The collection catalogued as DDEV numbers over 20,000 documents and falls into two basic sections: U DDEV/1-70 comprising papers relating to the Constable Maxwell (incorporating Haggerston) family and their estates centred on Everingham in the East Riding of Yorkshire and the Sherburne family who were closely connected with the Constables in the seventeenth century and U DDEV/71-81 comprising the Maxwell and Nithsdale family papers relating to their Scottish estates centred on Caerlaverock Castle and Terregles.
Of the English papers in U DDEV, sections 1-35 relate to lands and estates in Yorkshire. Papers on the following may be found: Acklam and Woodhouse Grange (1533-1781); Acklam manorial court records (1758-1800); Arras (1323-1842), including an early seventeenth century plan and the wills of William Stephenson (1461) and Robert Stephenson (1561); Atwick (1546-1652); Beverley (17th century-1811), including copies of seventeenth century inscriptions in Beverley Minster and rules for the Beverley hunt in 1808; Bielby (c.1200-1903), including the will of Thomas Gill (1764); Bubwith manor, a court charge (temp. Anne); Etton, a lease (1568); Everingham (mid-13th century-1919), including medieval charters of the de Everingham family, papers relating to property of the Constable/Constable Maxwell family as well as local schools and the Roman Catholic chapel at Everingham, 27 letters including some with the Maister family and account books of the parish constables 1830-1901 and mortuary guild 1840-74; court rolls of Everingham with Thorpe manor (1569-1914); two miscellaneous items about the history of Flamburgh (c.1582, 19th century); Gardham and Newton (1235-1700), including the gift of the convent of Meaux and some early fifteenth century seals; Hayton (1390-1729); Hotham (1622); a mid-nineteenth-century copy of the seventeenth-century rules for the Kiplingcotes race; an early eighteenth-century copy of a thirteenth century gift of title in Lissett; Market Weighton (1596-1817), including copies of the glebe terrier of the vicarage (1716-1817) and the 1807 Market Weighton and Shipton enclosure award; North Duffield (1553); the glebe terrier of the Nunburnholme rectory (1770) and the 1845 plan for the East Riding branch of the York and North Midland Railway; Rowlston (1653-1656), including the 1653 removal of the sequestration order of Sir Philip Constable's lands in Rowlston; Seaton Ross (1589-1920), including the 1674 marriage settlement of Edward Osborn, heir of the earl of Danby, and Elizabeth Bennett, the 1712 testatory settlement of the duke of Leeds for his children and the 1740 arrangements for intermarriage with the Godolphins, the wills of Richard Hebron (1721), Richard Bolton (1744), Ann Best (1766), James Silburn (1825), William Snell (1825), Hannah Frankland (1826), Robert Rook (1841), extracts from the parish registers (1673-1771) including information on the Atkinson and Ibbotson families and tenancy agreements 1798, 1801, 1804 and 1807; court records for the manor of Seaton Ross (1753-1802); Shipton (1674); Sutton on Hull and Southcoates (1628-1659); Thorpe le Street (c.1200-c.1850), including the gift of William Salvein around 1200 to the poor of St Peters in York; Wholsea (1549-1727), including the 1549 letters patent to John Ellerker for the manor of Wholsea and the rectory and advowson of North cave, sometime Priory of Kingston upon Hull, and other material relating to the Ellerker family as well as the 1604 sale documents to Philip Constable; the 1379 document granting the advowson of Wressle to Drax priory; Mortham and Rokeby (1508); Barlow (1381); Camblesforth (1458-1800); Drax (1164-late 19th century), including gifts to Drax priory, a fragment of the Great Seal 1234, letters patent to Marmaduke Constable in 1538 and some later material of the Rickard family as well as a letter of Thomas Fairfax to Marmaduke Constable about tithes on 1 December 1677; manorial records of the manor of Drax (1447-1782) including a 1657 survey and the rentals of hens and eggs from 1659-1667; Hambleton (1665); Spofforth (1534); York (1555-1700), including sixteenth-century feoffments of tenements along the drainage channel near the walls of the city. Sections 35-50 of the English papers relate to land holdings in other parts of the country as follows: medieval charters of the Poucher and Sothill families in Gloucestershire and Wiltshire (late 13th century-1427); estates in Lincolnshire as follows - Glentham (mid-13th century); Kingerby (1661); charters of the Poucher and Constable families in Middle Rasen (early 13th century-1719); the transfer of land in Osgodby from the Flamburgh to the Everingham branch of the Constable family (1510); Roxby (1287); Toft next Newton (early13th century-1850); the medieval deeds of the de Everingham family and the 16th century account books of Marmaduke Constable's bailiff in Westborough (1390, 1533-1534); West Rasen leases (1804-1857); Whisby (1603); London and Middlesex (1574-1702); Nottinghamshire (1343-1572); Oxfordshire (1650); various townships (c.1125-1971), including medieval and early modern urban property information, the 1125 gift of Alexander Paganellus to Holy Trinity Priory and the 1541 letters patent gifting to Thomas, earl of Rutland the sites of Warter Priory and St Giles Hospital in Beverley.
