Cheswardine Manor

in the County of Shropshire


The History of Cheswardine Hall and Estate from about 1800 to the present day.

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This website covers the History of Cheswardine Estate and the people who lived there from about 1800 to the present time. It is a work in progress and a considerable amount of data has been accumulated which will in time be loaded onto the website. Much of this information relates to the estate of Cheswardine Hall, consisting of the Hall, the various farms making up the Estate, the church dedicated to St Swithun, the villages of Cheswardine, and Soudley, and the hamlets of Chipnall, Goldstone and Ellerton. The boundaries of the parish can be found on this map. This website is currently still in its infancy and will with time grow considerably with information about Cheswardine Hall, the occupants there from about 1820 onwards, and the trials and tribulations affecting the families who lived there. A more specific website about the Township and Manor of Goldstone, which lies to the south west of Cheswardine can be found at this website Goldstone, Shropshire.

The website was last updated on 2nd July 2013

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IN FUTURE, from the 26th October 2008, references to additions to the website will be recorded here, giving details of content and location on the website.

Further information has been added about Dorothy Elizabeth Freemantle, John Donaldson-Hudson's second wife. (September 2012)

Additional data has been added about Michael-Donaldson-Hudson's attendance at school at St Peter's Court, Broadstairs, Kent and also about his prayer & hymn book given to him by his mother on his ninth birthday.

The 1911 Census details were released on Tuesday, 13th January for the first time. The records for Cheswardine Hall and other parts of the locality will appear in due course.

Details of the Executorship and Trusteeship Accounts of Thomas Hudson - please see the link to the report under the short section dealing with Thomas Hudson.

Details of the fire at Marston Road Services, Liverpool on the night of 7th April 1934, and the saving of the Scammell 100 Tonner and John Donaldson-Hudson's Bentley 4.5 litre Tourer. Details of some of the patents applied for by John Donaldson-Hudson have been added.

Details and pictures of the Scammell 100 Tonner, KD 9168 and other low-loaders, have been added on a separate page on 26th November 2008.

Details of the history of Thomas Smallwood and related material have been edited on 26th November 2008.

Details of the Hale family from Walsall, and the Halebrose Estate, added 12th December 2008.

Census 1901 - links to a map showing some of the dwellings, the occupants, their ages, relationships and occupations - this can be found on page 2, below the census details for Cheswardine Hall in 1901.

Details of the memorial to Brooke Hector Smallwood in Cheswardine Church, added on the 29th December 2008.

Details of the Balfour family added on 7th January 2009.

References to Hugh Hudson and Cheswardine Hall added 10th January 2009.

Details of the Hussey family, including two images added 28th January 2009

Reference to the American Civil War 1861 to 1865, and the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.

Details in simpler format of Thomas Hudson's beneficiaries - see link after his death

Details of the Cheswardine Estate Sale in 1918, which took place on the 30th January, including a full copy of the sale catalogue, a copy of the map from the catalogue, and a modern map giving the location of the various lots - added 15th February 2009.

Details about the Cheswardine Estate Sale in 1948, with details of the sale catalogue and a map of locations of the various properties.

Details about the Cheswardine Estate Sale in 1963, with expected details of the sale catalogue and locations of the various farms.

Details about the sale of several properties and parcels of land by Amey Gravel Ltd, on 29th March 1972, formerly parts of the Cheswardine Estate. These included Goldstone Stud Farm, Heywood Lane Farm and The Woodlands, Goldstone.

Location map link of the homes of Muriel Donaldson-Hudson after the death of her husband Ralph.

Information about the role of John Donaldson-Hudson as a director of John Logie Baird Ltd from late 1944 - see page 2 of the website and Jane Carr.

A small amount of information has been added about Dorothy Henrietta Brunstrom the first wife of John Donaldson-Hudson, whose stage name was Jane Carr.

The visit of Doris Donaldson-Hudson, Miss Grave and lady Magdalen Lucy Herbert to New Zealand in 1891/1892.

Sale of Part of the Estate of Lord Shrewsbury on 23 July 1863. A copy of the sale catalogue has been located, and when time allows details will be added to this website. Much of that estate was purchased by the Donaldson-Hudson family.

