Blackwells of Derbyshire 1400-1700
(c) HTML Draft Aug.1996 David Blackwell email: email@example.com
This is an outline of a work in progress on the Blackwells of Derbyshire,
which I've been working on since 1984. I have collected over 30 early Blackwell
wills mostly from Lichfield, and several Chancery court cases of the 1500
& 1600's, plus material from the Bagshaw Collection at Sheffield Library
and the Duke of Portland papers(DDP) at Nottingham Record Office. Inaddition
I have had the help of many people. The Blackwells were involved in farming,
lead mining, smelting and marketing. They may be a pre-conquest family who
were dispossessed of the manor of Blackwell. It appears they were its caretaker
or leaseholder for its owner the Priory of Lenton for generations. Currently,
I am researching connections between Blackwells in Derbyshire, Kent, and
Watford Hertfordshire. And I am trying to research London Blackwells. I hope
people might help me in proving or disproving the following connections.
Currently (8-96) of interest is the will (dated
1515 and found in the History of Bedsfordshire by Jack Davis) of Robert
Blackwell10 (see below) and his son George. The
names match those found in Manningham's 1499 will. Time will tell if
contradicting evidence is found. DCB
One connection is in the will of Richard Blackwell of Blackwell Derbyshire
dated 1503. He names his six sons and three of his five daughters. It mentions
his son Sir William parson of Ash (spelled Hasch). Another is a grant of
land (Bag.C.1254A) dated 3 Dec. 1502 also shows William Blackwell as rector
of the church of Ash (co.Kent).
The other connection is a Chancery Court case
C3/209/78 PF4393 1575-87 concerning disputed land
in Litton Derbyshire. It gives 5 generations of descendants of a
William Blackwell. And there is a will of a William
Blackwell dated 1514 at St. Albans Herts. mentioning a son Robert and a Philip
Blackwell, who are also in the court case as William's son and grandson.
More evidence is needed to show if these are the same William or cousins.
It may be the land (50 acres) came from the Litton family as dowery.
Philip Blackwell(d.1978) has shown there are many early Blackwells. London
had a Blackwell Hall in it from the 1300's to the 1600's. But the records
are too sparse to show relationships. Philip's work on the Watford Blackwells
(1500 to today) is very good but where did they come from? I propose they
are from Derbyshire. So let me relate this genealogy of the Blackwells of
the Peak in Derbyshire.
The following is constructed from many wills, plus the Kirk Ireton pedigree
chart confirmed to JB of Blackwall, K.I. by Isaac Heard Lancaster Herald
1764, Reg. of Nobility & Gentry. v.2 fol.668, plus the Eyre work by
R.Meredith, plus notes by Wooley, etc. at the Society of Genealogist in London,
and other sources. Much work remains to be done.
Descendants of Richard and Agnes(Tunstead) Blackwell (circa 1500)
Richard9 Blackwell and his wife
Agnes(Tunstead) had six sons
(Ralph(will 1527), Richard,
Robert(will 1515), Hugh,
Thomas(will 1554)) and five daughters. Their brass
inlaid tomb stone is in Taddington Church. His
will is dated 1503 Sheffield Archive: Bagshaw
Item1303. It mentions his children, wife, much land, and other people. Richard
had a 90 year lease of the manor from Lenton Priory which was later contested
in court after its dissolution. (Can anyone in the Boston to Casco Bay Maine
area help me read these contested court cases? I have xeroxed copies of them,
also some 8mm and VSH videotape of other records.)
A coat of arms was granted to Richard Blackwell and are on
Arms: Argent, a Talbot courant, sable on a chief decette of
the second three besants.
Crest: A demi Talbot couped proper of the second, a helmet.
Motto: Malo mori quam foedari ( I had rather die than be dishonored)
The dog indicates service to the king as a courier, messager or ambassador.
The three besants (circles) represent Saracen coins with which the crusaders
used to decorate their shields. The helmet represents knighthood.
