"MENDLESHAM, a parish and small town in the hundred of Hartismere, county Suffolk, 4 miles N.E. of Haughley railway station. Stonham is its post town. It is situated near the East Union section of the Great Eastern railway, and is chiefly agricultural. The town, which consists mainly of two long streets, parallel with each other, was formerly a market town, but the market has long been discontinued. The land is productive, and the air salubrious. The road from London to Norwich, via Ipswich, passes through the eastern portion of the parish. The appropriate tithes have been commuted for a rent-charge of £540, and the vicarial for £580. The living is a vicarage* in the diocese of Norwich, value £550. The church, dedicated to St. Mary, is a noble structure, with a lofty square embattled tower containing five bells. The N. and S. porches are embellished with grotesque sculptures. The register dates from 1558. There is a brass of J. Knyvet, in armour, bearing date 1417. The church was given by William Rufus to Battle Abbey. There are places of worship for Baptists and Wesleyans. The parochial charities produce about £200 per annum, realised from land, besides other smaller charities. The charities formerly produced a more considerable sum, but, from some unexplained cause, have been reduced to the above. An ancient silver crown, weighing sixty ounces, was found here in the 17th century, and in 1758 a gold ring, with a runic inscription. Charles Tyrell, Esq., is lord of the manor. A pleasure fair is held on the 2nd October."
Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)