This is an account of a fifteen year quest into the mystery of the contents of Captain Bennets trunk. It all started when Michael was talking to the Essex historian Herbert Hope Lockwood in front of the Bennett monument in St Margaret's church, Barking.
"It's strange" said Bert "but no-one really knows anything about him, apart from the hearsay that Bennett (or his father) was one of Admiral Sir Clowdisley Shovell's captains and that he survived the Great Scillies Disaster of 1707 through sheer navigational skill".
Fifteen years and more than a bit of research later, He doesn't believe the hearsay,and can still only guess why Bennett's parents and then he himself ended their days in Barking, Essex, far from their native Dorset.
The tale, as it unfurls, suggests adeventure on the high seas, smuggling, money-laundering, and other dubious branches of a multi-generation business conducted by a group of Poole businessmen.
A year before Bert died, Michael promised Bert Lockwood He'd put all the material on Captain Bennett onto one file and deposit a copy where others might find it and add to it. So here it is.
Captain Bennett's Family|
Captain Bennett's Will
The Secrecy clause
The Newfoundland Trade and the 'Dorset Smugglers'
The Barking Fishing Smacks
Bennett within the City Gates
Authors conclusions to date
The Great Scillies Disaster of 1707
Captain Jumpers' Log
Sea-captains in the Barking Church Registers
Poole and its harbour
Bennett's Castle Lane
Captain Benett's RN Career|
Bennetts career gap
Captain Bennett's Royal Navy Ships
Captain Bennett's bank accounts
Captain Bennett's funeral, tomb, and monument
HM Hired Ship Coronation
Barking Vestry Minutes
Some mayors of Poole around Captain Bennett's time
Was owling worth the risk?
Owling in Captain Bennetts time
An index of the names in Captain Bennett's life
Poole Families with surnames from Captain Bennett's will
A list of Burgesses of Poole in 1690
The Great Forest in Essex
Some exents around Captain Bennett's time
John Bennett was made a Captain in England's Royal Navy on the First of May 1695 at the age of 25. He sailed to Virginia, Hamburg, Archangel in Russia, Cape Town and the West Indies eighty years before Nelson and he was an elected Burgess of Poole in Dorset. When he died in 1717 his will was long and generous to Cousins, to a Haberdasher in London and to the ancient Borough of Poole. But what was it in his iron trunk and scritoire that he wanted concealed from beyond the grave? Why, like his parents before him, did Captain Bennett decide to die in Barking, Essex and to have a splendid memorial in the parish church there, far from his native Poole? And, is the old Barking hearsay about him true?
There is still a short street in Poole, just off the town's waterfront, called Bennett's Alley and there are records of a Bennett family there as far back as the 1500s. The Poole Borough and Dorset County records show that John Bennett's father (son of Robert) married Mary Baker in Poole parish church on 27th July 1664. He was 28, she 27 - a fairly normal age for merchant class marriages then.
The Bennetts' first two children died in infancy. Their third was baptised John on 21 February 1670/1 and his brother Joseph on 20 November 1677. Their father was 'elected and sworne a Free Burgess of the Corporation of Poole on 23 December 1668' (paying a £5 fee) and his brothers Richard ('Mariner of Poole') on 2 April 1685 and Robert ('Merchant of Poole') on 25 January 1688.
However, John and Mary Bennett were living elsewhere by 1690. The Second Poll Rate list for the Borough of 1690 (Poole Doc.A17) contains the names of over 700 people living in Poole that year. Neither Captain Bennett nor his parents were listed anywhere on it, nor was Joseph, but it does show that their uncles, Robert Bennett & Richard Bennett were resident in Poole that year.
Captain Bennett himself was sworn an Out-Burgess of Poole on 17 July 1705 aged 35. Another John Bennett was sworn on 5 August 1719, two years after Captain John died - more than probably the youngest son of his late uncle Richard Bennett.
Despite the strong ties to Poole, John Bennett senior died on "8 May 1706 aged 70 years and 8 months" and his mother Mary on "9 January 1712" according to their floor-slab in St Margaret's Church, Barking, close to the north aisle altar. The Bennetts must have been well known there by then; but I have not yet found a trace of them in the ERO or Valence House Museum records, including Hearth Tax.
Captain Bennett was by 1716 a Royal Navy Captain with twenty one years' seniority. He had had a career of hard sailing rather than hard fighting and, four years after his last command, he knew he was dying. With no children who might inherit, he started to make a will and appears to have moved to Barking before he completed it - but where in Barking? He died on January 30th 1716/17 and was buried in Barking Churchyard on 6 February 1717. Abraham Edlin, City of London Haberdasher, was the appointed executor of his Will, which has one or two curious entries:
|Summary of Captain Bennett's Will (PROB 11 556)||£|
|Robert, eldest Son of my late Uncle Rich'd Bennett: *Note1 Note1: 2 tenements, Strand St Poole, for life; then to Robert's heirs.||10|
|Richard, second Son of my late Uncle Rich'd Bennett||300|
|John, youngest Son of my late Uncle Rich'd Bennett||500|
|Cousin Mary Edwards late Mary Linton a guinea only||1|
|The Borough of Poole where I was borne||300|
|Cousin Tho's Masters: S'th Sea Stock (+ pay A. Baker £4pa)||500|
|Godson Tho's Masters Jr (not 21): *Note2 Note2: Part-estate 'Grange', Dorset + its 2 Poole ground-rents. and the sum of||200|
|Abr'm Edlin of St Botolphs: *Note3, |
Note3: L/H properties Petticoat Lane, Aldgate; plus 4 Class Ticketts but Abraham Edlin to pay Aunt Anne Baker £8pa for life.gold watch, furniture and
|JB's Aunt Joane Baker, for mourning||10|
|Cousin Tho's Stevens + wife Hannah: half the 'Elizabeth Hoy' +||40|
|John Smith Son of Hn'h Stevens: best r'm furniture/Condition||100|
|John Thorp of Wapping, Apothecary, for mourning||10|
|Thomas Fleming of Loxford Gent (of Barking Vestry) mourning||10|
|Aunts Anne and Joane Baker: *Note4 Note4: JBs L/H messuage or tenement in Broad Street, Wapping||-|
|Captain George Lewin = Lewen of Poole, for mourning||21|
|Cousin Ambrose Weston + his wife for mourning||20|
|Mr John Lester of Poole for mourning||10|
|Mr William Parrett of London, Merchant, for mourning||10|
|Madam Fewtrell and her daughter for mourning||20|
|George Fewtrell son of Madam Fewtrell, for mourning||10|
|Robert Whitfield of London, Taylor, for mourning||20|
|Giles Griffith (of Barking Vestry) for mourning||10|
|JBs servant Arden Buloan 'forgiven' + a suit of clothes +||2|
|The 'poore of the parish where I happen to depart this life'||50|
|The 'poore of the parish where I happen to be buried'||50|
|Charge for his funeral + monument + 'grave with iron railes'||500|
|Mr Bryan Wheelock Steward to Earl Shaftesbury the sum of||110|
|Abraham Edlin: furniture/iron chest/Condition/'chariot+horses'|
|Cousin Mary Masters (wife of Thos) Trunk/scritoire/Condition||-|
|Mr Wheelock/Abraham Edlin: Note5, Note5: messuages, lands etc in/near Harbridge, Hants + residue of JBs South Sea shares, Bank of England shares, 'lottery ticketts called courses', all other lottery ticketts, my Annuity in the £40,000 surplus in the year 1708, all upon Trust to sell. to meet legacies/costs||-|
|Captain Cripeny of Barking ('Chas Crepigny', witness of will)||10|
|Rev Mr Connett (= Conant, Rector of Poole 1705-20) mourning||10|
|John Fawler, Commissioner of the Navy, for mourning||10|
|Rev Mr Middleton, Minister of Lindhurst, for mourning||10|
|Mrs Frances Lewis, widow, for mourning||10|
|JB's servants at his decease: half year's wages/suit of mourning|
|JB's Goddaughter, daughter of John Butts of Gosport, Brewer||10|
|Mrs Martha Williams, widow, for mourning||10|
|Friend John Godsalve of London, Gent, (see Names Index)||10|
|Widow Pike, tenant of JB's Strand Street Poole property||5|
|Mrs Jane Edlin fifty gns for mourning (see Names Index)||52|
|Mr Isaac Edlin brother to Abraham Edlin, for mourning||10|
|'Cousin George Cload' for mourning (see Names Index)||10|
|Cousin John Martin and his wife five pounds each for mourning||10|
|Cousin Joseph Pittman, Wapping (in Names Index) mourning||10|
|The poor of the Parish of Barking, Essex a further||10|
|The poor of the parish of Harbridge, Hampshire||10|
|Aunt Anne Baker: £12pa in annuities from Masters/Edlin||10|
|Towards Executors' costs||20|
1695 buying power was about 1/80th of today's ('Queens Treasures' TV Programme on 26 May 2002) so a £50 bequest for Mourning x 80 would have been worth some £4000 in 2002.
