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Help and advice for Gloucestershire: Tobacco growing in the Cotswolds

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Tobacco Growing in the Vale of Evesham,
Winchcombe and District,
and John Stratford.
By Gerald H. Stratford.


The following chapter is a Complaint and the Answers, made by John Stratford Citizen of London, and Henry Somerscales, of Grey's Inn, London, both Gentlemen, and dated May, in the year 1621.

John Stratford and Henry Somerscales, both say that they entered into partnership with Gyles Broadway of Postlip, esquire, Near Winchcombe, County Gloucestershire, for certain grounds, taken by Timothy Gaytes, of Bishop's Cleeve, Esquire, which contained about six acres, and for which they were to pay five pounds per annum in rent. Now, Francis Thorne of Sudeley, Near Winchcombe, and Thomas Lorenge of Haynes, Gloucestershire, Gentlemen, with others, have enticed Thomas Jarvis, their Complainant's Servant, and attempted to get Thomas Lorenge's land, because it was near to the Complainant's land, and they could over look it, and pry into doings, they being ignorant in how to grow tobacco. So, the Complainants, strove to prevent this, and agreed to rent Lorenge's land, at the same rate, as they were renting Timothy Gaytes's land.

John Lorenge, held this ground off of Thomas Lorenge, by a Lease of about eight or nine years, but had no power to break it up, therefore, it was Meadow, without his Privity or Consent. So John Lorenge, plotted with Thomas Lorenge, so that Thomas Lorenge, should stand his ground, at ten pounds per acre, per annum, out of which, Thomas Lorenge, would give John Lorenge a certain sum, in payment for the consent. Henry Somerscales had thought this a high rate, and therefore viewed the land more closely, and finding some paths, did much dislike them, being a means for the losing of the tobacco, and alas, unfitting for their said Pasture, and thereby provided a mystery. Thomas Lorenge says that the paths were a Sufferance only, and that he would shut them, and fence them, one exception, being the Church Path, which he promised to ask his neighbour's, for leave to turn them into the adjacent ground, during the time of the planting and the growing of thee tobacco. Therefore, the Complainants were satisfied, and agreed on the Terms, as they had done with Gaytes. Then, Thomas Lorenge, said that he was willing to be bought out of the Partnership. The Complainants were reluctant at first, therefore Thomas Lorenge was acquainted with the wealthy people in the area, and they were not, and should be for the most part, absent from thence. When Thomas Lorenge realised what his store of two acres of tobacco would amount to, he agreed to continue in Partnership, and was to receive one hundred pounds, for his share of the tobacco grown in his own grounds, and in John Lorenge's grounds, and they entered into a Bond, accordingly for ten pounds, being the first years Rent for the two and a half acres of land, due at Lady Day last, and for the next three years, after the first year. Thomas Lorenge gave Bond to the Complainants, for the quiet enjoyment of this land. But, John Lorenge did nothing about the paths, and would not give access to his Buildings. Thomas Lorenge, did not help the Complainants, but worked in private to obstruct them. By reason of the Proclamation of the 30th of December, the Complainants could not plant the two and a half acres of Thomas Lorenge's land for any longer than one year. But, Thomas Lorenge, demands fulfillment of the Bond, and Rent, yet the land is not worth forty shillings per acre, per year. Therefore we ask for Justice.

There then followed interrogations on behalf of John Stratford and Henry Somerscales Esquires.

How many pounds of tobacco, did they get from Thomas Lorenge's two acres of land.? Is this the letter that the carrier brought with the crop of tobacco from the Plaintiff's Servant, Richard Freeman?

What should Thomas Lorenge's fourth part of the gain been, expenses deducted,?

If Thomas Lorenge had not been restrained from planting tobacco, within ten miles of Bishop's Cleeve, is it not likely he would have gained little by growing tobacco.?

Have you not heard of Divers Gentlemen and others, that made loss, and repented that they ever planted tobacco?

Did Henry Somerscales pay Sir John Tracy more than his tobacco was worth? If more what reason moved him to do this?

