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John Martin and the Evershot Poor Records

the voice of the poor themselves does not come to our ears” [1]



Setting the Rate

The Poor House


Poor People Travelling in Distress

Setting to work all persons having no means to support themselves.

The long term poor

The new poor law


In fact it is not quite true that the stories of the poor remain silent. The Poor Law Amendment Act systematised the administration of poor relief and in so doing established a set of rules that bound the administrators as much as the inmates of the work house. As the ‘In their own write’ project has confirmed the poor took advantage of this and as a result their voice has become more widely heard. Before the 1834 act it is true that the experiences of the poor were rarely heard except when they were expressed through the writings of those who were most definitely not poor [see The State of Dorset Poor].

Oddly enough, at a local level, these experiences can sometimes be discovered from a surprising source – the accounts books of the Overseers of the Poor. At Evershot two sets of records have survived. The first, from the 18th century, covers a period of eighty four years between 1704 and 1788 whilst the second covers the seventeen years between April 1819 and May 1836. Only the latter of course cover the period of John Martin’s life and although the quality of the earlier records is poor [both technically and in content] they are of some interest and in what follows elements from all the records have been used.

The 18th century records appear to have been written in a simple notebook but the 19th century records were written in a book specifically printed from the purpose by ‘G Clark of Dorchester’. It was not a cheap purchase, we know how much it cost because an entry was made concerning it in the accounts. At 13s [£37 in today’s money] it was an expensive purchase. On the same page we learn that Sarah Pullman received 12s to support herself during her month’s ‘lying-in’ period and John Miller received 14s for a month’s worth of poor relief for his family.

At the beginning of the book were two pages devoted to the duties of the Overseer’s and then began the entries proper. These were arranged by the month in office of the Overseer’s in a complicated manner.

Until the 12th century the secular and religious new year began on Christmas Day. Sometime in the 12th century the Church, and for reasons that doubtless seemed like a good idea, moved it’s new year to the 25th March. Two centuries later the secular world adopted the same policy and so it remained until the reforms of George II in 1753. At that time the civil, ecclesiastical and legal years were all moved to the 1st of January. For dates arising in the first three months of the year, at least until 1753, there was an established custom of writing dates in the form 1st February 17001 indicating the civil and legal year was 1700 and the historical year was 1701.

The date of Easter, being dependent on the date of the spring equinox, meant that by the mid-18th century any calendar that calculated the date based on the Julian calendar was eleven days adrift. In 1754 reforms to the calender resulted in the famous ‘loss’ of eleven days with the result that the 25th March became the 6th April in subsequent years.

One of the ‘years’ that did not change however was the financial year. Prior to the reforms it too ended on the 25th March. After the reforms it too moved ending on the 5th April and commencing on the 6th exactly as it does today. For reasons that are completely unknown however the dates of the Overseers records stayed exactly the same as they had always been, starting on the 26th March and ending on the 25th. The result of this was that although the accounting period that they used was called a month it did not equate to a normal calendar month but rather oddly encompassed two calender months. For example the ‘13th Months Accounts’ in 1820 covered the period 19th February to 22nd March.

At the beginning of each financial year is a section devoted to setting the Poor’s rate, as they often called it, and then each month’s expenditure is recorded across two pages. On the left hand page are what are usually referred to as ‘extra payments’ by the Overseer’s. Emergency payments of one sort or another arose each month  and although expected were unpredictable although it is on this side of the accounts that payments for working on the roads of the parish were recorded.

For some people problems that had arisen urgently were clearly not going to be resolved. A wife, for example, suddenly widowed and without any other source of income needed long term support. After a period on the left hand side of the accounts they would be transferred to the right hand side where many of them remained for years on end. This system presumably allowed them a measure of forward planning that jumbling up the the entries would not have allowed.

Setting the Rate.

The Overseers had;

to raise weekly or otherwise (by Taxation of every Inhabitant, Parson, Vicar and other, and of every Occupier of Lands, Houses, Tithes impropriate, Propriations of Tithes, Coal-Mines, or saleable Underwoods in the said Parish, in such competent Sum and Sums of Money as they shall think fit); And also competent Sums of Money for and towards the necessary Relief of the Lame, Impotent, Old, Blind, and such other among them being Poor, and not able to work”.

