||1,984, including 26 of inland water;
Census of 1901.
V.C.H. Lancs. i, 286.
Cockersand Chart. (Chet. Soc.), ii, 661.
||Ibid. 663. The first of his charters
names 'the deep lache which was the
boundary between Abram and Occleshaw.'
Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc.
Lancs. and Ches.), i, 77. How King Henry
came to have Abram in his hands is unknown. The third part in alms probably
refers to the Occleshaw and other gifts
recorded in the text.
Cockersand Chart. ii, 664. In 1246
John de Abram quitclaimed his right in
200 acres of land to Peter de Burnhull;
Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 98.
Cockersand Chart. ii, 660.
||Ibid, ii, 643. The following were
the abbey tenants in 1501: John Ashton,
12d.; William Culcheth, 12d.; Richard
Atherton and Robert Bolton, in Bickershaw, each 6d.; Cockersand Rental (Chet.
||Adam de Abram occurs in 1246;
Assize R. 404, m. 13d. In 1270–1
Robert de Abram and Robert and Adam
his sons were defendants; Curia Regis R.
201, m. 15d. From one of these may
descend the John son of Richard son of
Robert de Abram mentioned in 1342;
Towneley MS. GG, no. 2670.
Richard de Abram, probably the head of
the family, was a juror in 1288; Inq. and
Extents, i, 273. John son of Richard de
Abram was a defendant in 1301; Simon
de Holland was plaintiff; Assize R. 419,
m. 4 d.; 418, m. 2. John de Abram
seems to have died soon after his father,
for in 1305 the defendants in a case concerning land were Richard son of John de
Adburgham, Agnes widow of John, Maud
widow of Richard (probably the grandfather), Henry de Huyton, William and
Roger de Bradshagh, Simon de Holland,
John Gillibrand, and William son of
Roger de Ashton; the plaintiff was
Richard son of Adam del Lache. This
list probably includes all or most of the
freeholders; Assize R. 420, m. 8. Many
years later, in 1324–5, Richard del Lache
claimed common of pasture from Richard
de Abram; Assize R. 426, m. 9. In
1324 an agreement was made between
Adam de Kenyon and Richard de Abram
that the latter should marry Adam's
daughter Godith, her portion being £40;
Harl. MS. 2112, fol. 159–95.
William de Abram was a juror in 1387;
Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Chet. Soc.), i, 25. Soon
afterwards there are several references to
Gilbert de Abram, who was a juror in
1416; ibid. i, 116. In 1419 a proclamation was issued forbidding armed men to
go about to the peril of the king's peace,
with special reference to Gilbert de Abram
and his sons John and William, who had
entered the lands of Richard del Lache at
Abram; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxiii, App. 17.
John de Abram, probably the son of
Gilbert just mentioned, appears to have
died about the beginning of 1446, when
the writ Diem clausit extremum was issued;
Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxix, App. 533.
William de Abram, gentleman, and Joan
daughter of John de Abram, occur in suits
of 1445; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 8,
m. 1, 6.
||In the time of Edward IV there was
made a settlement of his estate, or part of
it, in favour of his two daughters; Towneley MS. CC, no. 651. It is described as
seven messuages, 124 acres of land, &c.
John Abram was the deforciant. Possibly
he was the heir male; in which case Gilbert must have been dead at that time.
In the Visitations the father's name is
given as John.
About 1500 James Holt with Isabel his
wife and Constance Byrom a widow, as
cousins and heirs of Hugh Boydell and
daughters and heirs of Gilbert Abram
claimed a right of toll from all who crossed
the Mersey between Runcorn and Thelwall; Duchy Plead. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and
Ches.), i, 39–41. In Ormerod's Ches. (ed.