What was the £40,000 surplus in the year 1708?
I have not discovered (nor could Bert Lockwood or the National Maritime Museum guess) what "the £40,000 surplus in the year 1708" was. It was an enormous sum of money for those days. Could it have been the residue of the sum allocated by the Government to the widows and orphans of the Great Scillies Disaster of 1707? If so, why was Bennett entitled to an annuity in it? Was his brother Joseph Bennett lost in the disaster - or had their late uncle Robert advanced pay to sailors who were lost and he had written claims for a refund?
There is another mystery about the will. The trunks or items of furniture Captain Bennett left to his cousins John Bennett and Mary Masters, to John Smith son of Hannah Stevens and to Abraham Edlin, were all subject to secrecy clauses:
"I give and bequeath unto the said Abraham Edlin all the furniture in the Room called my Chamber together with the Chest of Drawers and the Iron Chest with all that is therein contained upon this Condition that he do not disclose or make known the Contents thereof or any part thereof to any person and in case he do make the same known contrary to this my desire my will and meaning is that he forfeits this my devise to him and in that case I give the same unto my Cousin Mary Masters"
What did this furniture contain that Bennett wanted to hide - or that one or more of his contemporaries wanted him to be seen to hide? Was it valuable, commercially sensitive or plain dangerous? Was it cash, valuables that had not yet been turned into cash that was not all his, or sensitive paperwork? And, why did he leave different items of furniture to different people but with the same odd condition? It can't all have been a red herring.
There is perhaps a first clue: the declaration in the will holding Abraham Edlin not liable for the many transactions that had passed between them in Bennett's lifetime. I think this was to enable Edlin to declare that he had always bought items from Captain Bennett in good faith as to their origins. Then one can see other clues.
By Captain Bennett's time, Poole was the leading port in England for ships carrying essential supplies to the colony of Newfoundland. They took dried cod-meat from Newfoundland on to the plantations of Virginia and the West Indies and then sugar, rum and tobacco back to England on a third leg of this triangle. The Masters family of Poole were well into this 'Newfoundland Trade'. So were some Bennetts: The Wessex & Newfoundland Society Newsletter of May 1897 said that Bennetts of Poole were at Bennett's Island, Bennett's Brook and Grand Bennett Island in 1695 and 1745. Which Bennetts?
When the restored but cash-short Stuart kings put a heavy Customs Duty on tobacco (and similar sea-borne comforts) the risk-reward ratio of owling (which we now call smuggling) was transformed. The ship-owning Poole merchants and their wide network of retainers, contacts and customers readily turned their hands and ships to it.
In his book, 'Dorset Smugglers', published in 1983 and based on the Culliford Report of 1682, the Bournemouth heritage journalist Roger Guttridge showed how Poole was Dorset's biggest smuggling port in Captain Bennett's time and for decades afterwards. Wine, brandy, rum, tea, coffee, cocoa beans, rolls of cloth, spices, vinegar, whalebone, hats, playing cards, paper and even logwood were brought into Poole and run inland free of duty under the noses of corrupt customs officials.
Thomas Culliford was the customs official who named and shamed the merchants of Poole who were not paying duty. None of the surnames he recorded in other Dorset ports appeared in Bennett's will, but many of his legatees seem to have been the next generation of the men fingered by Thomas Culliford thirty four years earlier: notably Lewin, Bennett, Stevens, Martin, Lewis, Weston.
|Culliford 1682||Captain Bennett's will 1716|
|George Lewin |
|'Captain George Lewin of Poole'|
Mayor of Poole 1706-1708, d.1718
|Robert Bennett, Owned the Robert , Tobacco runner||'My late uncle Robert Bennett' Elected Mayor but died before sworn. Capt Bennett his Administrator in 1709|
|Richard Stevens Master of the Robert||Richard Stevens not in Bennett's will but 'Cousin Thomas Stevens' was|
|Thomas Bennett Dragger boat owner||Did Bennett have an Uncle Thomas, born when Poole records were lost?|
|John Martin, Owned the Mary Maria||'My cousin John Martin' in the will|
|William Lewis||'Mrs Francis Lewis, widow' in the will.|
|'Pike's ship from Virginia' Tobacco runner||'The Widow Pike' in the will William Pike was Mayor of Poole 1693|
|John Weston Dragger boat owner||'Ambrose Weston' had been apprentice to Mr John Weston London merchantA Mr John Weston died Poole 1719|
Dragger boats were local oyster-bed dredgers that their owners used to carry contraband to and from offshore ships.
Culliford said Robert Bennett's ship the Robert could carry 120 hogsheads (a cask of 54 gallons capacity) of Virginia tobacco comfortably. He left no formal will and in 1709 his Administrator was his eldest nephew Captain John Bennett. He would have kept Robert's property in the Bennett family, but what happened to Robert's business and the ocean-crossing Robert?
Then, surprise! The same family names from Culliford's Poole appeared in the Barking Parish registers (but not of Dagenham or East Ham) - Bennett, Baker, Martin, Masters, Furzer, Rogers, Pike, Stevens, Lewen, Durell, Cload, Lester, Weston and Pelly. This coincidence lasted from the 1550s until well into the 1700s. Why? There is something strange going on here.
Unlike Poole, Barking was not a Borough with a Royal Charter and elected Burgesses, but its parish was one of the largest in Stuart England. It ran east from the River Roding to Dagenham, north from the Thames tideway through Ilford to the Barking side of the Great Forest and on up to the Chigwell boundary.
Barking Town had a fine parish church and Fire Bell Gate (the sole survivors of its great abbey) a market hall, manor houses, gentry, farms, market gardens, grazing meadows, reed beds for basket making and thatching, leather tanners, supplies of wood and charcoal from the nearby Forest - and access to the tidal Thames across Barking Town Quay. The Barking Parish Vestry maintained and controlled this from its meeting room above the market hall. Coastal hoys and the biggest Thames barges could load and unload cargoes there with ease. Ocean-going sailing ships could anchor in the Thames only a short row down the River Roding. The King's Arsenal and Woolwich Dockyard were just up the Thames from Barking Creek and Deptford Royal Dockyard was another mile upstream past the brand new Royal Naval Hospital at Greenwich.
But there was a further dimension to Barking. It was also London's biggest source of fish. Large fishing smacks from Barking spent long periods out in the North Sea fishing grounds, returning to Barking Creek to transfer their fish to smaller boats for the eight-mile journey upstream to London Bridge and Billingsgate fish-market.
Daniel Defoe wrote: 'These fishing-smacks are very useful vessels to the public upon many occasions; as particularly, in time of war they are used as press-smacks, running to all the northern and western coasts to pick up seamen to man the navy, when any expedition is at hand that requires a sudden equipment; at other times, being excellent sailors, they are tenders to particular men of war; and on an expedition they have been made use of as machines for the blowing up of fortified ports and havens; as at Calais, St. Malo, and other places' (1722)
The Town Quay end of Barking was full of fishermen, shipwrights, sawyers, riggers, mast-makers, sail-makers, ships chandlers, water keg makers, pork cask makers, net-makers, knitters, waterproof clothing and boot makers, ships biscuits bakers, men with horses and carts, inns and more.
So, Barking was a productive location for a wide range of skills; and a convenient place from which gentlemen, sea captains, merchants and traders could go to London by pony and trap and be back with their families the same day.
And, in his will, Captain Bennett remembered three of the men from the Parish Vestry that ran Barking parish and Barking Town Quay.
Thirty miles to the east of Barking were the small ports of the Essex coast. Trade to and from the Low Countries streamed through them. Fish from them went up to London by horse and cart. Illicit trade streamed into and out of the many Essex tidal creeks. Tiptree Common in mid-Essex was its major clearing-house. Was it a coincidence that John Godsalve of Baddow, a Bennett legatee, had lands at Tillingham, Dengie and Canvey? See Map of Owlers' Essex
John Bennett's place of residence before he moved to Barking and when he was not on board ship is a big gap in this research; as is the date that his parents moved to Barking? Did his parents first live within the City of London walls - and later on at the leasehold properties in Petticoat Lane and Broad Street Wapping, before moving to Barking? For instance in 1693-4 an Abraham Edlin, a Thomas Masters and a Captain Bennett (i.e. before Bennett Junior's RN commission) were paying the four shillings in the pound City rate, as was a Jane Edling - possibly the Mrs Jane Edlin that Bennett left cash to for mourning.
