Whatever happened to David ap Rhys, Prince of South Wales (1660-1745)?David Rhys is said to have migrated to the U.S.- for what reason?  Did he give up his throne?  What became of his...

Whatever happened to David ap Rhys, Prince of South Wales (1660-1745)?

David Rhys is said to have migrated to the U.S.- for what reason?  Did he give up his throne?  What became of his family/descendants?

Expert Answers
Karen P.L. Hardison eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The information on David Ap Rhys is scant, in fact, there is no genealogical mention of David Rhys having come to America.

There were two branches of the Ap Rhys (or Rees) family, one in North Wales and one in South Wales. David Ap Rees was of the South Wales branch. The firmest record available is for Rhys ap Griffith in 1171 who was Prince of South Wales. After marrying with the "Norman Conquerors of England," a distinct English line of the Rees family arose, first recorded in 1599.

David Ap Rhys (Rees) Prince of S. Wales, son of Thomas Rhys (Rees) Prince of S Wales, and father of Rev. David Ap Rhys (Rees) were of the English and had assumed the name spelling of "Rees." It is recorded that Sir Thomas Rees (was Rhys) immigrated to American and settled in the Isle of Wight County in Virginia (with very poor old records) in 1648. Edward Rees, of the English branch but with no connection to Sir Thomas Rees's direct family line, followed and settled in Northampton, Virginia, in 1650. The American emigres added the extra "e" making the spelling Reese. These two men were the founders of the majority of the Reese families in America at the present day.

The final history of the kingdoms of North and South Wales was resolved in the Act of Union 1536:

Finally the unilateral Act of Union in 1536 "incorporated, united and annexed" "Our Dominion, Principality and Countrey of Wales''  to England. Since then English law and government has ruled in Wales, and Wales has constitutionally followed the same path as England

rhiannon2reese | Student

Lots of info on this man in Reese genealogy in America...I am from both the Norman family of Clare in Wales and the Rhys families...I can place both families on the same plot of ground fighting over Pembroke Castle.  There are some missing links in America....

bustanai | Student

My ancestor Thomas ap Rhys. Surname in America is Rice!

bryantreese | Student
Actually i have no answer but only a question. I find that following the Reese roots that there is one fact that i run into and that is i came across a web page of David Reese (An original signer of The Mecklenburg Declration) and geneology reports states that he was a descendent of Prince of Wales David Rhys and also he married a Susan Polk which was of royal blood. In my geneology trace I,(it) supposenly goes back to the same Lords descendants but i can not find where he is mentioned with ancestory.com I believe there is a Thomas or a William born abt.1709 a year before David Reese Did he deliberatly hide records to not disgrace his father by his backing of the declaration or is the tree incorrect. The tree was very simple to follow and seemed very accurate because they always named fathers, mother,children dates etc. So is it possible he kept a secret or is there a simpler answer?
dreecexiii | Student

My name is David Austin Reece III, and through studying my family's geneology I have come to discover I may be a direct decendant, the 13th great-grandson, of Sir Davydd Ap. Rhys, Prince of South Wales. Skepticism is gladly welcome, as my own information gets a bit murky concerning the first American born generations of the Rees family. I also understand there are many different Reece/Reese familys throughout the United States, but I have concretely traced my lineage to a Thomas Rees and Jane Harris in PA. c. 1700. and that there is a jumble of Thomas and Davids throughout that era. Most all of the men in my line are named David, Thomas, William or Edward and as my picture attached clearly depicts, we are in fact "of the reds." I am truly intrigued by this post and others like it, and apologize for the somewhat contemptuous nature of my reply, but this subject (to me) is very important, and any additional information would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,