|Barlow of Middlethorpe Hall|
Thomas Barlow (1666-1713) lived around Sheffield in the years before he inherited his uncle's property, and it seems very probable that he was involved in the ironworks company in an active capacity. When his uncle died, he retained his investment in the ironworks (and the income it brought) but took steps to reposition himself socially as a gentleman. These included, in 1691, acquiring a coat of arms; in 1695, undertaking a belated Grand Tour of Europe; and in 1698-1701, the purchase of the Middlethorpe estate near York and the construction of a new house there which his contemporary, the Leeds antiquarian Ralph Thoresby, considered was 'built after the Italian mode he had observed in his travels to Rome'. At first sight, it is perhaps surprising that he chose an estate so far from Sheffield, but he no doubt wanted his reinvention as a gentleman to take place well away from the area where he was known as an industrialist, and where he might thus hope to meet with readier social acceptance; he may also have been drawn by the social attractions of York, which was very much the leading social centre of the north of England at this time. Another factor may have been that he had inherited a small piece of land at Middlethorpe from his uncle and benefactor, the income from which had been left at his uncle's death to support a parochial charity for decayed tradesmen in Sheffield, but the possession of which may have brought to Thomas's attention the availability of a larger property in the same place. Thomas was married in 1690 but his wife died four years later, leaving him with only one son, Francis Barlow (c.1694-1771). Nothing is known of Francis' education, except that in 1712 his father let Middlethorpe Hall and set off with him on a Grand Tour of Europe. Unfortunately, while they were travelling in France, Thomas died suddenly, and he was probably buried there; rather surprisingly, Francis seems simply to have continued his travels.
On his return in 1714, Francis Barlow continued the process of moving into the landed gentry. In 1716, he sold his share in the Sheffield ironworks, and in 1718-19 and 1732 he made further purchases of land around Middlethorpe and in the East Riding of Yorkshire. He also enlarged Middlethorpe by the addition of low three-bay wings to either side. He married twice, on both occasions in London, where he seems to have spent a good deal of his time. Some sources record his first wife as Mary Cook, but she was Mary Morgan at the time of her marriage. They had six recorded children before she died, probably in childbirth in 1729. In 1745 he married again, to a woman thirty years his junior, and had a further eight children. Some sources record his second wife as Elizabeth Robinson, but the register gives her name as Elizabeth Carter, and since she was only about nineteen at the time of their marriage, she was presumably not already a widow. The genealogy below gives what I believe is the fullest account currently available of his children, but it remains very incomplete, and I hope that others will be able to add further detail from their own research.
Francis Barlow left a will which names some but not all of his surviving children. Reading between the lines, it looks as though he was alienated from the surviving children of his first marriage, one of whom is not mentioned at all while the other two, who had incurred his displeasure, were explicitly disinherited (although they did receive small allowances). It was his eldest son by his second marriage, Samuel Francis Barlow (c.1747-1800), who succeeded to Middlethorpe and the East Riding estates, while his younger siblings received fairly generous cash sums. Samuel married Mary Thornton (1751-1842), the daughter of a local MP and sister of the fanatical field sportsman, Col. Thomas Thornton, and they had six sons and three daughters. Three of the sons in turn inherited Middlethorpe: Francis William Barlow (1775-1805), who died unmarried; John Barlow (c.1780-1813), who added a ballroom to Middlethorpe but whose only child was a daughter; and Andrew Samuel Barlow (1781-1824), who was married but had no issue. He left the estate to his widow for life, providing she remained a widow, but she remarried in 1827, at which point the estate passed to John's daughter, Frances Barlow (1807-52). She married the Rev. Edward Trafford Leigh, rector of Cheadle (Cheshire), in 1828, and seems to have let the house. When he died in 1847 she moved back to Yorkshire, but to a small house at Dringhouses (where she rebuilt the church in his memory) and she let Middlethorpe to two ladies who ran it as a girls' school for some thirty years. In December 1851, she married again, to a Manchester physician called Dr. Matthew Eason Wilkinson (1813-78), but six months later she died, leaving him the estate, which he and later his son continued to lease out until 1932, when it was finally sold.
Middlethorpe Hall, Yorkshire
|Middlethorpe Hall: drawing by Francis Place, c.1705, showing the house and garden soon after they were constructed.|
Image: York City Art Gallery R4243.