The Case continued on the 14th of May 1621, with Interrogations, sent with a covering letter dated that day. They were Administered on behalf of John Stratford and Henry Somerscales, Gentlemen, Complainants, against Thomas Lorenge, Defendant. Thomas Lorenge being the land owner and John Lorenge the Tenant.


  • Do you know of a Bargain between these three men to plant eight acres of tobacco.?
  • How many acres were Lorenges, and how many were John Lorenges.?
  • Did not the Agreement mention that two acres was of Thomas Lorenge, and six acres of John Lorenge, and was not the planting intended to be a Partnership.?
  • Did John Lorenge and Thomas Lorenge, promise the Complainants that there were paths through parts of the said lands of John Lorenge, which would be stopped up, and that they would do their best to see that the Church Path, through the said Lands, were turned into some other good use.?
  • And, were the Paths diverted, or did they afterwards refuse to divert them, to the hindrance of tobacco growing.?
  • Did Thomas Lorenge, or John Lorenge, promise the Complainants part of the Barn of John Lorenge, for the housing of their tobacco,?
  • Was the promises kept, or broken.?
  • Did any Tenant of Bishop's Cleeve, or any other person have Common of Passage, for their cattle, in any of John Lorenge's six acres, set out for the tobacco planting.?
  • At what time of the year was the land planted.?
  • What time of the year were the fences broken down by claiming Common of Passage, and cattle driven into the ground, and the crops destroyed.?
  • What was the value of the land to let for crops, other than tobacco.?
  • Did Thomas Lorenge say he did let the two acres for tobacco planting for ten pounds per acre, of that, he could never before have got four pounds for the land per acre.?
  • How near before this Bargain was the land sowed with woad or corn.?
  • How much of the six acres of land of John Lorenges was made to the Complainants, as being subject to Common, with the field adjoining there unto, according to the Season.?
  • Did you not on Strove Tuesday, 1618, tell John Lorenge, that he should not divert the paths through the six acres, near the house, and that those who planted would be disturbed because The Butts Parcel of the six acres was Common.?
  • Were you not at the measuring of certain grounds lying as, or near the backside of John Lorenge of Bishop's Cleeve.?
  • Was not a Plot, being, Short Butts, adjoining to the ground of John Lorenge, upon one side, and the Common Field, upon the other Parcel of Land.?
  • Did not the plot, being Short Butts, be in tillage and tenure.?
  • How many is there of these Butts, and how many acres are The Butts, and how many the rest of the ground.?
  • Did not John Lorenge or Thomas Lorenge, tell you for what purpose the ground was to be let.?
  • Did you know or hear that Thomas Lorenge did warn John Lorenge to look into the Lease, and take notice that he did not move in, cutting down the trees, or breaking up the ground, than he might.?

A Deposition of Witnesses, was taken at Winchcombe, County Gloucestershire on the 4th of June 1621.
Before Thomas Deanes, William Drinkwater, William Beal, and Thomas Hawkins, Gentlemen.

The first being Richard Yeareton, of Cleeve, a Yeoman, aged 60 years.
He said that he had heard of the Bargain, and says that of the six acres, one called The Butts, which contain half an acre is Commonable to the inhabitants of Bishop's Cleeve, in such times as the fields adjoining are Commonable, that is, from August, the first, until Candlemas following, for three years together, and the fourth year Common all year. The place called The Butts, was planted with tobacco by John Lorenge, and that this Deponent and others, that had Common there, there being a fallow year, did break up the mounds, did put in their cattle, and hereby destroyed the tobacco.

Two little grounds of the Defendants, before they were broken up were worth between four to five pounds per acre, lying in Pasture Ground. The parcel of ground of the Defendant being two acres, or there about, one where of he remembereth was sowed with woad, some twenty years since, and the other he remembereth was not sowed at all, He agrees that on Shrove Tuesday, before the planting of tobacco, he told John Lorenge, he should not put by, or divert the paths, in the part of the grounds called The Craffal Parcel, of the six acres of John Lorenge, and that The Butts were the Common. John Lorenge did speak to him for his good will therein. Whereupon the Deponent answered that he could not consent. John Lorenge offered his consideration for his good will therein, but concluded not upon anything, and so broke off. He agrees that John Lorenge was warned by Thomas Lorenge to look to his Lease.

