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The Viking Connection (Read 5396 times)
Mel Ruller
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The Viking Connection
Sep 28th, 2006 at 10:19am
The Ruler/Ruller/ Roullours/Rullos/Rollo and Viking Connection.

In about 1980, I (Mel Ruller), met an elderly gentleman in Ottawa, a Mr. Rowe, now deceased, who was a Genealogist and one of only two members in Canada, of a world genealogical organization known as “The Harleinan Society.”  Mr. Rowe promised to do some research for me on the name Ruller and true to his word he contacted me a few days later and said, “The Rullers are descended from Vikings and originated in Normandy. He said, the word Normandy, means “Land of the Norsemen” and gave me the following explanation.

The Vikings liked to raid all up and down the Atlantic coast of Europe. They especially liked France because they could sail their boats right up the river Seine, all the way to Paris, and pillage and burn as they went. In the year 911, an especially feared Viking,  named Rollo, (or sometimes known as Rolf), approached the coast of France with raiding intentions and after a minor skirmish was approached by the then King of France, King Charles the Simple, with a proposal. Rollo would take over the entire coastline of France and in return, swear allegiance to the King of France. Rollo would become the first Duke of Normandy which would comprise all of the land along the coast. Part of the deal was that this way Rollo would protect France from any further Viking raids. Of Course Rollo accepted the deal and the rest is History. (This entire story is well documented in History and you can find enough information to keep you occupied for weeks if you start at Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login and follow the links. Or search Rollo on Google.)

A third generation descendent of Rollo, also a Duke of Normandy was William The Conquerer, landed in England at Hastings on the 28th of September in the year 1066 and on the 14th of Oct in the same year, attacked  and engaged Harold the King of England at the famous battle of Hastings. (The following paragraph is copied from a History I found on a website, by searching under William The Conquerer.) “After hours of holding firm against the Normans, the tired English forces finally succumbed to the onslaught. Harold and his brothers died fighting in the Hastings battle, removing any further organized Anglo-Saxon resistance to the Normans. The earls and bishops of the witan hesitated in supporting William, but soon submitted and crowned him William I on Christmas Day 1066. The kingdom was immediately besieged by minor uprisings, each one individually and ruthlessly crushed by the Normans, until the whole of England was conquered and united in 1072. William punished rebels by confiscating their lands and allocating them to the Normans. Uprisings in the northern counties near York were quelled by an artificial famine brought about by Norman destruction of food caches and farming implements.” As you can see, William confiscated lands in and around the city of York, (Yorkshire) and gave them to his loyal Normans who came with him from Normandy. The story goes that the Ancestors of the Yorkshire Rulers were Norman descendents of Rollo (and possibly William the Conquerer!
I was further informed by Mr. Rowe in Ottawa, that in a book titled “Origins of Anglo Norman Families” published by The Harleinan Society, of which he was a member, on page 86, it says that “Rollos -Rullos – Roullours are variances of a town in Calvados, Normandy and that a full account of the family, under-tenants of the Honour of Richmond in Yorkshire, is given in another book called “Early Yorkshire Charters, Volume 5 pages 95 to 99”.
I have had the Ottawa Public Library searched all of North America including Libraries and Universities. They found a copy at the University of Alberta, but volume 5 was “out”. It never showed up and they cancelled my request. The Ottawa Library was able to give me the full title, Author and Publisher as follows;
Early Yorkshire Charters, being a collection of documents anterior to the thirteenth century made from the public records, monastic cartularies, Rodger Dodsworth’s Manuscripts and other available sources. Edited by William Farrer, Edinburg, Printed for the editor by Ballantyne, Hanson 1914. (Update. In 2004, another Ruller descendent and researcher who lives in Alberta, Mick Beale,after reading this account, managed to obtain a copy of the book through an acquaintance at the University of Alberta. The pages refered to and the entire book is a detailed and complex descrition of the lands of Yorkshire and who they belonged to since the days of William the Conquerer a thousand years ago. I have found the name Rollo and numerous variations of that name that closely approach and could sound like Ruler, but I have not found a direct connection.) I also attempted to obtain a copy from York City, the Capitol city of Yorkshire, England. So at the British High Commission in Ottawa, I obtained the name and address of the archivist at York and wrote to her June 23, 1983. I never received a response.
Compiled by Mel Ruller and updated January 22, 2005 at Elora, Ontario, Canada
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Mel Ruller&&mruller@cogeco.ca&&1-519-846-0425&&39 Sophia Street, Elora, Ont. N0B 1S0 Canada
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Re: The Viking Connection
Reply #1 - Dec 17th, 2006 at 4:16am
I am a descendent of Charles Wesley Ruller who was married to Pearl Kennedy.  I remember hearing as a little girl that my ancestors had been vikings, but now I know how it caem about.
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