Site map of current pages on this website

Details of the Jervis family, to include details of the will of Richard Jervis, the grandson of Griffith Jervis, who passed on his estate to his nephew Henry Zachariah Jervis (1). Information is also included about his son Captain Henry Jervis and his grandson, Henry Zachariah Jervis (2).

Transcriptions of the wills of Henry Jervis Junior (1671 to 1749),  Richard Jervis of Broadwell (1704 to 1784) and Henry Zachariah Jervis (1) have been added on February 3rd 2010.

Information about the Wilby and Biglands families who were involved with the wine trade in Oporto, Portugal with Thomas Hudson and Thomas Donaldson.

Military records of Ralph Charles Donaldson-Hudson from the National Archives.

Details of the History of Adbaston by J  Somner Billington, published in 1982

Further details about the bankruptcy of Anthony & Richard Halliley in 1847 added 1st September 2010.

Further information about Jane Carr and also Noel Coward, regarding the Festival of Britain in 1951, added on 28th October 2010.

Links to two short British Pathe Ltd newsreels about the low-loader KD9168 have been added on the 24th July 2011.

Information about Sanford Bruce Fleming, a Flying Officer in the Royal Canadian Air Force, who had a brief marriage with Dorothy Elizabeth Freemantle.

A number of photographs of Ralph Charles Donaldson-Hudson and his daughter Ruth were added on the 2nd July 2013

Page 2

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CHESWARDINE is situated in the north east of Shropshire, a rural county in England.  The parish can be found about 4 miles south west of Market Drayton, and about 157 miles north west of London. The population of Cheswardine is approximately 1000 in total, most of whom live within the village, although the remainder of the population live in the townships of Chipnall, Great Soudley, Little Soudley, Ellerton and Goldstone.Google Map of location

Ruth Donaldson-Hudson published a definitive history of the parish in her book “An Historical Survey of the Parish of Cheswardine” published by Wilding, Shrewsbury in a limited edition in 1939. 

Ruth Donaldson-Hudson

More recently, Bernard Lazarus, the former headmaster of Cheswardine primary School, has published some stories about village life “Country Reflections around Cheswardine”. However neither of these books deal in any depth with the period from about 1800 onwards.

The Cheswardine Estate, then known as The Hill, Chipnall, was owned by the Jervis family who were unfortunately forced to sell the property because of a family dispute.Henry Zachariah Jervis (I) was born circa 1739 and married Sarah Pigot on 12th February 1774, when he was 35 and she was 24 at St Luke’s parish church, Hodnet, which is about 5½ miles south west of Market Drayton and 15 miles north east of Shrewsbury.  With careful management, Henry Zachariah Jervis (I) had brought together a large estate at Cheswardine. Sarah gave birth to three children, Henry, in December 1774, Emma, born November 1782, who died under 3 months of age in 1783, and Anne Emma, born November 1786. Before his death in 1821, Henry Zachariah Jervis (I) had become involved in a complicated chancery dispute with his son, now Captain Henry Jervis. It would appear that unlike his father, Henry was considerably less honest. (As was his own son, Henry Zachariah Jervis (II), who although being a qualified lawyer, appeared in court on a number of occasions as the defendant in cases of dishonesty.) Henry Zachariah Jervis (I) left a lengthy will which made clear the circumstances under which Captain Henry Jervis would benefit from the will. Eventually, Captain Henry Jervis put the Estate on the market. Please see this link for further information on the Jervis family.

Thomas Smallwood, living at Hales Hall, attempted to buy the estate, but was unable to raise the necessary capital. He was a banker in Market Drayton, christened on the 4th June 1769 at Ranton, Staffordshire, who married Maria Hector in Forton Parish church, just outside Newport, Shropshire on the 14th May 1807 when he was aged about 37 years old and she was  aged about 26 years old. From this union were born seven children, all of them baptised in Market Drayton between 1808 and 1818, one of them being Brooke Hector Smallwood. He became an attorney, living at Smallwood Lodge in Upper Bar, Newport, Shropshire, for part of his life, and somewhat of a character, being known for representing lost causes. He died in 1890, being the last member of his family, and his cast bronze memorial is to be found on the west wall of the north aisle in St Swithun’s church in Cheswardine. The memorial was erected in 1939 and paid for by Mrs Mabel Fanny Mary Nevett (the second wife of Brooke Robinson, solicitor and M.P. for Dudley) and Mr William George Darby a solicitor's employee, both of whom were trustees of the late Brooke Robinson). His father was at one time patron of Cheswardine church. (patronage information) Unfortunately Thomas Smallwood could not complete the purchase of The Hill, Chipnall, and so it came back on to the market.


