THE PROVINCIAL HISTORY OF ENGLAND. Xe.—CENTRAL ENGLAND: STAFFORDSHIRE AND DERBYSHIRE: —THE LAND.
TN the distribution of lands among the followers of William the
Conqueror, as it remained at the time of the formation of Domesday Survey, the following were the chief landowners in Staffordshire (Statfordscire):—Roger de Montgomery, Earl of Arundel and Shrewsbury, whom we have had so frequently to mention, held 30 manors ; and Hugh de Montgomery, one. Henry de Ferieres (ancestor of the Ferrers or Ferrara family) held seven manors, besides Tutbury Castle and borough. He founded a priory at Tutbury (probably in the reign of William Rufus), and was one of the Commissioners for the formation of the Survey. The greatest landowner was Robert de Statford, who had 81 manors. It appears from a charter of his great grandson, that the family name of this Robert was Be Toenei, and Dugdale conjectures him to have been a younger son of Roger de Toeui, standard-bearer of Normandy. He probably took his name of Statford from the Castle of Statford or Stafford, of which (before it was demolished) he was governor. He lived till Henry I.'s time, and founded a priory at Stone in Staffordshire for Augustine monks as an expiation seemingly for the murder by Enysau de Walton of two nuns and a priest, who were settled in a small oratory in that place. He also gave two of his lordships to the monks of Evesham, and was himself interred with his wife, Avice de Clare, at the entrance of the cloister at Stone. He is believed to be the ancestor of the great family of Stafford, Dukes of Buckingham, whose melancholy downfall into the lower ranks of society in the time of the Tudors is well known. William Fitz-Ansculf, who held twenty-five manors in this county, was the son of Anaculf de Piuchengi, Sheriff of Surrey. William Fitz-Ansculf had his principal seat and castle at Dudelei (Dudley), which had before belonged to Earl Edwin. William had four mansurte in the borough of Stafford (Stafford). One of the other principal lay landowners was Richard the Forester. According to Dugdale, he is the same person as the Richard Chineu and Richard the Huntsman (Venator). He held his lands by the service of keeping the forest of Kanoc (Cannock) in Staffordshire, and paying to the King ten marks yearly. Besides him we have Rainald de Bailgiole (whom some suppose to have been nearly allied to Guy de Bailliol, who was enfeoffed by William Rufus of the barony of Bywell, in Northumberland, and from whom descended the claimants to the throne of
Scotland). Ralph Fitz-Hubert (who, according to the Messrs. Lysoug, was ancestor of the Frechvilles, landowners in Derbyshire down to the reign of Charles II.) ; and Nigel, elsewhere called Nigel de Statford. Besides these great Norman landowners, we have a list of lands held by the King's Thanes, the relics of the old Saxon and Danish aristocracy. These include the names of Alric (holding lands in Bigeford); Aluric (or Alvric), Almar, Dunning, Laving, Ulwin, Game!, Sperri, Richard (who held Anne), Alric (who held Stagrigesholle), Alwold (who held Crochesdene), Otha (holding Cedla), Levild (holding Scestestan), Chenvin, and Alward (who held Fen tone). The principal ecclesiastical landowners were the Bishop of Chester, the Abbots of Westminster and Burton, the church of Rheims, and the Canons of Stafford and Handone or Han tone (Wolverhampton).
