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Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

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Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby cas » Fri Jun 24, 2016 10:32 am

Hello, I hope someone will be able to help with my request. I'm looking for any information regarding a Female Blacksmith named Eliza(beth) Bennett/Bennet (Various spelling). She was producing items for Blenheim Palace and is recorded in the building ledgers for Blenheim Palace in 1708. I think she may have been a Master Blacksmith but there is no indication of this in the ledgers; They only record what she was paid.
If she was a master, she may have had apprentices; she may have taken over her husbands business ( if indeed she was married). Or she may have been a journeyman Blacksmith. I'm afraid there are a lot of questions and the only info is that she was working at Woodstock Oxford in 1708.
I realise this is a difficult request but any help will be gratefully received.With Thanks Cas
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby coopernicola » Fri Jun 24, 2016 5:17 pm

Have you tried contacting Blenheim Palace? They are likely to have some information, and may be able to point you in the direction of more.
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby cas » Fri Jun 24, 2016 5:43 pm

Thank you coopernicola for your reply, As far as I understand they do not have any info
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby brunes08 » Fri Jun 24, 2016 9:17 pm

It might be useful to contact the Oxfordshire County Record Office. They may have old records of the area.
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby peter kent » Sat Jun 25, 2016 5:29 am

She would surely not have been a master blacksmith! Or a Journeyman! The only plausible explanation I can think of is that she owned a forge - perhaps she was a widow - and employed a blacksmith
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby pjmartin » Sat Jun 25, 2016 6:39 am

Peter
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby cas » Sat Jun 25, 2016 11:03 am

Thank you all for your replies and suggestions.Some of which I have already tried or been aware of. Just to put the record straight there were a number of female blacksmiths in the 18th and 19th centuries.
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby AdrianB38 » Sat Jun 25, 2016 12:26 pm

I am still concerned about the possibility of confusion between a blacksmith who ran the business (the owner or manager) and a blacksmith who wielded the hammer (the operative). Similar confusions arise with the description of the "architect" of a cathedral or castle as a mason. At that stage he would be unlikely to wield a hammer himself, like the operatives did.

I seriously would like to see the references to "a number of female blacksmiths in the 18th and 19th centuries" and to see whether they indicate that the women were operatives or owners / managers.

http://www.history.org/Foundation/journal/Spring04/women.cfm does have such a reference to operative female blacksmiths in 1741. But how many of the others were operatives? Certainly nail-smithing and chain making used whole families but we know that from descriptions. Unless we find some more details about Elizabeth Bennett, we need to say that we don't know if she was an operative blacksmith or a manager / owner smith (or both, of course).
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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby Alan Savage » Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:15 pm

I have 2 Elizabeth Bennetts on my tree in Woodstock. Both have husbands by the name of Valentine and appear in the parish registers as Valentine Snr. and Valentine Jnr. and both were extant in 1708. Valentine Jnr died in June 1708 and Elizabeth (perhaps) was being paid on his behalf. Would you please inform me as to where your information is held. In years past I was in contact with the Archivist at Blenheim who was unable to give me any Bennett information.
What is your connection to the Bennetts. I have, in the past, transcribed most of the Oxfordshire Parish Registers for the Bennet(t) surname so I may be able to help you if this surname is of interest to you (Bennett is the 12th most common surname in Oxfordshire.

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Re: Elizabeth Bennett, Female BLACKSMITH

Postby cas » Thu Aug 25, 2016 10:46 am

Thank you Alan for your reply. If you give me permission, I will pass on your reply to my daughter. I was interested in Elizabeth as she was mentioned in a blog written by my daughter. We do not have any family connection to Elizabeth although we do have male blacksmiths in our tree. Kindest regards
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