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An immigrant Sanderson family into Ecclesfield parish? The family of Clement Sanderson

Richard Axe

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The name Clement is unusual in England and has no precedent within the Yorkshire Sandersons before the last third of the seventeenth century. Possible antecedents can be detected in Kent and Leicestershire; another possibility might be its emergence through a female line, e.g., by marriage[1].

In the absence of any evidence to the contrary, Clement Sanderson looks like a new man coming into South Yorkshire. No baptism and no marriage records are evident before a number of children are noted in the records from the parish of Ecclesfield. Frustratingly, a burial for Clement’s wife is known but no forename is given. Their children known from the records are as below.

·       A child, buried 28/3/1671

·       John, baptised 2/10/1671

·       An infant, buried 26/3/1673

·       Charles, baptised 6/5/1675

·       Patience, baptised 4/11/1677

·       Martha, buried 26/5/1680

·       Clement, baptised 12/3/1681-2

·       Ezrah, baptised 20/4/1684

·       Ruben, buried 5/1/1687-8

·       Jonathan, baptised 6/3/1689-90

Various items are of interest here. Firstly, many of the names of the children are not common to other Sanderson branches. Secondly, there is a very small timespan between the burial of an unnamed child and the baptism of another child in 1671. Perhaps John was born prematurely. Thirdly, Clement’s first wife and son Ruben were buried on consecutive dates in 1687-8 (4th and 5th January respectively) so it may be that both died arising from the birth of the son. Fourthly, the birth of a son subsequently must mean that Clement remarried fairly quickly. Again, there is no sign of a marriage but a burial record provides both the evidence and – this time – a name. The burial of Susanna, wife of Clement, is recorded at Ecclesfield on 28th August 1718, and it gives a location of Grenoside. Clement’s homonymous son was married already at this stage so the entry has to refer to the father. Clement himself died in 1727-8 and was buried at Ecclesfield on 20th February; his abode was Grenoside.

What of Clement’s children? Clement and Ezrah are names sufficiently distinctive to be able to follow relatively easily. Both crop up in some interesting locations in both Yorkshire and Derbyshire so following them might provide some options to establish lines of descent. The name Clement allows for the identification of part of the family in Derbyshire (see below); that of Ezra opens up the same possibility for Darfield.

The marriage of Charles Saunderson of Ecclesfield and Mary Ashley, of the parish of North Wingfield, Derbyshire, occurred at the latter place on 2nd February 1702-3. The baptismal entries give their abode as nearby Tupton. They had a goodly number of children, all baptised at North Wingfield.

·       Sarah, baptised 10/11/1703

·       Mary, baptised 30/4/1705

·       Charles, baptised 30/1/1706-7

·       Clement, baptised 14/5/1710

·       Joshua, baptised 13/4/1714

·       Jonathan, baptised 13/4/1714

·       Elizabeth, baptised 13/10/1717

Charles was still living at Tupton when he died in 1756; he was buried at North Wingfield on 26th August.

Of their children, Charles looks to be the man who married Elizabeth Turner at Shirland on 20th July 1730. A son Richard was baptised at North Wingfield (23/4/1739); another named Jonathan was baptised at Tibshelf on 7th June 1742. If there were any born earlier they are not apparent. Clement is immediately recognisable as the man who married Mary Littlewood at Clowne on 17th December 1735. He died there in 1747 and was buried on 29th August. Only one child, a son named Charles, appears to be the fruit of their marriage; he was baptised at Clowne on 29th November 1741. Joshua married Mary Garlick at North Wingfield on 28th September 1737 and the pair produced children as follows. Their residence was at Tupton at the time of the first baptism.

·       John, baptised at North Wingfield 9/4/1738

·       Mary, baptised at Heath 6/2/1742-3

·       Margaret, baptised at Heath 30/12/1748

Clement junior of Ecclesfield obtained a licence to marry Elisabeth Tagg on 24th May 1703. He does not appear to have remained in Ecclesfield for too many years if the parish records from Whittington, Derbyshire, are of relevance. Clement’s wife Elisabeth is named on a baptismal record there from 1714 so it seems very likely that we have the same couple. Perhaps he followed in his elder brother’s footsteps. A few children are recorded in the Whittington registers.

·       Elizabeth, baptised 2/1/1708-9

·       John, baptised 20/4/1712

·       A daughter, baptised in 1714

·       Mary, baptised 18/12/1715

Clement died in 1743 and was buried at Whittington on 25th October. Elizabeth predeceased him, being buried there on what looks like the 31st March 1735.

Ezrah died in 1727 and was buried at Ecclesfield. No marriage is evident but a number of children are attested, all baptised there.

·       Elizabeth, baptised 28/5/1708

·       Ezra, baptised 10/5/1710

·       John, baptised 22/7/1713

·       Elizabeth, baptised 20/1/1715-6

·       Matthew, baptised 2/3/1720-1

·       Thomas, baptised 16/4/1724

Ezra junior married a woman from Darfield; the marriage entry gives his parish as Ecclesfield. He married Hannah Linley there on 4th October 1731 but the marriage was perhaps of no long duration. An Ezra died in 1734 and was buried at Darfield on 30th June. The burial entry is of interest because it gives his occupation as that of soldier. That might not be the right man, however. An Ezra, son of Ezra, was baptised at Ecclesfield in 1736 so the matter is far from clearcut.

Matthew was apprenticed to Hugh Mellor, a filesmith of Shiregreen, in 1736. Apprenticed for nine years he gained his freedom in 1749.


[1] A Clement Saunderson is noted from Chancery case Saunderson v Beadles (C 3/377/38) regarding the personal estate of the deceased Ellen Saunderson widow Narborough, Leicestershire. The date was 1622.

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