Helsby), i, 596, it is stated that Isabel,
one of the sisters and co-heirs of Robert
Boydell, was married to John Abram as
early as 1405; Gilbert was the son and
heir; a few years later she was the wife
of Nicholas Langton. The other sister,
Margaret, married Hugh Reddish. See
also op. cit. ii, 723.
||Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xi, no. 46;
Thomas Holt of Grislehurst. In the inquisition taken after the death of Henry
Byrom in 1613, it was found that he had
held lands in Abram, &c., of the lord of
Newton, but the service was not known;
Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and
Ches.), i, 273; ii, 12.
||a Thomas Abram seems to have been
lord about 1500 and John Abram in 1528;
Duchy Plead. i, 162, 163. In 1540 Thomas
Abram was defendant in a claim to messuages, &c., in Abram put forward by Gilbert Hindley and Elizabeth his wife;
Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), i, 163.
||In 1567 Thomas Abraham, the last of
the family, was deforciant of the manor of
Abram, and lands in the township; Pal.
of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 29, m. 68; and
again, in conjunction with Mary his wife,
in 1600; ibid. bdle. 62, m. 275. The
remainders in the former settlement are
thus stated: To Peter brother of Thomas,
Sir Thomas Gerard, Thomas and George,
sons of the late Richard Abraham of
Westleigh; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 223,
m. 18. Thomas Abraham, in October
1606, was buried at Wigan, as 'father-inlaw to Mr. Henry Lance of Abram';
Wigan Reg. He was on the recusant list
of 1599–1600; Gillow, Bibl. Dict. of
Engl. Cath. iv, 112.
Visit. of Cornw. (Harl. Soc.), 124.
The story of the marriage is curious.
'Abram of Abram, a gentleman of £100
land in Lancashire, put his daughter
and heir unto my lady Gerard of the
Brynn. Sir Thomas and my lady being
here in London, one Dwelles, a fencer
near Cecil house, and his wife, by indirect
means—being of kin to the girl—did invite all my lady's children and gentlewomen unto a breakfast. They came
thither, and at their coming the youths
and serving men were carried up to the
fence school. My lady's daughters and
gentlewomen must needs play at the cards,
will they nill they. The girl Abram, by
the wife of the house, was conveyed into
a chamber and shut the door after her and
there left her. The girl found in the
chamber four or five tall men. She knew
them not. And immediately the girl fell
into a great fear, seeing them to compass
her about. Then began an "old priest"
to read upon a book. His words she
understood not, saving these words: "I
Henry take thee Susan to my wedded
wife," etc. This done they charged the
wench never to discover this to anybody
living; and so sent her down to her
fellows. And dinner being done the
wench told to her fellows very lamentably
what had been done; and they over to
Sir Thomas and my lady.' The date of
this deposition is 1583. Quoted in Leyland's Abram from Ellis's Original Letters
(Ser. 1), ii, 292.
||By an indenture of 10 Dec. 1598
the estate was secured to Mary wife of
Thomas Abram for life, with reversion
to Henry Lance and Susan his wife, eldest
daughter of Thomas Abram, and their
heirs; in default, to Philip Langton and
Mary his wife, younger daughter of Thomas
Abram; Leyland, op. cit. 11. Mary
Abram gave £90 to the school at Hindley.
||An informer gave evidence that Abraham Lance and Abraham Langton—so
named from their mother's family—were
'present at a meeting of some of the
leading Catholics of the county, held at
the house of Widow Knowles in Ashton
the day before Newton Fair, 30 July 1623,
at which Sir Thomas Gerard is asserted to
have made a treasonable speech. In 1626
Abraham Lance, of Abram, gent. and
Emma his wife are found in the recusant
rolls'; Gillow, op. cit. iv, 112.
In 1628 Henry Lance the father, as a
convicted recusant, paid double to the
subsidy; Norris D. (B.M.). He was
buried at Wigan, 7 Jan. 1629–30.
Cal. Com. for Compounding, iv, 2967;
Royalist Comp. Papers (Rec. Soc. Lancs.
and Ches.), iv, 55. No reason is assigned
except the recusancy of the petitioner's
mother, who was buried at Wigan 9 Sept.
1648, as 'Old Mrs. Susan Lance of Dalton.' Emma wife of Abraham Lance
was buried at the same place 17 Mar.
||Abraham Lance certainly had issue,
for a son Henry was baptized at Wigan
in 1619, and another was buried in
1620; Wigan Reg. Hence the Captains Abraham and Robert Lance stated
by Lord Castlemain to have been slain at
Rowton Heath may have been his sons;
John Lance was another of the family,
killed at Islip; Gillow, loc. cit. A Captain Lance was taken prisoner 6 Mar.