I believe that the Bennett family were merchants with relatives and reliable friends ('Cousins') in both Barking and Poole who had for at least three generations run smuggled goods into Dorset and London from their own ships and coastal vessels. It needed a competent landside organisation and paperwork in Poole and the London area to do this profitably. Bennett mentions his counting house, his Petticoat Lane leasehold and the Broad Street Wapping property in his will, but his parents could equally have run their end of the family business from Barking. I believe Abraham Edlin was the Bennetts' principal London agent. Others probably ventured money with them. Indeed, well after Captain Bennett (and, I think, Mary Masters) had died, a Sir Thomas Masters took Abraham Edlin to court claiming he had not distributed full value to the legatees. The National Archive have Edlin's response that he had done so. But he did go on a bit!
As his father's generation died, Captain John Bennett RN became the family and business elder. When he himself was terminally ill, he split his counting-house paperwork geographically (local lists of sums due and owing, suppliers, valued customers and so on) put it in locked pieces of furniture and left this and some of his real estate to his blood-cousins and Edlin. His cash and other realisable assets went to Abraham Edlin to cover expenses, but I think (and so must have Thomas Masters) that he fixed it so his youngest cousin John could buy his Harbridge estate cheaply - but I may be wrong!
The story persists in Barking that Captain Bennett was one of Admiral Shovell's captains at the capture of Gibraltar in 1704 and that he was also in Shovell's squadron during their fateful return from the Mediterranean in October 1707. It is not clear if this meant Captain John Bennett or his father, Captain Bennett Senior. (The title 'Captain' did not mean he was Royal Navy. It was the proper title for a man who commanded a proper ship)
I have looked hard for but not yet found a Captain Bennett at the Capture of Gibraltar in 1704 or near the Great Scillies Disaster in 1707 (the records in both cases being quite good) let alone of a Captain Bennett 'warning that Shovell's squadron was about to run onto the Western Rocks off the Scillies'.
However, the ship Bennett commanded in 1712, HMS Lenox, did indeed take part in the capture of Gibraltar in 1704 and she was again in Admiral Shovell's squadron on the fateful 22nd October 1707. Perhaps the hearsay comes from this. In both cases Lenox was under the command of Sir William Jumper, the most successful cruiser captain of his generation.
I have seen Captain Jumper's log for 1.1.1706-22.1.1707/8 at the National Archive ref: ADM51/30. For 22/23 October 1707 he wrote:
"22. Small winds N'rly ye former part but at Noone hard gales at SWBS and thick weather. At 11: y morning parted w y Fleet and bent good sailes home near ye length of Scilly w the Valeur + Phoenix."
The three ships had detached to go to Falmouth by prior arrangement between Jumper and Shovell. There was no sign in the log for the three days that Jumper (or his ship's Sailing Master) had attended an Admiral's conference or foreseen disaster.
"23. Fresh gales from noon yesterday at SSW but Clear till 2 (a.m.) steering NEBN then hazy and wett and the Gale freshing we altered our Course to E-ward .lay up to sound but no ground at 3 (a.m.)"
Then, seven hours of darkness after the unseen catastrophe to their east, the three ships ran into the shallows south and west of the Scillies island of Samson, north of Annet and St Agnes. Lenox and Valeur somehow got through into the deeper water of Broad Sound, but despite her crew's efforts, Phoenix struck the edge of a rock, sprang a leak, shipped more water from a breaker and ran onto sand between Sansom and Bryher at half tide. Captain Sansom did not manage to float her off into the pool of New Grimsby harbour until 25th October. You can see where if you visit Tresco gardens.
Two well-researched works analyse the disaster. Sir Clowdisley Shovell's Disaster by Richard Larn and Peter McBride (60 pages) was published by Historic Maritime Series. Simon Harris's 430 page biography Sir Cloudesley Shovell was published in 2001 by Spellmount.
The loss of Association, Eagle, Romney and Firebrand and nearly 2000 lives including that of Admiral Shovell, on the 22nd October 1707, hugely shocked England, led eventually to Harrison's ship-saving chronometer and, in 1996, to Dava Sobel's book Longitude.
Captains Banaster, Boys, Brooks, Collett, Field, Furzer, Hancock, Harward = Hayward, Hawk, Hubbard (3 generations), Pelly, Rogers and Shepherd are all mentioned in the Barking Church registers of Captain Bennett's time and are in the names index here.
Poole harbour is the biggest natural sea-haven in England. As a town, Poole is one of the oldest boroughs in England. It was part of the medieval Manor of Canford. Because English kings needed to count on the town's loyalty whenever French ships threatened (which was often) Poole enjoyed a number of ancient legal liberties - 'the Liberty of Allsister and the parish of St James'.
The adjoining hamlets of Parkstone, Longfleet, Hickford and North Haven were anciently called the out-parish of Poole. Parkstone was in the tithing of Kinson in the Parish of Canford, five miles away, but its tithes were payable to the rectors of Poole.
There is a Poole Port Book in the National Archive: not yet seen.
An old Barking area name, Bennett's Castle Lane is a northward turning off Longbridge Road, east of the 1930s Robin Hood Pub (demolished 2006), between Barking and Becontree Heath.
Bert Lockwood told me: 'The Lane got its name well before 1700 and I see no connection with Captain Bennett. The will of Thomas Haryett in 1472 mentioned "a Messuage called le Castell" and I agree with John O'Leary (the Dagenham historian) that it was probably a moated and fortified homestead. My card index has a Nicholas Bennett buying Castle Farm House at the junction of Longbridge Road and Castle Lane (as it then was) from Thomas Goodman & Henry Humfrey somewhere between 1609 and 1616. 41 acres of wood on the farm were felled in 1666. Nicholas Bennett and Susan Mason set up house there after they married in 1717. He then had the interior panelling painted. Photos of it taken in 1937 survive but, alas, Bennett's Castle Farm House does not.
Bennett's Castle Farm House had passed to William Bennett by 1669 and then to his widow Anne Bennett who was there in 1679-80. Thomas Bennett, a market gardener (who lived in Tanner Street Barking) held one of the farm's fields. In 1721 a John Bennett, Draper of London, was admitted to the copyhold of the farm, which his widow Elizabeth inherited in 1733 in trust for their son William.
Bennett's Castle House was built 700 yards to the north of the Farm House early in the 1880s. Photos of it show that the eaves of one wing were castellated. Its probable builder, William Temple, was a member of the Romford Board of Guardians and he died there in 1902. There is no evidence of an earlier house on its site and it was demolished in 1930 by the London County Council to make way for the huge Becontree Estate.'
I am grateful for the help and information I have had from the Borough of Poole Local Studies Centre, the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham's Valence House, the National Maritime Museum Library, the Family Records Centre, Mr Roger Guttridge, the Essex Record Office, the Dorset Records Office, the Hampshire Records Office, the National Archive, Mrs Dorothy Lockwood, the Courtauld Library, the Hoare & Company archivist, the Bank of England archivists and the Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust. In particular, I value and miss the years of encouragement I had from the late Herbert Hope Lockwood, who prompted all this.
|1.||Photo of the Bennett memorial in Barking Church|
|2.||Photo of Captain Bennett's tomb in Barking Churchyard|
|3.||C19th photo of Barking Church from the Town Quay|
|4.||Photo of St Margaret's Barking in November 2006|
|5.||Summary notes on the memorial|
|6.||Summary of Bennett's naval career and ships|
|7.||Close-up of warship bows and stern on the monument|
|8.||Old photo of Poole waterfront|
|9.||Photo of a Poole merchant house from Bennett's time|
|10.||Photo of the 'Bennett's Alley' street name today|
Bennett was already the First Lieutenant of the Hired Ship HMS Coronation when he was made her Captain (and re-entered on the pay-book) on 1st May 1695. England was at war with France again and it was not unusual for the RN of the time to hire armed privateers from the merchants, high-risk investors and chancers who were licenced to operate them. But who owned it in the first place? Fifty gun ships and their crew didn't come cheap.
