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Somerset, family, Dukes of Beaufort

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The summary includes a brief description of the collection(s) (usually including the covering dates of the collection), the name of the archive where they are held, and reference information to help you find the collection.

Date: 1200-2000
History:

Charles Somerset (c.1460-1526), natural son of Henry Beaufort, 2nd Duke of Somerset (executed 1464), married in 1492 Elizabeth, daughter and heir of William Herbert (c.1455-91), 2nd Earl of Pembroke and Earl of Huntingdon. William Herbert (d. 1469), created Earl of Pembroke in 1468, had inherited Raglan Castle (Monmouthshire), and had acquired estates in Monmouthshire (Chepstow, etc, with Tidenham in Gloucestershire), Breconshire (Crickhowell and Tretower), Glamorganshire (Gower and Kilvey), Pembrokeshire (surrendered in 1479) and Somerset (Dunster: later restored to the Luttrell family). Charles Somerset was created Baron Herbert in 1503 and Earl of Worcester in 1514. The second Earl of Worcester (d. 1549) acquired Tintern Abbey lands (mainly Monmouthshire, but including Woolaston in Gloucestershire) in 1537, and the reversion of Chalton (Hampshire) in 1542. The Troy (Monmouthshire) estate was purchased in 1584 but settled on a younger son.

The 4th Earl (c.1550-1628) purchased Badminton (Gloucestershire) in 1612, and settled this property on his younger son Thomas (d. 1649), later Viscount Somerset of Cashel. The 5th Earl (d. 1646) married in 1600 Anne Russell, daughter and heir of Lord Russell, son of the 2nd Earl of Bedford, through whom properties including Acton (Middlesex: settled on a younger son), Chulmleigh and Denbury (Devon) and Chaldon Herring (Dorset) came to the Somerset family. The 5th Earl also acquired Poston (Herefordshire: again later settled on a younger son) and the manor of Monmouth. He was created Marquess of Worcester in 1643, but suffered the destruction of Raglan Castle and its library and the sequestration of his estates.

The 3rd Marquess of Worcester (1629-1700) restored the family fortunes, inheriting Badminton from his cousin Elizabeth Somerset, daughter of Viscount Somerset of Cashel, in 1655, and purchasing Troy from his uncle Charles Somerset in 1663. He made Badminton, which he largely rebuilt, the principal seat, and was created Duke of Beaufort in 1682. The 2nd Duke (1684-1714) married in 1706 Rachel, daughter and co-heir of the second Earl of Gainsborough (see Cavendish-Bentinck, Dukes of Portland; Noel, Earls of Gainsborough): the Beaufort moiety was sold in 1742. The third Duke (1707-45) married Frances Scudamore, but her Holme Lacy (Herefordshire) estate later descended through her daughter by her second husband (see Fitzalan-Howard, Dukes of Norfolk).

The 4th Duke (1709-56) married in 1740 Elizabeth, sister and heir of Norborne Berkeley, Baron Botetourt (d. 1770), through whom estates in Gloucestershire (Stoke Gifford, Stapleton, etc), Wiltshire (Hilmarton), Norfolk (Brancaster) and Suffolk were eventually inherited. During the time of the 5th Duke (1765-1803) the outlying estates of Chalton, Chaldon Herring, Chulmleigh and Denbury, together with Beaufort Buildings (Strand, Middlesex: the site of Worcester (previously Russell) House) and the former Berkeley estates in Norfolk and Suffolk, were sold, but the Gloucestershire and Monmouthshire estates were extended (notably by the purchase of the Usk and Trelleck (Monmouthshire) estate from Lord Clive in 1770).

The Stapleton estate was sold in 1859-65, and Tidenham and Woolaston in 1872. During the time of the 9th Duke (succeeded 1899, d. 1924) further and more extensive sales took place, leaving a reduced Badminton estate and some Glamorganshire property.

The 5th Duke was executor of Lady Anne Somerset (d. 1763), daughter of the 1st Duke and wife of the 2nd Earl of Coventry, through which connection some Coventry papers came to Badminton House.