Today we are used to the rates [modern day council tax] as being a sum of money that is inflated annually by whatever amount the council wants. In the past setting a rate was somewhat different. In 1704 the Evershot poor rate was set at £1 5s 10 ½ d [approx £1.25p].This figure fluctuated slightly over the years reaching a peak of £1 6s 9 ¾ d in 1788 falling to £1 6s 7 ¾ d in 1819 where it stayed until the records ended in 1836.

By the time it is recorded for the first time, in 1704, this £1 5s 10 ½d  was divided between about 55 [the record is damaged] landowners  each of whom paid a small amount, mostly a 1d or 2d, whilst Mr Strangways paid 5s 6d. How the amount of the rate was decided upon is not known and in the majority of the 18th century records all that is recorded is the total rate that each occupier paid. What we can be sure of is that this total relates to plots of land or houses. Very occassionally , as in 1708 for example some of the lands on which the rate was levied are listed and it is possible to compare them with the 19th century records where the lands on which the rate was levied are invariably listed. Over a period of 128 years the rateable value of the lands that we can compare did not alter at all. As there is a slight difference in the value of the rate between 1704 and 1819 it is presumed that this was due to new land being brought into cultivation. By 1819 the number of rate payers contributing to the rate was reduced to 30 and we must alsopresume that this was due to the consolidation of land holdings amongst fewer landowners.

Even in 1704 £1 5s 10 ½d  would not have gone far and is clearly inadequate to support the poor. Today we are used to the total amount of our council or income tax being raised each year by a certain percentage but this was not the method used in the past. Instead they used a system whereby the base rate, was multiplied by a number of rates to be collected. This number varied from year to year so that the total amount of money raised could be adjusted. Thus in March 1819 the Overseers at Evershot collected two hundred rates totalling £266 9s 4d [2], whilst the following year they collected two hundred rates initially but felt it necessary to collect a further fifty during the year. What this meant in practice was that the rate payer simply multiplied his share of the rate by the number of rates to be collected to give him the amount he had to pay – far easier than trying to work out what 5% of a penny three farthings was for example. Thus in 1821 when 300 rates were raised John Martin, whose share of the base rate was 2 ½ d, had to pay 300 x 2.5 d = 750d =  £3 2s 6d.

Although the base rate of £1 6s 7 ¾ d had changed little in one hundred and twenty years, the number of rates collected increased considerably. In 1704 just twenty rates had been collected, by 1749 fifty rates, by 1786 120 rates and by 1819 two hundred rates. The cost of the poor rate rose accordingly;


Amount Spent


2017 value of Money spent £

The value in 2017of £1 spent in the index year. It can be seen that the value of the £1 fell during the period.


25 17s 4d




65 17 6 ¼d




138 2s 5d




418 2s 3d




334 1 0d



It was this dramatic rise in the cost of poor provision [at a national level] that prompted the amendment of the old poor law in 1834. At first sight it might seem that the poor were not doing too badly. After all even allowing for the approximate halving of the value of the pound between 1749 and 1836 the amount spent had more than doubled. Logically they should have been better off but they weren’t, for the extra money was disbursed amongst a larger number of recipients. In 1749 there were just seven regular recipients of relief whereas in 1836 there were some  twenty eight. 

County rates were raised in a similar fashion and Henry Farr Yeatman, Rector at Stock Gaylard and an important figure in local politics objected to the rise in these. He noted that in many parishes the value of land had increased as a result of inclosure but as no revaluation of the land had been undertaken the rates remained the same. The consequence of this was that those who had not benefited from inclosure were in effect subsidising those who had. The same objection could be raised in relation to the Poor rate and was only resolved with the passage of the Parochial Assessment Act of 1836 which established a uniform system of valuation.

Spending the Rate.

Between 26th March 1821 and 25th March 1822 John Martin and John Chubb served as Overseers of the Poor and the day after the end of their term the vestry at Evershot met and approved the accounts. Over the course of the year they spent precisely £ £425 1s 2 ½ d [£24,407] ; how did they spend it?

The old Poor Law specified who was to receive relief and in what circumstances but aside from a section of the law requiring the parish to maintain a ‘stock,’ on which the poor would work, the law did not restrict how the money was to be spent or where. Indeed as the records show there was remarkable freedom in the way that the money was spent. Between 1819 and 1836 there was some variation in the pattern of expenditure and some expenses dropped out of the accounts that might be expected to recur, but in general there is no evidence that the Overseers at Evershot were parsimonious with their payments. In the next section I will look at the stories of the poor themselves but here I look at some of the general payments that were made.

