The ‘Scottish Marches’ is the border country on both sides of the border between Scotland and England. From the Norman conquest of England until the reign of James VI of Scotland (who also became James I of England), border clashes were common and the monarchs of both countries relied on March Lords to defend the frontier areas known as the Marches.
One of my ancestors, Geoffery Proctor of Bordley, North Yorkshire was a yeoman/farmer, and the Treasurer for Henry Algernon Percy, the 6th Earl of Northumberland.
Before that, geneologically speaking, the trail went cold…, until recently. When Joe Proctor, the system administrator for the Proctor Geneaology website House of Proctor emailed me to let me know about Medieval Soldiers’ records recently release by the UK. The detailed service records of 250,000 medieval soldiers, including archers and men-at-arms, who served with Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt, have gone online.
The service records survive because the English exchequer had a very modern obsession with wanting to be sure that the government’s money was being spent as intended.” ~ Dr. Adrian Bell, The University of Reading
The Roll’s ‘Remarkable Survival’
“The website is the product of a research project by Professor Anne Curry of the University of Southampton and Dr Adrian Bell of the University of Reading. Dr Bell said: ‘The service records survive because the English exchequer had a very modern obsession with wanting to be sure that the government’s money was being spent as intended. Therefore we have the remarkable survival of indentures for service detailing the forces to be raised, muster rolls showing this service and naming every soldier from duke to archer.'”
Muster roll database
The online muster roll database currently holds just under 90,000 service records. These are taken from muster rolls, housed in The National Archives (TNA), for the years 1369 – 1453.
If you do a search for “Proctour” you find:
William Proctour, Man-at-arms, Commander: Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland 1383 – 1385, Scottish Marches, BL_Cotton_Roll_XIII.8 m4
So that would explain the relationship between the Proctors and the Percys. William Proctour was a Man-at-arms for Henry Percy, the Earl of Northumberland. This puts Geoffery Proctour’s family in the service of the Percy family for six generations.