The Stedman Family History
A Brief Resumé of our Branch of the Family
Nick Stedman
Contents Aug 2016
Section 1 - The Origin of the Stedman family name.
Section 2 - The Early Stedmans 16th century -1725
Section 3 - Stedmans become the 'middling sort' 1725 - 1834
Section 4 - The Victorian and modern Stedmans 1834 - today
Section 5 - The DNA study
Pictures and maps
Appendix 1 - 13th and 14th Century manorial court records of Stedmans
Appendix 2 - "Common Conditions" by John Hunter 1576 (frontispiece)
Appendix 3 - Tracing the Stedman lineage from 1725 back to early 16th century
Appendix 4 - Passenger records from the early 20th century (FOS and family)
I started researching our branch of the Stedman family in 2003 not realising how large a project I
had taken on. The starting point was a hand drawn family tree made by my father, Nigel Stedman.
I recall him writing it down but he was a little unsure at three generations back getting Robert
Savignac Stedman muddled up with his father Robert Stedman. He was quite full of colourful
anecdotes about some of the people. At the time I was about 35 and not of an age to take too much
of an interest which I reckon starts at 45 to 50! At that age you begin to wonder about the hand of
cards you have been dealt and which branch of the family each card came from. You will never
know for sure but with a mixture of facts, anecdotes and reasonable speculation you can make a few
guesses. I have done similar research into my mother's ancestry, the Potters and Slaneys and also a
small amount of research into Susanne's antecedents.
It has ended with my detailed research which goes back 12 generations to Wyllyam Stedman born
in Rudgwick, Sussex in the early 1500s. Beyond that there are no church records. For quite a while
I went along with the story that all Stedmans were descended from a John le Stedman, of whom it
was recorded that he was a knight of the sepulchre, who returned from the Third Crusade at the end
of 1192 with King Richard and was imprisoned with him by Henry VI of Germany after being
arrested by Archduke Leopold of Austria. He was eventually released with his Lord and Master
who bestowed on him a wife, with attached estate. There may well have been such a character but
as Stedmans were fairly widely scattered around England a little over 100 years later, it is likely that
we had a more widespread and modest origin.
The late 18th century saw the Stedmans become the "middling sort". We became professionals in
the medical world and were occasionally cited in the 19th century medical literature relating to
practical cures and treatments. There are references and obituaries referring to them as esteemed
and well respected people with concern for the less well off. There is some evidence that they were
also somewhat prescriptive (see Arthur Stedman's Will).
There have been a number of detours over the years but I have been greatly helped by John Lisle in
Nashua, New Hampshire, USA who is the "Guild of One Name Studies" registrant for the entire
family. He has created a very large database of 10s of thousands of names, mostly of Stedmans
(and all spelling variants as names were often spelt phonetically). Another key researcher in the
family is David Stedman of the Shropshire branch who has been a great help and the co-ordinator of
the DNA study.
This resumé is merely to record our main ancestors and a little bit about who they were. It will
mention relatives and some of the lines of research which have quite a bit of supporting
documentation. The main database is online on my website ( and has been
incorporated into the worldwide family database run by John Lisle. I will not quote sources in this
resumé and I may stray into anecdotes and reasonable speculation. I will try to stick to the names
as they appear although sometimes spellings vary in different documents for the same person.
Section 2: Early 16th c to 1725. Wyllyam →Tomas→ John→ William→ John→ William→
Section 3: 1725 to 1834. Nathaniel→ James→ Robert→
Section 4: 1834 to today. Arthur→ Osmund→ Nigel→ Nicholas
1. The Origin of the Stedman Family Name
The family name, Stedman, looks like it should have very definite origins. Surnames were not in
use in England before William the Conqueror in 1066. Soon after he ascended the throne, he
ordered adoption of surnames by all members of the upper classes of people (ie people who were
granted land rights, not ownership, as all land was owned by the Crown). The custom of applying a
man’s by-name, as it was called, to all his children began in the late 12th century and then spread
slowly to the manorial and yeoman classes with the south of England leading the way. The first
legal recognition of an hereditary surname is found in 1267; it was de Cantebrigg meaning ‘of
Canterbury.’ By 1400 three-quarters of the population are reckoned to have borne hereditary family
names, and the process was complete by about 1450 in England.
Early surnames of the nobility used the French prefix 'de' followed by the place name. Place names
themselves usually had suffixes like (n)ham, meaning home (of). The prefix was often dropped or
combined into the surname. The suffix was also shortened or altered so "nham" could become
"man". At this time there was a place in Sussex call Steddanham which was derived from Stedda
(name of a Saxon thane or baron) and "nham" (home of or estate of). About this time its name
changed to Stedeham and then Stedham which is its name today. The family surname 'de
Steddanham' could just as easily have changed to Stedan or Stednam and thence to Stedman. As
surnames started being used further down the social hierarchy, the trade or profession of the person
was used. In this way the French "le" was used so that le Stedman could have been the steed man
(keeper of horses) or the stede man (a farmer or yeoman). Again the "le" was often dropped or
It should be a simple matter to work out variants of the name and look back in records to see if any
noblemen were called by one of these variants in England at this time. Early records from the 11th
and 12th centuries tend to be from the royal courts and as far as is known, Stedmans do not have a
royal origin. Manorial Court records, where the names of the litigants and accused appear, are more
common in the 13th century.
Origin of the Stedman Surname
Church records only commenced in the 16th century and even then are a little patchy. Many
clergymen were only just literate and few of the ordinary populace could read or write. Regional
accents were strong so you could forgive the poor curate, who was probably not local, trying to
record the family name at baptism. Many variations can be seen in just one Parish (Stedman,
Stidman, Stydman, Studman, Stedmane). The letter 'a' as in Steadman, seemed to come in later
towards the end of the 17th century or early 18th century.
Source : Collins Dictionary
Quite often the spelling changes for the same person in his lifetime. It is interesting that our name,
apart from a few records, has always been spelt the same way. I wonder if this indicates a degree of
literacy amongst our earliest ancestors instructing curates on how to spell the name?
There may not be a single original name but a number of possible original names mutating to form
Stedman. The word Steed was derived from the Proto-Germanic steda meaning stallion or stud
horse. The word Stede meaning a place, position or standing is also Proto-Germanic but similar
words are found around north Europe, eg Stadt, Stadiz, Stedi. So as well as the idea of a nobleman
'de Steddanham' being the original name it could equally have been de Stedeman or, more
prosaically, le Steedman (a man looking after horses).
Stedmans are found widely scattered across Great Britain but in the 19th century were concentrated
in two regions: the home counties south of London, and the Shropshire/Cardiganshire area. A
hundred years later the pattern is only slightly changed:
Source: University College London
Going back in time one would think that the concentration would become even more focused until
you arrive at the original family. Unfortunately records of names before Parish records began can
really only be found in Manorial Court records (unless you are nobility, which we aren't). David
Stedman, a fellow researcher in Shropshire, has plotted the occurrence of Stedmans in manorial
court records in the 13th century when surnames were only just catching on. This is in Appendix 1
together with each report (for some entertaining reading) and shows a fairly widespread occurrence
even as early as this 13th century. It may be that there isn't one source and the name, or similar
names came quite naturally from a word (stede) already in common use.
A colourful story about the Stedmans
One of the problems with genealogy is the "Chinese whispers" problem whereby an ancient
researcher will jump to a conclusion which is picked up and amplified by subsequent researchers,
each one adding a new bit, and eventually the story is assumed to be fact. False validity is often
assigned to such a story merely because of its ancient origins lost in the mists of time. So it is with
the Stedman origins:
At some time prior to 1182, ____ de Steddanham, an English nobleman, went on a pilgrimage to
the Holy Land. He remained there, established a domain for himself - which he called the "Duchy
(Dukedom) of Arabia," and assumed the title "Duke of Arabia." He apparently was a man of hasty
and driving action, so much so that he became known by the nickname "Calcarba, Galearbus or
Calcarbus" (derived from the word calcar, meaning a spur). Hence, "Calcarba, or Calcarbus,
Duke of Arabia."
In the year 1182, Saladin (Sultan of Egypt and Syria), an opposer of the crusades, began conquest
of the Holy Land to recover it to the Saracens (Mohammedans). Calcarba's domain lay in the path
of Saladin's operations, and he and his children (John and Clarissa) fled towards Jerusalem.
Calcarba died before reaching Jerusalem, and John went on to the city. Nothing further is said
concerning Clarissa.
John de Steddanham, son of Calcarba, Duke of Arabia, remained in Jerusalem and assisted in its
defence until it fell to Saladin in 1187. He, evidently, then escaped to other parts of the Holy Land
and assisted in the struggle against the Saracens. In 1191 he joined the forces of King Richard I
who was then on the third crusade to the Holy Land, and assisted in the capture of Acre from the
Saracens under Saladin.
It evidently was here that his surname underwent the change from de Steddanham to Stedman. He
accompanied Richard on his campaign towards Jerusalem where, after a siege of the city, a truce
was concluded with Saladin in 1192. The truce provided that the pilgrims should be free to visit the
Holy Sepulchre, and that a designated part of the seacoast of the Holy Land should belong to the
John Stedman, "being a gallant person and greatly esteemed by the King," was made a Knight of
the Holy Sepulchre and had for arms:
"A cross fleury Vert in a field Or."
In 1192, soon after signing the truce with Saladin, King Richard left the Holy Land on a ship bound
for England, and John Stedman was among those who accompanied him. The ship was wrecked in
the Adriatic Sea near Venice; and Richard, together with his companions, undertook to travel afoot
from Italy to the west coast of the European continent nearest to England. While passing through
Germany, he and his companions were seized and held as prisoners, because of an offence which
Richard previously had given to Archduke Leopold of Austria. In 1194 the prisoners were
ransomed, and they proceeded on their way to England.
According to a tradition published in the Church Times (16 February 1906) of the Anglo-Catholic
Church of England, John Stedman brought with him to England a chalice made from a portion of
wood cut from the cross on which Jesus was crucified. Another story is that this chalice is The Holy
Grail, or cup, from which Jesus and his disciples drank at the time of the last supper in Jerusalem.
The chalice later became known variously as "The Tregaron Healing Cup", "The Strata Florida
Cup," and "The Nant Eos Healing Cup." Numerous persons claimed to have been healed of their
diseases by drinking water from the cup. After many generations its possession passed, via the
monks of Glastonbury, from the Stedman family of Strata Florida, in Wales, to the Powells and, in
1933, it could be seen as a relic in an old-world mansion in the Welsh village of Nanteos. It is now
held in the National Library of Wales after a further colourful history. The truth of the claims for
this chalice or cup are left to you to decide!
After John Stedman (a young and unmarried man) arrived in England as one of King Richard's
knights, the king gave to him a gift of land and the gift of a wife, which latter was in accordance
with the custom of kings to give wives to their unmarried knights. The wife was Joan, daughter and
heiress to Sir John Tatsall of County Lincoln, brother to Robert Lord Tatsall. The land was said to
be in Kent but this could be a misreading of the abbreviation Kt meaning Knight.
Most of the stories seem to be generated in Wales as an English branch of the Stedman family, from
Staffordshire, owned a 34,000 acre estate in Cardiganshire including Strata Florida. Welsh
historians and genealogists had tried to trace the family origins. The earliest reference is by Lewys
Dwnn (about 1613) in his "Heraldic Visitations of the Counties of Carmarthen, Pembroke and
Cardigan". Future historians seemed to repeat and amplify the story adding on their own bits. The
earliest reference to the story starts in a modest fashion with an Elizabethan comedy "Common
Conditions" by John Hunter written in 1576 (see Frontispiece in Appendix 2) and reportedly seen
by the young Shakespeare who thought he could do better than this. The play features Galearbus,
Duke of Arabia, Sedmond (sic) his son and Clarissa his daughter "Set forth with delectable mirth
and pleasant themes". The frontispiece indicates the play is based on an even older story so maybe
this will turn up one day. I have a copy of the original play in a 1913 edition published by Yale
University should anyone wish to read it.
Whilst our origins are not known, it does seem that our branch of the family is from the south east
of England and almost certainly from Sussex since early Tudor times. Our DNA can tell no lies and
this seems to indicate a tribal origin on the male side from central Europe but several thousand
years ago.
Section 2 The Early Stedmans 16th Century - 1725
This section is shown fully in Appendix 3 and is a justification as to why I have picked out these
names as our ancestors. There is not much about the early Stedmans partly because I've done less
research but also because there is less information available. The family seems to have lived in the
same area of W Sussex for many generations.
In the 16th century Rudgwick was the centre for Stedmans (plus spelling variants) in Sussex.
During this century there are 38 baptisms of Stedmans (or name variants) in Rudgwick from when
Parish records began (about 1540) and 55 for the other 385 Parishes in Sussex although nearly all of
them are in Parishes adjacent to Rudgwick. There are a number of Stedmans in Parishes to the north
which are in Surrey which have not been studied. Rudgwick and neighbouring Parishes are in the
high weald area of Sussex which was agriculturally poor and fairly inaccessible. It was not
mentioned in the Doomsday Book. It was largely covered by woodland which was felled to provide
limited grazing areas. The 16th century saw a great expansion due to iron smelting as iron ore
deposits were on the surface and the abundance of wood for charcoal was also readily available.
The later iron masters concentrated on gun founding for the Navy but as canon became larger in
size smelting moved to the south coast in the 17th century although charcoal production continued
for some time afterwards. Certainly Thomas Stedman, the eldest son of the 18 century Ardingly
Stedmans, was known to be a collier (ie a maker of charcoal) so it reasonable to assume that his
father, William, also had something to do with this. Wyllyam and Alys Stedman of Rudgwick,
who I imagine must be related to our Wyllyam, both wrote Wills and "bequeaved to ye belles of
Rugewyck". However, this Wyllyam Stedman only had daughters.
