Will of George Hawley, grocer, 1821 (proved 1837)

National Archives, PROB 11/1880/49

This is the last Will and testament of me George Hawley of Winslow in the County of Buckingham Grocer made when of sound mind memory and understanding in manner following namely I give and devise unto my dear Wife Hannah Hawley all that my messuage or tenement buildings hereditaments and premises now in my own occupation and all my other real Estate whosoever and wheresoever to hold the same unto my said Wife Hannah Hawley her heirs and assigns for ever also I give and bequeath all and every of my Personal Estate and effects unto my said wife Hannah Hawley to and for her own use and benefit and lastly I do hereby nominate constitute and appoint my said wife Hannah Hawley Executrix of this my Will In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal the fourth day of July one thousand eight hundred and twenty one                              George Hawley.

Signed sealed published and declared by the said George Hawley the testator as and for his last Will and testament in the presence of us who in his presence at his request and in the presence of each other have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses                         F Budd  Mary Budd  &   Jno Budd

Proved at London the 15th. June 1837 before the Worshipful John Danbeny Doctor of Laws and surrogate by the oath of Hannah Hawley Widow the relict And the sole Executrix to whom admin was granted having been first sworn duly to adm(iniste)r    


George Hawley's grocery business was at 6 High Street, and was continued by his son James. George was 74 when he died in 1837. He married Hannah Maydon at Winslow in 1790 She was the daughter of George Maydon, butcher (d.1769), and died in 1844. The brevity of the will seems to be due to George Hawley already having made provision for his children. The manor court of 1839 actually reported that he died intestate, probably because he hadn't surrendered his copyhold property to the use of his will. He still owned houses in Horn Street (site of the Congregational Church) and Granborough which passed to Thomas as his eldest son.

Manor court 1869

Centre for Bucks Studies, D82/7 pp.119-121

Also to this Court the Homage . . .  upon their Oath present That by an Indenture bearing date the twenty fifth day of January one thousand Eight hundred and Sixty nine and made between Eliza Simco of Adstock Fields Farm in the Parish of Adstock in the County of Bucks Spinster otherwise called Eliza Hawley who some years since intermarried with William Hawley of No 39 Bridge Road Lambeth in the County of Surrey Grocer lately deceased but which marriage was considered to be illegal and Edwin Williams of No 137 Fenchurch Street in the City of London Colonial Broker of the one part and William George Hawley of Winslow in the said County of Bucks Grocer of the other part Reciting that the said William Hawley afterwards resided at Adstock Fields Farm . . .  and being seized to him and his Heirs of the Copyhold Messuage or Tenement and premises intended to be hereby bargained and sold for an Estate of inheritance to him and his heirs according to the custom of the Manor of Winslow . . .  duly made and published his last Will and Testament in writing bearing date the thirteenth day of September one thousand Eight hundred and fifty nine whereby after certain bequests to the said Eliza Simco otherwise Hawley therein described as his Wife Daughter of Thomas Simco of Goswell Street Clerkenwell in the County of Middlesex Brazier he declared that it should be lawful for his . . . Wife and . . .  Edwin Williams or the survivor of them or the heirs of such survivor or the . . . Trustees . . . of his Will to make sale and absolutely dispose of his Copyhold Estate at Winslow . . . and any other Copyhold Estate to which he should be entitled at the time of his decease . . .  either by public sale or private Contract and to . . .  execute such Conveyance or assurance . . . as should be requested . . .  for carrying such sale or disposition into effect Provided nevertheless and so that such sale . . of the said Copyhold hereditaments, be made and executed during the lives of his executors or . . . survivors . . . or within Twenty years after the decease of such survivor

And reciting that the said William Hawley departed this life on or about the twelfth day of May one thousand Eight hundred and sixty eight without having altered or revoked his said Will and the same was on the twelfth day of June one thousand Eight hundred and sixty eight proved in Her Majesty’s Court of Probate principal Registry And reciting the said Eliza Simco otherwise Hawley and Edwin Williams had contracted and agreed with . . . James George Hawley for the absolute sale to him of the Messuage . . . intended to be thereby . . .  sold . . .  for the price or sum of Seven hundred and fifty pounds It is witnessed that in pursuance of the said agreement and in consideration of the sum of Seven hundred and fifty pounds sterling to Eliza Simco otherwise Hawley and Edwin Williams in hand paid by . . .  George Hawley the receipt whereof was thereby acknowledged they . . . Eliza Simco otherwise Hawley and Edwin Williams by virtue and in exercise of the power for that purpose given to them by the thereinbefore recited Will of . . .  William Hawley deceased and of every or any  other power enabling them in that behalf did each of them bargain and sell unto . .  James George Hawley his heirs and assigns All that Copyhold Messuage . . . situate standing and being near the Market Square of Winslow aforesaid formerly in the occupation of Thomas King afterwards of George Hawley and now and for some time past in the occupation of James Hawley and . . .  James George Hawley To which said premises . . . William Hawley was admitted Tenant at a General Court Baron held in and for the said Manor on the twenty ninth day of  October one thousand eight hundred and thirty two on the Surrender of . . . George Hawley and Hannah his Wife And also all Outhouses Edifices Buildings Barns Stables Yards Gardens rights members and appurtenances whatsoever to the same Messuage . . . belonging or in any wise appertaining And all the Estate right title interest benefit claim demand whatsoever late of . . . William Hawley into and out of the same hereditaments and premises and every part thereof

To hold the same with the appurtenances unto and To the use of . . .  James George Hawley his heirs and assigns for Ever at the will of the Lord according to the custom of the said Manor by the rent suits fines heriots and other services and customs therefore due and of right accustomed Now to this Court comes . . .  James George Hawley in his own proper person and desires of the Lord of this Manor to be admitted Tenant to the premises aforesaid To whom the Lord of this Manor by the hands of his said Steward grants Seisin thereof by the Rod To have and to hold the premises aforesaid with their appurtenances to . . .  James George Hawley his heirs and assigns for Ever of the Lord by the Rod at the will of the Lord according to the Custom of this Manor by Yearly Rent of Three pence Fealty Suit of Court Heriot and other services and customs therefore due and of right accustomed And he gives to the Lord for a Fine of such his Estate so to be had in the premises Five shillings and he is thereof admitted Tenant &c and his Fealty is respited until &c.


Probate of the will of William Hawley, formerly of 38 Bridge-road Lambeth grocer but late of Adstock Field farmer, was granted to Eliza Simco of Adstock Field spinster and Edwin Williams of 6 Commercial-Sale-Rooms Mincing-lane colonial broker.  Effects under £12,000.

William Hawley married Eliza Simco at Lambeth in 1842. The reason for the marriage being "considered illegal" is not known, but was probably due to one of them already being married. Eliza continued to use the surname Hawley in the 1871 and 1881 Censuses. Eliza Hawley of Brixton aged 68 was buried at Adstock in 1883. The will of Eliza Hawley formerly Simco of 4 Lambert-road Brixton Rise, spinster, was proved on 29 Sep 1883.  Probate to Thomas Simco of 217 Isledon-road Holloway gentleman the brother and Edwin Williams of Commercial-Sale-Rooms Mincing-lane colonial broker.  Personal estate £4,732 14s.

The children of William and Eliza were:

Copyright 9 May, 2021