Reported ancestry of Richard9 Blackwell (d.1503)
The Kirk Ireton Blackwall chart shows the following ancestry and many
Robert Blackwell1 (ca.1267),
Sir John Blackwell2 (d.1307),
Ralph Blackwell3 (ca.1367),
Adam Blackwell4 (ca.1385),
Robert Blackwell5 (ca.1408 m.__ Poole),
William Blackwell6 (m.d.o.Meverell of Throwley),
Robert Blackwell8.(m.Isabel sister of Sir Robert Litton of Litton,
keeper of the Great Wardrobe of Henry VII) (I am researching these ancestors
separately, see Wedgwood's Hist.Parl.Biog. for Litton).
It now appears that Robert8 Blackwell's grandson
Robert10 (son of Richard Blackwell9) whose 1515 will
was found (by Jack Davis) in the History of Bedfordshire is a chancery clerk
for Henry VII. see below. The question now is : is this Robert8
the chancery clerk of Richard III in 1483? or does Richard9 have
a brother Robert9?
Descendants of Richard and Agnes Blackwell
1. Ralph10 Blackwell (1st heir of Richard and
Agnes) m. Dorothy dau.of Humphrey Stafford of Eyam. (note: Humphrey is Roger
Eyre's grandson and Dorothy's niece Gertrude m Rowland Eyre s.o. Stephen
and Ann (Blackwell) Eyre). Ralph is mentioned in the DANHS Journal, his will
is dated 1527 (B1298) and mentions his wife Dorothy, four sons:
George, Anthony, & Ralph; and four
daughters: Amy, Crystal, Elizabeth, &
Dorathy; and his brother in law Thomas Bagshaw.
a. Richard11 Blackwell (eldest son) m.Alice
dau.and heir.of Nicholas Beard of Beard Hall.
The K.I chart shows six sons: Ralph,
Hugh, George, Francis, & Richard.
1. Ralph12 Blackwell of Dethick who m.Ann
dau.and heir. of Richard Wendesley.(see B2022).
A. Wendesley13 Blackwell (d.1634) m. Martha
d.o.Thomas Gardiner of Adderbury, Oxford. The K.I. chart shows three children.
Sir Thomas14 Blackwell m. Dorothy dau. &
heiress of Edward Mayhall; had 2 daughters. Dorothy was buried 1638
Dec.16. Thomas was a Royalist who went broke fighting for Charles I.
(this is a possible link to Virginia Blackwells since many Cavaliers went
to America after their defeat and amnesty in 1646 or after Charles I was
executed in 1649). Bishop Transcripts show the following baptisms in Mansfield
Woodhouse to Thomas and Dorothy Blackwell:
Mary Blackwell bapt.1632 Mar.29
Catherine Blackwell bapt. 1633 Jan.21.
Wendesley Blackwell bapt.1636 July 12.
Dorothy Blackwell bapt.1638 Nov. 15.
Gervase14 aka George Blackwell m. Alice Hall see Water's
Geneal.Gleanings p.687-690. George was a skinner & citizen of London.
The three children are listed in Alice's mother Sarah (Lumley) (Hall) Wraxall's
Edward Blackwell ,
Dorother Blackwell ,dau. of Mr.Gervase Blackwell and Alice his wife
was baptised Aug. 5th 1636 in Mansfield Woodhouse.
Mary14 Blackwell m1. ___ Bridges, m2. Rowland Eyre of Bradway nephew of T.Eyre.
2. Nicholas12 Blackwell m.
Senche (he was a solicitor and suspected recusant(Catholic) ) will 1598/9.
Nicholas appears in many papers. He is of Rydware Hampstall,Staffordshire
and has business with Sir Thomas Fitzherbert (many sources) B.2510
Prudence13 Blackwell m.
Thomas Eyre (d.1637)
(s.o.Rowland,s.o.Stephen, s.o. Rowland).( see her pre-nuptual. agreement
other possible daughters...
3. Hugh Blackwell12 m.daughter of Gilbert Exeter
and had a son and daughter: (can anyone find any of these wills?)
George Blackwell13 of Duffield (inherited 10 Pounds from uncle
Nicholas) had a dau.(B2525)
Ann Blackwell13 m. John Slifield of Castlehay, Tutbury B2525;
1. Rachael Slifield(20 marks from g.uncle Nicholas B. B.2510A will); (B.2525)
4. George Blackwell12 m.Grace d.o.H.Columbel
of Darley (? godson of G.B. in 1576 will?)