U DDEV/51-59 of the English papers are bonds (1555-1841); inquisitions (1398-c.1664) including various in manors originally belonging to Cardinal Wolsey and several to do with Philip Constable's recusancy; settlements (1507-1894) including several marriage settlements; wills (1456-1878) including those of the two Philip Constables of the seventeenth century and Richard Sherburne; various deeds (1272-1897) including deeds of the Paynell and Poucher families and a general pardon to John and Joan Sothill with a good impression of the great seal of Henry VI; accounts (c.1517-1959); vouchers and acquittances (1535-1882); rentals and rent accounts (1389-1929) including very complete estate accounts for the seventeenth century covering servants, wages, horses, clothes, house and mill repairs, wine and general provisioning and funeral expenses for two women members of the family; surveys and valuations (1565-1905) including one of the 1649 estates of Philip Constable and an 1834-58 fieldbook of Everingham, Thorpe le Street and Seaton Ross showing the rotation of crops.
U DDEV/60 comprises the correspondence of the Constable family of Everingham and the Maxwell family of Dumfries Shire in Scotland and the Constable Maxwell family after their union by marriage in the eighteenth century. Seventeenth-century letters include those of Philip Constable (c.1595-1664), some referring to proceedings against him for recusancy, as well as letters of his son, Marmaduke Constable (1619-1680), and the Sherburne family who were closely connected to them through marriage. One loose letter contains Lord Traquair's dying advice to his children dated 28 March 1666 (U DDEV/60/84). Letters of the next generation are interesting on the affairs of William and Mary. Family letters of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries are most valuable for information on English and Scottish estate affairs as well as Roman Catholic affairs in England. There is correspondence with Pope Gregory XVI and some letters contain information on the building of the Roman Catholic chapel at Everingham. Letters to Theresa Constable Maxwell include material on financial and household affairs and family settlements as well as details relating to the death of her husband who was Marmaduke William Constable Maxwell (1760-1819), who inherited Caerlaverock Castle in Dumfries from his mother. The correspondence of their son includes material on the inheritance and claim by the Constable Maxwell's of the Herries peerage of Scotland. The next generation, represented by Marmaduke Francis Constable Maxwell (1837-1908), is particularly interesting for letters about Roman Catholic affairs (including a book of letters and papers of Bishop Bonaventure 1694-1715) and there are letters from Europe, North America, Canada and South Africa. The correspondence in U DDEV/60 is also rich in estate correspondence especially that of the Everingham estates 1720-1814 and 1904-1944.
U DDEV/61 contains several series of family diaries. The diaries of Marmaduke William Constable Maxwell (1760-1819) were written during continental and Scottish tours as were some of his son, William Constable Maxwell (1804-1876). These diaries are very extensive (1826-1842 and 1860-1876) and encompass family affairs and the weather as well as the laying of the foundation stone of the Catholic chapel at Everingham. Amongst the diaries also are those of Marmaduke Francis Constable Maxwell (1837-1908) and his wife Angela Mary Charlotte Fitzalan-Howard, his covering the years 1863-1877 with journals of his European and Middle Eastern travels as well as estate affairs and hers covering the period 1870-1883 and largely concerned with social and family affairs.
