Posts Tagged ‘tithe’

Tithe Apportionment

August 30, 2013

This substantial document was recently acquired by the museum. The local church had needed to know about past charges and tithes and so obtained a copy which has now been passed to us.

  1. Preamble to the tithe apportionment document for Market Lavington

    Preamble to the tithe apportionment document for Market Lavington

It lists all the owners and occupiers of property in 1840 with information about how former tithes were being converted to other forms of payment.

It is a useful document for us because there is no 1841 census for Market Lavington. This new acquisition doesn’t give even the limited genealogical information of the 1841 census, but it does have a list of people which just might help to fill gaps in knowledge.

The lists look like this.

One page of names - owners and occupiers of property in Market Lavington in 1840.

One page of names – owners and occupiers of property in Market Lavington in 1840.

The right hand half is to do with the cash value of properties. The left hand side has the name of the owner, then the occupier, then a number to indicate a location, a description of the property and its state of cultivation. It is this left hand side that will be readily available in the museum with the whole document usable on request.

Names include William Cambridge apparently owning and occupying two cottages and gardens.

Names include William Cambridge apparently owning and occupying two cottages and gardens.

This is just a part of one of the 18 pages of names. We have chosen it here because it has the name ‘William Cambridge’ who we rate as one of our more famous villagers. Without an 1841 census we have had no official record of him until now, but there he is seemingly occupying two houses and gardens himself. Of course, he had a family and a workshop.

We are delighted to have this addition to our genealogy knowledge. We hope to acquire a readable sized tithe map. Then the numbers given as the location of properties will  be identifiable locations.

Paying the Tithe

October 11, 2012

Traditionally, people gave ten per cent of their livelihood to the church. This, presumably, guaranteed the payer their place in heaven and also ensured a very rich and well fed church.

By the twentieth century this had been commuted to a cash sum, perhaps more appropriate than a tenth of all a person had. At Market Lavington Museum, we have a tithe receipt for money paid by Mrs Joseph Ashley.

Receipt for tithe of 10/4 (52p) paid by Mrs Joseph Ashley of Market Lavington in 1904

We struggle to know as much about Mrs Ashley as we’d like to. What a shame it is made that bit harder by women being treated as property of their husbands. We only know, for sure, the forename of Mrs Ashley’s husband.

However, we think she was Elizabeth, born around 1823/24 in Market Lavington. Our best bet is that she was Elizabeth Durnford who married a Joseph Ashley in Kensington (London) in 1852. This couple lived in various locations in London until they settled back in their home county of Wiltshire, at Great Cheverell.

Joseph died in 1900 and in the Market Lavington burial register he is said to be ‘of Great Cheverell’.

For the 1901 census, Elizabeth was lodging with the Gye family on White Street, Market Lavington.

But now a little doubt creeps in. Elizabeth was buried in Market Lavington churchyard on 24th February 1904 less than a week before this receipt was issued to her. Was paying her tithe of ten shillings and four pence about the last thing Elizabeth did? Or was an executor/relative very keen to make sure the Reverend Edward Blackstone Cockayne Frith got his tithe to smooth Elizabeth’s way to eternal happiness?

Or have we got the wrong Mrs Joseph Ashley?

Do let us know if you can help us.