Bapt. in Ardingly
Elizabeth bapt. in Cuckfield
Nathaniel bapt. in Cuckfield
William bapt. in Cuckfield
} move to Sevenaoks
John bapt. in Sevenoaks
Mary bapt. in Sevenoaks
Ann bapt. in Sevenoaks
James bapt. in Speldhurst
Prudence bapt. in Sevenoaks
Philip bapt. in Sevenoaks
Sarah bapt. in Sevenoaks
Susannah bapt. in Sevenoaks
Charles bapt. in Sevenoaks
Thomas bapt. in Sevenoaks
Nathaniel Stedman (1725-1791)
Co-signed a legal document with Francis
Marries Elizabeth Heaver in Withyham,
wife Elizabeth dies. Marries Mary
Parsons in Sevenoaks.
Dies and buried in St Nicholas,
Section 3 - Stedmans become the 'middling sort' 1725 - 1834
3.1 Nathaniel Stedman (1725-1791)
Nathaniel, the fourth son of William and Sarah is one of the more interesting members of the family
on which I have spent a large portion of my time researching. There are two reasons for this. One
is the colourful story that had been passed down to the Rochester Stedmans (a branch related to our
side) in the 19th century about Nathaniel's origins which I tried to verify but found was partly
untrue, partly exaggerated but contained some vestiges of the real story. The other reason is the
more prosaic real story which proved that Nathaniel was from a modest Sussex background but who
(or probably his second wife) made the Stedmans 'the middling sort', a term used by the gentry in
the late 17th early 18th century to describe the rise of the professional middle classes. Four of
Nathaniel's sons became: a mill owner in Rochester, a New Bond St jeweller (reputedly to Queen
Charlotte), an apothecary (our ancestor), and a captain in the Royal Navy (but of a prisoner ship).
In the mid 18th century this would have required a certain amount of funding and some good
connections, not likely to come from a long established rural Sussex family with possible origins in
charcoal burning. From then on most of Nathaniel's descendants, our ancestors, were professional
middle class, very many in the medical field.
First of all the colourful story. The Rochester Stedmans, as I will refer to them, were a solicitor
Richard Stedman (1830 - 1909) and his two sons Harold and Reginald who had spent a great deal of
time in the latter part of the 19th century researching our side of the Stedman family. The
Rochester Stedmans were descendants of Nathaniel (who I shall refer to as snr.) via his eldest son
Nathaniel (jnr.) by his first marriage to Elizabeth Heaver. The story that had been passed down to
them by Richard's uncles, the grandsons of Nathaniel (jnr), was that Nathaniel (snr) was once a
wealthy landowner from the borders of mid Wales who had a large estate and who had lost his
fortune from mortgaging the estate and pursuing an idle life hunting. He had come to Sevenoaks in
about 1754 with his son Nathaniel (jnr) and for a while had been Steward to the Lord Abergavenny.
He had owned a windmill at Tubs Hill in Sevenoaks and a watermill in Speldhurst. He had married
a Mary (possibly Lloyd), who was descended of high Welsh rank, and had had 21 children. I'm
afraid this tale is untrue but it does contain some elements which are woven into the real story.
There was indeed another branch of the Stedman family from mid Wales (referred to earlier), but
who were English, who had owned a large estate (34,000 acres) in a place called Strata Florida (the
Vale of Flowers) in Cardiganshire and, due to the lack of an heir, the property had transferred in the
late 17th century to another family, the Powells, through marriage. These Stedmans were unrelated
to our side of the family, or perhaps very distantly related long before the 16th century where I start
this history.
Nathaniel and Stedman as a combination of two names is not unique but is so rare that it
immediately became clear that there could only be one true story as the Parish records show that he
was the only Nathaniel Stedman at this time. He was the sixth child of William Stedman and Sarah
Watson who lived in the small village of Ardingly in W Sussex, which is geographically quite close
to Sevenoaks. Their eldest son, Thomas, was a collier (ie a maker of charcoal), but I don't know
what the other sons did. By the 18th century the smelting of iron had moved from Sussex but
charcoal was still being produced. Through the 18th century charcoal was slowly displaced by coke
so its future was not looking too good. I suspect that William, the father, was possibly in the same
trade but Ardingly was mainly concerned with agriculture and wool. Nathaniel's stylish signature
(see pictures) at the age of 16½ was found on a document alongside one Francis Warden. The
document related to some land deal on the estate of Lord Montague near Chichester. Many years
later Nathaniel used exactly the same signature when he signed the marriage register at his second
marriage in Sevenoaks. Looking into the history of Francis Warden, the elements of the myth now
become understandable.
Francis Warden was a well connected Cuckfield gentleman (Cuckfield being close to Ardingly)
greatly esteemed by the local community. He never married, was a member of the Inner Temple
and a steward to both the Lords Abergavenny (W Sussex and Kent) and Montague (Chichester
area). The former post he held for his whole working life which coincided with Nathaniel's life.
Interestingly, one of the last mid Wales Stedmans, an Edward Stedman, had also been a member of
the Inner Temple a few years before Francis so the Welsh story may well have been known to him
and passed on to Nathaniel (snr). Inside the Church at Cuckfield is a large memorial to Francis with
an eloquent epitaph of his generous nature. I mentioned that by the age of 16½ Nathaniel could
write well so it is interesting to speculate where he obtained his education. As he was apprenticed
to, or worked for, Francis Warden, it is likely to have been at the free school in Cuckfield which had
been established for some 200 years. Probably Francis would have kept a close eye on the school
for bright young lads.
Nathaniel married Elizabeth Heaver in 1746, who was the eldest daughter of a yeoman miller,
William Heaver. The Heavers came from Crawley where they had milling property but lived in
Cuckfield. Nathaniel and Elizabeth had 4 children three of whom were baptised in Cuckfield.
Some time between the third and fourth one (c 1753/5) they moved to Sevenoaks where John, the
4th child was born. Two of the first three children (Elizabeth and William) died although their
burial records cannot be found. They, or rather two names, were 'cut out' (literally) of William
Heaver's Will, which was written in 1772 shortly before his death leaving only Nathaniel (jnr) who
received a nominal sum of money. Although John survived, he was not in the Will. I have seen the
original Will and it looks as though his is one of the names cut out as there seems to be some
residual mark near the cut-out portion ending in 'on'. Possibly he was cut out of the Will by mistake
and the other cut out name is one of the others who had already died leaving Nathaniel (jnr) as the
only beneficiary. Less than two years after John's birth, Elizabeth, the mother, died in Sevenoaks.
The two surviving children of the first marriage to Elizabeth Heaver were:
1. Nathaniel (1749 - 1807)
Nathaniel (jnr) married Anne Sansom (supposedly a mountaineer's daughter) in
Godmanchester, Huntingdonshire in 1774 returning to Sevenoaks in 1776 where he stayed,
reportedly working for his father until 1783/4. There is a record of Nathaniel Stedman
renting a property in Sevenoaks town in the years (1780, 81 and 82) which I guess is
Nathaniel (jnr). The property is owned by one Benjamin Hubble and in his Will it looks like
an ordinary domestic property (ie no attached mill). He then went to Rochester where he
built two windmills in Star Hill. One is called Friday's Mill which was the handsomest in
Kent. How he met Ann Sansom is unknown as her background cannot be traced. Nothing is
known about the Sansoms so it is possible this is the source of Nathaniel jnr's capital. Their
eldest, John, also became a miller and is said to have invented the ship's propellor from his
knowledge of mills, testing it on the Medway .
2. John (1755 - 1827)
John was said to have accompanied some Lord on his Grand Tour (possibly John Sackville,
3rd Duke of Dorset who would have been a similar age and living in the nearby Knole
House). By some means he sets up a jewellery business in New Bond St. with a Samuel
Vardon and reportedly supplied jewellery to Queen Charlotte (after whom he names his first
child). The business goes bankrupt at one point but seems to start again and expands. He is
inventive and takes out a patent for a new type of clog. He retires, a seemingly wealthy
man, to Horton Kirby Hall in Kent.
Nine months after Elizabeth's death Nathaniel remarried a girl called Mary Parsons of Sevenoaks.
Despite long hours of research I have been unable to track down Mary's origins. Judging by her
marriage signature (see picture) and the fact she went on to have 9 or 10 children my guess is that
she was fairly young. What is interesting is the names given to all her children with Nathaniel, in
order of birth: Mary, Ann, James, Prudence, Susannah, Philip, Sarah, Charles, and Thomas (and
possibly Edmund). Apart from Sarah and Thomas, they are names never, or rarely, used in our
Sussex branch of the Stedmans implying that they are probably Parsons' names.
The children of Nathaniel and Mary were:
1. Mary (1759 - 1828)
Mary married James Mulcock of Dauntsey, Wiltshire. The Mulcocks were yeoman farmers
from near Highworth on the Coleshill House estate but how she met James is unknown. The
whole Mulcock family later moved to Dauntsey and continued farming successfully as they
paid quite a reasonable amount of Land Tax. James and Mary seemed to have one son
only, John. James died in 1806 and Mary moved to Offham, Kent with her son, who later
married Sarah Richardson.
2. Ann (1761 -?)
Ann did not appear to survive.
3. James (1763 - 1828)
See below
4. Prudence (1766)
Died in infancy.
5. Philip (1768 - 1836)
Philip joined the Navy and served on prison ships initially in Kent and later on in
Portsmouth. He married Susannah Tarbut in Kent and had 8 children. He was purportedly a
Captain but I can only find a record where he is Third Mate to his younger brother, Charles,
on the Prison Ship 'Captivity' in 1815 in Portsmouth.
6. Sarah (1770 - ?)
Did not appear to survive.
7. Susannah "Sukey" (1772 - 1845)
Sukey went to Brinkworth, Wiltshire (near Dauntsey) presumably at her sister's suggestion.
She was a school teacher and married a local farm labourer Joseph Blake. They had one
daughter. Joseph died and Sukey moved back to West Malling where she was looked after
by her brother James.
8. Charles (1774 - ?)
Charles was a Captain in the Navy in charge of prison ships in Portsmouth. He married
Mary Ann Edney and lived in Portsea. He had 4 children.
9. Thomas (1778 - 1846?)
Very little is known about Thomas. He is mentioned in his mother's Will of 1811. There is
a record of a Thomas Stedman dying in St Margaret's Rochester close to Nathaniel jnr's
10. Edmund (1781 - ?)
Edmund is born in Sevenoaks to Nathaniel Stedman. He could be the son of Nathaniel jnr
or snr but, as Mary Stedman would be quite old at this point, Nathaniel jnr is more likely.
Edmund is not mentioned in Mary's Will or Nathaniel jnr's Will so presumably he died quite
Nothing has been found about what Nathaniel did or where the family lived in Sevenoaks. As
mentioned the Rochester Stedmans claimed that Nathaniel owned a mill at Tubs Hill in Sevenoaks
and also a mill in Speldhurst where James was baptised. Certainly Nathaniel's first father-in-law
was a miller and Nathaniel jnr went on to become a wealthy miller in Rochester. However, no
records have yet been found. If he had been a property owner, then land tax records would show
this and he would also have left a Will. Nathaniel died in 1791 and was buried at St Nicolas,
Sevenoaks although I don't believe the grave can be located today.
Mary Parsons
Mary Parsons is the mystery member of the family. At her marriage to Nathaniel in Sevenoaks she
is in the records as "of this Parish" although that does not have huge significance. She is certainly
not born there. Could Elizabeth have required nursing after John was born and Mary was providing
the service?
Following Nathaniel's death in 1791, Mary started acquiring property. It is unusual for a women to
own property in the 18th century due to the Laws of Coverture. The normaI pattern was that
property brought into a marriage by a woman came under the control of the husband. On his death,
the income from the property would go to the widow and on her death the property would pass
down to the children. As a widow, though, she would have been able to own property but one
wonders where her money came from. I doubt it came from her late husband because, if he had had
money/property he is likely to have had a Will which I have not been able to locate. I do have
Mary's Will. She left all her property to her six surviving children (Mary, James, Susannah [known
as Sukey], Philip, Charles and Thomas) but nothing to the two sons from Nathaniel snr's first wife,
whom she brought up but does not even mention in her Will.
From a Sun Fire Insurance document, Mary insured two properties in Nov 1791 some seven months
after Nathaniel died. The properties are called Stevens's Row in Chevening, a Parish adjacent to
Sevenoaks and state that she had purchased them from one Edward Sampson (no, not Sansom!). I
cannot find Stevens's Row, Chevening but in her Will written in 1804 she has 4 rented out
properties in Whitley Row, Chevening. They have the same tenants in them so I guess they were
renamed and she added two more properties to the original two. Sometime before 1794 she built a
new house on Gallows Common, Sevenoaks adjacent to St Johns Hill just below the old Parish
workhouse (see map in pictures) as she is recorded as buying one acre of land in front of her newly
built house. Later she adds another dwelling to this property.
