Alefounder on the Map

Alefounder on the Map

This section is concerned with the use of the surname Alefounder as the name of a place or topographical feature. In each case, I have attempted to discover precisely which Alefounder it was named after, usually one who owned it at some time.

Alefounders Field, Great Wigborough

Land Tax Assessments - land owned by George Alefounder
Place Dates Occupier Assessment
1781, 1782 Jese Ward £4 0s 0d
1790 Jesse Ward £4 0s 0d
1798 Jas Merchant £4 0s 0d
1800 Jas Marchant £4 0s 0d
1810 Smith £4 0s 0d
1811 Joseph Smith £4 0s 0d
Wix or
1781, 1782, 1790 Stephen Bareman £2 0s 0d
1798, 1800, 1810 Joseph Sorrell £2 0s 0d
1815, 1817-1820, 1825 Nathl Sorrell £2 0s 0d
1826, 1827 Bardox Land £2 0s 0d
1828-1831 Bardox Farm £2 0s 0d
Alefounders Field is mentioned by Waller (1906), and the information appears to be from the tithe commutation awards. On the tithe award map (1833) for Great Wigborough appears a field called "Alefounders and Waylands", 8A 3R 13P, owned and occupied by William Hutley. Land Tax assessments for 1781 to 1811 list George Alefounder as the owner of land in Great Wigborough, and from 1781 to 1830 as owner of land in Wix. An extract (Essex Record Office D/DCm F1/22) of a will made by Sarah Burdock or Burdox shows that she left land in Great Wigborough and Wix to "my two Nephews or Grt. Nephews Geo: Alefounder & Jno. Alefounder (the Infant Grandchildn. of my late sister Vaughan who have been since her death & now are under my care & tuition)". The land in Great Wigborough was occupied by Jesse Ward or his assigns, just as in the Land Tax assessments. I think that there can be no doubt that the field derived its name from George Alefounder, 1755-1840 (Colchester pedigree).

Great Wigborough fields map

Click on map to enlarge

Although many of the fields have since been merged, there is still a good correspondence between the boundaries of those that remain and the field boundaries as shown on the tithe map for Great Wigborough, certainly sufficient to allow identification of the field in question. On the map on the right, present day field boundaries are shown in red, those from the tithe map in yellow and the field designated as "Alefounders and Waylands" is shown in green.

Alefounders Fields, Burnham

This appears in the Land Tax Assessments, 1782 (Essex Record Office ref Q/RP1 264), in the ownership of John Challans, who also owned "House" and "Lavers". A certain Daniel Alefounder owned "Romans". Daniel Alefounder married Hannah Tytch in Burnham in 1776, and a Thomas Alefounder was buried there in 1781. These are the earliest Alefounder references that I have for Burnham, and I cannot say how the fields acquired their name.

Alefounder's Wood

Mary Blyth of Langham, Essex 1801 left "Unto said James Blyth, with whom I now reside: (1) Freehold and copyhold tenements, etc., called Lyrches, Alefounder's Wood, and Cattswent Wood, at Langham, which my late husband, Thomas Blythe, bought of Henry Nunn of Manningtree, surgeon ..."
- C. Partridge, Essex Review, vol xlviii (I1939) p 167

I have not found Alefounder's Wood marked on any map. The mention of Langham led me to examine the manorial records for that place. The earliest reference to the Wood in the available records is in 1654, a sale by Ezekiel Cole to John Clerk, its area being given as 22 acres. Earlier purchases (1609-1616) by Robert Alefounder are for much smaller parcels of woodland: all three parts of 5 acres to which three sisters had become co-heirs. There can be no certainty that this is the same land which he sold to Ezekiel Cole in 1629, nor that this then formed part of, or gave the name to, Alefounder's Wood, but I have no better idea for the source of the name. The Robert Alefounder mentioned is likely to be the one who lived from about 1551 to 1630 (Dedham pedigree).

Alefounders House, Langham

According to A History of the County of Essex: Vol. 10, Alefounders is now a cottage, having been converted from a 14th or 15th century granary which had been part of New House farm. The term cottage is a little misleading: this is in fact a substantial house with outbuildings, including a thatched cottage. Alefounders House was put up for sale in August 2007 with an asking price of £735000.

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Last updated 27th April 2012 by Peter Alefounder

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