the county of Berwickshire. Early records of the MAY family reveal that in 1296, William May swore an oath of allegiance to King Edward I of England, who conquered Scotland that year.

A number of early immigrants to North America bore the name MAY or a variant including Cornelius May who arrived in Virginia in 1616, Dorothy May who arrived on the Mayflower in 1620, William May settled in St Christopher in 1634 and Peter Maye who landed in the Bay of Bulls, Newfoundland in 1675.


Our May family including Weaver, Pickford, Soar, Hogg & Williams

Small numbers by a name refer to personal number in listing eg JAMES 2 MAY ~ see 2.

I am also recording my May family on Ancestry.com & WikiTree.com


1.~ ~ ~ ISAAC CHRISTOPHER MAY was baptized on 24 April 1785 in Hampshire, England.

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Isaac married ELIZABETH (surname possibly HART) in 1806 and their children included:

*                  ANNIE MAY, born 17 August 1807.

*                  SARAH MAY, born 09 May 1809.

*                  THOMAS MAY, born 04 August 1811.

*                  MARY MAY, born 10 May 1814.

*                  ISAAC MAY, born 31 July 1817; died August 1834.

*                  JAMES MAY, born 07 May 1820; died 1821-1822.

*                  JAMES 2 MAY, born 11 August 1822; died before 1861.

*                  GEORGE MAY, born 17 November 1824; died 1825-1826.

*                  GEORGE MAY, born 16 May 1826.

Isaac died in 1862 and was buried on 26 September 1862 in Swanage, Dorset.




2. ~ ~ ~ JAMES MAY (ISAAC) was born on 11 August 1822 and was christened on 15 September 1822 in Swanage, Dorset. James was a Mariner and he married SUSANNAH WEAVER. Susannah was born on 17 August 1830 in Eling, Hampshire, England and was the eighth child of JAMES WEAVER and MARY PHILPOT.

> Refer to the WEAVER family for more information about the family of Susannah.

Children of JAMES MAY and SUSANNAH WEAVER included:

*                  JAMES ISAAC 3 MAY, born 09 April 1852 in Eling, Hampshire.

*                  AUGUSTINE THOMAS 4 MAY, born 04 April 1854 in Southampton, Hampshire. James died prior to 1861 and Susannah was recorded on the 1861 Census as a Widow aged 30 years. She was living with her parents and her two boys in Rumbridge, Eling, Hampshire.


3. ~ ~ ~ JAMES ISAAC MAY (ISAAC > JAMES) was born on 9 April 1852 in Eling, Hampshire, England and was the eldest son of JAMES MAY and SUSANNAH WEAVER. In 1861 James, his brother Augustine and mother are living with the Weaver family in Rumbridge, Eling, Hampshire.

James married GRACE ELIZABETH SOPHIA SAUNDERS who was born around 1858 in Gravesend, Kent, England. The 1881 Census records James and Grace and their two eldest daughters living at 8, 9 and 10 Arcade, Holdenhurst in Hampshire. James's occupation was listed as Shopman, Stationer and Bookbinder. (James's brother Augustine was living at 12 Arcade, Holdenhurst)

Children of JAMES MAY and GRACE SAUNDERS were:

*                  ETHEL GRACE MAY, born around 1880 in Lambeth, Surrey, England. Ethel married ARCHIBALD BAXTER RICHARDSON in 1905.

*                  KATE ADA MAY, born 8 September 1880 in Bournemouth, Hampshire. The 1901 Census lists Kate as an Assistant Schoolmistress, aged 20 years living in Winton, Hampshire. She died on 22 September 1961 in Bournemouth.

*                  SUSAN EVANGLINE MAY, born around 1882 in Bournemouth, Hampshire. Susan is living in Winton, Bournemouth as a single woman in 1911.

*                  WINIFRED 5 MAY, born 20 September 1883 in Bournemouth, Hampshire.

*                  CHRISTABEL 6 MAY, born July 1890 in Hampshire, England.

James died on 26 June 1933 in Bournemouth, Dorset.

4. ~ ~ ~ AUGUSTINE THOMAS MAY (ISAAC > JAMES) was born on 04 April 1854 at 2 Compton Walk, Southampton in Hampshire, England and was the second son of JAMES MAY and SUSANNAH WEAVER. In 1861 Augustine, his brother James and mother are living with the Weaver family in Rumbridge, Eling, Hampshire.

