Examinations, 1750-1766: nos 395-414

Chelsea Settlement and Bastardy Examinations, 1733-1766. Originally published by London Record Society, London, 1999.

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'Examinations, 1750-1766: nos 395-414', in Chelsea Settlement and Bastardy Examinations, 1733-1766, ed. Tim Hitchcock, John Black( London, 1999), British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/london-record-soc/vol33/pp125-132 [accessed 21 July 2024].

'Examinations, 1750-1766: nos 395-414', in Chelsea Settlement and Bastardy Examinations, 1733-1766. Edited by Tim Hitchcock, John Black( London, 1999), British History Online, accessed July 21, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/london-record-soc/vol33/pp125-132.

"Examinations, 1750-1766: nos 395-414". Chelsea Settlement and Bastardy Examinations, 1733-1766. Ed. Tim Hitchcock, John Black(London, 1999), , British History Online. Web. 21 July 2024. https://www.british-history.ac.uk/london-record-soc/vol33/pp125-132.

Examinations, 1750-1766: nos 395-414

395. [p. 173] Middlesex, to wit. The examination of Mary Wilkinson, lodging in the parish of Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, taken upon oath this [blank] Nov. 1760. This examinant, upon her oath saith that she is near 23 years of age, that she was born in the parish of Walton-on-Thames in the county of Surrey. That she was put out by the said parish of Walton as an apprentice to one Richard Henley, a weaver at Addlestone in the parish of Chertsey in the said county of Surrey. That she continued with her said master between six and seven years. That she never was married, that she never kept a house, or tenement of £10 by the year, paid any parish taxes, nor hath been a yearly hired servant in any one place for twelve months together since. This examinant upon her voluntary oath further says that she is now great with child or children which are likely to be born a bastard or bastards, and to become chargeable to the parish of Chelsea. And that Thomas Rayner, an in pensioner belonging to the sixth ward in his Majesty's Royal Hospital in the said parish of Chelsea had carnal knowledge of her body (and he only). That he and the examinant cohabited together going on three years, lastly in the house of one Richard Angier in or near Turk's Row in Chelsea aforesaid. By whom, the said Thomas Rayner, she now is great with child or children, she now goeth with and is pregnant of. And that he, the said Thomas Rayner, is the true and only father thereof, and no man else. [Blank]. Sworn the day and year above written. [The above statement is crossed out in the original.]

396. [p. 173, a numbering error in the original manuscript] Middlesex, to wit. The examination of Hannah Bradly, lodging in the parish of Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, taken on oath, 8 Nov. 1760. This examinant upon her oath says that she is 28 years of age, that she was born in the parish of St Margaret Westminster in the county of Middlesex. That she was apprenticed to one Sarah Dyer in the said parish of St Margaret, purse maker. Since which time she lived as a hired servant (at the yearly wages of £5 10s. per annum) with Dr John Wilmer in Millman's Row in the parish of Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, with whom she lived three years and nine months. That she never was married, that she never kept a house, or tenement of £10 by the year, nor paid any parish taxes, nor hath lived in any one place for twelve [months] together since. This examinant upon her voluntary oath says that she is now great with child or children which are likely to be born a bastard or bastards, and are likely to become chargeable to the said parish of Chelsea. And that Thomas Leigh, an attorney's clerk or writer in the Roll's Office in Chancery Lane in the Precinct of the Rolls in or near the city of London had carnal knowledge of her body in the house of Mrs Ballester in Warwick Street near Golden Square in the parish of St James Westminster (with whom she was a servant, and there lived only five months). He, the said Thomas Leigh, being at the said time a lodger in the said house, and he having several times carnal knowledge of her body from the month of Feb. 1760 to May following, in the said Mrs Ballester['s] house, at which or one of which times, the said Thomas Leigh did beget her with [the] child or children she now goeth with and is pregnant of. And that he, the said Thomas Leigh, is the true and only father thereof and no one else. And further says she has applied herself to the said Thomas Leigh for aid and assistance for her lying-in, she not having wherewithal to maintain her self and the child. He answered, if one single half penny would save her and the child that he would not give it her, and pushed her out of his office. Hannah Bradley. Sworn before me, Samuel Bever.