Estates in 1883: Gloucs 16,610 acres, Wilts 1,939 acres, Monmouthshire 27,299 acres, Breconshire 4,019 acres, Glamorganshire 1,218 acres, total 51,085 acres worth £56,226 a year.

Places:
  • Badminton House, Gloucestershire
  • Beaufort, Brecknockshire
  • Bedwellty, Monmouthshire
  • Brancaster, Norfolk
  • Burgate, Suffolk
  • Chaldon Herring, Dorset
  • Chalton, Hampshire
  • Chepstow, Monmouthshire
  • Chulmleigh, Devon
  • Crickhowell, Brecknockshire
  • Croome Court, Worcestershire
  • Denbury, Devon
  • Dixton, Monmouthshire
  • Dixton Hadnock, Monmouthshire
  • Dunster, Somerset
  • Great Badminton, Gloucestershire
  • Hawkesbury, Gloucestershire
  • Heythrop, Oxfordshire
  • Hilmarton, Wiltshire
  • Holme Lacy, Herefordshire
  • Kilvey, Glamorgan
  • Kingswood, Gloucestershire
  • Littleton Drew, Wiltshire
  • Llangattock, Brecknockshire
  • London
  • Loughor, Glamorgan
  • Mitchel Troy, Monmouthshire
  • Netheravon, Wiltshire
  • Oystermouth, Glamorgan
  • Portgaseg, Monmouthshire
  • Poston, Herefordshire
  • Raglan, Monmouthshire
  • Richmond, Surrey
  • Snitterfield, Warwickshire
  • Stapleton, Gloucestershire
  • Stoke Gifford, Gloucestershire
  • Swansea, Glamorgan
  • Tidenham, Gloucestershire
  • Trelleck, Monmouthshire
  • Tretower, Brecknockshire
  • Troy House, Monmouthshire
  • Usk, Monmouthshire
  • Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Woolaston, Gloucestershire
Sources of authority: Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts, Guide to principal estate and family collections L-W, 1999.
Name authority reference: GB/NNAF/F88890 (Former ISAAR ref: GB/NNAF/F10798 )
Collections
  Description Held by Reference Further information
1
13th cent-20th cent: Gloucs (Badminton House in Great Badminton, Kingswood, Stoke Gifford, Woolaston, etc) and Wilts (Hilmarton, Netheravon, etc) deeds, manorial records, rentals, accounts, estate, colliery and household papers 13th-20th cent, deeds and estate papers rel to Devon (Denbury, etc), Dorset (Chaldon Herring, etc), Hants (Chalton, etc) and Herefs (Poston, etc) 16th 18th cent, London 15th-19th cent and Norfolk (Brancaster, etc) and Suffolk (Burgate, etc) 14th-18th cent, estate papers rel to Welsh properties (Brecknockshire, Glamorgan, Monmouthshire, etc) 16th-19th cent, Irish estate papers of Sir Thomas Somerset 1620-22 and Bahamas estate corresp 1733-85, with papers rel to estates and houses of the Berkeley and Coventry families 14th-18th cent, Heythrop (Oxon) lease and schedule 1819-26, etc
Gloucestershire Archives
NRA 6282 Somerset

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96a]
2
1658-1920: Tidenham and Woolaston (Gloucs) legal, manorial and estate papers
Gloucestershire Archives
NRA 5922 Jane

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96c]
3
1713-1784: Gloucs (Cross Hands petty-sessional division) magistracy papers
Gloucestershire Archives
NRA 9255 Cross Hands PS

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96d]
4
15th cent-20th cent: Gloucs (Badminton and Stoke Gifford) and London household papers 17th-20th cent, inventories and papers rel to Netheravon (Wilts) 1758, Raglan (Monmouthshire) castle 17th cent, Troy House in Mitchel Troy (Monmouthshire) c1687-1700 and Williamsburg (Virginia) 1770 and Somerset family, legal, trust, official, political and other papers 15th-20th cent, incl papers rel to Gloucs and Monmouthshire affairs 16th-20th cent, London and Richmond (Surrey) establishment books of the Duke of Ormonde 1712-15 and Snitterfield (Warwicks) and Croome Court (Worcs) household papers (Coventry family) 1698-1745
Badminton Muniments
NRA 6282 Somerset