Eventually, The Hill, Chipnall, was purchased in 1833 by Thomas Hudson(2), (When King William IV was still on the throne) who came from the Wigton area of Cumberland, which is about 11½ miles south west of Carlisle, at that time in the County of Cumberland. He was a landowner in Wigton, and a proprietor of the East India Company, meaning he was a shareholder. He was almost certainly involved in what was known as ‘the Portuguese trade’ meaning the owning of estates in Portugal and Madeira, for the production of port and madeira, which were then imported into the United Kingdom. He was the fifth of five children, born on the 18th October 1772 eight years after his eldest brother Robert Hudson. He was christened in Wigton on the 13th November 1772, his father Thomas Hudson (1) being at that time a shopkeeper in Wigton, whilst his mother was Ann Frances Dodgson who was christened in Wigton on the 9th May 1744, she dying evidently in 1831.

pedigree chart prepared by Ruth Donaldson-Hudson details many of the names which will subsequently appear in this website. This pedigree is a very large file, being more than 7Mb in size, as the original pedigree is 850 x 600mms in size. Once loaded it can be navigated quite easily. As far as I can tell, however, there is a major error in the descendancy of Thomas Hudson (2). His father's birth year is given as 1766, which is only six years before Thomas Hudson (2) was born himself. Extensive enquiries have been made to establish the true descendancy, but as of the date recorded at the bottom of this page, nothing has been clarified. Recent information has come to light, from the 4 x great niece of Joseph Hudson D.D (1719 to  1811) shown on the pedigree, that confirms that Ruth Donaldson-Hudson's pedigree contains errors of descendancy.

Thomas Hudson (2) was 46 years old when he married Frances Bamford Hesketh (aged 28) on the 27th July 1819 at St Oswald’s church in Chester. He was already in his fifties when he purchased The Hill in about 1833. The house was incomplete, so he lived temporarily at Chipnall Mill (Farm?), which is about 1¼ miles north east of Cheswardine, being one of the tenanted farms on the estate. The remains of the mill are still present down by the stream, and it is not certain if this was still extant at the time. In the 1841 census, Thomas Hudson(2) was resident at Chipnall Mill, aged apparently 65 years old, though in reality he was probably 69 years old. At the time, his wife Frances, was resident at 6 Park Crescent, Marylebone, London, their in-town residence.

Thomas Hudson(2) died on the 1st April 1852 at 6 Park Crescent, Marylebone, leaving a very large fortune, which he had estimated three months before his death to be £457,684~16s~11d. Due to irregularities in the management of his accounts after his death, involving Mr John Donaldson as an individual, and John and Henry Donaldson trading as H & J Donaldson, Wine Merchants, Mark Lane, London, an impartial accountancy partnership had to be called in to sort financial matters out. Details of Thomas Hudson's (2) beneficiaries can be found here.

If we attempt to revalue Mr Hudson's assets in modern terms, the least amount that he would be worth is £37,987,140.98 - meaning the value of his assets would be worth almost 83 times its value in 1852. (In current terms this would put him just outside the 2000 wealthiest people in the UK in 2008.) The full text of the report by the solicitors Gray and Prideaux, dated the 21st December 1861 is available.