Each month extends over two pages, on the right hand side are what are referred to in the records as ‘extra payments’. These were predictable in the sense that some extra payments were always expected – it’s just that nobody know what they were going to be.

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb

Mar 31

Fees allowing last years accounts appointing new overseers etc

horse hire & expenses attending with same


7s 6d

Almost the first thing the overseers did each year was to travel to Dorchester to get the previous year’s books and the current year’s rate agreed. Such entries may seem trivial but the costs of administering the Poor Law were not trivial. The sum expended here was the equivalent to two weeks wages for an agricultural labourer. Nor were such costs infrequent; a journey to Dorchester in December 1823, on the appointment of a new constable, cost two weeks wages, another weeks wage was spent in 1835 on the County rate [which the poor did not pay], and almost two weeks in September 1831 went on,

R Guppy Journey to Dorchester with Jury and Lunatic Listes [sic]

Clerks fees sining [sic] do



Administrative costs were thus quite considerable albeit irregular in their occurrence and one of the peculiarities of the accounts is the way recurring payments come and go. In July 1831 the Overseers made a

Journey to Dorchester with population returns


Taking population and preparing returns 30th May


This of course was the annual census and John Martin had made a note in his diary a decade earlier,

The first entries of the year relate to the payment of rent to the local landowners and repairs to the Poor House.

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb

April 5

Mr Wm Jennings for Lord Ilchester 4 years rent for?? to Ldy Day 1820



5 years rent for Ed Chubb to do £12 10 0 deduct sec[on]d poor ins pd on acct £3.8.0

£9 2 0


1 years rent of late Watkins do

£2 10 0

April 5

Samuel Groves thatchers work on the poor house

£5 18 9

J Pullman blacksmiths repairs to the Poor house


The Poor House

In John Martin’s time there were at least seven ‘poor houses’ [3] in Evershot; the tithe map shows them in Summer Lane but these were probably ‘new builds’ [see below]. Although they have the sound of the workhouse about them this was not the case ; they should be regarded instead as social housing, normal houses devoted to and occupied by the poor of the parish.

It is not certain when the first Poor House was built. There are occasional records prior to 1749 relating to house repairs, so for example 7s 6d was given in ‘Thatchers wages’ in 1717 but there is no specific reference to a poor house as such. In 1749 there is an entry, Chargis [sic] on Building ye Poore House” which rather suggests that this was the first such house in the parish. The records then go on to detail various payments. Most are of the form “Pd to Mr X or Y or Z” but some are more specific.

Pd Thos Bradby’s Bill on ye foundation

15s 6d

Pd Farmer Wood for one hundred Road


Pd James Northover for 300 Road


Pd Jn Batter for Lyme on ye Poor House

16s 6d

Pd Will Frampton for Timber

7s 10d

Pd Edward Chubbs Bill 56 foot

£2 2s

Pd for a Oak Lyon [sic] 17 foot & ½

£1 0s 3d

Pd for 2 hundred of bricks


Pd for 5 hundred of watton nails

2s 6d

Pd ### Beal for Loading ye foundation

1s 6d

Pd Rich[ar]d Burbridge for ### ye foundation

1s 6d

Pd Mr Hone for 3 of nails


Pd one hod and a new Hand[d] Barrow

1s 8d

Pd for Tools pails & handles


Pd for a Lock and Key and Staple on Door

1s 6s

Expenses in letting out whole work


Pd Mr Road for Stock to build ye house


Numerous other payments the details of which are vague


£36 8s 8 ¼ d

[£4200 at 2017 values]

It would appear then that more poor houses were built and the proved to be a constant problem.

Aside from the chimneys that needed sweeping the windows needed constant attention, sometimes years after they were broken and there appears to be have been only one toilet [privy] between them all.

