"CHULMLEIGH, a small ancient market town, which has recently been much improved, is pleasantly seated on an acclivity on the north side of the Litle Dart, about a mile from its confluence with the river Taw, eight miles S. of South Molton, 17 miles S.S.E. of Barnstaple, and 23 miles N.W. of Exeter. Its parish contains 1647 inhabitants, and 8815A. 1R. 4P. of land, generally fertile, and rising in bold undulations from the valleys of the Taw and Little Dart, and including the hamlet of Elston, and many scattered farm houses. Chulmleigh is described as a borough in ancient records, but it does not appear to have ever sent burgesses to Parliament. In 1803, the town suffered severely from an accidental fire, which destoyed 95 houses. It formerly had a share of the wool-combing trade, but it is now solely dependent for its prosperity on its markets and fairs, and the gentry and agriculturalists of the neighbourhood. . . . The Church (St Mary Magdalen) is a large ancient fabric, with a tower and six bells, and a handsome carved screen. It was repaired a few years ago, when four new windows were inserted on the south side. It was formerly a collegiate church, five prebendaries having been established in it at an unknown date . . . The prebends have been long consolidated with the rectory, and are called Brookland, Pendalls, Lower Hayne, Higher Hayne, and Deans. " [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]
Select map to view parish
boundaries in detail.
A parish in Witheridge Hundred, the Archdeaconry of Barnstaple, and Diocese of Exeter.
Snetzler, M.F. North Devon Surname Index to the Census. Microfiche: M.F. Snetzler, Barcott, Buckland Brewer, Bideford, Devon EX39 5LN. [Covers 1841, 1861, 1871 and 1881 census records for this parish]
Prebends of Chulmleigh, from The British Magazine and Monthly Register of Religious and Ecclesiastic Information (1840).
Chulmleigh - from J. Stabb. Some Old Devon Churches (London: 1908-16).
Chamberlain, Rev. Elsie. A short history of Chumleigh Congregational Church, Devon 1633-1983. [Chumleigh]: Rev. Chamberlain  16p: ill. [Barnstaple Library - 726.5/CHU 3/CHA]
Pearson, J.B. The church of Chulmleigh. Trans. Devon. Assoc. 39, (1907) pp.208-215. [Index]
Transcripts of the Parish Registers going back to 1651, and of the Bishops' Transcripts going back to 1610, are held in a special collection in the Westcountry Studies Library - for details see Parish Registers in the Devon & Cornwall Record Society's Collection.
The Devon FHS publishes indexes covering (as of June 2004): Baptisms 1813-1839, Marriages 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837 - for details see their book list.
Other churches and chapels (with pre-1840 records):
Entered into the IGI (as of Jan 1993): Parish Church Christenings 1610, 1621, 1635-1726 and Marriages 1610-1635 (incomplete), (entries based in part on Bishops' Transcripts); 1653-1726. East Street Independent Chapel Christenings 1812-1837
An index of baptisms, marriages and burials in the parishes of Bondleigh, Bow, Brushford, Burrington, Chawleigh, Chulmleigh, Clannaborough, Coleridge, Eggesford, Lapford, North Tawton, Nymet Rowland, Wembworthy and Zeal Monachorum. With photographs of the churches and extracts from White’s Directory (1850). CD-ROM 063, Exeter, Devon FHS (2014). [Bondleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1838; Bow Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Brushford Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1756-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Burrington Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Chawleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Chulmleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Clannaborough Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1759-1834, Bur: 1697-1836; Coleridge Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Eggesford Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1750-1838; Lapford Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1567-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; North Tawton Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Nymet Rowland Bapt: 1813-1841, Mar: 1756-1836, Bur: 1734-1879; Wembworthy Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1733-1837, Bur: 1813-1839; Zeal Monachorum Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837]
The transcription of the section for this parish from the National Gazetteer (1868), provided by Colin Hinson.
The Online Parish Clerk scheme's representative for this parish is Michael Mitchelmore, who invites queries and lookup requests. (Resources: Baptisms 1725 -1848; Banns 1773-1823; Marriages 1725-1837; Burials 1725-1837.)
This parish is one of the growing number of places for which the Devon Heritage website provides census or parish register transcriptions, articles, and/or illustrations, etc.
