Author Topic: Yeoman Farmers - Do They Own Land?  (Read 684 times)

Offline Maiden Stone

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Re: Yeoman Farmers - Do They Own Land?
« Reply #9 on: Friday 17 September 21 15:48 BST (UK) »

Yes I have found similarly, that yeoman farmers didn't necessarily own freeholds, but they did have long leaseholds of maybe 100 years which were inherited by successive generations of the family. Below yeoman I think were husbandman, who probably paid short term rents or gave a certain amount of their produce to the freeholder. Then below that you had graziers who probably just had a few animals which they would graze on the common land or whatever land they could get away with putting them on!

99 years or for 3 lives was typical for farm leases in Lancashire. My family had that type of lease as tenant farmers in the 20th century. My dad could have passed it on to one of his children as the 2nd life and that person could have transferred the lease to one of their children (the 3rd life).

I noticed that my yeoman farmer ancestors (1700s) tended to have the occupation husbandman at marriage  and perhaps at baptisms of elder children. They were yeomen in later records, either inheriting a farm lease from their father or taking one on their own account. A father (aged 73) and married son (aged 37) both had the occupation husbandman on the "Return of Papists" for the parish in 1767. This list of Catholics was compiled by the Anglican curate. The son's wife died 16 years later; she was wife of a yeoman in the burial register.
My dictionary defines husbandman as farmer. It's from Old English "house dweller". The term may have included farm labourers.       
Cowban

Offline Vance Mead

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Re: Yeoman Farmers - Do They Own Land?
« Reply #10 on: Friday 17 September 21 15:49 BST (UK) »
This is quite a lot earlier, but it's a good introduction:

The English Yeoman under Elizabeth and the Early Stuarts, by Mildred Campbell

It was originally published in 1942, but there have been several subsequent editions.
Mead - Herts, Bucks, Essex
Pontifex - Bucks
Goldhurst - London, Middx, Herts
Kellogg/Kelhog - Essex, Cambs

Offline Jon_ni

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Re: Yeoman Farmers - Do They Own Land?
« Reply #11 on: Friday 17 September 21 15:58 BST (UK) »
Freeholders https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forty-shilling_freeholders

Freeholders records are one thing that does survive in areas of Ireland so are online and used due to the scarcity of other documentary sources for the 18th and early 19th centuries.
Freeholders and the voting system went through a lot of electoral reform in the 1800's due to rotten boroughs and landholders creating short leases so their tenants would vote for them.
In Ireland only a Lease of Lives gave you a vote (typically for the unspecified period expiring on the death of the 3rd person named, one of the names used typically being youngest son or a grandson or one of the young Princes/Princesses). A lease for a fixed period eg 25 or 50 years did not entitle a vote. Few of these Freeholders owned their farm, it belonged to the local & sometimes absentee Sir or Lord etc.


Offline PurdeyB

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Re: Yeoman Farmers - Do They Own Land?
« Reply #12 on: Friday 17 September 21 18:36 BST (UK) »
Thanks to everyone for your answers on this. So much really helpful information. I haven't really looked at the son who benefited from the will as he isn't my ancestor so I need to do some work on him.
Boutflower/Boutflour - Northumberland & County Durham
Branfoot - N Yorkshire, Northumberland & County Durham
Horwell - York, E Yorkshire & Lincolnshire
Bettley - N & W Yorkshire

Offline PurdeyB

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Re: Yeoman Farmers - Do They Own Land?
« Reply #13 on: Saturday 16 October 21 07:28 BST (UK) »
You didn't say where he was listed as a farmer, but I have a farmer in Co Durham and managed to track him (and whether he owned or rented the land he worked ) from 1813 to 1827 by looking at land tax assessments which showed who the landowner and occupier was from 1813 through to 1827 - the time frame for my man.

My only experience of these records was in Co Durham and the Durham Records Office catalogue was very helpful as they had transcription lists in the results, followed by (not so helpful cos it took ages but I got there in the end ) Family Search catalogue for the original records

Boo

Thanks for this tip, Boo. I finally had a look at the indexes and my ancestor is there, initially as occupier of land owned by the Bishop of Durham and then as occupier of land owned by a private individual so I've got my answer.
Boutflower/Boutflour - Northumberland & County Durham
Branfoot - N Yorkshire, Northumberland & County Durham
Horwell - York, E Yorkshire & Lincolnshire
Bettley - N & W Yorkshire

Offline Andrew Tarr

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Re: Yeoman Farmers - Do They Own Land?
« Reply #14 on: Monday 18 October 21 10:50 BST (UK) »
Some of my ancestors in Lancashire were yeomen farmers. They were tenants on long leases (usually leases for 3 lives) with security of tenure. They were able to pass the lease on to their heir(s). Wills of some mention leases.

My 3g-grandfather died aged 82 near Ashburton in Devon just after the 1851 census.  He was described as a yeoman, as was his son while children were born and registered in the 1840s.  In 1854 the farm was sold at auction, where the son is described as 'Tenant'.  The family emigrated to southern Ireland soon afterwards.
Tarr, Tydeman, Liversidge, Bartlett, Young