them, were no other than they looked for : and therefore
70 Scrooby and Gainsborough, got. w. BnuHdrd.
were [they] the better prepared to bear them by the
assistance of GOD's grace and SPIRIT.
Tet seeing themselves thus molested ; and that there
was no hope of their continnance there [as a Church]: by a
joint consent, they resolved to go into the Low Countries,
where they heard was Freedom of Religion for all men ;
as also how sundry, from London and other parts of
the land [of England], had been exiled and persecuted
for the same Cause, and were gone thither, and lived
at Amsterdam and in other places of the land [of
So, after they had continued together about a year ;
and kept their Meetings every Sabbath in one place or
another, exercising the Worship of QOD amongst
themselves ; notwithstanding all the diligence and malice
of their adversaries: they seeing they could no longer
continue in that condition, they resolved to get over into
Holland as they could. Which [migration] was in the
years 1607 and 1608. Bradford Manuscri/pt, folios 27-81.
William Brewster, Postmaster at Scrooby.
January 1589 to 30 September 1607.
^N the Public Record Olfice of London, are the
following "Declared Accounts. Pipe Office,"
rendered by the Master of the Posts, John
Stanhope ; afterwards the first Lord Stanhopb
RoU. Dates. Name of Accountant.
2737. 1 April 1690 to 31 March 1592. John Stanhopb.
2738. 1 April 1592 to 31 March 1594. do.
2739. 1 April 1594 to 31 March 1597. Sib John Stanhope.
2740. 1 April 1597 to 31 March 1599. do.
2741. 1 April 1599 to 31 March 1602. do.
2742. 1 April 1602 to 31 March 1605. John, Lord Stanhopb.
2743. 1 April 1605 to 31 March 1607. do.
2744. 1 April 1607 to 31 March 1609. do.
The first thing these Rolls give is the following List of
the Posts, at this time, along the great North Road, between
London and Berwick upon Tweed : to which we have added
the exact mileage as given in Daniel Pateeson's British
Itinerary . . . rocuia in Great Britain,
Berwick, co. Northumb.
Belford, co. Northumb.
Alnwick, co. Northumb.
Morpeth, co. Northumb.
72 W. Brewster, Post Master at Scrooby.
Carlisle, oo. Cumb.
Haltwhistle, co. Northumb.
Hexham, oo. Northumb.
At NewcadUy the road turned of weitioard to Carlisle,]
63^ Newcastle, co. Northumb. 273}
78 Durham, co. Durham. 259^
96^ Daniton [i,e. Darlington]^ co. Durham. 241
112i Northallerton, CO. York. 225
Here, going north, alternative routes preeented themselves. The
above is the Northallerton route,
131i Boroughbridge, co. York. 206
143i Wetherby, co. York. 194
160 Ferrybridge, co. York. 177J
1761 Doncaster, co. York. 162
[Later, the Post was removed from Scrooby to
184i Bawtry, 00. York. 163]
Scrooby, co. Notts.
Tuxf Old, CO. Notts.
Newark, co. line.
Grantham, co. Line
Stamford, co. Line
Stilton, CO. Hunts.
[There were two routes from London to Alconbwry Hill, The
shorter one, through Royston, which we give here ; which was 64 miles,
measured from Shoreditch Church, London: and the longer one,
through Hitchen ; which was 67| miles, measured from Hid^s Hail,
278^ Huntingdon, co. Hunts. 68}
288 Caxton, co. Oamb. 49^
299} Boyston, co. Herts. 37^
316} Ware, co. Herts. 21
326 Waltham Cross, co. Herta 1 1 \
387} London. â€”
W. Brewster, Post Master at Scrooby. 73
Mr Hbrbkrt Jotcb, C.B., in hia History of the Fost Office^
page 3, 1893, 8, states
As late as 1621, all the Posts in the Kingdom, which even then
were cmly foor in number, started from the Clourt :
I. The '* Court to Berwick," i.e. the post to Scotland.
II. The '^ Court to Beaumaris,^' i.e. the post to Ireland.
III. The "Court to Dover," i.e. the post to the Continent
IV. The " Court to Plymouth," i.e. the post to the Royal Dockyard.
We now give the contents of two rare broadside
Proclamations of January 1584, of which copies are preserved
in the British Museum, Press-mark, Q. 6,463, as they will
give us some insight as to the nature of the duties that
William Brbwstbr had to perform while he was Post Master
Orders set chum amd dllov>ed hy the Lords of Eer Majesty's Privy
Council^ and appointed to be put in print, for the Posts
betvjeen London and the Borders of Scotland,
At Westminster, the 14th of January 1683[-4].
