Still to be reviewed and recompiled March 2014

[Also spelt - Blachforde: Blashford: Blatchford: Blackford: Blackforde]

Woollen Drapers of Dorchester in Dorset England

Link to the book "BLACHFORD A Family History" by A.G. Blachford

A more wide ranging account of this family can be accessed via the above link which some researchers of this family name may find useful. The author A. G. Blachford known as Jack sadly died in 1993 and his account of the family appears by kind permission of his descendent Owen Strickland.

Earlier researchers into the family maintain that Richard Blachford (c1570-1652) and John Blachford (c1574-1632) of Dorchester were sons of William Blachford (c1545-1624) of Holleway in the Parish of Whitestaunton(1) which sits on the southern boundary of the County of Somerset on it's border with Devon just 3 miles north west of Chard. I leave it to others to research their ancestry as it's outside my main area of interest and few records (including parish registers) have yet been transcribed and made available on-line for Somerset or Devon making access to reliable information at the moment particularly difficult.

The following account concentrates upon William Blachford and his sons after they moved to Dorchester (c1593) and seeks to provide detailed source material to aid further research.

Compiled by Michael Russell OPC for Dorchester & Fordington Feb 2014


The clearest evidence of the presence of William Blachford, in Dorchester surprisingly comes not from surviving records in Dorchester (which are peculiarly silent on the matter) but from the port books and petty custom records of the port of Weymouth. Thankfully an in depth study of these was undertaken by Maureen Weinstock M.A.F.R.HistS. who published them in 1953 under the title 'Studies in Dorset History' (2). Although many of the records were fragmentary she was able to identify trading through the port of Weymouth during January and February 1625 when she located a total of 141 men and two women who had a share in a cargo. In her words "Who then were the ship owners and merchants using these port facilities".

They were mainly Dorchester and Weymouth men (although it has not been possible to identify all of them). The man who dominates this shipping however is William Blachford who is described as a merchant clothier from Dorchester. In 1625 there were 55 cargoes of cloth which left Weymouth, and he had a share in 36 of them with his son John Blachford having a share in a further 7. The next largest exporters were also Dorchester men, Richard Samborne with 18 loads and the wealthy clothier James Gould (1593-1676) with 8. A few years later James is listed amongst the 119 investors in John White's famous 'Dorchester Company' as was Josias Coothes a linen draper who lived in Sherborne with 5 loads, and William Whiteway Senior with 3.

Compared with these Dorchester shipments the Weymouth merchants had many fewer loads. Henry Waltham had 10, Thomas Waltham and James James 4, Henry Mitchell 3, and T.Rose, H Russell, D Gier and R. Maior 2 each. The import figures for the same year show John Blachford with 24, James Gould 17, Richard Samborne 16, Josias Coothes 14, with four other Dorchester merchants also receiving loads. Moreover not only did Dorchester merchants send more cargoes through Weymouth but the loads themselves were larger. I do not live in Dorset but a further study of these records specifically tracking Blachford family cargoes would give us a better idea of over what period William Blachford and his sons were operating but on the face of it William was still alive in 1625. I have not however been able to trace his burial (3) but Maureen's research does at least give us a basis for believing that he was the largest merchant operating through the port and would have been a wealthy man of some influence in Dorchester. I find it surprising therefore that such an influential character has not left any trace of his presence within the records of Dorchester itself. I think this may be because few records survive prior to 1610 and by that date I think most of the Blachford Family Interests in Dorchester were already firmly under the control of his sons Richard and John Blachford.

Richard BLACHFORD (c1570-1652)

We can create an account of Richard's life with a great deal more confidence because a lot of prime source material has survived. Chief among these is the family pedigree (reproduced above) which his son actually signed before the heralds at the Visitation of London in 1633 (4), but lets not get ahead of ourselves.

