21st Battalion (4th Public Schools) Royal Fusiliers

Shortly after the outbreak of the First World War, Noel Downing enlisted and joined the 21st Battalion (4th Public Schools) Royal Fusiliers. In early Oct 1914 he arrived in Ashtead, Surrey where he was billeted. Noel kept a series of postcards that illustrate the new recruits’ arrival and early training and the construction of a vast encampment of huts in Woodcote Park, Epsom. Continue reading →
Last updated on 16 March 2019 by E Morgan

John Cartwright of Rowley Regis, died 1661

John Cartwright, the elder, a yeoman of Rowley Regis died and left a will granted probate on 17 May 1661. We can be fairly confident that he is the John Cartwright referred to in the Dudley Archive document DE/4/7/11/14 where a 1585 grant of land by Edward Sutton, Lord Dudley is extended to the next generation of Cartwrights dated 17 May 1612. This makes John Cartwright  the son of William Cartwright and names his two immediate siblings as William Cartwright (will 1668) and Alice Chambers alias Ireland. His grandfather is thus very likely to be John Cartwright of Rowley Regis who leaves a will of 1587.  Continue reading →
Last updated on 13 November 2018 by JJ Morgan

Adam Read, Barber Surgeon of Dudley

Adam Read was a Barber Surgeon in Dudley, who lived from approximately 1658 to 1717. He left a will dated 20 Jan 1716/17, which clarifies a number of points about his life Continue reading →
Last updated on 5 June 2018 by JJ Morgan

Eleanor Harman of Sutton Coldfield

Eleanor Harman who lived from about 1510 to 1579 did not leave a will but we can glean a fair amount about her life from the wills of her two husbands. As a wealthy widow in the Elizabethan era she achieved financial independence after 1565 and we can speculate she was able to espouse and promote certain views on religion and education – mainly to promote the memory of her Uncle Bishop VeseyContinue reading →
Last updated on 17 April 2018 by JJ Morgan

Robert Pudsey of Langley Hall

There are two versions of wills held in the National Archives relating to Robert Pudsey of Langley Hall, Sutton Coldfield, Warwickshire. The original was written on 10 Aug in the first year of the reign of Edward VI, i.e. 1547. Probate is granted in 1558 on this will but appears to be nullified. A further version written on 6 Jul is slightly different from the first but with Probate re-granted in 1561. There is also a Latin version of this second will. This is difficult to explain especially as the documents superficially seem similar and non contentious.  Continue reading →
Last updated on 12 October 2018 by JJ Morgan

John Astley of Bushbury

John Astley of Bushbury died and left a will written on 6 May 1679. It is clear from this will that he is the John Astley who signs William Dugdale’s Visitation on 27 Apr 1664 as head of the Astley family of Wood Eaton in mid Staffordshire. His age in 1664 is given as 70.  Continue reading →
Last updated on 12 April 2018 by JJ Morgan

Wilmot Evans’ Service Records, 1909-1916

This is a timeline of Wilmot Evans‘ military career. He was commissioned into the South Staffordshire Regiment at the age of 19. He served in Gibraltar and South Africa during peacetime and fought on the battlefields on the Western Front during the First World War until he was killed at the age of 25. Continue reading →
Last updated on 8 October 2019 by E Morgan

Clare Coleborne of Dudley

Clare Coleborne married Richard Jones of Dudley in about 1520. They were a wealthy burgher family in Dudley and she died and left a will probate date 19 Oct 1568 in which she names her three daughters and their respective husbands. She is thus demonstrably the common ancestor of both James Shaw and Sarah Bendy who marry on 22 Oct 1734 in Pattingham. Continue reading →
Last updated on 12 April 2018 by JJ Morgan

Richard Shaw of Pinfolds

Richard Shaw of Pinfolds is a significant but very hard member of the Shaw family of 16th century Dudley to pin down, as his life parallels that of his putative first cousin Richard Shaw of Netherton. Continue reading →
Last updated on 4 October 2018 by JJ Morgan

Elizabeth Bendy

Elizabeth Bendy was buried on 15 Mar 1607/8 in St Mary’s Kingswinford and left a will probate 26 Apr 1608. She must have been born in the 1530’s Continue reading →
Last updated on 1 March 2018 by JJ Morgan

Thomas Bissell

Thomas Bissell of Lyndon Green was born in about 1699 and left a will dated 28 Sep 1763 and executed in 1765. Continue reading →
Last updated on 19 January 2018 by JJ Morgan