John Barley

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John Barley
Person John Barley
First name John
Middle name(s)
Last name Barley
Spouse of
Widow of
Occupation Waterman
Secondary shorebased occupation
Mariner occupation
Associated with ship(s)
Training Not apprentice
Is apprentice of
Was apprentice of
Had apprentice(s)
Citizen Unknown
Literacy Marke
Has opening text Johannes Barley
Has signoff text V
Signoff image (Invalid transcription image)
Language skills English language
Has interpreter
Birth street
Birth parish
Birth town
Birth county
Birth province
Birth country
Res street Wapping
Res parish Stepney
Res town
Res county Middlesex
Res province
Res country England
Birth year 1628
Marriage year
Death year
Probate date
First deposition age 22
Primary sources
Act book start page(s)
Personal answer start page(s)
Allegation start page(s)
Interrogatories page(s)
Deposition start page(s) HCA 13/63 f.294r Annotate
Chancery start page(s)
Letter start page(s)
Miscellaneous start page(s)
Act book date(s)
Personal answer date(s)
Allegation date(s)
Interrogatories date(s)
Deposition date(s) Jun 25 1650
How complete is this biography?
Has infobox completed Yes
Has synthesis completed No
Has HCA evidence completed No
Has source comment completed No
Ship classification
Type of ship River boat
Silver Ship litigation in 1650s
Role in Silver Ship litigation None

Biographical synthesis

John Barley (b. ca. 1628; d. ?). Waterman.

Resident in Wapping in the parish of Stepney in 1650.

Evidence from High Court of Admiralty

Twenty-two year old John Barley deposed on June 25th 1650. He was examined in the case of "Hans Claeson and Company against Broadgate and Willson et cetera".[1]

The case concerned the Flemish ship the Saint Jacob (Master: Hance Claeson) and a second ship the Phillips (Master: Richard Hussee).

John Barley, a waterman, had been aboard the Saint Jacob when it was at Woolwich. Subsequently, the Saint Jacob came to Dickshore, where she fell foul of the anchor stock of the ship the Phillip. Barley, and his fellow witness, another waterman named Mathew Purdye, witnessed the Saint Jacob lying foul of the anchor stock, themselves "comeing from the Hermitage downe to Dickshore".[2]

John Barley recited that by the "lawes and customes of the River Thames noe ship or vessell ought to ride att an Anchor therein without a buoye or beacon fixed theretop as is arlate to the end that any shipps or other vessells comeing neare the same may have thereby notice where such anchors doe lye and soe avoyd the danger which otherwise through want thereof might and would happen". This John Barley knew "being a waterman by profession and haveing served an apprenticeship in and upon the said River hath observed the custome to bee as is predeposed".[3]

The anchor stock prevented the Saint Jacob's keel from settling properly on the river bed at low tide. Instead the ship toppled over in a hole in the river, and as a result her cargo of corn or oats was "the greatest part thereof soe spoyled and damnified that it was worth very little or nothing to what it might have bin sould for in case the said misfortune had not happened".[4]

Complicating the case and Barley's testimony is Barley's admission in answer to interrogatories that he had never known a ship, laden or unladen, to come to an anchor at the spot the Saint Jacob was anchored. Moreover, John Barley added in answer to a further interrogatory that "it is not usuall for any master or pilot to bring a ship laden into the River of Thames ashore without first comeing to an anchor in the channell and there remayneing by the space of one tyde as is interrogated, there to inspect and looke that the place whither they intend to bring the said ship bee free from such incumbrances and inconveniencies as is interrogated."[5]

On balance, John Barley concluded that although the ship lay in a hole, which caused the tipping over of the ship, this would not have happened if she had not first sat upon the anchor stock of the Phillip.[6]

Contrasting testimony was given by a number of other watermen. See, for example, the testimony of Jacob Merrit.

Witnesses in the case of Hans Claeson and Company against Broadgate and Willson

  1. Jacobus Merrit de Lymehouse parochia de Stepney in comitatu Middlesex aquarius aetatis 42 annorum, April 3rd 1650[7]
  2. Jacobus Symmes de Lymehouse parochia de Stepney in comitatu Middlesex aquarius aetatis 39 annorum, April 3rd 1650[8]
  3. Robertus Dennis de Lymehouse parochia de Stepney aquarius aetais 33. annorum, April 3rd 1650[9]
  4. Willimus Chuter de Lymehouse parochia de Stepney in comitau Middlesex aquarius aetatis 43 annorum, April 4th 1650[10]
  5. Johannes Ledman de Lymehouse parochia de Stepney in comitatu Middlesex joyner aetatis 54 annorum, April 4th 1650[11]
  6. William Hooke servus et apprenticius Richard Hussee partis producon in hac causa aetatis sua 19 annorum, April 4th 1650[12]
  7. Johannes Badge famulus et apprenticius Richard Hussee de Lymehouse infra parochiam de Stepney in comitatu Middlesex nauta aetatis sua 18. annorum, April 4th 1650[13]

  1. Johannes Barley de Wapping infra parochiam da Stepney in comitatu Middlesex waterman natus apud [?Owbound] in comitatu Bedford aetatis sua 22. annorum, June 26th 1650[14]
  2. Mathaeus Purdye de Wapping infra parochiam de Stepney et comitatu Middlesex waterman aetatis sua 22. annorum, June 26th 1650[15]
  3. Jacob Vanderlack parochia Sancta Catherina infra precinct turrim London gentleman aetatis sua 19 annorum, July 3rd 1650[16]
  4. Randolph Orton de Shadwell infra parochiam de Stepney in comitatu Middlesex naupegus aetatis 38. annorum, July 3rd 1650[17]

Comment on sources

  1. HCA 13/63 f.294r
  2. HCA 13/63 f.294r
  3. HCA 13/63 f.294r
  4. HCA 13/63 f.294v
  5. HCA 13/63 f.294v
  6. HCA 13/63 f.294v
  7. HCA 13/63 f.21v
  8. HCA 13/63 f.24r
  9. HCA 13/63 f.26r
  10. HCA 13/63 f.28r
  11. HCA 13/63 f.30r
  12. HCA 13/63 f.31r
  13. HCA 13/63 f.32r
  14. HCA 13/63 f.294r
  15. HCA 13/63 f.294r
  16. HCA 13/63 f.296v
  17. HCA 13/63 f.297v