The Boar's Head seal
The boar's head seal (see pictures), passed down to us, is on the Cardiganshire Stedman Coat of
Arms although other Stedman Arms bear this device. The Rochester Letters refer to both Nathaniel
junior's family and James's family having this seal. It was possibly 'borrowed' by Nathaniel snr for
his own use (at Francis Warden's suggestion?). According to the College of Heraldry, there is no
such thing as a family Coat of Arms. They are awarded on a personal basis but the eldest sons
thereafter are permitted to use them. Various devices from a Coat of Arms were used for decoration
or seals and often used by other members of the family. As the boar's head has passed down to us
and has been adopted by the family, we are quite at liberty to continue using it but it has no heraldic
The Rochester Museum family tree
The full Rochester Stedman story is well documented with their letters to cousins and to a Welsh
gentleman by the name of Stedman Thomas, which I found in the Welsh National Library. The
information in them is coloured but not that far from the truth apart from Nathaniel's (snr) origins
which are clearly wishful thinking. The letters are inconclusive but this did not stop the Rochester
Stedmans producing a huge family tree in 1905 now held in the Rochester museum. This tree is
well decorated with family crests, many of which are from erroneous assumptions, as the Victorians
were quite keen to show they were from good families. The upper half of the tree consists of the
well documented 'Welsh' and Staffordshire Stedmans going back to 1140. There is a slightly
awkward break at Nathaniel on their chart as they were unable to prove the connection with the
Cardiganshire family. Their own Rochester side of the family itself contains a number of errors
relating to their family. However, it also includes our side of the family (see below) down to and
including Nigel and Noel Stedman, which is 100% accurate. It has information of which I was
unaware such as Warneford Stedman's unfortunate Australian experience plus the dates of Lillian's
marriage to Osmund (FOS) in Hong Kong (HK) and the birth dates of Noel and Nigel. Who
provided this, as overseas information like this is pretty hard to find even today? It could have been
Eustace Stedman. He was a contributor to an Oxford journal called 'Notes and Queries' a kind of
early blog which is still in publication. Reginald Stedman had sent in a query about the Stedman
family in 1901 and Eustace was a contributor some 20 years later so maybe he had been a reader in
1901. Another source could have been Garforth Drury, Aunt Vigny's second husband, who had
drawn up the Savignac family tree. Another possibility is Frederick Stedman, FOS's uncle, who
had retired from the army by 1879, had remained unmarried and did not die until 1909.
There are other tantalising links which need to be researched quite apart from establishing where
the family lived in Sevenoaks, what Nathaniel snr got up to and how the children got into such
widely varied professions from such a modest rural background. Other odd links are, for example,
the Heavers who often used the church in Withyham for marriages (by licence) even though they
didn't live there. Nathaniel married Elizabeth Heaver in Withyham. Withyham is the original estate
of the Sackvilles (of Knole House, Sevenoaks) where they have their own chapel and sepulchre.
When Mary Stedman built her property in Sevenoaks and expanded it to include land between her
house and the workhouse in 1794, those papers are held in the Kent Library with the Sackville
papers. Almost certainly Francis Warden would have known the Sackvilles so is there any
connection? How did Mary's step-children and children get into such diverse and seemingly
successful careers requiring some pretty good connections? Could the Sansom family have
anything to do with it and could they have provided the funds for Nathaniel jnr to build his
impressive mills in Rochester? Who was the Lord that John Stedman accompanied around his
European Grand Tour? One of the properties in Chevening many years later, in the 1841 census,
was occupied by a James and Mary Parsons and their young children but no connection with Mary
has yet been found.
There is also still the search for Mary Parsons. The closest data seems to be a Parsons family from
St Martin-in-the-Fields where a Thomas Parsons married a Mary Sansom on the 22nd February
1731. They have a son Robert who is baptised on 22nd April 1734. There are also a number of
children baptised in St James Westminster to a Mary and Thomas Parsons: Mary, Elizabeth,
Thomas, Frances and Charles. This Mary was baptised on 19th Feb 1740 so is of the right age. It is
not known if these two families are one and the same.
Mary's Will was witnessed by one Robert Parsons, a christian name which James Stedman uses for
one of his sons and which has continued in the family. The Clerk of Sevenoaks was one Rev.
Robert Parsons, slightly younger than Mary and originally from a well established Suffolk family of
lawyers and vicars. Unfortunately that family did not have a Mary of an appropriate age to link him
with our Mary.
Bapt. in Speldhurst
Ann bapt W Malling
Robert bapt W Malling
Richard bapt W Malling
Silas bapt W Malling
Sarah bapt W Malling
Francis bapt W Malling
William bapt W Malling
Eliza bapt W Malling
Dies and buried in W Malling
James Stedman (1763-1828)
Marries Elizabeth Martin of Plaxtol
James bapt W Malling
3.2 James Stedman (1763-1828)
James was the third child but eldest son of Nathaniel Stedman by his second marriage, to Mary
Parsons. Nathaniel had already moved from Sussex to Sevenoaks but James was baptised in
Speldhurst, very close to Tunbridge Wells. James's elder sisters by this second marriage, Mary and
Ann, were baptised in Sevenoaks as were all his younger brothers and sisters Prudence, Philip,
Sarah, Susannah, Charles and Thomas. The Rochester letters claim that Nathaniel had a watermill
in Speldhurst but as he was only there a couple of years this may not be true. There certainly were a
large number of small watermills around Speldhurst at that time.
James became a "Chymist and Druggist" which by the late 18th century was becoming established
as a profession requiring formal qualifications, or at least an apprenticeship. He founded the
pharmacy shop in West Malling where he stayed for the remainder of his life. In 1788 he married
Elizabeth Martin of nearby Plaxtol, the daughter of Francis Martin, a shopkeeper in Plaxtol.
Elizabeth put her Parish down as W Malling which has led some people to think she was the
Elizabeth of one Edward Martin of W Malling. Ours was most certainly the one from Plaxtol. Her
marriage in W Malling was witnessed by her father, Francis Martin. In his Will, Francis forgives
James Stedman, Chemist of W Malling, 'sums indebted'. In the 1851 census Elizabeth Stedman
gave her place of birth as Plaxtol so there is no doubt that she was the daughter of Francis Martin of
James and Elizabeth had 11 children.:
1. James (1788 - 1861).
He was a surgeon and lived at Bishop's Croft, 1 Mount Pleasant, Guildford (now a block
of flats). He was mayor of Guildford on three occasions (1824, 32 and 39). He married
Sarah Remington, daughter of Dr. Thomas Remington and Anne Read. James and
Sarah's children were: Dr. James Remington Stedman (1817 - 1891); Anne Stedman
(1819 - ?); Harriet Stedman (1820 -?); Charles and Elizabeth (1821/22) who died in
infancy; Eliza Stedman (1824 - 1916); Henry (1826) who died in infancy; Rev. William
Newland Stedman (1828 - 1895). James is buried in St Mary’s Guildford where there is
(or rather was) a memorial stone. His eldest son, James Remington, had two daughters
(Annie Ellen and Rosa Harriett) and so far I have only found one daughter of William
Newland (Ada Mary). As the other male Stedmans died in infancy, it would seem that
the Stedman name died out down this line.
2. Anne (1790 - 1813) who I don't think married.
3. Robert (1792 - 1862) see below.
4. Richard (1794 -1852)
He was a Chemist and married Sarah Broomfield in 1820 in Newington, Surrey. Their
first son was Richard Broomfield who was born in 1821 and died in W Malling in 1897.
Richard Broomfield married Ellen Fremlin and had 4 sons and 2 daughters. Their eldest
son was William Richard and I was in touch with his grandson, Frank Stedman, before
he died a few years ago. Frank joined in the DNA study. Richard and Sarah’s 5 other
children (3 sons and 2 daughters) were all born in Billericay, Essex. One of the sons
(William) ran a Chemists in Ashford, Kent which in turn was run by one of his sons,
Frank. Richard and Sarah at some point between 1839 and 1844 moved to Aylesbury
where they ran the Chemists in Market Sq. By 1854 this Chemists was being run by their
youngest son, Charles.
5. Silas (1796 - 1863)
Took his name from his uncle on the Martin side of the family (Elizabeth’s eldest
brother). He married Charlotte Stilwell of Hillingdon. They had 7 daughters and 2 sons
all born in Eltham. Silas was a surgeon qualifying in 1818 and practising in London.
His eldest son Silas Stilwell, married Harriet Stedman (his cousin) and became a surgeon
in Arundel, Sussex but later he emigrated to Christchurch, New Zealand. Their eldest
son, Silas James, matriculated from Queens College, Oxford in 1865 and became a
doctor. There is no trace of James William, the second son of Silas and Charlotte.
6. Mary, Sarah, Francis and Eliza don't seem to marry or die young.
7. William (1808 - 1850)
The youngest son, was a Chemist and inherited the W Malling Chemists business. He
married Sarah Anne Whiting from Addington, Kent and had 4 sons and 2 daughters. He
died quite young in 1850 as his youngest son, Alfred was christened on 17
Feb 1850
but by the time William’s mother, Elizabeth, writes her Will on 15
Oct 1850 he is
referred to as ‘my late son, William’. In the 1851 census, the Chemists was already
being run by Richard Broomfield Stedman. In the 1871 census, Sarah Anne was still
living in High St., W Malling with daughters Ellen and Jane, and with Alfred (21), a
Draper. The eldest two sons, William and James can’t be traced. The third son, George,
became a Brewery Manager in Milton-in-Gravesend and had 2 sons and 1 daughter.
Alfred married, had 2 sons and 3 daughters. He moved to Hambledon, Hampshire but
eventually became a Restaurateur in the Channel Islands.
The Chemist shop in West Malling was taken over by James' youngest son, William and although
he had 4 sons, he died before they were old enough to take the business on, so it passed to one of
James's grandsons, Richard Broomfield Stedman, the son of Richard Stedman. He ran the business
until some time after 1891 when he described it as 'pharmaceutical chemist, bookseller, stationer
and circulating library'. (An odd mixture, but for those readers old enough they may remember
borrowing books from the library of Boots the Chemists). He passed the business to his youngest
son Arthur who was running it in 1901. It is now Boots the Chemist (see picture) and I have
recently met someone who was born in W Malling c 1950 and who remembers the shop which was
still referred to as Stedman's Chemists.
James remained in West Malling all his life and took it upon himself to look after his two sisters,
Mary and Sukey, when their respective husbands died and they came back to Kent. I have a copy
of James's Will.
Baptised in West Malling
Ships doctor in Calcutta
Robert Savignac born in Exeter
Frederick Savignac born in Sevenoaks
Warneford Savignac born in Sevenoaks
Arthur born in Sevenoaks
Living in Gt Bookham in 1841 census.
Dies and is buried in Gt Bookham
Robert Stedman (1792-1862)
Registered as a Member of the Royal
College of Surgeons
Living in Littleham,nr Exmouth. Marries
Theodosia Mary Savignac in Carshalton
In Pigots Directory in Sevenoaks.
Medical referee to the General Annuity
Endowment Association
In Bookham with Theodosia, Frederick
and mother-in-law Mary Savignac
In Bookham with Theodosia, Warneford
and sister-in-law Mary Hall
3.3 Robert Stedman (1792-1862)
Robert was the second son of James, the chemist and druggist of West Malling.
Robert was a surgeon but very little is known about his early life. He became a Member of the
Royal College of Surgeons in 1815. There is a letter in the Provincial Medical and Surgical Journal
of Jan 1847 from a Naval Surgeon. He interviewed Robert who relayed to him his experiences of
treating cholera aboard a ship in an estuary near Calcutta in 1817. Keeping in mind that two of
Robert's uncles were in the Navy maybe Robert had some sort of commission. Robert was the first
on board to contract cholera but developed a successful treatment to cure himself. Later, the entire
crew contracted cholera and all survived.
Robert married Theodosia Mary Savignac in 1826 in Carshalton, Surrey but giving his Parish as
Littleham, near Exmouth in Devon. By 1828 he and Mary had moved from Littleham to
Sevenoaks. The Savignac family were originally Huguenots from Niort coming to England in 1701
as a result of the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. They settled in St Olaves, Southwark and were
‘oyle leather dressers’. Whether due to their trade or some other factor, the Savignac name died out
as they seemed to die fairly young and often childless. One of the last ones was Emma Savignac
who was witness to Robert’s marriage on 1
Aug 1826 in Carshalton. Emma died a spinster in
1841 aged 48. I am not sure who she was as she does not feature in the Savignac family tree drawn
up by Garforth Drury (see below). Theodosia’s father, James Savignac (who ‘led a wandering life’)
died in 1847. For some reason, the Stedman family seems to have made a special effort to preserve
the name by using it as a first or middle name and for females as well as males. There is an active
branch of the Savignac family in the USA with records kept by one David Savignac of Crofton,
Robert and Theodosia had four sons:
1. Robert Savignac (1827 -1874)
Robert Savignac was born in Exeter and became a doctor in Sharnbrook, Bedfordshire.
Sadly his wife died during, or close to, the birth of their second son, Francis, the first son
having died very young. Robert himself died two years later leaving Fanny, Maude and
Francis as orphans.
2. Frederick (1828 - 1909), was born in Sevenoaks and he also became a doctor spending
most of his life as an army surgeon in India and never marrying. He was a founder of Frere
Cottages in Bookham, almshouses built in honour of Sir Bartle Frere, a hero of the Indian
3. Warneford (1830 - 73) was the third of Robert's sons and was a pharmacist. He lived at
home but was not a happy soul. At the age of 19 he was admitted to St Luke's Lunatic
Asylum in London as a private patient. However, not long after that he is to be found in
Gawler, South Australia where he married Sarah Anne Holloway in 1852. Sadly, his new
wife died in childbirth together with their child. He returned to England and lived with his
parents in Bookham but died in 1873 at the age of 43.
4. Arthur (1834 - 94)
See below.