5. Francis Blackwell12 of Darely
Dale and Dale Head (sold by son to R.Eyre cousin's son (B2587,1611)
Francis13 m Beatrice Frenchville sister of Sir Peter,
6. Richard Blackwell12 of Rydware
Hampstall (will 1593/4 (B1305), not in KI chart) left belongings to Prudence
Eyre, Dorothy Chapman, Katherine Barker and others.
b. George11 Blackwell of Tideswell, suspected
recusant with Eyre, Pursglove, Cock, and Nicholas Garlick B2019.
m. Elizabeth sister of Stephen Eyre
of Hassop (FMG.561), will 1576
Note Stephen Eyre m2. Ann d.o.Thomas10 Blackwell, will 1554
Stephen's grandson Thomas m. Prudence13 Blackwell (see family
The Eyres of Hassop by Rosamond Meredith, Thesis 1964 Sheffield Univ.Lib.)
1. Francis12 Blackwell (sons were not in G.B. will only in conflicting
version of K.I.chart).
A. Henry13 Blackwell of Querin, Lieut. to Sir James Blount Col.
B. Robert13 Blackwell m. Elizabeth d.o. Thomas Alsop. (?possible
link to NY Blackwells)
2. Robert12 Blackwell m. Dorothy d.o.
Thurston Allen of Weston (mentioned
in C3/209/78) (his widow inherited 40 s. from G.B.will). Therefore Robert12
died between 1571...1576. Apparently, as stated in the court case, his widow
Dorothy Blackwell married Humphrey Blackwell son of Ellis Blackwell and grandson
of Humphrey Blackwell of Litton.
A. Henry13 Blackwell inherited leasehold Gresedale farm from uncle
Thomas Eyre (will 1571).
B. Florence13 Blackwell, 40 Shillings from G.B. 1576 will
This Florence probably is the servant in Bess of Hardwick's will
3. Dorothy12 m. Robert Cook (inherited 40 shillings in fathers will of 1576).
c. Anthony11 Blackwell will Bags1304 dated
1591/2, supervisor in G.B. will 1576
d. Ralph11 Blackwell ;
e. Amy11 Blackwell ;
f. Crystal11 Blackwell ;
g. Elizabeth11 Blackwell
h. Dorathy11 Blackwell inherited six shillings from her brother
George's will of 1576.
2. Richard10 Blackwell m. Grysell Boyvill;
He appears in the employe of Ralph and Henry Sacheverell. (Ralph
and John Sacheverell are retainers to
Lord Hastings 1474 1478).
Richard and Grysell's memorial stone is in Monyash Church.
a. William Blackwell11 (wp.1598) m. Ann or Mary d.o.Ralph Sacheverall)
res. in Alton, Derby, his wife is the aunt of Sir John Gell of Hopton a Royalist
knighted by Charles I for collecting taxes! but who joined the Parliamentarian
forces after 1642.
1. Ralph Blackwell12 eldest son sold Alton in Wirksworth, Steepley,
& Melbourne, died unmarried.
2. John Blackwell12 2nd son, m. Alice d.o. ___ Agard of
Foston, Derby( more documentation needed) (note a John Agarde gent. was a
retainer of Lord Hastings in 14 Edward
IV 1474 more than 100 years before)
A. Jane Blackwell .
B. William Blackwell of Brassington.
C. George Blackwell m. Judith Champney near London, resided Derby.
He is taxed for 5 hearths in Derby (Derby.Hearth Tax 1662-1670, pub.1982).
He is the minister in Derby and plays the viola in a group with Mr. Bateman.
This is mentioned in Glossops History of Derbyshire pub 182?.
D. Henry Blackwell of Burton.
E. Elizabeth Blackwell m. Rauton Tompson, 1s. 1d.
3. Elizabeth Blackwell12 m. Thomas(g.g.son of Thomas and
Cecily (Blackwell) Bagshaw of The Ridge,
living 1611)source FMG p.231 not in Kirk Ireton pedigree, had 8 children.
The Bagshaws are a well documented family.
Anyone want to put it on the Web?
5.Thomas Blackwell12 m. Ellen Challoner
of Boylston, Derbys, will 1623 Dec.1.
