He is 17th Great Grandfather of Frances Braden Hooks Hensel. My Maternal grandmother.
William I Longsword (French: Guillaume Longue-Épée, Latin: Willermus Longa Spata, Scandinavian: Vilhjálmr Langaspjót; 893 – 17 December 942) was the second Duke of Normandy from his father's death until his own assassination. The title dux (duke) was not in use at the time and has been applied to early Norman rulers retroactively; William actually used the title comes (count) .
He is Rollo and Poppa’s son. William succeeded his father about 927. He first appears in 933 as a leader of the Normans ["Willelmus, princeps Nordmannorum, eidem regi se committit; cui etiam rex dat terram Brittonum in ora maritima sitam." Flodoard, Annales, s.a. 933, 55; van Houts (2000), 45], In William's day the Rollonid principality was still a fragile entity centered around Rouen and, in terms of Realpolitik, not extending far west of the Seine His early years are obscure, Dudo of Saint-Quentin states that he was born in Rouen and, in a later passage, describes him as a "young man" one year before his father's death His father chose him as heir one year before his death. Guillaume de Jumièges records that he was born before his father's marriage to Gisela and his remarriage with Popa after Gisela's death.. He often had rebellion early in his reign from the Normans who felt he had become too much like the French. He quelled a rebellion by the Viking chief Riulf after the latter besieged Rouen. In return for swearing allegiance to Raoul King of France, he appears to have been granted rights to further territory along the coast in 933, maybe the Cotentin and Avranchin. If this is correct, it would have created rivalry with the dukes of Brittany. He was known to continually want to expand his territories by conquering or extracting them from Louis IV for the price of homage .Responding to raids by Guillaume, Arnoul I Count of Flanders invaded Ponthieu and in 939 captured Montreuil from Herluin Comte de Ponthieu, although it was recaptured by Guillaume's forces. In 939, Guillaume joined the alliance against Louis IV King of France which was led by Otto I "der Große" King of Germany (Hugh The Great) who raided Frankish territory. Guillaume, however, met King Louis at Amiens, receiving a confirmation of the grant of his lands in Normandy. Guillaume de Jumièges records that Guillaume was tricked into a meeting on the river Seine at Pecquigny by Arnoul Count of Flanders to settle their dispute over the castle of Montreuil, but was murdered on Count Arnoul's orders, recording his death on 17 Dec
A Planctus (mourning poem) was composed probably shortly after; Jules Lair suggests plausibly if not definitively that it was in 943. (Catalog references: Chevalier 10576; Walther 10205; Schaller & Ewald Könsgen 8813; Yearley L81.) Two manuscripts of the planctus survive, both dating from the early 11th century. Neither is very good, and both are apparently derived from an earlier version that does not survive.
It is by far the earliest work written about the Normans from a Norman point of view, and some historical nuggets can be gleaned from it.
His son Richard the Fearless, child of his first wife, Sprota, succeeded him. William also left a widow, Liègard (Liutgard), who died in 985.
The funerary monument of William Longsword in the cathedral of Rouen, France. The monument is from the XIVth century.