Category Archives: local history

John HAM – the Millionaire of Milton Abbas

John Ham was baptised on 21 May 1760, the youngest son of James Hobell and Charity Ham (neé Gould, later Hallett). His parents were married in 1747. They had a daughter, Elizabeth, born in 1749 but she only lived for … Continue reading

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Exhibition 28 – 30 August 2021

At last! Now we can hold our exhibition. We have so much to show that it will be in both St James Church, Milton Abbas and the Reading Rooms, Milton Abbas. Lots more details here. We do hope you can … Continue reading

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You must be interested in history or you wouldn’t be looking at our website!

Researching history can be lonely, we know what it is like, we have been doing it a long time! But it is exciting too – the chase for that vital piece of information, that brick wall broken through, that old … Continue reading

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Stop Press! Latest Findings

From a lease of nearly 250 years ago! We have recently transcribed this lease which is in the Dorset History Centre. It confirms that in 1773 the trustees of the school were active and looking after the free grammar school … Continue reading

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Grist

Every parish had its Overseers of the Poor who were responsible for raising the ‘poor rates’ and for the payments to the poor. The agricultural labourers (ag labs) in Dorset at this time were some of the poorest in the … Continue reading

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Your family history!

Tired of reading books about kings and queens, the rich and famous? Fed up with Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn? The lives of ordinary people are just as tragic, difficult, triumphant and revelationary. How your ancestors survived the traumas and … Continue reading

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Dorchester Gaol

In the Dorset History Centre and available on Ancestry is the Criminal process register. 1782-1808, Catalogue Reference NG-PR/1/D/1/1. This gives much information, such as the prisoner’s name, the magistrate who committed them, their place of residence, their description, age, date … Continue reading

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Who built the new village of Milton Abbas?

It is not certain who was responsible for the design and building of the new “model” village of Milton Abbas. The names that have vied for credit are Sir William Chambers, one of Lord Milton’s architects, and Lancelot “Capability” Brown, … Continue reading

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Bills and Receipts of the Overseers of the Poor of Milton Abbas 1787- 1823

In the Dorset History Centre there are some 140 pieces of paper catalogued at PE-MIL/OV/2. These are the bills and receipts of our Overseers of the Poor. We are in the process of transcribing them. They provide further information to … Continue reading

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Telling Stories of the Old Town of Middleton

We came across this piece in the Summer 2020 issue of the magazine ‘Who do you think you are?’. It is on page 46, in an article titled ‘The Lasting Value of Vouchers’. This magazine is free to read for … Continue reading

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