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Stafford (STS)


  1. The majority of parishes came under (A) the Consistory Court of Lichfield. This court should always be searched even thought a place in Stafford may have come under peculiar jurisdiction. The Lichfield Peculiars are listed below.
  2. Most of the courts exercising peculiar jurisdiction were consolidated under (B) the Lichfield Peculiars. The exceptions were (C) three manorial courts.
Place Court
Acton Trussell Prebendal of Whittington and Baswich (B)
Adbaston Dean of Lichfield (B)
Alrewas Prebendal of Alrewas and Weeford (B)
Armitage Prebendal of Hansacre and Armitage (B)
Balterley Consistory of Chester (see Chester)
Baswich Prebendal of Whittington and Baswich (B)
Bednall see Acton Trussell
Bentley see Wolverhampton
Bilbrook see Tettenhall
Bilston see Wolverhampton
Blithbury Prebendal of Alrewas and Weeford (B)
Branston Manor of Burton-upon-Trent (B)
Brewood Dean of Lichfield (B)
Bromley Regis see Kings Bromley
Broughton see Eccleshall
Brownhills Prebendal of Hansacre and Armitage (B)
Burton-upon-Trent Manor of Burton-upon-Trent (B)
Bushbury Royal Peculiar of Woverhampton (B)
Cannock Dean and Chapter of Lichfield (B)
Chapel Chorlton Prebendal of Eccleshall (B)
Charnes Prebendal of Eccleshall (B)
Chorlton see Chapel Chorlton
Codsall Royal Peculiar of Tettenhall (B)
Colwich Prebendal of Colwich (B)
Congreve see Penkridge
Coppenhall see Penkridge
Cotes see Eccleshall
Drayton-in-Hales see Market Drayton
Dunston see Penkridge
Eccleshall Prebendal of Eccleshall (B)
Edingale Prebendal of Alrewas and Weeford (B)
Farewell Dean and Chapter of Lichfield (B)
Fradley see Alrewas
Fradswell Prebendal of Colwich (B)
Gnosall Manor of Gnosall (B)
Hammerwich Dean of Lichfield (B)
Handsacre Prebendal of Hansacre and Armitage (B)
Harborne Dean and Chapter of Lichfield (B)
Haselor see Lichfield
Hatherton see Wolverhampton
High Offley Prebendal of High Offley and Flixton (B)
Hilton see Wolverhampton
Hints see Handsacre
Horninglow see Burton-upon-Trent
Kings Bromley Prebendal of Alrewas and Weeford (B)
Kinvaston see Wolverhampton
Lichfield Dean of Lichfield (B)
Longdon Prebendal of Longdon (B)
Lovedale see Penkridge
Market Drayton Manor of Tyrley (C)
Mavesyn Ridware Dean of Lichfield (B)
Norton Canes see Handsacre
Ogley Hay see Handsacre
Oken see Tettenhall
Packington see Weeford
Pattingham Manor of Pattingham (C)
Pelsall Royal Peculiar of Wolverhampton (B)
Penkridge Royal Peculair of Penkridge (B)
Pipe Ridware Dean of Lichfield (B)
Pirton see Tettenhall
Rodbaston see Penkridge
Rugeley Dean and Chapter of Lichfield (B)
Saredon see Shareshill
Sedgley Manor of Sedgley (C)
Shareshill Royal Peculiar of Wolverhampton (B)
Slindon see Eccleshall
Smethwick see Harborne
Stafford, St. Chad Prebendal of Prees or Pipe Minor (B)
Streethay see Lichfield
Stretton in Burton see Burton-upon-Trent
Stretton in Penkridge see Penkridge
Sugnall see Eccleshall
Swinfen see Weeford
Tettenhall Royal Peculiar of Tettenhall (B)
Tipton Prebendal of Prees or Pipe Minor (B)
Trescott see Tettenhall
Tyrley Manor of Tyrley (C)
Upper Arley Dean and Chapter of Lichfield (B)
Wall see Lichfield
Walton see Baswich
Walton see Eccleshall
Water Eaton see Penkridge
Wednesfield Royal Peculiar of Wolverhampton (B)
Weeford Prebendal of Alrewas and Weeford (B)
Whittington Prebendal of Whittington and Baswich (B)
Willenhall see Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton Royal Peculiar of Woverhampton (B)
Wrottesley see Tettenhall
Wyrley see Norton Canes
Yoxall Manor of Burton-upon-Trent (B)

Decision Table

For those who lived in (A) the Consistory of Lichfield, search:

  1. Consistory Court of Lichfield
  2. Prerogative Court of Canterbury (see London: PCC)
  3. Court of Arches, 1660- (see London: Arches)
  4. Court of Delegates, 1636- (see London: Delegates)

For those who lived in (B) the Lichfield Peculiars, search:

  1. the combined index for Lichfield peculiar courts.
  2. Then search as in (A) above.

For those who lived in (C) the three manorial courts, search:

  1. the respective manorial court.
  2. Then search as in (A) above.

