Letter of William Spooner to William Lowndes, 8 Dec 1681

Centre for Bucks Studies BAS 370/22/2 no.53

This letter was sent to William Lowndes by William Spooner, a substantial landholder in Winslow. Spooner was born in 1624, so was a contemporary of Lowndes' father Robert (b.1619). He had received an enquiry from Lowndes about whether he was interested in selling his land, and replied with a detailed list of what he would part with. This is the clearest evidence found so far about how Lowndes was able to build up his property portfolio. Spooner does not point it out, but the land was already mortgaged. Lowndes (presumably) annotated the letter with the number of half-acres included in each piece of land. Spooner hinted that he could would get a better price if he sold the land in parcels, and suggested a price of £500-£600 for the 62 acres (or 63 in Lowndes' calculations).

The sale took place and a special court was held on 26 Dec to formalise it (see BAS 376/22 no.49). The land, not described in exactly the same terms, was given as 55 acres. Lowndes recorded that he paid £461 1s 6d. This wasn't the full extent of Spooner's holdings as he inherited 80 acres from his father (see William Spooner's will, 1698 for more information).

Mr William Lownds my keind love to you & this is to lett you understand that I have received youre letter and according to youre desire I have sent you a perticular of those parcells of land that I have a minde to sell to you which are as followeth

4 Imp(rimi)s in new Mill feild in Nandidg furlong shooteing upon Addenton hedg two acres of sword ground
10 It(em) Dudslow furlong in the same feild ten ridges lying next to youre owne fowre
3 It(em) in Breach furlong three ridges
2 It(em) at Bagsbush Hedg two ridges with heards
4 It(em) at Litle Hill two acres of sword
2 It(em) in Dudslow furlong two Ridges more
1 It(em) one halfe acre of sword at Horsemead peice end
1 It(em) one land shooteing into Palmers leyes
2 It(em) [two - - - ] Ancors land
1 It(em) one forshooter in the same furlong
4 It(em) in the furlong \shoting/ to Clarks furlong headg foure lands with a pick lying to gether with heards
2 It(em) two lands with heards more in the same furlong

In Domeram feild
2 Imp(rimi)s two lands shooteing to Claydon Brook with heards
7 It(em) in Claydon way seven ridges lying next to youre owne
4 It(em) in Gars Bush plat two acres of sword Ground
6 It(em) in great Sparlow furlong six ridges lying next to your owne six
3 It(em) in Litle Sparlow three lands with heards
7 It(em) in Gores Bush furlong seven lands
1 It(em) on yeard lying next to Berry land by Claydon way side
It(em) on yeard of meddow ground at the Hams
10 It(em) on close at short layes with the hedges & heards without \being/ ten ridges

In old mill feild
[f.2] 6 Imp(rimi)s in Rush mead six ridges with the heards
2 It(em) in Mims peice two lands
4 It(em) foure lands lying to gether shooting to Mr Townesends headland
3 It(em) three Lands lying at Poors furrow at Shippon townes side next yours
1 It(em) one Ridg at Shippon Deane
1 It(em) at best way one land
4 It(em) foure ridges lying next to Thomas Deelyes sword grond
4 It(em) foure more lying to gether two sword ground & two ariable at Duggs butts
7 It(em) seven ridges shooteing to Hangs close
3 It(em) three ridges lying together shooting on a great head land of mine
10 It(em) ten ridges at Langland with a headg on them
5 It(em) at Ston layes five ridges of sword ground

These lands lye as they are sett downe heere in estimate according as they were sett downe when they came to mee from my father I could sell it out in parcells but I would sell it alltogether or else I could have a many chapmen for by parcells youre mind in youre letter I understand by your fathers words is to know about the prise I shall bee upon a very modderate terme but I guess it to bee a purchasse about 5 or 6 hundred pound there is in account six score & seven Ridges of sword ground & ariable the whole sume is threescore & two acres soe wee common & pay taxes for itt & having noe more at presentt but desireing you to considder of it betwixt this & Christmas you do poynt to com downe I rest youre loveing friend

William Spooner

Winslow December
the 8th 1681

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Copyright 16 May, 2017