A Robert Bennett showed up the day before John Bennett became its Captain to collect the pay-ticket of his 'brother Thomas Bennett' and of one of another seaman. Such 'ticketts' were redeemable for cash at the Navy Pay Office. Was this the Captain's Uncle Robert? The Thomas in question had been Captain Bennett's First Lt.
Coronation paid off at the end of 1695 and her Pay Book was signed off by J. Bennett, Jno Lodge and J Smith the Purser. Was he John Smith's father?
National Archive 2006 shows Bennett then served on another ship under another Captain - minimum details. To follow. Commissions did not usually run into the following year and Captain Bennett does not then appear to have been re-employed by the Navy until 1702 - a gap of over five years. What did he do in the interim? It was not unusual for Captains to serve as First Lieutenants on other RN ships if not fully in favour or until it was their turn for acommand again. Or, did he go private again and continue with Coronation?
King William's war with the French ended with the Treaty of Rijswijk in September 1697 and a great reduction in the strength of the Royal Navy. I have not yet checked to see if Captain Bennett was on the Half-Pay list. Nor have I yet looked closely enough to see if Bennett came up through the ranks on other ships before his time on Coronation. His next RN commission did not come until the start of the War of the Spanish Succession in 1702 under Queen Anne, the last Stuart monarch.
Peace was signed in 1712/13 and lasted until after Bennett's death. His last RN ship was HMS Lenox in 1712. The slab on top of his altar tomb in Barking churchyard says so. See photo.
I have done little detailed research on each commission but, generally, the records I've seen suggest that Bennett was given a commission every other year from 1702. How did he earn a living in the gap years - was he perhaps on other RN ships as a First Lieutenant below a more senior Captain (by no means uncommon) or was he serving on a merchant vessel belonging to Coronation's owners, or was he otherwise engaged?
|HMS Coronation, 52 guns||1695||Virginia & North Sea|
|Coronation hired 1689-1695. Then where did she and perhaps Bennett go? National Archive Ref: ADM 33/178 Pay Book, Coronation 1694-1696|
|HMS Dispatch, 2 guns (Brigantine)||1702||Channel|
|In 1699 Dispatch (Captain J Smith) was in the Irish Sea looking for owlers!|
|HMS Sun Prize, 22 guns||1704||Channel|
|HMS Oxford, 54 guns||1706||To St Helena|
|HMS Tilbury, 54 guns||1708||To Archangel|
|HMS Dreadnought, 60 guns||1709||To Hamburg|
|HMS Firme, 70 guns||1711||Medway guardship|
|HMS Lenox, 70 guns||1712||To The Cape|
|Lenox was 151'6" long, 40' beam and 1089 tons; major refit in 1701 Sailing Master in 1712 was George Hill, Master's Mate Thomas Stevens.|
|National Archive Ref:||ADM 51/4238||Captain's log, includes Lenox 1707|
|ADM 52/206||Masters' Logs, Lenox 1707 and 1712|
|ADM 33/270||Pay Book, Lenox 1705-1710|
|ADM 33/287||Pay Book, Lenox 1711-1712|
I also wonder if these were almost two separate careers, with Bennett rediscovered or remembered at the outbreak of the War of the Spanish Succession and getting a larger ship every two years, with Lenox the last and the most famous.
I have not read through the Captain's logs for all these commissions. Seen so far and the notes Bennett made himself were minimal. One will need to visit the National Archive and find the Master's log for each ship and perhaps the log of the Admiral in command in the hope of finding exactly what they were doing in each case. Books by W L Clowes, N A M Rodger and the Byng Journals are silent on him.
When Bennett took Lenox to St Helena and The Cape in 1712 he was 42 and the ten years war with France was coming to an end. He does not appear to have been a scarred fighting captain from the battle fleet but a seasoned escort commander and navigator. To be given Lenox was either a compliment to these latter skills, or a personal favour from someone above, for Lenox was a famous name. For 6 years she had been commanded by the most successful cruiser captain of his generation, William Jumper. See Names Index.
Capt Bennett did not stay in the shadows. He opened a Bank of England account (Ref C98/2512) on 6 November 1694, depositing £300 - closing it the next day! He then opened an account there (Ref C98/2514) on 9 March 1695 with £108.1.6d, closing it on 21.1.1696 when it held only 4 shillings. He held a shareholder account there from 1713 (£500 purchased) until closed by his executor (£500 sale) in 1718. He also held a current account at Hoare and Company in the Strand. Coutts Bank confirmed he did not have one with them.
As required by the will, Captain Bennet's executor, Abraham Edlin, spent between £250 and £500 on the funeral, an altar tomb ("with iron railes") in Barking churchyard and on a monument inside St Margaret's church - a very large sum for those days! It would have bought a couple of decent houses at least.
The Bennett monument is on the north aisle wall, near his parents floor-slab, but used to be just to the right of the main porch door. As Bennett faces right from this, he would have made an impression on each congregation leaving the church.
His altar tomb is in a direct line and directly aligned with the Curfew Tower (Listed Grade One*) entrance to the churchyard. As the tomb is in white stone, arrivals still can't miss it.
My edited correspondence with the Courtauld Library about the two monuments and their probable mason, Thomas Stayner, follows.
Bennett's parents' floor-slab is near the north aisle altar. Were they well known or generous to the Vestry to have ended up there?
by Mr H H Dawson FRIBA
'Few parish churches are fortunate in possessing so many and beautiful Monuments as are to be found in Barking Church. Of these, a few are Elizabethan and the majority are of the Queen Anne and Georgian periods and show Renaissance Monuments at their best'
The Bennet Monument is in memory of Captain John Bennet Senior, Mary his wife and Captain John Bennet their son. This fine Monument is the work of the sculptor Thomas Green of Camberwell and is most typical of his work. (but see later - MW) It is noteworthy for beauty of design, refinement of architectural detail and fine sculpture.
At the bottom left side is a Sideral Globe of the Stars. Right side - Mercator's Globe Projection. Centre - Quadrant and Projector, Gun, Scabbard and Winged Scull.
The central feature is a bust of Captain John Bennet wearing a wig of the period. It will be noticed (that) in his right hand is the hilt of a sword but the blade is missing as also a finger of his left hand. He did not lose them in the wars - he lost them in Church. I do not wish you to think there is any danger in going to Church, but rather that those who do go should not be careless.
On either side is a beautifully sculptured bas-relief of a two decker three masted square rigged Ship with all sails set and close hauled on the starboard tack. The Captains pennant on the foremast means she is under commission of the Captain to carry out some orders independently of a fleet or Admiral. He has direct orders from the Crown to do something with his ship.
White Ensign at the stern. Union Jack on the bow. Stern Galleries and Captain's and Officers Quarters - probably the last of such.
The figurehead is a lion rampant. The Spritsail shewn is probably one of the last. Bowsprit at an angle of 45* - probably the last. Top gallant sail, topsail and foresail. Stern portion - Topsail on the yard and on the spinnacker boom a spinnacker.
According to the Admiralty records, and his own logs, this ship is the Coronation, a frigate of 56 guns - presumably a Privateer.
She was commissioned by the Government 4 times (first in 1689) and joined a British Fleet of 7 Men of War and engaged the French Fleet of 17 ships and 3 fireships off the Island of Dominica (one of the Windward Islands N W of Barbadoes in the Carribean. After fighting an engagement lasting six hours, the British ran for it back to Barbadoes after sinking 3 but losing no ships themselves. Coronation was discharged in 1689.
She was hired again in 1691-2 with orders to destroy a Fort in the Island of Dominica. She was ordered to impress galleys - to use them for landing parties- she made a swift trip there, reduced the Fort and brought back the French garrison as prisoners.
She was under 3 other Captains. In 1694 she was home in the Thames, and again hired by the Navy and John Bennet given commission as Captain. She was fully refitted and commissioned to convoy ships to Barbadoes and joined the West Indian Fleet under Sir Ralph Delavall Vice Admiral of the Blue.
Coronation carried a crew of 197 men in 1695 of which there is a record, the most interesting being -
|John Tennant||Carpenters Mate|
"To the Pious Memory of Captain John Bennet Senior late of Poole in the County of Dorset who died 8th May 1706 Aged 70 And of Mary his Wife who deceased 9th January 1711 Aged 74 Both lying hereunder interred - Captain John Bennet their only Son who died 30th January 1716 aged 46 and lyeth in a Vault under an Altar Tomb in the Church Yard Ordered by his Will this Monument to be erected which was accordingly performed (by Abraham Edlin Gent his acting Executor) - He bequeathed to the Poor of this Parish £100 distributed among them by his aforesaid Executor As also £10 more to be disposed of in like manner by the hands of the Church Wardens - To the Corporation of Poole the place of his Nativity £100 for the use of the Poor there And £10 to the Poor of Harbridge in Hantshire - All paid by his said Executor"
The monument is surmounted by a trophy of Arms and the Family Arms. It will be noticed that the Executor put his own name on the Monument and states he has discharged his financial trust.