397. [p. 174] Middlesex, to wit. The examination of Isaac Richards. This examinant, aged upwards of 48 years of age, upon his oath says that he was born in the parish of Frome in Somersetshire. That his father put him out and bound him apprentice to one Arthur Spencer, a shoemaker in the parish of Bruton in the aforesaid county of Somerset. That he left his said apprenticeship when he was about 17 years of age and came up to London and worked in and about London as a journeyman some years. Afterwards he hired himself into the service of the Right Honourable the Earl of Wilmington as a helper or under groom. In which service he lived upwards of sixteen months at the rate of £4 per annum, meat, drink, lodging. That he was discharged in the parish of Bone and had his wages paid him at his lordship's house in the said parish of Bone in the county of Sussex. That he was in the said service in the said parish of Bone between two and three months when he was discharged from thence. And that he married his late wife Margaret about 25 years since, by whom he had sixteen children, four whereof are now living; vizt, William, about 14 years of age, Mary, about 13, Moses, about 7, and James, about 3. That never since he left the above said service (and discharged at Bone), which was before he was married, has not lived as a hired servant. That he never rented any house or land of £10 per annum, nor paid any parochial taxes, nor did any act to gain a settlement since, to the best of his knowledge. [Blank]. Sworn before me, [blank] Jan. 1761, [blank]. N.B. That this examinant was with the family some part of the sixteen months at St James Square, and some time in the parish of Chiswick. N.B. The last 40 days before he was discharged was at Bone.

398. [p. 175] Middlesex, to wit. Elizabeth Smith, aged 33 years, lodging in the parish of St Luke at Chelsea, upon her oath saith that she is the widow of William Smith who died five weeks ago. To whom she was married at the Fleet fifteen years ago. That her said husband was a basket maker by trade. That he was bound an apprentice by an indenture for seven years to Mr Jackson, a basket maker at Southley in the parish of Datchet in the county of Bucks. And there served all his time out, which expired 40 years ago. That he never kept house, rented a tenement of £10 by the year, paid any taxes, nor was a yearly hired servant in any one place for twelve months together, to this examinant's knowledge. That she hath one child living by her said husband; to wit, John, aged four years and upwards, now with this examinant. The mark of Elizabeth Smith. Sworn, 18 Feb. 1761, before Benjamin Cox, Henry Fielding. Passed to Datchet, 19 Feb. 1761.

399. [p. 176] Middlesex, to wit. Ann Carrack, single woman, aged near 69 years, lodging in the parish of Chelsea, maketh oath that about 39 years ago she with one Mrs Mary Erick took a house in Christ Church parish in or near the city of London. And there followed the business of milliners, in joint partnership with the said Mary Erick. And there paid £30 per annum and all parochial taxes for the said premises. From thence they both removed and lived in a house in Bull Head Court of £16 per annum in the said parish of Christ Church, and there lived about four years and paid there likewise all parochial taxes for the said house, share and share alike. Business not answering there, they then dissolved their partnership and lived separate for several years. She, this examinant, since that time has got her livelihood by work at her needle (not as a hired servant) till about 20 years since. She then growing lame and infirm applied her self to her old friend Mrs Mary Erick, who took a house and followed business at Chelsea, who is now also reduced. With whom she has lived ever since as a friend and relation, not as a hired servant. And this examinant further says that she never was married, rented any house, or paid parochial taxes, or has lived as a hired servant since she left Bull Head Court (as above mentioned). Nor has done any act, to the best of her knowledge, to gain a settlement elsewhere. And is now become burdensome to the parish of Chelsea. Ann Carrack, her mark. Sworn, 25 Mar. 1761, before me, Benjamin Cox . . . Passed to Christ Church, London, 25 Mar. 1761.

