Monday, 19 November 2007

The Fitzhenrys of Rock, Worcester Part 2

Firstly note that I've dropped the hyphen in Fitzhenry - the family didn't seem to use it when they were signing their legal documents (see picture). The other thing is to note that Ann signed the document for herself. She was the daughter of a wealthy clergy man, so unlike many women of her time she was literate. I've got so many birth marriage and death certificates where the woman's mark is just a cross.
Anyhow, a distillation of the rest of the Chancery papers. It seems that Thomas Bradley Paget and Elizabeth Paget got the declaration from the Court that they wanted and got at least some of the money they felt they were entitled to. But their victory was short lived - Charles Watkins (Elizabeth's brother and the Heir to Richard Watkins' Estate) died in 1813 and this left his two sisters disputing what remained of the father's estate with Charles' widow. Elizabeth died in November 1815 aged 27, leaving Thomas with 3 young children. Ann Fitzhenry died in 1825 (so that's all the Watkins siblings now dead) and Andrew Fitzhenry died in February 1830. Each time one of the Defendants died (or another child was born), a new Bill had to be submitted to the Court of Chancery which summarised all which had gone before and listing who the new Defendants were. The last of the Bills of Chancery that I've seen is 1831 when Andrew Richard Fitzhenry takes over the reins from his father. I have an image of Thomas Bradley Paget becoming a bitter and twisted man as the case trundled in over the decades. I know that Andrew Richard FH died in 1844 and Thomas Bradley Paget in 1846 so perhaps the matter died with them then.

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