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Diary Entry for the year 1827

Accounts entry



1st January 1827

Working upon the Bincombe Awd Maps

Received £0 0s 0d

Paid Brot from last years Book £20 1s 0d

This entry is unusual for in all the other diaries there is always some positive balance brought forward from the previous year. This diary opens with a debit. Does Brot refer to his brother I wonder?

2nd4th January 1827


5th January 1827

Do. – The Duke of York died

The diary notes that this was a “Holiday at the Bank, Exchequer, and S.Sea House.” Unlike today this was on a Friday.

6th January 1827

Went to Symondsbury respg Mr Pitfield Plan

Expenses at Bridport 3s 6d

John Pitfield was Captain in the Symondsbury Company of the Dorset Voluntary Infantry or First Western Battalion. This was the company of infantry that John Martin had joined and promoted to ensign in 1807

7th January 1827

At Home

8th January 1827

Went to Wraxall with my Cows. Mrs Martin put to Bed of a Son ¼ past 8 o clock in the evening named Arthur

Paid Postage on Bincombe 2s 4d

Pd Postage T Hinton 8d

Do. my own 2s

A typically short entry recording ‘s birth. was the fourth and last child; only Caroline and Arthur ’s births appear in the diaries.

9th January 1827

Went to Sydling respg my demand upon Devenish and Watts

10th January 1827

Making Bincombe Award of Roads and Allotments [charge]

11th January 1827

Attending Lord Ilchesters Rent day at the Acorn

It is not clear precisely what role Martin had under the Earl. Martin was the Steward of the Manor of Rampisham but the Earl’s estate was much, much larger and it is likely that Wm Jennings Jnr. was the Steward and Martin worked under him.

12th January 1827

Bincombe Inclosure making award of Allotments – ½ day

13th January 1827

Bincombe Inclosure making Award

14th January 1827

At Home

15th January 1827

Making Bincombe Award

16th January 1827


17th January 1827

Finished the Bincombe ^ Draft of Award of Allotments – charge 5 days

Paid Mr Martin £1

18th January 1827

Went to Toller Coursing with Mr Thos Jest and dined at Mr E Popes

Purchased Errands at Yeovil 5s 6d

More Hare Coursing.

19th January 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Went to Yeovil and Purchased 30,000 Thorn Plants of Male of Lambrook at 15/s to be delivered at Bincombe [charge]

East Lambrook in Somerset. Note the curious way he refers to the seller as ‘Male’ of Lambrook.

20th January 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Draft of Award of Roads [charge]

For some reason [not repeated] he decided to put quotation marks around “Sturminster Inclosure”. Why is not known but he did not do this for Bincombe or any of the other inclosures.

22nd January 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Award of Allotments


Sold Andrew Groves Willow Bed at Wraxall at 55s

Rope Yarn 33 yd at 7d

Pd Man 3s 6d

IN PENCIL Enquire the boundaries of the Marsh

23rd January 1827

Went to Ransom upon Mrs Daniels Business

24th January 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Award of Allotments

25th January 1827

John Beater Hauling Dung

Writing Ransom Fair Accts

Paid for Paper 1s 6d

Paid for Paper 1s

Pd Expenses at Dorchester 5s

More dung. Important in the days before artificial fertilisers.

26th January 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Award of Allotments

27th January 1827

Went to Dorchester to meet Harpet Lane Men respg Hurdles &c for Bincombe

The only Harpet Lane I have come across was at Blandford- now disappeared.

28th January 1827

At Home

29th January 1827

Sturminster Inclosure” making Draft of Award

30th January 1827

Went to Ransom and Hook

31st January

Sturminster Inclosure” making Draft of Award ½ a day.

Another bank holiday on an odd day. This time a Wednesday.


1st February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Draft of award Numbering Allotments &c

2nd February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

Allotting the small Allotments on the Map Proposed to be Stocked in Common

See notes on Sturminster Inclosure. At inclosure landowners would often retain some elements of the open field system. The tithe map of 1840 shows a number of these small allotments.

3rd February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

completing award of Allotments ½ day

Measuring Fences on Bincombe Map other half

8 days in the whole for award

If the scale of the map were sufficiently large accurate measurement could be taken from the map and did not need to be measured on the ground. Landowners were charged per foot per yard or per lug [ 5.5 yards] of length so accurate measurements were needed. 3 chains [66 yards] of real length represented by one inch of map length was deemed to be the smallest scale suitable.

4th February 1827

At Home

5th February 1827

Sturminster Inclosure”

making Schedule for repair of Private Roads £2 2s 0d

6th February 1827

Went to Ransom and Wraxall and adding up Lord Hollands Accounts

7th February 1827

Finished adding Lord Hollands Accounts


2 Cows 5 weeks

1 Cow 8 weeks

Cows when ### [? due]

8th February 1827

Preparing for Tarrant Hinton Inclosure Award and writing to Mr Harvey on Sturminster Inclosure and sent his Draft of Allotments for award.

9th February 1827

Scaling Allotments on Tarrant Hinton Bushes and Down and taking up New Roads

10th February 1827


11th February 1827

At Home

12th February 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Attending Sale at Cerne of Fir Poles when Bought 6 Lots and returned Home again

Paid at Expenses at Dorchester 4s 6d

13th February

Preparing allotments for Tarrant Hinton Award.

