John Gaskell



Eldest son of John Gaskell and Elizabeth Thumpstone, Father of William Gaskell and husband of Elizabeth Barrett


John was baptised at the Collegiate Church, Manchester on 3rd June 1714. 

At some stage John went to London and had a warehouse business in St Michael's, Wood Street, London.  On 19th May 1743, he married Elizabeth Barrett, a spinster of Banbury, by Licence of Wickham.  From soon after the marriage until his death, John lived in Worcester.

The Parish Meeting and Order Book of St Peter the Great, Worcester reveal John's signature first appearing on November 1st 1750.

His signature does not appear again until the Annual meeting of April 20th 1756, which confirms John as Churchwarden with a Thomas Peace. John signs on many other occasions in 1756 and 1757. He does not appear again until the April meeting of 1760 when he simply signs the minutes.

Details of his children are on the following pages and a picture of a painting of him is the right



William Gaskell

George Gaskell

All other children

Portrait of John c.1750


At the Annual meeting of March 21st 1761 the following appears:

" Mr William Ellis, William Oliver, George Hill, and John Gaskell elected Guardians of the poor for the city of Worcester for the Parish of St Peter" John signs below.


He signs the minutes of the AGM on April 21st 1763 and throughout that year. Throughout 1764 John signs as "Overseer for the City". There are no further entries.


John rented a farm at Batten Hall, Worcester where his family lived for some time after his death.


Berrow's Worcester Journal 1765/66: the following advertisements appeared:


"Worcester Jan 2nd 1766

My very ill state of health obliging me to decline the CARRYING BUSINESS, I have thought proper to affign it over to Mr Elias Andrews, as I make no doubt of his being found capable of conducting it in a profitable manner, and that he will not be wanting in his Endeavours to merit encouragement from the Publick in General, for I cannot but flatter myfelf with the hopes of his being kindly countenanced in particular by thofe Noblemen, Gentlemen, and Tradefmen, whofe favours I have for many years been honoured with, and for which Gratitude now calls upon me my moft hearty Thanks, and to subfcribe myfelf

Their much obliged and moft refpected Servant

John Gaskell

NB I am very fenfible of its being incumbent on me to make a perfonal Return of Thanks for the many Favours I have received; but, as yet, my extreme illnefs will not admit of it."


"Worcester Jan 2nd 1766


Mr John Gaskell. of this City, LONDON CARRIER, having on account of a bad state of health, declined that Employ, and having accordingly affigned over the fame to me, together with all his Horfes, Waggons and other neceffary Articles relating to the said Bufinefs; This Method is taken to inform the Publick in General, that on Tuefday laft, my STAGE WAGGON fet out from Mr Gaskell's Houfe, with Goods and Paffengers, for London, and will continue (as in his time) to put up at the Bell Inn, in Wood Street, calling at Mr Upton's, at the Green Man and Still, oppofite Swallow Street, in Oxford Road, and at the other Houfes in the feveral Towns it paffes through. * As I fhall ufe my beft Endeavours to conduct this Bufinefs, in all refpects, to the Entire fatisfaction of every Perfon, I beg leave to folicit and hope to meet with due Encouragement from many Noblemen, Gentlemen and Tradefmen, affuring them that every inftance of their Kindnefs will be duly efteemed and moft gratefully acknowledged by

Their humble Servant

Elias Andrews

NB The faid STAGE WAGGON will ftop at the Angel in Perfhore; the Red Lyon, by the Water Side, near Evefham Bridge; the Bell in Broadway; The Bear in  Morton- in-Marsh, and at other plafes as ufual

* No Writings, Bills, Money, Jewels, Plate or any other articles of particular Value, will be taken in charge or anfwered for (if left) unlefs entered as fuch, and paid for accordingly."


There were similar advertisements in the issues of Thursday 19th and 26th December 1765. The dates of the advertisements were:- John - 17th December: Elias - 18th December. In April and May 1766 there were further advertisements by Elias, the first simply advertising his business and referring to the assignment from John; the latter referring to a change of timetable and to John as “the late”.


John died on Sunday, 27th April 1766 and was buried on 30th April in St Peter’s, Worcester.


John's will was dated 21st April 1766. The executors were - “my friend James Nash and my loving wife Elizabeth”.


John "Weak and infirm in body but of sound mind, memory and understanding."


To Elizabeth - My three freehold Mesuages (land for development) or Tenements with the Buildings, Lands, Hereditaments and Appurtenants in the Parish of St Peter in the City of Worcester occupied by myself and my undertenants George Ireland and Isaac Pemberton. This bequest is for the duration of Elizabeth's life. In the event of her death, John bequeaths all above to his friends - James Nash of Besford, Worcestershire, Gentleman and William Salmon of the Parish of St Michael in Bedwardine, Worcestershire, Bruke Maker(?) - to hold upon Trust; managing and taking the rents, issues and profits to use as they see fit for the education and maintenance of his five children Thomas, John, Elizabeth, William and George until they reach the age of 21 or marry.

To the children - on reaching 21 and after Elizabeth's death, all above to be shared equally between those surviving and the issue of any not surviving.

To Elizabeth also - "The Benefit and advantage of the lease of my Farm at Battenhall, which I rent of Sir John Seabright, Baronet, Situate and being in the Parish of Saint Peter" with the use of the stock of grain, hay, cattle and implements of husbandry, during her life. Thereafter, to be divided between the children as Elizabeth sees fit.

To the children - £100 at 21 (£8140 in money of 2002), but to be shared, as above, on the death of one or more.

To Elizabeth - The rent, residue and remainder of "my Goods, Chattels, Book debts and Securities for Money and other my personal estate" after payment of debts etc.


The will was proved on 13th May 1766 by Elizabeth Gaskell.


A document was attached to the will which confirms certain information about John’s children.


The books relating to St Peter The Great are held at The Worcester County Record Office, St Helen’s.


The Newspaper Advertisements were viewed at Worcester City Library." All copies to June 1766 and backwards to June 3rd 1756 were checked but no further references to John nor his business were found.


The day of the week of John’s death comes from a note of his son, George, which is held at the Worcester County Record Office, St Helen’s


The will is located at the Family Records Centre in London and the “Case” at St Helen’s, Worcester.


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