Bass, R.C.M. The Edworthy scandals: the will and the brawl: how the Church courts dealt with the delinquents and ... spent the Poor Rates. [s.l.]: R.C.M Bass (1990) 29 pages. [Westcountry Studies Library - p262.983/CHU/BAS]
Bowerman, Ann L. The Bater book and allied families: Shore, Ensley, Granger, Thomas, Baltimore, Gateway Press (1987) xxi, 613p: ill, maps. [Westcountry Studies Library s929.2/BAT]
Grant, Jenny. John & Martha Street, Devon Family Historian, vol. 139, (2011) pp.9-10.
Knapman, David. Multiple cousinshps, Devon Family Historian, vol. 142, (2012) pp.9-10. [The Webber and Greenslade families, in the Chulmleigh and South Molton area.]
Mooney, Olive. Tracing the Webbers. Typescript (1995) 12 pages. [Barnstaple Library - 929.2/WEB]
General historical and descriptive information, area map from 1765, details about administrative boundaries, etc., about Chulmleigh from the Devon Library's Local Studies Service.
Articles on John Cruwys and the Stolen Cow of 1848, and on Sanitary Conditions in Chulmleigh of 1856, transcribed by Debbie Kennett.
Bass, R.C.M. Chulmleigh before the Black Death. Chulmleigh: R.C.M.Bass (1987) 24 pages: ill, maps. [Westcountry Studies Library - pB/CHU 3/1086/BAS]
Bass, R.C.M. Chulmleigh. Short History and Walkround Guide. Chulmleigh: R.C.M.Bass. (1999) [DFHS Library p9942.35/CHU]
Bass, R.C.M. The Domesday Survey and the Country round Chulmleigh. Chulmleigh: R.C.M.Bass.
Bass, R.C.M. Armada Beacons. Chulmleigh: R.C.M.Bass.
Bromley, Rosemary D.F. Nineteenth Century Economic and Population Change at Chulmleigh. Trans. Devon Assoc. vol. 102 (1970) pp.121-140.
Cording, J.G. A Short History of the Congregational Church, Chulmleigh, Devon. (1933) [Exeter University Library, Plymouth Central Library]
Gentry, F.D. Take Care of your Fire and Candle [11 fires in Devon towns]. Devon Books (1985) 138p. [ISBN 0861147596] [Devon FHS Library 929.35]
Bass, R.C.M. The Chulmleigh book. Chulmleigh: Barrow, Bartlett (1997) 200p.
Westcott, Margaret. Surveying the Estates of Henry Courtenay, Earl of Devon, Marquis of Exeter and Traitor, 1543-4. In Devon Documents (ed. T. Gray). Tiverton: Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries, Special Issue (1996) [ISBN 0925836203] pp.199-203. [Okehampton, Chulmleigh, Tiverton, Broadclyst, Colyton, Exminster]
Ebdon, Martin. The landscape around Chulmleigh in 1711: a reconstructed map. Trans. Devon Assoc. 140 (2008) pp.45-89.
Particular of the extensive manor and borough, or lordship of Chulmleigh, in the county of Devon [1780?] 2 pages. [Westcountry Studies Library - LE 1780]
Chulmleigh contributors to a 1678 brief for the rebuilding of St Paul's Cathedral.Names from an 1822-23 edition of Pigot's Directory.
Bass, R.C.M. Poor Relief in Chulmleigh in the Early Eighteenth Century. Trans. Devon Assoc. 118 (1986) pp.43-61. [Raymond: Extracts from an account book of 1719-1735, including lists of the poor in 1720, etc.]
Bass, R.C.M. Administering the Poor Law in Chulmleigh, c. 1800. Trans. Devon Assoc. 127 (1995) pp. 145-161.
Bass, R.C.M. Chulmleigh Girls' School, later the Primary School. (History of the education of girls and infants in Chulmleigh from 1856 to 1937) [Chulmleigh] [198-?]. [Raymond: Many names, including the schedule of children entered for the school's inspection, 1874.]Find help, report problems, and contribute information.
Last updated: 13 Jul 2015 - Brian Randell
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