For those who lived anywhere in the county between 1653-1660, search:

  1. Prerogative Court of Canterbury (see London: PCC)

For those who lived anywhere in the county between 1812-1857, regardless of what is found in the probate records of any of the above courts, consider searching also the estate duty registers. (see London: Estate Duty)

Printed/Microfilmed Probate Records for the Consistory of Lichfield

The Original Wills, Registered Copy Wills, and the Act Books for the Consistory of Lichfield have all been microfilmed. There are only 6 volumes of Registered Copy Wills: Volume 1 for 1516-1526, Volume 2 for 1527-1540, Volume A for 1662-1679, Volume B for 1679-1695, Volume C for 1697-1718, and Volume D for 1717-1771. The Lichfield Record Office adds that these volumes may actually be "proceedings over which a court case developed."

The collection of Original Wills includes Administrations and Inventories. This collection starts in 1526. To see the entire collection of microfilms, type film number 95280 into the FHL catalog. Start your research with the following indexes:

  1. 1516-1652, (FHL 942 B4b) and (BYU CS 434 .B7), volume 7
    This is volume 7 of the Index Library series (BRS) that was published in 1892. It is a useful item to search for both the consistory and peculiar courts, but is considered "incomplete and unreliable." Accordingly, the following microfilmed calendars should always be searched.
  2. 1516-1650, A-L, (FHL/BYU film 95280)
    This manuscript calendar was compiled around 1889 and perhaps revised in 1933. A note at the start of each letter of the alphabet adds that it was checked against an older calendar and the act books. The Lichfield calendars use the Latin term, Quoad bona, in the residence column to indicate persons who lived outside the court's jurisdiction.
    This new calendar includes volumes 1-2 of the Registered Copy Wills. Additionally, there are 4 entries before 1516 that are not part of the probate series, but were taken from the Bishops' Registers. They are as follows:
    • 1472, John Cotes, (B/A/1/12/7)
    • 1494, Roger Draycote of Draycote, (B/A/1/13/133)
    • 1512, William Gesson of Handsworth, (B/A/1/14i/89)
    • 1500, Anne Knyveton of Ashborne in Derby whose first husband was John Bradbury (B/A/1/13/236-257v)
    Two more entries from the Bishops' Registers are on the next film. However, at least 15 other probate entries, 1392-1510, were noted in the online catalog for the Lichfield Record Office. Click here. Choose "Search the Online Catalogue Now" followed by "Detailed searches" and then "Archive Search." Put B/A/1 in the DocRefNo box and press search. Click on "4 Bishops' Registers," then the tree symbol and register that matches the years of interest.
  3. 1516-1650, M-Z, (FHL/BYU film 95281)
    See item 2 above. The 2 entries from the Bishops' Registers are:
    • 1510, Alice Parkins, she was the late wife and executrix of Thomas Byddys and Harre Sansom, and may have been from Coventry. (B/A/1/14/93)
    • 1492, Henry Underwoode of Sutton Coldfield in Warwick (B/A/1/13/136)
    Item 2 of this same film is the manuscript referred to as the Black Book of Lichfield. It includes 23 copies of wills, 1654/5-1671, on folios 1-92. There is no mention of why these wills are copied here, but they include entries from the counties of Derby, Shropshire, Stafford, and Warwick. There is a table of contents to them at the start followed some 7 pages later by folios 1-92.
  4. 1650-1700, there is a free online index to wills and administrations for the Consistory of Lichfield and peculiar court records found in the Lichfield Record Office here Volume 125 of the Index Library series (BRS) is also available (FHL 942 B4b and BYU CS 434. B7).
  5. 1651-1725, (FHL/BYU film 95282)
    Item 1 is entitled "Calendar 4, 1651 to 1700." It includes volumes A-B of the Registered Copy Wills. Item 2 is "Calendar 4, 1701-1725," which includes volume C and part of volume D of the copy wills. A note adds that that the calendars 4-10 were "Revised and newly arranged, 1854." 
    There are 8 hand written pages at the end of item 2. The first 3 pages contain mistakes made in this calendar from 1689-1715 followed by the corrections in the second column. Typically, the surname was misspelled or the wrong given name was listed. The next 2 pages refer to entries for 1703-1714 with a reference to where that information can be found in the act books. The last 3 pages are labeled "Corrections 1701 to 1725." These are usually filing errors where the alphabetical arrangement was not followed exactly.
  6. 1726-1775, (FHL/BYU film 95283)
    Item 1 is "Calendar 5, 1726 to 1750," and item 2 is "Calendar 6, 1751 to 1775." The rest of volume D of the Registered Copy Wills is indexed here.
  7. 1776-1820, (FHL/BYU film 95284)
    Item 1 is "Calendar 7, 1776 to 1800," and item 2 is "Calendar 8, 1801 to 1820."
  8. 1821-1860, (FHL/BYU film 95285)
    Item 1 is "Calendar 9, 1821 to 1840," and item 2 is "Calendar 10, 1841 to 1860." In the latter, the Ns on pages 492-498 stop in 1858 and are continued on page 800 for 1858-1860. For 1840-1857, also see FHL/BYU film 189659 described below.

