More Brentnall records:
Transcript of handwritten note of second page. (The first page is missing)
Star Chamber Records:
"Richard Brentnall (now dead) and others, including Richard Davenport, Gent.,
were present at Stockport market with others on 10th Sept 1518 when Ottiwell
Booth was murdered. Brentnall had accompanied Robert Pownall, the man
who killed Booth with a dagger. After they had helped Pownell to escape
into Lancashire Brentnall and others went to Bramhall where they were sheltered
by Sir Wm Davenport."
From the Davenport Collection:
" ?th Aug 1625 Lease for 3 lives. 1st part - Sir Wm Davenport of Bramhall.
2nd part - Richard Brentnall of Bramhall, husbandman. All that newe
erected howse or cottage and one little cowhouse in Bramhall aforesaid which
he the said Richard Brentnall with the lycense of the said Sir Wm Davenport
hath lately builte and sett uppe; as also those two severall croftes and
parcelles of ground (heare adjoiyninge to the said house) which the same
Richard Brentnall hath enclosed.
For the lives of Richard Brentnall and his sons Richard and Edmunde
Rent: 2 shillings a year, 2 good hens and a capon, 2 days shearing at harvest
time, 1 day fillinge of Mucke." Herriott. The Best Beast.
"8th Nov 1657 Lease for 3 lives (1) Peter Davenport of Bramhall esq. (2)
Elizabeth Brentnall, spinster, daughter of Richard Brentnall of Bramhall,
husbandman, late deceased. Same property. For the lives of John Brentnall
alias Kinsey, Katherine Brentnall alias Reddich, son and daughter of Elizabeth,
and John Brentnall, son of John Brentnall of Bramhall, husbandman. Rent etc
as before. "
The following pages are a transcript of typewritten sheets written
by John B Brentnall in 1987, who constructed the tree.
T H E C H E S H I R E B R E N T N A L L S
The "Tree" was originally started in the 1920s to establish
our connection with the Derbyshire families of Bower, Badiley and Cresswell
since there was a considerable income to be had from the Ground and Chief
rents in the New Mills area. Most of the work was done
by Edward (1857-1927) and his nephew Harold (1879-1955) but they were probably
helped by relatives since they must all have hoped to benefit.
They succeeded in proving the marriage of Ann Bower Cresswell to Thomas Brentnall
in 1785. The amount of income to each member of the family was
fairly small and so most of them sold their share to Edward and Harold (I
was told by my father that his father Sam was only too glad to sell his interest
to raise some much needed cash). Since ground rents cannot be
increased to keep pace with inflation the income became less and less until
finally the administration costs were as high, if not higher, than the income
and so the investment was finally given to the collector by Pauline Pelham
and Rosamund Brentnall.
For amusement, I have continued the Tree both backwards
and forwards and, apart from several names which I cannot fit in, the Tree
is about as complete as possible although I am still hoping to extend it.
Luckily, most of the family remained in Cheshire being "sons of the earth"
- farmers, blacksmiths, millers, etc. But where did Robert c 1530 come
from? Was he from Derbyshire, Staffordshire or Nottinghamshire where
the Brentnalls are quite thick on the ground or did he originally come from
Brent Knoll (Steep Hill) in Somerset? One Brentnall I would like
to trace is Thomas Brentnell. He is buried at Chelford (as are several
"Here lieth the body of Thomas Brentnell
Who died June 22nd, 1814 aged 33.
"By sudden death I'm snatched away
Death scarcely left me time to say
The Lord have mercy on my soul
So absolute is his control
Reflect when thou my grave doth see
The next that's made may be for thee."
I have been greatly helped in making the Tree by my friend
Mrs Margorie Pollard. She sent me a little rhyme at Christmas:-
We find them here, we find them there
Those Brentnalls turn up everywhere
But who, oh who is Thomas B.
Who died when he was 33?
In Chelford churchyard he lies cold
His parentage he never told
A secret kept by him in heaven
For us to find in '87."