Mr Dawson noticed the curious condition about non-disclosure of what his legatees might find in the Scritoire, chest of drawers, iron chest and great trunk upon pain of forfeiture and, later on, that "they shall not be liable for anything they shall find in the several rooms by me given to them" but he made no further comment on this.
The Monument in the Church was to be placed on the North side as near to the place where his Father and Mother were buried at a cost of not less than £150 and not more than £250. The Tomb in the Churchyard which was to be encompassed with iron rails was not to exceed £500 including the whole cost of his funeral.
(Mr Dawson's firm, Dawson & Allardyce architects, designed many of the schools built in south Essex in the 1930s)
National Maritime Museum opinion on the ship carving in 1997 From Mr Iain MacKenzie ref H96 5696
'The ship carving on John Bennett's memorial appears to show a Fourth Rate of 50-54 guns, a two-decker, of the period around the turn of the 17th/18th Centuries. As such it could be the hired 50-gun ship Coronation. However, Bennett also commanded Oxford, Tilbury and Dreadnought, all two-decked Fourth Rates, and equally good candidates to be the model for the memorial carving.
The fact that the Ensign shows a Union flag in the upper canton signifies a date post-1707 and thus rather rules out the Coronation. HMS Lenox was a 70-gun ship, rather larger than the ship depicted, and carried a roundhouse and two full tiers of stern and quarter windows.
I would take slight issue with Mr H H Dawson's statements about the carving. The matter of the commissioning pendant is a bit out; the pendant is merely an indication that the vessel is a warship in commission. I'm not sure how he can know the ensign must be a White Ensign - it could with equal legitimacy be Red or Blue - but the Union Jack at the bowsprit end is another confirmation of a post-1707 dating. The lion figurehead was standard for warships of the rate and period.
I'm not quite sure what Mr Dawson can have meant by his statement that the spritsail and bowsprit were nearly the last of their type. The spritsail topsail, set on a vertical spritsail topmast at the end of the bowsprit, was disappearing from use about the date of the carving; indeed it is not evident in the carving. The spritsail is furled and the yard triced up, as was the practice on this point of sail. The fore and aft sail on the mizzen is properly a lateen mizzen, not a spinnaker.
These quibbles aside, Mr Dawson obviously did some good research on the career of the Coronation, evidently in Admiralty records at the Public Record Office, and he gathered some useful information about this hired ship which is not listed in J J Colledge's Ships of the Royal Navy (London: Greenhill, 1987) or David Lyon's Sailing Navy List (London: Conway Maritime Press, 1994), our two mainstays. She is, however, included in R C Anderson's Lists of Men-of-War 1650-1700 (London: Society for Nautical Research, 1966) and I enclose the relevant page - the information contained therein is pretty minimal.
In the absence of anything of a documentary nature to confirm the identity of the ship in the carving - what a handsome monument, by the way - we can only repeat that it shows a Fourth Rate of circa.1700. By association with John Bennett, it may represent Coronation, Oxford, Tilbury or Dreadnought.
Admiralty Records at the Public Record Office at Kew may give the information about the ownership of the Coronation, whether this information could show a connection of patronage is doubtful.
I have passed your photographs on to our Antiquities Section, for inclusion with their file on maritime memorials".
For reasons of the historical novel I'm trying to finish, I took another (but this time very close) look at the Bennett memorial and particularly its ship carving in November 2006. I had not previously realised how extraordinarily detailed it was - there are even the tiny hatted figures of the ship's commander and the sailing master on the poop deck, with one of them using a big speaking trumpet to holler at a man up in the rigging. The rigging is truly detailed, the sail details are fine and accurate, the lee shrouds are slack, the weather gun-ports open. You won't find all that in any painting or ship model.
There was no reference to Bennett's memorial in the Barking Vestry minutes of 1717, but there were some names (Churchwardens) from Bennett's will who signed the Vestry Minutes. Not all years are covered by the surviving Minutes: there are gaps. All are as spelt.
|21.10.1700||Thomas Bennett and Wm Salsbury.|
|1702 /1703||Thomas Fleming, Wm Salsbury, John Stevens (Barking ward) + Thomas Bennett|
|00.00.1715||Thomas Fleming, (also the Parish Constable)|
|00.00.1716||Thos Bennett, C Crepigny, Thos Pittman|
|00.00.1718||Minuted: T Pittman to pay T Bennett £40 for 1715|
|1718/ 1721||Thos Pittman, Thos Bennett and Thos Fleming|
|00.00.1721||A workhouse agreed to by the Justices|
|1690||Henry Jubber||1707||George Lewen|
|1691||Shadrach Beall||1708||George Lewen|
|1692||Moses Durell||1709||William Skutt**|
|1693||William Pike||1710||Samuel Weston|
|1694||Thomas Smith||1711||Samuel Weston|
|1696||Thomas Hide||1713||John Jennings|
|1695||Peter Hiley||1712||William Cock|
|1696||Thomas Hide||1713||John Jennings|
|1697||William Phippard||1714||James Wise|
|1698||Joseph Wadham||1715||William Skinner|
|1699||John Carter||1716||John Lester|
|1700||William Williams||1717||Benjamin Skutt|
|1701||Dennis Smith||1718||Benjamin Skutt|
|1702||William Bremble||1719||William Weston|
|1703||William Phippard||1720||Frances Lester|
|1704||William Phippard||1721||William Cleeves|
|1705||John Carter||1722||Timothy Spurrier|
|1706||George Lewen||1723||Richard Weston|
then no Bennett Will surnames until a generation later:
Owling played a major part in everyday life in Captain Bennett's England. At times, it accounted for a quarter of England's overseas trade (in and out) and it employed tens of thousands.
The effect of Customs duty on imported goods was often to double their retail price. The higher the tax, the greater was the incentive to buy from an owler - and the greater the value of owlers' trade.
It was not just English imports that were affected. Between 1662 and 1698 the dead of any parish had to be 'in wool' and it was a capital offence to export it, other than from designated ports. But English wool was much in demand abroad, especially in Royalist France and, as its scarcity grew, so did owlers' rewards.
It is reckoned that at the beginning of the eighteenth century owlers were taking well over 100,000 bales of wool a year to France from Kent, Sussex, Hampshire and Dorset. Much of this trade was arranged between Huguenot merchants in England with relatives on the other side of the Channel - Huguenots who had not yet been forced abroad by King Louis XIV's measures against Protestants.
By the time of Captain Bennett's death, the burden of import duties had shifted and a broad range of buyers in England wanted (and got) affordable tea, coffee, tobacco, spirits and other items. This spread owling earnings around too - skilled boat-handlers were needed to get hundreds of waterproofed barrels or packets ashore from a waiting ship. Horses and carts were needed to move it all inland and their part-time handlers could earn a week's money in one night's run, if their luck held. Nearly all were illiterate.
Full-time owlers were much fewer in number and kept themselves at arms length from these runs. They included the organizing merchants and specialist buyers who went out and bought to order the quality wines, French fashions, best glass, Dutch china, woven silk and fine paper - even jewellery - demanded.
Hidden behind the organizers' networks were the men who financed the whole enterprise. These were the hard-nosed people who had to lay out the modern equivalent of over £1m to launch a run.
Inevitably, middlemen wholesalers entered the scene: their offshore ships and storehouses on the Channel Islands and Scillies reduced English merchants' exposure and owlers' time at sea. They bought contraband from other nationals and sold it on at a profit. A Hovering Act was passed by Parliament to try and stop this trade.
To further cut their losses, the Customs men appointed a hundred Riding Officers to try and catch owlers on the easiest shorelines. They also brought in twenty fast Revenue Cutters to patrol the shoreline facing the Continent. They captured contraband and burnt shoreboats and sawed dragger boats in half: but the tide of contraband kept flowing.
As the eighteenth century progressed, the English took to drinking tea in majestic volumes and smoking more Virginia tobacco and the owlers were hard put to keep up with demand. Indeed, the French authorities encouraged tea drinking in France to add to owlers' incentives and keep French produce flowing into England; and keep the English government starved of revenue.
