6.3. Colonel Richard [11B1] (c.1597-1662)

Helen Moorwood 2013

N.B. By clicking on the coloured title you can return to the original articles written in early 2004 and placed by Peter Duxbury on A Duxbury Family Website in March 2004, where this one still is, under:

Helen's Story: from Duxbury to Shakespeare. The story of William Shakespeare's Lancashire Ancestry, by Helen Moorwood

12. Colonel Richard Standish of Duxbury (c. 1597-1662)

Family in his youth and later

N.B. Most of this text from 2004 still stands, with a few silent corrections and PIN Nos added to names. However, a new Family Tree has been produced, which supersedes any previous ones. See the note at the end. Meanwhile, this is part (4) of (1) to (16) CR. [2013 HM]

6.3. (4) CR Immediate Family

Richard’s uncle Alexander[10B2] (b. c.1568) was married to an Ireland of The Hutt, widow of Clifton, both old gentry families, but neither of which has occurred (as yet) as significant other than to prove, if more proof were needed, that the Standishes of Duxbury married into the top drawer.  

Aunt Ratcliff(e) is interesting for two reasons: (1) this is the first instance in any Standish of Duxbury families of the use of a surname as a Christian name, aping a habit recently established by the aristocracy, it seems, and (2) she has been previously confused with Ratcliff(e), a daughter of Thomas the MP[11A1], thus compounding other muddles. As this Ratcliffe (in Family B) was presumably born within a decade or two of her brothers, this places her birth well before the end of the 16th century. The other one was born in the late 1620s.  

Richard’s mother was Elizabeth Legh, a granddaughter of Sir Piers Legh of Lyme, daughter of his son and heir Piers/ Peter. This was obviously significant when Richard was looking for a second wife, who was to be a Legh (of Adlington?). We will meet her later.     

The following family tree gives Colonel Richard’s most immediate relations, repeating the Visitation Pedigree above, but adding dates easily established by appearances in Parish Registers, the Admon of Alexander (d. 1648) and the Will of Anne (1651, whom Richard seems to have ‘adopted’ as a sister) and Colonel Richard’s own will (1657). The most striking fact is that none of Richard’s siblings married, apart from a possible final and tenth child born after 1613, named in Anne’s will in January 1651 as ‘sister Whalley’. This Anne is a bit of a mystery. She has been placed here with a question mark for her parents, but it is difficult to see where else she might have fitted into the family picture. A previous Pedigree Chart (Wilson, 1903) gives Thomas and Elizabeth née Vaux a daughter Ann who died at Dotchet in Devon, but this one definitely died in Duxbury and the one in Devon was almost certainly the young daughter of Captain Thomas, killed at the siege of Manchester, who also very confusingly married Elizabeth née Vaux, daughter of George. Anne of the Will (certainly daughter of Thomas, because she says so in her Will) was obviously the life and soul of the family and local community, naming dozens of people in her will as she distributed her goods, chattels – and money. She didn’t mention a dog, but she left money for a horse for baby Richard[12B1] (Colonel Richard’s son and heir), who had just been born.


Update 2013

The brief family tree of 2004 has been omitted here, because the fairly definitive complete Family Tree is now given in 3. FT 3. Family B 1346-1756 and the 1613 Visitation Pedigree of this family is now given in 4. VP5. 1613 Family B.

Col. Richard’s maternal grandfather, a son of Sir Piers Legh of Lyme, has been searched for in vain amongst the Pedigree Charts given in Ormerod and all Legh VPs of 1613 and 1664/5. He is incorporated with several question marks on Family Tree 3. FT 6. Colonel Richard’s in-laws: LEGH of Lyme.

Proof of his father owning land in Manchester in 1597, “Mr Standysh new enclosure on the Low”, has since been found in Dr John Dee’s Diary, when he took a perambulation round Manchester as part of a “survey geometrical”. There was, as far as is known, no other Standish family living in Manchester at the time.


May 4th, I, with Sir Robert Barber, curat, and Robert Talsley, clerk of Manchester parish church, with diverse of the town of divers ages, went in perambulation to the bownds of Manchester parish: began at the Leeless Bench against Prestwich parish, and so had a vew of the thre corne staks, and then down tyll Mr. Standysh new enclosure on the Low, wher we stayed and vewed the stak yet standing in the bank of the dich, being from the corne a eleven measures of Mr. Standley’s stak then in his hand, and two fote more, which still I did measure afterward, and it did conteyn in Kentish feete 6 ynches and thre quarters. The survey geometricall of the very circuits of Manchester parish was ended in this, being the sixth day of my work.

(Dr John Dee’s Diary, p. 36, Online, Project Gutenberg.)

Consultation with Dr Michael Powell of Chetham’s Library in 2012 confirmed that no maps of Manchester exist that give these details, which might identify the site of “Mr. Standysh new enclosure on the Low”. Which “Mr. Standley” had lands next door is difficult to ascertain.


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