Acquisitions on behalf of local repositories
The Friends of Devon's Archives undertakes to acquire manuscripts and related material for deposit in a local repository, where it may be freely accessed by the public. (Our acquisitions policy is available here.) Over the years we have contributed to, or purchased outright, a number of documents that are now in the public domain. Among these are the following:
- FoDA facilitated the deposit in Plymouth and West Devon Record Office of a manuscript list of air raids in Plymouth, Aug 1940-Apr 1941, collated by Rhoda Lane (nee Jarvis), giving dates and times; biographical details relating to Rhoda Ann Jarvis (later Lane) of Plymouth and details of her father Thomas Lane. (4111).
- Cullompton Fire Insurance Map, 1830s: Ground plan of the town and environs of Cullompton from a survey made July 1831, measured and mapped by R.P. Davey, apparently produced for insurance purposes and probably copied or added to after a fire (possibly the 'Great Fire' of 1839). Purchased in conjunction with the Devon Family History Society and deposited in Devon Heritage Centre (DHC ref ZAHS, acc D2016/130).
- Medieval deed relating to Ferers of Kingston family, 1384: Grant, John Ferers to Thomas Ferers, estates in Kingston, with handwritten and typed translations. Purchased in conjunction with the South West Heritage Trust and deposited in Devon Heritage Centre (DHC ref ZAIN, acc D2016/204).
- Deeds relating to Tunnel Estate, Exeter, 1893-1972: Conveyances and abstracts of title, relating to plots 8 and 9 of the Tunnel Estate, subsequently No 9 Mansfield Road. (DHC ref ZAIE, acc D2016/169).
- Deeds relating to Holbrook Estate, Ilsington, 1831-1914: Conveyances, mortgages, transfers of mortgage and other property documents. Those dated prior to 1864 refer to lands known as Olditch and Woodwalls in Ilsington. Documents from 1864 onwards refer to the Holbrook Estate. Purchased and deposited in Devon Heritage Centre (DHC ref ZAIF, acc D2016/170).
- FoDA assisted with the rescue and deposit at Devon Heritage Centre of a crate of deeds, conveyances, agreements, correspondence and financial papers relating to paper mills in Buckfastleigh, Stoke Canon and Silverton, Devon, and Watchett, Somerset (18th-20th centuries). Including a copy of the will of W.H. Reed, the owner.
- FoDA purchased a manuscript map of fields belonging to Chambers's Tenement in the parish of Culmstock, contained in a conveyance of the same, dated 1877. This has been deposited in the Devon Heritage Centre.
- Mr Paul Luscombe, a FoDA committee member, deposited a copy and a transcription of a grant at Sorley (near Churchstow) by King Edgard in 962, from the original in Essex Record Office.
- A collection twenty-one deeds, including wills, marriage settlements and land transfers, relating to Bycott Farm in Halberton, Devon. These all date from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Purchased by FoDA and deposited in Devon Heritage Centre.
- Diaries of Lewis Mills Burfitt of Ilfracombe while in a Chinese prisoner-of-war camp, 1943-45. Purchased by FoDA in conjunction with the Devon Family History Society and deposited in Devon Heritage Centre. For further details, see the press release on the SWHT website.
- Illustrated Manuscript of historical and architectural information on the churches in the Deanery of Shirwell in the Archdeaconry of Barnstaple. This impressive document comprises 2-7 pages on each of the following churches: Ashford, Berrynarbor, Bittadon, Braunton, Brendon, Challacombe, Charles, Combmartin, Countisbury, Georgeham, Goodleigh, Heanton, Highbray, Ilfracombe, Kentisbury, Lee Chapel, Loxhore, Lynton, Martinhoe, Marwood, Morthoe, Parracombe, Shirwell, Stoke Rivers, Trentishoe, West Buckland, West Down. Written in a small neat hand with drawings and watercolours of architectural details in the text and tipped in, some full page. Including drawings of features such as stained glass windows, recumbent monument figures, carved communion table rails, carved ceilings, columns, rubbings of brass inscriptions, reredros, fonts, floor plans, views of the exterior, coats of arms, etc. Purchased by FoDA and deposited in Devon Heritage Centre (accession 8757).
- FoDA joined with private donors Rachel Knowles and Richard Stephens in prchasing The Merivale Collection. Samuel Merivale (1715-1771) was a dissenting minister who came under the influence of Philip
Doddridge and spent most of his working life in Tavistock and Exeter. He married first Elizabeth
Schellaber and following her death he remarried, this time to Betsy Manning. Their son John Merivale
(1752-1831) married Ann Katenkamp (1754-1829). The only son of this marriage was John Herman
Merivale (1779-1844), lawyer and literary scholar, who married Louisa Heath. This couple were to
have six sons and six daughters, the oldest being Herman (1806-1874), followed by Charles (1808-1893), dean of Ely and historian of the Roman Empire. In the twentieth century several members of the Merivale family fought in the First World War, so the collection also includes diaries and scrapbooks detailing their experiences of the conflict. More generally, the papers also include correspondence, watercolours and sketches, poems and genealogical notes.
- FoDA arranged the deposit of two Cullompton leases, dated 1719 and 1791 (Devon Heritage Centre, accession 8266).
- Abstract of title from 1857 to fields called Northern and Southern Ridgway and closes called Wood Meadow and Buds in Heavitree. Purchased by FoDA and deposited in Devon Heritage Centre (accession 8291).
- FoDA arranged the deposit of six Quarter Session examinations, 1592-1649 (Devon Heritage Centre, accession 8406).
- FoDA paid for a set of photocopies of a seventeenth-century map of Newton Poppleford and the surrounding area (Devon Heritage Centre, accession 7683).
- The earliest known copy of the Barnstaple Town Chronicle, written by the town clerk Adam Wyatt in 1586-1608. FoDA purchased the handwritten extracts made in 1768 (North Devon Record Office, accession A316).
- FoDA arranged the deposit of a set of handwritten transcripts of the baptism register of Moretonhampstead (Devon Heritage Centre, accession 7094).
- FoDA contributed to the purchase by Plymouth and West Devon Record Office of the seven volumes of the diaries of the Victorian clergyman, Robert Mack, covering the years 1852-1868.
- Papers and records of Herbert Read Ltd (Devon Heritage Centre, accession 6854). FoDA was a joint contributor to the purchase of the collection of plans and drawings of ecclesiastical and other wood and stone work in Devon and elsewhere, including correspondence, files, worksheets and accounts, photographs and slides of restoration and new work.
- Part of a map of Crediton made in early 1743, just before a fire destroyed most of the old town. This complemented another portion of the same map that had been in Devon Heritage Centre since 1978. Purchased by FoDA in conjunction with the Crediton Area History and Museum Society.
- Papers of the Drake family of Colyton, Huntshaw and Wells (Devon Heritage Centre, accession 1700-0). FoDA was a joint contributor to the purchase of the extensive collection of deeds and leases 1606-1836, family papers 1778-1911, letters received by John Trefusis and papers, mainly parliamentary matters, 1627-1642; correspondence and papers of James Cragg junior relating to foreign affairs 1704-1720; letters received by Francis Drake relating to foreign affairs 1793-1820.