July 14th 1819

Sweeping nine poor house chimnies [sic] 4s 6d

February 19th 1822

J May new leading the poor house windows and glazing £2 17s 3d

January 9th 1823

Sweeping poor house chimney 4s

October 2nd 1824

Josias Childs 8 days drawing chalk for poor house privy

October 31st 1824

Josias Childs 2 days digging foundation of poor house privy

January 11th 1825

George Perratt for stones for Poor House privy 5s

February 26th 1826

T Way for repairing windows at Widow Whites [Poor House] blown down by rough wind in 1824 3s

March 23rd 1826

Jn Lake 14 weeks lodging for Michael Burbridge 7s

Also carriage of stone sand Lime &c for building Poor House Privy 22 Nove 1825

March 22nd 1828

Mr Bow for Leading Poorhouse windows 1s 2d

May 20th 1831

Paid Joseph Pullman Blacksmith work at Poor House 3 11 ½ d


There was a constant and justified fear of fire. When manorial courts still held sway there were often permanent rules to forbid the carriage of fire through the parish. With the decline of the manor it fell to the Overseers to remind people of the dangers. On the night before bonfire night in 1822 John Martin ordered,

4th November 1822

R Fountain Crying that there be no fireworks on the 5th November Per Order Mr Martin 1s

Mr Fountain, who had been Overseer in 1819 must have had a loud voice as he also doubled as town crier.

30 July 1825

Farmer Fountain giving notice that all persons will desist from carrying fire in the street that is to say from one house to another it being considered dangerous during this extremely dry weather.

Nov 5th 1825

Crier cautioning all persons against letting off fireworks in the town 1s

Writing out and posting up notice papers about the town respecting bonfires &c 1s

5th November 1831

Thomas Cox crying fireworks 1s

Such precautions were very wise on Friday 8th November 1833 during the small hours a fire broke out in one of the poor houses in Summer lane and spread to the whole row of seven dwellings which were destroyed. The Salisbury and Winchester Journal recounted that the Earl of Ilchester was “speedily on the spot” and “was to be seen repeatedly among the foremost, guiding, with his very own hands, the engine, and animating all to exertion by his own example.” Fortunately nobody was injured but it is likely that extensive rebuilding was necessary afterwards, the poor law records allude to this. The cause of the fire was never found.

7th December 1833

Expenses at the Acorn Inn attending Surveyor respecting the fire at the Poor House 4s 8d

On 23rd August 1845, John Martin “Pd John Chubb for Beer when Mr Wardens Chimney was on Fire 3s 4d”. This must have caused some concern for Martin as his house was next door to Warden’s . He did not come out of it too badly though as a subsequent entry shows.

26th August 1845

11s 4d Reced of Mr Crew Jennings for Beer pd for my me when Mr Wardens Chimney was on Fire

Crew Jennings was agent for the West of England insurance company who paid Martin handsomely for his efforts. In October 1865 another fire broke out and this was much more serious. Fourteen houses, two stables, two slaughter houses, a barn, cowshed and two linhays [open fronted barns] were destroyed and eighteen families became homeless although only one person was slightly injured. Another fire the following year was swiftly dealt with and records the risk of having a lighted candle near soft furnishings.

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb

April 5

J Chubbs horse hire & expenses resptg the Whites settlement

18s 6d

Another major expense relates to the enforcement of the Settlement acts. This is dealt with elsewhere

Poor People travelling in Distress

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb

April 5

Erasmus Cox Jnr in distress


A poor man travelling in distress


It was important that poor relief was not seen as an automatic right. Note the words ‘travelling’ and in ‘distress’ in the entries from April. They are not there by accident. These were keywords that had to be inserted in order to avoid questioning by the Justices. ‘Travelling’ reassured them that the parish was not ignoring the settlement acts when dispensing relief whilst ‘distress’ reassured them that the recipients were ‘deserving’ poor and not just beggars.

February 14th 1820

Poor persons travelling in distress at 7 times 4s 6d

May 10th 1826

Poor man his wife and 5 children in distress on their road to Cerne 1s

May 12th 1827

Two poor women with families travelling in distress 6s

July 4th 1827

Two women with their families

3 sailors travelling in distress 1s 9d

Poor people travelling in distress were very common. Until 1831 such entries were almost monthly and often involved several families. In 1831  there were nine such incidences but thereafter there was a sudden fall with just three cases in 1832, one in 1833 and just one between 1834 and the record’s end in 1836. The amounts allowed such travellers were never more than 6d and one wonders if the payments were made just to move them on and out of the parish. On the other hand they did not stint if occasion demanded.

30 June 1823

Poor man travelling in distress & ill under Dr Case at Acorn for 3 days 6s 6d

Do to carry him to Bridport 1s

Sailors and occasionally soldiers were given relief to get them to their next destinations. This was of course after the end of the Napoleonic wars; it’s difficult to believe that they would have been allowed to undertake their wanderings unsupervised in an earlier era.