The Messrs. Lysons supply us with the following summary of the distribution of true landed property in Derbyshire under Domesday Survey :—" The King held twenty-one manors in demesne, and one other was held under the Crown ; the Bishop of Chester had two ; the Abbot and Convent of Buxton six ; Roger de Poictou four." He was the third son of Earl Roger de Montgomery, and had extensive possessions also "between the Ribble and the Mersey" in Lancashire, and in Nottinghamshire, which, together with those in Derbyshire, appear to have been in the King's hands at the time of the Survey ; while his lands in Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Essex, and Suffolk seem to have been in his actual possession. He is said to have received his surname from having married a Poictevin woman. "Henry de Ferieres held forty-nine manors in demesne, and forty-one were held under him." He was ancestor of the Earls of Derby of that family. " William Peverell held six in demesne, six others were held under under him ; Walter Deincourt held six in demesne,"—Ainturt he is called in the Survey. Edward Deincourt, the last of the elder branch of this family, died early in the reign of Edward III. "Geoffrey Alselin had four in demesne, and two were held under him." His estates after two generations went by a daughter to the Bardolphs. His lands had all belonged to a Saxon called Tochi. "Ralph Fitz-Hubert had eleven manors in demesne, and eight others were held under him ; Ralph de Barna held four in demesne, a fifth was held under him ; Ascuit Musard held five in demesne." He is also called Hascoit, Hascoith, and Haxolf, and his principal seat was at Musarden, in Gloucestershire. "Two manors were held under Gilbert de Gond, the Conqueror's nephew ; Nigel de Statford held nine manors in demesne." Dugdale supposes him to have been a brother of Robert de Statford. The Gresley family claim to be descended from him. "Robert Fitz-William held one, Roger de Bashi held four in demesne, and four others were held under him." His principal seat was at Tickhill Castle, in Yorkshire, in which county and Nottinghamshire he had his largest possessions. His barony terminated with his grandson, John, who left one daughter. "The King's Thanes held twenty-two manors immediately of the Crown." These last include the names of Levric, Godric, Edric, Turgille, Dofin, Toll, Lewin, Raven, Hada, Sberne, Hacon, Dolfiu, Dunning, Ernvi, Anti, Algar, and Osmund.
Among the families who took a leading position in Staffordshire during the Plantagenet period we may mention Noel of Houton and Ellenhall (Henry II. and Richard I.) ; Creasewell of Creasewell, Fitz-Waleran and De Novant (Richard I.) ; Be Erdington (John) ; De Adithlea (Audley), De Kinton, Bonet, De Leis (i.e., Leigh), De Bromley, De Haga (i.e., Haig), Extraneus (i.e., Estranger), De Acton, Corbet of Barlaston, Grendon of Shenston and Grendon, Be Acovere of Okeover, Bagod of Bromley Bagot, Be Caverswel, and De Aldahel (Henry III.) ; De Mortimer, De Knovil, Springbuse, Ramescley, Tittley or Tutley, Corbet of King'sBromley, De Harlegh, Be Beysin, and Be Dene (Edward I.); Trumwin, De Cheyne, De Swinnerton, and Be Bishbury (Edward II.) ; Be Hinkele, Pesthole of Peschale and Horsley, De Ruggeley of Rugeley and Shenston, Be Aston, De Perton, De Lutteley, De Gresley, De Stafford, De Verdon, Bosley, and De Hopton (Edward HI.) ; Cornwall, Calleson, De Wirley of Hamstead Hall, Walsall, Be Mavesyn, De Lichfield, Chetwynd, and Delves (Richard II.). In the Lancaster and York period we have Shareshall of Shareshall, Newport of Weston-under-Lyzard, Fraunces, Gifford, Basset, Babthorpe, Trussel of Cublesdon and Acton, Erdeswick of Sandon, Montgomery, Egerton of Wrinehill, Stanley of Elford, Strelly, Lowe of Tymmor, Archer of Statfold, Mitton, Blount, Griffith, Ferrara of Tamworth Castle, Astley of Patshull, Bagot of Blithfield, Cotton of Harastal Ridware, Cotes of Cotes, Wrottesley of Wrottesley Hall, Harcourt, Beaumont of Wednesbury, Wolley of Wolsley Bridge, and Constable. The Tudor period supplies us, among others, with the following new names :
Willoughby, Harper, Draycot, Nevil, Grey of Enfield, Smith of Elford, Littleton of Pillaton, Vernon; Dudley, FitzHerbert of Swinnerton, Meverel, Fleetwood of Calvick priory, Snead of Bridewell, Wells of Horecross, Bagnal of Newcastle, Leveson, Schrimshire, Trentham of Roncester Abbey, Horewood or Whorewood, Adderley of Blakehaugh, Leigh of Rushell, Bowes of Elford, Stanford of Rowley and Perryhall, Crompton of Stone Park, and Skevington of Fisherwick. It may be mentioned that the extent to which the names of the same families occur in the front rank again and again during successive centuries in this county is very remarkable. This appears to be more the case in Staffordshire than in any county we have yet had occasion to speak of.
