Land Tax Assessments
Allowing for the fact that Land Tax Assessments were compiled to facilitate the collection of a tax, rather than to provide a comprehensive record of all owners and occupiers of property in a parish, they still constitute an invaluable source for the local and family historian.
The Land Tax was introduced in 1692 and was finally abolished, after many changes, in 1963. The surviving assessments list owners of land in each parish and (sometimes) occupiers.
The assessments survive best for the 1780-1832 period, when copies were provided for the Clerk of the Peace, who could then use them to check who was entitled to vote in parliamentary elections.
It is quite common for Assessments from before c.1780 to contain only one set of names. Generally speaking these can be assumed to be the proprietors. Throughout the period the names supplied are usually those of the male heads of households.
From 1798 the tax was fixed at four shillings in the pound and became a permanent annually levied charge on the land. Owners of land valued under one pound a year were exempt.
Standard forms were introduced for Assessments from this date bearing the following column headings:
- Rentals: the annual value of the property (often not completed)
- Names of proprietors and copyholders: names are often abbreviated and no indication given of residence or profession.
- Names of occupiers: all tenants may not be specifically mentioned e.g. 'James Thornton and others'; one cannot assume in such cases that Thornton is a more substantial tenant than any other.
- Names or description of Estates or Property: house numbers or street names are rarely provided, property is most commonly described simply as 'House' or 'Land' although public houses, shops, mills, etc. may be identified.
- Sums assessed and exonerated: in 1798 the option of securing exemption from annual payments by a one-off payment equivalent to 15 years tax was introduced.
Cambridgeshire Land Tax returns
The following indexes are available:
- 1750 Ely and South Witchford division: typescript index of owners with parishes
- 1798 Wisbech and North Witchford division and Liberties of Thorney and Whittlesey: typescript index of owners and occupiers with parishes
- 1829 Cambridgeshire, Cambridge Borough and Ely and South Witchford division: card index of owners and occupiers with parishes
The following publications, available for reference in our searchroom, provide more detailed information on the history and applications of Land Tax Assessments:
- Land Tax Assessments - H.G. Hunt in Short Guides to Records ed. Lionel M. Munby, 1972
- Land and Property, The English Land Tax, 1692-1832 - M. Turner and D. Mills, 1986
- Family Roots, Discovering the Past in the Public Record Office pp.63-64 Stella Colwell, 1991
- Land and Window Tax Assessments - J. Gibson, M. Medlycott and D. Mills, 1998
- Search Guide to the English Land Tax - R.W. Unwin, West Yorkshire County Record Office, 1982
- Halsbury's Statutes of England Third Edition Vol 18, 1970
Land Value Duties
The Finance Act of 1910 introduced a short-lived tax on land values often known as 'Lloyd George's Domesday'.
The final records, consisting of plans and field books are held at the National Archives. Their website includes a useful guide to using Valuation Office records.
The working plans,1:2500 scale Ordnance Survey maps coloured and marked up with plot numbers to help identify areas of different ownership are held at Cambridgeshire Archives together with the valuation books which give details of the owner, occupier, extent and rateable value of each property. These can be very useful if you are trying to establish ownership of a particular property or piece of land aroud 1910
We also have the original valuations act forms ('Form 37'), which give the valuers' provisional evaluations. These were formerly held by the District Valuation offices and copies of would have been sent to the owner of each property.
Huntingdonshire Archives has the valuation (or LVD) books for the whole of Huntingdonshire (with the exceptions of Offord Cluny and Offord Darcy, which do not survive) and many of the maps and valuation act forms (accession 2808). The catalogue of the LVD books is available online.
The valuation books for the Peterborough area are now held at Northamptonshire Record Office, but sadly not the working sheets, which are believed to have been destroyed in 1968.
Cambridgeshire Archives has the valuation (or LVD) books for the pre-1974 county of Cambridgeshire including the Isle of Ely. The catalogue is available online and most of the 'working sheet' maps. We also have the original valuations act forms for Cambridge, South Cambridgeshire and East Cambridgeshire (R79/077) Fenland and Thorney (R79/081) and the Wisbech area (R89/043).
