Dr John Ecroyd
In Lancashire records, however, it is a different matter. The original marriage registers of Marsden Monthly Meeting include an entry for 1708, as follows:
John Sutcliff of Clitheroe in the County of Lancaster Apothecary and Elizabeth Colborn of the same millener took each other in marriage in a publick Assembly of the people called Quakers meet together in their publick Meeting house at Newby in Yorkshire upon the 28 day of the 10th month in the year 1708 in the presence of William Sutcliff, Richard Sutcliff, David Davis, Edward Walbank, Henry Standen, Thomas Cutler, Thomas Whittaker, Thomas Slater, John Ecroyd, Thomas Peacock, William Baldwen, John Tipping, Isabel Dawson, Margery Walmsley, Mary Corbisley, with many others. There can be little doubt that this is the John Sutcliffe born near Mankinholes in 1677. The two Sutcliffe witnesses bear the names of his brothers, William and Richard, and another witness is John Ecroyd, clearly related to the distant relative in Kendal who assisted Abraham Sutcliffe, probably in the 1730s. There were several generations of Ecroyds with this name: John Ecroyd of Briercliffe, near Burnley (1649–1721), the Quaker preacher and schoolteacher, and associate of George Fox; his son Dr John Ecroyd, also of Briercliffe (1679–1755), a well known local doctor; and his son John Ecroyd, surgeon and apothecary of Kendal. The witness to the marriage could have been either of the first two.
As the elder son, Dr John Ecroyd inherited Foulds House, and the land attached to it, but neither he nor his children could be described as farmers. John, his eldest son, became an apothecary in Kendal; Richard, the second son, was trained as a doctor and emigrated to the West Indies, and Stephen, the youngest, inherited Foulds House and could be described as a “gentleman farmer”. The portraitist Sir Godfrey Kneller (1643-1723) painted a likeness of Dr John.
"The copyhold messuage of the Folds (del Foldes) was in the tenure of Henry del Foldes in 1443 and was sold by his son Lawrence in 1446 to John Banastre of Walton-in-the-dale whose son Thurstan married Alice daughter of Henry Rishton ...described in 1485 as of
Clayton-le-moors, gent. His estate.... The Folds in Briercliffe passed to William Lister son of Christopher Lister of Middop c. York in marriage with Elizabeth daughter and heir of Thurstan Banastre.
Their son Christopher Lister sold the Folds in 1544 to Richard Akeroyd of the family of that name possessed of lands in Haworth, Dewsbury & Foggathorpe co. York; ..... The estate of The Folds, now Folds House, descended in the family of Akeroyd, afterwards Ecroyd, until 1803 when it was sold but was acquired in 1907 by the great grandson of the vendor William Farrer, (who due to a condition in a will changed his name from Ecroyd to Farrer)
The dwelling house which is a good example of the ancient domestic architecture of the district was built about ... 1600 by John Akeroyd son of the original purchaser."
A collection of testimonies concerning several ministers of the Gospel amongst the people called Quakers, deceased: with some of their last expressions
London Yearly Meeting (Society of Friends)
Printed and sold by Luke Hinde, 1760
A testimony from the Monthly - meeting of Marsden in Lancashire
concerning John Ecroyd.
HE was Son of John and Alice Ecroyd of Briercliffe in the Parish of Burnley and County of Lancaster; was religiously educated by his pious Parents, his Father having been an able Minister of the Gospel, a steady and zealous Labourer therein, a good Example to the Flock of Christ, and a patient Sufferer for the Testimony of a good Conscience.
About the Twentieth Year of his Age, he was favoured with an humbling Visitation of the Day-spring from on high, which brought him into an inward Acquaintance with the Almighty, and in a great measure redeemed his Mind from the Love of the World and its fading Enjoyments: Solitude and Opportunities for religious Meditation were then his chief Delight, that being abstracted from the Tumults and Cares of Life, he might be more at leisure to pursue, without Interruption, the Point he had.chiefly in view; and as he was a Man of great Abilities, both natural and acquired, many conceived Hopes, that as they became sanctified by the Power of Truth, he would one Day be made an useful Instrument in the Hand of the Almighty.
But in process of time, this Zeal and Fervour abated: For becoming immersed in a Life of Business, and falling into unsuitable Company, he greatly departed from these good Beginnings, became less circumspect in his Conduct, and, at times, was overtaken with the Evil of Intemperance. In this State he continued for divers Years; during which time, by Intervals, he was under" deep Remorse for his-Out-goings, and many times made strong Resolutions to be more careful; which (as he often said) being made too much in his own Will, were of short Duration.
