Family History




Born: ?

Buried: 1780 Ashington

Married: 1755 Wiston Edward Merritt

Mary married 23/6/1755 Wiston Edward Merritt as Mary Dinig. The banns give her name as Dinnage, Marriage witnessed by William Pennant and John ? Mary Merritr was buried 21/2/1780 Ashington (wife of Edward)

I have been unable to trace a baptism for Mary yet. However it is certain she must be from the Dinnage family of Horsham. It is remarkable that this name from the mid 17th century was not only a name almost solely confined to Sussex but within Sussex to Horsham and three nearby parishes (with one Dinnage moving to Piddinghoe, East Sussex). As you can see from the following it is likeliest that a Dinnage, possibly John, moved to Sussex in the first half of the 17th century, maybe due to the Civil War, with perhaps sons Thomas, Nicholas and John. This link has yet to be proved. As for Mary the only baptisms I’ve come across are two in 1726, one to John Dinnage and the other to Jonah. This would have made her 47 when daughter Martha was born, just feasible. Even if a Mary born later does turn up then she also would have been descended from one of the three Thomas, Nicholas and John.

1841 census Dinig – none - Dinnage – 1841 – 74 Sussex , 1 Surrey – no others

‘This most interesting surname is of early medieval English origin, and derives from the Anglo-Latin word "dennagium, dennage, donage", meaning to stow or secure with dunnage. Hence dunnage was the term given to brushwood, mats, or any light, loose material which was stowed among and beneath the cargo of a vessel to keep it from being damaged by chafing or sea water. Thus the name was an occupational surname for someone who packed or loaded a ship. Early examples of the surname, from London, Devonshire and Sussex Church Registers include the christening of John, son of John Downage, on January 31st 1601, at the Church of St. Peter le Poer, London; the marriage of Mary Dennidge and John Payn, at the Church of St. Margaret's, Westminster, London, on May 26th 1650; the christening of Thomas, son of Nicholas and Mary Denidge, on October 2th 1668, at Horsham in Sussex; and the christening of Daniel, son of Samuel and Mary Dimnage, on September 22nd 1746, at St. Leonard's Church, Shoreditch, in London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Julian Dennynge, which was dated 1559’

The IGI has very few records of Dinnages before the marriages in Sussex. A John Dounage son of John was baptised St Margaret Lothbury 3/5/1590 and three children in St Peter-le-Poer London; Mary Dounnage 30/6/1599, Ausrey 19/10/1600 and John Dounage son of John 3/5/1590. Slightly earlier Robert Donage was married thrice and had children between 1572 and 1590 in Soham, Cambridgeshire. Later a Mary Dennidge daughter of John was baptised St Margaret Westminster 26/5/1650.

A John married 1704 in Sawbridgeworth, Herts. A Rose married William Holmes 18/7/1617 Norwich. A Charles and mary had a son Thomas baptised 25/12/1683 St Dunstan

Mostly a West Sussex name which in 18th century gradually spread out from Horsham. Variants are Dinnidge, Denige, Dinage, Dinedge, Dinnige, Dennedge, Dineg


JOHN MERRITT born 1757 Ashington died 1830 married:1777 Imlen Greenfield

RICHARD MERRITT born 1759 Ashington died1821 married1783

Katherine Parsons married 1786 Catherine Reaps/Feast

SARAH MERRITT born 1761 Ashington married 1791 Wiston Richard Wood

EDWARD MERRITT born 1763 Ashington died 1824 married 16/2/1785 Rachel Standen.

ANN MERRITT born 1765 marrie 1785 James Jutten

JENNY MERRITT Born 1766 Married Thomas Potter

THOMAS MERRITT born 1767 died1847 Wiston married Mary Liliot .

HARRY MERRITT Born 1771 Died1777 Ashington

WILLIAM MERRITT Born 1771 possibly died1773 Ashington

MARTHA MERRITT Born 1773 died 1819 married THOMAS STEER