During the Stuart period and before the accession of the House of Brunswick, the following additional names appear—Wakering, Brabazon, Heveningham, Weston of Rugeley, Winsor, Comberford of Comberford, Parker of Parkhall, Bowyer of Knipersley, Broughton, Pyot of Streethey, Moseley, AIanwaring of Whitmore, Kinnersley of Loxley, Seabright, Offiey of Madeley, Jolliffe of Coverswall Castle, Duey of Shenstone, Wilbraham, Cope of Houton Abbey, (Lord) Ward of Himley, Shilton of Wednesbury, Whitehall of Pipe Ridnare, Gough of Perryhall, Wilson, Allen, Lawton, Unwin, Floyr, Inge of Thorpe-Constantine, Dyson, Murhall, Moreton, Trafford, Ward, Jervis, Arblester of Longdon, &c. Since the accession of the House of Brunswick we may mention the names, among many others, of Townsend, Davenport, Lawley of Canvell, Twrton, Heathcote of Longford, Fowler, Molineux, Marsh of Wornberne, &e. In the present day the families of Leveson-Gower, Talbot, Ryder, Bagot, Moseley, Buller, Adderley, Paget, Grey (Earl of Stamford) Littleton, Anson, Dyot, Legge, andWrottesley are among those which have the greatest position in the county.
The Messrs. Lysons supply us with a short summary of the general changes in property in Derbyshire since Domesday Book, of which we may here avail ourselves. "The only estates," they say, "which have continued in the descendants of those who were their possessors at the time of the Domesday Survey, are some manors of the Gresley family, which have passed to them in uninterrupted succession from their ancestor, Nigel de Statford'. The greater number of the estates of Henry de Ferrara were parcelled out among his retainers, not long after the date of this survey, by Henry de Ferrara, and his son Robert, the first Earl, Ferrars. Among those who had grants from the former we find the ancestor of the Fitztlerberts, who still (1817) possesses the estates then granted. The manors which were retained by the Ferrara family in their own hands were forfeited by Robert, Earl. of Derby, in the reign of Henry III., and became parcel of the Duchy of Lancaster. Ralph Fitzllubert was ancestor of the Frechvilles," as we have already mentioned. "The estates of Walter Deincourt continued in his descendants till they became divided between coheiresses, in the reign of Henry VI. The estates of the Barons Musard passed to coheiresses in the reign of Edward II. ; a marriage with one of them increased the landed property of the Frechvilles. Among the possessors. of considerable landed property in the reign of Henry IL,. we find only the Shirleys and Carzons who retain any part
of it at the present day. Among the larger landed proprietors of later date may be mentioned the Vernons of Haddon, whose estates have passed by inheritance to the Duke of Rutland; the Longfords and Leakes, whose estates have been dispersed ; the Montgomereys, whose estates passed by inheritance to Lord Vernon's ancestors and the representatives of the other coheiresses ; the Stanhopes, whose estates are now held by three noble families of that name ; the Talbots, and Cavendishes. The estates of Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, in Derbyshire have been partly divided among coheiresses, and have partly passed by gift of Elizabeth, Countess of Shrewsbury,"—Bess of Hardwicke, —" to the family of Sir William Cavendish, her husband. These estates, with numerous grants of Abbey lands, have passed to his. descendant, the Duke of Devonshire, who has by far the largest. landed property in the county, and is lessee under the Crown of the greater portion of the Ferrars estate, which was annexed to to the Duchy of Lancaster."
Among other leading families of Derbyshire at the present day we may mention those of Crewe of Cake Abbey, Mundy of Shipley and Markeaton, and Colvile ; and from manufacturing sources, Arkwright and Evans.