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MURDER MOST FOUL

An unfortunate murder occurred at Chipnall Mill in the winter of 1837-38. Ann Wycherley, a resident of the workhouse in Market Drayton, was the mother of two small children,  aged about 2 & 4 years old. Ann  evidently accompanied by her lover, began walking from Market Drayton towards Cheswardine in December 1837 from the Market Drayton workhouse. The weather would have been cold, the roads would have born little resemblance to today's tarmacadam surfaces, all of them would have probably been poorly clothed and their footwear would have been unsatisfactory, or non-existant in the case of the two children. When they reached the mill pool at Chipnall Mill, Ann threw her youngest child into the pool, and then either alone, or with the assistance of her un-named lover they stoned the child, resulting in her death. The child was found a few days later, and Ann Wycherley was apprehended at Baldwins Gate, on the way to what is now Stoke-upon-Trent. At the subsequent trial she was found guilty of murder, though it is not known if her lover gave evidence against her, or escaped the scene of the crime. On May 5th 1838, Ann Wycherley, then aged 28 years old was hanged at Stafford gaol, and her body was buried within the grounds of the gaol. It is highly likely that Thomas Hudson was resident at Chipnall Mill at the time of this murder, and may therefore have been involved in the subsequent search and arrest of Ann Wycherley at Baldwins Gate, which is only about 8 miles as the crow flies north east from Chipnall Mill, but which would have been difficult terrain for a young mother and child to have walked across. Further information about hangings at Stafford can be found here.

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Alexander Donaldson, the first son of Robert Donaldson and Mary Hope, from Langholm, in Dumfriesshire, was born in Wigton on Boxing Day 1760, although no record of his christening has been found. His three sisters were all christened in Langholm, which is about 31 miles north of Wigton, Ann, on 7th April 1751, Elizabeth, on 23rd March 1755 and Mary on 23rd January 1757, so it would appear that the family moved to Wigton between 1757 and 1760. Alexander became a watch and clockmaker and earned his living in Wigton. He is described in the book “The Clockmakers of Cumberland” by John B Penfold, as a “remarkable man who managed to combine successfully the trades of brewer and clockmaker”. (More detail to come)

Alexander Donaldson married Elizabeth (Betty) Hudson, the sister of Thomas Hudson(2), on the 10th September 1787, in Aikton, which is about 4¼ miles north north east of Wigton. Alexander was 27 years old and Elizabeth was 23 years old. Alexander and Elizabeth had eight children, all of whom were probably born in Wigton:-

  • Thomas Donaldson (1), born 29th December 1788, became a wine merchant in London, almost certainly with his Uncle Thomas Hudson(1)  and a third gentleman, George Biglands, who was also from the Wigton area. The business was called as far as can be ascertained “Thomas Hudson, Donaldson & Co.”
  • Elizabeth Donaldson, was born circa 1789, and evidently died when only eight years old in July 1797 at Wigton.
  • Robert Donaldson, born 7th May 1791, was also involved in the wine trade, almost certainly with his Uncle Thomas Hudson (1), managing the vineyards in Madeira. He married Alice Jordison before 1844 and had two children, Christopher Donaldson and Charles Donaldson(3).       
  • Charles Donaldson(1), who was born on the 30th July 1794 in Wigton, was also a vintner, or wine merchant. In the census of 1851, he was living at 13 Glengall Grove, Lambeth, off the Old Kent Road in London. His wife was  Sarah Aldridge, who was born in Titchfield, Hampshire in about 1806. When they married on March 5th 1853, he was living at 8 Sykes Terrace, London. “The Times” reported his death on the 29th April 1861, “ On the 25th inst., at 13 Glengall Grove, Old Kent Road, late of Mark Lane, City, after a protracted and painful illness, aged 66, leaving a sorrowing widow to lament her loss.” His death was attributed to Morbus Parighitii for 18 months. (meaning unknown) decessit sin prole.    
  • Ann Donaldson (I) was born on the 15th April 1797 and her short life ended on the 13th June 1799, being buried four days later in Wigton.
  • Ann Donaldson (II) was born on the 14th November 1800 and she was dead by the time she was 8½ years old on the 1st May 1809.
  • John Donaldson was born in 1803, being christened on the 18th November 1803 in Wigton. He became a brewer, like his father, though he did not inherit his father's love of clocks and watches. He married Catherine Halliley  (1813 - 1905), whose family were calico printers in the town of Wigton, on the 10th December 1835. The brewery was in Water Street, Wigton.
  • Henry Donaldson was the final child to be born, in 1808. In the 1851 census he was recorded as being a wine merchant in Picadilly, London. He was never married and died in about 1858, decessit sin prole.