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96e]
5
1672-1709: misc Gloucs (Hawkesbury) and Wilts (Littleton Drew) estate plans
Gloucestershire Archives
6
1696-1713: Badminton House in Great Badminton (Gloucs) planting lists, etc
British Library, Manuscript Collections
7
17th cent-18th cent: Hants (Chalton, etc) deeds and estate papers
Hampshire Archives and Local Studies
NRA 25617 Clarke-Jervoise
8
15th cent-16th cent: Devon (Chulmleigh, Denbury, etc) manorial court rolls and papers
Devon Archives and Local Studies Service (South West Heritage Trust)
NRA 9813 Russell

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [90d]
9
1731-1743: Holme Lacy (Herefs) rentals and accounts
The National Archives
NRA 42064 Scudamore
10
16th cent-18th cent: Norfolk (Brancaster, etc) and Suffolk (Burgate, etc) deeds, legal, manorial and estate papers
Norfolk Record Office
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96g]
11
1840: Littleton Drew (Wilts) estate maps
Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre
NRA 1556 Mullings

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96f]
12
1975-1982: Brecknockshire and Glamorganshire (Swansea, etc) estate rentals and day books
Swansea University: Richard Burton Archives
NRA 42086 Morris
13
13th cent-20th cent: Brecknockshire (Crickhowell, Tretower, etc), Glamorgan (Oystermouth, Swansea, etc), Monmouthshire (Chepstow, Trelleck, etc) and misc Gloucs (Tidenham, Woolaston, etc) deeds, manorial records, estate, mining and Somerset family papers
National Library of Wales: Department of Collection Services
NRA 12100 Somerset

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96h]
14
13th cent-20th cent: Brecknockshire (Crickhowell, Llangattock, Tretower, etc), Glamorganshire (Oystermouth, Swansea, etc) and Monmouthshire (Portgaseg, Raglan, Usk, etc) deeds and manorial records 13th-20th cent, with accounts of the Herbert Earls of Pembroke 15th cent, Dunster (Somerset) estate accounts 1461-79, etc
National Library of Wales: Department of Collection Services
NRA 12101 Badminton Manorial

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96h]
15
c1823-1835: Glamorgan colliery papers
Glamorgan Archives
NRA 10781

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [100f]
16
mainly 19th cent: misc Monmouthshire (Chepstow, etc) manorial and estate papers
Gwent Archives
NRA 6968

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96i]
17
c1733-1838: Monmouthshire (Dixton, etc) legal and estate papers c1733-1838, with Glamorgan (Oystermouth, Swansea, etc) maps and surveys 1803, 1830
West Glamorgan Archive Service
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96j]
18
1824-1899: Somerset family settlements and trust deeds
Gloucestershire Archives
NRA 6282 Somerset

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96b]
19
1620-1717: Somerset family legal papers rel to the jointure of the Countess of Dundonald (Dowager Duchess of Beaufort) 1620-1717, incl Chalton (Hants) rental 1678
The National Archives
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96k]
20
1631-1709, 1746-1749: Somerset family corresp
Oxford University: Bodleian Library, Special Collections
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96l]
21
c1672-1800: maps of Kingswood Forest, Hawkesbury Woods and Littleton Drew; survey plan of Badminton House
Gloucestershire Archives
22
c1702-1712: Somerset family papers
Yorkshire Archaeological and Historical Society
NRA 12923 Dukes Leeds

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [78a]
23
1774-1805: letters to Charlotte, Duchess of Beaufort, from her mother the Marchioness of Stafford
University of Birmingham: Cadbury Research Library: Special Collections
NRA 29832 Leveson-Gower

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96m]
24
1729: copy journals of the 3rd Duke of Beaufort
Gloucestershire Archives
NRA 6282 Somerset

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [96a]

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Related record creators
  Record creator Description of relationship Dates Category of relationship
1
The second Duke of Beaufort married Rachel daughter and coheir of the second Earl of Gainsborough in 1706
1706
Family