Lordship Title of Bear Place ID14123

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The so-called manor of BEAR PLACE is first mentioned in the 15th century and was held of the Bishop of Winchester. In 1438 Sir John Harpedon, kt., died seised of a tenement called the 'Bere' in Wargrave, which may possibly be identified with Bear Place, but the latter name is not definitely used until eleven years later, when Robert Elleworth was owner of this estate. He sold it in 1449 to one William Mynours, who, however, does not seem to have obtained possession of it before the death of Elleworth. Alice, widow and executrix of Robert Elleworth, sold the estate to Robert Manfield before 1455, but the three other trustees refused to make over the estate. A lawsuit ensued and Manfield obtained possession. There are two Robert Manfields, father and son, given in a pedigree of the family made about 1552, but it is not certain which was the purchaser of Bear Place. The second of them died seised of land in Wargrave in 1500, and was succeeded by his son Thomas, who held Bear Place and the adjoining land at a yearly rent of £3. Thomas died in 1540, and his lands passed to his son Henry Manfield, who was owner in 1565. Another Henry, who succeeded him in 1568 while still a minor, afterwards sold a piece of pasture land called Bear Innings to Henry Neville of Billingbear. This land was bought in 1641 by the trustees of Mrs. Margaret Poole's charity for the distribution of cloth among the poor of Maidenhead and Cookham. Henry Manfield gradually sold all his property in Wargrave, Bear Place and certain lands passing to one Kenton in or after 1580. It is said to have come into the possession of the family of A'bear, who were certainly living in Wargrave in the 17th century. In the first half of the 18th century it belonged to the second son of the seventh Earl of Abercorn, the Hon. John Hamilton, who built the present house. He was commander of H.M.S. Lancaster, and in 1755 was accidentally drowned in Portsmouth Harbour. Three years later his widow sold Bear Place for £1,150 to William Silver, a tallow-chandler of Westminster. It was then described as a capital messuage or farm-house with about 63 acres of land attached. In 1767 Silver sold Bear Place to George Rogers, of the Navy Office, for £2,000, and the latter sold it for the same sum in 1784 to David Ximenes. In 1808 Sara Ximenes, probably his widow, held Bear Place, which afterwards passed to Sir Morris Ximenes, the eldest son of David. Sir Morris was Sheriff of Berkshire in 1822. The manor afterwards passed to his brother, Lieut.-General Sir David Ximenes, K.C.H., who died in 1848 and was succeeded by his son Henry Cockburn Milne Ximenes. The latter sold the property in 1893 to Mr. H. F. Nicholl, the present owner.
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