1643–4; Civil War Mem. (Rec. Soc.
Lancs. and Ches.) 125. Abraham married again, Elizabeth daughter of Richard
Mascy of Rixton, and afterwards wife of
George Mascy, being his second wife;
Dugdale, Visit. (Chet. Soc.), 194.
||In 1649 Abraham Lance appointed
William Gerard of Garswood, son and heir
apparent of Sir William Gerard of Brynn,
receiver for behoof of Abraham Lance and
his wife and their heirs, with remainder
to the use of the said William Gerard; a
bond, signed by William Gerard in 1667,
mentions that Abraham Lance had died
about seven years before without male
issue. See J. Leyland's Abram, 12, for
fuller abstracts of these and other deeds.
Fines relating to the above are Pal. of
Lanc. Feet of F. bdles. 146, m. 111; 180,
||On 16 Sept. 1667 the estate was
conveyed to Richard Hilton of Westleigh, yeoman, for £1,505; it included
two pews in Wigan Church; also the following fee-farm rents: 'William Leyland,
5s.; John Anderton, 3s. 4d.; late Frances Dukinfield, 11d.; Richard Occleshaw,
13d.; James Wreast, 3s. 5d.; Thomas Holland, 1s. 6d.; Roger Culcheth, 2d.; John
Lithgoe, 1d.;' see Leyland, op. cit. 12,
13. Richard Hilton died at the beginning
||Ibid. 14. Thomas Crook is described
as of Hoole, Lancashire. He was the
founder of numerous charities, and left
money 'to the preaching Protestant minister of Hindley chapel.' He expressed a
desire to be buried with his mother (Margaret Green) and brother in Standish parish church; Leyland, op. cit. 14, 118–21;
also Local Glean. Lancs. and Ches. i, 147.
An accusation of coin clipping, probably
false, was made against William Crook and
Thomas his brother in 1684; Hist. MSS.
Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 173, 175.
||Leyland, Hindley, 65.
||The will of Thomas Crook already
quoted mentions estates at Bretherton,
Much Hoole, Mawdesley, Walton le Dale,
Billinge, Euxton, Ulnes Walton, Leyland,
Farington, Alston, and Whittingham.
Richard had an elder brother Caleb, who
also died without issue.
Abigail Crook, the widow, died about
1705; an abstract of her will is printed in
Local Glean. ii, 231, in which volume is
much information as to the Crook family.
Several documents about their properties
are in the possession of W. Farrer.
||Ibid. ii, 231, 237. The eldest sister,
Lydia, married Thomas Yates of Whitchurch; the second, Anne, married John
Darbyshire of Warrington; the third,
Abigail, married in 1707 John Andrews
of Bolton le Moors; the fourth, Margaret,
married (1) John Percival of Liverpool
and Allerton, and (2) Thomas Summers
of Liverpool; the fifth, Isabel, married (1)
—Danvers, and (2) Rev. Thomas Heys of
||In 1734 all the heirs joined in a
lease of the manor of Abram, viz.—Thomas Yates and Lydia his wife, Thomas
Clayton and Abigail his wife, John Andrews and Abigail his wife, Thomas Summers and Margaret his wife, Thomas
Heys and Isabel his wife. There is an
account of the Clayton family in Abram's
||Leyland, Abram, 15, 16.
||Information of Mr. Whitley and
Mr. William Valiant of Newton.
||'The whole land of Occleshaw' was
granted by William de Occleshaw to the
canons of Cockersand about the end of
the 12th century. The bounds are thus
given: 'From where Deep lache runs
down from Bageley head, by the lache to
Glazebrook, up this brook and Occleshaw
brook, to Rushy lache and so to Bickershaw, then up the lache to the Slavi-lache,
by this to within Bageley wood Eves, and
so to Deep lache;' Cockersand Chart. ii,
660, 664. William de Occleshaw is
called William Gillibrand in the confirming charter; and John Gillibrand had the
land as the canons' tenant in 1268 at a
rent of 12d.; ibid. 643, 661. Other Occleshaws occur in Hindley and Aspull.