Huntingdonshire ArchivesSubsidies for Huntingdonshire for 1290-1332 were published by J.A.Raftis and M.P.Morgan, Early Huntingdonshire Lay Subsidy Rolls (Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies, Toronto, 1996). A copy of this book is available in the searchroom.
Microfilm of Cambridgeshire subsidy rolls for 1374, 1522-4, 1545-6, 1567-8 and 1610-11 (not all complete) can be viewed at Cambridgeshire Archives. There is a transcript of the 1327 subsidy with surname index by J.J. Muskett (ed. C.H. Evelyn White). Cambridgeshire Subsidy Rolls, 1250-1695 W.M. Palmer (Norwich 1912) includes a full transcript of the 1640-1 roll for the whole county. Both are available in the searchroom library.
The records cover the 17th to the 20th centuries. The catalogue for this collection is available online.
Local Government archives
Below is a very simplified potted history of the various local government bodies which have operated in this area: all the names typed in bold have their own entries in the Archives A to Z, to which you can refer for more information.
Before 1889 much administrative work at county level was done by unelected JPs in the Court of Quarter Sessions. In 1889 the Court's administrative functions were taken over by a new elected body, Huntingdonshire County Council (1889-1965).
In 1965 both this Council and the Soke of Peterborough County Council were abolished and replaced by a single Huntingdon and Peterborough County Council.
In 1974 this too was abolished and replaced by Cambridgeshire County Council. In 1998 Peterborough and some parishes in the north of the old county (Chesterton, Alwalton and so on) were granted unitary status, becoming Peterborough City Council.
It is often not realised that this new Peterborough City Council is a different body from the old Peterborough City Council (1974-1998), which was a district, not a county, level authority.
Historically, Huntingdonshire's parishes were grouped into four areas, called 'hundreds', namely Hurstingstone, Leightonstone, Norman Cross and Toseland. These hundreds formed the basis of some judicial and local government bodies, such as Petty Sessions districts.
From 1835 parishes were also grouped together as poor law unions, administered by Boards of Guardians: irritatingly, the poor law union areas did not coincide with the old hundreds.
The poor law union areas were further sub-divided into four sanitary districts under the 1872 Public Health Act: namely, Hurstingstone Rural Sanitary Authority, Leightonstone RSA, Norman Cross RSA and Toseland RSA. These four areas bore little relation to the old hundreds, despite their names. In 1894 these unelected rural sanitary authorities became elected rural district councils (eg. St Ives RSD was now St Ives RDC): see District Councils 1894-1974. In the Soke of Peterborough a similar process happened, with the creation of Barnack and Peterborough RDCs. Every single one of these bodies was abolished in 1974. Huntingdonshire area districts were replaced by Huntingdonshire District Council, Peterborough area ones by Peterborough City Council.
Parishes and towns
During the 17th and 18th centuries ecclesiastical parishes were the main units of local government in villages, and records of local poor relief, rates, road upkeep etc. can therefore be found in the deposited archives of Anglican churches. In 1894 parish councils were created, taking over the churches' civil responsibilities.
Towns, however, operated slightly differently: 'Huntingdon' was confirmed as a borough in 1205. Its town corporation was replaced in 1835 by an elected council. The borough was abolished in 1961 and replaced by a new one covering both Huntingdon and Godmanchester. This was in turn abolished in 1974, and many of its responsibilities were inherited by Huntingdonshire District Council. See Huntingdon Borough; Huntingdon and Godmanchester Borough Council.
'Godmanchester' became a self-governing manor in 1212 and a free borough in 1604; in 1835 it gained an elected council. The borough was abolished in 1961 and replaced by a new one covering both Huntingdon and Godmanchester. This was in turn abolished in 1974, and many of its responsibilities were inherited by Huntingdonshire District Council. See Godmanchester Borough; Huntingdon and Godmanchester Borough Council.