14th February 1827

Thos How fetched a Cart Load of Hay

Working upon Tarrant Hinton award

Pd Thomas How in full for Carriage of Hay & Dutch oven Paint &c from Yeovil 6s

15th February 1827

Went to Ransom with Mr Jesty and dined at Mr Willm Jennings

16th February 1827

Tarrant Hinton Inclosure

Finished award of Allotments charge 2 days for Award and 3 Scaling New Allotments and taking up Roads

17th February 1827

Went to Ransom and Wraxall

18th February 1827

At Home

19th February 1827

David Childs and Son Wheeling Dung into my Garden and myself Pruning Bushes

Paid David Childs in full of all demand 5s 6d

20th February 1827

making up the Ransom Accts

Paid Mr Norman 100 [sic] Poor Rates £1 0s 10d

21st February 1827

Went to Ransom resptg arrears

22nd February 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Attending Commnr reading Draft of Award

Bincombe parish was owned by the Master and Scholars of Caius College Cambridge. The inclosure commissioners were a local man – John Baverstock Knight, and a surveyor, all the way from Norwich, Robert Wright. He was also the valuer at the time of the tithe commutations. Martin was surveyor to both inclosure and commutation.

23rd February 1827

Do. went to Bincombe with Mr Wright

Expenses at Bincombe Meeting £1 12s 0d

24th February 1827

Dined at Dorchester with Commnr and returned Home

25th February 1827

At Home

26th February 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Putting Names Numbers and Measures in Rough Map and writing request for making old Inclosures allottable

27th February 1827

Went to Frampton Cerne &c for a Summons for the Gundrys’ at Ransom for cutting down a Young ash Tree but Mr Brown was from Home

This was a serious matter. It was permissible to take fallen wood for firewood from the common but villagers were not allowed to cut ‘maiden’ trees i.e. those that had not been coppiced or pollarded.

28th February 1827


Making Rate for repair of Private Roads and Completing filling up Blanks in Award &c

Paid Man looking after Cows and Horse 4s 6d

Pd Shoeing Horse at Ransom 2s


1st March 1827

Went Coursing with Mr J J Crew& Mr E Thompkins at Sydling

Paid MrsMartin £5

Paid Expenses my own 6s 6d

Paid Mr Coombs for Warrant 11s

Paid Expenses 6s

The warrant was to order the arrest of the Gundry’s.

2nd March 1827

Went to Ransom and working upon Ransom Accounts

3rd March 1827

Went to Dorchester and got Wm & Francis Gundry put into Gaol for cutting a Young Tree at Ransom slept at Waterson Mr Hardings

Martin was acting on behalf of the Ransom Estate. He was successful in his quest they spent two weeks in Dorchester Gaol before being released without charge.

4th March 1827

At Waterson

5th March 1827

Bincombe Inclosure”

Measuring Banks &c at Bincombe and looking over Works charge

Paid Men measuring banks at Bincombe 4s 6d

He put quotations around this one as well. He was not consistent.

6th March 1827

Do. – went to Woodstreet in the Evening charge

7th March 1827

Coursing at Woodstreet with Mr Robt Jesty

8th March 1827

Took Bincombe in

my way home

returned Home in Evening


Agreed with Roper at 13/s per Lug for Wall Mr Read to allow 1s/ ###

The Lug is one of those archaic units of measure that seemed to vary from place to place and on which nobody seems to be able to say -”it was this”. The statute lug was the same length to a rod, which is to say 16 ½ feet, but anywhere between 3 and 8m long has been quoted.

9th March 1827

Went to Yeovil respg Thorn Plants &c dined at Mr Thompkins’s

Paid for Errands at Yeovil 14s 6d

10th March 1827

about various jobs in garden

11th March 1827

At Home

12th March 1827

Went to Symondsbury and reced orders from the Revd Mr Raymond to Measure and Map his Estate at Symondsbury

Expenses at Bridport 1s 6d

13th March 1827

Finished the Ransom Accts

14th March 1827

Taking off Tarrant Hinton Award Maps

15th March 1827

Working upon T Hinton Award Maps

Pd for Veal 6s

Tarrant Hinton Postage 1s 6d

Sturminster 1s 6d

Bincombe 3s 6d

My own 1s 6d

16th March 1827

Dorchester Assizes

Working upon Tarrant Hinton award Maps

17th March 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Went to Dorchester to Meet Hurdle Men paying Bankers and Hurdle Men

Paid Expenses at Dorchester 4s 6d

Presumably a reference to the men physically inclosing the land by throwing up banks and constructing temporary fences with hurdles.

18th March 1827

At Home Mr Jesty of Woodstreet here

19th March 1827

Went to Ransom Farmer Swaffield looking over Fences and John Beater weighing 18 Hundred of Hay from Mr Jestys Rick

The Beater family appear occasionally in the diaries. John’s wife was Maria.

20th March 1827

Mr Watts came to Evershot this morning respg Symondsbury & working upon Tarrant Hinton award Maps

Based in Yeovil, Edward Watts was a land surveyor in his own right.

21st March 1827

Went to Bridport and Symondsbury

Expenses at Bridport 2s 6d

22nd March 1827


23rd March 1827

Went to Ransom and settled with Mr Duke his Rent

Pd for Veal 6s

There were several members of the Duke family. We do not know which this was.

