- 1558-1907 (Creation)
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0.24 cubic metres
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The Barlow family’s connection to Middlethorpe began in 1698 when Thomas Barlow purchased the manor and estate of Middlethorpe near York from the heirs of Sir Henry Thompson. Thomas had inherited a significant fortune from his uncle, Francis Barlow of Sheffield, in 1690, the result of a successful partnership in the Duke of Norfolk’s iron works. He used his new found wealth to establish himself as a country gentleman. In 1691 he was granted a coat of arms and in 1695 he embarked on a Grand Tour of Europe, bringing European influences to bear on the new house he erected at Middlethorpe between 1699 and 1701. Thomas died in 1713 in France, having only recently embarked on a second Grand Tour with his son, Francis.
Francis Barlow returned to Middlethorpe in 1714, selling off his shares in the Sheffield ironworks and using the proceeds to extend Middlethorpe Hall and augment the family’s Yorkshire estates. In 1718 he purchased the manors of Belthorpe, Ottringham, Bainton and Dringhouses. He served as High Sheriff of Yorkshire 1734-1736 and in c.1745 he married Elizabeth Robinson of Rokeby Park.
Francis Barlow died c.1771 and the estates passed to his second son Samuel Francis Barlow, his eldest son Thomas having been disinherited for his ‘rebellious behaviour.’ Samuel married Mary, daughter of Sir William Thornton of York, and on his death in 1800 the estate passed to their second son John who, together with his wife Frances Bayley, made considerable changes to Middlethorpe Hall.
John Barlow died in 1813 and the estate subsequently passed to his youngest brother Andrew, the last in the line of male Barlows to own the Middlethorpe estate, and then in 1824 to John’s daughter Frances who married first, Reverend Edward Trafford Leigh, and second, Dr Matthew Eason Wilkinson of Manchester.
Frances died without issue in 1852 and her estate was inherited by her second husband. He subsequently married Louisa Letitia Walker and their daughter, the pioneering landscape gardener Frances (Fanny) Eason Wilkinson, was born in 1855. Dr Wilkinson died in 1878 and his widow and children relocated to the family estate at Middlethorpe.
Middlethorpe Hall was eventually sold by the Wilkinson family in 1912.
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