Anthony and Margaret Baldwin of Oakenbank, in Trawden Forest

Two early members of the Marsden Monthly Meeting of Friends in Lancashire were the two siblings Anthony and Margaret Baldwin of Oakenbank, in the Forest of Trawden, in the parish of Whalley (and chapelry of Colne), co. Lancaster. Although no relationship has been established between these two siblings and John Baldwin of Wheatley in Pendle (father of the American immigrants John and William Baldwin of Bucks co., PA), it is possible that some relationship existed, and it is therefore useful to present what information is known about Anthony and Margaret Baldwin.

Both Anthony and Margaret Baldwin left wills, which are transcribed in full below. Margaret Baldwin never married, as she referred to herself as a “single woman” in her will. If Anthony Baldwin ever married (and there is no indication that he did), he probably did not have any surviving children, as his sister Margaret is the only relative named in his will. Margaret’s will named three nephews and two nieces as her heirs. Since two of the nephews were named John and William Baldwin, it might be tempting at first glance to identify them with the two American immigrants of the name. However, the immigrant William died in America in 1720, and Margaret did not write her will until 1725, so anyone wishing to make that identification would have to explain why Margaret left a legacy to a deceased individual. Even though news sometimes traveled slowly across the Atlantic Ocean, it is still difficult to believe that Margaret would have remained unaware of William’s death after five years had passed. Thus, it seems likely that Margaret’s nephew William and the American immigrant William were different individuals, which weakens the possibility that Margaret’s nephew John Baldwin was the same as the American immigrant of that name.

Of the two nieces mentioned in the will of Margaret Baldwin, the marriage of Elizabeth has been located in the parish registers of Colne, which state that John Blakey and Elizabeth Baldwin were married there on 11 May 1702. [1] The marriage of the other niece, Margaret, wife of Richard Boyes, has not been located, so we cannot be sure if the niece Margaret was the daughter of a brother or a sister of Anthony and Margaret Baldwin. Thus, we do not know whether or not the five nephews and nieces were all children of the same sibling of Anthony and Margaret Baldwin, or of more than one. The number of Baldwins in the area is fairly large, making it difficult to identify individuals of the same name. Of the individuals in the area known from baptisms in the parish registers and from probate records other than the two given here, there are various individuals who could possibly be the same as one or more of these nieces and nephews, but none seem to stand out as being good candidates. The parents of Anthony and Margaret Baldwin remain unknown, and no chronologically and geographically feasible Baldwin family has yet been found among these baptisms and wills which contains both an Anthony and a Margaret as siblings.


Will of Anthony Baldwen

[Transcribed from York will register 78, pages 12-13] [2]

In the Name of God Amen the Thirtieth Day of September in the third year of the Reign of our most Gracious Soveraign Lady Anne by the Grace of God of England Scotland France and Ireland Queen Defender of the Faith et cetera Annoque Domini 1704 I Anthony Baldwen of Oakenbank within the Forest and Chase of Trauden in the Parish of Colne in the County of Lancaster Woollen Webster being Aged yet in very perfect and Disposing Memory I Praise God And Calling to Mind mine Own Frailty and Uncertain Fate of this Transitory Life And that All Flesh must yield unto Death when it Shall please God to Call Do make this my last Will and Testament in Manner and Form Following And First and principally I Commit my Soul into the Hands of Almighty God my Maker Saviour and Redeemer hoping Assuredly to receive Full and Free pardon and remission of All my Sins through the Meritorious Passion and Death of my [Al?]one [3] Lord and Saviour And my Frail Body in Hopes of a Joyfull resurrection I Commit To the Earth to be Interred in Such Decent Manner and Sort as to my Executor and Loving Friends Shall be thought Meet and Fitting And concerning the Disposal af All and Singular my Worldly Goods and Estate which God of his goodness hath Bestowed upon Me is Equally and Jointly in Stock and Goods undivided betwixt Me and Margarett Baldwen my Naturall Sister No so Least any Disturbance in the Law or Equity Should by reason hereof anyways arise amongst Them which Shall Succeed Me Concerning the Same My Will and Mind is as Followeth First I Will that All my Just Debts which in Conscience I Do Owe to Any person at the time of my Decease and my funerall Expences with All other Incident Charges Concerning this my Last Will be First paid by my Executors hereafter named All the rest and residue of my Goods and personall Estate whatsoever to Me belonging I Do hereby Give and Freely and Absolutely Bequeath unto Margarett Baldwen my Sister aforesaid Lastly I Do hereby revoke Disannull and make void All other Wills and Testaments by Me heretofore made and this and only this is to taken to be my Last Will and Testament And I Do hereby Nominate Constitute and Appoint Margarett Baldwen my Said Sister Executor to this my Last Will and Testament hoping She Will See the Same Duely and truly performed as my trust is in her reposed In Witness whereof I the Said Anthony Baldwen to this my Last Will and Testament have Sett my Hand and Seal the Day and year First above written and have desired these persons to Witness the Same. Anthony Baldwen. Sealed Signed published and Declared to be the Will of the Said Anthony Baldwen in the Presence of Us John Hartley Jeffrey Hartley John Hartley John Ixnard. Emt. 15 February 1724.