24th March 1827

Working upon Tarrant Hinton Award Maps

25th March 1827

at Home

26th March 1827

Sowing Seeds 7c in the Garden

27th March 1827

Tarrant Hinton Inclosure attending Commnr at Evershot settling draft of award

28th March 1827


29th March 1827

Went to Ransom & working upon T Hinton award Maps

30th March 1827

Making out Measurements of Lewell Farm for Mr Moyle

Higher Lewell farm was the inspiration for Thomas Hardy’s “Talbothays” dairy in Tess of the d’Urbevilles.

31st March 1827

Do. and working in Garden

Paid Mr Cave for Gin £1 5s

Pd Gardening 15s 6d


1st April 1827

At Home

2nd April 1827

making Sketch of Lewell for Mr Moyle

3rd April 1827

Do. and went to Ransom

4th April 1827

Do. —- Do.

5th April 1827

Doing a Job for Mr Wm Jennings Diagram of the Prices of Corn

It is not clear what this refers to but it may be that he was demonstrating how to calculate a corn rent. That is a rent that varies with the price of wheat.

6th April 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Went to Bincombe respecting the Fences

7th April 1827

At 6/9

Do. – and Purchased 40 Doz Hurdles of a Man of Dince [sic] and 2 Loads of Ayers of Piddletown

Note the way he refers refers to the nurserymen as “Man of Dince” much as he did “Male of Lambrook”.

8th April 1827

At Home

9th April 1827

Journey to West Coker to Value some Lands for Mr Tilby of Devizes

Paid for Paper 2s 6d

West Coker in Somerset. Martin was also to buy land there.

10th April 1827

Making valuation of the above &c

7s Received for a Calf

Paid for 18 Hundred of Hay £4 10s 0d

11th April 1827

Taking up David Child’s Banking on Map and went to Ransom with Mr Trenchard respg the Leigh Estate

£10 10s 0d Received ½ yrs Salary from Ransom due Lady Day 1827

12th April 1827

Working upon Award Maps

Paid Man Looking after Horse & Cows 8s

13th April 1827

Good Friday

14th April 1827

Doing a Little to Allington Map

On occasions we find an entry with no antecedent entries. In this case he was acting as a tithe valuer to the Rector, Henry Fox. Probably a relation of the Earl of Ilchester.

15th April 1827

At Home

16th April

Holiday at the Bank Exchequer and S Sea House

Writing in Names of Fields in Allington Map

Paid for Paper 1s 6d

Paid Man cleaving wood 2s 6d

17th April 1827

Making out Fair Valuation of Allington Tithes

Pd Dorchester Paper 13s 6d

18th – 21stApril 1827


Paid for a Pig £1 9s

22nd April 1827

At Home

23rd April 1827

Finished Allington Tithes

24th April 1827

Receiving Tithes at Allington for Mr Fox

25th April 1827

Do. and returned Home

Expenses at Bridport 5s

26th April 1827

Went to Ransom and Doing some Jobs in Garden

£3 3s 0d Received of Mr Nicholetts for Measuring boundaries at Bridport Harbour

Edwin Nicholetts was a local “attorney at law” or in other words a solicitor. Martin may have been acting for him personally or commissioned by Nicholetts for one of his clients.

27th April 1827

Working upon Bincombe Award Maps

28th April 1827


29th April 1827

At Home

30th April 1827

Working upon Bincombe Award Maps and Dined at Association Meeting at the Acorn

Paid Clothing at the Association which I paid twice before 5s

This probably refers to the ‘Western Association for the Protection of Property & Prosecution of Offences’. This association protected some sixty parishes and regularly held its meetings at the acorn.


1st May 1827

Finished Bincombe award Maps

2nd May 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Journey to Bincombe respecting Fences

Paid Expenses 2s 6d

Paid ½ Years Taxes £2 19s 5 ½ d

3rd May 1827

Writing Letters to Messrs Knight Coombs & Wright respecting Meeting to sign award

Mr Coombs was the clerk to the inclosure.

4th May 1827

Making out Tithe Receipts for Mr Fox – Bill &c

5th May 1827

Working upon Tarrant Hinton Award Maps

6th May 1827

Turned my Cows to Grass

7th May 1827

Working upon Tarrant Hinton Award Maps

Paid Farmer Ellis’s Bill for Cheese &c £2 5s 7d

8th -12th May 1827


Paid Selwood & Co for Coals £2 3s 4d

Paid Mr Richards for New Door in Front New Lock &c £2 16s 5d

Pd Mr Ways Bill for mending windows 2s

13th May 1827

At home

14th May 1827

Evershot Fair

Paid Farmer Squibb of Melbury for apples 12s

Pd Mr Rawlings of Hook for Oats £1 16s 0d

15th May 1827

Receiving Rents and Tithes at Rampisham

Pd Farmer Ellis for a sack of Potatoes 5s

Paid Andrew Groves Bill up to 15th May £1 8s 7d

16th May 1827

Working upon T Hinton Award Maps

Paid John Davis for Straw 19s 6d

17th -18th May 1827


19th May 1827

Do. Rook Shooting at Woolcombe dined at Mr Wm Jennings with Mr Jesty & Brown

Powder and Shot 4s

Paid a Years Tithe due Ly Dy 1827 £1 14s 0d

Pd Man Gardening & cleaning out Pond 8s

20th May 1827

At Home Mr Jesty & Brown dined with us

21st May 1827

Working upon Tarrant Hinton Awards Plans

Paid John Sibley Shearing my Hedges 1s

22nd23rd May 1827


24th May 1827

Making out Bills &c

25th May 1827

Do. Do.