According to A.G.Blachford's Family History, Richard Blachford (c1570-1652) of Dorchester spent his early years in the employ of Gilbert Smyth, a merchant in the town of Exeter who imported and exported goods through the port of Weymouth and that "He started his own business in Dorchester in approximately 1593 going into partnership with John Finn and also with his eldest son John Blachford, importing and exporting wool and other goods through many ports between Bristol and London". (5)

Marriage to Frances COMBES of Ashmore c1597

As far as we can tell Richard married Frances COMBES of Ashmore (as shown in the above pedigree) around the year 1597(6). This would traditionally have been in his brides parish where unfortunately parish registers have not survived prior to 1651. We know her grandfather Walter Combe had leased the manor farm of Ashmore from Sir William Powlett in 1563 and that Walter had at least 2 sons, John Combe (c1557-1608) who was the eldest son (and Frances father), and Richard Combe (c1559) of Farnham in Dorset who was later to buy the farm outright from Sir William in 1619 for £2,482(7,8). Coming from such a wealthy family I would also have expected Frances to have had a marriage settlement under which she would have taken her inheritance. John Combe of Ashmore died in 1608 and as expected she is not mentioned in his will which was proved on 19th August that year(9). Her farther however leaves many bequests to his godchildren and one of these is to John Blachford who was Richard and Frances eldest child. There is no mention of his wife who presumably pre-deceased him, or heirs which explains how Richard Combe inherited the lease and subsequently purchased manor farm.

Bailiff of Dorchester - 1609

Although he is alleged to have come to Dorchester circa 1593 the earliest evidence that I can trace of Richard Blachford being there is when he was elected Bailiff of the town in the 7th year of the reign of James I (10). This regnal year ran for 12 months from 24th March 1608 and he would have been elected to the post in the last week of September or the first week of October 1609. He would have already been a Capital Burgess and a respected member of the Corporation by that date and his term of office would therefore have run from Oct 1609 to Sep 1610. One of his functions as Bailiff would have been to witness deeds of transfer of land, wills etc but unfortunately deeds from his period of tenancy do not appear to have survived.

Of much greater significance is the Charter dated 26th June 1610 which was granted to Dorchester by James I (painting left is dated 1606). Under the Charter the King devolved power to the Corporation a body politic enabling them to hold land, appoint officials, control trade in the Borough, lay down bye laws and where necessary imprison those that refused to comply. There were earlier charters but this is the first to survive and is recorded in the Municipal Records of Dorchester. It names the first 15 Capital Burgesses who are to form the Corporation and from within their number names Richard Blachford junior as one of the first two Bailiffs for the town. The reference to junior is puzzling but I have assumed this is our Richard Blachford (c1570-1652) (11). As one of the main signatories of the Charter he was clearly an important member of the ruling elite in the town.

Living in Dorchester, Richard would almost certainly have been present at Holy Trinity Church a few months later when on 6th October 1610 his brother John BLACHFORD (c1574-1632) married Margaret MEMBREE and probably again at the christening of their daughter a year later in the same church. (Link to seperate section for an account of John's life and descendants).

The Great Fire of Dorchester - 1613

In the early afternoon on the 6th day of August 1613 Dorchester suffered the worst fire in it's history (12). Although there were to be other later fires, none devastated the town more than this one. It destroyed over 170 houses (about half of the town) including most of the public buildings, inns, stables, shops and warehouses surrounding the high street together with all their stores. Of the three main churches only Holy Trinity seems to have escaped the flames. The driving force behind the restoration of the town was the Rev John White (1575-1648) who set about raising funds and looking after the less fortunate.

Richard Blachford & his brother John no doubt witnessed this catastrophic event as we know Richard was closely involved in the rebuilding of the town. Matthew Chubb, the richest man in Dorchester, lent £1,000 after receiving a promise from the King that he could offset the amount against the next subsidy and a Nationwide campaigne for funds was organised though John White and the Corporation. Matthew Chubb was no Puritan and according to David Underdown his attitude to John White was 'one of undisguised hostility' so it's not suprising to find the holder of these funds, both for collection and distribution, was Matthew Chubb himself assisted by his close friend Richard Blachford. We know they were friends from a sermon given in the ruins of All Saints church on Christmas day 1613 by the Rev William Jones. He had it published and dedicated it to 'Matthew Chubb and his friends Richard & Thomas Blachford'. As we might expect there is some indication that properties owned by the Blachford family suffered in the fire(13) .

The 8 Children Of Richard & Frances Blachford

    1. John Blachford (c1598-aft 1661?) of Dorchester the eldest son;

    2. William Blachford (c1599-1639), living in Cayne [Caen] Normandy(4) in 1633 and is said to have died there in 1639. This might be correct as the House of Commons Journal for 16 April 1641 has an entry (14) for "An Act for the Naturalization of William Blachford, son of William Blachford, of Dorchester, Merchant". If his father had died and he was born in France this might have been necessary for his return to live and trade in England.