In Sevenoaks, Robert Stedman is listed in Pigot’s Directory in 1840 as a Surgeon and medical
referee to the General Annuity Endowment Association. Soon after this he must have moved to Gt
Bookham, Surrey to set up his private surgery as he is listed there in the 1841 census. Robert and
Theodosia both died and are buried in Gt Bookham but I have not found their headstones in St
Nicolas, the parish church. However, the headstone of Mary Savignac, Theodosia’s mother, is
there. She is listed in the 1851 census in Bookham, one assumes living there as her husband,
James, had died in 1847 in Islington.
Robert probably moved to Sevenoaks from Exmouth to practise because of family connections in
the locality, but what took Robert to the Leatherhead district to start a new practice? One answer
could be that his elder brother James, who was a successful surgeon in Guildford, had suggested the
idea. Sevenoaks was certainly expanding in those days but the Guildford-Leatherhead stretch of
country was very fashionable with back-to-back mini country estates of London businessmen – a
good place to establish a practice. In the 1851 Gt Bookham census, however, he described himself
as Surgeon, London Royal Hospital so maybe he had a consultancy there as well.
Enters Tonbridge School
Leaves Tonbridge School
Asst to Dr Carter, Pewsey, Marlborough
Theodosia 'Vigny” born in Cullompton
Eustace Arthur born in G Bookham
Ernest Allen born in G Bookham
Savignac Bell born in G Bookham
Dies and is buried in Gt Bookham
Arthur Stedman (1834-1894)
Born in Seveoaks 6
Member of the Royal College of
Marries Sarah Carter in Marlborough
Frederick born/dies in Cookham
FOS born in Tiverton. Move to Gt
Becomes guardian to Maude (3) and
Francis (1) who come to live in Bookham
Section 4 - The Victorian and modern Stedmans 1834 - today
4.1 Arthur Stedman (1834-1894)
Arthur, the youngest of Robert Stedman's four sons, was educated at Tonbridge School, Kent
(1843-48) as was his elder brother Robert Savignac. He was apprenticed to Mr Miles of Gillingham
before entering medical school at University College. Arthur became a member of the Royal
College of Surgeons in 1855 gaining a Licentiate in Midwifery and also a Licentiate from the
Society of Apothecaries. He first worked as an assistant to Dr Charles Henry Carter in Pewsey near
Marlborough. After Pewsey he practised in Cookham, Berkshire and, in March 1859 , married
Sarah Carter, Charles' sister, in St Peter and St Paul's Church, Marlborough. He gave his place of
residence on his marriage certificate as Gt Bookham so presumably he had finished in Pewsey.
Sarah was 33 and Arthur 25. Sarah was from a fairly large Marlborough based family. Her father,
William Carter, was originally a herald painter from Cricklade who had married Elizabeth New
from Collingbourne Kingston. I assume there was not a great call for herald painters in Wiltshire as
some time before 1841 William became the innkeeper of the Ailesbury Arms in Marlborough, one
of the large staging hotels on the Great West road, where he remained for the rest of his life.
Sarah was one of 14 children, all born in Marlborough, but at least 5 died in infancy or didn't
survive childhood. Her younger brother, James, took over the running of the Ailesbury Arms from
his father. He was also a farmer and Mayor of Marlborough in 1891. One of his sons, Herbert, went
to Australia and became the assistant Master of Sydney grammar School and the President of the
NSW Linnean Society, discovering a number of new species.
Sarah had spent the earlier part of her adult life looking after children. She helped at the Poor
House (later, St Lukes on Marlborough Common) and after that she helped to raise the daughter of
John Pyke, a solicitor and her brother-in-law, who lived in Oxford St. Marlborough. His wife, one
of Sarah's sisters, had died in 1850 when their daughter, Frances, was only 3. Sadly, John Pyke
himself died in 1855.
Sarah and Arthur lived in Cookham for a short while where their first son, Savignac Frederick, was
born but he died during or soon after birth. They then moved to Cullompton, Devon for a short
while until Robert Stedman, his father, died in Oct 1862 and Arthur took over the surgery in Gt
As mentioned above, Arthur's eldest brother, Robert Savignac, and his wife, Fanny, died within two
years of each other shortly after their fourth child, Francis Robert, was born. Arthur became the
guardian of the two youngest children, Francis and Maude, the oldest child, Fanny going to live
with her grandfather in Wellingborough. So Francis and Maude were brought up in Bookham in
the same household as Arthur and Sarah's children. Francis and Maude never married and for a
while lived in the same house in Oxshott. Maude died quite young in 1924 but Francis, despite a
war wound from WW1, survived until 1951.
Arthur and Sarah's children were:
1. Savignac Frederick (1859 - 1859)
He was born in Cookham, Berks but died in infancy.
2. Theodosia Mary Savignac (1861 - 1935),
Known as Aunt Vigny, was born in Cullompton, Devon. Her mother, Sarah, belonged to
the Plymouth Brethren, a recently formed low church non-conformist movement who
believed in leading a pure frugal life with few if any modern distractions. Nigel Stedman
said that Vigny had had a strict upbringing but she eloped when she was under 21 and
married some scoundrel from Dover. She was under 21 when she married but she married
in St Nicolas, Bookham, with her father as witness so not elopement. She married Charles
Havelock Mowll of Dover. Charles' father was a wealthy coal merchant from Dover who
shipped in coal from Tyneside. He was a JP, a Freeman of the City of London and a Baron
of the Cinque Ports. Charles followed the same business. The marriage was traumatic with
Vigny suing for divorce 10 years later on the grounds of Charles' absence, cruelty and
adultery. The petition failed in Dec 1891 and during the lengthy proceedings Vigny stayed
with FOS her younger brother in Sevenoaks. Charles died a few months after the case on
2nd March 1892 from post-operative shock after an operation to remove a diseased kidney
from tuberculosis. Within four weeks of Charles' death Vigny had had both the sons
baptised. In 1900 Vigny married Garforth Drury, a solicitor from Newcastle and lived near
Newcastle with him for the rest of her life. Garforth was much liked by the family but there
were no children by the second marriage. The eldest of the two Mowll boys, Harold, was a
marine engineer and joined the merchant navy. Sadly he was killed right at the end of the
First World war but had married and produced one son, Garforth, before the outbreak of the
war. Garforth moved to Florida and I managed to speak to him a few years ago before his
death. I am in touch with his daughter, Carolyn. Alan, the younger of the two boys from
the Mowll marriage suffered from ill health. I don't know if he was paraplegic but Vigny
claimed he needed constant nursing as a boy due to bone problems in the lower limbs. He
remained unmarried but didn't die though until 1963, in France I believe. In WW1 Vigny
was a nurse.
3. Frederic Osmund Robert (1862 - 1927) FOS
see below
4. Eustace Arthur (1865 - 1942)
Eustace was born in Great Bookham and went to Epsom Downs Royal Medical Benevolent
College (1878 - 1882). He probably started to study medicine, against his will according to
Nigel Stedman. He became a bank clerk with Barclays in north London. His interests were
art, literature and archaeology. He lived with his mother in Wallington until she died when
he moved into lodgings in north London. On retiring, he married his landlady, Phoebe
Pinches, and moved to Tisbury, Wiltshire. We have not found many of his pictures although
Vigny had one which was painted in Hong Kong. He published at least one book ("Adam
Lindsay Gordon: The Laureate of the Centaurs" 1933). There is a reference to Mr and Mrs
Eustace A Stedman (in Exploring Surrey's Past) sending a Christmas card to the nephews
and nieces of Charles Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) probably 1932 or 33. Dodgson died in
Guildford in 1898 at his sister's home.
5. Ernest Allen (1867 - 86)
Also went to Epsom Downs Royal Medical Benevolent College (1880 - 1883). He went on
to St Thomas' Hospital but died at home from an illness in 1886. From his death certificate
it is likely that he had contracted an illness as a boy which had weakened his immune
system as he died from a fairly ordinary infectious disease.
6. Savignac Bell (1871 - 1935)
Also went to Epsom Downs Royal Medical Benevolent College but has a fairly odd entry in
the registers: 1881 - 82 and re-entered 1886 -1889. Epsom had a junior school so he must
have been sent to that at first. In the summer of 1882 there was a 'Great Disturbance' at
Epsom College where a number of pupils started a riot. Many were expelled but I have been
in touch with their archivist and happily it did not involve Stedmans. Perhaps Arthur and
Sarah thought it wisest to remove him until he was older. After senior school at Epsom he
went on to St Thomas's Hospital and qualified, going into general practice at Market Rasen,
Lincolnshire before marrying and emigrating to Ceylon, eventually becoming a tea planter.
While in Lincolnshire he had married Jane Wheway the daughter of a musician. They had
two daughters but I can only find records of one, Doris. I suspect the other daughter, Joan,
died in Ceylon although she is mentioned in FOS' Will. Doris was sent to England to be
schooled and lived in Bramcote for a while. Nigel kept in touch with Doris and her
descendants, who eventually moved to Australia.
From his obituary in the British Medical Journal, Arthur took a great interest in local affairs and
was the Medical Officer for St John's College, Leatherhead. He also had a keen interest in flowers
and built up a significant herbarium which was bequeathed to Lord Ashcombe. He took a special
interest in the disadvantaged and was regarded locally with the greatest esteem. He is remembered
from a first hand account as having a long beard but sadly we have no photographs of him. He died
in 1894 after a painful illness.
Sarah was a member of the Plymouth Brethren and died in 1905 asking that the brethren should
bury her with minimum fuss and expense. I do not know if Sarah joined the Brethren in
Marlborough or later on. There is no evidence that other members of the Carter family were
Brethren, indeed, rather the opposite. After Arthur died she moved to Wallington possibly
something to do with the sect as she refers to two Brethren from there who are to arrange her
funeral. The way of life of the Brethren was to live a frugal life and be kind to other people. My
father Nigel reckoned that she starved her children but I think this was more to do with the odd way
they treated meals and eating. Judging from her detailed Will, she seemed to be a very kindly lady
but certainly mindful of her possessions and who was to have them. In his detailed Will, Arthur
makes provision for her income which contains an obligation to maintain Vigny, unless Vigny
remarries, which seems to indicate a fairly stormy relationship between mother and daughter..
Enters Epsom College
Gains MRCS from Charing X Hosp.
Gains his MD at Charing X Hosp
Practising in Sevenoaks
Moves to Hong Kong
Buys land to build Peak Hospital
Meets and marries Lillian Le Mesurier
Noel born in Maidenhead, Berks
Nigel born in HK
Visits/tours Europe with family
Returns to HK
Gwen born in HK
Visits England with family
Returns to HK
Visits England with family
Returns to HK
Visits England with family
Returns to HK
Travels to England with Chinese
Posted to the front line in France in April
Lillian gets back to England
Moves into Bramcote
Frederick Osmund Stedman (1862-1927)
Born in Tiverton 31
Baptised 27
March in Bookham
Leaves Epsom College. Enters Charing X
Dies 2
Feb and is buried in Weybridge
4.2 Osmund Stedman (FOS) (1862-1927)
Frederick Osmund Robert Stedman is usually referred to as FOS although his family called him
Osmund. He was born in Tiverton, Devon but christened in Bookham where his father had to take
over the family surgery at short notice. He attended Epsom Downs Royal Medical Benevolent
College (1875 - 1881). He was in their 1st XV rugger team (see photo) and judging by his modest
stature and determined look I would guess could have been their scrum half.
FOS gained a scholarship to Charing Cross Hospital in 1881. He gained his MRCS in 1885 after
winning a series of scholarship medals including the Governor's Clinical Gold Medal, and his MD
on Dec 19 1888. At Charing Cross he was House Surgeon, House Physician, and Surgeon
Registrar. He was also House Physician, National Hospital for Paralysis and Epilepsy, London and
clinical assistant, Moorefield's Eye Hospital.
He went into General Practice at Leighton Buzzard but at some point he moved to Sevenoaks to
practise as he is listed in the 1891 Pigot’s Directory as Dr Osmund Stedman, 34 High St,
Sevenoaks. In March 1893 he went to Hong Kong at the invitation of a Dr James Cantlie. The
latter had gone to Hong Kong in 1888, had founded the College of Medicine for Chinese and had
also set up a surgical practice in the Mount Kellett district. He was apparently not happy with the
matrons running the practice and contacted his old hospital in Charing Cross seeking a young gold
medal doctor presumably to help run the practice but also perhaps at the College. FOS later had a
couple of papers published in the BMJ so it is likely he had an academic interest. FOS is first
registered to practise in HK on 5 May 1894. James Cantlie left HK in 1896 due to ill health. With
two colleagues (Harrington and Rennie) FOS bought land in 1898 above the Peak Hotel from the
hotel owner, Mr Ede, and founded the Peak Hospital together with some nearby very comfortable
accommodation for doctors known as "Formosa" (see images). Later on he was also a visiting
consultant at the newly opened Matilda Hospital and was also President of the HK and China
branch of the BMA. He was also a Supernumerary Surgeon-Lieutenant, Hong Kong Volunteer
Corps (December 2, 1896); appointed member and secretary of the Medical Board (December 7,
1908 and again on December 4, 1911); Justice of the Peace; and member of Hong Kong Club.