The spelling of the Chartulary is Aculuesaue or Aculuesahe; in 1292, Okeleshawe.
||Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. iii, no. 30;
John Urmston of Westleigh, 1507.
Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and
Ches.), ii, 433; Richard Urmston, 1624.
The rent payable was 12d., as paid by John
||In 1292 William del Platt unsuccessfully claimed right of way beyond the
lands of Thomas and Roger de Occleshaw
in Abram; Assize R. 408, m. 65 d. The
same William demanded lands in Abram
and Ince from William Gillibrand, Margery his wife, and others in 1305; it was
agreed that he should receive a rent of 5d.
for them; Assize R. 420, m. 3d. A fine
between Beatrice daughter of Thomas
de Occleshaw and her father in 1303 settled a messuage and lands upon her; Final
Conc. i, 200. Richard Gillibrand and
Cicely his wife; Roger Gillibrand; and
Margery and Lucy, daughters of Adam
son of William Gillibrand, occur in various suits of 1365; De Banco R. 419, m.
192, 108d.; 420, m. 17.
John Occleshaw of Abram, gentleman,
was a trustee in 1531; Add. MS. 32105,
no. 912. Thomas Occleshaw in 1568
held four messuages, &c. in Abram; Pal.
of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 30, m. 111. In
1600 John Occleshaw was a freeholder
and Henry Occleshaw in 1628; Misc.
(Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 240;
Norris D. (B.M.).
||A mortgage by Richard Occleshaw
and Thomas his son in 1698 seems to
have prepared the way to a sale, the release being granted 3 Apr. 1700; the
purchase money was £590. In 1713–14
an indenture was made between Thomas
Occleshaw and Elizabeth his wife, and
Thomas son of Thomas and the representative of Abigail Crook. From abstract of title in possession of W. Farrer.
||It is possible that this was the oxgang
of land held by Alan de Burton in 1212,
rendering yearly 12d. in fee-farm; Lancs.
Inq. and Extents, i, 77.
William son of John de Ashton was a
defendant in 1305; Assize R. 420, m. 8.
Amota daughter of Robert de Ashton
by his wife Emma was with Robert del
Coran and Eva his wife and Jordan de
Rixton and Agnes his wife a plaintiff in
1329 respecting lands in Abram; De Banco
R. 278, m. 31d.; 281, m. 76. Another
suit of the series is recorded under Hindley; the defendant in the Abram cases is
called William de Ashton instead of
William the Fisher. William de Ashton
contributed to the subsidy of 1332; Exch.
Lay Subs. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 13.
Richard de Ashton of Abram attested a
Newton charter in 1373; Raines MSS.
(Chet. Lib.), xxxviii, 146. Richard de
Ashton of Abram in 1388 granted to his
son Roger and another lands in Sankey
and Penketh acquired from Margaret
widow of Simon de Langtree; ibid. 87.
The name occurs in 1445 in a complaint
by Katherine the widow and Gilbert the
son of William de Ashton, as executors,
against Richard de Ashton of Abram and
others, respecting the seizure of cows and
other property; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 8,
m. 6. In the following year there were
cross-suits between Katherine the widow
and Oliver, Gilbert, and James the sons
of William de Ashton, and Richard, also
son of William de Ashton of Abram,
Hindley, and Ince; ibid. R. 9, m. 13b, 14,
14b. In 1448 William son of Richard
de Ashton of Bamfurlong was charged
with breaking into Sir John de Byron's
close at Atherton; ibid. R. 12, m. 6.
In 1478 a marriage was agreed upon
between Oliver son and heir of Thurstan
Anderton and Margaret daughter of
John Ashton of Bamfurlong; Duchy Plead.
(Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 92, 97.