'Ramsey' gained an elected Local Board in 1872, which became Ramsey Urban District Council in 1894. The UDC was abolished in 1974. See Sanitary Districts; District Councils 1894-1974.
'St Ives' received an Improvement Commission in 1847. The commission became St Ives Urban Sanitary Authority in 1872, which in turn became St Ives Municipal Borough in 1874. The borough was abolished in 1974. See Sanitary Districts; St Ives Borough Council.
'St Neots' received an Improvement Commission in 1816, which acted as the urban sanitary authority until the creation of an elected Local Board in 1876. In 1894 the Local Board became St Neots Urban District Council. The UDC was abolished in 1974. See Sanitary Districts; District Councils 1894-1974.
'Peterborough' received an Improvement Commission in 1790, which remained the effective unit of local government until 1874 when Peterborough was incorporated as a municipal borough. In 1974 the borough was abolished and its responsibilities were inherited by Peterborough City Council
Local historians' collections
- Peter ALLIX (1847-1943; see Venn, Alumni Cantab): scrapbooks including draft history of Swaffham Prior, 1899 (Cambridgeshire Archives: R85/7)
- J I BROMWICH (?d c1980-90), fenland archaeologist: field diaries, mainly in Cottenham 1934-36, 1951-55, and associated plans etc (Cambridgeshire Archives: R81/90)
- Alan G. CLARK of Elton. Elton local history files c.1975-2011 (Huntingdonshire Archives: 5475.)
- William COLE (1714-82; see DNB, W M Palmer, William Cole of Milton (1935), W M Palmer (ed) Monumental Inscriptions and Coats of Arms from Cambridgeshire (1932), and F G Stokes (ed) The Blecheley Diary of William Cole (1931)). Coles enormous collection was bequeathed to the British Museum (now Library). Microfilm of the main volumes of his Parochial Antiquities for Cambridgeshire are available, with a somewhat imperfect published index by G J Gray (1912) and a photocopy extract of a manuscript list of contents from Cambridge University Library Add Ms 4478. Coles History of Fen Ditton, 1780, is in the University Library (Add Ms 6890). His history of the Cotton Family of Landwade and Madingley, 1763 is in Cambridgeshire Archives (588/F43)
- Charles Henry COOPER (1808-66; see DNB), coroner and town clerk of Cambridge. Author of Annals of Cambridge (5 vols: 1842-52, 1908). Volumes of transcripts of documents made by and for him are amongst Cambridge City Records (Palmer and Bernard vols. 29-34) and there is a folder of loose notes. His copy of Carruthers History of Huntingdon is in Huntingdonshire Archives (C44.3 HUN)
- John COWELL (1900- 1981) of Soham, solicitor. Amassed a large collection of documents relating to Soham and area, mainly 19th-20th cent (Cambridgeshire Archives: R83/27; R86/9)
- Sir Frank ENGELDOW (1890-1985), Drapers Professor of Agriculture. Collection of papers for history of Girton (Cambridgeshire Archives; R77/17)
- Francis GARRETT of Cambridge (d.2009) Records of the Watts and related families of Cottenham 1716-1919 (Cambridgeshire Archives: R111/011)
- John Lester GILBERT of 'Riverside', Wansford (d 1985). Local and family history research and photographs relating to Wansford, Stibbington and Thornhaugh 20th cent. (Huntingdonshire Archives: 4051)
- Malcolm HERON (d 1975). Notes for his pamphlet Ferry Path: the story of a Cambridge river street (1974). (Cambridgeshire Archives: R78/037)
- Reginald HOLMES (d 1983). Author of several pamphlets on Ely and transcriber of parish and other records. Typescript transcripts of documents in Cambridgeshire Archives. Notes etc on Ely families (R95/96). A frequent depositor of records and copies (Cambridgeshire Archives: R63/8; R65/2, 29, 35; R65/58; R69/31; R70/45; R71/84; R75/75, 77; R79/83; R80/47; R83/84)
- George Nathan MAYNARD (1828-1908). Collector and antiquary with an interest in archaeology, natural history etc. First curator of the Saffron Walden Museum. Collections for Whittlesford and surrounding villages in twelve volumes (Cambridgeshire Archives: R58/5) with associated collections of family records (Cambridgeshire Archives: R60/23; R80/70)
