Martha Woolfitt was born in about 1742 of Bolton, Lancashire,
England. She married Thomas Bentley 5 August 1763 in St. Peter,
Bolton. No christening record has been found for Martha in
Marriage record for Martha Woolfitt and Thomas Bentley in
Woolfitt is a fairly rare surname in England. It is primarily
found in Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire. The origins of the name
are explained at www.surnamedb.com: "Recorded in
several spellings as shown below, this surname represents the
rare survival of an Olde English pre-7th century personal name
"Wulfgeat". Few native given names were retained after the
Norman Conquest of 1066, when a large number of Continental
personal names were introduced and subsequently became very
popular, either from choice or expediency. "Wulfgeat" is
composed of the elements "wulf", meaning wolf, and the ethnic
name "Geat". This refers to the original Scandinavian people to
which the legendary 'Beowulf' belonged. 'Wulfgeat' is recorded
in the Domesday Book of 1086 in a variety of forms including
Wluiet, Wluiat, and Vlfiet. Not surprisingly the name generated
a number of surnames including Wolfit, Woolfit(t), Woffit,
Woolfoot, Woolvett, Woollett, Woolatt, and Ullett, Ulyet,
Ulyatt, and Ullyott." The name is show in Bolton parish
records as Woolfit, Wollfit, Woolfet, Woolfett, Wolfet, Wollfit,
Wolfeild, Wolfoote, Wollfinn, Woulfeld, Woolfate, and Woollfete.
There are not a lot of Woolfits in Bolton. Only one Woolfitt
family is found in Bolton and nearby parishes in the right time
period, and are most likely Martha's parents. This is the family
of James and Mary Woolfitt.
FAMILY GROUP RECORD OF JAMES AND MARY WOOLFITT
James Woolfitt was christened 17 September 1704 in St Peter,
Bolton, the son of Roger Woolfitt and Anne Tailor of Little
Bolton. He married Mary. Mary died and was buried 7
September 1750 in St. Peter, Bolton.
Burial record for Mary Woolfitt in Bolton: "Mary wife of James
Wolfit of LB - 7"
James died and was buried 11 April 1767 in Bolton. He was listed
as being of Turton Chapel.
Burial record for James Woolfitt in Bolton: "James Woolfit of
G.B. - 11"
James and Mary most likely had the following children:
1. Jane, born in about 1740 of Bolton; married William
Liptrott 3 December 1766 in St. Peter, Bolton.
*2. Martha, born in about 1742 of Bolton; married Thomas
Bentley 5 August 1763 in St. Peter, Bolton.
3. Mary, buried 2 April 1745 in St. Peter, Bolton.
After James' death and the marriages of Jane and Martha, only one
Woolfit is found in Bolton parish records: Mary Woolfitt, buried 4
May 1772 in Bolton. This may be another daughter for James and
FAMILY GROUP RECORD OF ROGER WOOLFITT AND ANNE TAILOR
Roger Woolfitt was born in about 1670 of Bolton. His occupation
was a "plaisterer" or plasterer of Little Bolton. Roger
married Anne Tailor 20 July 1694 in Deane, Lancashire.
Roger of Little Bolton died and was buried 15 February 1716/17
in St. Peter's churchyard in Bolton. He left a will, proven in
1718 in the Court of Chester. The will mentions wife Ann and
children Peter, James, John, and Elizabeth. Roger's will
mentions "being at present visited with sickness but of
perfect mind and memory". Roger leaves five cottages or
dwelling houses to his children, along with a loom house.
Roger's inventory lists tools and household goods, including
three spinning wheels. His wife, Anne is one of his executors
for the will.