Further questions and Statements were then made and asked.

  • Do you know what sum of money Sir John Tracy did sell his tobacco for to Mr. Somerscales, and like so, what sum of money did Mr. Gaytes of Cleeve sell his plot of tobacco for to Mr. Somerscales?
  • Was Mr. Somerscales in his present sense that time he bought the same of Mr. Gaytes, as at other times.?
  • Do you really believe he was a great loser by both the said Bargains.?
  • You, having since thence, seen, and heard how bad the time has been to sell, although they happened well in putting off them to him, as you honestly believe, many others had planted tobacco, were losers. If not so, have you not heard that many others were little gainers by planting tobacco, and might not Thomas Lorenge, have lost by planting, if he not entered Bond by the Plaintiff, not to plant the same,?

Depositions taken at Winchcombe, County Gloucestershire on the 16th of June 1621, on behalf of John Stratford and Henry Somerscales, Gentlemen.

Thomas Drinkwater, of Friday Street, London, a Salter, aged 24 years.

Said, that he has known John Stratford for six years, since 1615, and Henry Somerscales for three years, since 1618, and Lorenge for one year since 1620. In the February of 1619, he received a letter from Richard Freeman, dated the 8th of February, whereby Freeman, signified that Thomas Drinkwater, should receive to the use of the Complainant John Stratford, by one Tanner,, a Carrier, who brought the said letter, three packs of tobacco, containing six hundred pounds to the hundredweight, and a quantity of one pack, containing one hundred pounds and one quarter of a hundred and eight pounds of tobacco, which four packs of tobacco which this Deponent received from the carrier, Edingley. He weighed the said packs, and found that there was in all eight hundred and nineteen pounds of tobacco, after one hundred pounds to the hundred weight. Which tobacco, as it seemed, by the said letter was the parcel of tobacco that had been grown upon the ground of the Defendants, who had let two acres of ground to the Complainants. In the letter now shown him, dated the 8th of February 1619, is the very same letter from the carrier. Evidently, John Stratford had also tobacco growing in other parts, elsewhere.

The Rent and Charge for the crop of tobacco for one year, on Thomas Lorenge's land was twenty nine pounds, and the crop[ being eight hundred and nineteen pounds, was worth as it was delivered by the carrier, at two shillings per pound, that is eight pounds eighteen shillings and there abouts. If Thomas Lorenge had kept his share in the Partnership, his profit would have been Rent and Charges deducted, net, of thirteen pounds, four shillings and sixpence. He thinks that Thomas Lorenge had been allowed to plant tobacco freely, he might have lost, or made only small gains, for some men in Cleave, attempting to plant tobacco there about's, have rather lost than gained thereby, and in his opinion of the Complainant was that he had far more skill to planting and ordering the tobacco than the Defendant.

Edward Stratford of Winchcombe, a Gentleman, aged 30 years.

Said, he had known the Complainant and the Defendant a very long time. He did oversee the planting of the tobacco on behalf of Henry Somerscales, plus the watering, pruning and weeding, of the tobacco, in the next Parish to Cleeve, and, there was loss made by the crop of between fifteen and sixteen acres. Rent and Charge, of one acre of that crop. One acre, was not worth ten pounds per acre, at the most, when sold, upon the parcel of tobacco that had grown upon the ground of the Defendants, who had let two acres of the ground. And, if the Plaintiff had sold the crop of sixteen acres on the ground, he would have lost one hundred pounds.

Thomas Lorenge, could well have lost, in growing tobacco, for he was less skilled in growing it, than the Plaintiff. Henry Somerscales, gave to Sir John Tracy, more for his part of the tobacco, than it was worth, therefore, the tobacco hanging up in Sir John Tracy's houses, Mr.. Somerscales would not order it, and took after it, as they would, but the mystery and skills would be discovered by some of Sir John Tracy's servants, and so Mr. Henry Somerscales thought he might afterwards be much hindered thereby, in his tobacco business, and to have the same, entire to himself, he was willing as this Deponent conceives, to give Sir John Tracy the more money and so to have the whole to himself.