To access all of the microfilms in the collection for the Consistory of Lichfield, put 95280 in the Film/Fiche box of the main menu of the FHL catalog at FamilySearch. The collection has been filmed in two sections, by letter of the alphabet for 1516-1639, and thereafter alphabetically by year. However, FHL/BYU film 189659 will not be found there. This film contains miscellaneous probate papers for the Consistory and some of the peculiar courts of Lichfield. The records are in alphabetical order by surname and do not appear in the calendars for the Consistory or the consolidated index for the peculiar courts. It is worth searching if you have a problem in this county, 1840-1857. There are original and copy wills, but this group of records centers around the oaths sworn by executors and administrators as well as other technical matters. For instance, Samuel Trapp, gentleman of Birmingham, died intestate in 1851. His nearest living relative was a nephew, Thomas Lloyd Thornell, living in New York. Thornell gave his power of attorney to Ann Trapp, widow of Soho in London. Accordingly, the Consistory of Lichfield authorized the Consistory of London to swear in Ann Trapp who was finally allowed to administer the property.

Consolidated Index/Microfilmed Records for the Lichfield Peculiars

Consider first the online index, 1650-1700, described above under item number 4.

  • 1510-1858, Calendar, (FHL/BYU film 95287)
    This bound manuscript was compiled between 1880-1890, and does not give the names of the peculiar courts. The names of persons are arranged alphabetically by year in two groups, A-J and K-Z.

Match the entry of interest from the above calendar with the surname and year on films 173020-173272. These films contain the original wills, administrations, and inventories. Note the last entry above for the Consistory concerning FHL/BYU film 189659.

Three Manorial Courts not included with the Lichfield Peculiars

  1. There are no microfilms for the Manorial Court of Pattingham.
  2. The abstracts of probate records, 1614-1803, for the Manorial Court of Sedgley made by N.W. Tildesley are available under FHL 942.46/S3 S2t. The abstracts of inventories for the same court, 1614-1787, made by J.S. Roper are under FHL 942.46/S3 S2r.
  3. The printed index, 1695-1841, for the Manorial Court of Tyrley was published with the Shropshire peculiar courts under FHL 942.45 C4a, pages 45-46. It is also on FHL/ BYU film 95257, item 4. The matching probate records have been filmed. (FHL 96894) See the Miscellaneous Section for printed abstracts, 1553-1563, and the entries in the printed index that definitely mention Shropshire.

Miscellaneous Section

  1. There are two documents of interest to migration studies in the Consistory of Lichfield on FHL film 96325:
    • A will was proven 19 Nov 1802 for Thomas Pyatt, baker late of Aldridge in Stafford who moved to Kent.
    • Administration was granted over the goods of another Thomas Pyatt, gunner in the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Artillery who died 22 Sep 1796 on the Island of Corsica.
  2. Abstracts were made from a volume of Registered Copy Wills, (probably visitation wills) 1537-1558, 1576-1578 in the Collections for a History of Staffordshire. (FHL 942.46 B4sc 1926, volume 50) The abstracts are on pages 3-56 and contain one entry for 1583. These wills are mainly for residents of the Peculiar of Eccleshall and the Manor of Gnosall.
  3. Inventories for Lichfield and neighborhood, 1568-1680, were edited by D.G. Vaisey and published in 1969. (FHL 942.46 B4sc, Series 4) volume 5
    Vaisey collected 190 inventories from the peculiar courts of the Dean and the Dean & Chapter of Lichfield for the city of Lichfield, including Burntwood, Edial, Elmhurst, Farewell, Greenhill, Hammerwich, Pipe Hill, Streethay, Wall, Whittington, and Woodhouses.
  4. Will Abstracts, 1553-1563, for the Manor of Tyrley. (FHL 942.46 B4sc 1945/6) volume 68 The abstracts are arranged as follows:
    • 1553 Margaret Grenesell, widow of Drayton in Hales
    • 1554 John Sclader of Halys in Drayton
    • 1561 Thomas Grococke of Hales in Drayton under Hales
    • 1562 Richard Wade of Almington in Drayton in Hales
    • 1562 Humfrey Bate of Blore in Drayton in Hales
    • 1562 Richard Allen of Almington in Drayton in Hales
    • 1562 Robert Wade of Blore in Drayton in Hales
    • 1563 Robert Hurlebutte of Almington in Drayton in Hales
    • 1563 Agnes Gervis of Bloore in Drayton in Hales
  5. Additionally, a check was made against the printed index for Tyrley and the wills to be found on FHL film 96894. The majority were for the same area of Stafford as described in the above list of places. There were only 4 entries that mentioned Shropshire and those persons apparently had connections with both counties. They are as follows:
    • 1784 Richard Beeston, yeoman
    • 1799 Mary Jones, widow
    • 1760 John Pemberton, the elder, yeoman
    • 1774 William Pemberton, the elder, yeoman