U DDEV/62-64 comprises legal papers, including about 300 papers relating to the Herries peerage case (1837-1854), acts of parliament including enclosure acts and the 1791 act for relief of papists, and papers relating to drainage and navigation as well as railway building. U DDEV/65 contains genealogical material and pedigrees of the Constable and Maxwell family, as well as the Sherburne, Paynell, Strickland, Hatfield and Langdale families and a seventeenth-century pedigree of the royal family to James I. Inventories at U DDEV/66 include one of the goods and chattels of Sir Marmaduke Constable on his death in 1545, one of the Constable household in 1637, one of the furniture in 1652, one of the goods of Philip Constable in 1686, the furniture and household goods of Marmaduke Constable in 1728, the household furniture at Everingham in 1746 and various nineteenth-century inventories of plate, glassware, furniture and jewelry and a 1908 wine list for the cellar. Some of the most interesting are those of the goods pawned by the family in the 1690s and 1710s as a direct result of the financial burden of fines placed upon the family as Roman Catholic recusants.
U DDEV/67 is specifically a collection relating to Roman Catholic affairs including the 5 volumes of the Reverend J Knaresborough's 'Sufferings of the Catholics' (compiled around 1720) with lists of martyrs, banished priests, prisoners in York castle and various seventeenth-century papers including Thomas Thweng's dying speech of 1680 in his own hand. There is a 1740 transcript of the 1580 'Life and death of Mistress Margaret Clitheroe' as well as printed material on the pilgrimage of grace, Mary Queen of Scots and the popish plot (the Constable and the Maxwell families were involved with the politics of all three in some way). U DDEV/67/70 are the apostolic letters of Pope Pius XI about English martyrs and amongst the family materials are registrations of Catholic baptisms and burials as well as the illuminated certificate of the visit of Gwendolen Howard, duchess of Norfolk to 'holy places' in 1933.
U DDEV/68 is a miscellaneous section of papers which includes estate material like cellar books and catalogues of books, lists of servants and plate, lists of the children living at Everingham (and their weights!) and a journal of estate affairs of Marmaduke Francis Constable Maxwell such as those at U DDEV/61. This miscellaneous section also includes more printed material on the popish plot, an account of the examination of Titus Oates and two letters from King James II to the pope. There are 33 recipe and medicinal scripts dating from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century and a seventeenth-century copy of the 1466 provisions made for the feast of George Neville, archbishop of York, at his installation. There is a 1608 copy of George Constable's 'Book touching the order and government of a nobleman's house' and a memorandum of coins minted in England between 1695 and 1698. Eighteenth-century material includes the duchess of Norfolk's 'The lady's answer to a divorce' of 1700, Roman Catholic material and some printed military news. There are a number of family honours and a large amount of material on the persecution of Sir Philip Constable as a recusant in the seventeenth century. A letter of 19 March 1846 is from the Reverend John Newman and there is an invitation to the wedding of Gwendolen Mary Constable Maxwell to the duke of Norfolk. Other family papers relate to the settling of estates and funerals.
U DDEV/69 is a small collection of family papers within the papers of the Constable Maxwell family relating to the Sherburnes of Stonyhurst. They include a pedigree, the wills of the two Richard Sherburnes of the seventeenth century and various financial settlements of the 1640s, 1650s and 1660s when the fortunes of the Sherburne family were closely connected to those of the Constable family. U DDEV/70 contains maps and plans including a 1657 plan of the manor of Drax Abbey; a seventeenth-century plan of Thorpe-le-Street; a 1753 map of the town fields of Everingham; J Tuke's 1786 map of Holderness and various plans and elevations of Everingham Hall and the new chapel of 1826.
The English papers in the collection continue in U DDEV2. There are estate papers for the East Riding as follows - Arras (1911-1912), demonstrating the title of the duchess of Norfolk; Bielby (1841-1903); Everingham (1930), notes about tithes; Holme upon Spalding Moor (1897-1936), an original bundle relating to the duchess of Norfolk's purchase of the hall and estate; Seaton Ross (1834-1936), including an abstract of the title, various farm sales and tenancy agreements and the wills of three members of the Langdale family; miscellaneous papers relating to the East Riding in U DDEV2/8 (1912-1936). Other parts of the country represented in U DDEV2 are Billinghurst in Sussex (1923-1924) and some deeds of entail and disentail for Scotland dated 1712, 1814 and 1904.