a Quarter of Veal this day of Mr J 18lb at 5d 7/6d

26th May 1827

Do. and went to Holway Rook Shooting

Paid Gardening 2s 6d

Shot Copper Caps 1s

Holway farm is near Chalmington

27th May 1827

At Home

28th May 1827

Writing out Bincombe Bill

Paid Thos Staples Bill for Coping Stone and Hearth Stone £2 11s 2d

29th May 1827

Do. and Tarrant Hinton

30th May 1827

Bincombe Meeting to ### award

Went to Dorchester to see Mr Wright but the Meeting was put off Slept at Mr Knights at Piddlehinton

Heifer to Mrs Smiths B

Pd expenses at Dorchester 3s 6d

31st May

Returned Home


1st June 1827

Writing & Examining Sturminster Bill of Inclosure

2nd June 1827

Preparing to take of Mr Pitfields Map & went to Ransom

Pd John Beaters Bill for Coals Carriage of Dung &c £6 16s 0d

This must have been an important commission for Martin as John Pitfield owned over 500 acres freehold in Symondsbury.

3rd June 1827

At Home

4th June 1827

Working upon Mr Pitfields Fair Map at Symondsbury

Pd for Two Pigs £2 18s 0d

Pd Gardening 3s 6d

5th– 6th June 1827


7th June 1827

Went to Bridport and Allington and received Bills

£3 3s 0d Reced of Mr Templer for Measuring at Bradpole

£25 12s 0d Do. Roberts N Groves

£18 16s 0d Do. Down Hall

Paid expenses 3s 6d

£33 10s 0d Reced of the Revd. Mr Fox for Valuing and making Map of Allington Tithes

For valuing the Down Hall estate he earned the modest fee of £18 which in today’s terms is only about £1200.00p

8th June 1827

Working upon Mr Pitfields Fair Map of Symondsbury

Paid for Silk HandK 5s 6d

9th June 1827


10th June 1827

At Home

11th June 1827

Working upon Mr Pitfields Map

Paid Mr Stocker for Mr Brown mendg Lock of Gun 5s

Bincombe Inclosure postage 3s

Postage T Hinton 10d

On business 1s 2d

12th June 1827


17s 4d Received of Mr Knight what I paid for him at Blandford

Pd Mr Chubb Acorn for lamb 4s 10d

13th June 1827

Tarrant Hinton Inclosure

Attending Commnr at Evershot when Fair Draft of award was Read over

Pd Church Rates 2s 1d

Pd at Yeovil for receipt stamp 1s 6d

Pd Mr Hanhaines Bills £2 9s 11d

Paid Mr Edwards Do. £3 19s 6d

Pd Price Pendry & Co £1 1s 11d

Pd for a cheese 15s

14th June 1827

Working upon Symondsbury Map

Pencil 1s

Savoy Plants 9d

New Hat £1 5s 0d

15th June 1827

Went to Yeovil respg Mr Raymond’s Map & paid all I owed at Yeovil

16th June 1827

Doing Various Jobs in Garden and went to Ransom respg Dukes cutting down Trees

17th June 1827

At Home

18th June 1827

Begun Mowing

Working upon Mr Pitfields Plan

19th June 1827

Do. and Haymaking

20th – 22nd June 1827


23rd June 1827

Met Mr Batten at Ransom respg Dukes cutting down Young trees

Mr Batten was a solicitor at Yeovil and we might presume solicitor to the Rampisham estate. Cutting down trees was a serious business as we saw previously with the Gundry’s.

24th June 1827

At Home

25th June 1827

Ricked part of my Hay

Pd Haymakers 5s 6d

26th June 1827

Finished Ricking

27th June 1827

Went to Winterbourne and Valued Mrs Lisles Farm occupied by Mr John Davis after which I went to Bincombe and Slept at Mr Reads at Upwey

Expenses at Bincombe and Winterbourne 4s 6d

Pd for a New Measuring chain 14s

Chains could stretch for a variety of reasons. They had to be replaced regularly and it was recommended that they were calibrated against two fixed marks each time they were used.

28th June 1827

Bincombe Inclosure

Letting Roper more Walls and other Matters relating to the inclosure and returned home


29th June 1827

Working upon Mr Pitfields Map and went to Ransom

30th June 1827

Tipping Rick and Working upon Mr Pitfields Map

Pd Haymakers 16s

Pd Mrs Martin 3s

Pd Isaac Frampton Hauling Dirt &c to make Rick Staddle 4s 6d

Having discussed this with a professional thatcher we believe Tipping means thatching the rick.

Staddle stones were used to keep buildings or in this case a hay rick off the ground.


