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  • VOICES FROM THE PAST

    INVENTORIES & WILLS FROM

    THE PARISH OF INGLETON

    1548 TO 1700

    Edited by:

    Carol Howard Sheila Gordon

    INGLEBOROUGH ARCHAEOLOGY GROUP

    Typesetting & print production by UK Book Publishing

    ☞ ☜

  • Drawings by Frank Gordon

    CHAFER

    RECKON CROOK

    LINE WHEEL

    BRANDRETH ARK

  • Ingleton parish showing the area covered by the inventories and wills

    Broadrake

    Twisleton Manor

    Bruntscar

    Twisleton Hall

    to Bentham & Bowland

    Weathercote Chapel-le-Dale

    Whernside

    Southerscales

    to Clapham & Settle

    Winterscales

    Coldcotes

    Yarlsber

    Cross Farm

    not to scale

    to Dent

    Ribblehead

    Ellerbeck

    Twisleton

    Dale

    Fell End

    to Hawes

    Gearstones

    Goat Gap

    High Leys

    Hill Inn

    Holly Platt

    Ingleton

    Ingleborough

    Ivescar

    to Kendal

    Kingsdale Beck

    Langber

    Moorgarth

    Scales Moor

    Scar End

    Skirwith

    Slatenber

  • © 2015 Ingleborough Archaeology Group

    www.ingleborougharchaeologygroup.org.uk

    ingleborougharchaeologygroup@gmail.com

    Cover photograph by Carol Howard

    Typesetting & print production by UK Book Publishing

    www.ukbookpublishing.com

    Printed in the UK

  • 1

    INVENTORIES & WILLS FROM THE PARISH OF INGLETON 1548 TO 1700

    INTRODUCTION 1. This collection of inventories and wills is the culmination of a project undertaken by members of the Ingleborough Archaeology Group. The team of transcribers were:

    The initial transcriptions were done individually and were then edited and collated by Carol Howard and Sheila Gordon. These are the documents relating to the parish of Ingleton that have survived among the records of the Archdeaconry of Richmond, most of which are stored in the Lancashire Archives Office in Preston. In the Tudor period however Ingleton lay within the parish of Bentham in the deanery of Lonsdale. The transcribers worked mainly from photographs taken of the original documents by the editors and from photostats supplied by John Bentley, to whom we owe grate- ful thanks for his initiative in providing the inspiration for this project. The Borth- wick Institute proved a second valuable resource, with other material drawn from the National Archive Probate Office and the North Yorkshire County Record Office in Northallerton. We hope that by making the transcripts easily available, we have creat- ed a valuable research tool for local and family historians and reflected something of the voices from the past.

    Sheila Gordon

    Carol Howard

    David Johnson

    Jeff Price

    Philip Robinson

    Helen Sergeant

    Jill Sykes

  • 2

    VOICES FROM THE PAST

    2. Archival References.

    Unless stated otherwise all the transcripted documents form part of the collection held in the Lancashire Archives Office. The reference code is Lancashire Archives WRW/L.

    3. Editorial method.

    Consistency has been a prime consideration in editing the transcripts. Capital letters: the use of these has been retained despite difficulties posed by letters that show no clear differentiation, a prime example being the letter w. Spelling: The original spelling has been retained but spelling should not be confused with abbreviations. In the text placenames and surnames are spelled as in the docu- ment, with abbreviations extended where possible. Christian names have been given as read except for Xpofer, which is extended to the more familiar Christopher. Abbreviations: All abbreviations have where possible been extended. Ciphers and codes were popular and in frequent use during the seventeenth century, possibly a reflection of the instability of the time; an interest reflected in the widespread use of common- ly accepted abbreviations. A practice also advantageous in the more economic use of parchment. Unfortunately this can give a very distorted view of the general standard of literacy especially to the non-specialist reader. Distinguishing between the deliber- ate use of abbreviations and spelling anomalies may appear subjective but the following method has been applied. Where an abbreviation is in common use, it has been extend- ed. Item is given in full throughout, although the occasional Ittem/Itam is retained as a spelling error. Where the letter i is shown as y, it too is retained but not where y is a thorn replacing th as in ye. Wch is always shown as which and imprimis or inprimis is used throughout. Dates: The dates given in the sub-headings are taken from the documents concerned. The wills show the actual date not the date of probate. Punctuation: The documents were in the main well punctuated so an effort was made to retain the original punctuation despite practical difficulties caused by the deteriora- tion of the documents. No attempt was made to correct the punctuation. Numerals: Arabic numerals are the norm but where Roman numerals are used, these are transcribed as such. With the very occasional exception, where the £ sign is clearly indicated, the original li is retained, as in li. s. d. the old monetary system of pounds, shillings and pence.

