Bagshawe Family Muniments

Scope and Content

Family and estate muniments of the Bagshawe family.

The Bagshawes played a prominent part in local and county affairs within Derbyshire and Yorkshire, and historians of those areas, as well as economic and social historians, will find much of value among the numerous household, business and estate records. There are large numbers of deeds and estate papers for properties in Derbyshire, particularly in Castleton, Chapel-en-le-Frith, Ford, Hope, Norton and Wormhill; and in Ecclesall Bierlow, Fulwood and Sheffield in Yorkshire.

The collection also contains important material on military history, particularly on military service in Ireland and India in the mid-18th century and the American War of Independence, and on economic history (e.g. lead mining in Derbyshire during the 18th century). There are several volumes of sermons, treatises and journals of the 'Apostle of the Peak' and other early Nonconformist ministers.

The Bagshawe muniments consist of two elements: first, the archives accumulated by members of the family in the administration of their private, estate and business concerns, and, secondly, correspondence, papers and records of all kinds acquired from extraneous sources by William H. G. Bagshawe.

The earliest items date from the 15th century, but the bulk of the collection is of the 17th, 18th and early 19th centuries. The Bagshawes played a prominent part in local and county affairs within Derbyshire and Yorkshire. A considerable quantity of material has survived for most of the individual members of the main family line, from William Bagshawe (1686-1756) to Rev. William Bagshawe (1763-1847).

The military papers of Colonel Samuel Bagshawe (1713-62) comprise some 2500 items, constituting perhaps one of the largest and certainly one of the most important collections relating to the military history of the mid-18th century (BAG/2/1-2, BAG/2/4-6, BAG/15/2). They illustrate many aspects of military life and administration at this time, with particular reference to life in the Gibraltar garrison in the 1730s, and service in Ireland and India in the 1740s and 1750s. Samuel Bagshawe's East India papers comprise nearly 600 items contained in two large volumes, with correspondence relating to the 93rd Regiment, muster rolls, returns, regimental accounts and receipts, and other military papers.

The letters, papers and accounts of Lord John Murray (1711-87) and Lieutenant-General William Murray (d. 1818) also contain much material of interest to military historians (BAG/5-6, BAG/17-18). Lord John Murray, son of the 1st Duke of Atholl, was for over 40 years Colonel of the 42nd Highlanders (the Black Watch). Papers include regimental orders, accounts, correspondence and lists of officers, 1743-1785.

The collection contains several volumes of MS sermons, treatises and journals by Rev. William Bagshawe (1628-1702), the 'Apostle of the Peak' (BAG/23/1, BAG/25/7/1-3), Samuel Gardiner, Prebendary of Lichfield, 1660-80 (BAG/12/2/1), and some early nonconformist preachers, 1748-1774 (BAG/12/2/3). The lengthy journals of Catherine Bagshawe, 1792-1826, have a strong religious and devotional content (BAG/12/1/15). There are numerous other papers relating to churches and churchmen.

Among the many financial records in the collection are several relating to mining, particularly lead mining, in Derbyshire in the 18th century (BAG/8/3, BAG/8/5, BAG/12/59-61), and volumes of building accounts of the architect Sir Jeffry Wyatville concerning the building of Banner Cross, the Yorkshire seat of the Murray family, which Wyatville is said to have considered his finest work (BAG/12/1/30-34). There is also material relating to Arthur Young, perhaps the greatest English writer on agriculture, and his son, Rev Arthur Young (BAG/3/16, BAG/22/6).