- Major P C D MUNDY (d 1959). Author of Memorials of Ickleton (1945). Notes 1930s-1950s (Cambridgeshire Archives: R60/20), collections of documents (Cambridgeshire Archives: R51/29)
- Harold PAINTER (1899-1979), sub-postmaster of Sutton. Amassed a large collection of documents relating to Sutton (Cambridgeshire Archives: R79/90; R80/10, 12; R81/4). Most of his notes are in the Cambridgeshire Collection (Cambridge Central Library) with published extracts under the title Harold Painter - Sutton-in-the-Isle, 1980
- William Mortlock PALMER (1866-1939) of Linton, physician. See PCAS xxxix (1940), 1-4 (obituary) and C E Parsons, A Cambridgeshire Doctor: W M Palmer of Linton, (1946), including bibliography. Listed pre-1835 Cambridge Borough records with E A Bernard 1922-28 and older Quarter Sessions records with Louis Tebbutt. Papers bequeathed to Cambridge University Library (Add Ms ? ) but documentary collections to County Muniments (now Cambridgeshire Archives: L94-95)
- Catherine Elizabeth PARSONS (1890 - 1956). Recollections and village survey notes and photographs for Horseheath (Cambridgeshire Archives: P95/28; R88/63; R97/12 )
- J R RAVENSDALE (d 1994) of Landbeach, college lecturer. Collections and some notes, mainly for Cottenham, Landbeach and Waterbeach (Cambridgeshire Archives: R93/94)
- Canon Henry Paine STOKES (1849-1931), clergyman. See P Bury, History of Corpus Christi College 1822 - 1952, pp.245-47. Notes in CAS Library (see PCAS xxxiii, 168-9). Copy of notes on Girton (Cambridgeshire Archives: R77/17)
- Col Louis TEBBUTT (1862-1947) of Bluntisham. Listed Quarter Sessions records with Palmer. Interested mainly in history of fen drainage. Notes among those of C F Tebbutt at Huntingdonshire Archives. Notebooks (Cambridgeshire Archives: R66/2). Collection of fenland maps (originals and copies) among Great Ouse River Division records.
- Geoffrey Odell VINTER (c1900-1981) of Thriplow Manor. Extensive notes on Fowlmere and Thriplow (Cambridgeshire Archives: 292/Z21, 26)
This comprises the estate and family records of the Montagu family, Dukes of Manchester of Kimbolton Castle, with estates in Huntingdonshire and other counties: and papers too of the Bernard family of Brampton Park, the Bernard estates in England and Ireland having passed to the Manchesters in 1822.
The bulk of the Collection came into the possession of Huntingdonshire Archives in the 1940s; further records came in 1979 (accession 2829, known as Manchester II), and since then a handful of other accessions have been received here too.
The Collection is a significant and irreplaceable source for Huntingdonshire history. It includes:
- Deeds of many Huntingdonshire parishes, 16th - 20th centuries
- Records of many Huntingdonshire manors held by the Manchesters, including Bury, Kimbolton, Slepe in St Ives, Spaldwick, Little Stukeley and Swineshead; also manorial records of Kelvedon in Essex, 1297-1514
- Estate records of the various Manchester and Bernard estates from 1598
- Many papers of the family itself, including: Lady Olivia Bernard Sparrow's letters to her daughter Millicent, Duchess of Manchester,1820; Earl of Manchester's letters when Ambassador to France 1699 and to Venice 1707; Duchess of Manchester's letters during the Embassy to France 1770-1777; papers re the separation of Susan, Duchess of Manchester, from the Duke 1813-1827
- Maps and plans, including: designs by Vanbrugh for rebuilding Kimbolton Castle 1709; signed copies of Robert Adam designs for the Castle 1763-66; St Ives Assembly Rooms 18th century; maps of Co. Armagh, Jamaica, North America and South Africa, 18th-19th centuries
- Records of the Hunts Light Horse Volunteers 1862-1878
The 'Manchester Collection' catalogue is available in the searchroom. This catalogue was made in 1957, and is quite poor by today's standards. It only covers the items deposited in 1948 (accession no. 1). A card index to these items is available in the searchroom.
