William Dafforn Evarard (1786–1870), Linen and Woollen Draper

Thomas Evarard (1745–1808) of Attleborough, near Nuneaton, Warwickshire married Elizabeth Dafforn (1756–1829) of Tamworth on 26 December 1782. They had eight children: Elizabeth (1781–1849), William Dafforn (1786–1870), Mary (1788–1844), Hannah Maria (1791–1860), John (1791–1829), Joseph (1794–1850), Susannah (1799–1862), and Jane (1800–1831).

White’s 1834 directory, and poll books of the early 1830s list William Dafforn Evarard as a linen and woollen draper in High Street, Uttoxeter. By 1841 he and his wife Sarah were living in Market Place alongside Henry Lawrence, Edward Kelsey, and Anna Leaves, all drapers’ assistants, and servant Leah Morley.

Between 1844 when the poll book for that year recorded him as living in a freehold house in the Market Place and his death aged 83 in 1870, Evarard had returned to Warwickshire with his wife and was living at 8 Union Street, Coventry. His probated estate was under £5,000.

Everard’s pre-printed bills state clearly ‘ready money only’, but this was evidently to encourage prompt payment rather than a strictly enforced business maxim. A bill sent to the overseers for calico, thread, and tape costing £1-7-9 dated 29 April 1831, for example, took two months to settle. Goods were supplied to both the workhouses in Uttoxeter and Doveridge, and to individuals in receipt of poor relief including ‘Brassington’ who was given five yards of Welsh flannel and ‘Ward’ who was given a w[oolle]n frock in 1832.  In the 1830s the range of goods supplied to Uttoxeter’s overseers varied little: calico, tape, cotton, thread, Welsh flannel, brown sheeting, moleskin, buttons, and cord.

Everard’s business success enabled him to invest in the local infrastructure and to contribute to charity. In 1838 his name appeared as a shareholder in the Commercial Bank of England and in 1836 he made a £1-1-0 contribution to a missionary charity.


1841 Census HO 107/1007/15

1832 and 1844 Poll Books and Electoral Registers 1538–1893

A list of the Country Banks of England and Wales, private and proprietary; also of the names of all the shareholders of joint stock banks (London: M. A. Marchant, 1838)

National Probate Calendar 5 April 1870, William Dafforn Everard effects under £5,000.

SRO, D3891/6/37/3/4, Uttoxeter overseers’ vouchers, 18 June 1831

SRO, D3891/6/37/10/14, Uttoxeter overseers’ vouchers, 12 January 1832

SRO, D3891/6/37/12/69, Uttoxeter overseers’ vouchers, 7 February–8 March 1832

SRO, D3891/6/40/10/4, Uttoxeter overseers’ vouchers, 23 January 1834

SRO, D3891/6/40/16/5, Uttoxeter overseers’ vouchers, 28 June 1836

SRO, D3891/6/40/16/17, Uttoxeter overseers’ vouchers, 28 June 1836

The Evangelical Magazine and Missionary Chronicle vol. 14 (London: Frederick Westley and A. H. Davis, 1836)

William White, History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire (1834)

N.B. This biography is a work in progress and will probably be amended as further information from vouchers and other sources becomes available.


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