Robert Drinkwater, of Friday Street, London, aged 24 years was next.

He said he had known the Complainant for four years, since 1617, and the Defendant two years, since 1619.

He agrees that eight hundred and twenty nine pounds of tobacco, grew on the two acres of Thomas Lorenge's land at one hundred pounds per hundred weight. This was the only crop taken on this piece of land, so far as he knows. He does not know the cost of cultivation, but when it comes to London, it is worth two shillings per pound, that is to say, eighty pounds worth and some odd money. He thinks that Thomas Lorenge's profit would have been about sixteen pounds.

The rest is the same Testimony as Edward Stratford's information to the mystery and skills.

A Replication of Complaints to the Bill of Complaint.

  • They say that Lorenge promised to stop up the paths, and divert the Church Path. He did not fulfil those promises.
  • They paid the ten pounds ordered by the Council of March, for the sake of peace.
  • The said two acres evidently had a house, and barn there on, previously let at four pounds per annum.
  • The ground shortly before the Bargain, had been ploughed and sown with woad.
  • They say that the Restriction on him to plant tobacco, was not made in the Agreement, but later.

Exception against Thomas Lorenge's answers.

It is alleged that the land for tobacco, is worth forty shillings per acre, for no other purpose than for tobacco. Where as after the Rate of five pounds per acre, per annum, is to be paid for the same Bond.

Not answered at all by either Parties.

It is alleged that the land was taken for the planting of tobacco, and for no other purpose

Not answered at all by either Parties.

signed Edward Trotman.

There follows the Answer by Thomas Lorenge which goes over all the ground which had been noted in the Interrogation.

Giles Broadway, of Postlip Hall, Near Winchcombe, then took the Stand. He was at this time 44 years of age, and had bought the Manor of Bishop's Cleeve in 1606, from Peter Van Lore and William Blake, and resold it again in 1624, to Giles Brydges, late Lord Chandos. Giles Broadway died in 1637.

He says, that in about January, two years ago, in 1618, the Defendant, and Complainant, had made a Bargain for the planting of tobacco on three acres of ground in Bishop's Cleeve, as a Parcel of the Defendant's Land, as also upon six acres of the Defendants, then in the possession of John Lorenge. The Document shown to him was agreed to be a true copy of the Agreement. It was subscribed by the Complainant in the presence of Thomas Holford, and John Baineby, written there of, but the Defendant, receiving the Agreement, from the Deponent, refused to agree to the last Article in it, because it was contrary to the Agreement, they had made by word of mouth.

The Defendant agreed to try and get consent of their neighbour's, to divert the path onto John Lorenge's land, and, if they failed, they would hedge it up, in the manner of a Lane. But, in fact the path was neither turned nor hedged, for that the Complainants refused to give John Lorenge, Security of Bond, for payment of the yearly Rent, promised by him. He says the Defendant promised the Complainant and the Deponent, his housing and barn in Bishop's Cleeve, for the planting of tobacco, which he accordingly performed, but he had not heard of any promise at all by John Lorenge.

The next part does not make any sense. No hand to this Deponent. The Complainant and Thomas Lorenge, neither doth any such thing appear upon the Agreement.

Upon the fore said differences, for beainty (sic) between the Complainants, and John Lorenge's procured process, against the Complainants, before His Majesty's Council, in the Marches, for the security of his money. Where upon the matter referred, by the consent of both parties, to the final ordering of one Giles Carter, Esquire, it was by him ordered, that the Complainants, should pay into John Lorenge's hand the sum of ten pounds, and here upon, John Lorenge should release them of the said Agreement with him. Which in both sides was performed. And, shortly after John Lorenge, Tenant and Farmer, and Francis Thorne, of this Deponent's Servant, agreed together to plant one piece of ground, of John Lorenge's, called The Butts, a Parcel of the said six acres, containing by estimate, of half an acre. And, so did plant the same, at their own costs, with tobacco, without any cost, or loss to the Complainants.