400. [p. 177] Middlesex. The voluntary examination of Ann Crockford, single woman, taken before me, . . . 22 June 1761. Who on her oath says that on Tuesday, 26 May last she, this examinant, was delivered of a male bastard child in the workhouse belonging to the parish of Chelsea in the county of Middlesex (which said child is baptised and named John). Was unlawfully begotten on her body by John Spooner, who keeps a public house known by the sign of the Swan and Scotch-Grey in Jews Row in the said parish of Chelsea, with whom she lived as a hired servant in the said house. And in the bed where she lay in his said house, [he] had carnal knowledge of her body several times. And this examinant further says that the said John Spooner is the true father of the said child, and no other person. Ann Crockford, her mark. Sworn the day and year above written, before Henry Fielding. [See 439].

401. [p. 178] Middlesex. Elizabeth Hall, the wife of Abel Hall, aged near 39 years, upon her oath says that on 27 July 1746 she, this examinant (as also appears by a certificate), was married to her said husband in the parish of St Sepulchre in the liberty of the Fleet, London. Says that her said husband was born at Highgate in the parish of Hornsey in the county of Middlesex. And there lived and worked with his father, Nathaniel Hall, a mason who was a man of credit, with whom he lived to the time of his death. Then he was about 20 years of age. And about twelve months after, was married to her (as aforementioned). She does not know whether he was apprenticed by indentures to his said father or no. By whom she has had eight children, and only one child now living, whose name is Nathaniel, aged near 20 months, which the father has taken away with him. That he never lived as a yearly hired servant, rented a house of £10 per annum, or paid parochial taxes since his said father's death. And this examinant further says that her said husband, Abel Hall, has absconded and left her. That she is not able at this present to provide for her self without relief, and is now likely to come chargeable to the parish of Chelsea. The mark of Elizabeth Hall. Sworn, 6 July 1761, before us, Samuel Bever, Benjamin Cox. Passed to Hornsey, 8 July 1761.

402. [p. 179] Middlesex, to wit. Charles Whitesides, aged about 52 years, upon oath says he was born in the parish of St James Clerkenwell in the county of Middlesex. That when he was about 13 years of age, he was put out and bound apprentice for seven years to one Thomas Docket, a shoemaker who lived in Cursitor Street in the parish of St Dunstan in the West in the Precincts of the Rolls in or near the city of London. With whom he lived and had his meat, drink, washing and lodging as an apprentice for about six years and no longer. For when he was about 19 years of age he enlisted for a soldier and is at this time a sergeant in Colonel Tonyn's regiment of foot. And that he was married to Ann, his present wife (who now lodges in the parish of Chelsea), as appears by certificate, on 11 July 1753 in the Fleet. By whom he has now four children living; vizt, Ephraim, about 6 years, Thomas, near 5 years of age, Daniel, about 3 years of age, Hester, about 10 months. And that his said wife is pregnant at this time by him. And this examinant on his oath further says that he never since he left his said apprenticeship lived with any person as a hired yearly servant, nor rented a house of £10 per annum, nor has done any thing, to the best of his knowledge, to gain a subsequent settlement. [See 413].

403. [p. 180] Middlesex, to wit. Mary Jones, spinster, 48 years of age and upwards, was born in the town of St Davids in Pembrokeshire in Wales. Upon oath says that she was a hired yearly servant to Dr Smollet in the parish of Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, of whom she received £5 per annum, meat, drink, washing and lodging. In whose service she lived upwards of fourteen months, all under one living. And has not since she left the above said service (which is about six years since) lived in any service twelve months together, or ever rented a house of £10 per annum, or hath done any thing (to the best of her knowledge) to gain any other settlement since. Mary Jones. Sworn, [blank] Oct. 1761, before me, Benjamin Cox.

