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There are eight memorial windows. That on the East, erected by Mr. George Denison in memory of his mother, Charlotte, who died July 19th, 1875. The West window to the memory of Maria, wife of John Empson, Esq., of Yokefleet, who died Jan. 1st, 1869. Three on the North side: the first to the memories of Alice Empson, who died at York, Jan. 29th, 1869, and of her husband, John Henry Empson, who died at Ilkley, Aug. 29th, 1881; the second to that of the Rev. John Empson, of Yokefleet, who died July 21st, 1861, and of Margaret, his wife, who died Oct. 6th, 1820; the third by the late Mr. Empson and his children in 1881.

Three on the South side were erected to the memories respectively of Blanche Saltmarshe, who died April 21st, 1880; of Arthur William Simpson, who died March 23rd, 1869; also of Lucia Simpson, who died March 31st, 1876; also of Philip Henry Simpson, who died Feb. 14th, 1878; and of Mary Ann Mitchell, wife of Alfred Small, who died Aug. 16th, 1867.

The parsonage was built in 1885, the Ecclesiastical Commissioners providing the funds. The Register dates from 1770.

Vicars curates. The list of vicars previous to the Reformation has been already given. For over 200 years after that event there was no regular incumbent, the service being conducted by a minister from Howden.

The Rev. John Mallison seems to have been the first curate of Laxton, being licensed on March 14th, 1673; he was also vicar of of Hemingbro' and curate of Eastrington, Barmby-on-the-Marsh, and Barlby, being, to quote Mr. Burton, "one of those Yorkshire pluralists of whom the late Sir Tatton Sykes used to tell many good stories how they eagerly grasped at small livings and curacies, and of their manifold devices to get as many services as possible into a Sunday. The nag on which they hurried from one village to another was called a Jerusalem pony, and a hard time it had of it, poor beast."95

Mallison died 20th April, 1793, and was succeeded by the Rev. Robert Poole, also a non-resident. After the endowments of 1797, 1800, and 1809 he received as stipend the interest on the £1000, and signed the Chapel Terrier as curate about 1810.

Mr. Poole was succeeded in 1813 by the Rev. Thomas Allanson, who was curate-in-charge for two years, being followed by the Rev. R. Thomas, 1814-1821; Rev. Edward Ward, 1821-1832; Rev. Robert Poole (son probably of the former curate), 1832-1836; Rev. George Taylor, 1836-1838; Rev. J. Sell, 1838-1842; Rev. William Smith, 1843-1847.

As at this period Laxton was a chapel-of-ease to Howden, the above-mentioned ministers were probably only curates in charge

94 Mother of the first Mrs. Saltmarshe.

95 Burton's Hemingbro', p. 120.

under the Vicar of Howden; the Rev. E. Warde and the Rev. W. Smith seem, however, to have been resident in the township.

In 1847 the Rev. Philip Simpson, owner of Metham, became incumbent, but resigned in 1850, and was succeeded by the Rev. William Hutchinson, who in 1855 was appointed Vicar of Howden, a position he held for nearly half-a-century. Mr. Hutchinson, who was a well-known antiquarian, contributed two or three interesting papers on Howdenshire to the Journal of the York. Archæological Society, on the East Riding Committees of which he sat for many years.

In 1855 the Rev. Richard Ellis became curate of Laxton, and on the formation of the new parish in 1858 was appointed the first vicar.

The stipend at this time was only about £50 a year, arising out of the sums given from Queen Anne's bounty; but in 1859 Mr. Saltmarshe gave £30 a year extra, charged on Eland's farm, the house belonging to which he sold the following year as vicarage. In return for this endowment the advowson became his.

In 1868 Mr. Ellis resigned. The living was then increased by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners to £300 a year, the advowson passing to the Archbishop of York.

The Rev. Edward Simpson, son of Mr. Philip Simpson, succeeded Mr. Ellis as Vicar of Laxton, a position he has now held for 37 years, and one which his parishioners trust he will hold for many more. 96

Bequests for sermons. Matthew Pickering by his will, dated 25th April, 1688, among other bequests, left 40/- a year to the preaching minister at Laxton, by two half-yearly payments at Lady-day and Michaelmas; also 10/- a year for preaching an anniversary sermon at Laxton every St. Matthias-day, chargeable on his land there.

Arthur Saltmarshe, 97 by will dated 23rd January, 1702, left 40/yearly for a minister to preach four sermons in Laxton Chapel on 26th April, 26th July, 26th October, and 26th January, except a fair should happen at any time within 15 miles of Saltmarshe on any of these dates, in which case the sermon was to be preached the day following. The amount to be charged on a house and croft at Saltmarshe.

