William Potter was born in about 1540 of Claverley, Shropshire. He married Alese.

William and his neighbors in Claverley were listed in estate records in 1583, when they took wood from Queen Elizabeth's Forest of Morfe:

"A list of the Quenes tennants within the manor and the Forest of Morfe. 21st January in the 15th year of the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1583
Burcott: Harrey ? Harvey Marrall - 3s Richard Felton - 3s William Felton - 3s John Walker - 3s

The names of all those who felled or cropped oaks within the Forest of Morfe from the Feast of St Michael in the 8th year of the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1565 to the Feast of Christ’s Nativity in the 14th year of her reign 1571 Francis Gatacre gent for falling of one timber tree within Mr Hadnolls office the which he taketh as a fee tree for keeping the swalymente. Present Hugh Grenowes underkeeper for delivering one load of wood to Thomas Adams Present 2 hollow stube oaks sold to John Haynes of Bridgnorth by William Brooke or Hugh Grenowes his underkeeper. Present Hugh Grenowes for selling one green stub oak to John Walton of Swancote. Present one hollow oak fallen beside the Lodge and sold by William Broke or Hugh Grenowes. Present William Gatacre his servant for cropping of custom wood against the feast of the Nativity of our Lord. Present the servant of Mistress Dorothy Barker widow for the like default. Present that a number of the parishioners of Claverley to have fallen and carried away wood against Christmas the which they claim as custom wood, viz Francis Perrye, William Clyotts, Francis Hawes, William Potter, Richard Hatton, Thomas Garbett, Robert Gravenor, Henry Gravenor, John Wyllote, Roger Hubbowld, Humphrey Pyke, Thomas Whitmore, William Frekelton, John Rudge, Christopher Potter, John Potter, William Pyke."

William died and was buried 19 January 1594 in Claverley.

William Potter

Burial record for William Potter in Claverley:
"Wyll Potter Senior was buryed xixth of January Ano dom 1594"

Alese was buried 18 January 1609 in Claverley.

Alice Potter burial

Burial record for Alese Potter in Claverley:
"Alese Potter wydowe was buried the xviijth daye of Januarye anno per dicto"

William and Alese had the following children:

1. William, born in about 1565 of Claverley; married Margaret; buried 20 August 1612 in Claverley.

*2. Joan, born about 1569 in Claverley; married Thomas Hawes 6 May 1588 in Claverley; buried 2 April 1628 in Claverley.

3. Agnes, christened 6 December 1570 in Claverley; buried 2 May 1571 in Claverley.

4. John, christened 5 December 1574 in Claverley; married Margery. .

5. Anne, christened 1 February 1576 in Claverley; buried 21 August 1645 in Claverley.

6. Margaret, christened 10 February 1578 in Claverley; married Richard Sylee 2 December 1600 in Claverley..

7. Elnor, christened 27 April 1581 in Claverley; married John Bower 31 August 1607 in Claverley..

8. Richard; buried 13 January 1581 in Claverley.

9. Elizabeth, christened 1 September 1587 in Claverley; married Edward Farmor 14 December 1602 in Claverley. .


Another earlier Potter is found in the Lichfield Will Index:

Thomas Potter of Claverley left a will dated 19 October 1558. This entry in Latin mentions "William Potter filius" (son) as the executor of the will.

Thomas Potter will index

Thomas was born about 1510 of Claverley. 

Thomas had the following children:

1. William, born in about 1540 of Claverley; married Alese; buried 19 January 1594 in Claverley.

Other Potters having children in Claverley at the same time as William may be also be Thomas' children, or older children for William:

In A List of Families in the Archdeaconry of Stafford, 1532-3, all of the Potters are found in the parish of Alveley, about eight miles from Claverley. This is a census taken in 1532-3, which lists each head of household, his current and past wives (uxor eius - his wife), his children, and sometimes his parents (parentes). The words "cum pueris" means with children, and is often used when all of the children are not listed. Our Thomas Potter must have been about 22 years old. Four different families have sons named Thomas and could be his parents.

SOURCES: Claverley parish register; Lichfield Will Index on; A List of Families in the Archdeaconry of Stafford, 1532-3; The Lay Subsidy for Shropshire 1524-7.

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