Middlethorpe Hall on the outskirts of York was built in c.1699-1701 for Thomas Barlow (1666-1713), on the site of an earlier 17th century house, of which only a square dovecote in the grounds, built in 1681, survives. No building accounts or drawings survive for the house, but it has marked similarities to Newby Hall (Yorks WR), which was apparently constructed in 1693 by the leading York builder, John Etty, who may therefore have been the designer at Middlethorpe too. It is a handsome brick house of seven bays, with three full storeys above a basement, and originally had a flat roof with a surrounding balustrade, a feature which only Newby shared among contemporary houses in the York area. In 1702, Ralph Thoresby described Middlethorpe as a 'very curious house... built after the Italian mode he (Barlow) had observed in his travels to Rome', and in about 1705 the house in its original form was recorded by Francis Place. The two main fronts have stone quoins and bands between the storeys. The sash windows are said to have been the earliest in York, and have stone surrounds, given greater emphasis in the central bay.
|Middlethorpe Hall: entrance front, 2019. Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.|
|Middlethorpe Hall: garden front, 2007. Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.|
|Middlethorpe Hall: the former ballroom (now drawing room).|
|Middlethorpe Hall: ground plan, from RCHME, Inventory of monuments in the city of York, vol. 3, 1972. Crown Copyright.|
|Middlethorpe Hall: dining room panelling, 2007. Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.|
|Middlethorpe Hall: staircase.|
Image: Nicholas Kingsley. Some rights reserved.
Barlow family of Middlethorpe Hall
Barlow, Humphrey (c.1596-1653). Second son of Francis Barlow of Sheffield (1563-1616) and his first wife Isabel Frankish (d. 1598), born about 1596. Grocer and vintner in Sheffield. He married, 5 October 1625 at Mansfield (Notts), Dorothy, daughter of Gregory Sylvester of Mansfield, and had issue:
(1) Francis Barlow (1626-90), baptised 26 September 1626; partner in the Duke of Norfolk's ironworks in Sheffield; freeman of the Sheffield Company of Cutlers, 1681; died unmarried and was buried at Sheffield, 1690; will proved 18 September 1690;
(2) Samuel Barlow (1628-93) (q.v.);
(3) A daughter (fl. 1690); married [forename unknown] Elmes; living in 1689/90.
He died in 1653; administration of his goods was granted 20 September 1653. His wife's date of death is unknown.
Barlow, Samuel (1628-93). Younger son of Humphrey Barlow (c.1596-1653) and his wife Dorothy, daughter of Gregory Sylvester of Mansfield (Notts), baptised 24 September 1628. Merchant in Leeds. As an adult, he became a Quaker in religion, and was fined for non-attendance at church in 1683. He married, c.1650, Mary (d. 1703?), daughter of Thomas Johnson of Leeds, and had issue, with two further children who were stillborn:
(1) Mary Barlow (b. 1651), born 10 August 1651; died young;
(2) Seth Barlow (b. 1655), born 11 April 1655; died young;
(3) Jane Barlow (b. 1657), born 7 January 1656/7; married [forename unknown] Hetherington;
(4) Dorothy Barlow (b. 1658), born 7 May 1658; married Robert Scott (d. 1708) of Leeds, mercer (who married 2nd, Elizabeth Wimersley, widow) and had issue; died before 1708;
(5) Samuel Barlow (1660-79), born 23 May 1660; died unmarried, 29 October 1679 and was buried in the Quaker burial ground, Leeds;
(6) Elizabeth Barlow (1661-85), born 29 December 1661; married Samuel James Hutcheson of Sheffield but had no issue; died 10 July 1685 and was buried in the Quaker burial ground, Leeds;
(7) Seth Barlow (1663-70), born 14 May 1663; died young, 23 July 1670 and was buried in the Quaker burial ground, Leeds;
(8) Thomas Barlow (1666-1713) (q.v.);
(9) John Barlow (1669-70), born 29 April 1669; died in infancy, 10 October 1670 and was buried in the Quaker burial ground, Leeds;
(10) Mary Barlow (1671-74), born 11 July 1671; died young, 21 April 1674 and was buried in the Quaker burial ground, Leeds;
(11) Francis Barlow (b. & d. 1673), born 6 January 1672/3; died in infancy, 29 March 1673 and was buried in the Quaker burial ground, Leeds;
(12) John Barlow (1677-1710); born 14 February 1676/7 and was baptised into the Church of England at Bishopthorpe, 1703; died unmarried, 1710.
He lived in Leeds (Yorks WR).
He was buried at Sheffield, 19 July 1693. His widow was perhaps the Mary Barlow buried at Leeds, 19 November 1703.
|Thomas Barlow (1666-1713)|
(1) Mary Barlow (1692-93), baptised at Sheffield, 20 July 1692; died in infancy and was buried at Sheffield, 18 January 1692/3;
(2) Francis Barlow (c.1694-1771) (q.v.).