A.William Blackwell13 (d.<1680) m. Elizabeth Mason of Heynaston,
B. Thomas Blackwell13 mentioned in fathers will.
C. Alice Blackwell13 m. ___ Rowland, in fathers will.
D. Elizabeth Blackwell13 m. ___ Ampfill, in fathers will.
E. Bridget Blackwell13 m. ___ Harrison, in fathers
will, also Wolley MS.6675 f.222.
C. Richard Blackwell 13 (only in K.I. chart not
in Wooley). possible mistake.
Blackwell13 m Alice(d.1663) dau. & heiress
of Thomas Bradshaw of K.I. (cousin of Bradshaw the
regicide) will probated 1680.
The Blackwalls of Kirk Ireton are his descendants and still live there.
More on his descendants later. This connection needs more evidence.
6. Richard12 Blackwell had dau. Grysell (source
College of Arms, Bluemantle Purs. only)
3.Robert Blackwell10 ( in fathers
will of 1503, in K.I. Chart). Robert Blackwell 's
will (dated 1515) has been found in Bedfordshire
by Jack Davis, David L. Blackwell's cousin. He names his brother Sir William
Blackwell, his executor in his post-1515 codicil, thus separating him from
William Blackwell of Watford, who died 1514. Sir William Blackwell was then
at Stevenage, Herts. Robert's son George's will also turns up - with
Germun Poole as executor. DLB also has
an item tieing Robert and others to the Litton family. Robert Blackwell appears
to have married in 1493 Mary Pole, daughter of Ralph Pole (d.1492 (probably
son of Ralph Pole (d.1460)) of Radbourne (C.I.P.M. Hen.VII,ii,888 via Wright).
Ralph Pole was a retainer of Lord Hastings.
Barbara, Alice, Jane, Henry (see the 1515 will
George Blackwell, (the finding of these two wills in Bedfordshire is very
xx??Henry Blackwell10, living 1565 (src.College
of Arms, Bluemantle Purs.only,BN v.5,p.13,1983) I think this is not Richard
and Agnes's son but a grandson.
4.William Blackwell10 parson, Rector of
Ash, Kent in 1503. Named as executor to his brother Robert's 1515 will, where
is of Stevenage, Herts. Thus the 1514 will of a William Blackwell
of Watford(Herts) husbandman (158 Walingford. Arch.St. Albans.) is not his
5.Hugh10 Blackwell (in father's will, no other
6.Thomas10 Blackwell m.Ann dau. of
John Blount of Blount Hall Staff. His
will is dated 1554 and his is of Shirley, Derbyshire. (he is a cousin of
Sir John Blount, Lord Mountjoy, who was a peer and a
retainer of Lord Hasting?)
Ellen Blackwell11 m. Christopher Hurt of Ashbourne.
(see Derbyshire Pedigrees 1569 &1611 page 144 for their children)
Ann Blackwell11 mx1545. Stephen Eyre of Hassop (his 2nd wife)
his sister Elizabeth Eyre m. George.B of
Tideswell(see Harl. FMG p.561 MS.232)
see FMG.p.561 or Harleian v.63 p.15 for descendants.
9.Grace Blackwell10 neither Agnes nor Grace are married in 1503
when the will is made.
note a John Hunt and Robert Gilbert are mentioned in the 1503 will
they may be husbands of the two un-named daughters.
11.daughter10 Blackwell .
I would like to research records of the Duke of Rutland at Belvoir (who owned
leaseholds in Litton leased to some Blackwells ca.1600). I also hope to research
in-law wills and I would welcome any help in finding and transcribing
in-law wills and finding other references.
I do not currently have time to follow up other promising leads such as the
Blount family who may be associated with the Virginia Blackwells or the Alsop
family who may be associated with the New York Blackwells or the Sacheverell
I will be putting my note on these web pages as time permits.
I am also interested in reading work of others, especially pre 1700.
I have yet to transcribe or organize much of the material so far collected.
Comments, corrections, and additions welcomed.
David Craig Blackwell email
72 Center St.,Groveland, Massachusetts, 01834 U.S.A., phone (508) 373-2358
(508) 475-9090 x 1678 work, (508) 475-2157 work FAX.