Alexander Donaldson died on the 27th April 1819 at Wigton, and was buried there. His will, dated the 13th march 1819 read as follows:-
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Dear Uncle(1) and Dear Brother Thomas(2) At my father’s request I make out this memorandum to settle his affairs as there mentioned that is to say he leaves to his wife all the capital that stands due to him in the brewery books and all the Treasury Notes that is lent out upon interest and all the furniture that she possessed with till my brother Harry(3) be at age and after that his sone had privee to draw half of the capital share and share alike and then after my mother’s decease what remains goes equally divided amongst us he appoints Mr Hudson and your brother and my mother executrix to pay all of the funeral expenses or any other that comes against it – Alex Donaldson. Also I leave to my brother Robert(4) the house that he occupies during his life at Langholm. This I declare to be my last will and testament being sound in mind before these witnesses dated this 13th day of March 1819 – Alex Donaldson Witnesses Baylum Wilson(5)
, George Brown(6), Joseph Biglands(7)
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Effects under £1000 Proved by Elizabeth Donaldson 26th March 1826.

1. Thomas Hudson (1772-1852)
2. Thomas Donaldson (1788-1837)
3. Henry (Harry) Donaldson (1808-1858)
4. Robert Donaldson (1761-1835)
5. Baylum Wilson – unknown
6. George Brown – unknown
7. Joseph Biglands (cir 1755 – cir 1820) father of George Biglands, partner in the Oporto wine partnership with Thomas Hudson and Thomas Donaldson

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Catherine Halliley's grandfather Richard Halliley was born circa 1736 and resided at Lumby Hall, Sherbourne near South Milford, Yorkshire, about 14 miles east of Leeds. He died circa 1775. Richard married Sarah Warner at Garforth, about 7 miles WNW of Lumby Hall, on the 31st October 1768, when he was 32 and she was 21 years old. Their son Anthony Halliley, the father of Catherine, was born at Lumby Hall on the 28th March 1771. Anthony married Anne Carrick from Stanwix, Carlisle on the 2nd September 1798 when she was 17 years old. He was first recorded as a calico printer in Wigton in 1808 and again in the Census in 1841, then aged evidently 65,  living with his wife Anne (aged 60) and two of his daughters, Mary aged 35 and Sarah aged 20 at Burnfoot, Wigton, his occupation being described as a calico printer. On the night of that census, Sunday 6th June 1841, also resident in their household was Ann Donaldson, then aged 3, the second child of John Donaldson and Catherine Halliley. Calico printing was not without its difficulties and on the 20th February 1847, Anthony Halliley and his son Richard Halliley were declared bankrupt by Nathaniel Ellison, her majesty's Commissioner of the Newcastle-upon-Tyne District Court of Bankruptcy. In 1848, Richard Halliley emigrated to Australia, with his daughter, Frances Elizabeth Halliley, her mother having died in 1830, probably as a consequence of childbirth.

John and Catherine Donaldson  had four children

  • Thomas Donaldson(2) was born on the 26th December 1836 in Wigton, and also christened there on the  5th September 1837. Although he was the eldest son, he was not chosen to inherit the estate of his great uncle Thomas Hudson(2), causing him a considerable amount of youthful grief.
  • Anne Donaldson was born in 1838, being christened on the 2nd November in Wigton
  • Charles Donaldson(2) (later to become Charles Donaldson-Hudson) was born on the12th February 1840, at Water Street Brewery, Wigton, being baptised in Wigton on the 24th June 1840.
  • Catherine Elizabeth Donaldson, was born in Crescent Road, Islington in the early part of 1851, being recorded as three months old at the time of the 1851 census.

Catherine Donaldson (nee Halliley) lived to a ripe old age, and lived with her daughter Annie and son-in-law Robert Dymond, who were married on the 20th February 1862, at St James Church, Westminster.  After Charles inherited the Cheswardine Estate from his great uncle Thomas Hudson, she lived with the Dymonds at Brooklands House, North Street, Charminster, Dorset. She eventually died there on 28th November 1905, but she was buried in the graveyard at Cheswardine, in a single plot on the left hand side of the path leading from the small door in the north aisle to the Donaldson-Hudson plot adjacent to drive to the Old Hall (North Part). When the church was restored in 1899, she honoured her husband John and her son Thomas with a brass plaque which can be found to the left of the main altar.