1st July 1827

At Home

2nd July 1827

Working upon Mr Pitfields Map

3rd July 1827

Finished Mr Pitfields Plan and making out Valuation of Winterbourne Farm

4th July 1827

Do. and doing Various Jobs in Garden

Pd for 16 cwt of Coals £1 6s 1d

5th July 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps

6th July 1827

Working upon Sturminster award Maps &c


Sow early York from this time to the 12th

Early Yorks were cabbages.

7th July 1827

Working upon Sturminster award Maps

Paid for 16 cwt coals £1 5s 8d

8th July 1827

At Home

9th July 1827

Working upon Sturminster award Maps

Paid Man Cracking Stones 13s

10th – 14th July 1827


15th July 1827

At Home

16th July 1827

Working upon Sturminster award Maps

17th July 1827

Cerne Turnpike

Met Mr Berjue at Lions Gate to Measure & Value Lands taken for New Road -we could not agree.

Mr Berjue was a land surveyor at Sherborne. Lyons Gate [as it is today] was near the terminal part of the turnpike.

18th July 1827

Went to Symondsbury with Mr Pitfields Map

£42 Received of Mr Pitfield for Map

Paid Mr Wain of Beaminster for paper £2 19s 0d

19th July 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps

Paid Mrs Martin on Acct of House £5

20th July 1827

Went to Yeovil respg Eleanor’s going to school &c

Pd for dessent [sic] Spoon Knife & Fork &c for Eleanor to take to School 15s

Eleanor was baptised on 4th April 1818 and in July 1827 she was 9 years old and ready to go to school. Mrs Fry’s school was in the Kingston area of Yeovil.

21st July 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps

Pd other Errands at Yeovil 5s 6d

Pd for a new Tap 2s

Pd weeding garden &c 4s

22nd July 1827

At Home

23rd July 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps &c

Paid John Beater for Coals and Carriage and in full of all demand £4 13s 6d

Paid small Sums to make up Accts 6s 6d

24th25th July 1827


Pd Haymakers 5s 6d

26th July 1827

Do. and went to Ransom

Expenses at Bincombe and Winterbourne 4s 6d

27th July 1827

Do. Do.

28th July 1827

Making up my Accounts &c

29th July 1827

Went to Wood Street respg Wraxall

At Home

30th July 1827

Returned from Woodstreet

5s Reced of Mr Brown for Gun Lock

£3 2s 0d J Martin reced of Mr Whittle on the Chilfrome Inclosure for ploughing &c which same must be paid to Noake and Bunch

£2 1 0 to Noake &

£1 1 0 to Bunch

31st July 1827

Looking over Wraxall Farms with Mr J Jesty


1st August 1827

Making out Valuation of Wraxalls

Paid Mr Norman 100 Poor Rates £1 0 10d

2nd August 1827

Making out Fair Valuation of Winterbourne Farm – Mr Claytons Sale

Paid Skimming Poor Close 3s

Pd Lots Bought at Mrs Claytons Sale 9s

Paid for Seeds 3s

3rd August 1827

making out Fair Valuation of Winterbourne Farm

4th August 1827

Went to Dorchester Assizes

5th August 1827

At Home

6th August 1827

Went to Ransom resp repairs Eleanor went to Yeovil School Mrs Frys

Paid Eleanor’s Coach Hire to Yeovil 7s

£7 0 3d Reced of Mr Enson for Butter

Pd Mr Enson his Bill for Goods £26 19 2d

Paid for Shot 1s

Clearly he wanted Eleanor to arrive at school in style.

7th August 1827

Went over Wraxall Farm with Mr B & J Jesty

8th August 1827

Working upon Ransom Accounts

Received £142 2s 4d

Paid £112 19s 4d

In week 32 he records the income received and the expenditure. By this time he was just over £30 in profit for the year. Doesn’t sound a lot but equivalent to a years wages for an agricultural labourer.

9th August 1827


10th August 1827

Went to Sturminster respg draft of award

11th August 1827

At Sturminster reading over Rough Draft of award & returned Home

12th August 1827

At Home

13th August 1827

Went to Melpash [sic] to take plan of Fields near the Half Moon Inn

Melplash today

14th August 1827

Making Plan of the above

15th August 1827

Making advertisement of Sturminster Private Road


Sow Lettuce Seeds from this to 24th

Blandford Races

It is unlikely that he attended Blandford Races on this occasion as it was a fair distance away. The race course was founded in 1630 and the last race was run in 1844. It was situated where the modern army base now is.

16th August 1827

Do. Maps of Roads charge

17th August 1827


Finished Maps of Private Roads

Charge 3 Guineas

18th August 1827

Making up Accounts &c

19th August 1827

At Home

Mr Cooper the Master of Evershot School died aged 55

Dangerously close to Martin’s own age.

20th August 1827

Went to Mintern to meet Mr Percy the 3rd Man between Mr Berjue and myself upon Cerne Turnpike and went to Cerne to get Mr Cockeram to sign notice of Meeting on Sturminster

Paid Alex Wellman for Gardening 9s9d

Pd Richd How going to Dorchester with Cow 1s 6d

21st August 1827

Making out Fair Bill on T Hinton Inclosure

Mrs Martin went to Woodstreet


Weymouth Regatta

22nd August 1827

Preparing to go to Blandford

23rd August 1827

Tarrant Hinton Inclosure to sign award at Blandford making up Accounts

24th August 1827

At Blandford reading the Award when the same was signed

25th August 1827

Returning home slept at Woodstreet

26th August 1827

at Woodstreet and slept at Mr Robt Jesty’s at Fordington

Pd for a Waistcoat piece 7s

Pd Expenses at Blandford £1 10s

Paid Servants at Woodstreet & Fordington 3s

27th August 1827

Returned home

28th August 1827

Went to Ransom on Mrs Daniells business

29th August 1827

Doing various jobs at Home

30th August 1827

Went to Ninehead respg Wraxall with Mr Robt Jesty Slept at Mrs Baileys

Not Known.

