1711 William Lainchbery
I am the direct descendant (g5 grandson) of William Lainchbery. William was born the third child of Hercules Archelons Lainchbery (1660 – April 15, 1754) and Mary?, born in 1711. He was born into the small village of Chadlington, Oxfordshire, and baptised at the church of All Saints on March 02, 1711.
William Lainchbery married Hester Gardiner on February 13, 1732 at the church of St. Andrew's Kingham, Oxfordshire. Hester was born Abt. 1710 in the village of Kingham, but her parents remain a mystery. Kingham is about 4 miles west of Chaddlington, and before the Railway diverted the road, was the main drove west out of the village towards the market at Stow on the Wold.
Williams Grandfather, also William had been a Yeomen farmer of Chaddlington, and William was mentioned in his will of 1735 (see Will of William Lanchbury), which is transcribed below.
“To William Lanchbury, another son of my said son Hercules, all that my Messuage or Tenement and Lands which I hold by Lease from William Rollinson Esq and also the crop of corn that shall be growing thereon at the time of my death to h[old?] to him his Exec‘rs Adm‘s and Assigns for all the remainder of the term therein then to come __ the said William Lanchbury paying to my said son Hercules 20/- a year during his natural life by two equal half-yearly payments to wit at Michaelmas and Ladyday, and also pay all such sums of money as shall appear at my death to be charged on the said premises by way of Mortgage.”
However, his granddad seems to have had a rethink of this will, and on his deathbed in 1737, made the following amendment,
“A Codicil to be annexed to and taken as part of my Last Will and Testament.
I hereby ratify and confirm my Will dated 9/6/1735 every Article Clause and thing therein except as follows:
Whereas I have by my said Will charged the Messuage and Land devised to my grandson William Lanchbury with the payment of an Annuity of 20/- a year to my son Hercules Lanchbury during his life: Now I do hereby revoke the said Annuity of 20/- a year and give my said Messuage and Lands and crop that shall happen to be thereon as in my Will to my said grandson William Lanchbury absolutely, discharged from the said Annuity. [Dated 23rd Jan 1737]”
William senior died on the 18 February 1737 – William was married at this point, with one child, also called William.
Children of WILLIAM LAINCHBERY and HESTER GARDINER are:
WILLIAM LAUNCHBURY, b. 1735 Chadlington.
ELIZABETH LAUNCHBURY, b. August 1738; d. October 04, 1738, Chadlington,
ELIZABETH LAUNCHBURY, b. 1739 Chadlington; m. EDWARD HEWLET, September 28, 1761, South Leigh.
JOHN LAUNCHBURY, b. 1741, Chadlington. d. Sep 18, 1804: m. ELIZABETH HITCHMAN, July 27, 1777, Chadlington, (my g4 g/parents)
BETTEY LAUNCHBURY, b. 1743 Chadlington,
MARY LAUNCHBURY, b. 1746 Chadlington.
ISAIAH LAUNCHBURY, b. 1748, Chadlington; d. January 10, 1826; m. ESTHER NICHOLLS, November 11, 1778, Chadlington,
The relative wealth of the family can be judged by the church entries for Elizabeth (1738) who died an infant. The parish record that she was buried in wool, which was the next best thing if you couldn’t afford a coffin.
“1738 Oct 4 LANCHBURY Elizebeth inf buried in wool Chadlington d of William & Hester”
William Launchbury was a tenant farmer (numbered 192 on my Ahnentafel system) for most of his life, he finally inherited his share of the full farm in 1754, but was only around for two more years. On his death on February 23, 1756, his body was buried at Chaddington, but his wife Hester stayed on with the young family. This may have been the cause of the families decline in wealth, William, his eldest son (1735) was only 21, and John his brother, a mere 14 when they had to take over their fathers responsibilities. Also by this time, the offspring of William (1625) senior were now dominating the village of Chaddlington, and many of Williams children move south. Hester’s roots may have been influential in the marriage of her son John to Elizabeth Hitchman because the village of Lyneham is just two miles south of Kingham.
Hester herself gained some notoriety as a witness in the Rape case of Elizabeth Grafton in 1789. James Bowell had been convicted of the rape of Grafton and was due to hang. Sentence was postponed for several similar 'appeals' to be made. They generally requested that he be transported rather than hung. The offence appears to have been committed in Spelsbury, but the parish boundaries join at East End Chadlington:
“Hester Lanchbury of Chadlington solemnly declares & is ready to confirm it with an oath that she has known James Bowell & Elizabeth Grafton for many years - that she lives in a house adjoining to the dwelling of Elizabeth Grafton - that she has frequently seen the Prisoner in company with her during the last twelve month, that they were frequently together to her certain knowledge at ten eleven twelve o'clock at night - and that she believes that Elizabeth Grafton is a woman of very light Character-
The mark of X Hester Lanchbury
Signed in the presence of James Burden Parish Clerk & Jon. Coulling' dated April 1789”
Hester was about 79 at this point, and the bishops transcrips record that she had died 10 years earlier, but I suspect the entry to be an error, and 1797, not 1779. Thus, Hester died at the grand old age of 87, on January 14, 1797 in Chadlington, Oxfordshire.