For any Common Pasture, in any of the said Grounds, it is not material to be answered into, because, the Bargain between the Complainants, and John Lorenge, was not dissolved. Also, Henry Somerscales went into the grounds, called The Butts, with this Deponent, which is Commonable, and being told the same that it was Commonable, he gave a Fillip (sic) or Philish (sic) with his finger's, and said that he did not care for that ground. We will fetch so much tobacco out of the Close, that should make them all savers, and gainers, thereby.

Timothy Gaytes, of Bishop's Cleeve, Esquire aged 40 years.

Says that his wife Katherine Gaytes, sold about half an acre of ground, planted with tobacco, to Mr. Somerscales, and Mr. Giles Broadway, Esquire's, for forty pounds, and thinketh that if the Defendants had planted his own grounds better, to the Complainant, he would have gotten thereby.

John Lorenge, of Bishop's Cleeve, Yeoman, aged 60 years.

Said that he promised to the Complainant, that all the paths should be stopped up, except, one path that was the Lane path leading towards Gotherington, which was a Common Path. The Defendant fore warned this Deponent, to look to his Lease, in respect of the ground, but only for the preservation of the tree on the same.

Robert Payne, of Winchcombe, Yeoman, aged 57 years.

He told Mr. John Stratford, after the Sealing of the Bond, that some part of the land, he knew not how much, was Common.

Bartholomew Smythe, of Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, Gentleman aged 40 years.

He measured six acres and was told it was to be let for tobacco growing to the Complainants, and Thomas Lorenge, and Giles Broadway Esquire's.

Christopher Merrett, of Winchcombe, Gloucestershire, Gentleman aged 44 years.

Thomas Lorenge, upon conference with him the Deponent, said, he had let two acres in Cleeve, to Mr. John Stratford for four years, for ten pounds per acre, and that he had never let it for four pounds before. He thinks that Thomas Lorenge, had at the end of four years, he was to have one hundred pounds from Mr. John Stratford, as far as he could remember. This is all he can recall to mind.

Witnesses for the Defendants, heard at Winchcombe, County Gloucestershire on the 4th of June 1622.

Giles Broadway of Postlip Hall, Winchcombe, Gloucestershire aged 44 years.

Said that, he knows of two parcels of ground, three acres altogether, before they were planted with tobacco, they were very fruitful, and rich grounds. He also knows of three other grounds, which John Lorenge holds for a Term of Years, being the inheritance of Thomas Lorenge. The Complainants, and this Deponent, and Thomas Lorenge, agreed to form a Partnership in planting tobacco, on the grounds of John Lorenge, and also on two parcels of the grounds of Thomas Lorenge, for four years. The Complainants implored Thomas Lorenge, to Contract with John Lorenge, for his grounds, and they all agreed that they would pay John Lorenge, for his ground, the rent of six pounds, thirteen shillings and four pence per acre, for four years, and they promised to enter into Bond, to pay the Rent accordingly.

But after this, the Complainants broke off with John Lorenge, and did not perform their Agreement, and did not conclude the Bond they had promised.

The Complainants agreed with Thomas Lorenge, for his Partnership, and for his two grounds for four years, and in condition thereof, and also therefore the Defendant was tied from planting any tobacco, within ten miles of Bishop's Cleeve, and promised to pay him one hundred and forty pounds, at certain days, then to come, and now past. And, the Complainants, entered into a Bond accordingly, Thomas Lorenge agreed not to plant tobacco within ten miles of Bishop's Cleeve. The whole Agreement was absolutely concluded, without any condition, or intention, of an abatement to be made, in case any Inhabitant, or Proclamation against the planting of tobacco, should afterwards follow. Thomas Lorenge, planted with tobacco for one year, and the Complainants got the benefit, albeit Thomas Lorenge, bore part of the charge, and in the right might have had the fourth part of the Benefit. The Complainants, ever since have enjoyed the land, but have forborne to plant tobacco.

