Abbotsham Devon Family History Guide

Abbotsham is an Ancient Parish in the county of Devon.

Other places in the parish include: Shepperton and Littleham.

Parish church: St. Helen

Parish registers begin: 1653

Nonconformists include: Wesleyan Methodist, Baptist

Parishes adjacent to Abbotsham

Historical Descriptions


The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

ABBOTSHAM, a parish in Bideford district, Devon; between Taw river and Barnstaple bay, 1½ mile W of Bideford r. station. It has a post office under Bideford; and contains the hamlet of Shepperton. Acres, 1,758. Real property, £2,267. Pop. 365. Houses, 67. The property is subdivided. Odun, Earl of Devon, in 878. vanquished and slew here the Danish invader Hubba, at Kenwith Castle. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Exeter. value, £159. Patron, E. U. Vidal, Esq. The church is a plain old structure with a square tower. There are a small Baptist chapel, and charities £11.

Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

Leonard’s Gazetteer of England and Wales 1850

Abbotsham, 2 m. W. Bideford. P.414.

Source: Leonard’s Gazetteer of England and Wales; Second Edition; C. W. Leonard, London; 1850

Lewis Topographical Dictionary of England 1845

Abbotsham (St. Helen), a parish, in the union of Bideford, hundred of Shebbear, Great Torrington and N. divisions of Devon, 2 miles (W.) from Bideford; containing with the hamlets of Shepperton and Littleham, 414 inhabitants. This parish, which is situated on the shore of Barnstaple Bay, is distinguished for a memorable victory over the Danes, who besieged the fortress, called Kenwith or Kenwic Castle, towards the close of the ninth century, on which occasion their main western army was routed, and 1200 of them, including their leader, slain, and their consecrated standard captured. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king’s books at £16. 4. 7.; it is in the patronage of the Crown, and the owners and occupiers of land are the impropriators. The great tithes have been commuted for a rent-charge of £32. 10., and the vicarial for £120; and there are nearly 34 acres of glebe. A school is partly supported by the principal proprietor of land, the vicar, and the curate.

Source: A Topographical Dictionary of England by Samuel Lewis Fifth Edition Published London; by S. Lewis and Co., 13, Finsbury Place, South. M. DCCC. XLV.

The Parliamentary Gazetteer of England and Wales 1840

ABBOTSHAM, a parish in the hund. of Shebbear, union of Bideford, Devonshire ; 2 miles west from Bideford. Living, a discharged vicarage in the archd. of Barnstaple and dio. of Exeter, rated at £16 4s. 7d. ; gross income £170. Patron, the crown. There is a National school here. Pop., in 1801, 313; in 1831, 387. Houses 75. Acres 2,090. A. P. £2,481. Poor rates, in 1837, £106.

Source: The Parliamentary Gazetteer of England and Wales; A Fullarton & Co. Glasgow; 1840.

A Topographical Dictionary of the United Kingdom 1808

Abbottsham. a parish in the hundred of Shebbear, Devon, 1½ mile from Bideford, and 203 from London, near the shore of Barnstable Bay; containing: 59 houses and 313 inhabitants: the living is a vicarage, value 16l. 4s. 7d. patron, the king.

Source: A Topographical Dictionary of the United Kingdom. Benjamin Pitts Capper. 1808.


Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales Circa 1870

SHEPPERTON, a hamlet in Abbotsham parish, Devon; 2 miles W of Bideford.

Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

Parish Records

Ancestry – Census & Voter Lists Birth, Marriage & Death Military Immigration & Emigration Directories & Member Lists Court, Land, Wills & Financial

FamilySearch – Birth Marriage & Death Census Migration & Naturalization Military Probate & Court

Birth Marriage and Death Records

England, Devon Bishop’s Transcripts, 1558-1887

England, Devon and Cornwall Marriages, 1660-1912

England, Devon, Parish Registers, 1538-1912


England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975

England Deaths and Burials, 1538-1991

England Marriages, 1538–1973

England and Wales Birth Registration Index, 1837-2008

England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007

England and Wales Marriage Registration Index, 1837-2005

England and Wales Non-Conformist Record Indexes (RG4-8), 1588-1977


Great Britain Deaths and Burials, 1778-1988

Great Britain Marriages, 1797-1988

Great Britain, Births and Baptisms, 1571-1977

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

Grave Indexes

BillionGraves Index

Find A Grave Index

Migration and Naturalisation Records

Migration Records at FamilySearch

Newspaper Archives

British Newspaper Archive, Family Notices

British Newspaper Archives, Obituaries

Census Records

England and Wales Census, 1841

England and Wales Census, 1851

England and Wales Census, 1861

England and Wales Census, 1871

England and Wales Census, 1881

England and Wales Census, 1891

England and Wales Census, 1901

England and Wales National Register, 1939

Probate and Court Records

England and Wales, National Index of Wills and Administrations, 1858-1957

Military Records

Great Britain, War Office Registers, 1772-1935

United Kingdom, Chelsea Pensioners’ Service Records, 1760-1913

United Kingdom, Merchant Navy Seamen Records, 1835-1941

United Kingdom, Militia Service Records, 1806-1915

United Kingdom, Royal Hospital Chelsea: Discharge Documents of Pensioners 1760-1887 (WO 122)

United Kingdom, World War I Service Records, 1914-1920

United Kingdom, World War I Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps Records, 1917-1920


History, Gazetteer and Directory of the County of Devon Including the City of Exeter: And Comprising a General Survey of the County and Separate … Hundreds, Unions, Parishes, Townships, Chapelries, Towns, Ports, Villages and Hamlets by William White (Amazon)

Historical Newspapers

Western Morning News

Western Times

Exeter and Plymouth Gazette

North Devon Journal

Express and Echo

Hartland and West Country Chronicle

See all Devon newspapers


Vision of Britain historical maps


  • County: Devon
  • Civil Registration District: Bideford
  • Probate Court: Court of the Bishop (Consistory) of the Archdeaconry of Barnstaple
  • Diocese: Exeter
  • Rural Deanery: Hartland
  • Poor Law Union: Bideford
  • Hundred: Shebbear
  • Province: Canterbury