In 1690 he inherited much of the estate of his uncle, Francis Barlow of Sheffield. He lived at Renishaw and Eckington (both Derbys) near Sheffield until he purchased the Middlethorpe estate in 1698 and rebuilt Middlethorpe Hall in 1699-1701. When he set off for Europe in 1712 he leased the house to Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (1689-1762), who seems to have lived here until the end of 1714.
He died in France, 1713, and was probably buried there; his will was proved in the PCC, 3 March 1713/4. His wife was buried at Eckington near Sheffield, 30 July 1694.
Barlow, Francis (c.1694-1771). Only son of Thomas Barlow (1666-1713) and his wife Mary Chapman, born about 1694. He undertook a grand tour of Europe with his father in 1712-14, during which his father died in France. High Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1735-36. He married, 1st, 22 May 1716 at St Mary-le-Strand, London, Mary Morgan*, and 2nd, 10 January 1744/5 at St Paul, Covent Garden, London, Elizabeth Carter** (c.1726-81), and had issue:
(1.1) Edward Barlow (b. 1716), baptised at St Andrew, Holborn (Middx), 25 May 1716; perhaps died young;
(1.2) Francis Barlow (1717-21?), born 18 June and baptised at St Andrew, Holborn, 12 July 1717; presumably died young and was perhaps the 'infant child' of this name buried at St Stephen, Walbrook, London, 10 March 1720/1;
(1.3) Thomas Barlow (1719-1800), baptised at St Andrew, Holborn (Middx), 24 August 1719; referred to in his father's will as 'my reprobate son whose obstinate rebellious disobedient behaviour for a long series of by past years hath given me very great vexation and trouble, and hath obliged me to disinherit him'; lived at Attleborough (Norfk) and died 1 December 1800; his will proved 12 February 1801 makes reference to a married daughter Mary, wife of Jonas Malden of Putney (Surrey), surgeon, and an acknowledged illegitimate daughter called Anne Thomas Barlow by Mrs Joyce Littleproud of Attleborough;
(1.4) Francis Barlow (1722-99), baptised at St Andrew, Holborn, 3 February 1721/2; Deputy Clerk of the Crown in the Court of Kings Bench; lived at Mitcham (Surrey); married, 27 June 1755, Alathea (c.1730-1809), daughter of Henry Masterman of Settrington (Yorks) and had issue three sons; died January 1799; will proved 23 January 1799;
(1.5) Ann Elizabeth Barlow (1723?-80), possibly the woman of this name who was baptised at St. Crux, York, 13 May 1723 (where the father's name is given as William); largely excluded from her father's will as her 'conduct in life hath not pleased me'; married, 7 March 1743/4 at Highgate (Middx), Roger Handasyde (d. 1772) of St. George the Martyr (Middx); buried at Fulham (Middx), 7 January 1780;
(1.6) Samuel James Barlow (1724-25), baptised at All Saints, Pavement, York, 10 August 1724; died in infancy and was buried at St Mary Bishophill, York, 20 September 1725;
(2.1) Elizabeth Frances Barlow (1746-93), born 7 April and baptised at St James, Piccadilly, Westminster (Middx), 5 May 1746; married, 30 January 1776 at York, as his second wife, Rev. William Dealtry (c.1746-1834), rector of Skirpenbeck (Yorks), and had issue three children; died 21 August and was buried at Wigginton (Yorks), 26 August 1793;
(2.2) Samuel Francis Barlow (c.1747-1800);
(2.3) John Barlow (b. 1748), baptised at Little Ilford (Essex), 2 July 1748; an officer in the Horse Guards (Lt., 1771); died in France;
(2.4) George Francis Barlow (b. 1749), born 30 June and baptised at St James, Piccadilly, 29 July 1749; an officer in the Horse Guards (Cornet, 1766; Capt., 1773; Col.); married, 25 March 1803 at St James, Piccadilly, Westminster (Middx), Maria Catherine (d. 1853), daughter of James Fortescue of Ravensdale Park and widow of Capt. Sloper;
(2.5) Charles Barlow (b. & d. 1750), born 17 August 1750; died in infancy, October 1750;
(2.6) Charles Francis Barlow (b. 1751), born 26 September and baptised at Newport Pagnell (Bucks), 18 October 1751; living in 1769;
(2.7) Robinson Barlow (b. 1757), born 13 February and baptised at St Margaret, Westminster (Middx), 15 May 1757; merchant in Halifax (Yorks WR); married, 19 August 1779 at St John, Halifax, Mary Bracken (b. c.1758);
(2.8) Philadelphia Barlow (b. 1758), baptised at St Paul, Covent Garden, London, 23 August 1758; married, 4 February 1783 at St John, Halifax (Yorks WR), Andrew Ravee of Birmingham, merchant, and later of Amsterdam (The Netherlands).