31st August 1827

At Ninehead and Dined with Mr Bindon at Gunden Farm


1st September 1827

Mr Jesty took Wraxall Farm this Morning for Term of 12 Yrs from next Mic at £840 the Tenant paying the Land Tax &c

2nd September 1827

At Home dined with Mr Thos Jesty at Oiley Well

3rd September 1827

Out Shooting

Paid Postage on my own Acct 2s

Do. Bincombe 1s 6d

Do. Businesses 1s

4th September 1827

Doing Various jobs at Home and Went to Ransom in Afternoon.

Sturminster Inclosure Paid Expenses when read over drafting award 10th 11th Aug 12s 6d

5th September 1827

Went to Weymouth Races

Paid Mr Pouncey for a New Horse Brush 4s 6d

He attended the races both here and at Dorchester on several occasions. No race course survives in Dorset today.

6th September 1827

At Bincombe respg Walls charge

Paid last Dorchester assizes 3s 6d

Paid small sums not recollected 9s

7th September 1827

Went to Ransom

£12 8s Reced ½ yrs interest in 4% Cents 600£}

See text for discussion of his investments.

8th September 1827

Working upon Ransom

Pd for Grass seed 3s

Expenses at the Races 4s 6d Slept at Stinsford

Pd Thos Cox’s Bill £2 14 4

9th September 1827

At Home

10th September 1827

Begun Lord Ilchesters accounts

11th September 1827

Writing Lord Ilchesters Accounts

12th September 1827


Paid for Silk Handkerchief and Rhubarb [sic] 6s

An unusual combination of purchases.

13th September 1827

Do. and Went to Ransom

Paid for Eleanor 4s

Pd Cooper J Chubb for Laths 2s

14th – 15th September 1827


16th September 1827

At Home

17th September 1827

Sturminster Inclosure

attendg Commnr hearing objections to private Roads

18th September 1827

Do. Do.

Making Draft of Award

Expenses at Sturminster 18s

19th September 1827

Returning Home slept at Woodstreet

20th September 1827

At Woodstreet went to Woodbury Hill Fair

Expenses at Woodbury Hill Fair 5s 6d

Near Bere Regis. Day 1 was for wholesale traders, Day 2 was for Gentlefolk devoted to entertainment and oyster eating, Day 3 Allfolks day, Day 4 Sheep Fair day and Day 5 Pack and Penny Day when all unsold goods were sold off cheap. More information may be found at

21st September 1827

At Woodstreet went coursing with Mr Jesty

22nd September 1827

Returned Home

Expenses at Woodstreet and Dorchester on my way Home 2s 6d

Paid Gardening 4s

23rd September 1827

At Home

24th September 1827

Writing Lord Ilchesters Accts

Paid Richard How going to Dorchester with Car[riage] 6s

25th September 1827

Went to Mr Noakes Sale

Went to Dorchester races

Paid for Lots at Mr John Petty’s sale 18s 8d

26th September 1827

Writing Notices to quit at Ransom and went there in the afternoon

Went to Dorchester Races

Paid at the Races 3s

27th September 1827

Writing Notices to quit at Ransom and went there in the afternoon

Paid Mr Watts on Acct Surveying £20 0 0

This is the first reference to Edward Watts a surveyor in Yeovil.

28th September 1827

Writing Lord Ilchesters Accounts

29th September 1827

Went to Ransom

30th September 1827

At Home

White began looking after my horse.


1st October 1827

Writing Lord Ilchesters Accounts and went with Mr Batten to Ransom in the afternoon

2nd October 1827

Writing Lord Ilchesters Accounts

3rd October 1827

Do. and went to Ransom

4th October 1827

Writing Lord Ilchesters Accounts

Pd Mrs Martin on Acct £2

Paid Mr Fish of Beaminster for wine £2 13s

5th October 1827

Do. and went to Ransom

6th October 1827

Taking of Symondsbury on Sketch Paper – Thos How fetched Hay from Courtlands


Paid White on Acct 2s 6d

Occasionally he borrowed from the local work men. In this case 2s.

7th October 1827

At Home

8th October 1827

Making Sketch of Symondsbury

Evershot Court

Paid my Lords Rent 3s 6d

Martin was not Steward at Evershot as he was at Rampisham. One of the duties of a tenant of the Manor of Evershot was to attend the annual court which was what he was Doing.

9th – 11th October 1827


Paid for Carpet Purchased at Mrs Coopers Sale £2 12s 6d

12th October 1827

Making reference Book for Symondsbury

13th October 1827

Went Coursing at Sydling

14th October 1827

At home

15th October 1827

Writing Symondsbury reference Book rough copy

Paid White for work 3s

Paid washing 2s

Paid Mrs Martin 2s 6d

16th October 1827

Do. Mr & Mrs Jesty at Evershot

Arthur Christened

Martin never recorded or celebrated any birthday in the early diaries.