He married Lillian Le Mesurier in Hong Kong on 15
May 1899. Therein lies a tale. Lillian was
the youngest daughter of Thomas Augustus Le Mesurier, a family whose origins were Alderney,
Channel Islands. Thomas was a Lt. Col. in the Army Service Corps so the family moved around
quite a bit. When Lillian was only 10 her mother died. Thomas re-married four years later a widow
in Yorkshire, Jane Slinger from Durham. Jane was the daughter of Nicholas Oliver a surgeon. She
first married Francis Slinger from York whose family were wholesalers and manufacturers of
pharmaceuticals. As Thomas was responsible for provisions it is possible that this is how he met
Jane. Francis died only fours years after the marriage. When Thomas remarried, Lillian's siblings
were by then in their late teens or twenties leaving her on her own with her new step-mother, who
had a daughter, Irene Cynthia, by Thomas some two years later. Thomas and Jane lived in London
and Jane was quite strict with the young Lillian. Lillian was an unpaid nanny to the child and led a
very constrained life in their house in Bayswater. She was allowed out to the St Petersburgh Place
church across Hyde Park and the only visitor to the house was the local vicar who took pity on
Lillian. Contact was made with Lillian's sister, Maud, who was married to a well-off banker in
Hong Kong, Bendyshe Layton from Suffolk. Maud arranged for Lillian's passage to HK. Jane
objected but Thomas overrode his wife's wishes and allowed Lillian to go to HK providing she was
chaperoned by the vicar and his wife. Maud introduced Lillian to FOS and was married in HK only
returning to England after they were married.
FOS and Lillian's children were:
1. Noel Warneford (1900 - 1970)
He was born in August in Maidenhead, Berks as FOS and Lillian had returned to the UK in
July 1899 shortly after their marriage and did not return to HK until Sept 1901. The
location in the UK was connected to Lillian's elder sister and family who appear in the
photos taken at that time. Noel grew up in HK but was sent to prep school to Sutherland
House (later Woodcote House) in Surrey in 1909. He went on from there to Repton in Sept
1914 finishing in 1918. Later in 1918 he is recorded as being at the Inns of Court Officer
Training Corps (probably Catterick) but he did not get a commission as the war had ended.
Instead he became an insurance salesman for the N British and Mercantile Insurance Co.,
Manchester. However, in 1922 or 1923 he left England for Shanghai. It is not known what
he did there but he returned to England in 1924 giving his profession as Insurance on the
shipping register. In 1926 he once again left England but for Kenya this time giving his
profession as Farmer. At some point he moved to Zululand, Natal, S Africa, again as a
farmer, and married Catherine Maud Terry in March 1928 in Durban. They had three
children Rosemary, Marjorie May and Michael.
2. Nigel Savignac (1901- 1982) see below.
3. Gwendoline Le Mesurier (1906 - 1986)
She was born in HK and travelled with her mother. As the trips were usually quite long (see
Appendix 4) her schooling was quite varied. I believe she had a governess but also attended
many different schools. The trips to the UK were always across the Pacific to Canada or the
west coast of the USA.
- May 1909 to Sep 1910. To settle the boys into their new prep school
- Summer 1912 (?) to Sept 1913. Sports day at Sutherland House (inter alia)
- July 1915 to June 1916. A traumatic trip with a typhoon in Japan and a 6 month delay in
Canada. Slept on the deck crossing the Atlantic as it was a few months following the
sinking of the Lusitania.
- 1918/1919. A long trip home. Arrived in Canada in June 1918 but didn't get back to the
UK until Jan 1919.
Gwen married Ernest Charles Goldsworthy in 1932, a marine engineer who originally came
from Oxford. They had two daughters, Jennifer and Veronica.
During WW1 FOS, who could speak Cantonese, returned to Europe with 5 other officers in
December 1917 and a gang of nearly 4000 Chinese labourers on two boats who were brought over
to dig the trenches and other front line labouring work. From his Victory Medal citation, FOS
entered the theatre of war in April 1918 just north of Arras in France as a Lieutenant in the Royal
Army Medical Corps attached to the 43rd Chinese Labour Corps. It is not known when he returned
to England or whether he returned to HK but the Chinese Labour Corps continued after the war to
help clean up the battlefields. In the 1919 medical register FOS gave his address as the Alexandra
Buildings, HK but this could have been out-of-date information. He represented HK in the Central
Council of the BMA in 1920 and was also on the Dominions Committee implying that he was UK
based. The family photo albums show him in the UK in 1920.
Lillian and Gwen finally got back to England in early 1919 and the family settled in Bramcote,
Weybridge. FOS was one of the leading lights and Treasurer in the relocation to Church St. of the
Weybridge Hospital in 1923, now the Sam Beare Hospice. He died of a heart attack quite suddenly
in Feb 1927 having been on the golf course the day before. In Nov 1929 Lillian and Gwen went to
S Africa and stayed there until Rosemary, Noel's first child, was born. Some time after 1937 Lillian
moved to Beechwood Ave., Oatlands where she continued to live until her death in 1950. She had
a chauffeur, Wey, who used to drive her round in a Wolseley car and a maid, Patience Bedford.
Wey's uniform buttons were given to me by the late Jennifer Thornton (neé Goldsworthy, Gwen's
daughter and my cousin) sent to her by Wey's daughter-in-law Patricia.
4.3 Nigel Stedman (1901-1982)
Nigel was born in Hong Kong in 1901 only 13½ months after his elder brother Noel but nearly 6
years before his sister, Gwen. His father, Osmund, I guess was very involved with his career
spending only limited amounts of time with the family. Nonetheless, although a difficult climate in
which to live, the ex-patriot community in HK lived a fairly sociable life with many servants to
carry out everyday tasks including the raising of children. The family returned to Europe on four
occasions each time for about one year. In 1904/5 they came with the two boys and toured Europe
and the UK returning with a Governess. In 1909 they came over, this time with Gwen, to settle the
boys into their new prep school returning in 1910. In 1912 they came over to see the boys in their
prep school years and in 1915 they came over to see Nigel settled into Malvern and Noel who was
already at Repton.
Although close in age to Noel, my father's more introvert character was quite different to Noel's
outgoing approach to life. He never seemed to get on with Noel and said they were always fighting.
From an early age my father was bigger than Noel (a Le Measurier trait?) so he always came off
best. A couple of years after Gwen was born it was quite clear that the education of the boys could
not be provided in HK and they were sent to prep school in England, Sutherland House (later to
become Woodcote House). Nigel, I guess, was much more attached to his mother and didn't take
too well to the move. He was just under 8 years old and England was a 3 week boat trip away from
HK. There were were long periods when Nigel didn't see his parents. Holidays were spent with his
Aunt Vigny near Newcastle, Aunt Maude (actually his father's cousin) in Oxshott and occasionally
with masters.
In 1915 he went to Malvern College whilst Noel was separated and went to Repton. Nigel was at
Malvern throughout WW1 and wrote his reminiscences of life at the school throughout the war
years when 457 old boys, about the size of the school, lost their lives. He was a school prefect and
matriculated in January 1920. He entered the City and Guilds College of London University on 5th
Oct 1920 graduating with a BSc (Eng) on 24 October 1923.
After graduating, Nigel continued to live at home for 13 years working in London for an
engineering company called Sturtevants and enjoying the local social life especially with his sister
in tow. About 1919 my mother's family had relocated from Shropshire to Weybridge so a crossing
of their paths was inevitable at some point. My father did not have a way with girls and, although
there are plenty of photographs of hopefuls, usually with eager parents looking on, there seemed to
be no permanent girlfriend, apart from perhaps Joan Courtney. There were plenty of holidays on
cruise liners and the Norfolk broads, usually with the same gang and often including some of the
Potter family. By the early 1930s most of his friends were marrying.
He finally married my mother in June 1936. Mary Potter came from Shropshire originally but the
family had moved to Weybridge in 1919 rather suddenly and for unknown reasons. Her father was
Horace Potter and his family were from Wandsworth where they were quite successful wine
merchants. Horace Potter's father had invested in the Shropshire Brewery in Wellington with a Mr
Cockburn (of port fame). Horace was one of 10 children and was sent to Wellington to keep an eye
on the brewery where he had met and married Florence Slaney. The Slaneys were a
Shropshire/Midlands family well established in Wellington, also wine merchants. They had 4
children, Mary being the second. I would say that the Potters/Slaneys were a comfortably off
provincial middle class family and the move to Weybridge must have been something of an
upheaval and quite a different type of life. It is not known why they chose Weybridge, although
Mary and her sister had been sent to school in Wimbledon.
The war years, when I and my brothers were all born, must have had some effect on my father as,
according to my mother, he underwent some kind of personality change. Before then, according to
my mother, he had been a very pleasant and polite young man. In the late 40s he seemed to suffer
from a good deal of stress which eventually led to a breakdown in early 1950, not helped by the
death of his mother in the same year. He became more difficult to live with. Sometime in the
1950s he parted company with Sturtevants as he could not get on with his boss, although my guess
is that it was the other way round. From then on, he worked on his own from home as an agent.
Despite repeated bouts of stress related illness with visits to the Holloway Sanatorium, he was one
of the longer lived Stedmans of recent generations, dying at the age of 80. I don't find it easy to
summarise his life but I always had the impression that he was frustrated in some way. He had
quite a bit of creative engineering talent but no real outlet for it. He had an interest in photography
but never really pursued it with purpose. He liked gardening and music. In his pre-marriage days
life must have been fairly easy as the Stedmans were not poorly (FOS's Will in today's money was
£5.5 million) so there was no great driving force to spur him on. His social skills were not good
and he substituted for them by telling funny stories which, although he had an impressive supply,
were often repeated. His memory of past events was very good although he would often embellish
the stories to get a better effect on his audience. When it came to family history, this has caused a
certain amount of confusion. He seemed to be very pleased that I had gone into engineering and
gained (eventually) a degree.
Section 5 The DNA Study
The modern science of DNA has been applied to genealogy but it is still in its infancy as a subject.
It can tell us something of our past but currently far less than is popularly supposed by the Press.
There are several types of testing that can be done and I have participated in two:
1. Y-DNA. This traces the paternal line and can link very distant male cousins together.
2. Autosomal DNA. This tests for the tribal or ethnic origins of the last 5 generations both
male and female.
1. Y-DNA testing.
The Y chromosome contains some 59 million base pairs (gc or at) and is only passed from father to
son. At various points along the chromosome the base pairs are repeated, known as STRs (short
tandem repeats). These repeats are to an extent inherited and can provide a good marker going back
thousands of years in a line of inheritance. The number of repeats can vary from one generation to
the next and these are termed mutations. Some sites mutate faster than others and sometimes the
mutation can be linked to lifestyle. Testing 67 of these sites can give a pointer to the degree of
familial proximity (or genetic distance) which is the degree to which the number of repeats is the
same. More particularly it can give an indicator of zero relationship. Testing male cousins where
there is a known paper trail from, say, Parish records can allow a family group to be defined. There
is a significant probability factor in the accuracy of the results but it is accepted that if there is 61/67
match (ie all but 6) of two males with the same (phonetic) surname then they are related. A 57/67
match is deemed to be unrelated within the last 15 generations.
My DNA has been placed in the Sussex Stedmans which currently consist of 8 members some of
whom I know and some of whom we have not yet made a paper connection. Only 3 have had the
full 67 test so there is some way to go in the study.
2. Autosomal DNA.
Some sites do not mutate and these are used to define haplogroups which can trace tribal origins,
not cultural origins. The dispersal of tribal groups across Asia and Europe has meant that
populations are genetically very mixed. My haplogroup will be the same as other Stedmans and we
belong to a large haplogroup R1b-U106 found across western Europe. This group can be traced to
southern Germany around 2600BC but is widespread around Germany, France, Scandinavia and
Great Britain. The Duke of Galearbus story mentions that he might have been an Arab who
converted to Christianity. What is absolutely clear is that there is no Arab blood on our male side
Early Stedmans recorded in contemporary documents
Date & Place
1235 Carlton-le-
Richard Stedman witnessed a deed at Carlton-le-Moorland in 1235 be-
tween John Berner and Robert of Rothwell the rector of Carlton le Moor-
1252 Ashbourne March 31 — April 28. Nottingham. In one month of Easter, 36 Henry III.
Between Henry de Mapeltone, Plaintiff, and Roger le Stedeman of Esse-
burne and Alice his wife, Deforciants. Grant, on a plea of warranty of
charter, by Deforciants, in consideration of 2 silver marks, to Plaintiff, in
fee, of a moiety of a toft, and of an oxgang of land in Knivetone ; also of
I2d. rent to be received yearly from the Abbot of Dale for all the freehold
held by him of Plaintiffs in the same vill ; at the yearly rent of id. at the
feast of S. James the Apostle ; and performing to the chief lords of the fee
for Plaintiffs and the heirs of Plaintiff Alice all other services pertaining to
the aforesaid land.
1252 Corfton Richard Long of Corfton killed John le Stedeman in Corfton and promptly
fled and is of ill repute. So let him be exacted and outlawed. His chattels:
11 pence, for which [etc.] Lawton and Little Sutton did not make persuit
and are in mercy. He had land from the year, [day] and wast is worth 3
shillings, 6 pence, for which Richard de Furches is answerable.
1268 Bampton Henry de la Mare was covicted of robbery and plundering and imprisoned
at Bampton from which he escaped. The keepers of the prison, discover-
ing this, pursued him with hue and cry, which others joined. Gilbert le
Stedeman pursued Henry with an axe and struck off his head with the
same as he fled.
1270 Hampstead
March 8 1270 Pardon, at the instance of Guy de Leziniaco to Nicholas
cyfrewast, Emery son of randolf de Bretewell, Roger le Stedman, and
Roger Page for robbery and felony lately committed against Emery de
Vernoyll at La hawe in the parish of Hamsted Sifrewast.
1271 Feckenham Mandstum est eidem Rogero quod in foresta de Feckenham faciat
habere Waltero le Stedman quatuor quereus de dono regis. Teste rege
apud Westmonasterium vij. die Januarii.
1274 Hulcote Cecily, wife of Hugh of Hocot, came into the full county court (Bedford-
shire) and appealed Godfrey le Stedeman who came to the door of Hugh
Rachel's house in the vill of Chapel and with a pickaxe of iron and steel
assaulted Robert Field, her brother, wickedly, feloniusly, and against the
King's peace, and struck him near the parting of the hair, so that his brain
flowed forth, and he died at once. She also appealed William Baker of
Newport, for he held Robert by the left arm while Godfrey slew him.