A summary list of the Manchester II Collection is available in catalogue number 25: 'Manchester Appendixes', available in the searchroom.
This file also contains revised catalogue entries for some of Manchester I (such as architectural plans, Irish Commissary papers, prints and cartoons), as well as notes on various aspects of the Collection and on related groups of records.
The important Civil War papers, records relating to early settlements in Virginia and a number of State papers of the 18th century were at one time deposited with the Historic Manuscripts Commission, but many have since been sold. These records form the subject of the Commission's 'Appendix to the Eighth Report' (1881): a copy of this is available in the searchroom.
Put simply, a manor is an area of landed property, with tenants, held by a single landlord who exercises jurisdiction through various types of manorial courts.
During the Middle Ages, the manor was the main local government and economic unit in a locality (and often the only source of written records), but from the 16th century the authority and nature of manors changed greatly. Manors still exist today but their major responsibilities and powers have all disappeared. Their role in land ownership, for example, was abolished by the Law of Property Act 1922, when copyhold property was turned into freehold property.
Descriptions of how manors operated can be found in Sidney and Beatrice Webb's The Manor and Borough vol. 1 (London 1908). Philip Riden's Record Sources for Local History (Batsford 1987) places manors in the wider context of English local administration. Descriptions of the sorts of records left by manors are given in Denis Stuart's Manorial Records (Philimore 1992) and P.D. Harvey Manorial Records (British Records Association, 1985).
Brief descriptions of manorial records for the counties of Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire and their location, whether in public or private hands, are available on the National Archives online Manorial Documents Register.
Manorial records held at Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire Archives may also be found by typing the name of the manor in the AnyText field in our CALM online catalogue.
Summary histories of specific manors within Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire can be found in the relevant volumes of the Victoria County History on British History Online.
Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire Archives hold a great variety of local maps and plans. Many of them are listed, alphabetically by parish, in the documents below.
A marriage licence was issued so that a marriage could take place without banns being read. Before the Diocese could issue a licence the parties had to sign an allegation, affirming their intention to marry. This allegation would also be accompanied by a bond, an assurance signed by friends or relatives that the couple would be married in a specific church.
The licences for the Archdeaconry of Huntingdon do not survive, but an extensive collection of allegations and bonds (1662-1883) have been deposited at Huntingdonshire Archives (reference no. AH29). An index of these has been produced, listing the papers alphabetically by the groom's surname, a PDF version is available below.
A number of marriage licences survive among the parish records deposited at Cambridgeshire Archives. An indexed transcript is available below.
The main series of records for the Diocese of Ely, however, is held with the Ely Diocesan Archives at Cambridge University Library. This includes:
- registers of marriage licences 1562-1600, 1604-21, 1659 onwards. (1562-82 published in Ely Episcopal Records A. Gibbons, 1891 available in our searchroom.)
- registers of Archdeacon's licences from 1727, bonds, 1703-45, 1745-1875, 1934-53.
- Archdeaconry of Sudbury records (parishes of Ashley-cum-Silverley, Burwell, Cheveley, Chippenham, Wood Ditton, Fordham, Kennett, Kirtling, Landwade, Newmarket All Saints, Snailwell, Soham and Wicken) are held at the Suffolk Archives and include licences 1577-93, 1606-11, 1660-66 recorded in act books; 1683-1839 published in Harleian Society volumes 69-72.
Medical Officers of Health
Medical Officers of Health were an integral part of public health administration after 1875, when the Public Health Act 1875 required each sanitary authority (after 1894 each borough or district council) to appoint a MOH. Medical officers were qualified medical practitioners, but were not usually allowed to practise privately, in order to avoid a possible conflict of interests.