He inherited Middlethorpe Hall from his father in 1713. In 1716 he sold his half share in the Duke of Norfolk's ironworks at Sheffield, and in 1718 he bought the Yorkshire portion of the Whitmore family estates, comprising the manors of Ottringham, Bainton and Belthorpe in the East Riding, and Dringhouses, which adjoined Middlethorpe, and he made further purchases around Middlethorpe in 1719 and from 1732 onwards. At his death, his estate passed to the eldest son of his second marriage, Samuel, subject to his widow remaining in occupation of the hall until her death.
He died in November 1771; his will was proved in the PCC, 31 December 1771. His first wife may have been the Mary Barlow who died in childbirth and was buried at St Giles Cripplegate, London, 1 May 1729. His widow was buried at St Mary Bishophill, York, 2 March 1781; her will was proved at York, March 1781.
* Some accounts give her maiden name as Cook(e), but her name is given as Morgan in the register, and I can find no evidence she was a widow.
** Some accounts give her maiden name as Robinson and state she was of the family of that name from Rokeby Park, but I can find no evidence to support this, and her surname at the time of her marriage was Carter.
Barlow, Samuel Francis (c.1747-1800). Eldest son of Francis Barlow (c.1694-1771) and his second wife Elizabeth Robinson, born about 1747. Educated at Charterhouse School, Christ's College, Cambridge (matriculated 1765) and Middle Temple (admitted 1767). A director of the Yorkshire Tontine Society, 1790. He married, 31 May 1774 at Whixley (Yorks WR), Mary (1751-1842), daughter of William Thornton MP of Cattal Hall, and sister of Col. Thomas Thornton of Allerton Park, and had issue:
(1) Francis William Barlow (1775-1805), born 6 March and baptised at St Mary Castlegate, York, 4 April 1775; an officer in the army (Cornet, 1794; Lt., 1794; Capt. 1796); court-martialled for improper conduct in relation to a gaming debt but was acquitted, 1803; nonetheless he retired from his regiment the same year; an officer in the West Yorkshire Militia (Capt., 1804; Maj., 1804; Lt-Col., 1804); succeeded his father at Middlethorpe Hall, 1800; MP for Coventry, 1802-05; died unmarried at a London coffee house, 6 May 1805;
(2) William Barlow (b. 1776), born 31 January and baptised at St Mary Castlegate, York, 6 March 1776; died before 1805;
(3) Mary Ann Barlow (1776-1854), born 30 November 1776 and baptised at St Mary Castlegate, York, 1 January 1777; died unmarried at Bootham, York, 1854; will proved June 1854 (effects under £7,000);
(4) Elizabeth Barlow (c.1778-c.1849); married, 29 April 1799 at St Martin, Coney St., York, Robert Clavering Savage (1774-1829) of Elmley Castle (Worcs), and had issue one son; died in or about 1849;
(5) Henry Barlow (b. 1779), born 20 October and baptised at St Mary Castlegate, York, 17 November 1779; died before 1805;
(6) John Barlow (c.1780-1813) (q.v.);
(7) Andrew Samuel Barlow (1781-1824) (q.v.);
(8) Thomas Barlow (b. & d. 1782), born 27 April and baptised at St Mary Bishophill, York, 28 April 1782; died in infancy, 2 May 1782 and was buried at St Mary Bishophill, York the following day;
(9) Frances Emily Barlow (1783-1869), born 18 September and baptised at York, 16 October 1783; lived in Bootham, York; died unmarried, 25 October 1869; will proved 10 November 1869 (effects under £70,000);
(10) Cecilia Arabella Frances Barlow (1793-1879), born 6 April and baptised at Bishopthorpe (Yorks), 3 June 1793; married, 7 April 1817 at St Olave, York, Sir James Parke (1782-1868), 1st Baron Wesleydale, barrister-at-law and judge, and had issue three daughters; died 10 May 1879.
He inherited Middlethorpe Hall from his father in 1771.
He died 21 October and was buried at St Mary Bishophill, York, 28 October 1800; a monument to his memory is now in the vestry of St Edward the Confessor, Dringhouses; administration of his goods was granted to his widow, 19 December 1800 (effects under £5,000). His widow died aged 91 and was buried at Dringhouses chapel, 21 November 1842; her will was proved at York, March 1843 (effects under £1,500).
Barlow, John (c.1780-1813). Fourth son of Samuel Francis Barlow (c.1747-1800) and his wife Mary, daughter of William Thornton MP of Cattal Hall, born about 1780. He married, 8 January 1807 at Manchester Collegiate Church (later Cathedral), Frances (1784-1863), second daughter of John Bayley of Ardwick (Lancs), and had issue:
(1) Frances Barlow (1807-52) (q.v.)