    3. Richard Blachford (c1601-1635), he became a merchant, living in London in 1633 when he recorded the family pedigree before the heralds at the visitation of London that year(4). Described as Richard Blachford of Dorchester he married by licence on 16 Aug 1623 at St Mary the Virgin church in Fordingbridge in Hampshire.(15) His bride was Elinor the daughter of Robert Waterton of Newport from the Isle of Wight (4) by his wife Jayne Molyns. Robert Waterton was the owner of Sandhill which appears to have descended to him from his wife's family - he left 2 daughters.

    The arms shown in the visitation record are his, rather than his fathers, so the Blatchford Coat of Arms is correctly depicted on the left of the shield(16). The coat of arms on the right of the shield, with the ostrich feathers at the top, are the arms of the Molyns Family and can be viewed on page 121 of the Visitation of Hampshire. He became entitled to use those arms on his marriage to Elinor and the joint shield when the Blachford arms were awarded to his father in 1629. Richard was buried in the cloister at St Mary’s church Woolnoth London on 10 Nov 1635.(17). By 1633 they had 4 children:-

      3.1 Robert Blachford (1624-1670), son and heir, his age is given as being 9 years old in the 1633 Visitation making his year of birth 1624. He was duly baptised on 21 Jan 1625 at St Michael's church in Bassishaw in London.(18) He married 1st to Elizabeth Wright on 30 Mar 1647 at Rockbourne Hants(19); buried 13 Oct 1670 Newport IOW (9b); According to a descendant Mark Wareham(20) he was Lord of the Manor of Durston Manor at Taunton in Somerset. He also lived at Sandhill in Fordingbridge and inherited both from his grandfather Robert Waterton who in turn received the Manors from his marriage to Jayne Moleyns. Robert received the lands at Over Burgate, Fordingbridge. In his will of 1670 he said he was now of Newport, Isle of Wight. Left manor of 'Crosse Scittault' in Durston, Somerset to his son Daniel. Also left land called Heathley Left Sandhill Manor to his son Robert (who sold the manor in 1702 to Thomas Warre) This son went to Exeter College Oxford matriculating in 1669 at the age of 18. More detailed information can be obtained from the web address given below and the online in History of the County of Hampshire Volume 4 pages 567-577 via the british History Online web site. His original will is available at the National Archives.(24)
      3.2 Richard 2nd son Bap 12 Sep 1627 at St Michael's church in Bassishaw in London.(9) buried 21 Aug 1662 Ringwood Hampshire(9b);
      3.3 Frances eldest daughter said to have married a Stephen Marsh(18)
      3.4 Elinor baptised 20 Nov 1628 at St Michael's church in Bassishaw in London.(9) . Said to have died in Dorchester in 1637(18)

    4. Henry Blachford ( c1601- 1647) a Merchant in Chichester married Mary Bird of Chichester on 30 Oct 1629(12) and was held prisoner at Arundel Castle(25) committed there by the accompts committee of the House of commons but released on bail 25 Jan 1646, he died at Chichester his will being dated 17th day of Dec 1647- probate was granted on 21 Feb 1648. There are records of property sales by him in 1642 & in 1648 by his widow Mary Blashford of Chichester on the A2A Web site. I have transcribed his will below.

      In the name of God Amen: I Henry BLANCHARD of the City of Chichester in the County of Sussex Merchant being sick & weak in body but of sound sane and disposing memory for which I thank the Lord God do make and ordain my Last Will and Testament in the manner and form following, renouncing hereby all former Wills made by me

      And: firstly I bequeath my soul into the hands of Almighty God and my Saviour Jesus Christ desiring pardon for all my sins nothing doubting but confidently believing that by the death and passion of my said Saviour to be externally saved.

      And: my body I leave to the Earth to be decently buried in Christian burial.

      Item: I give to the poor people of the Parish of St Peters in the said City forty shillings to be distributed amongst them within 3 months after my decease at the discretion of my dear and loving wife Marie BLANCHFORD.

