Joseph Summerland (1738–1808), Uttoxeter, Staffordshire

Joseph Summerland (1738–1808) married Hannah, and was the father of William (1765–1834), John (b.1767), Samuel (1773–1788), Joseph (b.1770), Thomas, (1776–1803), and Susanna (b.1779).  Joseph Summerland senior was a some-time supplier to the Uttoxeter poor.  In 1769 he sold beef to the parish in lots of 30-50 pounds at 2d or 2.5d per pound, presumably for consumption in an early workhouse.

In 1787 Joseph Summerland paid the apprentice duty on James Collier indenturing him to his butchery trade. The Universal British Directory (1790–98) lists a John a Joseph Summerland, butcher. William (see separate entry) joined his father in the butchery trade but by 1798 they announced the dissolution of their partnership in the Derby Mercury and in the Staffordshire Advertiser.

After spending some time in the West Indies and in America, Joseph’s and Hannah’s son John, returned to Uttoxeter, but was evidently unwell (see separate entry). He was admitted to the Quaker Retreat in York (established in 1792 by William Tuke to treat mental illness) in 1802, for which Joseph paid one guinea per week.

By the time of Joseph’s death aged 70 in November 1808 he had accumulated substantial real and personal estate. His probated will of 29 April 1809 made detailed provision for his surviving children William, John and Susannah, their spouses, and his servants. The executors were his son William Summerland, Thomas Lee Higgott (gent), and Samuel Botham (land surveyor). Joseph left personal estate to the sworn value of £5,000. His two dwelling houses in Tinkers Lane in the occupations of John Goodrich and Richard Johnson together with land known as Broad Meadow and Netherwood in Uttoxeter and in Leigh were to be sold publicly or privately with the executors using the proceeds to settle debts and discharge legacies.  Additional property including a house and land at High Wood, Uttoxeter, in the holding of his servant William Felthouse was to be held by Joseph’s son John for his lifetime and afterwards by his wife for her lifetime. After their deaths the property was to be settled on John’s lawful children if he should have any. If John had no children then the property was to go to the children of his son William and to the children of his daughter Susannah Newton, the wife of John Newton.

The sum of £1,200 was to be placed by his executors in government securities with the interest to be paid to his son John and on his death to John’s widow Elizabeth was to receive £400 of the £1,200. The whole was then to be divided equally amongst their children once they reached the age of twenty-one. The executors were to invest £1,000 with the interest being paid to his daughter Susannah for her separate and exclusive use. After her death it was bequeathed to her husband John Newton and then equally to their children when they reached twenty-one. If Susannah died childless then the £1,000 legacy was to be divided amongst the children of John and William. John was to receive £200, but a codicil revoked this and the money was to be added to the £1,200 being administered by the executors for John’s benefit. Leaving money in trust to John, rather than him inheriting outright, may have been as a result of his mental instability. Susannah was to receive £500. Joseph’s servant was bequeathed £10, and his servant Mary Kendrick was to receive £20 if she was still in Joseph’s employment at the time of his decease. His messuage in High Wood, late the estate of Thomas Pitts, was bequeathed to his eldest son William, as was all remaining real and personal estate.


William Salt Library 3/4/00 copy voucher of 1769; Borthwick Institute, University of York, Retreat Archives, RET 1/5/1/7 Correspondence.Derby Mercury, 25 January 1798.Lichfield Record Office, B/C 11, Will of Joseph Summerland, 29 April 1808.Jon Mitchell accessed 10/07/  accessed 11/07/2016.Staffordshire Advertiser, 13 January 1798.TNA, England and Wales Quaker Birth, Marriage and Death Index, 1578–1837.TNA, IR 1/11, Register of Duties Paid for Apprentices’ Indentures, 28 April 1787.

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