Catalogue description Rigby, Rowley and Cooper, Solicitors, King Street, Newcastle.

This record is held by Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Staffordshire County Record Office

Details of D3272
Reference: D3272
Title: Rigby, Rowley and Cooper, Solicitors, King Street, Newcastle.

These solicitors had a number of important North Staffordshire clients, and for this reason, the collection will be particularly useful for a study of aspects of North Staffordshire history. Notably the Davenports and the Mintons, two great 19th century pottery families, were among the firm's clients, although very little has survived in this collection to reflect the business activities of these two firms beyond title deeds to the sites of their manufactories. The Davenport papers are particularly useful however for the personal history of the family and also in showing how the 19th century estates of William and John Davenport at Maer Hall and Westwood Hall were built up.


In addition, there were dealings with the Kinnersleys of Clough Hall and the Kirkhams and Hazlehursts of Chell, the latter family having a number of mining interests in the Chell area. Another important client was John Smith of Great Fenton, and a fine series of deeds for his Great Fenton estate survives from the 16th century. The papers in this part of the collection are probably the most representative of a 19th century client with estate and mining interests. John Tomlinson of Cliffe Ville was another notable client and the marriage of his daughter with Sir Lovelace Stamer has brought into the collection deeds to Stamer properties both in North Staffordshire and at Llwyndu in Abergavenny. A fine collection of 17th and 18th century deeds relating to the Wicksted estate in Nantwich has also survived in the papers of the Wicksted/Tollet family.


In addition, the collection contains a series of 19th century bankruptcy commissions relating to North Staffordshire tradesmen, as well as a series of late 18th century commissions for London tradesmen, the latter surviving as a result of a client's role as bankruptcy commissioner.


Among the miscellaneous deeds in the collection is an unexpected group of mediaeval deeds for Bradnop, and also for Hanley. This firm also acted as stewards to the Manor of Newcastle and this has ensured the survival within the collection of a large number of copy court rolls for properties particularly in Penkhull and Hanley.

Date: c.19th - 20th century
Held by: Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Staffordshire County Record Office, not available at The National Archives
Language: English

Rigby, Rowley and Cooper, Newcastle, Staffordshire, West Midlands, solicitors

Physical description: 12 Sub-Fonds
  • Smith, Charles John, 1804-1874, of Great Fenton, Staffordshire
  • Davenport family of Longport, Staffordshire, potters
  • Miton family, earthenware manufacturers, of Penkhull, Staffordshire,
  • Great Fenton, Staffordshire, West Midlands
  • Longport, Staffordshire, West Midlands
  • Penkhull, Staffordshire, West Midlands
  • Leek, Staffordshire, West Midlands
  • Newcastle, Staffordshire, West Midlands
Administrative / biographical background:

Although it is known that the history of this firm is much older, the first printed reference to them is to Thomas Ward, attorney, of Brunswick Street in 1818. By 1834, the firm had moved to King Street as Thomas and John Ward. S. H. Cooper became a partner of the firm in the 1870s, thus giving them the title of Wards and Coopers, and a brief interval as Bulleid, Cooper & Co., followed in the 1890s. By 1924, the firm was known as Cooper & Co.

Link to NRA Record:

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