In the name of God, amen, I Roger Woolfitt of
Little Bolton in the County of Lanc, plaisterer, being
at present visited with sickness but of perfect
mind and memory praysed be God for the same do make this my
last will and testament as followeth – first it is my mind and
will that my _____ ____ funeral expenses and probate of my
will to be paid and discharged out of my whole estate both
real and personall, and the remainder of my personall estate
(if any) I do hereby give and devise to Ann my wife for and
during her naturall life if she keep herself sole chaste and
unmarried, but if she marry again after my decease then it is
my mind and will that after such marriage or death which shall
first happen I do hereby give all the said remainder of my
personall estate unto Peter Woolfitt, James Woolfitt, John
Woolfitt, my sons, and Elizabeth Woolfitt my daughter, to be
equally divided amongst them, share and share like. If any of
my said children should happen to die in the life time of my
said wife then it is my mind that my said personall estate
shall be divided among the survivors and ____ of my said
children share and share like. Item – I give and devise all
those cottages or dwelling houses with the appurtenances
situate lying and being in Bolton in le Moores in the said
county of Lanc. unto Ann my wife during her naturall life if
she keep her self sole and unmarried. And from and after her
death or marrying again which shall first happen it is my mind
and will and I hereby give and devise all my cottages or
dwelling houses as followeth, viz. I give and devise one of my
said cottages or dwelling houses now in the possession of Jane
Davenport unto my daughter Elizabeth for and during her
naturall life. Item – I do give and devise two of my cottages
or dwelling houses now in the possession of Alice Sweat and
Ann Long as also the said cottage or dwelling house after the
decease of my said daughter unto my said son Peter his heirs
and assigns forever. Item – I do give and devise two more of
the said cottages or dwelling houses now in the several
possessions of William Brooks and Robert Smith unto my said
son James his heir and assigns forever. Item – I do give and
devise the loom house adjoyning to the said cottages as also
that piece of land where I design two bays of building
unto my said son John his heirs and assignes for ever. And it
is my mind that all my said children and their respective
tenants or assignes shall have equal liberty to make use of
and enjoy the house of office as the same is enjoyed by my
respective tenants with all ____ watertroughs priveleges and
advantages to each and every of my said cottages. Item – I
give and devise all my messuages and or dwelling house and
three crofts or fields situate lying and being in Little
Bolton aforesaid unto my said wife Ann during her naturall
life if she keep her self sole and unmarried. And the lease or
estate by which I hold and enjoy the same shall to long
continue. And from and after her death or marrying again which
shall first happen it is my mind and will and I do give and
devise my said messuage and crofts as followeth, viz. I
do give and devise that part of the said dwelling house
containing the two bays of building now in the possession of
John Morris, and also the said three crofts unto my said son
Peter and his assignes during all my estates terms
interest and tenantright therein. Item – I give and devise
that part of the said messuage containing one bay of building
and where I now dwell unto my said son John and his assignes
during all my estates terms interest and tenantright therein.
Item – I give and devise those two bays of building at the
East end of the said messuages unto my said son James during
all my estates terms interest and tenantright therein. And it
is my mind and will that my said son Peter shall pay one
shilling yearly of the Lords rent referred in the said lease
and my said son James and John each of them six pence and that
they and each of them shall have equal liberty and privileges
to the house of office and ______. And of this my last will
and testament I do constitute and make Ann my said wife and
John Mosropp of Little Bolton aforesaid executors in witness
thereof I have hereunto sett my hand and seale the twelfth day
of February Anno (1717) An inventory of the goods and chattels, rights and ____
of Roger Woolfitt late of Little Bolton in the county of Lanc.
plaisterer. Valued and appraised the second day of April Anno
Dom 1718 In the house one clock Three chairs and five stools A brass pott and a posuet A ffrying pan A ffall board A box A smoothing iron and two heater Three toasting irons Fire iron tongs A salt pip A brass spoon Three candlesticks, four spoons, three spades One bedstead, two ruggs, two blankets, one sheet, A chase
bed A feather bolster Three spinning wheels In the new rooms A pair of wood stakes, A churn and slasse Three piggins, and one ashin, a bluing bowl A land and two shelves, a wood bason, rolling pin and
batterill One bodfled matt and cord, a chase bed, a stockk bolster,
one blankett One sheet and two ruggs Two boxes, a tub, a stoole, an old tub, a saw A baskett, chair, a ladder, a strike In the buttery, A cupboard, shelves, Aparell of radhings In John Morris possession, a cupboard, ffire iron,
bedstead and curtain Three cows Workstools, one creves, and one riddle, seventeen
trowells, two picks A paving hamer, A mattock, two ____, a saw A stock knife, a dryeing iron, two pair of looms A parcell of wood _____ __ and apparel
1. Edward, christened 16 June 1695 in St. Peter, Bolton.
2. Ellen, christened December 1698 in St. Peter, Bolton;
buried 11 May 1714 in St. Peter, Bolton.
3. Peter, christened 16 March 1701 in St. Peter, Bolton;
occupation: plaisterer; married Elizabeth; buried 25 February
1723 in Bolton. His daughter, Anne was christened less than a
month after his death.
4. Roger, christened 18 April 1703 in St. Peter, Bolton.
*5. James, born 11 September 1704; christened 17
September 1704 in St. Peter, Bolton.
Christening record for James Woolfit in Bolton: "James
s: of Roger & Ann Woollfit, of Little Bolton - 11- 17"
6. John, christened 4 January 1707 in Bolton; "of L.
Bolton"; mentioned in father's will.
7. Elizabeth, mentioned in father's will.
SOURCE: Bolton parish register; www.ancestry.co.uk;
www.familysearch.org; www.findmypast.co.uk, citing Boyd's
Marriage Index; Deane parish register; will of Roger Woolfit,
plaisterer of Bolton, proven 1715 in the Court of Chester.