The archive contains a substantial quantity of deeds and documents relating to numerous properties in Derbyshire and Yorkshire and a smaller number of deeds for other counties:

  • Cheshire: Birtles (BAG/24/1/1); Henbury (BAG/24/1/1); High Legh (BAG/13/1/1); Marple (BAG/13/1/2-3); Over Alderley (BAG/24/1/1); Prestbury (BAG/13/1/4).
  • Cumberland (Cumbria): Brunsketh (BAG/13/2/1-17); Carlisle (BAG/13/2/18-19); Tarraby (BAF/13/2/20).
  • Derbyshire: Alton (BAG/24/2/1); Ashford (BAG/13/3/1); Ashover (BAG/13/3/2); Bagshaw (BAG/13/3/3-30); Barlow (BAG/24/2/2); Birchover (BAG/24/2/3); Bakewell (BAG/13/3/31-36); Bolsover (BAG/13/3/37-39, 24/2/4); Bonsall (BAG/13/3/40-41, 24/2/5); Bradwell (BAG/13/3/42-50); Brampton (BAG/13/3/51-52, 24/2/6); Bretton (BAG/24/2/7); Brownside (BAG/13/3/53-67, 24/2/8); Buxton (BAG/13/3/68, 24/2/9); Castleton (BAG/13/3/69-102, 24/2/10-24); Chapel-en-le-Frith (BAG/13/3/103-287, 24/2/25-34); Chelmorton (BAG/24/2/53-54); Chesterfield (BAG/13/3/288-296, 24/2/35-44); Chinley (BAG/13/3/297-298); Dale Head (BAG/13/3/299-305); Denby (BAG/13/3/306); Derby (BAG/24/2/45); Dore (BAG/13/3/307-315); Dronfield (BAG/13/3/316-317, 24/2/46-48); Eckington (BAG/13/3/318-327); Edale (BAG/13/3/328-332, 24/2/49); Elmton (BAG/13/3/333-334); Elton (BAG/13/3/335); Eyam (BAG/24/2/50); Fairfield (BAG/13/3/336-337, 24/2/51-52); Flagg (BAG/24/2/53-54); Ford (BAG/13/3/338-401, 24/2/55-70); Hasland (BAG/13/3/402-404); Hemsworth (BAG/24/2/71); High Peak (BAG/13/3/405-409, 24/2/72-78); Hope (BAG/13/3/410-431, 24/2/79); Great and Little Hucklow (BAG/13/3/432, 24/2/80-82); Killamarsh (BAG/24/2/83); Kinder (BAG/13/3/433); Litton (BAG/13/3/434); Mapperley (BAG/13/3/435); Matlock (BAG/13/3/436-437); Monsal Dale (BAG/24/2/84); Newbold (BAG/13/3/438); Norton (BAG/13/3/439-459, 24/2/85-98); Palterton (BAG/13/3/460); Peak Forest (BAG/13/3/461-466, 24/2/99-100); Rushup (BAG/13/3/467-472, 24/2/101); Scarcliffe (BAG13/3/473-474); Slackhall (BAG/13/3/475-488, 24/2/102); Stanton (BAG/13/3/489-492); Staveley (BAG/13/3/493-497); Stoney Middleton (BAG/13/3/498); Tapton (BAG/13/3/499); Tideswell (BAG/13/3/500-506, 24/2/103); Totley (BAG/13/3/507-510); Troway (BAG/13/3/511-514); Walton (BAG/13/3/515-518); Wheston (BAG/13/3/519-520); Whittington (BAG/13/3/521); Whitwell (BAG/24/2/104); Wirksworth (BAG/13/3/522-523); Wormhill (BAG/13/3/524-622, 24/2/105-117); River Wye (BAG/24/2/118).
  • Herefordshire: Hereford (BAG/24/3/1).
  • Huntingdonshire: Pidley (BAG/13/6/1).
  • Lancashire: Manchester (BAG/13/4/1-2); Newton Heath (BAG/24/4/1); Wigan (BAG/24/4/2).
  • Leicestershire: Ashby-de-la-Zouch (BAG/13/5/1-2).
  • Lincolnshire: Barkston School (BAG/13/6/1-3); Swarby (BAG/13/6/4); general (BAG/13/6/5-6).
  • London (BAG/13/7/1-3).
  • Nottinghamshire: Gringley (BAG/13/8/1); Harworth (BAG/13/8/2); Hesley (BAG/13/8/3-6); Limpool (BAG/13/8/7-9); Misterton (BAG/13/8/10); Ordsall (BAG/13/8/11).
  • Oxfordshire: Culham (BAG/13/9/1).
  • Yorkshire: Barnoldswick (BAG/13/10/1); Bawtry (BAG/13/10/2); Billingley (BAG/13/10/3); Bradfield (BAG/13/10/4); Bramley (BAG/13/10/5); Brock Holes (BAG/13/10/6-8); Button Hill (BAG/24/5/1-3); Dodworth (BAG/13/10/9); Doncaster (BAG/24/5/4-5); Earby (BAG/13/10/10); Ecclesall Bierlow (BAG/13/10/11-148, 24/5/6-9); Firbeck (BAG/13/10/149); Fulwood (BAG/13/10/150-192); Hallam (BAG/13/10/193-196, 24/5/10-11); Hatfield (BAG/13/10/197); Linton (BAG/13/10/198-199); Oughtibridge (BAG/13/10/200); Rawmarsh (BAG/13/10/201-209); Rossington (BAG/13/10/210); Salterforth (BAG/13/10/211); Sheffield (BAG/13/10/212-226); Smallfield (BAG/13/10/227-231); Stumperlow (BAG/13/10/232-233); York (BAG/13/10/234-242, 24/5/12).

