Stafford of Eyam, Foljambe Charter

by C. E. B. BOWLES, M.A.

This article was published originally in the Derbyshire Archaeological Society Journal, vol. 31, 1909; pp69-72.
References to vol 30, pp261-295 below may be found in The Staffords of Eyam.

This transcription by Rosemary Lockie © 2001

IN the history of the Staffords of Eyam, which appeared in the last Journal, it will be seen that the lines at the bottom of page 281 state that in the year 1471 an indenture was executed between Richard Stafford, cousin and heir of Robert Stafford of Eyam, and Thomas Foljambe, enumerating the contents of a box of deeds delivered to the said Thomas Foljambe to keep for Richard Stafford and his heirs. At the time the history was written I was unable to obtain further information of this indenture, but since then I have been enabled, through the kindness of Mr. Foljambe, of Osberton, to make a transcript of it. Being of some interest I give the deed in full.

It will be noticed that the deeds placed in the custody of Thomas Foljambe were five in number. Notes of the first three have by some unexplained means been preserved among the records of the Heralds' College, and were kindly placed at my disposal for the Stafford History by Somerset Herald. They will be found on pages 274, 278, and 279.[1]

Why was it that out of all the Stafford Charters so carefully preserved and handed down to their descendants, those five were selected to be placed in the custody of a trustee? Where are they now, and how did the Heralds' College obtain the substance of the first three? These are questions which naturally suggest themselves.

[Page 70]
One or two remarks on the three deeds used in the Stafford History may be of interest.

With respect to the first deed mentioned in the indenture, which was quoted on page 274, I have ascertained that Henry Bishop of Winton, one of the parties of the deed, is no other than the celebrated Cardinal Beaufort, son of John of Gaunt by Catherine Swyneford, who was Bishop of Lincoln from 1398 to 1405, when he was translated to Winchester. John Beaufort, another party to the deed, will therefore be his elder brother, who was created Earl of Somerset in 1397, and died in 1410. He was great-grandfather to Henry VII., whose title to the throne was derived through him. The title of "Sarum" is evidently a clerical error for "Somerset", as that earldom was never held by the Beauforts.

The second deed quoted in the Foljambe indenture proves how right was one of the suggestions made on page 278 as to the [identity] [of] the two names Robert Chetham and Scotton. The third deed, it will be seen, deals only with the lands acquired by John Stafford's marriage with the Roland heiress, and it will be noticed that the remaining two deeds in the Foljambe Charter are connected with the same event.

Perhaps I may be allowed here to correct two errors which appear in the Stafford History. In the deed of L'Archer of Hucklow, quoted on page 268, the second Richard should be John. In the description of the Stafford arms on pages 272 and 273, the word "on" is meaningless, and should be erased.

With respect to this coat, Gen. Wrodesley, a well-known and eminent antiquarian, remarks that "the assumption of these armorial bearings by the Staffords of Eyam seems to show that they were an offshoot of Staffords of Sandon, co. Stafford, and if that is the case, the first Richard of Eyam would be a younger son of Hervey Bagot, who married the heiress of the Staffords, and whose posterity assumed the name of Stafford. If he had been an offshoot of the old line, he would probably have held lands under the Staffords, of which there is no evidence". He adds that "the fact that [Page 71] members of this family were at this date styled Armiger is a proof that they had borne arms from their ancestors."


"This bill indented ix. day of July the year of King Edward fourth the vijth (1467).

"Richard Stafford gentleman cousin and heir of Robert Stafford Esquier late of Eyam Co. of Derby on the one part, and Thomas Foljambe Esquier of the other witnesseth that the said Richard hath delivered to the said Thomas to keep to the behoof and use of the said Richard and his heirs certain deeds and evidences in a box, that is to say

"A deed of feofment by John Stafford Esquier made to Henry late Bishop of Winchester and others or all the lands and tenements rents and services with the appurtenances that he had in the County of Derby and Lincoln whereof the date is the xxth daye of July the year of King Henry the iiijth the xth.

"Also another deed of feofment of tenements in Scoter made by Robert Cheth'm[3] of Scotton[4] to John Stafford and to Alice his wife in fee taylc [sic] whereof the date is on the Friday next afore the feast of the purification of our lady the xij yere of King Richard the second.

"Also another deed of feofment by John Stafford of Eyam and Margaret his wife made to Richard Pygot Robert Stafford and John the son of the said John and Margaret of all their lands and tenements, rents and services with their appurtenances in Roland Calfour and Eyam whereof the date is the 5th daye of November in the year of King Henry vjth the xth.

[Page 71] "Also a letter of Attorney thereto according bearing the same date.

"Also a release made by the said John Stafford of Eyam and Margaret his wife to John Stafford whereof the date is in the feast of St. John the baptist the xxiij year of King Henry VI. (1445).

"In witness thereof,[5] &c.

N.B. - The greater portion of the deeds relating to the Roland and Calver estates passed with those lands to the Eyres of Hassop. The lands still form part of the Hassop estate, and the deeds are preserved at Hassop Hall, but the three deeds referred to here are not among them.

The following extract from the Calendar of Early Chancery Proceedings in the Public Record Office published in 1906 has been sent to me by Mr. Edward Bagshawe, of Sheffield:-

Bundle 225, No. 12. "HUMFRY, SON AND HEIR OF RICHARD STAFFORD OF EYAM versus Henry Fulgeham. Detention of deeds relating to lands in Eyam."

This proves beyond all doubt that my argument contained on pages 286-7 of vol. xxx, was sound, and my contention with respect to the parentage of Humphrey Stafford correct. Thus, the only weak link in the Stafford chain is now secure. Henry Folgeham was son and heir of Thomas of the above charter. No. 39, Bundle 225, proves the marriage of Elizabeth, daughter of Humphrey Stafford, with John Cokayn, of Ashbourne.

[1] Vol. xxx. of this Journal.
[2] No. 460 in Osberton Derbyshire Tin Box; No. 1,262 in Jeayes' Derbyshire Charters.
[3] The "h" is more like a "l".
[4] Scotter and Scotton are in co. Lincoln. [Ed: Gazetteer reveals only "Scotham".]
[5] Transcribed in modern spelling from the original at Osberton, 13th July, 1908.
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