A Memo from Robert Wadman

Robert Wadman was a farmer in Market Lavington. The 1881 census records Robert with his wife Sarah and 17 year old son, William as living on White Street where Robert farmed 750 acres employing fifteen men and eight boys. The 1891 censuses record Robert and Sarah as living, still, on White Street with Robert as a farmer. By 1901, Robert was a widower. Sarah had died in 1893.

But Robert and his family came, originally, from Somerset. Robert had been born in 1827 at South Cheriton. Sarah came from Bath.

In 1861 Robert had been a master cabinet maker in Bath where he employed 28 men and 12 boys.

The move to Wiltshire came at some time after 1864. For the 1871 census Robert, Sarah and family were at Eastcott where Robert had a farm employing 26 men, 12 boys and 8 women on the 1100 acres.

The memo we have dates from 1907 so Robert was about 80. It was sent to Whatley and Co of Pewsey and is therefore of interest to our friends at the Pewsey Heritage Centre which is based in the former Whatley building.

Memo from Robert Wadman of NMarket Lavington to Whatley and Co of Pewsey

Memo from Robert Wadman of Market Lavington to Whatley and Co of Pewsey

The memo reads:

Dear Sirs

I have you this day and beg to say that I will send my men on Monday if you will please get up steam and put on coal for them to come home and I oblige

Yours faithfully

Robt Wadman

We’ll try to read meaning into that brief message. It sounds as though Robert Wadman had a traction engine and perhaps it had been at Whatley’s for repair. Robert was going to send some of his workforce to collect it.

We know very little of the Wadmans, but they have featured on this blog before when visiting Stonehenge. Click here to see that page

Robert lived until 1920. He joined Sarah in Market Lavington church yard.


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