Filling the gaps

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Genealogy, Gloucester, Gwinnett, Inns, Licences

Placing your ancestors on the family tree, using births, baptisms, marriages, deaths and burials, along with the census records, is fairly straightforward.  Filling in the gaps between these vital events is not only more difficult, as little is online, but it is also much more interesting.

I did not have space in my books Discover Gloucestershire Ancestors, Volumes 1 & 2 to write about alehouse licences in any detail and it was only yesterday that I checked some of them out at Gloucestershire Archives. (Ref: GBR/GV/AV/1 – 5).  These records cover the period from 1674 to 1836 with a few gaps.

The records include the date of the application (made annually in September), the name of the person applying for the licence, the sign (name of the pub), the names of two people acting as sureties and the surety or fee that they put up on the publican’s behalf.  If the publican broke the rules of his licence, the surety would be lost.

I had known that my Gwinnett ancestors were frequently recorded as being victuallers but had no idea where they had carried out their trade.  Imagine my surprise to discover that Samuel Gwinnett, later his wife Ann and later still his brother Charles had all applied for a licence to run the prestigious 15th century New Inn!

The earliest inn known to be run by a Gwinnett was the Bolt Inn in Eastgate Street.  George Gwinnett, who died in 1739, left his inn to his sons, William and George.  William was recorded as being one of the sureties for Joseph Grazebrook in 1749 so presumably the Gwinnetts had given up the licence during the years from 1740 to 1749.  Earlier records are still to be checked.

Other inns run by the Gwinnett family in Gloucester included The Red Lyon, the Greyhound, the Golden Cock and the City Arms.

 

Early schools in Gloucester

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Gloucester, Gwinnett, Schools

In Discover Gloucestershire Ancestors Volume 2, I included a chapter on education records and mentioned some of the early Gloucester schools such as the Crypt School, Sir Thomas Rich’s School and the College School, all of which are still in existence, the latter now called the King’s School.

Recently, however, I was googling the name of Theodore Gwinnett and I came across a mention of him in connection with the Minutes of the Committee of Privileges of 1799. Further investigation showed this particular document to relate to one William Cole (or Tudor as he was calling himself), attempting to make a claim on the Berkeley estate. It seems that three of the Gwinnett boys, Theodore, Charles and John had all known the young William Cole or his relatives in their schooldays or early manhood. One other family that mentioned was the Hudds of The Fleece in Wotton.

Apart from the information I gleaned on the early years of the Gwinnett boys, it was interesting to note how they walked from Barnwood to Wotton to collect William Cole and continue with him into the city to school most days. Theodore said he attended Mr Cook’s school in Oxbody Lane in Gloucester, whilst William Cole, who lived with his family at The Swan at Wotton, went to a different school. However, another friend, Edward Hudd, said both he and William Cole attended Mr John Cooke’s school, again said to be in Oxbody Lane, but that Theodore Gwinnett had gone to a different school, that belonging to a Mr Mutlow, which he believed was ‘down behind the College Wall’. Someone has to have been wrong! William Cole’s sisters went to a school in Lower Northgate Street ‘kept by a person by the name of Middleton’ and later to Mrs Clarke’s.

Does anyone have any more details on any of these schools? Or any other small Gloucester schools of the same period?

Settlement Certificates

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Gloucestershire, Gwinnett, Parish Chest, Poor Law

For many years I tried to find a link between my Worcestershire Gwinnetts and the Gloucestershire family without success.  Then, thanks to an index to Gloucestershire Overseers of the Poor documents, I located a settlement certificate from the overseers of Painswick to their colleagues in Bewdley, stating that they did ‘own and acknowledge’ Richard Gwinnett of Painswick and his wife Ann and their issue.  This meant that, should Richard fail to support himself and his family once he settled in Bewdley, Painswick parish would pay any costs incurred in supporting him and removing him to his home county.  Read more about settlements and removals in my latest book.

Gloucestershire Apprentices

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Apprentices, Freemen, Genealogy, Gwinnett

One way to trace the parents of your ancestor is by looking at records concerning their apprenticeships.  There are two useful books for Gloucestershire Apprentices, both produced in the Gloucestershire Record Series by the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society.

They are: ‘A Calendar of the Registers of Apprentices of the City of Gloucester 1595-1700′ edited by Jill Barlow, M.A. and ”A Calendar of the Registers of the Freemen of the City of Gloucester 1641-1838′ transcribed by Peter Ripley and revised and edited by John Jurica.

The first book deals with the apprenticeship registers and has entries such as:

1690 Nov 1 Gwinnett Francis, son of Lawrence, gentleman of Great Shurdington, to Newman, Samuel 7years baker

1680 Apr 12 Gwinnet, Richard, son of George, gentleman of Badgeworth, to Randle, Josiah & Margery, 7yrs baker 2s 6d.

the second line giving the name of the apprentice’s master, the length of time of his apprenticeship, the trade and sometimes the amount paid to the master.  At the end of the apprenticeship, the apprentice was entitled to become a freeman of the city.

The second book, listing the Freemen, has entries such as:

1757 Oct 24 Button Gwinnett, son of Sam., clerk
1806 Apr 14 Sam. Gwinnett, writer, son of Chas., victualler

(There is a note that Button was a signatory on the American Declaration of Independence of  1776.)

A man could become a freeman in four ways, by apprenticeship, by patrimony, by purchase or by gift of the city corporation.  Although the books, available via Amazon.co.uk, specify the city of Gloucester there are entries for people from the whole county of Gloucestershire as well as a few from elsewhere.

