I have hypothesised that John Ridout, husband of Elizabeth (?) Oliver was the son of William Ridout and his wife Julyan (née Toogood). I decided to find out more about the Oliver family of Sherborne and build on this hypothesis. Unfortunately, tracking down parish records and wills is probably the best way but, unfortunately, the results make for some boring reading!
The research thread starts with Christopher Oliver marrying Edith Ridout, John’s sister, on the 24th October 1654; theirs was the last marriage shown in St Mary’s parish register for several decades and so, presumably, further Sherborne marriages were written in a book which has since been lost. Christopher and Edith baptised several children in Sherborne:
Christopher bp. 26th November 1664, son of ‘Christoph and Edeth’
Christopher bur. 24th January 1691
Marie bp. 17th June 1666, daughter of ‘Christaner and Edeth’
Joane bp. 30th September 1667, daughter of ‘Christopher and Edeth’
Cathrin bp. 28th October 1670, daughter of ‘Christopher and Edeth’
Margreat bp. 23rd October 1672, daughter of ‘Christ and Edeth’
Thomas bp. 11th November 1674, son of ‘Christopher and Edeth’
I also found these burials at Sherborne Abbey:
Christopher Oliver, uxoratus (married) bur. 29th February 1687/88
Edith Oliver, widow bur. 16th October 1710
Christopher Oliver Sr left a will dated the 26th October 1687, stating his occupation as a ‘victualler’ (I subsequently discovered the name of the inn in question was the White Horse). Here is a section of his will in which bequests were made to some members of Christopher’s family:
…“Item I give to my daughter Elizabeth Leach one shilling Item I give to my son William Oliver one shilling Itt I give unto my daughter Anne Walter one shilling Item I give unto my daughter Edith Oliver five pounds to be payd her by my son Christopher Oliver within the space of one Year after my decease Item I give to my daughter Joane Oliver five pounds to be payd her at her attaining to the full age of one and twenty yeares by my son Christopher Item I give to my daughter Katherine Oliver Tenn pounds to be paid her at her attaining to the age of one and twenty years Item I give to my daughter Margarett Oliver Tenn pounds to be paid her at her attaining to the age of one and twenty years to be likewise payd by my said son Christopher Item I give to my son Thomas Oliver Tenn pounds to be paid him at his attaining to the age of one and twenty years by my said son Christopher Oliver Item I give to my son John Oliver Tenn pounds to be paid him at his attaining to the age of one and twenty years by my said son Christopher Oliver In consideracon whereof and of the sd legacies so to be pd by my sd son Christopher as aforesayd I do hereby give devise and bequeath to my sd son Christopher Oliver All that my now dwelling house and Apptnances with the Garden and backside thereto belonging situate in Sherborne aforesd in a place there called the Green To have and to hold to the sd Christopher Oliver my son his Heires and Assigns from and Immediately after the decease of Edith my wife forever with all deeds evidences and writings whatsoever touching the same…”.
This will confirms that Christopher Oliver’s wife Edith was alive in 1688. Christopher named his children, probably in order of their age: Elizabeth (married to Mr Leach), William, Anne (married to Mr Walter), Edith, Christopher, Joane (under 21), Katherine (under 21), Margarett (under 21), Thomas (under 21) and John. Marie may have died young as she was not mentioned; Elizabeth, William, Anne and Edith were probably born between their parent’s marriage in 1654 and Christopher’s birth in ~1664 and John was baptised on the 19th Aug 1677. Like his father, son Thomas may have become a victualler since there is a will of Thomas Oliver, victualler, dated the 14th July 1718.
Christopher Oliver the elder may well have been the son of Christopher and Margaret Oliver; a child of that name was baptised in Sherborne in 1627 and also of the same parents: Simon (bp. 1636) and William (bp. 1639) Christopher’s brothers. I have found out little about William, other than that he married a Mary Ridout in 1684, when both were widowed but I found more information about Simon.
Simon Oliver (1636-1699)
Simon Oliver married Dorothy UDALL, daughter of Lionel (an innkeeper in Sherborne) possibly at some point before 1660, and they had several children (baptisms & burials in Sherborne are shown below). Simon was buried in Sherborne on the 2nd August 1699 ‘uxoratus’; Dorothy Oliver was buried on the 13th August 1713.
Dorothy (21st August 1660 – 5th February 1674)
Joane (25th February 1663 – 19th September 1667)
Margreat (19th March 1666 – alive in 1699)
Marie (31st October 1671 – alive in 1699)
Lynell (15th August 1677 – ?)
Dorothy (2nd June 1678 alive in 1699)
Elizabeth (27th December 1680 – 29th September 1685)
Simon wrote his will on 29th July 1699, just five days before his burial. He left money to his wife Dorothy, to his son Simon, a grandson and granddaughter (presumably the younger Simon’s children) and his daughters Margaret, Joane, Mary, Hester and Dorothy. The will was witnessed by Joseph Ridoutt [the only such named individual I have found in the Sherborne parish records was the son of a Thomas and Dorothy Ridout, baptised in 1666]. I have not found baptisms in Sherborne for Hester or Simon (but the 1677 Sherborne Manor Survey suggests that he was born in 1663); Lionel wasn’t mentioned by his father and so may have died before 1699.