Joseph Graybourne, by his will dated 1723, gave 6/8 to the minister at Laxton for preaching a sermon annually on New Year's day.

Mrs. Mary Jewit of Saltmarshe, by her will dated 1758, gave 10/a year for a sermon to be preached in Laxton Chapel on October 8th.

96 The writer is indebted to him for much information about the church. 97 Second son of Philip Saltmarshe of Saltmarshe, who died in 1693. As he was on his death-bed when his will was made, these exact details show the importance that was attached to sermons in those days.


The Wesleyan Chapel was built by public subscription in 1848, the principal donors being Benjamin Hill and George Eland of Laxton, David Goundril of Metham, William Crow of Howden, and Thomas Jaques of Faxfleet, who, with several others, were appointed trustees that year.98

The good feeling shown by the members of this congregation to the church has always been a pleasing feature of the village history, and, as has been mentioned above, Mr. Hill was for many years one of the church wardens.


Though a Sunday School had existed from an earlier date, no secular instruction was given in Laxton before the middle of the last century, those villagers who wished their children to be educated having to send them all the way to Howden.

Some 50 years ago Mr. Saltmarshe found in one field seven of his labourers who could neither read nor write, a fact which induced him to found a small school in the parish. This for some years was held in the Old Hall at Saltmarshe, then unoccupied, but was removed about 1860 to Laxton, where it was held in the Manor House till 1872.

The present building was erected that year by public subscription, a further class room being built by the present vicar and his father in 1874.


Dunn's Charity. John Dunn, draper, of Howden, by his will dated 25th May, 1628, left £3 annually for putting out to apprentice poor children born in Howden, £2 for those born in Laxton, £2 for those born in Saltmarshe, &c.; and by indenture of 22nd January, 1656, Thomas Athorp, the executor, charged the Bennison closes in Laxton, the testator's property, with the annual sum of £8 for carrying out the above bequests.

In 1824 this fund was administered by Mr. Saltmarshe, and was £76 12s. in credit, owing to so few applications being made for apprenticing; subsequently the money has been regularly paid to the overseers of the townships concerned.99

Higdon's Charity. John Higdon, of Laxton, by his will dated August 1st, 1641, left 1 annually to the poor of Laxton chargeable on the "Fogclose."

98 The writer is indebted to Mr. John Biggs for procuring him this information and for other assistance.

99 Report of Charity Commissioners, Vol. 11, Jan. 24, 1824.

This is the charity which is headed as "anonymous" in the 1824 report, and which the commissioners could obtain no information about, but they had not seen Mr. Broadley's title deeds.

Marshall's Charity. John Marshall, of York, by his will dated 19th July, 1669, left all his yearly rents and profits accruing from his dwelling-house in Skeldergate, York, for putting out to apprentice poor boys born in Laxton.

Pickering's Charity. Matthew Pickering, by his will dated April 25th, 1688, left, in addition to the bequests for sermons already mentioned, 10/- annually to the poor of Laxton, "chargeable on his house and garth near the chapel."

Tune's Charity. The returns of 1786 mention an annual rent charge of 5/- given by one Peter Tune, the particulars of which are unknown.

The writer has been unable to find out the origin of this charity, but Peter Tune was living in 1719, when he appears in a deed of partition as owning a few acres of land in the South fields.

Two or three small poor houses, now fallen into decay, were bought by Mr. Saltmarshe in 1899.

An Old Dickering Song, "The Seven Stars."



HEN I was living in the East Riding, my attention was occasionally arrested by a curious old song I used to hear sung at rent dinners and other gatherings of a similar nature. This old song was popularly known by the name of "The Seven Stars"; there was a ring of bygone times about the words and tune, and I determined, if possible, to find its history. Upon inquiry I found it to be traditional, and I was unable to trace it back for more than about one hundred years. It seemed to belong exclusively to a small portion of the Wapentake of Dickering, namely, the district between Bridlington and Lowthorpe. I found no trace of it anywhere else.1 Having heard the song several times, and paying particular attention to the words and tune, I was able to write both down, and so put on record a singular old ditty.

A copy of the words I sent to Professor Skeat, of Cambridge, and in his reply to my letter respecting this old song, says :

"This is a curious song.... I do not think it is much older than 1800, probably about the end of the

1 Quite recently I have been informed that on one occasion, many years ago, "The Seven Stars was sung in Hull.

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