John Maior

From MarineLives
Jump to: navigation, search

John Maior
Person John Maior
First name John
Middle name(s)
Last name Maior
Spouse of
Widow of
Occupation Shipwright
Secondary shorebased occupation
Mariner occupation
Associated with ship(s)
Training Not apprentice
Is apprentice of
Was apprentice of
Had apprentice(s)
Citizen Unknown
Literacy Signature
Has opening text Johannes Major
Has signoff text John Maior
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
Res parish Saint Olave Southwark
Res town Southwark
Res county Surrey
Res province
Res country England
Birth year
Marriage year
Death year
Probate date
First deposition age 24
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.205r 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) May 14 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 Shore based trade
Silver Ship litigation in 1650s
Role in Silver Ship litigation None

Biographical synthesis

John Maior (al. Johannes Major; Mayor) (b. ?; d. ?). Shipwright ("Naupagus").

Resident in 1650 in the parish of Saint Olave Southwark.

Son of James or John Maior, a Southwark shipwright.

Brother of Robert Maior and Isacke Maior.

Evidence from High Court of Admiralty

Twenty-four year old John Maior deposed on May 14 1650 in the High Court of Admiralty.[1] He was examined on a libel in the case of Mayor against Perkins.

John Maior listed the lighters owned by Zacheus Perkins, the defendant in the case. They were: "the Mary Rose, the Hercules, the Jeremy, the Mary, the Elizabeth, the Mathew, the Susan and the Rose May".[2] John Maior acknowledged that he was the son of the producent and lived in the same house as his father.[3]

The name of Zacheus Perkins also appears in the Admiralty Court case titled "Jacobus Mayer against Joseph Muston". The interrogatories survive, dated dated May 6th 1650, and make reference to the same lighter, the James, named in the case of "Mayer against Perkins".

Article one of the interrogatories states "the lighter in controversie arrested by the said James Mayer by the name of the James did formerly really belonge into Zacheus Perkins and hee and the said Zacheus Perkins did from the beginning of the yeare 1649 for the space of about nyne monethes quietly possesse and enjoy the said lighter as the particular and proper goods of him the said Perkins and for a great part of the said nyne monethes the said Lighter was called or knowne by the name of the New Lighter, and was by the name of the New Lighter used and employed by the said Mr Perkins upon severall occasions to severall places as his owne proper goods".[4]

The second article states "dureinge the tyme that the said lighter did soe belonge to the said Zacheus Perkins videlicet to the latter end of the said nyne Monethes the said Zacheus Perkins did name and call the said Lighter (in this behalfe arrested by the name of the James and by the said Perkins formerly called the New Lighter) by the name of the Ball and soe she was called and knowne by the name of the Ball and used and employed by the said Zacheus Perkins as his proper goods by the soece of twoe or three Monethes and did really belonge to the said Zacheus Perkins and for the owner thereof hee was commonly accompted".[5]

The third article states: "whilest the said lighter did belong to the said Zacheus Perkins and was called by the name of the Ball and soe was amongest other goods taken and seized as the same lay on shoare in Saint Mary Overies docke by the Undersheriffe of vertue of an execution for 640 li and [?9] pound charges att the suite of the said Joseph Muston and by the said Sheriffe delivered to the said Joseph Muston in part of payment of the said execution and the noate or schedule hereunto annexed was and is subscribed by Mr Mathew Alburne whoe was and is Undersheriffe for the said County of Surrey and the contents thereof were and are true and were soe had and done as therein"[6]

There is an attached memorandum: "Memorand That the Nyneth day of this instant ffebruary I did take in execution (amongest other goods) the lighter called the Jeremy, one other lighter called the Martha, one other lighter called the [?Sughlen], one other lighter called the Hercules, one other lighter called the Ballast Lighter, one other lighter called the Mary Rose, one other lighter called the Samuell, one other lighter called the Mathewe, and one other lighter called the Ball, as the goods and chattells of Zacheus Perkins at the suite of Joseph Muston for sixe hundred and fourty pounds debt and Twentie on shilling (for costs of suite, And did deliver the said (amongest other goods) to the said Joseph Muston in parte of payment of the said execution./ 13th die ffebruarij 1649./"[7]

The fourth article states: "the vessell in the said noate mentioned and called by the name of the Ball and the vessell in this cause controverted and arrested by the said Mayer by the name of the James and formerly by the said Perkins sometymes called the New Lighter and afterwards called the Ball were and are one and the same Lighter and not diverse and ever since the sate of the said noate or schedule beinge the 9th of ffebruary doth really belonge and apperteyne to the said Joseph Muston and for and as Owner thereof hee the said Muston hath beene commonly accounted reputed and taken".[8]

The depositions of witnesses on behalf of Joseph Musten (alt. Muston) in this case have survived.

Samuel Perkins, a nineteem year old woodmonger from the parish of Saint Catherines near the Tower, deposed on June 22nd 1650.[9] Samuell was younger brother of Zacheus Perkins, and stated that their mother was the sister of the litigant Joseph Musten (alt. Muston). From Samuel Perkins' evidence it is clear that Zacheus Perkins had been in partnership with Joseph Muston, and that they had bought both wood and coals together. Moreover, Zacheus was in consierable debt to Muston.[10]

Samuel Perkins claimed that Zacheus Perkins had bought the barge the James from James Mayer and owed him £31 for the purchase, together with an "ould barge vallewedd at 4 li! making £35, "being the full price for which the said Mayer sold the said Lighter to him the said Perkins".[11] Whilst in Zacheus Perkins' possession the barge in question was mainly called the New Lighter, but towards the end of his possession of the lighter he named it the Ball. According to Samuel Perkins, the new name of the lighter was because a "carman" of Zacheus Perkins came down to the wharf where the lighter lay, who happened to be called "Ball". Samuel Perkins attested to the truth of his testimony, saying he lived with Zacheus Perkins.