For the avoiding of suudry inconveniences happening by the
over great liberty of late used in riding Post; and for the easing
[of] divers Her Majesty's good subjects, greatly complaining to have
been thereby oppressed ; and for sundry other good considerations :
the Lords of Her Majesty's most honourable Privy Council have
set down and established these Orders following â€” straitly charging
and commanding, in Her Majesty's name and behalf, as well the
Master of the Poets as all other Justices of the Peace, Mayors,
SheriffiB, Bailifb, Constables, Headborougbs, and all other persons
whatsoever, to see the same duly observed and kept in all places,
as ^ey and every of them tender Her Majesty's service ; and
at their perils will answer to the contrary.
Inprimis. If any man, having the place or name of an ordinary
Post, shall not reside and dwell upon the same charge himself in
person ; but execute the same by a deputy : the Master of the
Post shall forthwith remove him, and take order for the placing
of a sufficient man in his room.
Item. That it shall not be lawful [= lega[\ for any man riding
74 ^. Brewster y Post Master at Scrooby.
in Post by Commission, to take his horses of any man, but of the
ordinary and standing Posts; or at their appointment: whose
Ck>mmis8ion ought to be signed, either by Her Majesty, three of
Her Highness [PriTy] Council, the Lord Treasurer of England, the
Earl Marshal of England, the Lord Governor of Berwick or his
Deputy, the Lord President of the North or his Deputy, the
Wardens of the Northern Marches, Her Majesty's Secretary, and
the Master of the Posts.
Item. That every one so riding Post by Commission for Her
Maje8t3r's service and affitirs, shall pay One Penny, half Penny, the
mile. But whosoever, upon any business urgent, shall be occasioned
to ride in Post without Commission, he shall be likewise horsed by
the standing Post of the place, or by his appointment : and of
every such, for their \thA Fosfs] relief, it shall be lawful for the
Posts to take after the rate of Two Pence the mile.
Item. To this end, every Post shall be boimd to keep a fair
paper book, well bound ; to register the names of all men
so riding in Post (with the number of their horses, and [the]
date of the[ir] Commission), as well without Commission as with
Item. If in case, that currers [couriers] shall come so thick,
or in such number, that the Post's own furniture [supply of horses]
shall not be able to suffice ; then it shall be lawful for him to take
up, or appoint such as have horses to hire, to supply his want.
And to this end, he shall be assisted by the Mayors, Constables,
and other Officers. [They] taking, in those cases, for the hire of
those horses [the prices] as the Posts themselves are wont to do for
Item. That no man riding in Post, shall ride without a
guide : which shall blow his horn, so oft as he meeteth company,
or passeth through any town, or at the least thrice every
Item. That all Her Majesty's Posts may the better attend
upon their charges and Offices, and faithfully perform the daily
service thereto belonging : Her Majesty's pleasure is That they
be exempted from all attendance at Assizes, Sessions, Inquests, and
Item. That no packets or letters shall be sufficient warrant or
authority to constrain the Posts to run with them in Post ; except
they be directed for Her Majesty's affitirs, and shall be signed
IV. Brewster, Post Master at Scrooby. 75
either by Her Majesty, her PriTj Council, or any of the Personages
authorised, and above named.
Item. That every Post do daily observe the Orders sometimes
[Jormerly] set down by Her Majesty's Council, for [the] expedition
of letters in Her Majest3r'8 afiBurs, viz.
That they ride in summer, accounting from the Annunciation
of our Lady [26th March] to the feast of St Miohasl the
Archangel [29th September], ^ven miles the hour
And, in the winter, which is the rest of the year. Five miles
the hour, as the way shall fall out.
Whereby, the Poets doing their duties, the Packet may be
carried in summer between London and Berwick in forty-two
hours [= 294 mUes}, and in winter, in three score [= 300 mtles.11^
Lastly. It is hereby commanded that, from henceforth, if any
Hackneyman, Ostlers, Tapsters, or others shall, contrary to this
Order, directiy or indirectly carry Packets ; or serve any horses
with a guide or a horn, without the consent or the privity of the
ordinary Post of the place, that then the Officer or Officers of the
place, or the next Justice of the Peace, shall commit the same person
or persons to prison, there to abide until they have put in sufficient
bond and surety unto the said Post, for the keeping and observing
of these Orders in time to come.