404. [p. 181] Middlesex. The examination of John Adams. This examinant on his oath says that he is about 45 years of age, by profession a labourer, was born in the parish of Shepshed in Leicestershire. [He] got his livelihood by labouring work or jobbing about till about seven years ago, and then he hired himself as a yearly servant to one Mr James Brady in the parish of Mile End Old Town in the county of Middlesex. With whom he lived two years and received £8, victuals, drink, washing and lodging. And this examinant further says that since he left the above service, [he] never lived as a hired servant in one place a twelve months, or rented a tenement or land of £10 per annum, nor done any act since to gain a settlement. And now is a vagrant, and become burdensome to [the] parish of Chelsea. [Blank.] Sworn before, [blank]. [See 405, 406].

405. [p. 182] Middlesex, to wit. The information of John Gardner, an inhabitant of the parish of St Luke Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, taken on oath, 13 Nov. 1761. This informant on his oath saith that he did the eleventh instant apprehend John Adams, a rogue and vagabond, in the parish aforesaid, lodging in the open air contrary to the statute in that case made and provided. The mark of John Gardner. Sworn the day and year above said, before Benjamin Cox. [See 404, 406].

406. The examination of John Adams, a rogue and vagabond apprehended by John Gardner, an inhabitant of the parish of St Luke at Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, and brought before me, . . . and taken before me, 13 Nov. 1761. This examinant on his oath saith that he is 40 years of age and upwards, that he never was married, that he was a yearly hired servant to Mr James Brady in the hamlet of Mile End Old Town in the parish of Stepney in the county of Middlesex for the space of two years, at the yearly wages of £7, diet and lodging. That he hath not done any act to gain a subsequent settlement. The mark of John Adams. Sworn the day and year above said, before Benjamin Cox. Passed to Stepney. [See 404, 405].

407. [p. 183] Middlesex. John Edenbury, aged about 55 years, born in Plaistow in the county of Essex, upon his oath says that he was bound out an apprentice to Mr Thomas Harris, a gardener in Plaistow in the parish of West Ham in the county of Essex. After he served out his said apprenticeship, the last place he lived in as a yearly hired servant before he was married was with the Right Honourable Earl Cowper, at his lordship's house at Cole Green in the parish of Hertingfordbury in the county of Hertford, four years and a half or thereabouts as his principal gardener at the rate of £17 per annum, lodging and diet all the said time. Soon after he left the said service, he married his present wife, Ann, by whom he has six children living. And further this examinant says upon his oath that since his said marriage he never rented any house, garden, or tenement of £10 per annum, or paid parochial taxes or ever did any act since to have gained a subsequent settlement, to the best of his knowledge. Sworn, 9 Jan. 1762, before me, Samuel Bever.

Hannah, about 19 years, in service, Mary, about 17 years, in service, Sarah, about 15 years, in service, John, about 13 years, apprentice to Thomas Blanch in St Margaret, Westminster, William, about 10 years, Francis, about 7 years. Both the two last at home with him. [See 408].

408. [p. 184] Middlesex. Examination of John Edenbury taken 9 Jan. 1762. Who on oath says that he is about 55 years of age, born. [Crossed out in the original manuscript.] [See 407].

