Will of Grant Hewiett of London and Great Horwood, merchant, 1793 (proved 1796)

National Archives PROB 11/1281/252

Grant Hewiett was the son of Grant Hewiet of Great Horwood, maltster (1702-1759), baptised in 1730. He was originally apprenticed to Henry Stuchbury, ironmonger of Winslow, but in 1763 he inherited £8,000 from his uncle George Verney, weaver of London. He also inherited his father's house in Great Horwood. He established himself as a merchant of King Street, Cheapside. He was listed as one of the leading inhabitants in 1774. He was buried on 29 Nov 1796 at Great Horwood.

His will doesn't mention Winslow directly, but refers to many people with Winslow connections.  He was the descendant of the old Winslow family of Grant.  He lived mainly in London but also kept a "country house" at Great Horwood (with a "new built house thereto adjoining"), where he held a lot of land.  Most of the will concerns London property and people, but the following details are relevant to Winslow.  The will was made on 18 Dec 1793, with a codicil on 15 Nov 1796, and it was proved on 26 Nov 1796.

The main beneficiary was "my cousin commonly called my nephew" William Verney Mallett, who was "now in the house of Mr Smiths Bankers of Aldermanbury".  He lived with Grant in London, and was to inherit £5,000 at the age of 22 (reduced to 21 in the codicil) as well as most of Grant's property.  He could ask the trustees to sell the stock "if it will not answer to carry on the business".  He was the eldest son of "my servant man" John Mallett, who inherited a life interest in Grant's farm in Great Horwood "lately purchased from Mr Clark", and his deceased wife, Grant's first cousin Elizabeth, daughter of William Verney of Winslow.  They had five younger children.  

Grant had two sisters who received bequests:

and one brother (deceased), John Hewiett, whose widow Martha was remembered in the will.  He also mentions the children (unnamed) "of my late uncles John, Henry and Grant Hewiett"; they were to have the proceeds of the sale of two cottages at Stewkley, one called the Nag's Head.

Apart from London friends, the will mentions Launcelot Wyatt of Winslow and James King of Banbury.  The latter, a shag manufacturer, was one of the executors, along with William Verney Mallett and Robert Provost of Newgate Market, salesman.  Grant's housekeeper in Great Horwood, Mrs Sarah Elvins, was to have the use of his house and other property there for her life.  The will mentions Brickhills Farm in Great Horwood, which Grant had purchased from William Verney.  The codicil makes small bequests to Mary Vickers and Betty Hogg who lived in the house in Great Horwood.

William Verney Mallett died in 1809; see his will.

Ann Hewiett, sister of Grant, was baptised at Great Horwood in 1733 and married John Harris. She was buried there in 1819, and her will was proved in 1820 (PROB 11/1624/373). John's will was proved in 1807, in which he left to his son Grant among other things "my house at Winslow which I bought of Mr John Turner" (PROB 11/1456/255). This was 1 Church Street, described as newly built in 1742. He mortgaged this property in 1771 as "John Harris the younger of Gt Horwood victualler", when it was described as a "messuage in Winslow near the West Gate of the Parish Church in the occupation of Robert Shelton or his undertenants". When John's death was reported at the 1807 manor court, he was "formerly of Winslow but late of Great Horwood Cordwainer", and he held a "Messuage and Garden adjoining to the Church Yard in Winslow formerly in the occupation of himself now of Charles Willis", which he bought in 1758 from John Turner. He was treated as intestate but "Grant Harris formerly of Great Horwood but now of College Street Westminster gent." was admitted as his eldest son and heir.  Grant Harris sold it to Charles Willis in 1808: "Messuage with Garden Barns Stables Outhouses Yards Backsides adjoining the Churchyard".

The children of Ann and John Harris who lived to adulthood were:

Grant Harris of College Street in the parish of St John the Evangelist, Westminster, made his will on 29 Feb 1812, and it was proved on 30 June 1819 (National Archives, PROB 11/1617/428). The will doesn't give an occupation. but he is listed in an 1802 directory as a plumber, and took his brother Hewiett as an apprentice in 1787. In 1806 his partnership with Francis Bowen as "plumbers and water-closet makers" was dissolved.

Grant was apprenticed to Matthew Nesham of St John the Evangelist, Westminster, plumber and glazier, in 1773. He married his daughter and took over the business. Matthew Nesham's will was proved in 1784 (National Archives, PROB 11/1123/246), in which he left his personal estate after his wife's death to his "son" Grant Harris, "trusting to his care and Diligence in manageing my said Business". Apart from various investments, his will mentions 4 freehold houses in Tufton Street Westminster; 4 leasehold houses in Marsham Street "with seven small Tenements built by me ... which ... form a part of Johnsons Place"; a leasehold tenement in Church Street, Walworth. These were left to his wife's use for her life (her will was proved in 1824), then to be sold for the benefit of his siblings and their children (he evidently had no children of his own).

Copyright 11 March, 2018