Thomas Bissell

Thomas Bissell of Lyndon Green was born in about 1699 and left a will dated 28 Sep 1763 and executed in 1765.

He lived all his life in and around Yardley, East of Birmingham. He is described in most surviving documents as a yeoman but more latterly as a gentleman. He was clearly a farmer but his associates in a number of land deals can loosely be described as victuallers. The rapid industrialisation of the Midlands at this time opened the door for the commercialisation of food production and his younger son, Thomas Bissell is described as a butcher.

Thomas Bissell married Mary Larcy in Lichfield Cathedral on 21 Jun 1741. His marriage bond survives and shows that he professes to be 40 years of age at marriage. His wife Mary was only twenty. This points to the fact that his father was most likely George Bissell of Yardley who died and left a will of 1739 (held at Worcester and not yet seen). His only brother Joseph, mentioned in his will also appears to have married late, presumably similarly constrained in opportunity whilst their father was alive. This ties in with two baptisms in the St Edburgha’s register giving a baptism date of 26 Sep 1699 for Thomas and Mar 1701 for Joseph.

A large surviving selection of documents in the Birmingham archives show that the Leases and Indentures set up by Thomas in the 1750’s continued to involve his wife, children and nephews until at least 1782. This source also confirms Thomas and Joseph’s father was George Bissell of Yardley.

Shortly after Thomas’s death, his daughter Mary Bissell married Thomas Rhodes Showell, a licensed victualler, on 12 Nov 1764. They were the parents of Joseph Showell (bap 18 Aug 1769) who went on to run the Bull Inn in Price Street, Birmingham.

The St Edburgha, Yardley Parish Register records the burial of ‘Mr Thos Bissel of Lime Green’ on 8 May 1764.


  • Parish Register of St Edburgha, Yardley, Original facsimile (
  • Will of Thomas Bissell, Probate 13 Apr 1765, Lichfield Record Office
  • Will of Joseph Bissell, Probate 20 Dec 1777, PCC (Brother)
  • Diocese of Lichfield Marriage Allegations and Bonds 1636-1893
  • Birmingham Archives Service (Abstract only)
    • MS 3375/424861
    • MS 3375/571814
    • MS 3375/571815
    • MS 3375/571817
    • MS 3375/571818
    • MS 3375/571820
    • MS 3375/572438
    • MS 3375/572439
    • MS 3375/572445
    • MS 3375/572446
    • MS 3375/572451
    • MS 3375/572452
    • MS 3375/572453
    • MS 3375/572456