Papers relating to the settlement of the estates of Marmaduke Francis Constable Maxwell, 11th baron Herries, his wife, Angela Mary Charlotte Constable (nee Fitzalan Howard) and his brother William Constable Maxwell, are at U DDEV2/9, U DDEV2/10 and U DDEV2/11. The remainder of U DDEV2 comprises accounts (1880-1926), including taxation at Everingham and some accounts for the Scottish estates; one letter of 1931; an 1860 plan of Everingham; settlements (1877-1932), including family marriage settlements such as that of Gwendolen Mary Constable Maxwell to the 15th duke of Norfolk (1904) and the arrangement of childrens' portions. A section containing interesting printed material includes nineteenth-century Roman Catholic pamphlets and books, amongst them some of the lectures of John Henry Newman, the 10th Report of the Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts (1885) and the 1901 publication The Constables of Flamburgh by Marmaduke Francis Constable Maxwell.
The very valuable Scottish papers in U DDEV/71-81 number some 2400 items. U DDEV/71 comprises accounts and vouchers (1623-1892) and includes eighteenth-century journals of the affairs of the countess of Nithsdale and accounts for Terregles and Caerlaverock in the nineteenth century. U DDEV/74 is a collection of legal documents relating to the family estates including the disentailing and sale of some Traquair lands by William Constable Maxwell, 10th Lord Herries, in 1874-6 and attempts to disentail further estates in 1904. U DDEV/75 comprises a collection of maps and plans including plans and surveys of the barony of Caerlaverock dated 1776 and 1816. U DDEV/77 is a collection of rentals, surveys and valuations for the Terregles, Caerlaverock and Nithsdale estates covering the period 1735 to 1908 and U DDEV/78, catalogued as 'various documents', is a collection of assorted bonds, settlements and miscellaneous items relating especially to land title of the Maxwell family. Miscellaneous material in the Scottish papers contains much of value for research into the history of Scotland. For example, U DDEV/72 is forty bound volumes of the manuscript notes and correspondence of the Scottish antiquarian and biographer, George Chalmers (1742-1825). It represents the largest collection of his research material outside Edinburgh University Library and the Advocates' Library of Scotland. It includes manuscript notes for Caledonia (3 vols, 1807, 1810, 1834), including John Mackinlay's handwritten 'A description of the antiquities of the island of Bute' (1813) and related correspondence; material on many different regions of Scotland including Dumfries and Kirkcudbrightshire (and, therefore, notes on the Maxwell family) and letters from fellow antiquarians like James Mitchell (1786?-1844), William Robinson (1777-1848) and John Skinner (1772-1839). There is also some correspondence of Thomas Constable (1812-1881), the printer and publisher to the queen and Edinburgh University and copyright holder to Chalmers's work after his death (National Library of Scotland, Summary catalogue of the Advocates' manuscripts, 1971; Edinburgh University Library, Index to manuscripts, 1964). U DDEV/76 is also filled with historical miscellany. It contains bound manuscripts with fragments of Scottish history, genealogies and papers on the history of the Maxwell family and Herries barony and Lady Winifred Herbert Maxwell's account of helping her husband escape from the tower of London in1716. Miscellaneous estate papers include material on sequestered property as well as inventories and an original bundle of papers relating to the 1873 movement of the family muniments from Terregles to Everingham (inventories done for the Historical Manuscripts Commission were completed some eight years before - U DDEV/79A, William Fraser, Inventories of the muniments of the families of Maxwell, Herries, and Nithsdale in the charter room at Terregles, 1865). Printed material in this miscellaneous section spans the dates 1748 to 1883 and includes William Maxwell's (d.1776) 'Depositions of the witnesses' (1848) when attempting to regain the lands and titles of his father. U DDEV/76/2 is an intriguing label inscribed 'belt and leading strings of infant king James VI supposed to have been left at Terregles by Queen Mary after the battle of Langside' (1567). Sadly, this early example of a set of baby reigns has become detached from its label and lost. U DDEV/73 is correspondence covering the period 1650 to 1872. A small number of letters for the 2nd and 3rd earls of Nithsdale are here (though most are in U DDEV/79, 80). However, the bulk of the surviving family letters in this section are from the first half of the eighteenth century and relate to the affairs of William Maxwell, 5th earl of Nithsdale, after his escape from England to Rome. Family financial arrangements (including marriages) form much of the substance (there are more in U DDEV/60/17, 23, 85).