1. Thomas Bower wills his property (subject to payments
to his wife and daughter Ann) to his three sons John, George and Yeaveley
but Yeaveley died under 21 and his share passed to his brothers. George
died intestate so that John became his heir-at-law.
2. John had two children John and Sarah. John died
at age 13 so that Sarah inherited the bulk of the estate.
3. Sarah of Rushop in the parish of Chapel-en-le-Frith.
She died a spinster and gave detailed instructions for the erection of a
"Handsome white marble monument" and for the care of her harpsichord at Peak
Forest Chapel. Neither of these instructions seems to have been carried
out - all she has is a small wall plaque in the new chapel. She
left money for the care of the poor of the district and then her estate was
to be divided equally amongst her cousins: Ann wife of John Cresswell,
yeoman of Chapel-en-le-Frith; Mary wife of John Bennett, surgeon of Chapel-en-le-Frith;
and John Badiley Radcliffe son of her late cousin Elizabeth Radcliffe.
4. John Badiley Radcliffe of Spinner Bottom in the parish
of Glossop. He wills his estate, together with money left to him by
his grandfather Badiley, first to his father and then after grants to the
poor of the district (similar to those of Sarah Bower) to his cousins Badiley,
Elizabeth, Ann and Sarah children of Ann Cresswell and Maria and Sarah children
of Mary Bennett.
5. Ann of Torr Top in the parish of Glossop. Wife
of John Cresswell (m 16/8/1762). Later wife of Joseph Howe (m 1789).
Before 1883 a wife's property automatically became the property of her husband.
Only in special circumstances therefore could she make a will. In this
case apparently since her property was that obtained under the will of Sarah
Bower she was able to make a will. She leaves her husband the
sum of $100 and, right at the end of the will, as an afterthought, she leaves
him one bed with sufficient furniture to furnish one room. She
leaves her daughter Ann wife of Thomas Brentnor of Stockport, cotton manufacturer
the sum of &50 and to her daughter Sarah Cresswell the sum of &250.
The remainder goes to her son John Cresswell for life and then to the use
of his first son and then to the use of the heirs of such first son and for
default of such issue to the use of every other son and their heirs and in
default of such issue to all and every daughter.
6. Thomas of Stockport. He was 23 when he married Ann Bower
Cresswell who was 17. They were married by licence at Stockport St
Mary on 4th August 1785. Witness Wm Lavender. Thomas stated that
he was a cotton manufacturer but where is the evidence? Was he a partner
in a mill or was the mill not under his own name? Family legend has
it that the mill was burnt down twice and that he could not carry on.
John Hargreaves invented the spinning jenny in 1764 but
it was no use for industry. Richard Arkwright's water frame was the
first machine to be used in a mill. This was in 1769. But it
was Crompton's mule in 1779 which combined the two earlier inventions which
really started the industrial production of cotton. Samuel Greg's
Quarry Bank Mill at Styal started in 1784 was probably the first mill to
be fully equipped with machinery.
Thomas may have bought in cotton goods from the cottage
industries and in the burial register at Chapel-en-le-Frith when his baby
daughter Elizabeth Badiley died in 1793, he is stated as being a Cotton Factor.
Thomas certainly owned land in Brentnall Street, Stockport since he sold
some of it on which was built the Wesleyan Sunday School. This building
is now the Masonic Hall. He is said by the family to have been a friend
of John Wesley although he was only a young man when Wesley died in 1791.
He was also reputed to have been mayor of Stockport but apart from the year
1786 the mayoral records 1780-1790 are missing and he does not appear on
the lists of other years (Heginbotham's History of Stockport).
