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A 1696 CENSUS OF SOWTON

Devon Record Office DRO 780A/PZ 1a-6

Transcribed by Diana Ingram

This document, a set of loose sheets in a folder, is in extremely bad condition. Even with the help of ultra-violet lighting useful information could be retrieved from only a few of the sheets, sections of many of which are very illegible or missing. The photographs obtained from the DRO showed two pages on each of five A3 sheets - just two of these photographs carried a reference number.

Sometimes referred to as a census, the document in fact arises from the 1695 Act for Granting to His Majesty certain Rates and Duties upon Marriages, Births and Burials, and upon Batchelors and Widowers, for the Term of Five Years, for Carrying on the War against France with Vigour. The opening sentence of this Act is: "We, your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects the Commons in Parliament assembled, from a deep sense of the many great occasions which engage your Majesty in many extraordinary expenses for the necessary defence of your realms and the prosecution of a war against France with vigour, have cheerfully and unanimously given and granted unto your Majesty as an additional supply and aid, the rates, duties, impositions and sums of money hereinafter mentioned." [English Historical Documents 1660-1714, by Andrew Browning]

"The Marriage Duty Act of 1695 imposed a tax from 1 May 1695 (to pay for a war with France), payable on a sliding scale, on the occasion of births (rather than baptisms), marriages and burials. An annual tax was also payable by bachelors (over 25 years old) and by childless widowers. Those people receiving poor relief were exempt from the tax. . . the tax failed to raise sufficient revenue for the government and was repealed in 1706." [Ancestral Trails, by Mark Herber]
Sheet 1 - 780 A/PZ 2                 
[Illegible damaged fragments, a few numbers visible]    
     
Sheet 1a - 780 A/PZ 1 (a)    
[Illegible damaged fragments, a few numbers visible]    
     
Sheet 2    
[Damaged lists of sums of money headed "Bachelors & Widowers"]
     
Sheet 2a    
[Contains the text:]    
... of Sowton made ...    
... and sums of money grant... to his Maj...    
... paid by virtue of an Act of Parliament ...    
... year of his Majesty's Reign intituled An A...    
... Sertaine Rates and Duties upon Marriages, Births,    
... Batchelors and Widowers for the term ...    
... the war Against France with ...    
... Quality, Estate and Qualification    
... of Burialls ...    
[Followed by a list of sums of money]    
     
Sheet 3    
    Marriages
Susana ... ipps[?]   8 - 0 - ..
Elizabeth ...   0 - 0 - ..
Mary of Dall[?]...   0 - 0 - ..
...ny   0 - 0 - ..
..ge Merry   2 - 6 - ..
..artha: his wife   0 - 0 - ..
...nes P...sto...   0 - 0 - ..
Thomas Merry   2 - 6 - ..
George Andrew   2 - 6 - ..
Margaret his wife   2 - 6 - ..
..eorge Andrew Jun   2 - 6 - ..
Robert Andrew   2 - 6 - ..
Rolfe[?] Andrew   2 - 6 - ..
Henry Payne   2 - 6 - ..
Hana his wife    
Elizabeth Jame...    
John    
Christopher[?]    
....his wife    
...rd...Pooke    
Elizabath[?] Pooke    
[?]anna Pooke    
..ne Toombe    
Jane Payne    
William Coombe[?]    
... Coombe    
     
Sheet 3a    
J...   .. - 1 - 0
Andrew Weare   .. - 2 - 6
Mary his wife   .. - 0 - 0
William Weare   .. - 0 - 0
Mary Weare   1 - 2 - 6
Ann Weare   0 - 0 - 0
Elizabeth Wea .. - - his son   1 - 2 - 6
Hanna Hunwood or Hawood...Annum[?]   0 - 0 - 6
Edward Clemen[?]   0 - 2 - 6
Me..d..d .....   0 - 0 - 0
Jane White   0 - 0 - 0
M...d[?]ed Clement   0 - 0 - 0
Agnes Clement   0 - 0 - 0
Edward Clement   2 - 0 - 0
John Clement   2 - 0 - 0
Elizabeth Clement   0 - 0 - ?
Mary Payne   0 - 0 - 0
Mary Burgin .....   0 - 0 - 0
William Lee Sen.   2 - 6 - ..
Mary his wife   0 - .. - ..
Mary Lee   0 - .. - ..
Roger Weare   2 - 6 - ..
Jane[?] His wife   0 - 0 - ..
Roger Weare jun   2 - 6 - ..
Thomas We...   2 - 6 - ..
Andrew We...   2 - 6 - ..
Jane ....   0 - 0 - ..
     
Sheet 4    
[Several fragmentary lines of text:]    
  The ...
  of the ...
  King William ...
  for the Sixth and ...
  ...ewling to his ...
  And Burialls and ...
  years for Carr...
   
              Mar...
     
Henry Ashe, Gent   1 - .. - ..
Sarah the wife of Henry Ashe, Gent   0 - .. - ..
Elizabeth the daughter of Henry Ashe   0 - .. - 9
Henry Ashe, son   0 - 2 - ..
Ann the daughter of Henry Ashe   0 - 0 - ..
Sarah the wid of John .....    
John Hunwood, Gent   2 - 6
Agnes his wife   0 - 0
Elizabeth Hunw...   2 - 0
Nicholas Hunwo...   0 - 0
Elery[?] his wife   0 - 0
Nicholas Hunwood   0 - 0
Elizabeth Lee wid   0 - 0
Roger Lee   2 - 6
Nicholas Lee   .. - 0
Sarah Lee   .. - 0
     
Sheet 4a    
Nicholas Lee    
William Lee, jun.    
William Payne    
Thomas Erton[?]    
John[?] Sanken[?]    
John Adams    
..aa - P.....    
Thomas[?] Trott    
Marke Pooke    
Richard Shoulders[?] Curat   0 - 2 - 6
Mary[?] his wife   0 - 0 - 0
Richard Shoulders   0 - 2 - 6
...ary Shoulders   0 - 0 - 0
Elizabeth Shoulders   0 - 0 - 0
John Sprague   0 - 0 - 0
...mon .....   0 - 0 - 0
...ry Woode   0 - 0 - 0
..hn Brooke   0 - 2 - 6
..... North   0 - 2 - ..
Catharine ...   0 - 0 - ..
Edward Starr   0 - 0 - ..
John Andrew[?]   0 - 2 - ..
Liddia Litt..   0 - 0 - ..
     
Sheet 5    
[Fragment with a column of sums of money, ending with the total 36 - 6 - 10.]
     
Sheet 5a    
[Fragment with several columns of sums of money and the text]
...ames of all other ... able by the Said Act    

Brian Randell, 6 Aug 2009

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