Thomas Edwards, a forty-three year old waterman from the parish of Saint Catherines near the Tower, deposed on June 23rd 1650. The signed his name.[12]

Comment on sources


PROB 11/190/455 Will of Robert Perkins, Cordwainer of Saint Olave Southwark, Surrey 12 December 1642


TNA, SP 46/106/fo188. Similarly for £65 11s. to Zacheus Perkins for the same. Receipted. 1644 May 24


London Metropolitan Archives, O/105/001. Title: Lease for 31 years. Description: 1. Joseph Grave, cit. & brewer, London. 2. John Curtice, St. Katherine's neare the Tower of London, yeom. St. Katherine's neare the Tower: yard with buildings, wharf etc., & house of office, part of late brewhouse, in occ. of Zacheus Perkins, with right of way to Iron Gate of the Tower, & use of greate pump, well, etc. 1650

TNA, C 10/6/51. Zacheus Perkins v Dame Anne Poole widow and Henry Pidgeon: Thundersley, Essex. 1650.

PROB 11/212/98 Will of Samuell Perkins, Woodmonger of Saint Saviour Southwark, Surrey May 1650

"Perkins, Samuel, of St Saviour, woodmonger.
Testator is sick and weak in body.
Date written: 1650 March 26.
Date proved: 1650 May 28.
Family members named: Elizabeth Vennor his sister, wife of Peter Vennor. Rebecca Perkins his sister, wife of Richard Perkins. Abigail Vennour his sister, wife of Joseph Vennour. Hanna Wright his sister, wife of Abraham Wright. Anne Peirce his cousin. Mary Perkins his sister, wife of Zacheus Perkins', and her daughters Elizabeth and Marie. Joseph Muston his uncle. Winifride Wood, widow, his aunt. John Stanton, gentleman, his uncle. William Perkins, Thomas Perkins, Nathaniel Perkins, John Perkins, and Joseph Perkins his brothers. William Perkins and Joan Perkins his father and mother.
Others named: John Martin his friend. Richard Mason. Richard Ellis.
Executor: William Perkins his father.
Witnesses: Samuel Parkins; William Parkins; Joseph Muston; Marie Parkins; John Martin; Nathaniel Parkins.
[Reference: TNA, Prob.11/212, ff.196r-197r (register copy).]"[13]


PROB 11/274/261 Will of Richard Perkins, Vintner of Saint Saviour Southwark, Surrey 30 March 1658


PROB 11/310/63 Will of Joseph Muston, Tallow Chandler of Rotherhithe, Surrey 15 January 1663

- See: "Rotherhithe Pottery (manufacturer/factory; English; c.1638 - c.1663). Also known as: Rotherhithe Pottery; Platform Wharf, Rotherhithe. Biography: A pothouse was established at Rotherhithe by Thomas Barnebowe c.1638 when he took on his first apprentice William Fry. By 1651, Barnebowe had a partner Joseph Muston (aka Mustin or Mustion) to whom he left his share of the pothouse when he died in 1659. When Muston died in 1661 he left the pothouse to his son Joseph. William Fry may then have run the Rotherhithe pothouse until he moved to a new Southwark pottery at Still Stairs in 1663. Thereafter, it is possible that John Townsend, formerly of Montague Close pothouse, took charge until his death in 1684 when the Rotherhithe pothouse probably ceased production. Floor tiles and a range of tin-glazed earthenware vessels including chargers, plates, dishes, bowls, drug jars (e.g. with 'pipe-smoking man' decoration) , wine bottles, goblets, posset pots, embossed mugs, caudle cups, salts and porringers were produced."[14]


"Coal merchant: Henry Allen, John Allen, Daniel Gogee, Zacheus Perkins, Edmund Pinchon, Ralph Quelch, John Turner, Thomas Turner, George Vavisor, Jeremiah Wanhope."[15]
  1. HCA 13/63 f.205r
  2. HCA 13/63 f.205r
  3. HCA 13/63 f.205v
  4. Folder_114_03 Image: IMG_6917
  5. Folder 114_03 Image: IMG_6918
  6. Folder 114_03 Image: IMG_6918
  7. Folder 114_03 Image: IMG_6919
  8. Folder 114_03 Image: IMG_6921
  9. HCA 13/63 f.259r
  10. HCA 13/63 f.260r
  11. HCA 13/63 f.259v
  12. HCA 13/63 f.260r
  13. London Metropolitan Archives, The Parish of St Saviour, Southwark Some Wills in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury and in the Surrey Archdeaconry Court, 1558-1650, online resource maintained by Alan H Nelson and William Ingram
  14. The British Museum, Research guide: 'Rotherhithe Pottery (Biographical details), viewed 26/10/2016
  15. London Metropolitan Archives, The Parish of St Saviour, Southwark: Trades and vocations, online resouce maintained bu Alan H. Nelson and William Ingram