Of the documents added by William H. G. Bagshawe to the muniments, the most important section is that concerning the Caldwells of Castle Caldwell co. Fermanagh, Ireland, to whom the Bagshawes were related by marriage (BAG/3). This comprises 3416 items, ranging in date from the time of the 1st Baronet, Sir James Caldwell (c.1630-1717), to that of the 5th, Sir John Caldwell (1756-1830). They exhibit the variety typical of the archives of a landed family, and include personal correspondence, business and estate papers, legal and financial records, and household accounts and inventories. They constitute an excellent source for studies of the Anglo-Irish gentry in the 18th and early 19th centuries.

Sir James Caldwell, 4th Baronet (c.1722-84), corresponded with many leading figures of his day, including George Townshend, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, Dr Samuel Johnson, Dr John Hawkesworth, David Garrick and Arthur Young. The archive contains many of Sir James's letter books (BAG/3/6-12) and over 1,500 letters addressed to him (BAG/3/13-20), besides manuscript and printed copies of 25 of his pamphlets (BAG/3/21), and some 400 letters from various correspondents to his wife, Lady Elizabeth Caldwell (d. 1778) (BAG/3/29-32).

The military papers of Lieutenant-General Sir John Caldwell (1756-1830) include material relating to the American War of Independence, 1774-1776 (BAG/3/39).

Administrative / Biographical History

The Bagshawes were one of the oldest families in Derbyshire. They held estates at Abney in the parish of Hope, and at Ridge in Chapel-en-le-Frith from at least the 14th century. Later they are found at Wormhill and Litton in Tideswell parish, Hucklow in Hope parish, Ford in Chapel-en-le-Frith parish, and the Oakes in Norton parish, among other places.

Members of the family included the Rev. William Bagshawe (1628-1702), the 'Apostle of the Peak', and Colonel Samuel Bagshawe (1713-62), who had a distinguished military career in Gibraltar, Ireland and India.

Rev William Bagshawe (1628-1702) served as vicar of Glossop from 1652 until his ejection in 1662 under the Act of Uniformity. For the next 40 years he lived at Ford, preaching the Gospel and conducting services throughout the Peak District of Derbyshire, which activities earned him the title `Apostle of the Peak'. Several warrants were issued for his arrest during periods of persecution, but he either escaped elsewhere or the warrants were quashed by sympathetic magistrates. He was a prolific writer of sermons and tracts, and is regarded as one of the leading Nonconformist figures of the 17th century.

Colonel Samuel Bagshawe (1713-62) had a distinguished military career, serving with the 39th Regiment of Foot in Gibraltar, Ireland and India. For some time he was second-in-command in the East Indies and later he raised his own regiment, the 93rd, in Ireland.

The Bagshawes were related by marriage to two other notable families, the Caldwells of Castle Caldwell co. Fermanagh, Ireland, and the Murray family. The Caldwells were allied to the Bagshawe family through the marriage in 1751 of Catherine, younger daughter of Sir John Caldwell, 3rd Baronet, to Colonel Samuel Bagshawe (1713-62). The baronetcy was bestowed upon James Caldwell of Wellsborough co. Fermanagh in 1683, and became extinct on the death in 1858 of the 7th Baronet, Sir Henry John Caldwell, then resident in Canada. The first five baronets were successive sheriffs of Fermanagh.