The 1881 Census records Augustine living at 12 Arcade, Holdenhurst in Hampshire and his occupation is listed as a Greengrocer. (Augustine's brother James and his family were living at 8, 9 and 10 Arcade, the 11 Arcade being a Post Office) Augustine arrived in New Zealand in 1884 on the Old Ionic and his occupation was listed as a Carpenter.

Augustine became friends with EMANUEL PICKFORD on the journey to New Zealand. Augustine married Emanuel's sister ROSA EMMA PICKFORD on 9 February 1886 in Sandon, Fielding, New Zealand. Rosa was born on 13 July 1964 in Great Elm, Somerset, England, the daughter of JOB PICKFORD and SARAH ANN DAVIDGE. She arrived in New Zealand on 03 March 1885 on the Rimutaka maiden voyage. Her occupation was listed as a Cook.

> Refer to the PICKFORD family for more information about the family of Rosa, including her brother Emanuel Pickford who arrived in NZ with Augustine in 1884.

After their marriage Augustine and Rosa bought a grocery business in Rongatea and then had a farm at Horopito. (Horopito is now well known for Horopito Motors which is the largest vintage car dismantler in Australasia) About 1902 they settled in Raetihi and had a small milk run and a carpentry shop. They also had two more children who both died as babies.


*                  THOMAS JAMES (TOMMY) 7 MAY, born 24 October 1886.

*                  ANNIE EVELINE MAY, born 18 October 1893 in Horopito, NZ. Annie married RICHARD HENRY BENNETT in 1915. Richard was born in 1885 in Woonana, New South Wales, Australia. Annie and Richard farmed at Raetihi and in later years lived in Tauranga. Richard died in October 1934 in Auckland. Annie died on 6 December 1978.

*                  GLADYS ELLEN 8 MAY, born 22 September 1895 in Sandon, Fielding, NZ.

*                  LUCY JANE 9 MAY, born 24 July 1900.

*                  MARJORIE 10 MAY, born 24 September 1902 in Raetihi, NZ; died 1 September 1979 in Papatoetoe, Auckland.

*                  WILLIAM EDWARD (BILL) 11 MAY, born 20 December 1904.

*                  NELLIE MAY, who died aged two and a half years of scarlet fever (birth date unknown)

Augustine died 5 February 1947 in Raetihi and was buried at Raetihi Cemetery (Row 33 Plot 1). Rosa died on 4 September 1948


7. ~ ~ ~ THOMAS JAMES (TOMMY) MAY (ISAAC > JAMES > AUGUSTINE) was born on 24 October 1886 in Palmerston North, New Zealand, the eldest child of AUGUSTINE MAY and ROSA PICKFORD. Thomas married MAREN CHRISTINA NIELSON on 6 December 1912 in Auckland. Maren was born on 06 July 1893.

Children of THOMAS MAY and MAREN NIELSON were:

*                  ANNIE MAY, born 11 March 1913. Annie married KEN GLEESON. She died on 17 August 1984.

*                  ETHEL MAY, born 1913. Ethel married JOHN DEVEREUX on 23 August 1935.

*                  NELLIE MAY, born 23 March 1915. Nellie married EDWARD JAMES BYRON RUSSELL. She died on 3 September 1987.

*                  ERNEST JAMES 11 MAY, born 17 May 1916.

*                  FRANK MAY, born 24 November 1921. Frank married JOYCE (surname unknown)

*                  GLADYS MAY, born 16 February 1925; died about 1953.

*                  IRIS MAY, born 20 March 1927. Iris married KEN WRIGHTSON.

*                  WILLIAM MAY, born 27 May 1928; died about 1940.

Tommy died in 1959 and was buried at Mangatera Cemetery in Dannevirke, Manawatu-Wanganui, NZ.

8. ~ ~ ~ GLADYS ELLEN MAY (ISAAC > JAMES > AUGUSTINE) was born on 22 September 1895 in Sandon, Fielding, NZ and was the second daughter of AUGUSTINE MAY and ROSA PICKFORD.

Gladys married HAROLD VICTOR SOAR on 9 February 1916. Harold was born on 24 May 1888 in Auckland, NZ and was the son of RICHARD SOAR and LYDIA AMELIA CARTER. Gladys and Harold farmed at Piriaka after their marriage and in 1928 were living at Pukemiro in the Waikato, NZ.