In 1911 Huntingdonshire County Council appointed a full-time County MOH, who collected information from the district MOHs. Medical Officers of Health were required to report to their employing authority on matters of public health interest in their areas. The surviving reports can contain a great deal of interesting information about medical and health issues in particular places.
- Medical Officer of Health - 1913, 1918-20, 1944-64
- School Medical Officer - 1941, 1944-62, 1964
Soke of Peterborough
- Medical Officer of Health - 1964
Huntingdon and Peterborough County
- County and Principal School Medical Officers - 1965-71
- Peterborough City - 1939,1954-55,1957-70
- Huntingdon Borough - 1877-1971
- Various other districts - 1961-71
Notifications of Births and Deaths
The Notification of Births (Extension) Act of 1915 made compulsory the notification to the MOH of the birth of every child.
- Hunts county returns and registers of notifications of births, 1919-1966
- Huntingdon RDC registers of notifications of births 1915-20 and deaths 1875-1937
- St Neots RDC registers of notifications of births 1917-1925
- Soke of Peterborough registers of notifications of births 1941-1966 and deaths 1944-66
- Cambridgeshire County Council MOH reports: 1918-1973
- Isle of Ely MOH reports: 1920, 1922-1964
- Cambridge Borough MOH reports: 1912-1914, 1934, 1946-7, 1949-72
- MOH reports on the Sanitary Condition of the Borough of Cambridge 1875-1949]
- South Cambridgeshire RDC MOH reports: 1951-66, 1968-69
- Chesterton RDC MOH reports: 1887-1938, 1941-1971
- Chesterton Union MOH reports: 1887-1893
- Swavesey RDC MOH reports : 1922, 1924-29, 1931
- Newmarket MRDC MOH reports: 1895-1938, 1941-1967
- Newmarket Rural Sanitary Authority MOH reports: 1874-1894
Notifications of births and deaths:
- Register of notifications of births in Cambridge 1937-60, 1962-63, 1966, 1968. (closed to public inspection until 50 years old).
Methodists are Protestant evangelicals, laying stress on personal experience of the forgiveness of sins, and on the authority of the Bible. Like many other evangelical movements, Methodism has split many times over the course of its history: secessions from the main body include the Methodist New Connexion, the Primitive Methodist Connexion, the Bible Christians, the Protestant Methodists, and the United Methodist Free Churches. The New Connexion, the Bible Christians and the United Methodist Free Churches reunited in 1907 as the United Methodist Church.
In 1932 the Wesleyans, the Primitives and the United Methodists became a single organisation.
The supreme governing body of the church is the Methodist Conference. Beneath that the church is comprised of Districts, each with its own synod, and beneath those are Circuits - groups of societies (churches and chapels) which share staff and ministers.
We hold original documents of:
- Cambridge Wesleyan Circuit including chapels in Cambridge, Chesterton Cottenham, Foxton, Histon, Longstanton, Meldreth, Orwell, Quy, Toft, Royston, Swaffham, Waterbeach, Whaddon and Willingham
- Cambridge Primitive Methodist Circuit including chapels in Cambridge, Childerley Gate, Dry Drayton, Fen Ditton, Haslingfield, Sawston
- Ely Circuit including chapels in Coveney, Downham, Ely, Haddenham, Littleport, Brandon Bank (Norfolk), Sedge Fen (Suffolk)
- Fenland Circuit including chapels in Benwick,,Chatteris , Doddington, Guyhirn Manea, March, Outwell, Upwell
- Mildenhall Circuit
- Newmarket Circuit
- Soham Circuit
- Thetford Circuit
- Wickhambrook Circuit including chapels Ashley, Burwell, Dullingham, Fordham, Isleham, Kirtling, Newmarket, Soham, Wicken,Barrow (Suffolk), Bernadiston Chapel (Suffolk), Cheverington (Suffolk), Cowlinge Chapel (Suffolk), Dalham (Suffolk), Exning, Freckenham (Suffolk), Icklingham (Suffolk), Kentford (Suffolk), Mildenhall (Suffolk), Beckrow, Burnt Fen, Holywell Row,West Row, Gross Bank Chapel, Moulton, Ousden (Suffolk), Tuddenham (Suffolk), Wickhambrook (Suffolk), Saxon Street, (Suffolk)
