This is intended as much as a hit list for future genealogy as anything else. These Dentons were discovered but did not readily present themselves as direct descendants. The task is to see if and how they might connect to the two main streams we have dealt with in this research. Go on – feel free to get these bolted on!
The family persisted in the Sebergham area as evidenced by entries in an article prepared by M E Kuper, communicated at Carlisle on July 2 1886 and entitled Sebergham Parish Register:
Kuper analyses the register to conclude the occupations of Sebergham locals were as yeomen, farmers, labourers, colliers (colliery at Warnell Fell), weavers, millers, fiddlers, grocers, tailors, basket makers, dish throwers¹ and dealers in earthenware; very often two or three trades were combined.
¹A turner’s lathe was called a throwe so this probably means turners of wooden platters and cups
But the document makes clear that these Dentons were far from parochial, taking wives and occupations from all around the UK. It talks of Thomas Denton (1612-1643) who married Lettice Lougher (from Stafford) and died in 1643 during the great civil war. He succumbed to wounds received at the Battle of Hull where he served as a captain of foot for the Earl of Newcastle and Charles I.
His successor Thomas Denton of Warnell (1638-1697) was judge and recorder for the city of Carlisle. He married Lettice Vachell (1640- ) of Cawley Berkshire. Their portraits by Sir Peter Lely are at the Tullie House Museum & Art Gallery, Carlisle; they were originally been on display in Warnell Hall.
Thomas Denton of Warnell
Lettice Denton [Vachell]
On 2 Oct 1723 another Thomas, son of Isaac Denton, was recorded as baptised at Sebergham with the comment these were the Dentons of ‘Green Foot’, not ‘de Warnell Dentons’, though they reckoned themselves as originals of the same stock.
A schedule of gallery seats in the Sebergham church in 1773 lists the Rev Isaac Denton subscribing for a seat at £3. He was the curate of the church from 1768-1772. It also provides information that he served as Rector of Ashded (Ashtead) in Surrey in 1771.
2 Dec 1786 records the death of Mr Isaac Denton
of Loning Foot yeoman; nigh forty years the good learned and faithful Steward
to three successive Bishops of Carlisle, Dr. Osbaldiston, Dr. Lyttleton and Dr.Law, aged 66 years.
Cui Pudor ; et Justitia Soror, Incorrupta Fides, nudaque Veritas, Quando ultimæ inveniet parem
which means rather cryptically
‘And Shame ; She and Justice, Uncorrupted faith, naked Truth, When you find the last match’
just what is that trying to express?
In 1803 there is mention of a Mrs Sally Robson, relict of Isaac Robson, living with her son-in-law the Rev Isaac Denton.
There is a plaque on the south wall of the church to a much later Isaac Denton (1783-1838). By now they are becoming pretty obscure relatives. This Isaac was a fourteenth cousin eight times removed.
To the memory of Isaac Denton of Sebergham, Surgeon, who died April, 25th 1838, aged 55 years,
for a memorial of individual worth, and more particularly of professional services
afforded by him gratuitously to the afflicted poor of the neighbourhood,
this mural tablet is erected by the spontaneous act of his friends.
The plaque on Isaac’s tomb in the churchyard reads:
To memory of Elizabeth, wife of Isaac Denton… Also to memory of Isaac Denton…
secretary to the Bishop of Carlisle…
Intriguing that not only did they remain in the locality but they also held down similar roles. This Isaac was secretary to the Bishop of Carlisle in the 19thcentury; John the historian had also served his Bishop of Carlisle in the 16thcentury.
Let’s bring this to a close by referring to the document for its detailed appendices. It is available at www.archaeologydataservice.ac.uk
- Appendix III listing the Dentons de Warnell events between 1698 and 1781
- Appendix IV which lists the Dentons of Greenfoot from 1723 to 1805
- Appendix VII which shows Dentons who served as churchwardens to the church.
Many Dentons were uncovered as hailing from Halifax and they do feature in my tree as cousins. I feel they may be able to be tied in more closely with additional effort.
Richard Denton my 1C13 was born in Halifax, Yorkshire in 1517 (died 10 August 1561). He was a lawyer to Henry VI and Mary Tudor. He married Gennett Banyster or Banastre (1527-1561) and they had three sons, John, Richard and Samuelis, and two daughters, Margaret and Janet. I originally mentioned him as much because I had found this portrait of Gennett:
In the reign of Charles I a Mrs Isabel Denton of Beeston near Leeds invented straw hats and bonnets, necessary in her case in view of her prodigal husband leaving hir with a large family to support on her own. Her hats and bonnets soon provided good sales income and she was able to maintain her family in comfort and respectability until her death. One firm in Leeds sold £7,000 worth of bonnets in a year. She has to be related but I cannot seem to fit her into the tree.
I have used material below about another Richard, the Rev Richard Denton (1603-1633) of Halifax. Although he was merely a 3C11 he is included as he became a significant American colonist, establishing his own church on Long Island, later part of New York – See American Dentons below.
A William de Denton is mentioned in 1217 and many of those in my family tree transited through the county so there must be offshoots there.
These Dentons are even more compelling (not to be confused with the GGF2 Peter and GGF1 Joseph). Way back in the 13th and 14thcenturies they are very likely relatives who settled around Newcastle where they served English interests on the eastern border against Scottish incursions.
There was a mayor named Denton elected at Newcastle in 1216. John de Denton was appointed as a bailiff to the town in 1330, and later elected Mayor of Newcastle for 1333/4, 1336/8 and again in 1340/1. He was a wool exporter and war-contractor who was later accused of profiteering and corruption. For example in 1337 all those appointed to an enquiry into the value of land were John’s relatives, and they concluded plots of land belonging to the Corporation of Newcastle were owned by the king; the king then rented them back to the Denton.
The battle of Halidon Hill in 1333 saw the Scots choose to engage on very disadvantageous terms. In a move that would be used at Crecy a dozen years later the effective longbowmen of England secured the Scots defeat.
At Bamburgh in 1335 a Denton family member arrested the Earl of Moray who had withdrawn from the battle and delivered him to the sheriff at York.
But evidently receiving payment was tough back then. The National Archives (TNA) has a petition raised by John de Denton in 1334 requiring payment of his outstanding account for the provision of a ship-of-war and eighty-two men-at-arms for the king’s service against Scotland (TNA ref: SC 8/105/5227). The background was that Edward III had planned to invade Scotland by land and sea and these forces were to assemble at Newcastle. However, a violent storm hit for several days and not only deprived him of necessary supplies but also damaged the fleet such that it was unable to proceed that year.
(See also Sir Richard de Denton’s involvement in this event from Cumberland, further suggesting a family connection.)
On the 10 April 1341 John de Denton provided a receipt noting that the prior of the convent of Durham had paid up four years of rental arrears for its farm in Newcastle for 55 marks.
John’s third appointment as mayor was managed (rigged?) by an oligarchy of twelve burgesses and this led to other guilds rebelling, rioting and seizing the town’s gates. They elected their own candidate, Robert de Acton. King Edward III imposed a fine on the town for the unrest and prompted a new election procedure. Having lost, Denton was then impugned and accused of aiding the Scottish army. Knowing the jury was rigged he refused to plead so was imprisoned and died from starvation in 1344. Edward III reacted by taking over the town and seeking out John’s ‘killers’, many of whom were of the lesser burgesses and were killed in retribution.