Poole Harbour and Christchurch Bay were important in this trade. And so were the tidal creeks and reed-lined marshes of Essex.
Circa 1690, Gregory King devised a rule of thumb for assessing England's imports and exports. He was England's first statistician and has an entry in the Dictionary of National Biography.
Pilot cutters were very conveniently placed to unload small quantities of contraband from incoming ships and perhaps Trinity House pilots did well out of the trade. But, larger boats were needed to keep pace with the volume of supply and demand.
I've tried to assemble the Poole cousin families in Captain Bennett's will, using the St James's Poole parish registers at the Dorset Record Office. I've also included some captains' surnames common to Poole and Barking. However, I skipped over quite a few Bakers early on. Another visit needed.
DRO Docs: PE/PL: RE/1B + Microfilm: MIC/R/632
Period beginning 1538 original docs damaged badly
Period 1600-1631 handwriting almost illegible on film
|Not found||Edmund Baker and Mary his Wife|
Parents of Mary-1622
|Not found|| William Baker and -- his Wife|
Parents of John-1623
|Not found|| Ambrose Bennett and Ann his Wife|
Parents of Elizabeth-1625, Ambrose-1628, Edward-1630, Thomas-1633
|Not found|| Thomas Baker and Mary his Wife|
Parents of Roger-1629
|Not found|| James Baker and Tara his Wife|
Parents of Tara-1634
|Not found|| John Weston and Dorothie his Wife|
Parents of John-1634
|Not found|| Robert Bennett and Mary his Wife (JB's grandparents)|
Parents of John-1635, Mary-1638, Peter-1653
|Not found|| Royer Martin and Mary his Wife|
Parents of Deberah-1636
|Not found|| Rogyer Baker and Anne his Wife (JB's grandparents?)|
Parents of Mary-1637 - right date. Joan and Anne Baker not found
|Not found|| James Benett and Eloner his Wife|
Parents of James-1637, John-1640
|Not found|| Richard Bennett and Eleanor his Wife|
Parents of Mary-1638
|Then illegibles or Baptism registers damaged up to 1653|
| Edward Pelly and Eleanor his Wife|
Parents of Edward, Joane, Susannah - all 1653
|29.01.1640/1||Peter Bennett & Mary Bearchfield|
|27.04.1641||Thomas Pelly & Susan Carthridge|
Andrew Cload & Phillippa -
James Cload & Frances -
|12.04.1643/4||Christopher Lester & Alice Lawes|
|Not found||Richard Stevens and Magdalen (d1654) his Wife|
|09.07.1654||Richard Stevens & Mary Clench|
|07.09.1654||Sidrach Lester & Sarah Baker|
|Not found||Peter Bennett and Elizabeth his Wife|
Parents of Richard, Susanna both 1654
|Not found||Thomas Rogers and Anna his Wife|
Parents of Anna-1654
|Not found||Simon Stevens and Frances his Wife|
Parents of Mary-1654
|A number of Cload and Pelly baps not logged 1655-1660 - sorry!|
|05.10.1658||William Baker and Mellicent _______(She d.1697)|
Parents of Mellison-1664, Mary-1668, Mary-1671 (=Mary Masters?)
|03.1658/9||Walter Baker & Maudlin Wild|
Parents of Mellison-1664, Elizabeth-1665, Susanna-1668, Elizabeth-1671, John-1674
|Not Found||Henry Martin and Mary his Wife|
|Not found||Edward Martin and Elizabeth his wife|
Parents of Anna-1661
|14.11.1660||John Baker & Katherine Dibbs|
|14.01.1660/1||William Baker & Argent Didham
Parents of Eleanor-1667, Joseph-1668, Benjamin-1670, Elizabeth-1672,
|19.05.1662||George Cartridge & Mary Bennet|
|11.11.1662||Anthony Smith & ?Agnes Bennet/Dennet|
|02.02.1663/?||Henry Jubber & Rebekah Baker|
|19.04.1663||Christopher Bennet & Amy Larry|
Parents of John-1664, Christopher-1669, Ann-1674, Mary-1677, Robert-1680
|09.05.1663||George Corbidge & Mary Bennet|
|27.07.1664||John Bennett & Mary Baker|
Parents of John-1666-68, Mary-1667-68,
|23.02.1664/||John Christian & Mary Bennett|
|Not found||Henry Weston and Margaret his Wife|
Parents of Margaret-1665
|02.10.1665||John Pittman & Mary Baker|
Parents of Joseph-1672
|Not found||Edward Pelly and Elenor his Wife|
Parents of Peter, Edward, Josias- all baptised 1666
|Not found||John Weston and Dorothy his Wife|
Parents of Ambrose-1666
|27.08.1666||Christopher Bennett & Warberah Christian|
Parents of John-1668
|Not found||Thomas Cloade and Edite his Wife|
Parents of Thomas-1668
|(Few marriages listed 1668-73, curate scarcely literate. Did more go un-registered?)|
|Not found||John Lester and Mary his Wife|
Parents of Mary-1674, William-1682
|Not found||Mr George Lewin and Elizabeth his wife|
Parents of George-1674-5,
|22.09.1673||John Rogis/Rogers & Alese Baker (wid?)|
|02.10.1673||John Rogers & Alese Baker|
|02.03.1673/4||Alexander Bennett/Dennett & Elizabeth ?|
|Not found||Philip Smith and Elizabeth his Wife|
Parents of Hannah-1676
|17.01.1675/6||Richard Lemington & Honer Baker|
|06.02.1676/7||Anthony Bennett & Elizabeth Lininton|
Parents of Elizabeth-1677, Anthony-1680
|13.12.1676||Richard Bennett & Elizabeth Wiat (She d1706)|
Parents of Peter-1677, Richard-1680-83, John-1682-84, Miles-1684, Elizabeth-, Robert-1687, Richard-1690, Elizabeth-1692, ?John-1693
|Not found||Peter Bennett and Ann his Wife|
Parents of Sarah-1677-77
|15.09.1677||Alexander Martin of Kingswood parish & Hester ?Myles|
Parents of Mary-1680
|23.04.1678||John Martin & Eadith Cload|
Parents of Edith-1681, Roger-1687
|13.01.1678/9||Thomas Bennet & Anne Carter|
|Not found||John Edwards and Rebeccah his Wife|
Parents of Mary Edwards-1679
|10.06.1679||Edward King & Margery Bennet|
|Not found|| George Lewen (d1718) and Katharine his Wife (d1710)|
Parents of George 1681, William-1692
|21.06.1680||Robert Wills & Elizabeth Bennett|
|25.07.1681||Robert Wills & Jean Baker|
|28.07.1681||Thomas Bennet & Elizabeth Weston|
Parents of Elinor-1681, Thomas 1687
|22.09.1681||Robert Bennet & Mary Prestland|
No baptisms found
|07.08.1683||John Rithead & Warbery Bennett|
|29.11.1683||Thomas Burges/Burgess & Susanna Baker|
|Not found||Shadrack Lester and Mary his Wife|
Parents of William-1688
|Not found||Woods Rogers and his Wife Frances|
Parents of John-1688
|Not found||George Clode and his Wife Anne (she bap.6.12.1714)|
Thomas-1690, Edith-1692-99, Thomas-1695,
|17.02.1690/1||John Bennett (d1718?) & Elizabeth Newland
(By licence) |
Parents of Elizabeth-1693, Newland-1697, John-1700, Katharine-1702-04, John-d, John 1706,
(This John was not the young Captain Bennett)
|.01.1690/1||Ambrose Weston & Elizabeth Jubber (d1694)|
|Not found||Christopher Bennett and his Wife Jane|
Parents of Richard Benett-1690
|Not found||Robert Pelly and Sarah his Wife|
Parents of Thomas-1692
|Not found||Francis Harbin and Elizabeth his Wife|
Parents of Francis-1692
|Not found|| Henry Weston and Mary his Wife|
Parents of Ambrose-1692
|Not found||William Weston and Philes his Wife|
Parents of Richard-1692
|Not found||Peter Bennett and Elinor his Wife|
Parents of John-1692, Peter-1696, Hannah-1699
|Not found||Ambrose Weston (d.1729?) + Joan his Wife (d1731)|
Parents of Joshua-1695, Ambrose-1697,
George-1699, Ambrose-1705, Benjamin-1712
|Not found||Peter Weston and Sarah his Wife|
Parents of Hannah-1696
|20.04.1695||John Martin & Susanna Strood|
|Not found||John Masters and Dorothy his Wife|
Parents of Mary-1697bap99,
|03.04.1698||Robert Pelly & Millecent Baker|
There are Pellys buried Barking
|22.12.1698||James Seager & Joan Baker after Banns|
|02.02.1698/9||Christopher Bennett & Joan Fiander after Banns|
Parents of Christopher-1699
|09.04.1699||John Rogers & Ann Bennett after Banns|
Parents of Henry-1701
|09.09.1700||Elias Masters of Gosport & Hannah Grous|
Parents of Elias-1701
|07.09.1701||Moses Jumper of Ringwood & Mary Andrews|
|07.09.1701||Robert Lester & Elizabeth Leason of Hamworthy|
|Not found||William Martin and Sarah his Wife|