Simon Oliver (1663-1738)
The younger Simon Oliver married Margaret Ridout on the 26th May 1691 in Sherborne. One online transcription of this marriage gives Margaret the middle name of Driscoll but this is not shown in the parish register of Sherborne and hence this information is unsourced and may be inaccurate. [Intriguingly, one candidate for Margaret may have been the daughter of John Ridout and Elizabeth (?) Oliver baptised in Sherborne on the 26th December 1664.]
Simon and Margaret Oliver had the following children:
Elizabeth bp. 5th May 1692, daughter of ‘Simon and Margrett’
Simon bp. 26th December 1694, son of ‘Simon and Margaret’
Elizabeth bur. 17th February 1694/95, daughter of ‘Simon and Margrett’
Betty bp. 29th August 1698, daughter of ‘Symon and Margaret’
Dorothy bp. 13th January 1700/01, daughter of ‘Simon and Margaret’
Ann bp. 19th July 1703, daughter of ‘Simon and Margaret’
Lionel bp. 15th September 1708, son of ‘Simon and Margaret’
Simon was buried on the 1st September 1738; I couldn’t find a burial for his wife Margaret.
Simon Oliver (1694-1741)
There are two burials in Sherborne Abbey…
Anne bur. 6th April 1739, wife of Simon
Simon Oliver bur. 29th September 1741
…and mentions of the following children:
Ann bp. 30th December 1736, daughter of ‘Simon & Ann’
Ann bur. 28th February 1736/37, daughter of ‘Simon & Ann’
Lionel bp. 13th July 1738, son of ‘Simon & Anne’
A male child bur. 1st September 1738 of ‘Simon Oliver’
Elizabeth bur. 31st July 1738, daughter of ‘Simon & Anne’
This sad list suggests that Simon Oliver the younger’s son Simon (bp. 1694) married a lady called Ann and, within three years, had lost her and three children. His will, dated 25th September 1741, witnessed by Dorothy and Ann Oliver, more than likely his sisters, showed that Simon was a mercer (merchant) by trade and perhaps had just one surviving child, a son Simon:
“I Simon Oliver of Sherborne…. give and devise to my Brother Lionel Oliver and to my Brother in law Charles Vie to their heirs and assigns all my lands tenements and hereditaments whatsoever and wheresoever whereof I have any power to dispose and I do give and bequeath unto the said Lionel Oliver and Charles Vie their executors and administrators all my goods and chattels whatsoever and wheresoever and I make and ordain them executors of this my last will and testament….. I give to my said Brother Lionel Oliver ffive Guineas I give to my said Brother in Law Charles Vie ffive Guineas. I give to my Servant Mary Stacy Two Guineas to buy her Mourning…. and the Residue of my personal estate to my Son Simon Oliver his Heirs Executors and Administrators and my will is that if my said son Simon when he shall attain the age of twenty-one years he shall pay or secure to the satisfaction of my said Trustees and Executors and the survivor of them such of my Debts and Legacies as shall then remain unpaid…” (probate: 14th November 1741).
Simon’s sister Betty (bp. 1698) married Charles VIE on the 4th May 1726 at Thornford, a village four miles south-west of Sherborne. Their daughter, Jane (sometimes called Jenny) was baptised on the 11th April 1727 in Sherborne after which the family may have moved elsewhere in Dorset. Simon mentioned Jane in his will (“I give to my niece Jenny, daughter of the said Charles Vie, five guineas”). Jane Vie married James Ridout at some point, probably prior to 1750, although I have been unable to find a parish record. James was a draper by trade and I know his place amongst the Sherborne Ridout clan and will write more of him in due course.
Below is a summary of the Oliver family descending from Christopher Oliver and Margaret BALLE or BAILIE (m. 7th October 1625 Sherborne):
(i) Christopher OLIVER (1627-1688) = Edith RIDOUT (m. 1654) (ii) Elizabeth (ii) William (ii) Anne (ii) Edith (ii) Christopher (bp. 1664) (ii) Marie (bp. 1666) (ii) Joan (bp. 1667) (ii) Katherine (bp. 1670) (ii) Margaret (bp. 1672) (ii) Thomas (bp. 1674) (ii) John (bp. 1677) (i) Simon OLIVER (bp. 1636-1699) = Dorothy UDALL (m. ~1660) (ii) Simon (bn ~1663-1738) = Margaret RIDOUT (m. 1691) (iii) Betty (bp. 1698) = Charles VIE (iv) Jane VIE = James RIDOUT (iii) Dorothy (bp. 1701) (iii) Ann (bp. 1703) (iii) Lionel (bp. 1708) (iii) Simon (1694-1741) = Ann(e) (iv) Simon (ii) Joan (bp. 1663) (ii) Dorothy (bp. 1666) (ii) Margaret (bp. 1666) (ii) Marie (bp. 1671) (ii) Lionel (bp. 1677) (ii) Dorothy (bp. 1678) (ii) Elizabeth (bp. 1680) (ii) Joane (ii) Hester