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Some Sheffield (and Handsworth) relatives of William Axe of Mexborough (died 1798)


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Richard Axe

This is a transcript with notes of William Axe's will. He never married so left his estate to others, assumed to be relatives in the main. Can anyone shed any light on the families or their descendants? Oates (Sheffield) and Mitchell (Handsworth) are the two most obviously relevant to this forum.

This is the last will and testament of me William Axe of Mexbrough in the county of York yeoman. First I will and direct that all such debts as I shall justly owe at the time of my decease the charges and expences of and attending my funeral and the proving of this my will be in the first place duly paid satisfied and discharged by my executors hereinafter named and appointed I give and bequeath unto William Oates[1] of Sheffield Taylor the legacy or sum of one hundred pounds of lawful money of Great Britain. Also I give and bequeath unto Sarah Axe[2] of Mexbrough aforesaid spinster Mantuamaker[3] the legacy or sum of fifty pounds of like lawful money. Also I give and bequeath unto Elizabeth[4] the wife of Samuel … Langfield of Mexbrough aforesaid the legacy or sum of fifty pounds of like lawful money. Also I give and bequeath unto William Truelove[5] of Clayton Blacksmith Thomas Truelove of Wombwell Weaver George Truelove of Greasbrough Labourer Martha the widow of William Herring of Billingley and Elizabeth the wife of  _____ Crookes[6] of Worsebrough the legacy or sum of twenty pounds apiece of like lawful money. Also I give and bequeath unto Mary[7] the wife of Michael Athy of Ravenfield Carpenter the legacy or sum of forty pounds of like lawful money. Also I give and bequeath unto Elizabeth[8] the wife of _______ [Hammerton?] of Emley the sum of forty pounds of like lawful money. Also I give and bequeath unto Mary Mitchell and Phebe Mitchell[9] of Mexbrough aforesaid spinsters Mantuamakers and to Sarah Langfield and Mary Langfield spinsters daughters of the said Samuel Langfield the sum of ten pounds apiece of like lawful money. I also give and bequeath unto John Axe son of William Axe[10] of Adwick upon Derne Labourer the sum of twenty pounds of like lawful money. Also I give and bequeath unto John Hawksley and George Hawksley[11] and to John Axe[12] of Mexbrough aforesaid Blacksmith and John Mason of Doncaster[13] the sum of one shilling apiece of like lawful money all which said several and respective legacies or sums of money hereinafter by me given and bequeathed to the said several and respective legatees I will and direct shall be paid to them respectively by my said executors at the end of twelve calendar months next after my decease all the rest residue and remainder of my money securities for money goods cattle chattels personal estate and effects whatsoever and wheresoever .. of what nature kind or quality soever subject to the payment of my just debts and the charges and expences of and attending the funeral the proving of this my will and several legacies …. by me respectively given and bequeathed I give and bequeath the same and every part and parcel thereof unto Robert Axe and John Axe of Mexbrough aforesaid Labourers (sons of the late John Axe[14] of the same place Cordwainer[15]) their executors administrators and … absolutely share and share alike. And I do hereby make constitute and appoint these the said Robert Axe and John Axe Labourers joint executors of this my last will and testament and I do hereby revoke and make void all former and other will and wills by me at any time heretofore made and declare this only to be my last will and testament in witness whereof I the said William Axe the testator have to this any last will and testament set to my hand & seal this twenty fourth day of November in the year of our Lord One Thousand Seven Hundred and Ninety Five – The Mark and Seal of William X Axe – Signed sealed and published and Declared by the said William Axe the Testator as … for his last will and testament in the presence of us who at request in his sight and presence and in the sight and presence of each other have hereto subscribed our names as witnesses – Geo Brook – John Birch – Past Seal April 1798

[1] William Axe’s mother was Sarah Oates, married to his father at Darfield in 1708. The bequest would suggest that an Oates had moved to Sheffield, perhaps from Darfield. A John Oates, husbandman of Wombwell, Darfield, obtained a marriage license with Elizabeth Green, of Sheffield, in 1718. They were married there on 2nd October of that year. Two William Oates are listed in the Sheffield registers as taylors: one was buried in 1768, the other in 1800 so the latter ought to be the beneficiary listed.

[2] Presumed daughter of his brother John and niece of William

[3] Mantuamaker – maker of loose gowns (dressmaker)

[4] The daughter of Robert Axe and a cousin to William. She died in 1810.

[5] There is no known link to the Axes at present. The Darfield connection might suggest a link via the Oates family of his mother. Research into the Trueloves suggests that these five beneficiaries are linked, actually as siblings. William, Thomas and George Truelove are sons of William Truelove and Elizabeth Bale (married Darfield 16/2/1728-9). The baptismal register entries state their father to have been William of Wombwell. William was baptised 6/1/1729-30; Thomas 5/5/1737 and George 13/12/1741, all at Darfield. A link between Truelove and Billing exists through the marriage of a Martha Truelove to William Billing at Darfield on 18th August 1757. Martha was baptised at Darfield 16/10/1731. For Elizabeth see the note following. Bequests to all five suggests that William felt a strong connection to the family, notwithstanding the inaccurate rendering of the name of Elizabeth’s husband.

[6] This appears to be incorrect and based upon loose memory or inaccurate knowledge since William was clearly not in touch with the pair. This should be Abraham Rock, married to Elizabeth Truelove at Darfield 26/8/1762.

[7] A Mary Gadbridge married a Michael Ath(e)y on 23rd November 1775 at Ravenfield (IGI). There is no known link to the Axes on present knowledge.

[8] An Elizabeth Oates married Thomas Hammerton on 24th September 1750 at Emley and had a daughter, Elizabeth – baptised 30th December 1750 at Emley (IGI)

[9] Presumed daughters of Jane Axe and David Mitchell, married in 1768 at Handsworth. A Jane is attested as a daughter of John and, therefore, a presumed niece of William.

[10] Son of John Axe and presumed nephew to William. The latter had two children, Mary and John, so one might suspect that Mary had died prior to the will’s draft as it seems unlikely that she would have been missed deliberately. John Axe’s listed occupation as a labourer is interesting if he is the same person as John Axe of Sprotbrough, the blind organist and mechanical prodigy.

[11] A Margaret Axe married a John Hawksley at Sheffield, in 1710. She is presumed to be an aunt to William and these may be her grandsons, or even sons or great-grandsons.

[12] Presumed to be the son of Robert, son of Robert, and therefore grand-nephew to William. However, it may refer to John, son of Robert and the nephew of William.

[13] There may be another Truelove connection here. Thomas Truelove (above) married an Elizabeth Mason at Darfield in 1764.

[14] Brother to William – they appear to have been twins. He died in 1761.

[15] Cordwainer – shoemaker

 

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