Tracing the disparate ancestries of four great families


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Ephraim and Charles Chatterley of Shelton Hall

1744 Ephraim Chatterley - baptised 20 February 1744, son of John and Joyce Chatterley.

1771 Ephraim and his brother Charles were potters in Hanley. C & E Chatterley, manufacturers of cream coloured earthenware in succession to Samuel Chatterley in Hanley.Through their agent Elijah Mayer they built up an extensive foreign trade.

1782 Ephraim and Charles Chatterley built Shelton Hall (also known as Chatterley Hall). It was a square three-storied building with a lower wing to the north. It stood between Cemetery Road and Caledonian Road. see

Ephraim was known to be living there c.1790

1793 They gave up the business to their nephews James & Charles Whitehead.

1811 Ephraim died 7 May 1811. There is a memorial tablet, at the chancel end, in St. John's church, Hanley; it is inscribed: "EPHRAIM CHATTERLEY, of Shelton, who died 7th May, 1811 aged 66 years."

Mary Ann Chatterley (Ephraim's daughter) inherited the estate. She married William Bishop, an attorney. They moved into Shelton Hall.

1815 On 15th December 1815, Frederick Bishop was born to William and Mary Ann Bishop.

1832 Ephraim's widow Mary Ann died in 1832 - she was still living at Shelton Hall at the time of her death.

1849 William Bishop died whilst still living at the Hall.

1793 Ephraim and Charles gave up the pottery business to their nephews James & Charles Whitehead.

1811 Ephraim's died 7th May 1811.

1832 Ephraim's widow Mary died in 1832 - she was still living at Shelton Hall at the time of her death.


Elijah Fenton

The poet Elijah Fenton was born on May 15th, 1683. His father, John Fenton and mother, Elizabeth Bagnall were from Newcastle and Fenton Park. Elijah Fenton was born at Shelton in the Valley of the Trent, in the old Hall or family seat of the Fns in Staffordshire, a large, irregular, half timbered building, commonly called Shelton Hall. The poet's father John Fenton was a barrister and one of the coroners of the county, born in 1638 was the eldest son of an eldest son who had "inherited a considerable estate," described as consisting of Shelton Old Hall and a "good deal of land in that and the adjoining township". A certain distinction was doubtless attached to the possession of Shelton, which had been a manor as early as the twenty-fifth year of Edward I, and later a property of John of Gaunt's. family retained possession of Shelton Old Hall until its destruction by fire in 1853

New Hall porcelain
The manufacture of porcelain was commenced in 1782 by a firm consisting for the most part of local potters. The best known of the partners are Samuel Hollins of Shelton (who had established about 1760 a manufactory of fine red ware teapots), Anthony Keeling of Tunstall, Jacob Warburton and John Turner. The firm purchased the rights of Richard Chamions patent for the manufacture of hard-paste porcelain in 1781. Later Keeling and Turner withdrew from the partnership. The works were in consequence removed from Tunstall to Shelton, close to Shelton Hall, for the factory then became known as the New Hall china manufactory. On his death in 1820 Samuel Hollins still had an interest in the New Hall China Works.

The Wedgwoods by Llewellynn Frederick William Jewitt says that the remaining partners removed their works to a house called Shelton Hall, afterwards called New Hall to avoid confusion with Old Hall, celebrated as the birthplace of Elijah Fenton, the poet.

National Archives
The house known as Shelton Old Hall was situated at the top of the slope above the present Wellesley Street to the south of St. Mark's Church. By 1680 it was the seat of John Fenton, coroner for Staffordshire, who died there in 1694; his son Elijah Fenton the poet was born there in 1683. (fn. 278) John's elder son and heir John moved to Newcastle in 1695, (fn. 279) but the house and lands in Shelton remained the property of the family and were owned by Sir Thomas Fletcher Fenton Boughey of Aqualate in the mid-19th century. (fn. 280) By 1834 the half-timbered hall, 'built in the form of a long cross' and 'almost the only relic of ancient domestic architecture' in the Potteries district, was the homestead of Shelton (or Bank) farm and in the tenure of the Woodwards. (fn. 281) An engraving of c. 1840 shows a long rambling building with thatched roofs and much exposed timber framing; parts of it may well have been of medieval origin with additions of the 17th century. (fn. 282) In 1853, however, most of it was burnt down, although the ruins stood for many years afterwards. (fn. 283) The Woodwards continued to hold the farm from Sir Thomas Boughey until at least 1876, (fn. 284) and the farm itself was still in existence in the early 1920's. (fn. 285) Sir Thomas Boughey's nephew still owned land in Shelton in 1932. (fn. 286) A 19th-century farmhouse now (1960) forms part of the abattoir of J. Mayer and Sons (Hanley) Ltd.

The house variously known as Shelton Hall and Chatterley Hall was built on the south bank of the Caldon Canal west of the road between Stoke and Hanley by Charles and Ephraim Chatterley in 1782. (fn. 287) Ephraim was evidently living there c. 1790, (fn. 288) and after his death in 1811 (fn. 289) the house remained the home of his widow Mary (d. 1832). (fn. 290) William Bishop, who married Charles Chatterley's daughter Mary Ann, died there in 1840, (fn. 291) and a William Bishop was living there in 1850. (fn. 292) Hanley cemetery was laid out over the southern part of the grounds in 1860, (fn. 293) but the hall itself remained standing between Cemetery Road and Caledonian Road until 1959 when it was in a ruinous state and was demolished. (fn. 294) It appears to have been a square three-storied building with a lower wing on its north side. (fn. 295)

From: 'Hanley: Buildings, manors and estates', A History of the County of Stafford: Volume 8 (1963), pp. 142-154. URL: Date accessed: 13 July 2009.

Linked toWilliam Bishop; Ephraim Chatterley; Mary Ann Chatterley; Mary Hollins

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