Catalogue description RELIGIOUS SOCIETY OF FRIENDS/Quakers

This record is held by Cumbria Archive and Local Studies Centre, Barrow

Details of BDFCF
Reference: BDFCF

Boxes 1-3: Monthly Meeting minutes.


Box 4: Women's Meeting minutes and records of births, marriages and burials.


Burial notes Height (Cartmel) 1833-1964


Box 5: Records of burials.


Account books 1675-1975


Boxes 6 and 7: Accounts and trust records.


Box 8: Records of membership.


Box 9: Miscellaneous records.


Some yearly meeting minutes + 1703-1832 (ms copies)


Boxes 10 and 11: Yearly and Quarterly Meeting records.


Boxes 12 and 13: Colthouse Preparative Meeting records.


Minute books 1798-1976


Box 14: Height and Cartmel Preparative Meeting records.


Box 15: Swarthmoor Preparative Meeting records.


Box 16: Swarthmoor Monthly Meeting records.


Box 17: Colthouse (Hawkshead); Height and Cartmel; and Swarthmoor Preparative Meeting records.

Date: 1676-1989
Held by: Cumbria Archive and Local Studies Centre, Barrow, not available at The National Archives
Language: English

Religious Society of Friends, Cumbria

Physical description: 20 boxes
Immediate source of acquisition:

Records deposited by Mr. J. Anderson, Custodian of Records to Swarthmore Monthly Meeting on 12 November 1982.

  • Cumbria
Administrative / biographical background:

The Religious Society of Friends has, as its smallest unit of organisation, the Preparative Meeting. Members hold meetings for worship, every "First Day of the Week," with further meetings on appointed weekdays. In the early days, they met generally in the houses of individual members, but purpose-built meeting houses were legalised in 1689. Representatives from local Preparative Meetings met regularly at the Monthly Meeting. In addition, representatives from the various Monthly Meetings would meet four times a year, to form the Quarterly Meeting, which was generally organised by county. At a national level, representatives of the various Quarterly Meetings met at the Yearly Meeting.


Swarthmore Monthly Meeting originally included the Preparative Meetings of Height (meeting house built in 1677, closed 1910, sold 1922); Colthouse (meeting house built 1688) and Swarthmoor (meeting house built 1688). Cartmel meeting house was added in 1859. A "mission meeting" under the aegis of Swarthmore Preparative Meeting was established in Ulverston in 1862; this acquired premises in New Church Lane in 1886, which were eventually disposed of in 1973. Ambleside Preparative Meeting was settled in 1957; the present premises were rented in 1964, and purchased in 1973. The meeting house at Rookhow was built in 1725, solely to accommodate the monthly meetings. The ancient burial ground at Sunbrick, to the South of Swarthmoor, was first used in 1648; (the first Quaker burial was in 1654).


Until 1804, the Swarthmore Monthly Meeting was part of the Lancashire Quarterly Meeting. However, in that year, Swarthmore Monthly Meeting joined the Westmorland Quarterly Meeting, for convenience.

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