After a military and diplomatic career abroad (he was created a Count of the Holy Roman Empire in 1749), Sir James Caldwell, 4th Baronet (c.1722-84), involved himself in the political, social and economic affairs of Britain and Ireland and in the pursuit of these interests and the advancement of his family he came into contact with many of the leading literary and social figures of late 18th century, such as Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, Dr Samuel Johnson, Dr John Hawkesworth, David Garrick and Arthur Young.

In 1798 Rev William Bagshawe married Anne Murray née Foxlowe, sister of Lieutenant-General William Murray (formerly Foxlowe) of Banner Cross, Yorkshire. William Foxlowe had adopted the name Murray in 1782 upon his marriage to the Hon Mary Murray, only daughter of Lord John Murray, son of the 1st Duke of Atholl. Lord John Murray had a distinguished military career, serving as Colonel of the 42nd Highlanders (the Black Watch) for over 40 years, and being promoted to the rank of General in 1770.


The collection has been arranged into three main divisions, with subsidiary sections:

BAG/1-11, Correspondence and papers, arranged under the individual members of the family with, where feasible, subdivisions according to subject, e.g. family, relations, business, military, peerage, ecclesiastical.

  • BAG/1: William Bagshawe (1686-1756) and his wife Mary, née Wingfield (d. 1754): correspondence and papers, 1694-1760;
  • BAG/2: Colonel Samuel Bagshawe (d. 1762): correspondence and papers, 1712-1769;
  • BAG/3: Caldwell family: correspondence and papers, 1574-1830;
  • BAG/4: Anne Bagshawe, née Foxlowe (d. 1844): correspondence and papers, 1743-1848;
  • BAG/5: Lord John Murray (d. 1787) and his wife Mary, née Dalton (d. 1765): correspondence and papers, 17th century-1786;
  • BAG/6: Lieutenant-General William Murray, formerly Foxlowe (d. 1818): correspondence and papers, 1780-1825;
  • BAG/7: Hon. Mary Murray (d. 1803): correspondence and papers, 1774-1801;
  • BAG/8: Bagshawes of the Oakes and Castleton: correspondence and papers, 1653-1803;
  • BAG/9: Samuel Bagshawe (d. 1804) and his wife Catherine, née Inkster (d. 1828): correspondence and papers, 1726-1829;
  • BAG/10: Rev. William Bagshawe of Ford Hall and Banner Cross (d. 1847): correspondence and papers, 1794-1848;
  • BAG/11: Miscellaneous correspondence and papers, 18th-19th centuries.

BAG/12: Manuscript volumes: arranged into two series, family and estate, and miscellaneous, 1666-1866.

BAG/13: Deeds and documents: arranged alphabetically by county, within each county alphabetically by place, and within each place chronologically, 1423-1849 [bulk 17th-19th centuries].

BAG/14-24: The additional deposits received in 1952-1955 are treated separately, each section being arranged in a similar way to the original deposit:

  • BAG/14: William Bagshawe (1686-1756) and his wife Mary, née Wingfield (d. 1754): supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/15: Colonel Samuel Bagshawe (d. 1762): supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/16: Anne Bagshawe, née Foxlowe (d. 1844): supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/17: Lord John Murray (d. 1787): supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/18: Lieutenant-General William Murray, formerly Foxlowe (d. 1818), and his wife Mary (d. 1803): supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/19: Bagshawes of the Oakes: supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/20: Samuel Bagshawe (d. 1804) and his wife Catherine, née Inkster (d. 1828): supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/21: Rev. William Bagshawe of Ford Hall and Banner Cross (d. 1847): supplementary correspondence and papers;
  • BAG/22: Supplementary miscellanea;
  • BAG/23: Supplementary manuscript volumes;
  • BAG/24: Supplementary deeds and documents.