      Item: I give and bequeath to my said wife her executors administrators and assigns the lease I hold of the messuage or tenement premises called ENDTONE? by the name of the Sign of the Swan in the said City and all the premises in the said lease demised

      And: also the lease I hold for Sir John MORLEY Knight of Parnell of the Broyle farm near the said City and all the premises in the said lease demised To have and to hold the said several leases and the demised premises unto my said wife her executors administrators and assigns for and during the residue remainder of the several terms of years in the said several leases yet to come and expired.

      And also whereas I have an obligation made to my wife's mother Elianor BIRD for the remaining of the said lease of the premises parcel of Broyle Farm aforesaid I give and bequest the said obligation to my said wife her executors administrators and assigns with all profit and benefit thereof and power to renew the said lease according to the tenor and effort of the said obligation to the use of my said wife her executors administrators and assigns.

      Also I give and bequeath to my said wife her executors administrators and assigns due obligation wherein Charles COMBES standeth bound to me for payment of ten pounds per annum during the natural life of my mother Frances BLACHFORD with all benefit profit and advantage that may by had and raised by force and vintue of the said obligation

      Item: I further give and bequeath to my said wife and to my daughter Marie BLACHFORD all my goods chattels plate and implements of household stuff whatsoever (Excepting such goods and implements of household stuff as are in the house wherein my late servant Johan BROWNE Spinster now lives) to be equally divided between my said wife and daughter

      Item: Whereas I have mortgaged my capital messuage or tenement and garden in the South Street of the said City to Thomas COBLE And also I have mortgaged other my messuage's or tenements and premises in the said street and also in the lane lying from the South Gate to the East Gate under the walls of the said City unto Robert STANDEN for redemption of which several mortgages I give and bequeath to my said wife Marie BLACHFORD and my good friend Mr. John FARRINGTON of the said City Gentleman all the lands and tenements in which I am seized of my estate in fee simple or fee sale situate lying and being in West Stoke in the said County with the appurtenances to have and to hold unto my said wife and the said John FARRINGTON their heirs and assigns for ever, To that intent and purpose and of several such and consivents? that my said wife and the said John FARRINGTON and their heirs shall with what convenient speed they may sell my said lands and tenements in West Stoke to the best advantage they can And the money thereof or by the sale thereof to be raised shall be by them paid for and towards redemption of the said several mortgaged premises And if the money to be raised on the sale of the said lands and tenements be not sufficient to redeem the said mortgaged premises Then my will and meaning is that the remainder of the money for redeeming the mortgaged premises shall be raised out of the yearly rents and profits of the said mortgaged premises And for that end and that intent and purpose I give unto the said John FARRINGTON and my said wife their executors administrators and assigns the yearly rents revenues and profits of the said mortgaged premises with full power and authority to let sell and dispose thereof for raising the said monies to have and to hold unto them their executors administrators and assigns until sufficient money shall be raised as aforesaid for the redemption thereof And that after the said monies shall be paid and satisfied for redemption of the said mortgaged premises then I declare my will and meaning to be:

      And: I give and bequeath to my oldest son Richard BLACHFORD and his heirs for ever the said great capital messuage or tenement and garden backside and Coach house and stable with the appurtenances now in the occupation of the said Sir John MORLEY (except such the messuage's tenements and premises as I have after in this my will given to my said daughter Mary BLACHFORD and her heirs) To have and to hold to him my son Richard and his heirs for ever from and immediately after he shall have attained his full age of six and twenty years if he shall for so long live. And until he shall or might have so attained his said age of six and twenty years I give and bequeath the rents issues and profits of the said premises so given to my son Richard as aforesaid (after the said mortgage shall be so redeemed) unto my said wife Mary BLACHFORD for the maintenance of her and my children

      Item: I give and bequeath to my said daughter Mary BLACHFORD and her heirs for ever All my messuage's and tenements in the said South Street and Lane leading from South Gate under the South Wall to the said East Gate (other than such messuage's tenements and premises as are now in the tenure and occupation of the said Sir John MORLEY and are not formally in this my will given and bequeathed to my said son Richard BLACHFORD to have and to hold unto my said daughter her heirs and assigns for ever from and immediately after she shall have attained her age of twenty years or day of marriage which ever of them shall first happen. And until she shall have so attained her said age or be married I give the said messuage's tenements and premises to my said wife for the maintenance of her and my children.

