Ref no28048
TitleDeeds and documents relating to the Harford family, including the Blaise Castle estate
Date1576-1918
DescriptionThe collection includes correspondence between family members and from external contacts (mostly 19th century), deeds dating back to the 17th century relating to various lands, financial papers including ledgers and cash books (18th-19th century), journals recording various trips and visits, family papers relating to memorials to persons, personal papers including letters, papers relating to wills and settlements, and some miscellaneous items.
LevelCollection
Extent2.5 shelves
Administrative historyJohn Harford (b1502-4) rose to prosperity through the acquisition of Church lands following the Dissolution of the Monastries. Harford appears to be a variant of Hereford, also spelt Hertford, Hartford, Hariford, Hareford and Harford. In 1540 John Harford of Worcester rented a pasture named Fforlett and ten years later the Manor of Bosbury. He had five sons and four daughters and died in 1559. His wife Anne dies 1573. The intervening generations are murky but link to Charles Harford who married Mary Bushe at St. Peter's Church, Bristol, in 1656. From this marrriage the Harfords of Blaise Castle and Stapleton are descended. The Harford pedigree (in Bk/345) begins with William Harford and his wife Margaret, both of Marshfield, who were living in 1602. Several other names appear in the pedigree which explain some of the names in the records. The marriage of Edward Harford (1720-1806) to Sarah Scandrett gave rise to their son John Scandrett Harford (1754-1815). In 1815 Abraham Gray Harford became Harford-Battersby, taking the Battersby name and arms by royal license. Mary Elizabeth (who married John Battersby-Harford in 1850) is descended from Sir Richard Granville (d1591), a male descendant of Rollo, Duke of Normandy.

On their marriage, John (1754-1815) and Mary Harford settled in Bristol in the corner house on Brunswick Square where all their children were born, except Frederic and Alfred born while at Blaise. John became a partner in the Harford Bank which his father had helped to found and remained in it until his death. He was Warden of the Merchant Venturers in 1782 and Master in 1798. John Scandrett Harford purchased the estate at Blaise Castle, the inn and the blacksmith's shop in 1789 for £11,000. Three years later the ridge of rocky woodland including Goram's chair was purchased from Mr and Mrs Brooke. The present dairy garden is on the site of an older house, pulled down after the current one was built. The Harfords came to live at Blaise in spring or summer 1790. From 1795-1802 they mostly lived at Henbury. Building the new house began 20 Oct 1795, measuring 66x58 feet, the outer walls being 2 feet thick. The stables were built 1800-1801 and then the dairy, with the conservatory finished by 1806. In 1801 Eliza Pryor made her home at Blaise Castle with her aunt and uncle and died in 1811. Blaise Hamlet was built 1810-1812. John Harford died in 1815 at the age of 60 with the property valued at just under £300,000.
Access statusOpen
ArrangementThe collection has been arranged into the following classes: Correspondence, Deeds, Finance, Journals, Memorials, Personal papers, Family settlements and wills etc, and miscellaneous. As far as possible, this reflects the original order of the records
Related materialFor a detailed history of the Harfords and related famiIies see 'The Annals of the Harford Family' (Alice Harford, 1909, Bk/345, from which most of the AdminHistory has been taken) and 'A supplement to the Annals of the Harford Family' (Arthur and Lionel Harford, 1958).
AssocMaterialFor catalogue of Peterwell Estate papers held in National Library of Wales, see BRO's box file of records held in other repositories
Custodial historyDeposited in Bristol Record Office on indefinite loan by Sir Timothy Harford Bt., South House, South Littleton, Evesham, Worcs. in 1969 and by Piers S Harford, B S Stock, Son and Co., the Bristol and West Building, Broad Quay, and Stock Exchange, Bristol BS1 4DD in 1970.

Show related Persons records.

Persons
CodePersonNameDates
DS2748Harford; family
DS2749Harford; John Scandrett
DS2751Harford; John Battersby
DS2752Battersby; Abraham Gray Harford
DS2750Harford; Louisa
DS2753Harford; Mary Battersby
DS2754Harford; Mary
DS2755Battersby; Elizabeth Grey Harford
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