John Ashton, about fourteen years of
age and in ward to Roger Anderton of
Bickershaw, being son and heir of Gilbert
Ashton, in 1552 made complaint that
various servants of Sir Thomas Gerard
had prevented his viewing Bamfurlong
Hall and its lands, Sir Thomas apparently
asserting that a Richard Ashton was the
true heir; ibid. iii, 124, 125. At the
same time John Ashton and Richard his
son alleged their title to Bamfurlong
against Richard, Cecily, and Anne Ashton,
Roger Anderton, Gilbert Lee, Gilbert
Houghton, and Ralph Anderton; Ducatus
Lanc. (Rec. Com.), ii, 114.
John Ashton of Bamfurlong, senior, and
his son and heir were in 1590 among the
'comers to church but no communicants';
Gibson, Lydiate Hall, 246, quoting S.P.
Dom.Eliz. ccxxxv, 4. In 1598 as an avowed
recusant he was called upon to pay £10
for 'her Majesty's service in Ireland';
ibid. 262, from S.P. Dom. Eliz. cclxvi, 80.
John Ashton, claiming by inheritance
from Richard Ashton, deceased, demanded
in 1594 an estate in Bamfurlong, &c., from
Adam Hawarden, Margaret Ashton, and
Lawrence Bispham; Duchy Plead. iii, 293.
In that year Richard Ashton of Bamfurlong
had died holding nothing, as the inquest
found, and leaving a son Richard who was
but sixteen in 1609; Lancs. Inq. p.m.
(Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 130. At
the Visitation in 1613 (Chet. Soc. 17)
Richard was said to be twenty years of
age; his father Richard was son of John
Ashton of Bamfurlong. John Ashton had
died in 1603, being buried on 30 July at
Wigan; Reg. Richard Ashton, being a
convicted recusant, paid double to the subsidy in 1628; Norris D.(B.M.).
||This family recorded a pedigree in
1664, in which they are already described
as 'of Bamfurlong'; Dugdale, Visit.
(Chet. Soc.), 118. It is not clear how
they obtained possession. In 1684 John
Ashton called for an inquiry as to the
title of Henry Gerard, son of Henry
Gerard, a solicitor, deceased, to the
hall of Bamfurlong, a water corn-mill, and
various lands, formerly the property of
Richard Ashton and his daughter Mary,
deceased; Exch. Depos. (Rec. Soc.), 65.
There is a charge of 'dishonest contrivances' against the elder Henry.
||See Gillow, Bibl. Dict. of Engl. Cath.
ii, 431; Leyland, Abram, 18, 19. From
the latter it seems that Henry Gerard the
son in 1681 married Cecily West, who
in 1717 (now Cecily Howett) as 'a papist'
registered an annuity of £80 derived from
her first husband; Engl. Cath. Nonjurors,
128. Henry's brother Ralph, a priest,
served the domestic chapel at Bamfurlong.
||Sir Thomas Holcroft held Bickershaw
manor of James Browne by a rent of 6d.
in 1558; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. x, no.
13. There was a large amount of disputing about it at the time, as will be
seen by a reference to the Ducatus Lanc.
(Rec. Com.), i, 145, 150; ii, 56, 194.
Hugh Bradshaw and Constance his wife
were in possession in 1535, but Thomas
Holcroft's title was allowed.
||William Holcroft and Elizabeth his
wife were vendors; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of
F. bdle. 61, m. 139.
||It was purchased from Edward Bolton
in 1671, according to the statement in
Leyland's Abram, 20; but was acquired by
Frances Dukinfield in 1633 or 1634 from
Ralph Ashton and Katherine his wife;
Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 124, m. 18.
The later succession is described in
Leyland, 21–8. See also Pal. of Lanc.
Feet of F. bdle. 362, m. 129.
||Leyland, op. cit. 23, 24; and information of the secretary to the company.
Nothing of the old house remains.
||Some deeds concerning the family have
been preserved by Towneley, Add. MS.
32105, no. 906–23. The other information is given in the Culcheth papers published in Lancs. and Ches. Hist. and Gen. Notes.
In 1392 John son of Thomas de Culcheth had lands in Abram and Hindley;
his son Roger had married Ellen daughter
of Henry son of Robert de Blackrod; Add.
