Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries, vol. VI, (January 1910 to October 1911), p. 94.
Charles F. Cole
Prepared by Michael Steer
It seems that little is currently known of the corporate history of Okehampton. In 2012, the Mayor and Town Clerk visited Devon Records Office and discovered the many hundreds of items relating to the town that are held in its archives. Among those were a variety of Royal Charters granted to Okehampton by Edward I, James I and Charles II. The charters commented on the Courtenay family, who rebuilt Okehampton Castle. The charter granted by Charles II mentions a list of Okehampton’s MPs, held in the town hall. One noteworthy name is William Pitt the Elder, who held the post of Prime Minister from 1766-8. He was MP for Okehampton from 1756-7. The charters also declare that the town and borough of Okehampton grant the town mayor two three day fairs in Okehampton, one upon the second Wednesday in March, and one on the first Wednesday in September. In all this array of historic data, it is likely that information about Mayor William Dodge and his family is as deeply buried now as it was when Note 84 appeared in the D&CN&Q. The article, from a copy of a rare and much sought-after journal can be downloaded from the Internet Archive. Google has sponsored the digitisation of books from several libraries. These books, on which copyright has expired, are available for free educational and research use, both as individual books and as full collections to aid researchers.
Note 84. DODGE FAMILY. - Can any of your readers give me information relating to the family of William Dodge, seven times Mayor of Okehampton, who died at Recks Park (which he leased from the Mayor and Corporation, and where his widow, Mary, was living in 1775), in 1751 ? He had two sisters, Hannah (?) and Frances, whose descendants have portraits of a Mr. Clarke - his daughter - and her hus- band, Mr. Dodge, the grandfather, father and mother, I believe, of William, who left no children.