 

This reads:- In honour of God and in memory of her husband and son buried near to this building Catherine Donaldson arranged the placing of the painted panels in the choir 1889.

Thomas Donaldson(2) "appears to have been a dashing and rather wild young man, devoted to horses and hunting, and at an early age rather too fond of racing for his father's liking. He is the hero of an escapade that is supposed to have lost him his inheritance. He was staying once at Cheswardine with Uncle and Aunt Hudson; he was then about sixteen and full of high spirits.  One afternoon, Uncle Hudson, standing at the library window, is horrified to see his elder great-nephew Tom riding a pig back and forth over the flower beds below the house. A shrewd and careful, as well as prosperous, business man was Thomas Hudson, and there and then he is supposed to have decided that this young and irresponsible scapegrace Tom was no fit person to inherit his wealth and that Charlie, the younger brother, should be the heir.
   I have heard my Grandmother Balfour (sister to Tom & Charlie) declare the great Pig-Riding episode had nothing to with the choice of Charlie as the heir. According to her, Charlie was a very delicate little boy, he never went to school until he was twelve, (1852?) but with his sister Annie (next in age above him) spent most of his early years with Uncle and Aunt Hudson. They were a childless couple and Charlie became as a son to them. The more boisterous Tom, though he would often go to Cheswardine during his holidays, they never knew so well. So what was more natural, said Granny Balfour, than that Uncle Hudson should leave the property to the great-nephew whom he knew so well and to whom he and his wife were so attached?
   There is a certain amount of truth, probably, in what Granny Balfour said; but do not let us leave the Pig Ride entirely out of account!

From letters written in Sept. 1852 we know that Tom, aged 16, was then being educated by Mr. Hutchins, near Stroud in Gloucestershire, where Charlie (aged 12) joined him about that time. In 1855 both brothers were being tutored by a Mr. Kensit at Betchworth Vicarage, Surrey. A Mr. Gibson, writing to Tom in 1859, refers, however, to Rugby School and more than once.  It is difficult to fit Rugby into the chronological picture, but the likeliest explanation is that he was there for only a short time, before going to Mr. Hutchins, whose establishment was probably more of a crammer's than an ordinary school. Later Tom went up to Magdalen College, Oxford (while Charlie, in due course, went to Merton College).
   One thing emerges - that Tom was no scholar: he was often taken to task about his handwriting, and he was weak in Arithmetic! Before 1859 he appears to have joined a regiment of Rifles, perhaps a Militia or Volunteer formation. Then we find his father's old friend, Henry Gibson, using his influence to help Tom to obtain a commission in a Cavalry Regiment, "without the bother of the usual examinations". This was achieved through the good offices of "an Old General" with whom Mr. Gibson was well acquainted, Tom duly obtaining a Cornetcy in the 3rd. Dragoons alias 3rd. Kings Own Hussars, at the age of  23. 

In 1867 Tom was a Captain and his regiment was quartered at Hounslow. One Saturday evening he was riding home on his favourite charger, after being on duty at the Barracks. After he had parted company with one or two brother officers, "his horse became very restive and unmanageable; it reared up, the poor Captain fell backwards and fractured his skull, dying within a few hours of the accident. The regiment subscribed to a stained glass memorial window, which is in the chapel of Cheswardine Church.   Captain Thomas Donaldson married Louisa Helen Elizabeth KIRWAN, one of three beautiful Irish sisters, in 1860. His regiment was serving in Ireland when he joined it in 1859, and from Ireland brought back not only a wife, but also a magnificent specimen of head and antlers of the extinct Irish elk. This fossil, which in Ruth D-H’s time hung first in the dining room and later in the smoking-room at Cheswardine, was discovered in a peat bog on the Kirwan family estate." (from Ruth D-H's Family of Donaldson)          

He attended Rugby School from February 1849, and was resident there on the 30th March 1851 when the census took place. In 1857 he is recorded as being at Magdalen Hall, Oxford. His military service began in 1859 in the 3rd Light Dragoons, becoming Hussars during a tour of duty in Ireland. On the 2nd September 1862, he became  a Lieutenant (by purchase) and in April 1863, his company was transferred to Glasgow, and then in 1864 the company moved to Manchester. 

