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the borough from being dragged back, and again chained to the soil at the mandate of his lord.* The abolition of these barbarous customs by the palatine sovereign, Bishop Pudsey, is a proof of the liberality of his character, and shews him to have been a man centuries in advance of the dark age in which he lived.
In the year 1153 Bishop Pudsey received and enjoyed the rents of the borough of Sunderland, the passage across the river by the ferry-boat, the fisheries, and the duties and profits accruing from ships, vessels, &c,plying to and within the port.*
In 1183, " Sunderland is at farm, and renders one hundred shillings; Roger de Audry renders, for the milldam built on the land of Sunderland, one mark.f"
In feudal times mills were very valuable property, on account of the tenants, within the boroughs or manors in which they were situated, being bound to grind a certain quantity of corn at them—all at least that was consumed within the borough or manor, and consequently to pay oppressive multure. The service was called, in Latin, sccta molendini, and secta multime; or sequela molendini, and sequela multurro; and, in English, suit of mill. In 1282, the burgesses of Morpeth bound themselves and their heirs for ever not to grind the corn which grew upon the land which they farmed of William, son of Thomas de Greystock, anywhere but at the manorial mill of Morpeth.J Until a late period, the inhabitants of the city of Manchester were compelled to grind their corn at the mills of the lord of the manor, Sir Oswald Mosley,
* Spearman's Enquiry, p. 24. t Bolrton Buke. J Hodgson's Northumberland, part 2 vol. 2, page 449. Bart., of Ancoats, in the county of Lancaster; and this relic of feudalism was only abolished upon the inhabitants giving Sir Oswald compensation for his loss.
It appears that at Cleadon, in the Bishop of Durham's (now, 1857, the Ecclesiastical Commissioners,) manor of Chester, the family of Chamber, of Cleadon Hall, (now the property of Mr. Gourley, of Bishopwearmouth,) extensive copyholders at that place and Whitburn, established a mill of their own, in opposition to the lord, whereupon a trial, the Bishop of Durham (Thomas Morton) versus Chamber took place at Durham, 30th April, 13 Charles L, 1637, when the custom of grinding at the bishop's mill at Whitburn was established, and the defendant restrained from grinding his corn at a mill upon his copyhold land there.*
• Hutchinson's History of Durham, II., 500. The family of Chamher were frequently at variance with the bishops and clergy. Whether for nonconformity, or from what other cause, we know not, hut several of them were huricd in the stackyard attached to their farm house at Cleadon. According to the survey of 30, Queen Elizabeth, 1587, they were, so far as regards the rental of their copyhold estates, lords of Whitburn and Cleadon, besides which they held property in Boldon (and, as will be noticed hereafter, perhaps in Bishopwearmouth). The following are extracts from that survey:—
At this distance of time it is impossible by the glim. mering light afforded by the Boldon Buke, to trace accurately the situation of the ancient manorial water corn mill at Sunderland. It cannot have been established upon the river, because the building of a dam there would have proved a serious obstacle to the navigation
£ 8. d. Ralphe Ffell an ancester of
Charles Richard Fell, Esq.,
Solicitor, Sunderland .... 040 0 George Bee ....... ...... 0 20 0 Steven Kaye ............ 0 20 0 Robert Aire. ......... 041 6 William Huchinson ... ... 040 0 John Meryman (an ancester
of the family of Merriman
of Boldon, Cleadon, &c.).. 040 0 John Lethanye............ 0 0 8 Leon'de Pilkington [brother of James Pilkington, the first protestant Bishop of Durham. He was rector of Whitburn, and built the
£ s. d. house now Whitburn Hall, the seat of Sir Hedworth Williamson, Bart., upon his copyhold land adjoining the
rectory house] .......... 0 12 0 Richerd Atkinson ........ 0 20 0
Tennt for terme of years :
indenture, dated 23 Decem-
One Wynde Myll, rent .. 040 0
Courts in Whitborne, afore-
£ 8. d. Thomas Plumpton ........
3 7 5
Jennett Hodge and Robt.
0 6 8 Jennet Chamber ...... 3 7 5 Robert Chamber .......... Willm. Todd ..............
Richard Araye ........ Isabell Mathewe san ancestor
Edward Robyson ...... of Mr. John Matthews, of
Archbalde Atcheson ...... Nicholson Street, Bishop
John IIyne ............... wearmouth] ...........
0 Willm. Jackson .... John Thompson .......... 5 4 6 Henry Mathewe ....
of the port, which bishop Pudsey was anxious to encourage : besides, the rise and fall of the tidal waters was another difficulty in the way sufficient of itself to deter any engineer of that day from attempting it. The probability is that is stood upon land known to have extended eastward, in continuation of the dene or road at the south end of the Town Moor leading to the dock, and across the small stream that divides the parish of Sunderland from the township of Bishopwearmouth, washed away centuries ago by the sea and since regained from it by the barrier beach of the dock. By building a wear across the burn just alluded to, the mill dam would stand upon the bishop's land, partly on the Town Moor of Sunderland, and partly on his Hall Moor or Great Field in Wearmouth.
There is something generally picturesque and poetical in the situation of water mills, and the site of this, on the
£ s. d. £ s. d. Willm. Atkinson 36 1 by Indent, from late BushThomas Robison: 3 3 4 opp Pilkinton ut die. One
Bobcrt Bedlinton 27 . Closo called FfatherleBS
Edward Robison 26 6 filde 23 4
Richard Walshe 33 7 Perquisites of [Halmote]
Thomas Hodge 6 Courts in East-bolden and
Widowo Mathewe 2 6 in West-bolden, aforesaid,
Tennt for terme of years: com. arm 20
Thorn* Shave, gent., holdeth
It affords us much pleasure to add that Thomas Pollard, Esq., of Newcastle-uponTyne, whose wife is a descendant of the ancient family of Chamber, has lately become, by purchase, the proprietor of part of their patrimonial estate at Cleadon, •iter an alienation of upwards of a century and a half. Mr. Pollard subsequently re-sold Cleadon Tower (the ancient seat of the Chamber family) to Mr. J. Y. Gourley, shipowner, Sunderland, who had previously purchased another portion of the
sunny side of what was undoubtedly, at one time, a boscy dene, would be uncommonly so. Snugly sheltered from the northern blasts, the mill with its little loop-hole windows peeping through the vista of trees and brushwood growing wild in the glen, and the thatched cottage of Roger the miller, overhung with ivy intermingled with the woodbine and the sweet-briar; having the sea, with its fleet of merchant ships and vessels sailing to and fro in the distance, would form a landscape particularly lovely.
Ere the lark's early carols salute the new day,
On Sunday bedeck'd in his home-spun array,