      Item: I give and bequeath to my youngest son William BLACHFORD and his heirs for ever the messuage or tenement wherein I now live with the stable backside and gardens thereunto belonging (Except the house wherein the said Johan BROWNE now lives and the curtilage thereunto belonging) to have and to hold to my said son William BLACHFORD his heirs and assigns for ever immediately from and after he shall or might have attained his full age of one and twenty years And until he shall or might have attained his said age I give the said messuage tenement and premises to my said wife and her assigns for the maintenance of her and her children

      Item: I give and bequeath to the said Joane BROWNE the messuage or tenement wherein she lyeth with the curtilage or backside thereunto belonging to have and to hold to the said Joane BROWNE and her assigns for and during the term of twenty years to commence next from and after my decease if she the said Joane shall for long live sole and unmarried And after the death or marriage of the said Joane I give and bequeath the said messuage tenement and curtilage to my said son William BLACHFORD and his heirs for ever

      Item: I give and bequeath to said Joane BROWNE all such my goods and implements of household stuff which she hath of mine in the said house wherein she now dwells

      Item: I give and bequeath to Whereas I stand instantly and truly indebted to my good friend and neighbour Mr Richard WILLIAMS of the said City in several sums of money I declare my will and meaning to be And I desire my executors hereafter named to see the same debt instantly paid with all convenient speed And to pay it him accordingly

      Item: I give and bequeath to my loving brother Christopher BIRD one gold ring with a death head worth thirteen shillings four pence And whereas I instantly stand indebted to the said Christopher in certain monies the sum whereof I now remember not I declare my wife to pay it out of the rents and profits of the said messuage's lands and tenements I have in this will given unto her by paying the said Christopher twenty pounds per annum until the said money be fully paid

      Item: I make and ordain my said son William BLACHFORD executor of this my will And because he is in infancy and not yet of years sufficient in law to take the said executorship upon him therefore I make and ordain my said wife Marie BLACHFORD and my loving kinsman Timothy BUTTE Gentleman executors of this my will until my said son shall be of sufficient age in law to take the said executorship upon him

      Item: I give and bequeath to Elizabeth WATLIE servant to the said Joane BROWNE forty shillings to be paid her within two years after my decease

      In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal

      Dated the seventeenth day of December in the three and twentieth year of the reign of our Sovereign Lord King Charles od England Scotland France and Ireland Etc Anno Domini [In the year of our Lord] One thousand six hundred forty seven

      H BLACHFORD: Signed Sealed delivered and published in the presence of us George BUTLER; Jasper SOUNTER; William WILLIAMS; Christopher BIRD


      PROBATE: Was granted to Maria BLACHFORD Relict of the deceased on 21 Feb 1648

    5. Frances Blachford (c1604-) married John Seward a merchant of Lime [Lyme Regis] Dorset

    6. Thomas Blachford (c1605-aft1644) married Margaret Meech  2 Oct 1627 (2 & 6) probably in St Peters Church in Dorchester lived in Roane [Rouen] Normandy(4) from 1 June 1632 and is thought to have died there approx 1644.

    7. Margery Blachford(c1609-) uxor [wife of] John Howard of Lime [Lyme Regis] Dorset (4)

    8. Edith Blachford (c1613-1670/1) according to William Whiteway's diary entry for 25th July 1630 she married Richard Churchill of Dorchester (d. 1672/3) (the 3rd son of John Churchill (1568-1621) of Muston and Elinor Miller (d.1641) on 14th September. The parish registers for Holy Trinity have survived and they are not recorded there, so they in all likelyhood married in St Peters Church (records start 1654) where her father was buried in 1621 and her mother joined him in 1641. Edith was buried at St Peters on 10th March 1670/1 folowed by her husband Richard on 17th April 1672. Richard left a will in which his bequests were to their 4 surviving children Sarah, Richard, John and Willian Churchill.

His Brother
John BLACHFORD (c1574-1632)(JB1)

Richard Blachford's younger brother John married in Holy Trinity Church in Dorchester on 6th October 1610 and settled in the parish to raise his family. His bride was Margaret MEMBREE [Membry] (1586-1680/1) the eldest child of William Membree and Alice nee Samways and she had been baptised in the parish on Christmas day 1586 and was therefore 24 years old at marriage(JB2). Like his father John Blachard was a merchant clothier importing and exporting merchandise through the port of Weymouth. He died in 1632 being buried in the parish on 23rd of November. followed by his wife Margaret on 24th Jan 1680/1.

