The Chequers

    In the Salisbury & Winchester Journal - Monday 26th June 1809 - a public notice of 23rd June appeared from William Pile of South Newton, Wilts., yeoman; Francis Hersee, late of Kemble, Wilts., miller; Samuel Feltham late of the City of New Sarum, tailor; James Vezey, late of Ditteridge and Box, Wilts., butcher; William Lancashire, late of the City of Bath, Somerset, statuary and builder; Joseph Coombs, late of Corton in the parish of Boyton, Wilts., blacksmith and Samson Spender, late of Bradford, Wilts., edged tool maker; all confined to the prison of Fisherton Anger (Salisbury), Wilts. and not being charged in custody on 1st Feb. 1809 with any debt exceeding 2000. They claimed benefit of the act of year 49 Geo. III, an "act for the relief of certain Insolvent Debtors in England" as they had prepared a sworn, true and perfect schedule of all their accounts, available to any creditors from the gaoler or his deputy.

    A James Vezey, and wife Sarah had at least 7 children in Box: Thomas (b. 13th Apr. 1803, bapt. 18th Sept 1803); Ann (b. 26th June 1804, bapt. 12th Aug. 1804); Elizabeth (b. 11th May 1808, bapt. 10th July)); Joseph (b. 5th Aug. 1809, bapt. 27th Aug. 1809); James (b. 16th Feb. 1811, bapt. 12th May 1811in Box); Benjamin (b. 16th Aug. 1812, bapt. 13th Sept. 1812) and Edwin (b. 1817, Doynton, Gloucs.). There were also perhaps other children called Martha, Mary (b.1807 married James Hancock) and Peter. Sarah died 6th March 1833 aged 60. She outlived her husband. There is a will held by the National Archives at Kew of James Vezey, tallowchandler of Box, Wilts., dated 8th Aug. 1829. His executors were Peter Vezey, his brother, a tallowchandler of 113 Edgeware Road, St. Marylebone, London, and Edward Cottle, his friend and grocer from Box. It seems he had substantial property in Paddington, London and in Box, and elsewhere in Wiltshire, which he left in trust to his executors to provide for his wife Sarah Vezey and his children, one of whom, Joseph, was mentioned in a margin addition. I think this is the origins of the Vezey candle making industry.

        To add to the confusion however, there is yet another James Vezey, baptised in Ditteridge on 26th May 1805, son of James Vezey and Elizabeth Wilton and I think this is the James Vezey who ran the Chequers judging by the age stated on his tombstone. This James' siblings were: Mary (b. 25th July 1803, bapt. 25th Aug 1803 in Box); Jenetta (b.19th May1810, bapt. 19th Aug 1810 in Box); Eleanor b. 30th July 1812, bapt. 1st Nov. 1812 in Box) and Edwin (b.1817.)

     He married Frances Tylee in Colerne in May 1833. In the 1841 census he is listed as a butcher with his wife and children: Thomas William (1834), Elizabeth Ann (1836), Mary (1838) and Frances (1840). By 1851 they had 3 more children: Jane (bapt. 31st Oct. 1841); Emma (bapt. 23 June 1843) and James (1847). James Vezey (b. 1805) died at the Chequers Inn on 20th June 1865 age 60. His widow Frances and his brother Edwin, a licensed victualler in Batheaston at the Lamb & Flag, were his beneficiaries. Frances died on 22nd Nov. 1868 leaving James, the son, running the Chequers Inn. During this James' father's tenure at the pub there was a tragic accident in 1838 which befell a young servant woman called Sarah Brooks of Farley, Wilts. (Possibly the wife of John Brooks, blacksmith). A loaded musket was discovered on a table in the parlor of the Chequers by a child called Henry Ashby, who not thinking it was loaded discharged the weapon at poor Sarah, shattering her jawbone. Although she was not expected to survive I could not find a death record that matched the circumstances. Poor young Henry was inconsolable and wandered the fields in a melancholy state.

    James Vezey, youngest son of James and Frances (b. 1847), married Elizabeth Dyer, fourth daughter of the late William Dyer of Batheaston on May 10th 1870, in Box by the Rev. Dr. Horlock. They had 9 children, 5 of whom had died by 1911. Of these, the children that I could find were William (b. 1871); Helen (b. 1873); a stillborn son (b. 1874); James (b. 1876); Percival or Percy (b. 1878); Annie; (b. 1881); Frances (b. 1885 d. 21st May 1886). James Vezey died 9th June 1906, probate to Elizabeth Vezey, widow, and John Cook Vezey, tallow-chandler.

More information on the Vezeys of Box may be found here:

Box People & Places - James Vezey, Master Butcher & Publican


Chequers1.jpg

Half Gallon Stone Jar Vezey1.jpgVezey2.jpgVezey3.jpg
Impressed: 55 / JAMES VEZEY / THE CHEQUERS / BOX.

Also No. 50.



Potter: Price, Bristol.

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