7. Ann Bower wife of Thomas. In 1826 she tried to
prove that her brother John Cresswell's marriage to Mary Quinlan in Ireland
in 1801 was invalid and that since he died intestate she was heir to his
"considerable freehold property in the County of Derby". He was a Protestant
and Mary was a Roman Catholic. The marriage was solemnized by a protestant
clergymen (not the clergyman of the parish) in the private dwelling house
of Mary's father in Tipperary. The marriage was entered in the Register
of Marriages kept by the proper officer of the Parish of Tipperary has having
been solemnized at the parish church. John had several children by
Mary but the eldest son Thaddeus claimed all his father's property as his
"John Cresswell resided in Ireland after his marriage
with his family to the day of his death but made frequent visits to England
in that period where he always represented himself as a single man and denied
that he was married". Council's opinion was that the marriage was legal.
(Lucky for John's children.)
8. Arminald. Where does she fit in? The Brentnalls
and the Lavenders were close friends. Is this the Arminald who was
apprenticed to Samuel and Elizabeth Green, mantle and gown makers of Stockport,
for &6 in 1754?
9. William. There seems to be no special reason why
he should marry at Peak Forrest Chapel. Perhaps his wife was a friend
of the Bowers. Peak Forrest Chapel - England's Gretna Green -
did not come under the auspices of the Church but was built for the use of
the workers and miners of the Royal Forest. The records of the Chapel
are held at Chapel-en-le-Frith church but are known as "Foreign".
10. John. It must have been difficult for the ordinary
man to know what to do during the Civil War. In 1642 John and 23 other
tenants wrote to their landlord Sir William Davenport of Bramall Hall, Bramhall,
for guidance: "For howsoever wee would not for the world harbour a disloyal
thought against his Maiestie yet we dare not lift our hands against that
honourable assembly off Parliament who wee are conffydently assured doe labour
both for the happiness of his Maiestie and all his kingdom".
William Davenport was a very half-hearted Royalist - in fact Bramall
Hall was occupied several times by each party.
11. Jasper of Over Peover. He married Esther Jackson
in 1778. In his will he mentions his son John and leaves him &10
"which I ordain to be the utmost limit of his claim". (William must
have died young there being another William born in 1790). Esther died
in 1787. He mentions his "well beloved partner whose maiden name
is Sarah Jackson" and who conducted herself "as a good and faithful wife".
He leaves his estate to her "during the term of her natural life" and then
to her four children William, Jasper, Peter and Ann. Were Esther
and Sarah sisters? Difficult to tell from the records. They both
seem to have come from Macclesfield. They may have been cousins.
Sarah is named on his gravestone as his wife.
12. George - Gentleman, farmer, shopkeeper.
In his will he mentions his 21 houses and shops in Brinksway, Stockport,
his beneficiaries being his son William and his niece Elizabeth Livesley.
One of his tenants he names as David Brentnall living in Brinksway - presumably
13. David born c 1803 - where was he baptized? All
his brothers and sisters were baptized at Chelford. The 1851 census
of Stockport gives him as age 48, common labourer, born in Heaton Norris
and living under 66 Brinksway. (His landlord brother does not seem
to have treated him very well.)
14. John Cresswell married in 1843 probably at Tiviot Dale
Wesleyan Chapel. When his son George was born in 1848 he was living
at Chestergate Stockport and his occupation was Mill Manager. When
Sam was born in 1849 he was living at Turncroft Lane (New Zealand Road, Portwood)
Stockport and his occupation was given as Coal Dealer. When his youngest
son Henry Boyre was born in 1863 he lived in Robert Street, Chorlton-upon-Medlock,
Manchester, occupation being Mill Manager. In his will he states
that he is a Cotton-Spinner and mentions his patented invention of an automatic
coal stoking machine. In a codicil to his will he is stated as
being a Gentleman.
Judging from his gravestone in Southern Cemetery, Manchester,
he was a wealthy man when he died. The stone is red marble, about 10
feet high with an angel on the top with arm outstretched upwards obviously
pointing the way. There are 13 Brentnalls there (the names of Sam Boyre
and his son Anthony Boyre are on the gravestone although they are not buried
there). Originally it was stipulated that one grave should be
kept for any Brentnall unable to pay full burial fees. This grave is
presumably still available.