This cartes-de-visite was almost certainly taken by White in Glasgow between April 1863 and mid-1864

On the 1st September 1865 he was raised to the rank of Captain in the 3rd King's Own Hussars. Thomas Donaldson attended a regimental dinner at the Albion Tavern, Aldersgate Street, London on the 20th May 1867. A few weeks later, probably at a military display at Wormwood Scrubs on the 25th June 1867, he had the misfortune to fall from his horse and unfortunately it rolled on him and he was mortally wounded. A brass plaque memorial records the details of his untimely death on the north wall of the Lady Chapel in St Swithun's Church, Cheswardine, and also the members of his regiment subscribed to the memorial window in his honour in the church. Thomas Donaldson married Louisa Helen Elizabeth Kirwan aged 20 years old on the 12th September 1860 in Dublin, Ireland and she gave birth to one girl Helen Louise Donaldson, and three boys, Walter Kirwan Donaldson, Gerald Kirwan Donaldson and Thomas Reginald Kirwan Donaldson

This cartes-de-visite shows Mrs Thomas Donaldson (nee Kirwan) with her youngest child Thomas Reginald Kirwan Donaldson aged less than one year old, who was born on 17th August 1867, about a month after his father died.

Further information about Thomas can be found on this link.(Add information)

Charles Donaldson(2) was living with his great uncle Thomas Hudson(2) and great aunt Frances Hesketh Hudson at 6 Park Crescent East, Marylebone, London at the time of the census in 1851, when he was aged 11. Also present was his sister Anne Donaldson, then aged about 13 years. However elder brother Thomas was not present as he was recorded as being at Rugby School. According to Ruth Donaldson-Hudson's record of the Donaldsons and referring to Charles "As a small boy he was reputedly very delicate and he never went to school. Charlie at the age of twelve joined his elder brother at Mr Hutchins' tutorial establishment near Stroud; and two years later both boys were with a Mr Kensit at Betchworth Vicarage. Thence, in due course, Charlie went up to Merton College, Oxford. (June 1860) 


This photograph of Charles Donaldson was provided by Merton College, Oxford and dates from 1860.

Uncle Hudson died in 1852 and it was not until nine years later, in 1861, that Charlie came of age and succeeded to the property. It was then that he assumed the additional name and arms of Hudson; henceforth he was Charles Donaldson-Hudson.   Under Thomas Hudson's will Charlie was only a tenant for life, the estate being settled on an unborn life, namely Charlie's son. Failing any sons being born to C.D-H., it was to go to his nephews, Tom's boys. The estate was vested in Trustees therefore, and in 1872 there was only one, a Mr Bennett of Lincoln's Inn. Mr Bennett apparently resigned about this time, and two more trustees were appointed in his place - Mr., (afterwards Sir), Reginald Cust (a brother of Barley's stepfather) and the Hon. George Kenyon (younger son of the 3rd Lord Kenyon and great-uncle of the present baron). Judging from old letters, there seems to have been complete mutual confidence between the Trustees on the one hand and my grandfather on the other. He could afford to spend liberally, but he was by no means extravagant and he laid out his money wisely and well. (from Ruth D-H's Family of Donaldson)

Around this time, Charles enlisted in the 3rd Staffordshire Militia and shown below is a picture of him with a group of colleagues. Charles Donaldson had not by this time changed his name to Donaldson-Hudson, and his name appears recorded on the back of the photograph as Charles Donaldson.

Charles is sitting on the left hand side front row, with his hands clasped on his right knee. I have the impression that this group might have been the "Dads Army" of the 1860's, enjoying playing at being soldiers rather than actually defending Great Britain

At the 1861 census, Charles was recorded as an unmarried landowner living at Cheswardine Hall, with his mother Catherine and sister Anne also present. 