The small additional deposit received in 1968 forms the final section, BAG/25, which is currently uncatalogued.

Access Information

The collection is open to any accredited reader.

Acquisition Information

The bulk of the collection was deposited in the John Rylands Library by Major F. E. G. Bagshawe of Ford Hall in April 1950; further deposits were made by Major Bagshawe in 1952, 1953, 1955 and 1968.

Other Finding Aids

Published handlist, F. Taylor, Hand-List of the Bagshawe Muniments Deposited in the John Rylands Library (Manchester: John Rylands Library, 1955).

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopies and photographic copies of material in the archive can be supplied for private study purposes only, depending on the condition of the documents.

A number of items within the archive remain within copyright under the terms of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988; it is the responsibility of users to obtain the copyright holder's permission for reproduction of copyright material for purposes other than research or private study.

Prior written permission must be obtained from the Library for publication or reproduction of any material within the archive. Please contact the Head of Special Collections, John Rylands Library, 150 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3EH.

Custodial History

The collection was previously in the custody of Major F. E. G. Bagshawe of Ford Hall near Chapel-en-le-Frith, Derbyshire. Many of the documents were collected together in the 19th century by William H. G. Bagshawe, who was keenly interested in the family's genealogy and sought to bring together all the surviving records of the principal and subsidiary branches of the Bagshawe family and of related and allied families. Thus the archives from Ford Hall include the records of the Caldwell family of Castle Caldwell co. Fermanagh, Ireland, which were purchased by W. H. G. Bagshawe before Castle Caldwell was sold in 1877, and the papers of Lord John Murray (1711-87), Lieutenant-General William Murray (d.1818), and the Hon. Mary Murray (d.1803).


No further accruals are expected.

Related Material

Sheffield Archives holds deeds and family and estate papers of the Bagshawe family of The Oakes, Norton and Wormhill, Derbyshire, 14th-20th centuries (ref: OD).


A history of the family was published by William H. G. Bagshawe, The Bagshawes of Ford: A Biographical Pedigree (London: Mitchell and Hughes, 1886). This contains extracts from documents destroyed by the author when he sorted the family papers. A typescript index to the volume was prepared by Major F. E. G. Bagshawe in 1950. See also W. H. G. Bagshawe, A Memoir of William Bagshawe of Ford Hall, Styled 'The Apostle of the Peak' (London: Mitchell and Hughes, 1887).

Several articles have been published on the Bagshawes and related families, or have used the archive as source material:

John Cunningham and Margaret Whalley, 'Queries against Major General Kirke' [concerning Sir James Caldwell], The Irish Sword: Journal of the Military History Society of Ireland, 16.64 (1996), 208-16.

John G. Gazley, 'The Reverend Arthur Young, 1769-1827: Traveller in Russia and Farmer in the Crimea', Bulletin of the John Rylands Library, 38.2 (1956), 360-405.

James Hayes, 'The Military Papers of Colonel Samuel Bagshawe (1713-62)', Bulletin of the John Rylands Library, 39.2 (1957), 356-89.

Robert Halsband, 'Lady Mary Wortley Montagu as a Friend of Continental Writers', Bulletin of the John Rylands Library, 39.1 (1956), 57-74.

John Roach, 'The 39th Regiment of Foot and the East India Company, 1754-1757', Bulletin of the John Rylands Library, 41.1 (1958), 102-38.

R. B. Schofield, 'Bagshawe v. The Leeds to Liverpool Canal Company: A Study in Engineering History, 1790-99', Bulletin of the John Rylands University Library of Manchester, 59.1 (1976), 188-225.

F. Taylor, 'Johnsoniana from the Bagshawe Muniments in the John Rylands Library: Sir James Caldwell, Dr. Hawksworth, Dr. Johnson, and Boswell's Use of the "Caldwell Minute"', Bulletin of the John Rylands Library, 35.1 (1952), 211-47.

Paul L. Stevens, A King's Colonel at Niagara, 1774-1776: Lieutenant-Colonel John Caldwell and the Beginnings of the American Revolution on the New York Frontier (Youngstown, New York: Old Fort Niagara Association, 1987).