17th October 1827

Writing Symondsbury Reference

Paid Mr Penny for Loudens Agriculture £2 10s 0d

18th October 1827

Rampisham Court

19th October 1827

Measuring Land at Chalmington

20th October 1827

Casting the above charge 3£

21st October 1827

At Home

22nd October 1827

Writing Symondsbury reference

23rd October 1827

Do. finished the same

24th October 1827

Went to Ransom and Doing various Jobs at Home

Paid Mr Hoskins ½ year Tithe 12s 9d

25th October 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps

Pd Mrs Martin on Account £3

26th October 1827

Went to Symondsbury with Mr Raymonds Map

£80 Received of the Revd. Mr Raymond for Symondsbury Map

27th October 1827

Went to Ransom and Wraxall

£6 6s 0d Reced of Mr Tucker Beaminster Himself against Steel

28th October 1827

At Home

Expenses at Bridport 2s

29th October 1827

Working upon Sturminster Award Maps

Reced 1yrs Ints on Bishopstone due 29th Sept last £39 18s 6d

Paid White looking after Horse 4s

Paid small sums not recollected £1

30th October 1827

Went to Ransom to prepare for Mr Knights viewing Dukes Cutting trees

It is not clear what this refers to. Mr Knight was presumably John Baverstock Knight. Thomas Duke was a tenant of Mrs Daniell’s of Rampisham. It is clearly in a different category to the Gundry’s cutting down a tree. No magistrates or gaol involved here.

31st October 1827

Completed the Sturminster Award Maps


1st November 1827

Went to Ransom with Mr Knight to View Dukes Delinquencies

Another bank holiday at the Bank, Exchequer and South Seas House. Another reference to John Baverstock Knight.

2nd November 1827

Went to Yeovil to Buy Thorn Plants &c but none in the Market

Paid Errands at Yeovil 5s 6d

Paid for Shot 1s

3rd November 1827

Went Coursing with Mr J J & Mr Coxwell and looked over the School Estate at Kingcombe

In 1825 John Jennings was involved in the rental of a farm at Toller Porcorum ‘known as School Lands’. It appears that the freehold of the land was held by the Evershot School. Today the site is occupied by the Dorset Wildlife Trust.

4th November 1827

At Home

5th November 1827

Went Rabbit Shooting at Wraxall

Paid for Rabbit Nets 3s

Paid half a years assessed tax [servts] 5s

Do. Composition £2 12s 4 ½ d

Land Tax 2s 7d

Game Certificate £3 14 6d

From 1777-1852 a tax was levied on the roughly 25,000 gentlemen employing about 50,000 male servants, although those engaged in husbandry, trade or manufacture were exempted. The rates varied from year to year.

Without the Game Certificate Martin could have been transported for possessing Rabbit nets.

6th November 1827

Doing Jobs in the Garden &c

Paid Mr Yeatman 2 Galls Gin £1 6s

Paid White digging Pots 3s

Expenses at Yeovil 3s 3d


7th November 1827

Working out Rampisham Rentals

Pd Barrett Shoemaker 10s 4d

Paid Mr Chubbs Bill for Hay &c £3 4 4d

Paid Mr Cave for Gin £1 12s

Pd John Beater Bill for Coals £4 6 6d

8th November 1827

Thos How fetched in Hay I O him 3s & 2s

9th November 1827

Went to Yeovil to Purchase Thorn Plants for Bincombe but could not as Male of Lambrook was not at the Market

Another reference to Male of Lambrook.

10th November 1827

Making out Potatoe Acct for last year – Lord Ilchesters small tenants

purchased 30,000 Thorn Plants of Male at 17/6 d

11th November 1827

At Home

12th November 1827

Rent day at Ransom

13th November 1827

Went to Beaminster respg Turnpike and Viewing intended alteration with {? Esq} Cox

This was an extension of the Maiden Newton turnpike through Evershot to Beaminster.

14th November 1827

At Beaminster for Measuring and Map[ping] Roads done but little on Acct of Rain

15th November 1827

At Beaminster Measuring Roads &c

16th November 1827

Do. returned Home in the Evening

17th November 1827

Went to Dorchester also and saw Horn & Roper on Bincombe

Waited on Mr Brown at Frampton where he gave me orders to Plan Forston House

Forston House was owned by a local magistrate Mr Francis John Browne. He donated the house to the county and it was to become first County Asylum.

In the early 1820’s it was occupied by Surgeon George Peach who Martin was to encounter again when he worked at Child Okeford.

18th November 1827

At Home

19th November 1827

At Beaminster upon the New intended Road

£47 10 0d Received of Mr Wm Jennings a years salary due Mich 1826

The suggestion is that this represents a salary for his work for the Earl of Ilchester.

10th – 22nd November 1827


Paid Yrs Insurance £1 9 8d

Do. for Carriage of Cider £1 5s

Paid for a New Tape 9s 6d

Measuring Tapes gradually replaced the Gunter Chain but they were not in widespread production until the 1840’s.