409. [p. 185] Middlesex. Ann Holland, wife of William Holland, aged about 58 years of age, formerly the wife of Thomas Davies the elder. On her oath says that she was married about 40 years ago to one Thomas Davies the elder, since deceased, who often told her that he served his apprenticeship in the parish of St Gregory by St Paul's in the city of London. Which parish of St Gregory's had given to the parish of St Luke Chelsea in the county of Middlesex a certificate acknowledging and confirming the same. And further this examinant says that her said husband, Thomas Davies, with her and six children were passed by the officers of the aforesaid parish of Chelsea to the said parish of St Gregory's upwards of 20 years since (about the time of the hard frost). And at this time she had living six children by the said Thomas Davies; vizt, 1st Amelia, the wife of James Powell, 2nd Mary, the wife of Samuel Suckley, 3rd Ann, unmarried, 4th Thomas, the younger, who is gone for a soldier [and] whose wife is lately dead. By her the said Thomas has two children now living; vizt, Ann, about 7 years of age, and Thomas, about 5 years of age. Which said two children he has left in the parish of Chelsea, and is now become burdensome and chargeable to the said parish. 5th Eleanor, unmarried, 6th and youngest at this time, an apprentice (whose name is John) to a waterman at Hungerford in the parish of St Martin in the Fields, Westminster. And lastly this examinant on her oath further says that her said husband, Thomas Davies, nor her said son, Thomas Davies, to her knowledge, never rented any [p. 186] house or tenement of £10 per annum, or paid any parochial taxes, or served any parish office whatever, nor has gained any settlement than as aforesaid, other than what appears by the certificate mentioned. The mark of Ann Holland. Sworn before us, 18 Jan. 1762, Samuel Bever. Benjamin Cox. Passed the two children, 19 Jan., to St Gregory's. [See 410].

410. Middlesex. Mary Suckley, inhabitant of the parish of Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, aged about 32 years of age, on her oath says that she was married to one Samuel Suckley about fourteen years since in the liberty of the Fleet in the parish of St Brides (alias St Bridget), London. And that her said husband before he was married was a hired [a] yearly servant to one Mr Bond, a gardener in the parish of Chelsea aforesaid. With whom he lived upwards of two years at the rate of £5 per annum, meat, drink, washing and lodging. And that he never since he left the above said service was a hired servant by the year, or rented any tenement of £10 per annum, nor paid any parochial taxes, nor since, to her knowledge, has gain any subsequent settlement. The mark of Mary Suckley. Sworn, 18 Jan. 1762, Samuel Bever. [See 409].

411. [p. 187] Middlesex. Eleanor Healy, single woman, aged about 45 years, upon her oath says her father, Thomas Healy, served his apprenticeship of seven years with one Mr Norton, a vintner in the parish of St James, Westminster, who afterwards kept a public house in the said parish. She further says that she was born in the said parish and that she never lived in any other parish as a hired yearly servant. And that her last place of service was with one Mrs Mary Davis, a laundress in Great Windmill Street in the aforesaid parish of St James in the liberty of Westminster in the county of Middlesex, with whom she lived seven years and upwards, and had great part of the said time £5 a year, diet and lodging. And that she says that she was passed by an order about two years ago from St George's to St James parish. That she never was married, nor done any act (to the best of her knowledge) to have gained a subsequent settlement. And that she has been chargeable to Chelsea. Eleanor Healy, her mark. Sworn before us, 23 Jan. 1762, Benjamin Cox, Thomas Kynaston. Passed to St James.

412. [p. 188] Middlesex. Catherine Wheeler, single woman, aged 23 years, upon her oath says that she was born near St Margaret's church in the city and liberty of Westminster. And that both her father and mother were poor labouring people. And that the parish officers of St Margaret aforesaid put her out and bound her an apprentice to one Joseph Baker, at Walham Green in the parish of Fulham in the county of Middlesex, gardener, till she was 21 years of age. But her said master and her mistress became so poor that they had all their goods and effects seized on by their landlord, at which time she had her indenture of apprenticeship returned to her after living with them upwards of five years. With whom she had apparel, diet and lodging, and then was about 18 years of age. Since which time she never lived in any place twelve months as a yearly servant, nor never was married to any man, nor done any act whatever since her said apprenticeship (to the best of her knowledge) to gain any subsequent settlement. And that she is become chargeable to the parish of Chelsea. Catherine Wheeler, her mark. Witness Robert Higden. Sworn before us, 5 Feb. 1762, William Spinnage, Benjamin Cox. Passed to Fulham, 15 Feb. 1762.