January 6th 1823

Two sailors passing on way Bristol to Weymouth 1s

They do seem rather mean in helping a Scottish soldier in 1828 however,

14th March 1828

Pd Scotch Soldier in distress 2d

Next in the records are entries relating to health & bastardy and we will look at some of these cases in the next section. Suffice it to say that this was another potentially expensive area for the parish although at the end of the day the money for the upkeep of the children was recovered from the father.

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb


Dr Hodges attendg Jos Groves at Maiden Newton p u o

inoculating his 5 children with the small pox #### pd by Groves

£1 19 9d


Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb

April 21

Fees examining Elizabeth Frampton on bastardy

horse hire & expenses attendg with her

Erasmus Cox Jnrs. Wife and family a fortnight since his commitment in bastardy



Setting to work all persons having no means to maintain themselves

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb

July 7

Edward Chubb Senr 3 weeks incapable of labor

7s 6d

The Poor rates acted as an insurance against illness not unemployment. For this reason Edward Chubb was listed as ‘incapable’ of labor. In fact he was more severely ill than supposed for he died at the end of July.

The Poor rates acted as an insurance against illness not unemployment. Men and women out of employment had to be found work. In some years [but not others] we find an “Account of Labor distributed among the Occupiers”. This is a list of men who were out of permanent employment but were set to work for the farmers. There is only one list where the details are laid out in full but from this we learn for example that James Barret [sic] went to work for eight different farmers spread over sixty five days between March 21st 1819 and March 25th 1820. He will appear prominently in the next section of our story. In the same period Rich Groves was set to work amongst a further eight farmers for fifty four days. Why this record is found only occasionally is not known.

Most work was done on the roads,

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb

April 21

J Minchenton 24 days on the roads

£1 4 0

Burbridge 24 do


Rob Hoskins 24 do


Jos Hobby 16 ½ do


Jn Hopkins 22 do

14s 8d

Eventually this work would dry up. Between 1819 and 1829 John Minchenton [born 1801] worked on the roads of the parish for 24 days a month. Until December 1826 he received £1 4s when this suddenly and without explanation, was reduced to £1 for the same number of days. In July 1829 he was working with just one other person and equally suddenly the reference to the roads is omitted and from August he received an ‘allowance’. In December 1829 he received just one weeks ‘allowance’ and thereafter there are no references to the roads. He is next to be found in the 1841 census at Benville in the neighbouring parish of Corscombe where he is listed as a farmer. His regular appearance in the lists for such a long time suggests that this was in fact a permanent job and that he was chosen as foreman over the others.

There was one circumstance however where fit individuals were paid for not being able to work and that was the weather. The winter of 1819/1820 was particularly hard and there were several entries in this period

30th December 1819

Charles Childs out of employ in consequence of the severe weather


3rd January 1820

John Warry having been 6 days out of employment in consequence of the weather


10th January 1820

Erasmus Cox Jun out of Employment ditto


22nd January 1820

Joseph Hobby 4 weeks incapable of labor also extra to buy fuel



6th January 1821

Josias Child extra in distress from the severity of the season 1s

The long term poor

On the right hand side of the accounts were the regular payments made to the poor in the parish. They tell us little. At some time or other the people on this side of the accounts started off by receiving payments on the ‘extra payment’s’ or left hand side of the accounts [see above]. It is not known how the decision to move an individual from one side to the other was made. Some people receive ‘extra payments’ for months on end before moving to the left side. In cases of illness we must presume that the decision was made on the likelihood of their recovery.

The amounts paid varied according to the size of the family and the age of the person but were in most cases less than might have been earned if the individual had been in work. As the Dorset labourer was one of the poorest in the country the amounts received must have been inadequate unless supplemented in some other way.