From records of the Marsden Monthly Meeting of Friends, Lancashire, England: [4]

“Anthony Baldwin of Trawden Forrest died the 8th and was Buryed the 11th day of the 10th mo nth 1724”


Will of Margaret Baldwin

[Transcribed from York will register 78, pages 233-234] [5]

To all Christian people to whom this present writing shall come I Margaret Baldwin of Oakenbank within the Forrest & Chase of Trawden in the County of Lancaster single Woman being aged of body but of good memory praised be God Do make & publish this my last Will & Testament in Writing in manner following that is to say first & principally I commit my soul to God in hope of Mercy through the merits & mediacion of Jesus Christ my saviour and my body to the Earth to be Interred at the discretion of my Executors hereafter named and concerning the disposing of my Goods & Chattles which God in Mercy has bestowed upon me my Will is that all my just Debts funerall Expenses Costs of proving & executing this my Will & all other Incident Charges which may happen concerning the same be all first fully paid & discharged out of my whole personall Estate Item I give devise & bequeath unto Thomas Wilson of Beaver in the Forrest of Trawden & County of Lancaster yeoman & David Davis of Wycholde in the Forrest and County aforesaid yeoman & Richard Sutcliffe of Todmerden in Hundersfield in the County of Lancaster yeoman my trusty friends joyntly & equally to them & their heirs the sum of twenty pounds of Current Brittish money and it is my Will & mind & I do intrust them the said Thomas Wilson David Davis & Richard Sutcliffe & their heirs to give the Interest & profits arising of the said twenty pounds to such poor persons of the people called Quakers belonging to Trawden Meeting as is not monthly releived by the said people or to the use of building enlarging & repairing of the Meeting house of the people called Quakers scituate in the Forrest of Trawden & its appurtenances at such times and in such manner as they shall think needful Item I give unto Mary Cowgill my servant The sum of ten pounds of current money Item I give unto John Baldwin my nephew the sum of fifteen pounds Item I give unto William Baldwin my nephew the sum of fifteen pounds Item I give unto James Baldwin my nephew the sum of fifteen pounds Item I give unto Elizabeth Wife of John Blaikey of Marsden the sum of fifteen pounds Item I give unto Margaret Wife of Richard Boyes of Colne the sum of fifteen pounds and my Will is that all my Legacies be paid within one year next after my decease and if it happen that any of my five last named Legatees unto whom I am aunt dye before they have received the Legacies aforesaid then my Will is that their respective Legacies be equally divided amongst the Children of the deceased as they come to age to give lawfull discharges and if any of the five Legatees dye without Issue & have not received his or her respective Legacie then my Will is that it be divided equally among the rest of the said Legatees and Lastly I do nominate & appoint Thomas Wilson & David Davis aforesaid joynt & lawful Executors of this my Will hoping they Will see the same truly performed as in them my trust is reposed In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand & seal this third day of May in the year of our Lord 1725 Margaret Baldwin her mark & seal sealed signed & published to be my last Will & Testament in the presence of us the words (money) & (without Issue) being interlined before the sealing hereof William Roberts Thomas Wilson Edward Blackburne mark Emt. 16 September 1725

From records of the Marsden Monthly Meeting of Friends, Lancashire, England: [6]

“Margret Baldwin of Trawden Forrest died the 19 and was Buried the 22 day of the 6th mo nth 1725”


[1] Parish registers of Colne, available on Family History Library film number 1471023.
[2] Available on FHL film number 99696.
[3] The letters before “one” may have been crossed out, so that “one” might be the correct reading.
[4] Available on FHL film number 817371.
[5] Available on FHL film number 99696.
[6] Available on FHL film number 817371.


[Transcribed by Stewart Baldwin. For an explanation of the editorial conventions used in transcribing this document, click here.]