1276 Newenham (1276) John Stedeman come before the king, on Friday after the octaves
of the Ascension, and sought to replevy to Eustace Clement of Waling-
ford his land in Newenham, which was taken into the king's hands for his
default in the king's court against Dionisia, late the wife of John Masse.
1276 Lillingstone
appointment of Roger Loneday and John de Mctingham to take the as-
sise of novel disseisin arraigned by John de Chelmeresford against Henry
le Stedeman and Margery late wife of I'eter Dauesy, touching a tenement
1277 Kegworth 1277- Appointment of Radulph de Hengham and William de Northburgh
to take assise of novel desseisin arraigned by William le Stedeman and
Alice his wife against Ingelard de Cursun ond others, touching a tene-
ment in Kegworth.1278 - Appointment of Roger Loveday and John de
Metingham to take assise of noval disseisin arrainged by William le
Stedeman and Alice his wife against Ingelard de Cursun ond others,
touching a tenement in Kegworth.
1278 Forest of
(1278) To Roger de Cliff[ord], justice of the Forest this side Trent. Order
not to molest or aggrieve Walter de Helyun and John le Stedeman, the
king's groom, for the taking of a buck by John with Walter's greyhounds in
the forest of Den without the king's licence, as the king has pardoned
them. The like to the justices next in eyre for common pleas in co.
1279 Thakeham Martin the rector of Thakeham, Joseph le Stedman, John Boby de Bolyn-
gshent, Robert Percy, John Coleman, John le Segenteyn, Thomas
Cotham, William de Bollingshurst, Symon the son of Phillip atte Pryce,
Alan son of Filz le Rey and Robert, the son of Joseph de Studham were
accused of involvment in the killing of Ralph le Segenteyn, during a fight
at Thakeham, by his wife Lucy.
1279 Coquet The Assizes Roll of Northumberland appears to refer to a Roger Stede-
man who is a fugitive in Scotland
1281 Stapenhill Thomas le Stedeman, former groom of William la Suche, killed Simon
Porter of Swinesby with a sword in the vill of Stapenhill. He fled at once
and is suspected, so he is to be exacted and outlawed. He has no chat-
tels. Henry Porter the first finder has not come, nor is he suspected. His
sureties, Geoffrey Porter of Pipewell and Robert son of Amice of the
same, do not have him now, so they are in mercy. The vills of Ethcote,
Gresele with Wineshill, Stanton and Drakelow did not pursue him so are
in mercy
1281 Kent Commission of oyer and terminer to Stephen de Penecestre, William de
Orlaveston, Wiliam de Detlinge, and Henry Perot touching an appeal
which Mutilda, late the wife of John le Bonde, brings in the couny of Kent
against Adam le Bavent, John le Botiller, Ralph le Stedman, William le
Someter, John le Pestur and Robert le Keu for the death of her Husband
1283 Widmerpool William son of Robert de la Valeye [de Valle] to Nicholas son of Nicholas
of Widmerpol. Grant of two acres of arable land in the fields of Widmerpol
(one acre of which lies between the land of the said Nicholas and the land
which Marjory, mother of the said William, formerly held in dower). Wit-
nesses: William of Schefeud in Wishowe, William . . . , Gervase son of
Henry of Keworthe, John Lake of the same, Gervase son of Gervase of
the same, William of Houton in Boneie, Robert Pedmor of the same, John
Gilion of Widmerpol, John son of Robert of the same, William son of
Thomas of the same, William le Stedeman of the same, and others. Dat-
ed at Widmerpol on St. Matthew's day, n Edw. I. [1283].
1283 Evesham Indenture witnessing that William Beauchamp, by John, rector of the
church of Crombe, his deputy, William de Weryngton, and John de
Knyghton, examiners of wool for co. Gloucester, have delivered to
Nicholas Burdoun and his fellows, takers of wool for the same county,
certain specified quantities of wool from the following persons, viz. John
de Osecote, of Bannebury, Nicholas Baldewith, of Tettebury, John Stede-
man, of Evesham, John Snow, of Tettebury, Thomas le Cotiller, of Circes-
tre, Thomas Pennard, William Top, of Froucestre, Richard Plot, of Little
Harsfeld, and Thomas Ubleye: Glouc.
1286 Newton AbbotDoc held at Plymoth RO Grant 1 Gomlda, daughter of Martin Scroggul 2
Thomas Stedeman House at Neweton Abbattis
1289 Chatton Indenture of the assignment of dower to Isabel, late the wife of John de
Vescy, made by Thomas de Normanvill, the escheator beyond Trent,
from the lands that belonged to John in co. Northumberland ; to wit in the
manor of Chatton 80l. 8s. 6 1/2d. ; and there are assigned to her in the
same manor l0l.3s. 4d., whereof William son of Peter le Taburer was en-
feoffed by the said John of 5 marks, Walter de Briddeshale of 68s. 4d.,
Henry le Ferrur of 40s., Benedict le Conestable of 30s., Reginald le
Stedeman of 1 mark, to be received in the mill of Chatton from year to
year, for which William de Vescy, brother and heir of John, shall satisfy
William son of Peter le Taburer and the others elsewhere as may be
agreed between them.
1290 Seagrave Matilda, widow of Roger le Stedeman of Seagrave gives to her son Henry
for his service one parcel with buildings in vill of Seagrave between the
parcel of the rector of Seagrave church and the kings road, being 27 feet
in length and 24 feet in width. Terms: To be held as capital demesne fee
by Henry and his heirs and assigns freely, quietly, well and in peace and
inheritance making such service to the chief lord as pertains to the parcel;
Matilda warrants them against all men in perpetuity and affixes her seal in
1295 Fotheringhay Huntingdonsshire FinesBetween Master Stephanus de Alyngton' -- and
Hugo filius Edmundi le Stedeman of Foderingeye and Matillis, his wife --
of a messuage and twelve acres of land in Alyngot'.
1296 Thorpe Man-
Land deal between John de Coquina called 'Stedeman' & Adam son of
William Miller ('molendinar') of Thenford. Coquina is probably some sort
of reference to cooking, food kitchens etc. In 1243, temp Henry III., it was
in the hands of Henry de Pinkeney
1297 Norton-Juxta-
Lease, for lives, from Peter of Gresley to Robert of Seale and Roger son
of Roger Gilbert of Appleby, of 2 acres of land in Norton Heath lying at le
Brounhil between the lands of Alan son of Thomas and of Roger Gilbert
of Appleby, which Roger le Stedeman formerly held from the said Pe-
ter.Annual rent from Robert and Roger to Peter, of 16 pence of silver at 2
times of the year - at the feast of the Blessed Mary in March 8d, and at
the feast of St. Michael the Archangel 8d[25 Mar, 29 Sept] for all secular
services, exactions and customs except foreign service of the Lord King.
Witnesses: John of Norton; Thomas son of Richard; William of Croxall;
Roger le Freman; William le Harpur [torn]; many othersDocument held by
Derbyshire Record Office
1297 MaddenstownGilbert Stedeman was riding from Balymadan towards Toly, he met Gre-
gory Martin and three men. Gilbert demanded money from them, and
swore he would take a pledge unless they gave him money. Gregory re-
fused and a struggle arose, and Gregory defending himself, struck Gilbert
in the head with a hatchet, whereof he died. The jurors attested the same.
Gregory made fine for half a mark, because he is poor, by pledge of Will,
Alisaundre, Nich. le Armurer, and Will. Martyn.
1297 Kildare From the Eyre of John Wogan, Chief Justiciar, at Kidare. Will. de Blaby,
charged with robberies and the death of Hugh le Stedeman, made fine by
40s, by pledge of John de Punchardon, Gerald son of Maurice, John de
la Hide, and Thomas de Boys, beacuse it was in time of disturbance.
1297 Yorkshire Like writ is directed to assistant York. The names of the knights elected
by the communities of the county of York. He that have the power to con-
stitute the penalty of the foresaid, to do them for the communities of
which this writ calls for it, that is to say, Lord Robert de Percy, the Lord
Robert de Balliol, who indeed shall undertake by Robert of Thornton,
William Stedeman, William, eldest son of William of Sutton, & Richard, el-
dest son of William of the same .
1302 Hurley Power Of attorney from Peter le Stedeman and Robert le Stedeman to
Dom. Jordan de Wythersfeud, to receive 100 sh. from the Prior and con-
vent of Hurley for a fine made with them for trespass committed by the
Prior's men against them.
1302 Fountains
August 17th 1302 Simple protection, until Christmas, for the abbot of
Fountains, going to her general Cistercian chapter. By K. Letter for him,
nominating John de Maungneby and Robert Le Stedman his attorneys as
above. By K.R. de Bardelby recieived the attorneys Note: see '1310
1302 Winchcombe the like to the same touching the persons who assauled Thomas Neel,
William Duket, William le Provost, John Barun, John le Stedman, John de
Wydeneye, and William at Wynchecombe, co. Gloucester, and despoiled
them of goods. By K. for the men of John de Sulleye, on the information
of Walter de Bello Campo.
1304 St. Andrews Letters of Attorney for William son of Richard Burdet staying in Scotland
with the king, under names of John de Haukestan and Richard le Stede-
man until Michaelmas.
1305 Weedon Lois Simon le Stedeman allowed to keep land acquired of Henry de Pynkeny
after inquest in 1305, a messuage and 1 1/2 acres
1306 Warkworth The like to William de Bereford, Nicholas de warrewik, and walter de
Aillesbury, on compliant by Richard de Middelton,that whereas he caused
the beasts of John de Lyuns to be seized by Richard Tilbay, John de Wal-
ton, Richard Burgeys, William le Fevre, Ralph Howes, John Howes,
William son of Ralph and Simon son of Margery, his servants, at wake-
worth, co. Northamton, the said John, Nicholas and richard his brothers,
Ralph le Stedeman, Thomas de Prewes, Simon Abbot, Walter le Machun,
William Golafre the elder and younger, Peter de Montibus, Peter de
Burle, Adam Osbern, Wiliam Ballard,Henry West, Walter Baunchard,
Richard de Tademarton, Henry Abbot of Ocle, John son Walter Peres and
William his brother, William le Childerle, Richard son of Nicholas Rolf,
William son of Richard le Muner, Richard son of Agnes de Lyuns, Adam
le Kyng, Richard Pavy, Alan Felicen, John Pawadyn, John son of Walter
Brende, and Richard his brother , Robert Hethewy, Thomas Pavy, Giles
le Hirde, Nicholas son of Nicholas le Skynner, Walter son of Nicholas
Gerard, Richard son of John de Lodewell, William de Byfeld, William Het-
hewy, William Pacy, Walter son of Richard Blaunchard, Nicholas son of
Richard Golafre, Geoffrey Bek, William le Longe, Adam Son of John
Heynes, John Heynes, Thomas son of Nicholas le Muner, Nicholas son of
Nicholas le muner, Thomas de Coteford, Richard Robert, Richard son of
Nicholas de Lyuns, Richard Golafre, Adam son of Nicholas de Smereker-
vere, Walter son of Henry West, Adam Chichely, Peter Gerard, John
Lamerd, William son of Peter Gerard, Walter Chichely, Agnes la Noreis,
Agnes Gilly, Matilda daughter of Nicholas le Carpenter, Emma daughter
of Walter Peres, and Juliana daughter of Nicholas le Carpenter, rescued
the same, and assaulted his said servants
1310 Thornton The like to H. Spigurnel and Thomas de Fissheburne, on complaint by
william de Parys that Thomas de Lodelowe, Ralph de Kirketon in Holland
with Alexander and John his brothers, John son of Andrew de Conynges-
by, Richard le Forester, Thomas de Lodelowe of Conyngesby, Adam le
Forester, Thomas de Lodelowe, Ralph le Forester, Thomas de Ludelowe,
Richard de la Grane of Thorton, Geoffrey 'theoldelavedy squyer'
Marmyun, Robert le Stedeman and Robert Hunte, with others assaulted
him at Thornton by Horncaster, co. Lincoln, maimed him and robbed him
of his goods. Note: see '1302 Fountains Abbey'
1310 Swynnerton Parden to John de Swynnerton, John de Whethales, Roger de Tytene-
soure, Ralph Proudfot, John de Bentele, Alexander de Adele, John le
Clerk of Swynnerton, Robert Bole, Robert le Stedeman of Swynnerton,
Richard Baseson, Robert Trypon, Robert Son of Margery, and 'Ithel
Jonesknave of Swynnerton,' for the rape of Joan, late the wife of Peter de
1316 Bradley Comission of oyer and terminer to William de Ormesby and John de
Fresingfeld, on complaint by John Boteturt that Thomas de Burgh, Robert
de Hacford, John Russel, John de Braundissh, adam de Bayuse, Robert
le Stedeman, Walter le Hunte and Thomas le Stedeman, with others,
broke his park at Bradele, co. Suffolk, by night, hunted therein, and car-
ried away deer.