MS. 32105, no. 915.
William Culshaw in 1531 arranged for
the marriage of Roger, his son and heir,
with Janet daughter of John Richardson;
his own wife was named Margery; ibid.
no. 911, 912, 919. The lands in Hindley
were called Occleshull and Taleor, and in
||Ibid. no. 909. The holding in Abram
was two messuages, two tofts, two gardens,
two orchards, 40 acres of land, 20 acres
of meadow, and 20 acres of pasture.
Roger Culcheth was his son and heir, and
six years of age.
||Dugdale, Visit. (Chet. Soc.), 92.
Roger Culcheth was still living, aged eightyfour; his son George recorded the pedigree.
His two eldest sons had been slain at
Newbury, and a younger son in Wirral in
the Civil Wars; Thomas, the third son,
aged forty-four, was the heir.
||See Lancs. and Ches. Hist. and Gen.
Notes, ii, 228, for a continuation of the
pedigree by Mr. J. P. Rylands. Roger
Culcheth of Wottenbury in Warwickshire, by his will of 1701, left his estate
in the parish of Wigan to his brother
Thomas of Studley in Warwickshire,
tanner; ibid. p. 120. This Thomas left
a son William, who seems to have been the
last of the family connected with Abram;
ibid. i, 275, 276. See also Payne's Engl.
Cath. Rec. 26. Part of their land is now
the property of the trustees of Abigail
Roger Culcheth of Abram, as a 'papist,'
registered his estate in 1717, the value
was £64 15s. 4d.; Engl. Cath. Nonjurors,
124. The name of the family had
constantly appeared on the Recusant Rolls;
Gillow's Bibl. Dict. Engl. Cath. i, 608.
||Adam, son and heir-apparent of
Robert Bolton, was a surety for William
Culcheth in 1531; Add. MS. 32105, no.
912. The father and son were engaged
in numerous disputes as to their property,
called Blackfields, Mossheys, Lower House,
New Earth, etc.; see Ducatus Lanc. (Rec.
Com.), i, 166, &c. It appears that Robert
Bolton died in 1552 or 1553; his wife's
name was Elizabeth Holden. Another
Robert Bolton is mentioned in 1583 (ibid.
iii, 149), and the inquisition after the
death of Edward Bolton in 1587 is in Duchy
of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xv, no. 48. The tenure
is not recorded; Edward's heir was his son
William, twenty-three years of age.
William Bolton was a freeholder in
1600 and Edward Bolton in 1628; Misc.
(Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 239;
Norris D. (B.M). This is perhaps the
Edward Bolton who sold Bickershaw Hall
in 1671. Deeds relating to Bolton House
in Abram and other properties of the family
are printed in Lancs. and Ches. Hist. and
Gen. Notes, ii, 39, 47.
||Mascy of Rixton D.
||Richard Corless as a landowner contributed to the subsidy of 1628; Norris D.
||Nicholas Huyton of Blackrod in 1528
held lands in Abram of the heirs of John
Abram by a rent of 5s.; Duchy of Lanc.
Inq. p.m. vi, no. 53. In 1628 John Lithgoe contributed to the subsidy 'for Huyton's lands'; Norris D. (B.M.).
||William Leyland was a trustee in
1626; Add. MS. 32105, no. 906. Their
connexion with the township ceased about
1780; but John Leyland of Cheetham
House (afterwards called the Grange) in
Hindley represented them down to his
death in 1883; his accounts of Hindley
and Abram, published in 1873 and 1881,
have been used in these notes. A grant
of arms was made to him in 1863; Lancs.
and Ches. Hist. and Gen. Notes, iii, 34.
||Leyland, op. cit. 114; the custom
was observed in 1880. Mr. William Valiant informs us that this is still kept up.
||Leyland, Abram, 29–35. The tenures
of the second and third of the incumbents
appear to have been shortened by their
parishioners' objection to what was called
'ritualism.' The district chapelry was
formed in 1843; Lond. Gaz. 1 Aug. and
3 Oct. 1843.
||Gastrell, Notitia, ii, 256.