Ail which aforesaid Orders, Her Majesty straightly chargeth
and commandeth all Justices of the Peace, Mayors, Sherifi^ Bailiffs,
Constables, Headboroughs, and all others, her Officers and servants,
to see observed as far as in them shall lie ; and to be aiding and
assisting unto her said ordinary Posts for the due execution of the
same, as they tender Her Majesty's service, and at their perils will
answer to the contrary.
Lastly. Because, that, through the over great liberty of riding
in Post) many inconveniences fall out, through the Hackneymen in
Kent ; it shall be lawful for the Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports
and the Master of the Poets to take order with the Posts between
London and Dover in that behalf.
* It will be seen from this, that the distance to Berwick was reckoned
U 300 milfis, instead of 337i miles.â€” Â£. A.
76 W. BrewstcTy Post Master at Scrooby.
Qod save the Queen \
T. Bromlst, Gbiic[eZtorfiw]. W. [Lord] BuBOHLVT. E. [Earl of] Looour.
F. [Earl of] BsDFOBD. R. [Earl of] LnoiSTiR. C. [Lord] Howard.
[3irl F. KKOLLia. H. [Lord] HuRSDON.
[Sir] C. Hattov. [Sir] F. Walbihqham.
Imprinted at London, by Chribtophsb Barker,
Printer to the Queer's most excellent Majesty.
Articles set dawn hy the Right Wonkipful Thomas Rakdolpb^
Eeqmre^ Master cmd CamptroUer General of all Her Majeet^s Posts;
and straighdy hy him commanded to be kept hy the Posts from
London to the Northern Borders ctgainst Scotland, for the better
observation amd due execution of such Orders as lately
were appointed by the Lords of Her Majesty s
First. That every Post for the Service of the Packet for Her
ISiajesty's affiiirs, shall have, in his stable, or in a readiness,
throughout the year, three good and sufficient post horses, with
saddles and furniture fit and belonging; three good and strong
leather bags, well lined with baize or cotton, to carry the Packet
in ; and three horns, to blow by the way : as by their Lordships'
Order is commanded. Whosoever shall fail hereof, at any time
when they shall be surveyed, shall abide the punishment that the
Master of the Posts shall lay upon him.
2. That every Post, so soon as the Packet directed for Her
Majesty's affidrs shall be brought unto him, shall forthwith, or
within one quarter of an hour after, with all speed and diligence
carry the same, or cause it to be carried, to the next Post:
according to the Orders by their Lordships also set down. The
breach of this Article shall also be punishable at the Master of the
3. That every Post, either of his own, or such as he shall keep
or appoint under him, shall have always in readiness four good
and sufficient post horses, and two horns, to serve at all occaaious
for such as, either by Commission, or otherwise for better
expedition, shall ride in Post. And if the number of horses
[required] exceed their own furniture [supply], then that they
supply their want as by their Lordships is provided for, and set
down [in the preceding Order in Council].
W. Brewster y Post Master at Scrooby. *j*j
4. That every Post, from henceforth, keep two fair paper Books,
or one large and great one, as well to register the names, dates,
and number of horses, of such as, either with Commission, or
without, shall run the Post ; as also to enter the Packets that, for Her
Majesty's affidrs, shall pass, and be carried by them. And the
same shall signify, at the end of every month, or within ten days
after, unto the Master of the Posts : and so often as he shall, upon
occasions, either generally, or particularly, call and send for the
5. That no Post shall hazard, or send any Packets directed for
Her Majesty's affidrs, by any person whatsoever but by an express
\aetuaC\ servant of his own, and that in Post : upon pain of
forfeiture of one Quarter's wages for the first offence ; whereof
the half to be given to the Informer thereof whosoever, and the other
half to be at the disposing of the Master of the Poets. And for the
second offence, expulsion out of his Office : the same being duly
pityved against him.
6. That all Poets and guides riding with any Currior [Ckywrier
or Through Poet, either with Ck>mmission, or without, shsdl bring
the party so riding unto the house and dwelling place of the next
standing Poet, that is also to furnish him of fresh horses ; or shall
signify the same unto him, the party being a Personage, or Man
of Sort, that, for his pleasure, will make choice of his lodging :
and shall not suffer him, so riding, to pass the next ordinary stage,
without the consent and liking of the Post of the place ; upon pain
of forfeiture of Ten Shillings to the Post offended, and a full
restitution of so much as he should have gained.