23rd November 1827

Do. returned Home

Pd two pair of Stocking 6s 6d

Pd Man with Level from Evershot 1s

Pd Man looking after Horse 3s

Paid Alex Wellmans Bill 6s 9d

Paid J[oseph] Groves for Straw 5s

Pd J Lake for Oats 12s 6d

24th November 1827

Went to Ransom and receiving Potatoe Rents at the Fox

25th November 1827

At Home

26th November 1827

Went Shooting at Holway with Major Wilson &c dined at Mr Hennings

27th November 1827

At Beaminster upon the New intended Road

28th -30th November 1827



1st December 1827

Do. and returned home

2nd December 1827

At Home

3rd December 1827

Doing Various Jobs at Home

4th December 1827

Plotting Beaminster Roads Plan

5th December 1827

Do. went to Sydling in the Morning

Paid Postage on my own 3s

Do. on Business 1s 6d

Do. Sturminster per Incl 1s

Do. Bincombe 2s

6th December 1827

Plotting Beaminster Roads Plan

7th December 1827

Do. making Section

Not only was he responsible for surveying the course of the new extension but also for drawing a cross section indicating how it was to be constructed.

8th December1827


9th December1827

At Home

10th December 1827

Beaminster for Roads making Section

Pd for drawing Paper 5s

11th December 1827


Pd Mrs Martin £2

Pd for Brooms 2s

12th December 1827

Do. ½ a day making Fair Plan

13th December 1827

Do. Do.

14th December 1827

Went to Bincombe respecting Fences

Pd for more Drawing Paper 7s6d

Pd expenses at Dorchester 7s 6d

15th December 1827

At Bincombe and returned Home

charge one day

16th December 1827

Working this day made two Sketches for Sir Wm Oglander and Dr Chaffey charge 2 guineas

17th December 1827

Went to Beaminster on the Road Estimate

18th December 1827

At Beaminster on the Estimate

Paid for Two Pairs of Shoes at Beaminster 19s 6d

19th December 1827

Do. and returned home in the evening

20th December 1827

Completing Plans and Sections

21st December 1827


22nd December 1827

Ascertaining Expense of Tunnel &c

Lent John Beater £6

Pd White looking after Horse 4s

We met the Beater family earlier in the year. John was of sufficient stature for Martin to lend him what was a substantial some in those days.

23rd December 1827

At Home working all day on the Beaminster Turnpike

24th December 1827

At Beaminster with Benj Cox on the Estimate

IN PENCIL Mr Trenchard over due for a Calf

25th December 1827

Working the whole of this day Beaminster with Benj Cox on the Estimate

26th December 1827

At Home making out Fair Estimate and preparing for the Meeting

Paid my Bill at the White Hart Beaminster for self Benj Cox &c see Back for Servants £8

Paid Rent of Poor Close 6s 6d

Paid Mr Eaton for Garden Seeds 6s 6d

Paid small sums not before entered £1 7s 10d

Paid Ch Man at Forston 2s 6d

Do. other Expenses 2s

Pd T How in full 7s 6d

Pd for New Knife 5s 6d

Pd Stevens of Bridport Painting Front Doors 10s

27th December 1827

Attending at Beaminster where Estimate and Plans were laid before the Commissioners

28th December 1827

Working upon Lord Ilchesters Accts

29th December 1827


30th December 1827

Do. all the day

31st December 1827

Went to Forston to take Plan of Forston House for Mr Brown but the Rain came on so much could not proceed returned Home.

£12 Receipts for Mr Browns Forston Plan

£12 8s Reced ½ yrs dividend on £600 in 4 p cents

Pd Gilbert Shoemaker £4 2 9

Paid Edward Chubb £1 5 2

Paid Mrs Martin £5

Pd Mr Dams Shop Bill £11 8 11

Pd Mr Pounceys Bill Sadler £1 3 9

Pd Bo Glazier 12s 4d

Pd Richard Roberts Bill £2

Pd Eleanor’s School Bills £17 15s 6d

Pd Mr Stones Bill

£16 7 9d

Pd Mr Trenchard Do. [no amount shown]

Pd Washing 3s

Pd Thos Cox’s Bill £2 1 5

£6 John Beater a/ what leant

Pd Mr Sprake for Iron Rick Handles £3 7 3

£10 10s Reced ½ yrs Salary Ransom due Mic 1827

Forston House was eventually converted from a private dwelling to the first Dorset County mental asylum in 1832. Martin was not responsible for the internal alterations.

Previously mental ill patients had been sent to the “Madhouse” [their word] at Halstock.

The following account entries are included at the back of the diary where each page is divided into three “monthly abstracts”. These are entered under January and February although the payments and receipts were made in December 1827. His income for the year to this point was £376 3 1d and his expenditure £313 15 11d. With the additional expenditure in this section his expenses reached £397 1 9d. Curiously he includes a payment that he had not yet received in the 1827 accounts to ensure a positive balance of £129 1 4d was carried forward.

Paid 100 Poor rates £1 0 10

Paid Mr Watts of Yeovil for Survey £52 5 6d

Pd Edwards and Dean of Yeovil £2 7 3

Paid Mr St Quintin £5 19 3

Paid Mr Trenchard Bill for Meat £20 15 0

Paid for Cheese at Ransom 18s

£150 Reced 30th April 1828

on Acct of Bincombe Inclosure

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