VOSS from Dorset

Although this is my own patrilineal line, I knew virtually nothing of this aspect of my family until I started researching in late 1997.

In my family there was an oral tradition that “the first Voss came over with William of Orange, was the first man ashore at Weymouth, and married a local girl.” Which William of Orange and when is not recalled.  The Vosses in Dorset pre-date the Orange landings and, in any event, none were at Weymouth but further west.

Not all those in Dorset with the name Voss are of Dorset origin.   Great care is needed.  My G Grandfather Albert VOSS was borne  1840 in Melcome Regis and grew up there, but the Albert VOSS in the Wyke Regis 1881 census had parents borne in Adeloe, Germany.

Capt Edward Voss
Capt Edward Voss

The earliest Dorset Voss I have found was borne there about 1630.  Whether the name goes back further or whether they arrived from elsewhere is not known.   There were Vosses predating this in north Somerset and Glamorgan, where the name goes back to 15C.  See the section on the origins of the name.

There was, and still is, a particular concentration of Vosses in and around Dorchester.  Winterborne Came, just south of Dorchester, was home to many generations of Voss.  They were artisans, such as cabinet makers, and several were parish clerks.  Other strongholds were Broadmayne, West Knighton and Stinsford.

Later Melcome Regis, Wyke Regis and subsequently Weymouth were home to numerous Vosses.  My own grandfather grew up there.

The life and times of Capt. Edward VOSS

The connection with Thomas Hardy.

3 thoughts on “VOSS from Dorset

  1. I have a Richard Vos(s) baptised on 2 Dec 1741 at Fordington , Dorchester, s/o Henry and Edith Vos(s). He fits nicely between the children you have for Henry and Edith nee Pouncy. Richard was my 5 x great grandfather

  2. Thank you so much for this research and information. I live in New Zealand so don’t have access to many sources in the UK. Your information on the Voss family is amazing. Edward’s brother, John, married
    Harriet Jane Shute Richardson
    BIRTH 1812 • Melcombe Regis, Dorset, England
    DEATH 24 OCT 1873 • New York City, New York, USA

    -who is my 1st cousin 4x removed.

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