1821 Mar 31 to Apr

Ist Months Accounts 1821 by Jn Martin & Jn Chubb


For 5 weeks unless otherwise stated]

Erasmus Cox, Son wife

£1 17s 6d

John Miller

17s 6d

Will Frampton

12s 6d

Thomas Frampton

12s 6d

John Hopkins Lodg


Mary Roberts ### to her dece[ase]

13s 6d [3 weeks]

Ann Roberts

12s 6d

Margaret Shitler


Ann Daliber


Ann Chamberlain


Hester Groves


Susan Hoskins


Miles Swattridge

5s  [2weeks]

Miles Swattridge

10s [2weeks]


13s 6s [3weeks]

Late Baggs girl

5s [2weeks]

Late Baggs girl

6s [3weeks]

Late Baggs boy


John Whites son [Geo[rge]]

4s [2weeks]


4s 6d [3weeks]

Daniel English & family

8s [2weeks]


9s [3weeks]

John Mills & family


Mary Roberts daug

5s [2weeks]


4s 6d [3weeks]

Mary Swattridges girl

5s [2weeks]


6s [3weeks]

Ann Chamberlains girl

7s 6d

Mary Perratts boy

6s [4weeks]

Ruth Baggs do

7s 6d

Rhoda Colmer do

7s 6d

£15 7s 6d

Extra payments as per other side

£37 17s 6d

£53 5s 1d

Henry Petty

Jn Norman

Edward Chubb

Wm Trenchard

The last six entries were payments to illegitimate children. Reference to them varied according to the Overseers sensibilities. In John Martin’s records they are simply referred to as ‘Mary Perratts boy’, whereas in later records the column to the left is labelled ‘BASTARDS’ and at other times references are made to the father as in e.g. ‘Ann Chamberlains girl by Frampton’.

At the end of the year one final duty remained to be done which was the reconciliation of the accounts. In John Martin’s year as Overseer he had paid out £425 1s 2 ½ d in various disbursements. On the other hand he had inherited a balance of £76 16s 10 ¾ d and had received income in the form of some rents and payments from the fathers of illegitimate children. At the end of 1821 for example they received £7 16s ,

June 12 1821

Cash of Joseph Dodge on acct of his bastard child per Mary Perrat

Payments were received from others, for example John Lake, who paid rent on gravel grounds in the parish and various house rents. In total these payments amounted to nearly £20 but by far the biggest amount, £399 13s 9d, was raised by the 300 rates that had been set. In total then £496 12 10 ½ d had been raised , £425 1s 2 ½ d spent leaving a balance of £71 11s 8d – a balancing of the books which he almost certainly regarded with satisfaction.

These accounts were audited by the incoming Overseer’s and if approved by them were submitted to the Justices of the Peace at Dorchester.

The new poor law

John Martin did not serve another year as Overseer but as Churchwarden would have been intimately concerned with their activities. The final years of the accounts give some inkling of the major changes that were afoot.

27th October 1832

Overseer Journey to Dorchester with Poor Book to be inspected by the Kings Commissioners expenses 6s

8th and 15th December 1832

Two Journeys to Dorchester expenses etc to make return of the value of the parish 15s

26th December 1834

Answers to inquiries different times Poor Law Commissioners making out returns paupers etc 9d

27th July 1835

Journey to Dorchester second time respecting new County rate 7s

28th January 1836

Postage letter respecting new Poor Law 1d

Do Do from Charity Commission 1d

Journey to Cerne to attend Charity Commissioners 5s

11th February 1836

Journey to Beaminster to meet Poor Law Commissioners and writing answers next day to Bridport to various enquiries respecting New Poor Law 7s 6d

2nd April 1836

Journey to Dorchester with Poor Book 7s

Clerks signing do 6s

6th April 1836

To making returns to Poor Law Commissioners making out various items of expenditure &c very long 5s

20th April 1836

Half day with the relieving Officer to take an account of the Paupers 2s 6

John Martin was not however finished with the Poor Law. Under the terms of the Parochial Assessment Act he valued the parish.

3rd June 1836

Mr Martin Valuing the Parish and making New Poor Rate therefrom £15 1s

Accountants salary from 25th March to 18th July 1836 £3 5s

Reference to him was thus the third last entry in the records of the poor under the old act. The last simply says

3rd June 1836

Pd Magistrates Clerks fees when rate signed 5s

In April 1836 Evershot joined with 26 other parishes in the formation of the Beaminster Union under the Poor Law Amendment act. Relief of the poor was in theory moved out of the parish to the workhouse at Beaminster. The work of the Union was overseen by a board of Guardians and in May 1855 John Martin was elected as the Guardian for Evershot. He may have filled this role before but this appears to be the only occasion on which the names of the Guardians were published.


Next          The Overseer of the Poor

Previous   Accounts of the Poor – Evershot in the early 1800’s

1 Hammond JL and Barbara The Village Labourer 1911

2 £1 6s 7 ¾ d × 200 = £266 9s 4d

3 Although they had nine chimneys between them.