House History

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Genealogy, Gwinnett
I attended a wonderful workshop session yesterday, run by Averil Kear for the Friends of Gloucestershire Archives on tracing the history of a house.We had a presentation showing us the sort of things we should be looking for and then we spent an hour looking at individual documents that had come from the archives. Averil had chosen a large house in the centre of Gloucester, sadly no longer in existence, but one which we could follow back a couple of centuries. There were maps, street and trade directories, electoral registers, deeds, wills and inventories, books of leases, solicitor’s letters, census records and a large collection of maps of the centre of Gloucester over the years. We were recommended certain books, including Nick Barratt’s ‘Tracing the History of your House’ which has a companion Starter Pack to help you with your research.

The session was concluded with Averil going through the items that we had been looking at,putting everything into chronological order to produce the complete history. Although I had done some house history work before, I learnt a great deal – and, as a bonus, found a few more Gwinnetts as well!

Tracing the History of Your House: The Building, the People, the Past

Gloucestershire Hearth Tax

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Genealogy, Gwinnett
Yesterday, I had a look at the Hearth Tax returns for Gloucestershire. They cover the period from 1671/2 and include a list of names of those people with houses worth more than 20 shillings a year and who also paid church or poor rates. So they are lists of the wealthier people in the county at the time.

The records in Gloucestershire Archives are negative photocopies of the originals which are held in the National Archives at Kew and not all of them are easy to read. I looked at the Badgeworth and Shurdington areas of the county. There I found all four of the Gwinnett men who were around at the time, Richard, George, Isaac and Lawrence, the four sons of George Gwinnett and his wife, Elizabeth nee Lawrence.

The number of hearths was given for each, the more hearths being an indicator of the wealth of the person. Richard had five, Lawrence four and George and Isaac three each. This put three of them in the merchant/yeomen bracket with Richard just into the gentry group. Richard and George were living in Little Shurdington and their two brothers in Great Shurdington. The wealthiest person in the neighbourhood, using this measure, was William Lawrence, with 9 hearths, who lived at the Greenway, now a hotel.

Houses and the Hearth Tax

Catholic Ancestors

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Genealogy, Gwinnett
I had an interesting time at Worcestershire Archives yesterday. Amongst other things, I was looking at the Roman Catholic registers for Dudley, seeking an Irish family, and there, to my surprise, I found a baptism for an Ann Gwinnett in 1836. The Gwinnetts have been almost totally members of the Church of England since they arrived in Gloucestershire in the late 16th century; only two other instances of nonconformity have been found, one a Methodist and, most intriguing, a Lawrence Gwinnett who was found on a list of Papists in the early 18th century. I wonder if this new Gwinnett child is linked to Lawrence? Because of the difficulty of finding any Catholic registers for the county for that period, this Lawrence branch has vanished into thin air. Did he remain in Gloucestershire? Were his estates confiscated? I wish I knew! Tracing Catholic Ancestors
Tracing Catholic Ancestors
National Index Parish Registers

How to document Gwinnett research?

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Genealogy, Gwinnett

Well, I have another session at the Archives tonight on my Gwinnett research. I am considering some sort of publication, either a book or a web site, that involves the history of the Gwinnett family, combined with researching your ancestors in and around Gloucestershire – basically a how-to-do-it book. The latest version of ‘Gloucestershire Family History’ written by M E Richards and produced by the then Gloucestershire Record Office is 15 years old now and a lot has happened in genealogy since then. It has been mentioned a few times that it needs updating ….. So, my problem is threefold: do I write the family story from when the Gwinnetts arrived in Gloucestershire in the 16th century using documents to illustrate what can be found – the most logical way from the family point of view; do I begin with the most recent Gwinnett and work back though his family as one does when tracing ancestors; or do I take topics for research such as parish registers, probate, etc., and describe the family via that means? Any suggestions from those who have been along this route already? It’s all a bit overwhelming at the moment.

Gwinnett research – first session

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Genealogy, Gwinnett

Well, my first session at the archives went well but I didn’t exactly get far. I had ordered two bundles of documents and concentrated first of all on the family bundle. This held about 20 documents and included copies of wills, (not all apparently related to the Gwinnett family but possibly to do with land they were interested in), leases and, the one I began with, a marriage settlement dated 1646. This related to the marriage of Richard Gwinnett to Anne Caple, the daughter of William Caple who was an Alderman in the city of Gloucester. Others mentioned were Richard’s parents, George and Elizabeth Gwinnett, and Anthony Freeman of Badgeworth, who was Richard’s brother-in-law. The amazing thing was that William Caple was paying George Gwinnett £600 to marry his daughter to Richard, of which only £100 would go to Richard and Anne. That was a lot of money in those days!! (Anyone tell me how much it would be worth today?) After nearly two hours of transcribing the document, I am still only a quarter of the way through it.

My Gwinnett research

Posted by Liz Jack     Category: Genealogy, Gwinnett

As part of my New Year’s resolution to spend more time on my own research, I am starting a session at the Gloucestershire Archives this evening when I can concentrate on my ancestors, the Gwinnetts. They appeared in the Badgeworth area of the county in the second half of the sixteenth century. The earliest reference I have found for them so far is 1575. The document is actually in the manorial records and the entry is dated 1579 but it mentions that George Gwinnett had been there for four years. Does anyone have an earlier date for them?