FAMILY GROUP RECORD OF WILLIAM AND ELIZABETH WOOLFITT
William Woolfitt was christened 11 February 1640
in Deane, the son of William Woolfitt. He married Elizabeth.
They were the only Woolfitt family in Bolton in the right time
period, and are the likely parents of Roger Woolfitt.
William and Elizabeth had the following children:
1. Edward, born in about 1663 in Bolton; married Alice
Brooks 26 January 1688 in Bolton; occupation: plaisterer of
Little Bolton; left a will proven 1715 in the Court of Chester.
The will mentions wife Alice, and children Roger, William, and
daughter Rachel Brooks. William was overseas, and Edward left
him a bequest: "if ever he comes again unto Great Brittain,
he being att present travilling and beyond the seas if alive".
*2. Roger, born in about 1670 of
Bolton; married Anne Tailor 1694 in Deane; occupation:
plaisterer; buried 15 February 1716/17 in Bolton.
3. Rachel, born in about 1680 of Bolton; married James
Crook 31 December 1706 in Bolton; buried 9 August 1743 in
4. Thomas, christened 30 December 1683 in St. Peter,
SOURCE: Bolton parish register; Deane parish register;
www.ancestry.co.uk; www.familysearch.org; will of Edward
Woolfit, plaister, proven 1715.
FAMILY GROUP RECORD OF WILLIAM WOOLFITT
William Woolfitt was born in about 1612 of Bolton, and is most
likely the son of Edmund Woolfit and Margaret Guest. He married
1) Margery Landsdale 25 July 1637 in Bolton. She died and was
buried 20 January 1638/9. William then married Ellin Cooke 5 May
1643 in Bolton.
William and Margery had the following children:
1. Margaret, christened 6 May 1638 in Bolton, "of
The next child was born after Margery's death, and was the only
child christened outside of Bolton parish.
*2. William, christened 11 February 1640 in Deane, son
of "William Woolfoote of Bolton". There is no record of
the mother's name.
Christening record for William Woolfitt in Deane:
"Gulielmus filius Gulielmi Woolfoote de Boulton"
William and Ellin had the following children:
3. Edward, christened 19 February 1644 in St.
Peter, Bolton; married Ann Ashley 27 December 1666 in Bolton.
4. Arthur, christened 9 August 1647 in St. Peter,
Bolton; buried 15 February 1659 in Bolton.
FAMILY GROUP RECORD OF EDMUND WOOLFITT AND MARGARET GUEST
Edmund Woolfitt (Woolfoote) was christened 30 May 1573 in
Bolton, the son of William Woolfoote. He married Margaret
(Margreatt) Guest 12 June 1603 in Bolton.
Marriage record for Edmund Woolfitt and Margare Guest
in Bolton: "Edmund Woofell, Margreatt Guest, both of this pish
- 12 of June"
Margaret died and was buried on 9 July 1617 in Bolton, three
days after the birth of her last child.
Edmund and Margaret had the following children:
1. Susannah, christened 8 September 1605 in Bolton;
married Edmund Radley 27 December 1633 in Bolton.
2. Arthur, born in about 1607 in Bolton; married Elizabeth
Pendelton 29 July 1627 in Bolton. They had two children christened
in the parish: Timothy (1630) and Edward (buried 1633). Elizabeth
died and was buried 7 September 1635. Arthur died and was buried
28 May 1644 in Bolton with a large number of other men, "all
these 78 of Bolton slayne on the 28 May 1644". This was
during the English Civil War, and Arthur and the other men died
during the Bolton Massacre: "The Bolton Massacre, sometimes
recorded as the Storming of Bolton, was an episode of the
English Civil War, on 28 May 1644. The strongly Parliamentarian
town was stormed and captured by Royalist forces..The storming
was a particularly brutal episode in the Civil War...As fighting
took place in the streets of the town, the citizens would have
been caught up in the fighting, and because the battle took
place at night and in heavy rain, it would have been difficult
to distinguish between citizens and armed combatants. The
Royalist soldiers were allowed to plunder the town after the
fighting as a reward, and citizens may have died during the
Burial record for Arthur Woolfit in Bolton (fourth column,
seventh down) following the Bolton Massacre
3. (Male), christened 14 August 1608 in Bolton. This may be Arthur
or another male child.
4. Margaret, christened 6 May 1611 in Bolton.
*5. William, born in about 1612 of Bolton; married 1)
Margery Landsdale 25 July 1637 in Bolton; 2) Ellin Cooke 5 May
1643 in Bolton.