  • 3

    INVENTORIES & WILLS FROM THE PARISH OF INGLETON 1548 TO 1700

    Blanks: Blank spaces in the text are shown as such. Where sums of money are not entered in the document, that space is also left blank. Deletions: With a few exceptions, as when the deletion is of particular interest, these are not retained. Illegible text: This is indicated by brackets. Suggestions as to the likely meaning are given within the brackets if this is thought appropriate. Damaged document: Tears and holes are indicated by square brackets. Where the doc- ument is badly worn and brackets obscure the meaning, then ........... is used. If an entire section of the document has been lost, for example one side having completely gone, then again this is indicated by ....... Editorial comment: In the text this is shown in italics.

    4. The Inventories

    Inventories were taken very shortly after the death of the testator by four sworn men acting as jurors, usually local men, often neighbours. They normally begin with a ref- erence to the value of the apparell of the deceased and the contents of their purse. This is usually followed by a list and valuation of the farming stock, then the household goods, sometimes obviously room by room. The general term of household “husle- ments” encapsulates any furniture or other equipment too menial to be listed sepa- rately. Similarly the term “husbandry geare” is used to indicate the value of miscella- neous objects about the farm. Any debts owed to the deceased then follow, succceeded by the list of debts owed. The inventory usually concludes with the final total of the value of goods less the testator’s debts.

    5. The Wills

    The text of the wills usually follows a set pattern, with the same opening phrase “In the name of god amen” followed by the date and the name of the testator, the parish and the county, sometimes the local area or residence is specified and the social po- sition of the deceased, usually yeoman or husbandman. The preamble that follows, stating that the deceased is of sound mind though sick in body is standard but the first bequest, which is invariably a dedication of the soul to God, varies in its intensity as reflecting the emotion and outlook of the time. Bequests usually follow and it is this section that throws light on the domestic life of the rural community; on family ties, property holdings, financial burdens or advantages, charitable giving and sometimes

  • 4

    VOICES FROM THE PAST

    the personalities involved. The natural provision for the widow, her widow-right, is normally specifically tied to her remaining single and ceases on her re-marriage; an attempt to retain the property within the family. Finally an executor is named and provision made for the inevitable funeral expenses. A list of witnesses concludes the business, some making their mark but many writing their name in full. The over- whelming impression is that of a literate and well informed section of society.

    6. The Parish of Ingleton

    The parish lies in the western extremity of North Yorkshire. Covering over fourteen thousand acres, with land rising from approximately 209 metres in the river valley to the peak of Whernside at 736 metres, to the west and the summit of Ingleborough at 723 metres, to the east, it is essentially high moorland, sheep grazing country, with cattle on the lower pastures. The population of the township of Ingleton has been estimated at c.450 in 1530 and c.650 in 1623. By 1700 it had risen to c.750.1

    Running through the parish are the rivers Twiss and Doe, converging to form the river Greta in the centre of Ingleton. The best grazing land lies along the val- leys and on the limestone terraces of Whernside and Ingleborough. Here scattered farms and remote settlements were established within three manors; Ingleton, Twis- leton-with-Ellerbeck and Newby Upper.

    The area or place of residence is normally given in the will as supporting the identi- fication of the deceased. Most are little more than farm holdings and the few hamlets number only a handfull of farms and cottages. To the north-west of Ingleton a farm track runs along the base of Whernside from Ribblehead to Elle