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The fires of Lowestoft 1645 and 1717

From History of Lowestoft by E. Gillingwater, 1897

Transcribed by Lisa Eade

[The following pages in this book have suffered some damage. When a character is unreadable, it has been replaced with *. Guessed characters have been enclosed in square brackets.]

Page 31
On the 10th March 1644-5, there happened in this town a great and [ter]rible fire, which consumed
dwelling-houses, fish-houses, and goods, as much [pro]perty as was estimated at 10,297 2s 4d.

The General Account of each man's particular loss, in dwelling-houses, [fish]-houses, goods, wares, etc., which happened the 10th day of March 1644-5, [in] a lamentable fire at Lowestoft, in the county of Suffolk, as it was surveyed [an]d viewed, and given into the committee appointed for the same, at Lowestoft, [the] 25th day of April, 1645; namely:-

John Arnold, dwelling house 143, goods 40 - total 183.
Thomas **iter, dwelling-houses 43 10s; goods 15 8s. 4d. - total 58 18s. 4d.
[W]illiam Greenwood, dwelling-house 590.
Thomas Webb, dwelling-house *44; fish-houses 450; goods 77 3s. - 1071 3s.
Thomas Arnold, dwelling-house 167 10s.; fish-house 81; goods 127 3s. - total 375 13s.
Thomas [M]ighells, dwelling-house 353; fish-office 21 - total 374.
Mr. Rivit, dwelling-house 269; fish-houses 195; goods 240 - total 704.
Robert Ashby, dwelling-house 308 10s.; goods 250 - total 558 10s.
James Smiter, dwelling-house 102.
Nicholas Pattin, dwelling-house 34 10s.; goods 23 - total 57 10s.
Mr. Simonds, dwelling-house 435.
Thomas Barrett, dwelling-house 5.
Oliver Ashby, dwelling-house 27 10s.; goods 6 - total 33 10s.
[S]amuel Fisher, dwelling-house 71 10s.; goods 30 - total 101 10s.
John [F]isher, dwelling-house 215.
Robert Ferney, dwelling-house 91 10s.; goods []14 - 150 10. (sic)
Richard Rooke, goods 6.
Robert Bits dwelling-house 162; goods 370 - total 532.
Mr. Abertson, dwelling-house 200; fish-house 163 - total 363.
Thomas Harvey, dwelling-house 383; fish-house 108; goods []40 - total 531.
Mr. Smith, fish house 230; goods 100 - total 330.
[J]ames Munds, fish-house 145; goods 113 10s. - total 258 10s.
Josiah Wilde, fish-house 400; goods 280 - total 680.
John Barker fish-house 25; goods 85 - total 110.
James Wilde, fish-house, 120; goods 40 - total 160.
Robert Brissingham, fish-house 94.
John Brissingham, fish-house 10.
[M]r. Allen, fish-house 140; goods 40 - total 180.
Thomas Guler, fish-house []5.
Robert Tooley, fish-house 146; goods 8 8s. - total 154 8s.
Mr, Reeve, fish-house 102.
Thomas Fulwood, fish-house 240; goods 32 - total 272.
Robert Coe, fish-house 156; goods 49 - total 205.
John Page, fish-house 54; goods 12 - total 66.
William Cauliam, fish-house 210; goods 15 - total 225.
John Muese, sen., goods 100.
John Meuse, jun., goods 50.
William Muese, goods 150.
Thomas Muese, goods 20.

Henry Geury, goods 35.
Henry Ward, jun., goods 97.
William Underwood, goods 80.
[J]o[h]n Dennis, goods 55.
James Mendham, goods 2.
Richard Mighells, goods 190.
Michael Bently, goods 112.
George Woodgate, goods 200.
Daniel Sterry, goods 2.
Stephen Trip, goods 5.
John Je[r/n]henson, goods 7.
The totals are - dwelling-houses, 4145 10s.; fishhouses, 3085; goods 3066 [1]2s. 4d. - grand total, 10,297 2s. 4d.

Page 32

And on the 12th of November, 1717, about four in the morning, anot[her] sudden and terrible fire broke out in this town, in the fishhouses belonging [to] the co-heirs of Captain Josiah Mighels, then in the occupation of Jose[ph] Smithson, which in a short space of time, entirely consumed the said house[s] together with part of those houses belonging to William Mewse, which la[y] to the south, and part of those belonging to Mr. John Barker and Mr. Thom[as] Mighels, on the north. The wind blew pretty fresh at south east, so that t[he] sparks flew over the town, and once actually fired the thatch of a house in t[he] Swan Lane; but men and water being ready for that purpose, it was immediately stopped; and it pleasing God of his mercy both to damp the wind and [to] bring it more to the southward, the town escaped as a brand plucked out [of] the fire. The damage sustained by the fish houses was estimated at 100[* - part of page totally torn away, so unable to tell whether the missing character is another 0 - or just a full stop....]

Many thanks to Lisa Eade for this transcription. You can contact her here.

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