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History of Quakers in Sheffield


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chrisp1949

I am trying to find out more about the extent of Quakerism in the Stocksbridge area from around 1800. Has anyone done any research on this? I would like to know more about the particular families or individuals involved and the extent of Quakerism amongst the local population. I know of meetings in chapels at High Flatts and also near Penistone and that meetings were held in people's houses. There is also a Quaker burial ground near Stannington all of which suggest a strong Quaker presence in the area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Edmund

The Bowcroft cemetery at Stannington was used by one family only - the Shaw family of Brookside and The Hill, who were buried there between 1708 and 1731.  In 1731 the widow of William Shaw of The Hill bequeathed "'to my friends called Quakers belonging to Sheffield meeting £5 to be put into the stock of the aforesaid meeting and the profits accruing to be given to supply the necessities ofthe poor that receive no collection and belong to Sheffield meeting. '.  So it may be that they didn't meet locally with others, but went to Sheffield town for their meetings?

The Shaw family lived at Brookside and its neighbouring farm, The Hill. George Shaw bought the Brookside estate from Richard Rawson of Hatfield House in 1649. George, his father, Robert (died 1671) and brother, William, of The Hill 'on several occasions between 1652-60 welcomed George Fox, founder of the Society of Friends or Quakers, to their home.   The Shaws suffered harrassment from the curate of Bradfield for not paying their tithes, until 1684 when a verdict was given against them and they had to pay damages and costs. George died in 1708 and was buried in Bowcroft Cemetery where his tombstone records 'He suffered much for bearing testimony against payment of tythes. '

Somewhat earlier Harrison's 1637 survey states that Henry Crapper held a tenement in Stannington Town with lands near Hall Park and the Quaker meadow near Racker Way (though oddly Quakerism didn't begin until ten years later?).  The Crappers seem to have had some interest in Quakerism.  George Crapper a cutler who died in 1753 and was a signatory to an agreement regarding Rivelin Corn Mill had the following footnote to the probate copy of his will:

"George was found dead, slumped over the table, about one hour after making his will which was written for him by Wm. Fairbank of Sheffield, yeo, at Joseph's in Sheffield. Joseph was of the Company of Quakers.'

The Fairbanks of Sheffield (surveyors) were a Quaker family.

A History of the Parish of Penistone (1906) by John N. Dransfield contains reference to Quakers of that area - a copy is available here:

History of Penistone

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chrisp1949

Many thanks for  this  very informative response. I will certainly read Dransfield with interest.

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