7. Also, be it especially and duly observed by all Her Majesty's
Posts, as they will answered to the contrary. That if any Innholder,
Hackneymen, or others whatsoever, having horse[s] to hire, shall
take upon him, contrary to their Lordships' Orders, to deliver any
horses with horn and guide to any man running the Post, either
with CommiBsion, or without ; without the knowledge and consent
ol the ordinary Post of the place where the horses were delivered,
if any Post there be appointed : the Post of the next stage by
whom he passeth, shall, in this case, stay \detadn\ and charge the
OiBcer, with safe custody of the guide or conductor ; and shall not
deliver any horses to the party so riding, till notice be given, either
to Her Majesty's Secretary [of State], or the Master of the Posts.
8. That no Post, or guide, ride without his horn : and the same
78 IV. Brewster, Post Master at Scrooby.
to blow as is prescribed by their Lordships ; be it either with the
Fku^et, or with Through Post. Neither shall he refuse to carry
the mail, or other carriage \!Akgg(ige[ of the party riding behind
him \ye, on another horse], so that the same exceed not the weight
of forty pounds at the utmost.
9. That no Post's servant or boy riding with the Packet, shall
deliver any by-letters [private letters], or private packets, before
he have first discharged himself of the Packet for Her Majesty's
affiurs, by delivering the same unto the hands of the next standing
Post : unto whom also, he shall commit and deliver all the by-letters
and private packets, as well as the other, upon pain of the forfeiture
of Ten Shillings to the Post offended, and the displeasure of the
Master of the Posts.
10. That no Post's servant, or boy, riding with the P^ket, and
having by-letters, or private packets, or other kind of carriage
[luggage], committed unto them, shall adventure to open or break
up, or any other ways, directly or indirectly, shall fraudulently
embezzle or convey [away] the same wilfully : but shall safely
deliver the same unto the hands of the next Post, as is above said.
And whatsoever he be, that shall be found to be faulty herein,
he shall lose his Master's service ; and the Master shall underlie
such punishment as the Master of the Poets shall find him
11. Lastly. Because that the negligence of servants and boys
hath always been the greatest cause of the former disorders ; and
that also to grow and fail out, through the small care and want of
government in the Masters : these, therefore, for a warning iu
time to come, shall be to signify unto all the Posts in general,
That whose servant or boy soever shall hereafter, either directly or
indirectly, break, disobey, or be found faulty of, any of these Articles
above said ; the. penalty and forfeiture thereof, shall lie upon the
Master himself, without favour or remission.
And hereunto I will all Her Majesty's Posts to have a special
care and regard, as they will answer to the contrary.
London, the 22nd January 1683[-4].
Comptroller of all Her Majesty's Posts.
W. Brewster, Post Master at Scrooby. 79
Sir Thomas Randolph having died, John Stanhope was
made Master of the Posts on 20th June 1590.
On the following 22nd August, he wrote the following
letter to William Davison; who had been lately one of
the Secretaries of State to Queen Elizabrth.
JOHN STANHOPE TO WILLIAM DAVISON.
OATLANDS; SATURDAY, 22 AUGUST /I SEPTEMBER 1590.
Sir, How willingly I would yield to any [of] your
requests, and how readily do you the best service I could ;
I hope, if ever you please to employ me, you shall not
then need to doubt. And I protest I am heartily
sorry that the party you write for, hath wronged
both himself, and the respect I would have had to
him for your sake, in estranging himself from me, and
indirectly seeking either his continuance, or preferment
to the place.
It is most true, that when old Brewster died, a
kinsman near, cousin-german full to me, Samuel
Bevercotes by name, a Lawyer [Barrister] of Gray's
Inn, one I love and owe a better turn to, wrote
earnestly unto me, praying me, for that he dwelt
near in those parts, and that the Post [Master] was
newly dead, that I would give him the credit to
recommend one to the place, fit and sufficient, of
good behaviour, and such as one as would give for
it as any other should.
Sir, I assure you, I was glad I had any means to
pleasure him; and presently [at once] returned him
answer, That, if the place were void, I was willing to
accept one from him, fit for that service.
8o W. Breivster, Post Master at Scrooby.
Within a day or two, Master [Thomas] Mills (whom
I use still, as Master Randolph did, in this OflBce) coming
to me; I told him of old Brewster's death, and my
He answered me, He [had] heard nothing thereof :
and yet his son [William Brewster afterwards tlie
RuliTig Elder] was then presently in town, and had
been with him the day before; but [Master Mills] said,
He would enquire : And returning to me, the next
day, said, The young man was gone down : but he
remembered Master Randolph had accepted of him, in
his lifetime, to exercise the place, for defaults of his
father s weakness.