He inherited Middlethorpe Hall from his elder brother in 1805, and enlarged the west wing to contain a ballroom in 1810.
He died at Middlethorpe, 19 April and was buried at St Mary Bishophill, York, 25 April 1813; his will was proved at York, September 1814 (effects under £3,500). His widow married 2nd, 20 November 1834 at Cheadle (Cheshire), Capt. Francis Hamilton (fl. 1866) of Southport (Lancs), and died 2 May 1863; her will was proved 30 July 1863 (effects under £1,000).
Barlow, Andrew Samuel (1781-1824). Youngest son of Samuel Francis Barlow (c.1747-1800) and his wife Mary, daughter of William Thornton MP of Cattal Hall, born 1 May and baptised at St Mary Bishophill, York, 31 May 1781. Educated at Christ's College, Cambridge (admitted 1800), but left to become a cavalry officer in the East India Company's Bengal army (Cadet, 1801; Cornet, 1803; Lt. 1807; retired on health grounds, 1811). He married, 8 April 1820 at St Marylebone (Middx), Harriet (1792-1858), daughter of Joshua Hamer of Halifax (Yorks WR), but had no issue.
He inherited Middlethorpe Hall from his elder brother in 1813 and also had a house at Épinay-sur-Seine near Paris (France).
He died in York, 4 May 1824 and was buried at Dringhouses chapel, 13 May 1824. His widow married 2nd, 1 December 1827 at Hampstead (Middx), Marcus Worsley (1794-1878) of Conyngham Hall, Knaresborough (Yorks WR), fourth son of Rev. George Worsley, rector of Stonegrave and Scawton (Yorks NR), and had issue one daughter; she died 19 November 1858; administration of her goods was granted to her husband, 23 March 1859 (effects under £1,500).
Barlow, Frances (1807-52). Only child of John Barlow (c.1780-1813) and his wife Frances, second daughter of John Bayley of Ardwick (Lancs), baptised at Fulford, York, 9 August 1807. She built the church of St Edward the Confessor, Dringhouses in memory of her first husband. She married 1st, 19 November 1828 at St Michael-le-Belfry, York, Rev. Edward Trafford Leigh (1801-47), rector of Cheadle (Cheshire) and a noted coin collector, and 2nd, 23 December 1851 at Brussels (Belgium), Matthew Alexander Eason Wilkinson MD (1813-78), physician, of Manchester, son of Thomas Wilkinson, but had no issue.
She inherited Middlethorpe Hall in 1827, when her uncle Andrew Barlow's widow remarried. After her first husband's death she leased it for use as a girls' school which remained in occupation until c.1878. On her death the property passed to her widower, and then to his second wife and children. It was finally sold in c.1932.
She died in York, 3 June, and was buried at Dringhouses chapel, York, 11 June 1852. Her first husband died at Clifton, Bristol, 6 January 1847; his will was proved in the PCC, 30 January 1847. Her widower married 2nd, 27 July 1854 at Chorlton-cum-Hardy (Lancs), Louisa Letitia (d. 1889), daughter of George Henry Walker of Philadelphia (USA), and had issue three sons and four daughters; he died in Manchester, 26 July and was buried at Dringhouses chapel, York, 30 July 1878.
F.A. Crisp, Visitation of England & Wales: Notes, vol. 10, 1913, pp. 5-8; V.C.P. Hodson, Officers of the Bengal Army, 1758-1834, vol. 1, 1926, pp. 92-93; Sir M. Barlow, Barlow family records, 1932; G. Worsley, 'Middlethorpe Hall, Yorkshire', Country Life, vol. 178, 1985, p. 1894-99; M. Fulton & H. Lazenby, 'The gardens at Middlethorpe Hall: history and restoration', Garden History, vol. 34 (1), 2006, pp. 112-31;
Location of archives
Barlow family of Middlethorpe Hall: deeds and family papers, 1558-1907 [Borthwick Institute for Archives, University of York, DRU]
Coat of arms
Sable two bars ermine on a chief indented party per pale or and argent, an eagle displayed of the first
Can you help?
- I should be most grateful if anyone can provide photographs or portraits of people whose names appear in bold above, and who are not already illustrated.
- As always, any additions or corrections to the account given above will be gratefully received and incorporated. I would be particularly grateful for more information about the children of Francis Barlow (c.1694-1771) and Samuel Francis Barlow (1748-1800).
Revision and acknowledgements
This post was first published 29 September 2019.