Thomas Lorenge's grounds were planted somewhat too late, and therefore he did not have so good a crop, as he might have done, albeit it proved almost as good as any tobacco planted here about's. The Defendant was originally resolved to enter into Partnership with Mr. Thorne, to plant tobacco, but the Complainants earnestly begged him to the contrary. He had much speech with Mr. Henry Somerscales, who, sundry times said he repented that he ever Contracted with Thomas Lorenge, for his grounds in Bishop's Cleeve, but he thanked God that he had taken such order with Mr John Stratford, and that John Stratford was to discharge, and pay the money due to the Defendant.

Henry Izod, of Toddington, Gloucestershire, Gentleman, aged 57 years.

Says, that there was an Agreement, between Sir John Tracy of Toddington, Gloucestershire, Knight, and Henry Somerscales, that a certain ground, called Conygree Layes, containing eight acres, being the inheritance of Sir John Tracy, and by him in Partnership, broken up for the planting of tobacco, the same to be done, at three equal charges, but, yet such Sir John Tracy, should, disburse, all the money for planting, curing, and other pertinent things, to be done for the well ordering of the tobacco. And, that Mr. Henry Somerscales, upon the sale of the tobacco, repay the Moiety of the Charge, and for the skill, and pay Mr Henry Somerscales, in planting and curing all of the tobacco, he should have half the price of the tobacco, and pay to Sir John Tracy, half his, Sir John Tracy's charges. After the tobacco was harvested, Mr Henry Somerscales liking the same, wanted to buy Sir John Tracy's part of the same, and promised him four hundred and fifty pounds of tobacco for his share, and, he also promised to Miss Anne Tracy, the daughter of Sir John Tracy, twenty five pounds, for the payment of which four hundred and fifty pounds at certain days, limited to Sir John Tracy. John Stratford, and Henry Somerscales, and this Deponent Giles Broadway, became Bound in Bonds, and for the payment of twenty five pounds, to Anne Tracy. Somerscales gave only his Bond.

Timothy Gaytes, of Bishop's Cleeve, aged 40 years.

He admits that Henry Somerscales, paid his wife forty pounds for the tobacco of half an acre of ground. He was told by Sir John Tracy, that he was paid about four hundred pounds for the Moiety of tobacco, growing on eight acres of ground, and he believed this to be, because he has heard the same generally reported by others. He agrees that Thomas Lorenge's land was planted rather late with tobacco, but does not know what the cost of the crop was.

Interrogations to be submitted as Thomas Lorenge's Witnesses.

Thomas Lorenge's land was evidently two parcels, three acres altogether, or each piece, and it was before ploughing for tobacco, used as a Meadow.

Have you heard that the Complainants have much enriched themselves by planting tobacco.?

Are the Complainants very contentiously given, and so accounted and reputed in the County, and such as, are apt after a Plan, and correct Bargain made, to carry and draw in question, their own Agreement, and seek to infringe and frustrate the same, by Suit and Contention.?

John Lorenge of Cleeve, Gentleman, aged 60 years.

Said that, he John Lorenge, rents six acres of land of Thomas Lorenge, whose inheritance it is. He agreed to let this land for tobacco growing at six pounds, thirteen shillings and four pence per acre, the total being forty pounds. Afterwards, the Complainants did bury out Thomas Lorenge out of the Partnership. Whereupon the Complainants and Mr. Broadway, were to secure this Deponent, for his rent, which seemingly, he was content to accept. But, when John Lorenge tendered Bonds to be Sealed by them, for Security of the Rent, Mr. Stratford refused to Seal, and broke off with the Deponent. So, John Lorenge, caused the Complainants, John Stratford and Henry Somerscales to be served with Process, to appear before His Majesty's General in the Marches of Wales, for not performing his Agreement, and for Compensation, John Stratford payed John Lorenge ten pounds. Thomas Lorenge's grounds were planted for one year, by the Complainants, who has enjoyed the land ever since. Thomas Lorenge has not planted any tobacco himself, any where.

He says, that the Complainants fly from their Bargains, and has heard that they have done this with John Parsons, of Overbury, in the County of Worcestershire.