About ten Years before his Death, he was again effectually awakened, and favoured with such a Sense of his lamentable Departure from his first Love, and that Purity of Heart which he had in his early Years in part attained, as caused him many a sore Conflict; and entering deeply into his own State, he saw the Necessity of bearing the Whip of small Cords, that to his Temple might again be purged.
He now willingly stooped to the Cross of Christ, despising the Shame, and resolving with his whole Heart to endure its Discipline, and to bear the Indignation of the Lord, because he had sinned against him. An eminent Instance of divine Forbearance and Clemency, in thus mercifully sparing Offenders, and reaching forth a Hand of Love for the reclaiming some who have been deemed of the lost Sheep of the House of Israel, and, by the Spirit of Judgment and of Burning, purifying from dead Works the Consciences cf thole who submit to the Operation of his pure Spirit and Power, in the Day of Visitation, as did this our departed Friend, who in the Midst: of Judgment found that Mercy mixed therewith his Soul longed for; so that as a Brand pluckt out of the Burning, he lived to tell others what the Lord Almighty had done for his Soul, That he had brought him up out of the horrible Pit, out of the miry Clay, and jet his Feet upon a Rockt and was establishing his Goings, and had put a new Song in his Mouth, even Praise Unto Our .god.
His Ministry was lively and powerful, tending to awaken and rouse to Diligence the Careless and Lukewai m; severe, in the Power of the Highest, to the Stubborn and Rebellious, but he had often a Word in. Season to the weary Soul; tenderly exhorting the Diffident, but Contrite-hearted, to confide in that merciful Regard himself had so largely experienced: And having known the Terrors of the Lord for Sin, he was earnestly engaged for the Return and Reconciliation of others. He was a zealous Asserter of the Universality of the Love of God in Christ Jesus, in Opposition to that narrow Doctrine of the Predeflinarians, too much espoused by some of his Neighbours.
The great Duty of Worship, he esteemed of the highest Importance; and his Diligence in attending Meetings, . even when almost weighed down with old Age and Infirmities, and his awful Attention of Mind when there, were truly exemplary: He was frequently engaged therein, in a particular manner, on Account of his Children, That they might seek to have an Inheritance in the blessed Truth, more than all other Enjoyments.
He was a Man endowed with uncommon Qualifications for the Good of his fellow Creatures, not only with respect to his serviceable Station in the Church of Christ, which was indeed truly eminent, but also in the Practice of Physick; in which Profession he was very successful, obtaining a good Report among People of all Ranks and Persuasions, and being remarkable for his Integrity and Moderation.
In his last illness, notwithstanding the Severity of his Disorder, and great bodily Weakness, his Soul was many times as a well watered Garden, and many weighty Expressions dropt from him, to the Edification of those present: Just before his Departure he uttered these Words, I feel an Evidence of Peace with God: There is Peace through his precious Blood.
He quietly departed this Life, greatly lamented, at his House in Briercliffe aforesaid, the 17th, and was buried at Friends Burying Ground in -Marsden the 21st Day of the Second Month 1755, in the Seventy seventh Year of his Age. A collection of testimonies concerning several ministers of the Gospel amongst the people called Quakers, deceased: with some of their last expressions
Town / Index no : Briercliffe - BCF.Qua.01
Map references : OS SD 889360
Name : John Ecroyd's Orchard ('Th'Acred')
Denomination : Quakers / Society of Friends
Address : Folds (Foulds) House, Briercliffe
Parish Registers at Lancashire Archives, listed in LANCAT online catalogue
none + MIs
Local Sources for Copies of Parish Registers
6 burials 1680-1691 - recorded in a manuscript book of Ann Ecroyd of Edgend (1780-1859), at Colne Library
4 grave stones - 6 burials 1680 -1691
1982 - only 2 gravestones remaining .. the inscription on one reads - "Here lyeth the body of Elizabeth, the wife of John Vipond (sic), 1681"
Local Copies of Memorial Inscriptions
see Barrowford, Brierfield & Nelson MIs at Colne Library - six burials 1680 -1691
1652 Fox came to the area about this time and his ideas were accepted locally
(1656 Quaker Meeting House at Marsden Heights (BFD.Qua.03))
1662 Meetings took place at Fould's House from about this time
1681-1696 Six burials took place in the orchard
John Ecroyd ran a boarding school for Quakers at Fould's House
(1763 Quaker Meeting House built at Four Lane Ends (BFD.Qua.04))
1803 The Ecroyd family sold the property