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For comparative purposes the following information relates to current world events. On 12th April 1861, the first battle of the American Civil War began, when Confederate forces (from the slave employing states of the south) attacked a U.S. military installation at Fort Sumter in South Carolina. 

Confederate resistance collapsed after General Robert E Lee surrendered to General Ulysses Grant on April 9, 1865. 

On April 14th 1865, Abraham Lincoln, the president of the United States of America was assassinated

The American Civil War was the deadliest war in  American history, causing 620,000 soldier deaths and an undetermined number of civilian casualties. Slavery in the United States was ended, the Union of states was restored, and the federal government was strengthened. The social, political, economic and racial issues of the war decisively shaped the reconstruction era that lasted until 1877, and continue into the 21st century.

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By Royal Licence dated the 30th January 1862, Charles changed his surname to Donaldson-Hudson, (College of Arms manuscript 160/388) and also inherited the Cheswardine Estate. Letters patent from the College of Arms were dated the 10th March 1862 (Grants 54.238)

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Letters Patent

This is an open letter (from the Latin patere = to open) addressed "To All and Singular to whom these Presents shall Come". Armorial bearings are granted by means of Letters Patent.

The text of Letters Patent is generally executed in copper plate or foundation hand by a skilled calligrapher, with the initial letters "TO" being illuminated, ie drawn larger than the rest of the text and embellished with various ornaments. Patents of arms contain other elements, such as the arms of the Earl Marshal, the Sovereign and the College of Arms as well as a painting of the arms being granted.

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Shown below is a modern interpretation of the Armorial bearings awarded to Charles Donaldson-Hudson in 1862. They have been prepared by Martin Goldstraw of Cheshire Heraldry

The original armorial bearings as appearing in Burkes' Armory are not coloured and are shown here.

They are of course similar, but the modern version lacks a degree of finesse of the original.

On the 23rd July 1863, the 18th Earl of Shrewsbury and 3rd Earl Talbot, Henry John Chetwynd-Talbot auctioned 23 lots of property in the Cheswardine area according to this report that appeared in the local paper.

 

In old type faces the £ symbol did not occur and the usual means of indicating pounds was the use of an 'l' after the amount in pounds. Hence the figures shown in the above newspaper cutting are £35,211.00 and £359 7s 0d. The current value of this property according to the "Measuring Worth"  website would be between £2.4 million and £3.3 million pounds

Charles Donaldson (2) married Sara Marie ("Barley") Streatfeild on the 10th February 1870 at Ellesmere, Shropshire, when she was 19 years old, the younger daughter of Major Sydney Robert Streatfeild and Sara Jane Cookson. Sara Marie Streatfeild was born on 19th September 1850, the youngest of a family of three boys and two girls.

Sara Marie Streatfeild ("Barley")

Around this time, Charles Donaldson-Hudson was the unfortunate victim of a petty crime that occurred whilst he was staying in the  Grosvenor Hotel in London, as recorded in The Times, on the 24th May 1870.

On the 3rd April 1871, Charles and Sara were recorded for the 1871 census at his London address at 35 Grosvenor Place, Knightsbridge, London, he as being a magistrate, with  a total of eight servants present, the day before their first child Kathleen Marie Donaldson-Hudson was born on the 4th April. However by the 20th October 1872, when his second daughter was born, he was living at 4 Buckingham Gate, London.

In 1872, St Swithun's church in Cheswardine having fallen into a state of disrepair, it was decided to make plans for a new church, to replace the poorly built restoration from 1810. The initial scheme for reseating with restoration was submitted by the architect Charles Buckeridge of Oxford (c 1832 to 1873) but was rejected by the Lichfield Diocese. However a second scheme, submitted in 1884 by John Loughborough Pearson of London (1817 to 1897) was approved by the Diocese. Charles Donaldson-Hudson was responsible for the majority of the financing of this project, although his wife brought the project to fruition due the continuing decline in Charles Donaldson-Hudson's health. The rebuilt church was re-dedicated in 1889.

HOMES OF CHARLES DONALDSON-HUDSON in LONDON  This takes you to a Google map of London.


This history continues on page 2