John Parsons, of Overbury, of the County of Worcestershire, aged 66 years.

Says that the Complainants, did here before, make an Absolute Agreement, with him for certain grounds of his, for the planting of tobacco, and afterwards, they differed words with him, and caused him to spend much money in Law, about the same. Francis Thome, of Sudeley, County Gloucestershire, aged 48 years.

He says, that Thomas Lorenge, had entered into Partnership with him, and came with others, about the planting of tobacco, not only in Thomas Lorenge's grounds, but also on John Lorenge's grounds. It Thomas Lorenge had not been tied in the contrary by the Complainant, also, one Mr. Harris, who was a Partner with this Deponent, in the planting of tobacco, did make his part of tobacco that grew upon the grounds that they had planted in four years after the rate of seventy pounds per acre. And, one John Harvey, and then partner of the Deponent, was offered two hundred pounds for a quantity of tobacco growing only upon two acres of ground.

John Yardington of Cleave, a Yeoman, aged 41 years.

He says that the grounds before tobacco was planted were equal in worth to the Meadow Ground.

Yardington evidently drew upon the Lease of the land four years at forty pounds. He also wrote several Bonds, conditioned for a true payment of the said rent of forty pounds per annum. When John Stratford refused to Seal the Bond, he had said he had better consider with himself, and made a vow that he would never Seal a Bond of that kind again in the future.

Thomas Guy , of Bishop's Cleeve, husbandman, aged 44 years.

Says, that the Defendants grounds were planted with tobacco, about a week before Midsummer. The Complainant, had received the tobacco after the same was dried, a Cart Load. The tobacco plants used were very bad, and he thinks they lost much thereby, for the ground being good, brought forth a very good tobacco, almost equal to the best in Cleeve.

It sounds as though Thomas Guy was involved in the actual cultivation.

William Smallman, of Gretton, in Winchcombe Parish, a Labourer aged 35 years.

The Complainants, cut and carried away the tobacco, being a Cart Load, after it was dried, and afterwards, Henry Somerscales granted the grounds to William Hobbes of Cleave, a blacksmith, until Henry Somerscales should have occasion again to break up the land for tobacco.

He evidently did not grow too many crops of tobacco in succession or maybe it was left for a short fallow.

Francis Baker, of Southam, in Cleave, a Yeoman aged 36 years.

The Defendants in way of Partnership have entered into the course of planting tobacco on his own lands, and had before, entered into speech with this Deponent then, and now Master.



Edmund Broadway of Postlip Hall, Winchcombe, County Gloucestershire, married Alice Stratford, the sister of John Stratford of Farmcote and Bushley. County Worcestershire, who had married Margaret Tracy, the daughter of Sir Robert Tracy of Toddington. Edmund Broadway and Alice Stratford had with other issue Giles Broadway, a second son who died on the 14th of March 1657, which makes Giles Broadway the cousin of John Stratford the tobacco grower.

Giles Broadway, married Anne, the daughter of John Carter of Bowle, Near Stow on the Wold, County Gloucestershire, and with other issue had a daughter Margaret, who married John Stratford, of Coscombe and Hailes, at Temple Guiting on the 19th of July 1630. This John Stratford was the fourth son of George Stratford of Hailes and Farmcote, who married Elizabeth Hobby, the daughter of William Hobby of Hailes in 1601, and lived part of his life at Hailes, and after his marriage, at Coscombe, Near Winchcombe. John Stratford's Will was proved in 1636, when he was described as being of Hailes, and he left three very young children, George, Elizabeth, and Maria.

George Stratford of Sudeley, and later of Condicote, baptised at Guiting Power on the 17th of July 1636, married Anne, the daughter of George Thorne of Sudeley.

Anthony Stratford, of Temple Guiting, County Gloucestershire, born in 1610, married as his second wife Elizabeth, the daughter of William Freeman of Cropthorn, County Worcestershire.

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Data transcribed by Colin Hinson from:
A document written by
Gerald H. Stratford in 1988.
Reproduced here by permission
© Gerald H. Stratford.