413. [p. 188, a numbering error in the original manuscript] Middlesex, to wit. Ann Whitesides, aged about 34 years, lodging in the parish of St Luke Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, upon her oath says that she is the wife of Charles Whitesides, and that she was married to him in the liberty of the Fleet in the city of London on 11 July 1753 (as appears by a certificate). And that her said husband has often told her that he was bound out as an apprentice at the age of 13 years to one Mr Thomas Duckett, a shoemaker in or near Cursitor's Street in the Precinct or liberty of the Rolls (in the county of Middlesex in the parish of St Dunstan in the West) with whom he lived until he was 19 years of age. And then he left his said master and entered himself into the army and ever since has belonged to it. By whom she now has living five children; vizt, 1st Ephraim, 6 years of age and upwards, 2nd Thomas, 5 years of age and upwards, 3rd Daniel, about 3 years of age, 4th Hester, about 15 months old, 5th Nicholas, about 6 weeks old. And that her said husband has left her and her said children without any support or sustenance. And this examinant further on her oath says that she never heard or ever knew that he, since he left his said master with whom he was an apprentice, ever lived as a hired servant, or ever rented a tenement of £10 per annum to gain a subsequent settlement, to the best of her knowledge. And that they are all become chargeable to the above said parish of Chelsea. Ann Whitesides, her mark. Sworn before us, 2 Apr. 1762, Benjamin Cox, Thomas Kynaston. Passed her and her five children to the Rolls, 2 Apr. 1762. [See 402].

414. [p. 189] Middlesex, to wit. The examination of Jean Mcquestin relating to the settlement of Catherine Robinson her niece, at this time a lunatic. Jean Mcquestin, living in the parish of Chelsea in the county of Middlesex, single woman, aged about 36 years, on her oath says that she was born in the said parish of Chelsea, as was also her only sister Elizabeth (who now is dead). And as soon as they both were capable of getting their maintenance they went out to service. And the last place her said sister Elizabeth lived in as a yearly hired servant was with Mr Thomas Street, a hosier near Somerset House in the parish of St Mary le Strand within the Duchy of Lancaster in the county of Middlesex. With whom she lived upwards of a year and received wages, meat, drink and lodging. And about six weeks after she left her said service, she was married to one Thomas Robinson, by trade a leather breeches maker. [He was] born and also served his time of apprenticeship (as she often heard him say) was in Scotland, which she verily believes to be true, but at what place in Scotland, she knows not. And this examinant further says that after her said sister was married her husband took the lesser part of a shop to follow business in, and also a second pair of stairs room in the said house in Russel Court in the parish of St Martin in the Fields in the county of Middlesex, for which together [he] paid £12 per annum, but no taxes whatever, for as the other (greater) part of the shop and also all the other parts of the house was occupied by the landlord himself. He and he only paid all taxes whatever. And that her said sister lived with her said husband about ten years and then died, leaving behind her one child whose name is Catherine Robinson, now aged about 18 years, who was born in Russel Court, and at this time [is] not capable to get her maintenance, being a lunatic. Soon after her sister's death he returned to Scotland and sent for his daughter Catherine to be taken care of, and there lived near six years. He, the said Thomas Robinson, her father, went into his Majesty's service and left her. She then come up to London a few months since. And to the best of her knowledge and belief this examinant says her said niece, Catherine Robinson, never lived a year as a yearly hired servant in one place, never was an apprentice, or ever was married, or ever gained her self any [p. 190] settlement in any place. And that the said poor girl, her niece, is become chargeable to the parish of Chelsea. And lastly this examinant on her oath further says that the said Thomas Robinson, father of the said Catherine, during the whole time of his living in England, ever rented a distinct tenement of £10 per annum, or ever paid parochial taxes, or ever gain[ed] a subsequent settlement since he first left Scotland, to the best of her knowledge and belief. Jean Mcquestin. Sworn before us, 7 June 1762, George Wright, Saunders Welch. Passed by an order to St Martin in the Fields, 7 June 1762.