Parents of Matthew-1701
|Not found|| William Masters and Mary his Wife|
Parents of John-1702
|31.01.1702/3||Ambrose Weston & Judith Baker|
Parents of Mary-1704, Benjamin-1707
|12.09.1703||Richard Williams Sr & Elizabeth Bennett after Banns|
|21.01.1704/5||Joseph Baker & Mary Wild|
Parents of Susannah-1706
|20.11.1707||John Weston & Mary Dean of Shadwell, Middlesex|
Robert Cload of Hamworthy
Hamworthy is now a suburb of Poole
|21.12.1712||John ?Bennett & ?Uriah Burd|
|06.01.1712/3||Francis Edwards & Mary Linthom (= Linton?)|
'To Mary Edwards late Linton a guinea only'
|Not found||William Martin and Martha his Wife|
Parents of Henry-1713
|22.12.1713||Thomas Martin & Elizabeth Pike|
|24.12.1713||John Martin & Elianor Bennett|
Parents of John-1715, Thomas-1718, Robert-1720, Elianor-1723
|17.04.1715||William Martin & Mary Bennett|
Parents of William-1722
|04.08.1715||Mr Richard Weston of Plymouth & Mrs Elizabeth -|
Mayor of Poole 1723-4. His family included at least one knight, one MP
|Not found||Thomas Bennett and Susannah his wife|
Parents of Mary-1717, Mellicent-1719, Mellissa-1722
|Not found||John Bennett and Unah his wife|
Parents of John-1717
|Not found||Miles Bennett and ?Susan his Wife|
Parents of Betty-1717, Susannah-1723
|Not found||Robert Bennett and Catherine his Wife|
Parents of Catherine-1718, Catherine-1722
|Not found||Thomas Martin and Elinor his Wife|
Parents of Thomas-1718
|Not found||John Bennett and Mary his Wife|
Parents of ?Billing-1722, John-1723
|06.06.1720||John Bennett of Sarum & Elizabeth Sen-? of Poole|
|Not found||John Weston and Sussannah his Wife|
Parents of Mary-1722
|08.09.1720||John Bennett & Amy Wills both of Poole|
Parents of Amy-1723, James-1727
|Not found||Thomas Martin and Mary his Wife|
Parents of Nicholas-1723
|Not found||Abraham Stevens and Elizabeth his wife|
Parents of William-1729
NB There did not appear to be a Thomas Masters, Mary Masters or Thomas Stevens, Hannah Stevens in Poole up to 1733.
Inn Burgesses in 1690 from MS in Poole Reference Library.
The list is in apparent order of seniority, but with the titles of Mr and Esq left out by me:
John Carter Jr
Jon Linthonne Jr
Thomas Hade Jr
Sir John Morton
Sir Henry Buttler
Cap Jn Lawrence
Col T Strangwase
Sr Nathanl Nappir
Major Genll Earle|
In-Burgesses were Poole residents and property holders, mainly merchants. Out-Burgesses were usually former residents who still owned property in Poole and had merchant links with it. A good number of these gentlemen were into owling and smuggled goods, according to Culliford.
The Norman Kings, princes and nobles loved hunting. Stealth, speed, stamina and tactics were needed to hunt and kill fast-moving boar and deer. It helped develop the horsemanship, leadership and tactics needed for war, too. Royal Forests were the theatre for this pursuit.
'Forest' originally meant the area of land in which 'the Beasts of the Chase' were reserved for the sole pleasure of the King. Smaller areas with close-planted trees were called 'woods'.
English Kings put Forest Laws into place to protect four forest beasts and everything that nourished and sheltered them: red deer, fallow deer, roe deer and wild pig; collectively called "the venison". The vert (Latin for green), which provided the venison with their food and shelter, was divided into trees and other vegetation.
There were a number of Royal Forests in England: Nottingham Forest, the New Forest and the Forest of Waltham to name a few.
King Henry II set down a wide range of Forest Laws in 1184 to protect (and keep a check on) his vert and venison. It was illegal to trespass against the vert - to cut down a tree (even on private land), to allow livestock to graze in an area without permission, to protect your own crops by fencing, to attempt to turn forest waste (rough land) and woods into farmland (assarting) and even to take firewood.
The Forest was a kingdom within a kingdom; a land of woods, commons, long open rides, coppice, yeoman farms, modest retirement houses for gentlemen, rural inns, horse-dealers and crop traders and rogues living off all sorts of pickings.
The Forest Laws operated through patrols of forest officials, headed by a Forester and by elected verderers at special Forest Courts. All infringements of the Forest Law were originally punishable by imprisonment, but Kings were always short of money and they soon found it much more profitable to impose fines and collect the cash.
Henry II raised more money by extending the Forests' original legal boundaries. This increased the population living within each Forest and raised the opportunities for handing out fines and taking cash.
Every so often, the forest boundaries were ridden round by the King's officials and checked in an official perambulation. The last Essex perambulation was carried out in 1641 and covered some 60,000 acres. It started at Bow Bridge at Stratford. Its southern boundary was the line of the Roman Road from Stratford through Ilford, past the Whalebone in Dagenham parish and nearly to Romford. The western boundary ran up the River Lea as far up Nazeing.
The boundary then ran north of Epping and wound east and south towards Theydon Bois and Abridge. From Passingford Bridge the eastern boundary through Navestock and Curtismill Green was marked only by a series of stones. It then followed the Bourne Brook south to Park Corner, Collier Row, the Warren and then to a Marks stone and a Havering stone and the Roman Road, just west of Romford village.
The River Roding was the natural boundary dividing this great Forest into Waltham Forest and Hainault Forest. Immediately to the east of the Forest of Hainault, the Royal Liberty of Havering added more territory ruled by the King's private laws and privileges.
The Essex Forest was economically essential to England. Forest oaks were hauled to Barking and then floated down the tidal Roding to the Royal dockyards on the Thames; charcoal went by cart to the Gunpowder Mills at Waltham Abbey and the cannon foundries, oak bark went to the leather tanners and a stream of carts took firewood to the hearths and bread ovens of London, seven miles to the west.
Today's map shows all the Essex names within its boundaries.
As today, a swelling population put pressure on the unused land around London and an Act was passed in 1851 for the clearance of the old Hainault Forest. In six weeks 3000 acres of its woods were cleared of timber, and the only bits of it left are today's woodlands at Hainault, Lambourne and Claybury Woods.
|1670|| Colonies of North and South Carolina founded|
Wren starts work rebuilding 51 of the 87 churches lost in the Great Fire of London 1666
|1671||J Evelyn discovers Grinling Gibbons|
|1672|| Peter the Great born in Moscow, son of Tsar Alexei|
Newton's theory of light & colour read to The Royal Society in London
English v Dutch fleets' battle off Southwold, Suffolk
|1673||Test Act debars Catholics from public office|
|1674|| End of Third Dutch War|
19 Feb. New Amsterdam becomes British New York
|1675|| Louis XlV bribe of 500,000 crowns to Charles ll|
21st Jun. Foundation stone of the new St Pauls
Wren starts on the Greenwich Royal Observatory
|1676|| Robert Hooke devises the universal joint|
|1677||William lll marries his cousin Princess Mary|
|1678||Alliance with the Dutch against the French|
|1679|| Robert Hooke's law of elasticity|
Pepys committed to the Tower on a charge of treason
27 May Habeas Corpus Act
|1680|| Colony of New Hampshire founded in America |
Penny Post starts in London.