U DDEV/79-81 represents a very complex deposit. U DDEV/79 is a series of bound volumes, some of them published volumes and some bound collections of manuscripts. U DDEV/79A is a copy of William Fraser's, Inventories of the muniments of the families of Maxwell, Herries, and Nithsdale in the charter room at Terregles (1865) and the Maxwell and Nithsdale inventories found in here calendar the papers in U DDEV/80 and U DDEV/81. The Herries manuscripts are at Traquair House, Peebleshire. DDEV/79B-D contain copies of the inventories at U DDEV/79A and transcripts of the Maxwell muniments at U DDEV/80. U DDEV/79E is a volume of transcripts of Herries charters and letters 1468-1563 (originals at Traquair House) and extracts from Scottish state papers 1560-1579 and the Ayscough and Harleian manuscripts 1567-1578. Similarly, DDEV/79F is a collection of transcribed letters and memoranda of the Maxwell family 1640-1701, some of which finds repetition elsewhere in the volumes at U DDEV/79. U DDEV/79G contains 215 original manuscripts bound into a volume and spanning the dates 1589(?) to 1779 and U DDEV/79H-J (no volume I) are also bound volumes, containing 199 and 121 manuscripts respectively spanning the dates 1607 to 1848. These are all Nithsdale and Herries papers and taken together with the manuscripts at U DDEV/80 and U DDEV/81 represent a collection of close to 2000 papers, the bulk of which relate to state affairs in early modern Scotland. Some of these papers have been printed. After completing inventories for the Historical Manuscripts Commission in 1865 Sir William Fraser collected together those most pertinent to state affairs and privately published them at the behest of William, Lord Herries (younger brother of Marmaduke Constable Maxwell, 11th baron Herries). They appeared as The book of Carlaverock in 2 volumes in 1873 and a copy is at U DDEV/K-L. As only 150 copies were printed this is a rare survival in itself. The contents of U DDEV/79G-J are largely seventeenth century. It includes the correspondence and papers of Robert Maxwell of Caerlaverock (1613-1646) who was created 1st earl of Nithsdale in 1620. Robert Maxwell's correspondence includes letters from Marshal Tillieres and Cardinal Richelieu of France as well as Louis XIII written from the late 1620s to 1641. In Scotland his correspondents included various lairds and members of the Scottish privy council including James Huntly, William Ker, and George and Frederick Hamilton. There are also letters from John Spottiswood, archbishop of St Andrews. There are two letters of James VI written in 1623 and several letters of Charles I written in the crucial years 1639-1640 and one from Queen Henrietta Maria. There is a 1627 commission of Christian IV of Denmark for raising troops and one letter of the same year from Elizabeth, queen of Bohemia (sister of Charles I). Correspondents from Ireland are Thomas Wentworth, the lord deputy, and Richard Boyle, the earl of Cork. Robert Maxwell (1620-1667), 2nd earl of Nithsdale was succeeded to the title by his cousin John Maxwell, 7th Lord Herries (of Terregles), and their correspondence in the 1650s, whilst both serving time in prison, is to be found in U DDEV/79G-J. There are also letters of other family members of this generation. Robert Maxwell's correspondence with General Monck is in U DDEV/79J as is some of the correspondence of both sides of the family (Nithsdale and Herries) with the court of Charles II after the Restoration. U DDEV/79G includes the commission of Robert Maxwell, 3rd earl of Nithsdale and 8th Lord Herries, from James VII of Scotland to serve against William of Orange and U DDEV/79J contains the warrant of arrest for his son, William Maxwell, 4th earl of Nithsdale and 8th Lord Herries, for his part in the Jacobite rebellion of 1715. Eighteenth-century papers in U DDEV/79-G-J are largely to do with family affairs, particularly attempts to regain financial security, and include letters to and from several female members of the family. The Maxwell muniments at U DDEV/80 span the dates 1276-1669 and the Nithsdale muniments at U DDEV/81 span the dates 1666-1720. These are largely charters, contracts and title deeds and include the 1525 grant by Herbert, abbot of Sweetheart, of the bailiary of the abbey to Robert Maxwell and the certificate of supplication of the same year from James V to Pope Clement VII recommending John Maxwell to the abbacy of Sweetheart. There are various commissions and confirmations of James V to the Maxwell family including the charters of confirmation to the stewartry of Kirkcudbright and the keep of the castle of Treif. There is a remission of Mary Queen of Scots in 1545 for Robert Maxwell's deliverance of Caerlaverock Castle to the English and there are several more letters and commissions of Charles I.