Children of GLADYS MAY and HAROLD SOAR were:

o      GWENDOLINE MAY SOAR, born 28 November 1916. Gwen was a flower girl at the marriage of her aunt MARJORIE MAY on 17 April 1929. She married RICHARD WILLIAM COUGHLAN in 1939 and they had two children.

o      BETTY ROSA SOAR, born 18 December 1919. Betty married (1) LEONARD GROSS on 12 June 1944 and they had one child. She later married (2) ROBERT HUGHES on 22 August 1953 and they had two children. Betty died on 15 June 2012.

o      RICHARD AUGUSTINE MURRAY SOAR, born 1 August 1924 in Raetihi, New Zealand. Richard married PATRICIA LOFTUS on 9 June 1951 in Wellington. They raised a family of eight children.

o      JACK HUTCHINSON SOAR, born 12 September 1930. Jack married DOREEN TUTTY on 27 February 1954 and they had two children.

Gladys died on 26 April 1979. Harold died on 7 March 1965.

9. ~ ~ ~ LUCY JANE MAY (ISAAC > JAMES > AUGUSTINE), was born on 24 July 1900 and was the third daughter of AUGUSTINE MAY and ROSA PICKFORD.

Lucy married ANDREW GORDON MUNN HOGG on 8 February 1922. Andrew was born on 1 May 1895.

Children of LUCY MAY and ANDREW HOGG included:

o       NEVILLE AUGUSTINE HOGG, born 22 December 1922 in Raetihi, NZ. Neville married BETTY JANE DOLAN in California, USA on 2 December 1956 and they had two children. Betty was born on 1 August 1924 in Patterson, New Jersey, USA and was the daughter of LEO DOLAN and CARRIE MAE WILLIAMS. She died on 19 May 2004. Neville died in Australia on 30 June 2003.

In 1978 Lucy and Andrew were living in Papatoetoe, Auckland.

Lucy died on 24 October 1983 in Otahuhu, Auckland. Andrew died on 28 June 1982. They were both buried at Papatoetoe Cemetery in Papatoetoe, Auckland.

10. ~ ~ ~ MARJORIE MAY (ISAAC > JAMES > AUGUSTINE) was born on 24 September 1902 in Raetihi, NZ. Marjorie was the forth daughter of AUGUSTINE MAY and ROSA PICKFORD. Marjorie was a tiny baby, weighing only just over 2 pounds at birth.

Marjorie married HARRY WILLIAMS at St Mary's Anglican Church in Raetihi on 17 April 1929. Harry was born on 1 December 1886 in the Kauaeranga Valley, Thames and was the son of THOMAS WALKER and ELLEN WALKER.

> Refer to the WILLIAMS family for more information about Harry and his family.

Marjorie and Harry settled in Pukemiro in the Waikato region and raised a family of four daughters. Around 1951 they moved to Takanini in South Auckland. Harry died on 1 April 1970.

After Harry's death Marjorie sold the big house in Takanini and moved to a unit in Railway Street East, Papakura. She remained active and still enjoyed playing outdoor bowls, her garden, and baking (her scones and apple shortcake being personal favourites)

Marjorie died on 1 September 1979 at a private rest home in Papatoetoe, Auckland. Harry and Marjorie were both cremated and their ashes were scattered on the site of the old Williams homestead in the Kauaeranga Valley, Thames.

11. ~ ~ ~ WILLIAM EDWARD (BILL) MAY (ISAAC > JAMES > AUGUSTINE) was born 20 December 1904 and was the second son of AUGUSTINE THOMAS MAY and ROSA EMMA PICKFORD.

Bill served with the NZ Armoured Corps, 2nd NZEF during World War Two. He married NORA CHARLOTTE SNOOKS. Norah was born about 1910. In 1943 they were living in Raetihi and later Bill lived in Wanganui.

Bill died on 18 June 1984 and was buried at Aramoho Cemetery in Wanganui. Norah died on 22 September 1970 in Wanganui.

12. ~ ~ ~ ERNEST JAMES MAY (ISAAC > JAMES > THOMAS) was born 17 May 1916 and was the eldest son of THOMAS JAMES MAY and MAREN CHRISTINA NIELSON.

Ernest served with the NZ Engineers, 2nd NZEF during World War Two and was awarded the Service Star, African Star, Italy Star, NZ Service Medal, and Defence Medal during his service.

Ernest married IVY ELSIE ROGERS on 16 February 1946 and they had three children. Ernest was buried in Dannevirke.

Please note that in keeping to genealogy publishing protocol I have not included information about later generations including living persons.

If you have a family connection please contact me for further information.

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