1318 Thornton
Petition to the King by the Abbot and convent of Thornton-on-Humber, to
be excused from maintaining Henry le Stedeman, on account of their ex-
penses in maintaining the Abbot of Jedworth and otherwise
1318 Hazelwood The like to John de Moubray, John de Donecaster and Alexander de
Cave on complaint by John de Rither, King's yeoman, that Thomas
Ughtreth, Robert de Folifat, John Waleys, Robert de Couton, Hugh de
Lewyngthorpe, Adam le Mohoude, Henry de Gyseleye, Ralph de Beston,
John Raulynesman, Robert de Burley, Robert le Ken, Richard le Stede-
man, Ralph le Caumberlyn, adam le Feronr, Adam le Palefrayour, William
'Jonesman of Bradebourn,' Robert de Bethmesley, clerk, Alan Serjaunt of
Bechawe, Henry son of Ralph le Ken of Bykerton, John de Munketon,
william de Tokwyth, John fiz Jurdan, Thomas de Stotton, John Pavely,
Robert le Carpenter of Stotten, Robert thamasman Warde de Heley,
Gilbert le Ussher, Henry de Byngeley, Thomas de London of Popelton,
John de Londen, John le Petit, and Elias his brother, Geoffrey de Gyseley
and Richard de Popelton, with others, entered his manor at Heselwode,
co. York, broke the gates and houses thereof, and his chests, burned the
timber thereof, held the manor from 10 October 11 edward II, until the As-
cension following, prevented him and his men from entering the manor
and cultivated his land, levied rents from his tenants, felled his trees, took
20l. of hos, drove away 4 horses, 3 cows, and 9 swine, of the price of
17l., and destryed his hay.
1319 Granby
Commission of oyer and terminer to Richard de Wylughby, Hugh de Prestwold,
and John de Hoton on complaint by John de Engayne that Wiliam Seftyng, John
de Normanton, Wiliam son of Adam de Medburn and Robert his brotherm
edmund son of Richard, Robert Walde, Robert whirker and thomas his brother,
Richard le shepdriver, John de Kybbeworth, Nicholas Harme of Kybbeworth,
William Taillour of Holt, Richard Stedeman of Gonteby, John le Vans and
Wiliam his brother, John de la rokele and Thomas Har[iet] with others, entered
his fair at Halonghton co. Leicester, and prevented Wiliam Pecchar (or Pechar),
the bailiff whom he had appointed to collect his tolls, from doing so, and carried
away his goods.
1320 Fulford The like to John de Donecaster, Richard de Bernyngham and Robert de
Hedon touching an appeal in the county of York by Agnes, late the wife of
John de Dyghton of Bonewyk, against Thomas son of WilliamSkynnere of
Fulford, Richard son of Nicholas le Brette of Fulford and Thomas son of
John le Stedman of Fulford for the death of her husnand By fine of 20s.
and by p.s.
1320 Shrewsbury Pardon to Thomas le Stedemon, a prisoner in the gaol of Shrewsbury, for
the death of John Staner, as it appears by the tecord of John de Bromfeld
and William de Weston, justices of gaol delivery for the town of Shrews-
bury, that he kiled him in self-defence
1321 Scottish Bor-
A list of names of people who have come [from Scotland] with Alexander
de Moubray, and for whom he requests the King's charter of peace, of his
grace, without paying the Chancellor's fee, as they do not come well-sup-
plied out of their own country. William Comyn; William Hareshefd; William
de Carlaverok (Caerlaverock); Maclom (Malcolm) de Kenmonth; Robert
de Foynhope; Thomas de Thormborne; Patrick de Thormborne; John le
Ferour; Peter de Boulton; John Fitz Philip; Adam Rossel (Russel); Hugh
de Crauforde (Crawford); John de la Chaumbre, foot-soldier (serjant); Si-
mon Hirdeman, foot-soldier (serjant); Christy Grenehaye, foot-soldier
(serjant); William Barn, foot-soldier (serjant); John de Thormborn (Thorm-
borne), foot-soldier (serjant); Adam de Elom, foot-soldier (serjant); Simon
le Stedeman, foot-soldier (serjant); Randi (Randolph) Gardener, foot-sol-
dier (serjant); Thomas le Sutherne (Southern), foot-soldier (serjant); John
Donnyng, foot-soldier (serjant); Simon de le Hope, foot-soldier (serjant);
Alan de le Heyes, foot-soldier (serjant); Huchoun (Hugh) de le Grenehefd,
foot-soldier (serjant); Thomas le Palfreiour, foot-soldier (serjant); William
de le Hill, foot-soldier (serjant)
1322 Pickering Expences of a groom called Simon le Stedeman and a grey charger of
the King, lamed by being pricked in shoeing escaping from the capture of
Byland Abbey by the Scots and coming to Pickering to be cured, during
residence there of 16 days untill the charger was sound - 10 shillings
1322 Deddington The like to the same justices, on complaint by the said William that John
de Wynton, William de Skelton, Robert Breton of Dadyngton, John Stede-
man, Robert le Cartere, John Wadde, John la Mare, Agnes de Stowe,
Richard 'Inthelane',' William 'Anneysmanstowe,' Hugh King, Henry
Luffyng, John Rotour, Adam Hayot, John Blake, John le Fychere, Richard
Tibbesome, Richard Humber le Suour, John Bretoun, the younger, John
Bretoun, the alder, Adam Aungevyn, William son of Richard, Michael de
Wotton, Cicely de Fakenham, Isolda de Oxenford, Alice le Ledyettere,
Alexander le Barbour, John Lenglish, Richard Ruglish, William Neuman,
william Gylot, John Honyman, Emma Scorth, William Mayo, Alice Donne,
John de Oxon,John Gerveys, Agnes de Pythenton, Ralph de Bereford,
Thomas Snel, John le Mouner, Agnes de Fakenham, John le Lokiere,
John Neugh, Margery Gygour, Margery North, William Gygour, John
Fullere, Simon Cachefrensh, william coumbe, Henry Partrich of
Wodestoke, Hugh le Mouner, Vincent de Storteford of London 'wol-
monere,' Adam hocard of Dadynton, William Mazoun, John de London,
'taillour,' Hugh Andreu, William Dobbe, Thomas le Glasiere, Thomas Cok,
William le Suour of Dadynton, Richard Bifeld, william le Swon, Nicholas
Carlot, Simon le Sclat[ter]e, Glbert Kempe, Gilbert de Berewyck, William
Symple, Hugh de tankevill, Henry Tankevill, Richard de Perle of Drayton,
John le Heyward of Sutton by Abyndon, Thomas Musard of Brackele,
Hugh Puddyng of Wodestock, Thomas Reysun, Philip Bacun, Juliana
Bretoun, William Walrond, Richard le Smyth, Agnes Aleblast[er] of Kemp-
ton, Ralph le Peyntour, William Duryval, Robert Honyman, Emma de Bu-
denhull, Robert le Cartere, Julian Cope, Agnes of Fakenham, John de
Upton, Alice Swote, John le Taillour of Aynho, and William Godhous with
others broke his houses at Dadynton and Caveresham, co. Oxford, and
carried away his goods. By K. on the information of R. de Ayremynne
1322 Lichfield
1326 Coleby Account of Thomas Stedeman, serjeant from Michaelmas 1326 to the
same feast
1327 Cold Newton Simone Stedman. Leicestershire Lay Subsidy 1327
1329 Ross-on-Wye the like to the same on complaint by the bishop that Reginald son of Hen-
ry le Grey, Henry Henriprest le Grey, John le Grey, John Danvers, Wiliam
de Wyncheston, Madock le Hayward, John le Hayward, Thomas le
Botiller, Thomas le Fauconer, Ambrose son of William le Viker, John
Beynner, John le Constableman, Richard le Stedeman, William le Hunt,
Vigrus son of Vigrus, John le Keu, David le Hussher, Adam le Baker,
John Feynde, Richard son of John le Tayler, John son of John la More,
John Selyman, Yevan ap Yevan, William Griff', adam le Milward, Thomas
le Smyth of Asshe, Roger Maykyn, Geoffrey son of Thamas le Taillour,
Adam le Bedles, chaplin, John Tulle, william Cadon, adam Cadon,
Richard le Taillour of Wilton, Richard le Page, William Mayknes, Matthew
de Gosebrok, Roger Poche, adam Poche and others broke his manor of
Ros co. Hereford, carries away his goods and assaulted his servents.
1334 Preston Robert Rose of Preston, John Blok, Geoffrey le Clerk, Somon Blok, John
Alcons, Geoffrey son of Felicis, John son of Simon Kyde, Henry son of
Gilbert, William Hermyte and Wichardus his brother, Thomas Baret,
Richard le Stedman and John Spark of Presone, imprisoned at Rokyng-
ham for trespass of vert and venison in the forest of Sauce, which they
are charged, have the king's writ to Robert de Ufford, keeper of the Forest
beyond Trent, or to him who supplies his place in the said forest, to bail
them until the coming of justices nect eyre for pleas od the Forest in co.
Northampton.Note: Sauce forrest is now known as Salcey Forest
1335 Corfton Grant from William Stedman of Corfton to Hugh de Preston of a mes-
suage in the township of Corfton with all the appurts, which messuage is
situated between a mote/messuage of John de Staneway and a mes-
suage of Richard Lenfaint of Dudelbury, and four acres of land with one
acre and a half in the field of Corfton, The fourt of an acre in Shapponale
to wit one acre lies between the land of Roger de Longnorth and land
which Robert Lovet holds, another of the five acres lies between the
lands of Richard Henryys and the land which Henry Bunart holds, the
third of the five acres lies in the Bancke between the lands of William
Lenfaint and Adam Ardern and the land of Philip Henrys and Richard
Perkys and extending upon the land of William Lenfaint, one of 5
sillions(?) lies beyond Tisden between the lands of John de Stanway and
John Mandit, two of five sillions lies upon Doggsiche Furlong, to cost
on(e) sillion lies between the land of Walter de Sunby and the land of
Walter Henrys another of the five sillions lies between the land of Walter
Sunby and the land of Wallter Brice. Witnesses: William Lenfaint de
Dudelbury, William Lenfaint and Roger de Longnorth, Roger Lemmon,
John Lenfaint and others
1336 Fulford Enrolment of grant by William son of Philip Gillyng to Williamde Huthum,
citizen and merchant of York, of all his lands in waterfullford and of 8
acres of land in Overfulford which came to him by inheritance after the
death of Philip, his father. Witnesses: Henry de Belton, then mayor of
York; John de Woume, Richard de Bridgenhale, Nicholas de Scorby,
Stephen de Setryngton, Robert de Molesby, Nicholas le Chandler, John
Randman, citizens of York; Thomas Stedeman of Overfulford, Thomas de
Marton of Waterfulford, Thomas son of Walter del Bigg of the same,
Gilbert Rose of the same, Thomas Deyvile of York, clerk.
1337 Baildon By William son of Henry de Morwyle of Bayldon, clerk, to John son of
John le Vavassour of a messuage, arable land and a meadow with a
wood called Dawhirst at Bayldon which he holds on lease from Anice,
relict of Henry Stedeman, for her life; John to pay Anice 4s. p.a.Witness-
es: Walter de Haukesword, Robert de Burlay, Michael de Roudon, John
de Carleton the elder, Adam son of Henry de Bayldon, William his broth-
er, Hugh de Horfford.
1341 Gloucester-
Promise to John Stedman to pay to him at Midsummer 48s. due for 8
pounds of his wool taken by Nicholas Burdon and his fellows, lately ap-
pointed to take for the king a moiety of the wool in the county of Glouces-
1341 Maldon The Like to William de Laneford, William Talmache and William Talmache
and William Crocheman, in the county of Essex, touching the persons
who assaulted William Lok, William Abraham and John Chopyn, the
king's bailiffs errant in that county, Thomas Waftard and Geoffrey Colevill,
receivers of his moneys there, and Thomas Stedman, William Sparthay
and Stephen 'Raynaldesman Filet' at maldon
1346 Ramsey The like on complaint by the same that John son of walter, John Whithev-
el, John son of Margaret, Alan son of Margaret, Thomas Kelful, John Kel-
ful, the younger, Robert Wodereve, John Asely, John Curteys, 'reve,'
Roger Shepherde, Richard Hert, John Everard, 'reve,' John Kelful, Robert
Kelful, the elder, Simon Kelful, Robert Pevere, Adam Pevere, Walter Ev-
erard, Alexander Vigerous, William Bouk, Walter Warde, William Warde,
John Warde, William 'of the celer,' John Richer, John 'of the celer,' John
Pevere, Thomas Pevere, Robert Knight, John his son, Walter Hert, Si-
monHert, Adam Goshay, John Hert, Walter Wrightte, John Richer, John
Ive, Robert Wrightte, John Eeme, John Gernoun, the younger, William
Raven, Robert Raven, Alexander Raven, Adam Stedeman, William
Stedeman, William Wylly, Nicholas Wylly, Adam Bole, Geoffrey Hunte,
Henry Hunt, Robert Bonde John Barbour, William Wyot, Robert Wyot,
John Roudoune, John Ferour, Richard Plumer, Richard Chapman, John
Chapman, Hugh Chapman, Thomas Chapman, William de Saberton ,
Ralph Farsheved, Alexander Taillour, John Taillour, William Taillour,
Hugh Spurlee, John de Castra, Robert de Castre, Hugh atte Castel,
Stephen son of Juliana, John atte Gate, William de Giddyng, John Hard-
heved, Walter Waryn, Thomas Waryn, Thomas Bryngest, Walter
Coupere, John Gernoun, the elder, Henry Huchoun, William Haiward,
John Pelle, John his son, and others depastured his grass at Rameseye
with cattle, fished his stews there, carried away his fish and others goods
and assaulted his men and servants, whereby he lost their service for a
great time.By fine of 20s. Huntingdon
1346 Liverpool For Fines for entry, for perquisites of Court, for perquisites of Port Motes,
for Customs of Anchorage, for wreck of the sea, waifs, strays, Escheats,
for fishery of the Mersee Of which 4s is allowed to Benedict le Stedman
for the yearly rent of a certain tenement which the Lord Earl Henry, the fa-
ther of the now Lord remitted for the term of his life in consideration of his
services.From the 'inquistitio post mortem' after the death of Henry, third
Earl of Lancaster. Benedict le Stedman was a constable of Liverpool.