Pepys released from the Tower
Purcell becomes organist at Westminster Abbey
Lord Shaftesbury organises nation-wide petitions to exclude James Duke of York from being King. His followers called Whigs, opposed by the Tories.
|1681|| Colony of Pennsylvania founded|
Shaftesbury prosecuted for treason; flees to Holland after grand jury acquit him.
|1682|| Halley observes a bright comet - realises it returns every 76yrs|
Louis XlV revokes the Edict of Nantes - French Protestants excluded from Public and Royal offices
Wren starts building Chelsea Hospital
|1683|| Newton explains link between tides & gravitation|
Plot to assassinate Charles ll discovered.
Elias Ashmole opens the first UK museum, in Oxford
Princess Anne marries Prince George of Denmark
|1684|| Robert Hooke invents the heliograph|
Duke of Monmouth banished
James Duke of York restored to former offices.
|1685|| Charles ll dies. Duke of York is King James ll|
Duke of Monmouth lands, claiming the throne.
6th July. Battle of Sedgmoor, Somerset. Duke Monmouth def'd. Bloody Assizes follow - 320 executions/840 sold into slavery
15th July. Duke of Monmouth beheaded.
Catholics re-admitted to the Army
|1687|| Nell Gwyn (2 sons by Chas.ll) dies aged 37|
Newton - laws of gravitation and motion
|1688|| James Stuart born son of King James ll. |
King James falls out of favour.
England's Glorious Revolution - Whig and Tory leaders invite the King's son-in-law, William of Orange to save Britain from Catholicism. William accepts. Dutch fleet lands William and troops at Torbay
The Queen and Prince James are sent to France.
James ll eventually 'escapes' to France.
|1689|| William and Mary become joint sovereigns.|
Judge Jeffreys dies in the Tower of London
Protestant Derry besieged by James's Catholic army
War with France.
|1690|| Fears of a French invasion|
Sea battle off Beachy Head - French victorious
Battle of the Boyne near Drogheda, Ireland - William's army defeats James ll's army. Schomberg killed.
|1691|| New East India Company formed.|
Lloyds coffee house is London's insurance centre.
Limerick besieged and taken by William
|1692|| Glencoe massacre of MacDonalds by Campbells.
Royal Hospital Chelsea, built by Wren, opens|
Louis XlV of France and exiled James ll assemble a fleet at Brest and an army of 30,000 in Normandie.
Battle of Cap de la Hogue - large French fleet destroyed by Royal Navy under Admiral Russell
|1693|| William borrows £1m @10% to pay for the war and there has been a National Debt ever since|
William of Orange's forces defeated at Loudon.
|1694|| Royal Navy bombards France's le Havre, Dieppe & Dunkirk but is repulsed off Brest|
Tax on salt is doubled
Bank of England founded by Chancellor Montagu.
Queen Mary dies of Smallpox. William reigns alone
Purcell writes Music for Queen Mary's Funeral
|1695|| John Bennett gains his Captain's commission|
British troops capture Namur
Bank of Scotland founded
Henry Purcell dies: his 1694 Music played at funeral
|1696|| Henry Winstanley starts first Eddystone lighthouse|
Plot to assassinate Willliam lll near Turnham Green.
Board of Trade founded.
Window Tax introduced.
|1697|| Sir George Rooke commands the fleet.|
Peter the Great arrives Holland, meets William III
Palace of Whitehall burnt: Westminster Hall survives
Treaty of Rijswijk. Wm lll acknowledged by Louis XlV.
Choir of new St Pauls Cathedral opened.
|1698|| Tsar Peter the Great arrives in London|
London has pop. of 750,000: dirty, dangerous, vital.
Captain John Perry introduced to Tsar
Newton calculates the speed of sound.
Africa-America slave trade sanctioned by Parliament
London Stock Exchange founded
|1699|| Dampier explores west coast of Australia in Roebuck |
Billingsgate fish market opens
William's land grants to Dutch favourites unpopular
British army is reduced to only 70,000 men
|1700|| Dampier explores New Guinea|
Queen Anne's only child and successor dies
|1701|| Britain/Holland/Savoy form The Grand Alliance|
Start of the War of the Spanish Succession
Captain Kidd, pirate is hanged in London
James ll dies in France.
|1702|| The colony of Delaware founded in America|
William lll dies after fall from horse at Hampton Court
Queen Anne succeeds to the throne
John Churchill and Godolphin lead the Government.
First edition of the Daily Courant published
Coronation of Queen Anne
Lord Cornbery, dressed as Queen Anne, opens the New York assembly for the Crown: outrage there
John Churchill made Duke of Marlborough after capture of Kaiserworth, Venloo and Liege from French
Rooke capture treasure fleet in Vigo Bay
|1703|| Marlborough captures Bonn, Huy, Limoges, Guelders.|
England devastated by a Hurricane-force storm (the Navy alone loses 1500 men, 12 ships + 12 captains; the Eddystone lighthouse and Mr Winstanley are lost)
Samuel Pepys dies at his retirement home in Clapham
Daniel Defoe pilloried
Port Wine treaty signed by England and Portugal
|1704|| Beau Nash made Master of Ceremonies at Bath Spa|
Capture of Gibraltar by Admirals Rooke and Shovell
Battle of Blenheim - major Anglo-Austrian victory
|1705|| Lord Peterborough captures Barcelona|
Blenheim Palace started by Marlborough
|1706|| John Evelyn dies at Wotton near Dorking.|
Thomas Twining starts tea import business, London
Earl of Galway and the Allies enter Madrid
Battle of Ramillies nr Louvain British, Dutch & Danish under Marlborough (aged 56) defeat Spanish/French
Spanish empire in Europe dismantled.
Violent earthquake in Abruzzi, Italy, killing 15000.
|1707|| Act of Union + the updated Union Jack|
The Siege of Toulon
Shovell and five Navy ships lost on Scilly rocks
17 Dec 1707: terrible collapse of sluice and overflow of the Thames banks at Dagenham. Repair attempt.
|1708|| Transvestite Governor-General of America recalled|
Newcomen patents a steam-pump engine for mines
United East India Company formed
Old Pretender lands in Scotland
French fleet sent to him is beaten
Battle of Oudenaarde: Marlborough beats Vendome
|1709|| Low-cost iron founding starts at Coalbrookdale|
The Tatler, magazine first published
Battle of Malplaquet near Mons, France.
Costly victory by Marlborough and Prinz Eugene
|1710||Georg Friederick Handel comes to Britain aged 25|
|1711|| South Sea Company incorporated by Parliament|
First edition of The Spectator succeeding the Tatler
First Ascot horse race, attended by Queen Anne
|1712||Newcomen's first piston-steam engine at Tipton|
|1713|| Treaty of Utrecht: peace with Louis XlV's France|
Gibraltar and Minorca formally ceded to Britain.
|1714|| Board of Longitude offers £20,000 prize|
Queen Anne dies, George l of Hanover succeeds
15 Feb great storm sweeps away Thames wall repairs at Dagenham. Biggest ships cannot reach London
Board of Trustees & fixers meets at the Guildhall.
Act to stop-up Dagenham Breach hurried through
|1715|| Death of Louis XlV at Versailles - reigned 72 yrs.|
James Stuart, Old Pretender lands at Peterhead
|1716|| Capt Perry sent for by Dagenham Breach trustees|
Perry has £24k, 5 year remedy. Given go-ahead
|1717|| Captain John Bennett dies in Barking|
First ballet at Th'tre Royal - Loves of Mars & Venus
First Freemasons Lodge incorporated, London.
|1718|| Death of William Penn, aged 73|
Blackbeard the Pirate killed off North Carolina.
|1720|| South Sea bubble bursts: financial panic|
Peace with Spain
Bonnie Prince Charlie born in Rome.
|1721|| Robert Walpole becomes the first Prime Minister|
South Sea Company directors prosecuted
The carver Grinling Gibbons dies.
Act of Parliament in relief of Captain Perry
|1722||Duke of Marlborough dies at Windsor|
|1723||Sir Christopher Wren dies in London aged 91|
|1724||Jack Sheppard, highwayman, hanged.|
|1725||Tsar Peter the Great dies in St Petersburg|
|1726||Lloyds List is published|
|1727||Sir Isaac Newton dies, buried Westminster Abbey|
There were 34 family names in Capt Bennett's will: Baker, Bennett, Buloan, Butts, Cload or Croad, Conant, Crepigny, Edlin, Edwards, Fawler, Fewtrell, Fleming, Godsalve, Griffith, Hollman, Jones, Lester, Lewen or Lewin, Lewis, Linton, Martin, Masters, Middleton, Parham, Parrett, Pike, Pittman, Smith, Stephens or Stevens, Thorp, Weston, Wheelock, Whitfield and Williams: see the detailed Index of Names.