Presently I sent one to my cousin Bevercotes', to
acquaint him therewith: who, going into the country,
wrote unto me again, That most certainly I was abused
in their part. Youog Brewster had never used it in
his father's life : nor had any hope now to have it, but
by Master Mills his means. He wrote further, That
Master Miujs had written, as he was credibly advertised,
to the Post of Doncaster and Tuxford, to win them
to say. That he [William Brewster] had admittance
and use of the place in his father's time : which they
refused to do as a thing untrue. Further, That he
had lately given money to him [Master Mills] for
All this while, nor to this hour ; I never heard one
word from young Brewster. He neither came to me,
being in town ; nor sent to me, being absent : but, as
though I were to be overruled by others, made his way
according to his liking.
When my cousin, whom I trusted, did advertise me
of this manner of dealing ; and instantly required the
admittance of him whom he nominated: I granted
W. Brewster, Past Master at Scrooby. 8i
thereto, and have written my letters accordingly ; which
went away but three days since.
Now, Sir, in whom the fault is ; or how to redress
my error committed herein : I pray you help me !
First, I know my interest such as, whether he had
the place or no ; I can displace him : and think him
worthily displaced for his contempt of me, in not
seeking me at all.
But if it be true, as I protest two or three besides my
cousin have advertised me, that he never used the room
[Ojjice] in his father's life; besides, such gentlemen as
went down with [Edward Sokerset] my Lord of
Worcester to Scotland [in June 1590] told me, the old
man furnished them of horses, as they went ; and, in their
return, finding him dead, the widow told them, Her son
was gone up to sue for the place : then have I done but
like a kinsman to pleasure my cousin, without just
offence to any.
Of Master Randolph's promise to you for your man,
I nothing doubt; because yourself write it: but that
he was not placed presently [at once] upon that promise,
that seems by their report.
Sir, in regard of you, I will seek to be better
satisfied in the matter; and if I find cause, and may,
without disgracing [to] my cousin and touch to myself,
I will revoke my grant : if you shall not rest satisfied
that he have any other [Poetmastership] that shall fall
void with the first.
And so, Sir, sorry I have troubled you with such
circumstance [details], and with so ill a hand[writing] ;
being in bed for sloth, and yet willing to despatch your
man [messenger] ; I pray you believe of me as I have
The Pilgrim Fathere. r
82 JV. Brewster, Post Master at Scrooby.
written : and you shall hear and see ere long, what I
will do to satisfy you.
And so, humbly recommending you to the Almighty
I take my leave. This 22nd of August Oatlands.
Yours most assured,
Sir, I will send you the letters [that] were sent me
by a man of mine.
[Addressed] â€” To his honourable friend, Master
S. P. Dom. Eliz. Vol. 283, Na 48.
On this letter, Secretary Davison has made the following
That Brewster ought not [to] be displaced more than
the rest of the Posts.
If he were possessed of the place by Master
Randolph's gift, long before his father's death; and
no good cause now to except against him ; then ought
he not more to be displaced than the rest of the Posts.
W* Brewster^ Post Master at Scrooby. 83
But he was
possessed of the
place by Master
gift long before
death; as may
appear by the
^record of his name in the Roll, among
the other PoBt&
by receipt of the fee, this year and a
his Master [i.e.
that was privy to
the gift; and did
both register his
name, and pay
him his wage&
the testimony of
his exercise of the place now above
a year and a half; which may be
testified by the Posts his next
Neither is there any I ^^ffieiency for the Service,
just cause now *Â« except J ^ thereof hitherto ;
^^ .^^ ^'**'^'' ""lor other reasons whatso-
respect of his \^^^^^
Therefore he ought to be no more displaced than the
rest of the Posts.
'The charge he hath been at for
provision, this hard year, for the Service.
The loss he should sustain, or rather
Other reasona^^^-ter undoing, by being suddenly
The harms of the example, &c.
S. P. Dom. Eliz. Vol. 233, No. 48.
84 W. Brewster, Post Master at Scrooby.
S^retary Davison's oontentioii was evidently successful,
though we cannot prove any payment to the future Ruling
Elder earlier than on the 1st April 1594.
We now give the various payments to him ; which occur
under the heading of