1346 Yeaveley Power of attorney given by Simon de Meynil to William del Halle his baillif
and Richard Le Stedeman, to receive seisine of lands from William de
Saperton and John Umfray de Childecote
1347 Chesterfield Elena widow of John son of Rich. de Neubold. to Rob. son of Wm. de
Hulme of Chastrefeld right to dower in 14s. p.a. rent from a tenement in
the new market of Chastrefeld.Witn: Hen. de Maunesfeld, Jarin Stede-
man, Roger de Riggeway etc. Given at C., Fri., St. Edmund Bishop, 21
Edw. III.
1335 Preston
1341 Horsham wo crofts of land in Horsham called Le Rudene abutting S. on land of
Roger Lyntot, N. on land belonging to the chapel of the Holy Trinity at
Horsham, N.W. on King's highway. Witnesses: William of Forewelde,
Benedict of Stamerham, Godfrey of Stamerham, Roger Lyntot, John
Stedeman, Walter Stedeman. Given at Horsham. Endorsed 'Marlepost'.
1357 Yardley Hast-
Inspeximus and confirmation of letters patent of Laurence de Hastynges,
late earl of Pembroke, and lord of Weyseford and Bergeveny, dated at his
manor of Jerdeleye, 16 February, 19 Edward III, granting for life to his
groom Simon le Stedeman, for a mayhem incurred by him in his service,
a bushel of wheat every week out of his said manor, with a robe of the liv-
ery of the grooms. See 1321 Scottish Border & 1322 Pickering
Barkestone 1358 John Stedman witnessed a lease of land at Barkestone by William
Bernake of Barkestone to Belvoir PriorySource : The manuscripts of his
grace the Duke of Rutland. K.G. preserved at Belvoir castle vol IV
1327,1332 Chich-
Willmo Stedy 1327,1332. Source : Sussex Subsidy 1296,1327,1332
1327 Donnington Simone de Stedeham 1327. Source : Sussex Subsidy 1296,1327,1332
1332 Stedham Simone de Stedeham 1332. Source : Sussex Subsidy 1296,1327,1332
1327 Horsham Willo Stedeman 1327. Source : Sussex Subsidy 1296,1327,1332
1327,1332 West
Rogo Stede,Steede 1327,1332. Source : Sussex Subsidy
1327,1332 Sulling-
Walto Stedeman,Steidman 1327,1332. Source : Sussex Subsidy
1296 Thakeham Rico Stedeman 1296. Source : Sussex Subsidy 1296,1327,1332
1301 Nunnington Willelmo Stedeman. Yorkshire Lay Subsidy: 30 Ed. I (1301)
1301 Upsall Johanne Stedeman. Yorkshire Lay Subsidy: 30 Ed. I (1301)
1301 Ayton Rosa Stedeman. Yorkshire Lay Subsidy: 30 Ed. I (1301)
1301 Barton Sea-
William Stedeman. Lay Subsidy Northamptonshire 1301
1301 Achurch Solomon Stedeman. Lay Subsidy Northamptonshire 1301
Appendix 3
Tracing the Stedman lineage from 1725 back to the early 16th century
The step-by-step picking out of names of parents and spouses from Parish records will always be subject to
great uncertainty. Extensive use has been made of the excellent Sussex Family History Group (SFHG)
database, not a public database, which has been compiled by members from all the existing Parish records
of births, marriages and deaths in Sussex. Parish records started between about 1540 to 1569. Almost
always the father's name is given and often the mother's name, although the mother's maiden name is never
This section is presented backwards in time as that is how the research was conducted. The starting point is
Nathaniel Stedman of Ardingly (1725 - 91) who is known to be our direct ancestor from the research work
done by myself which links into the (more colourful) work done by the Victorian Rochester Stedmans. He
was baptised on 16th May 1725 in St Peters, Ardingly.
The search back in time for the correct fathers and the mothers via the correct marriage is then based on:
- the right names but with possible spelling variations (ie Steedman, Steadman,
Stidman and Stydman) which can change and then sometimes change back. The
spellings as written in the records are used here.
- the same or nearby localities since ordinary working families tended to stay in the
same area because of their trade and family connections.
- sensible dates (ie men marrying around 20 - 30 years of age, women a little earlier,
children's births occurring at a reasonable age of the parents).
- use of the christian names of the father and mother for their first born, and their parents'
or siblings' christian names for subsequent children since that was very much the norm.
- other records (tax, Wills, legal, court records etc) connecting the people to the area
and parents to children.
- gravestones and church yard records. Sadly gravestones made from even the most
robust materials do not last very long and, in any case, are sometimes moved. Church
yard records are sporadic.
Where the age is given at burial, this is a strong pointer to the correct selection but is not often given. The
death of an infant or child is often noted. The burial entries often give useful information such as wo (wife
of, implying the husband is still alive), wid (widow), ch (child), s of (son of, implying the father is still
3.1 William Stedman of Ardingly (1678 - 1760).
Nathaniel's father is recorded as William Stedman and mother is Sarah. From the Parish records William
'Steadman' (age 29) marries Sarah Watson (age 23) of Ardingly in Ardingly on 17 June 1707. All the 7
children of William and Sarah are born in Ardingly (under the name Stedman not Steadman) between the
years 1708 and 1728. There is only one William Stedman to be buried in St Peters, Ardingly between 1728
and 1770 and that is on 15 May 1760 aged 82 which would give his birth year as 1678 ±1 year. There are
only two William Stedmans to be born in Sussex between 1677 and 1679. One is born in Kirdford to
Thomas Stedman, but who dies in Aug 1680 (bur 3 Aug 1680, s of Thomas). The other is born in
Balcombe (bap 7 Apr 1678 s of John Stedman). William and Sarah use the following names for their sons:
Thomas, John, William, Nathaniel and George. Nathaniel is an Old Testament name which became
fashionable after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes when New Testament 'Catholic' names fell out of
favour. William has a brother Thomas, father John and grandfather William. It is concluded that William
baptised in Balcombe in 1678 is Nathaniel's father. Confusingly, there is another William Stedman of
Balcombe, a Yeoman farmer, who has a PCC Will but this Will shows he comes from Capel in Surrey
where he has property.
3.2 John Stedman of Balcombe (1636 - 1705).
William was the third child and second son of John. John’s first son, also John, was born in 1674, followed
by the first daughter Elizabeth. There was only one marriage of a John Stedman in Sussex in 1670 ±5
years and that was to a Mary Burstow in nearby Ardingly on 10 Oct 1671. There are two possible Mary
Burstows: one born in Horsham in 1641 and one in Worth in 1650. Although the one born in Horsham
would have been 30 at marriage, her parents names were also John and Elizabeth. The parents of the other
were Richard and Margarett. Horsham is closer to the Ardingly/Balcombe area than Worth so it is more
likely to be the first Mary Burstow, despite her age, although this is not conclusive.
There are two burials of a John Stedman in Balcombe, one in 1695 and one in 1705. However, there is a
burial record of a Mary Stedman in Balcombe in 1699, probably his wife, with no mention that she was a
widow. It is likely that our John Stedman was the second John being buried. Could the first John on be his
eldest son as there are no John Stedman marriages in Sussex until 1730?
There are three possible John Stedman/Steadmans born between 1635 and 1650 - one in Slinfold (1642) to
Thomas and Eleanor, one in Bignor (1645 near Chichester) to William and Joan and one in Cuckfield
(1636) to William and Anne. Although he would have been 35 when he married, it is probable that the
John born in Cuckfield is likely to be the one who married Mary Burstow.
3.3 William Stedman of Bolney (1606 - ?)
John is the only child of William Steadman and Anne baptised on 9th Oct 1636 in Holy Trinity, Cuckfield.
The only marriage of a William Stedman/Steadman is William Steadman to Ann Jenner in Cuckfield 14th
June 1636. There are three possible Ann Jenners, all born in Cuckfield. Ann Jeener (or Giner in BT) is
baptised in Cuckfield on 23 Nov 1606 father Henry, mother Dorothy. Another Anne Jenner is baptised on
15 Sep 1616 father Ambrose, mother Marie. A third Anne Jenner is baptised on 25 Apr 1624 father
Francis, unknown mother.
William and Anne have only one child in Cuckfield (John) and there is a record of a female burial (wife of
William) on the 14 Oct 1648. This is presumably Ann and would be written this way if William were
alive. There is no record of a William burial either in Cuckfield or Bolney.
It is of note that Thomsin Stedman (wid) is buried in Cuckfield on 4th May 1639. She is believed to be
William’s mother. There is a record of Tamsin Ellis marrying a John Stedman in Bolney on 26 Nov 1592.
They had 6 children all born in Bolney including William in 1606. No other William Stedman/Steadmans
were born in Sussex between 1600 and 1616. It is concluded that William was the son of John Stedman
and Thomasin/Tamsin Stedman (neé Ellis).
3.4 John Stedman of Bolney (1571 - ?)
Whilst there are a number of Ellis families in Sussex, there are no daughters born with an unusual name
such as Tamsin or Thomasin. There is an LDS record of a Thomezine Ellis a female born in Fritton,
Norfolk in 1567. She is the daughter of Richarde Ellis and it is noteworthy that John and Tamsin’s first
child is named Richard, not a very common Stedman family name. Further research may reveal a
connection between the Ellis family in Fritton and one of those in Sussex. Thomezine is a very unusual
christian name and would have caused quite a few spelling variations. Considering that the almost unique
name and dates match, it is quite probable that this is John’s wife.
There is only one John Stedman (or any variant of Stedman) born in Sussex between 1560 and 1572 and
that is John son of Thomas Stedman baptised in Bolney on 28 Jan 1571. Only one Thomas Stedman
marries in Sussex between 1562 and 1582 and that is Thomas Stedman and Magdelen Knighte in the
adjacent Parish of Wisborough Green, Sussex on 10 May 1572. Thomas Stedman and Magdalen Knyght
were born in Rudgwick in extended families. Other members of the Knyght or Knighte family lived in
Wisborough Green.
3.5 Tomas Stedman of Rudgwick (1541 - 1586)
There are two Thomas/Tomas Stedmans born in Rudgwick, one in 1541 the son of Wyllyam, and the other
was baptised on 13 Dec 1554 the second son of a John Stedman. The second one would be 18 or under at
the marriage date of 10 May 1572 to Magdelen Knyght who was born in 1552. It seems slightly more
probable that the older of the two Thomases is John Stedman’s father despite the fact that the younger
Thomas had both a brother and a father called John. It is likely that the two Thomases were cousins. The
younger Thomas had a sister, Clemens, whose Godfather was William Stedman.
3.6 Wyllyam (or William) Stedman of Rudgwick
There is some uncertainty about the various Wyllyams (or Williams) of Rudgwick. The parish records
only started about 1539 and they show two couples having children, a Wyllyam and Alys and a Wyllyam
and Jone but also record a Wyllyam as a father. Just recording the father was the norm so it is not possible
to say who was the mother of Tomas. The Wills of Wyllyam and Alys have been obtained and they
indicate only daughters (Alys and Elizabeth) but they are difficult to read. No other Wills have been found.
Appendix 4 FOS and Family Passenger Records (not complete)
Year Date Who (occupation) Notes
1893 15th March Osmund (doctor) London Hong Kong
1899 July Osmund (doctor), Lillian Canada Liverpool
1900 20th Sep Osmund Lillian (+Noel presumably) Liverpool Canada
plus chinese servant
1900 12th Nov Mr Stedman (Bell?) London Colombo
1905 26th Oct London Hong Kong
1909 Liverpool
1910 6th Jan Bell (doctor), Grace, Doris Stedman London Colombo
1910 30th Sept Lillian, Maude Stedman, Gwen London Hong Kong
1912 22nd Apr Maude Stedman Liverpool Colombo
1912 13th July Osmund Montreal (China) Liverpool
1913 6th May Grace, Doris, Joan Stedman Ceylon London
1913 24th Sept Lillian, Gwen Southampton Yokohama
1915 Osmund Quebec Liverpool
Last residence: China
1915 18th July Lillian, Gwen New York Liverpool
1916 10th June Lillian, Gwen Liverpool New York
1917 19th Nov Osmund (doctor) Montreal Liverpool
1919 24th Jan Lillian, Gwen Liverpool
1919 3rd May Doris (age 17) London Colombo
1924 14th Sept Noel (Insurance) Yokohama London
1925 17th Dec Osmund (doctor rtd.), Lillian, Gwen Barbados Southampton West Indies cruising
1926 Noel (Farmer) London Mombassa
1926 Southampton New York
1926 18th June Lillian, Gwen Southampton New York
1926 13th Sept Lillian, Gwen Boston Southampton
1927 3rd June Bell (tea planter) Colombo Southampton
1927 13th Sept Bell (tea planter) London Colombo
1930 Lillian, Gwen E London, Natal London
1935 13th Sept Lillian, Nigel (Eng) (Yokohama) London
Got on at Marseilles
1937 Lillian Southampton S Africa
Mrs Stedman, 2 children and
May Osmund (doctor), Lillian, Noel, Nigel,
Quebec (via San
Last residence:
Australia address:
Littlecote, Oxshott
One of six officers in
charge of Chinese
labour contingent
(1929 labourers)
St John, New
address: Littlecote,
June Lillian, Gwen cancelled trip address: Bramcote,
address: Bramcote,
address: 93 Kentin
Rd, Gosport,
Newcastle on Tyne
address: Bramcote,