    John and Margaret had the following children baptised at Holy Trinity Church Dorchester:-

    (1) Elizabeth Blatchford (b.1611) bap 2nd July 1611

    (2) John Blatchford (1614-1614) bap 25th April 1614 and buried there 8th May 1614

    (3) Frances Blatchford (1614-1615) bap 25th April 1615 and buried there 1st September 1615

    (4) Dorothy Blatchford (b.1616) bap 12th October 1616

    (5) John Blatchford (b. 1618) bap 24th January 1618

    (6) Margaret Blatchford (1621-1624) bap 29 April 1621 - appears to have been buried as Martha Blatchford on 25th April 1624

    (7) Margaret Blatchford (1625-1642/3) bap 16th October 1625 and buried there 11th January 1642/3

    (8) Sarah Blatchford (1628/9-1629) bap 8th March 1628/9 and buried HT 10 August 1629

    (9) Henry Blatchford (1632) bap 29th April 1632

Genealogical Notes:-

(1). British History On-Line Victoria County History for Whitestaunton;

(2). Studies in Dorset History by Maureen Weinstock M.A.,F.R.Hist.S Published by Longmans (Dorchester)Ltd at the Friary Press 1953. Pages 31, 32, 35, 39, 40, 44-46 & 49 . The size of cargoes is based on the amounts of duty paid on them eg page 36.

(3). I am aware that some prior researchers have alledged that William Blachford was buried in Dorchester on 12th April 1624. Burial registers for that year only survive for Holy Trinity (where most Blachfords were buried) and St Georges Church in Fordington and his name does not appear. Nor have I so far traced where this date originates.What concerns me is that we have William Whiteways diary for 1618-1635 within which he notes prominate deaths which occur in Dorchester each year and his name does not feature. I am pretty sure therefore that he did not die in Dorchester and probably not until a bit later. If anyone knows where this date originates from plaese let me know. Weymouth did not have an angican church in 1624 but I also checked Melcombe Regis which served the area and where parish registers have survived but to no avail.

(4). The Visitation of London 1633 made by Sir Henry St George Kt Herald of Richmond and deputy Marshall to Sir Richard St George Kt Clarencieux King of Arms and published by the Harleain Society in London in 1880 - Volume 1 - See Page 80 Blashford

(5). So far I have been unable to verify where this information came from, mainly because very little in the way of documentation has (at Mar 2014) been transcribed on-line for Somerset or Devon and my expertise is confined to Dorset. There is no trace of transcations with either Gilbert Smythe or John Finn in the Municipal Records of Dorchester, nor have I been able to locate anything on the A2A website for Somerset or Devon. It may be some light can be shed on it from the Weymouth Port Books and Petty Custom returns or other documentation held in Devon.

(6). On average men married at the age of 27 at this time - see genealogical note 3 in the biography of the Life of Anthony Eames for more background to this research.

(7). The History of the parish of Ashmore with a listing of the surviving Parish Registers have been published by the society of St Andrew so I have provided this link to it. An account of the Combe family is given on page 15 which also refers to a lawsuit in 1619 involving Richard Combe who was then described as being 60 years old. As we know he was the younger brother this gives us an approximate date of birth for the brothers which is useful as Parish Registers only survive from 1651 -- which is confirmed by the Dorset History Centre whose parish listing can also be accessed on-line.

(8). The original deeds for the sale of Ashmore farm to Richard Combe in 1619 are held at the London Metropolitan Archives the following extract is from the A2A website "Bargain and Sale from 1) Sir William Powlett, of Edington, Wilts, Sir John Powlett, Sir Hercules Powlett, Hector Powlett and George Estmond of Middle Temple, to 2) Richard Coombe of Ashmore, yeoman, of the messuage and farmhouse of Ashmore, with kitchen, bakehouse, brewhouse, gardens and orchards of 2 acres a plot where the smith's house stands, meadows and pastures etc Consideration £2512 ACC/1017/0170 1619" There are a number of other documents relating to Richard Combe of Farnham in Dorset and Anne his wife including the sale of the farm in 1630.