- Wisbech Circuit including chapels in Elm, Fridaybridge, Guyhirn, Harold Bridge, Leverington, March Murrow, Parson Drove, Tholomas Drove (Wisbech St. Mary), Tydd Gote Tydd St. Giles, Wisbech, Wisbech St. Mary, Long Sutton (Lincolnshire) Sutton St. Mary (Lincolnshire), Tydd St. Mary (Lincolnshire) South Eau Bank (Whaplode, Lincolnshire), Emneth (Norfolk), Kirkgate Street Walsoken, Norfolk), Marshland St. James (Norfolk),Tilney Fen End (Tilney St. Lawrence, Norfolk), Tilney St. Lawrence (Norfolk) Walpole Highway (Norfolk), Walpole March (Norfolk), Walpole St. Andrew (Norfolk), Walton Highway (Norfolk), West Walton (Norfolk)
Some Cambridgeshire chapel records are held at the County Record Office in Huntingdon, as they were on Huntingdonshire-based circuits:
- Huntingdon Methodist Circuit includes chapels in Fen Drayton and Papworth Everard
- St. Ives Circuit includes records relating to Swavesey chapel
John Wesley (1703-1791), the founder of the Methodist movement, visited Huntingdonshire many times. His first recorded visit was to Godmanchester in the winter of 1774; Methodist chapels followed at Huntingdon in 1779, St Ives in 1792, and St Neots in 1794. By 1851 Methodism was the largest nonconformist group in the county, boasting 43 chapels. We hold original documents of:
- Alconbury Wesleyan Chapel
- Catworth Wesleyan Chapel
- Earith Wesleyan Methodist Church
- Easton (Wesleyan) Methodist Chapel
- Fenstanton Primitive Methodist Church
- Great Gidding (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- Hilton (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- Huntingdon (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- Huntingdon [and St Ives] Wesleyan Methodist Circuit
- Huntingdonshire Mission Circuit
- Needingworth (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- Over (Primitive) Methodist Church
- Ramsey Heights (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- Kings Ripton (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- St Ives (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- St Ives (East Street) Primitive Methodist Chapel
- St Ives Primitive Methodist Circuit
- St Neots Primitive Methodist Chapel
- St Neots Wesleyan Chapel
- Sawtry Wesleyan Methodist Guild
- Somersham (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- Stibbington Methodist Chapel
- Upwood Wesleyan Chapel
- Warboys (Wesleyan) Methodist Church
- Woodston Primitive Chapel
Some of the documents of these churches are closed to public access. In addition to these records, we also hold microfilm copies of some other Methodist records.
The militia was an armed force raised by the county for national defence. During the Middle Ages all local men aged between 16 and 60 were liable to perform this military service.
Their arms and equipment were provided by landowners, and formal inspections of the men were known as musters. In 1660 the militia forces were placed under the command of the county's Lord Lieutenant, and in 1757 the organisation of the militia was updated. There are two Gibson Guides, 'Tudor and Stuart Muster Rolls' and 'Militia Lists and Musters', which provide useful background information.
In 1850 voluntary service was introduced which changed the character of the militia completely. For post-1850 forces, please see the Army entry.
Militia muster rolls for 1522-1640 are held at the National Archives in Kew. Photocopies of the muster rolls for 1595 and 1607 are available here (accession 2474/1-6).
The position of Lord Lieutenant still exists today, although his duties today are mostly ceremonial. Nineteenth century papers concerning him can be found in the Hinchingbrooke Collection. If you are interested in the Lord Lieutenant's role during the 20th century, you may consult a file of letters and papers concerning Huntingdonshire's Lord Lieutenant 1919-1933 (HCP/11/1937/1).
The list below details records of the Cambridgeshire and other militia forces available at Cambridgeshire Archives.