(9). The Will of John (recorded in latin as Johannis) Combe of Ashmore's is held at the Prerogative Court of Canterbury PROB/11/111 Windlebanck quire 1-55. It can be viewed by members at [Note to locate:- go to card index; search for 'prerogative'; and then John Combe; died 1608] .

(10). Richard Blachford (1570-1642) was first elected to be Bailiff of Dorchester during the 7th year of the reign of James I (1608/9) and again in 1616/7; 1620/1 1627 and 1639. Link to Bailiffs of Dorchester File" His election on two of these occasions was recorded by William Whiteway of Dorchester in His Diary (1618-1635) published by the Dorset Record society in 1991.

(11). Hutchins in his ' History and Antiquities of the County of Dorset' only refers to 'Richard Blachford' as the Bailiff elected in 7th year of James I's reign and as the signator of the 1610 Charter. The transcription of the charter undertaken by Charles Herbert Mayo, and recorded in the Municipal Records in 1908, is on page 41 and definately states 'junr., '. This was transcribed from Latin and the Latin version is also published on page 45 and again states 'Ricardum Blachford Juniorem' menaing 'junior'. The meaning of 'junior' in the 17th century was slightly different in that it refers to a younger person of the same name and does not necessarily mean that they are father and son. From what we know of the family Richard's own son who would have been referred to as Junior is thought to have been born circa 1601 and if this is correct he clearly can't be the Bailiff of Dorchester who signed the Charter. There is mention of a Richard Blachard junior being admitted to the company of Freemen on 2nd March 1623/4 which is what we would expect of his son born around 1601. Conversely there is another brief mention of a 'Richard Blachford' (no mention of junior) in the Municipal Records on page 706 for the year 1610 when his name appears in a list of 31 senior town officials who all failed to appear at the autumn Assizes (usually held at Bridport) for jury service etc and collectively had to pay a £27.10s fine. Richards own father as far as we know was William Blachford so I have provided these notes in case more information comes to light, but I have assumed for now that the Bailiff was our Richard Blachford (c1570-1652).

(12).'Fire from Heaven' Life in an English Town in the Seventeenth Century by David Underdown Published by Pimlico in 1992. Also 'John White Founder of Massachusetts' by Frances Rose-Troup FRHS Published 1930 by GP Putnam's London who tells us page 29 that of the 170 houses burnt 59 were in Holy Trinity Parish, 33 in St Peter's and 78 in All Saints. and theri value was estimated at £39,384.

(13). Rose Troup quotes as her source Chancery procedings 604/246, 7th June 1632

(14). Journal of the House of Commons Volume 2 dated 16 April 1641 page 121 - also 28th June 1641 2nd referal Page 190 & passed by committee after questions 12 April 1642 Page 524

(15). Hampshire: - Marriage Licences, Rich Blechford of Dorchester & Elinor Waterton of Newport sp, at Fordingbridge, 16 Aug 1623.

(16). The Blachford Coat of Arms are also recorded by Sir Bernard Burke in 'The General Armoury of England' on page 86 and this informs us that the arms of 'Blachford of London and Dorchester' were only awarded in 1629.

(17). London Metropolitan Archives St Mary Woolnoth, Composite register: baptisms, marriages and burials, 1558 - 1641, P69/MRY15/A/001/MS07635, Item 001. Image available on also IGI Film 845260

(18). International Genealogical Index run by the Church of Latter Day Saints extraction programme [not a member entry] Film 845260. Also original Parish register St Michael Bassishaw, London, England image available on "1625 January 21st was bapt Robert Blachford ye sonne of Richard Blachford & Elinor his wife2"

(19). International Genealogical Index run by the Church of Latter Day Saints extraction programme [not a member entry] Film1041287 Batch M14653-1

(JB1). Parish Registers for Holy Trinity Church in Dorchester, images are available on for members and a transcription is available on this site I have annotated each entry in the transcription to link to this account.

(JB2). Margarets parents had married in Holy Trinity Church Dorchester the year before she was born on 18th Dec 1585. She had 3 younger brothers that I know of Reuben born in 1593; John born in 1597 and George born in January 1599/1600 who may have been named to replace a younger brother buried at HT on 16th Dec 1599. Her father William Membree was buried at HT on 27th Jan 1616/7 but I could not trace her mothers death.


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