Finding Beauchamp Manor

Wednesday, July 2, 2014 - by Mary Helms

The trip of a lifetime to England was planned by the Colonial Dames NSCDA for the centenary celebration of their support of Sulgrave Manor, the ancestral home of George Washington.  Armed with the knowledge that my Colonial Dames ancestor Edmund Beauchamp was born near Sulgrave in Cosgrove, Northamptonshire, in 1625, I was hopeful of locating Beauchamp Manor.

 SWS tour coach driver Len arranged for Trevor, who drives a taxi for his company, to pick me up at Sulgrave mid-afternoon on June 7 to set off for the village of Cosgrove.  First Trevor and I planned our strategy.  He suggested that we visit his friend who formerly owned a farm in Cosgrove.  Fortunately she was at home, but did not know of the Beauchamps, so she directed us to the home of Wendy Page, the Cosgrove village historian and genealogist.  To my delight Wendy was home and invited us in.  She consulted her laptop, and with her information and my documentation she deduced that the house is now named Cosgrove Priory.  Wendy informed me that the Beauchamps were “too posh” for Cosgrove; this would be their country home.

My excitement rose as Trevor turned into the private lane leading to the home.  We stopped at a stone cottage and explained to the man at the gate why we were intruding, and he said, “Explain to the owner.  He’s coming up behind you.”  Trevor and I motored down the lane and waited in front of the house.  The owner looked at my documentation and said, “I’ve been wanting to know more about the history of the house.  Won’t you come in?”

The owner’s wife graciously showed me the home.  Many famous people have stayed in the newer part, and brass plaques mark the doors of these rooms.  Saving the best for last, she led me to the oldest part, which was standing when Edmund Beauchamp was born.  To say I was elated is an understatement.  I was standing where my ancestors had lived almost four hundred years ago.  The rooms were lovely, with beautiful wood paneling and ceiling beams.  

The ownership of Cosgrove Priory by Edmund’s father John Beauchamp is chronicled in the Victoria County History.  John Beauchamp, who described himself as “Merchant of London,” was one of the principal financiers of the Mayflower, as documented by William Bradford.  John Beauchamp died at Reigate, Surrey, England in about 1655. 

At the invitation of Governor Charles Calvert, Edmund Beauchamp came to Maryland to be the first clerk of Somerset County on the Eastern Shore.  He died in 1691 in Annemessex, Somerset County, Maryland.  The home of his son Edmund Jr. still stands there.

 Mary Helms

 Town Chair, Chattanooga Committee, Colonial Dames NSCDA



Montagues Led In Chattanooga Banking, Industry; Fine Homes Were Knocked Down On Cameron Hill

One of Chattanooga's first banks opened after the Civil War's end was a project of two Northerners, who had first eyed Cincinnati for their First National Bank. The First National opened Nov. 15, 1865, in an unpretentious brick building between Third and Fourth streets. The founders were Theodore Giles Montague and William Perry Rathburn. They had moved on to Chattanooga because ... (click for more)

Remembering The Park Hotel

(The Park Hotel is again in the news as the county is vacating it and it will be offered for private redevelopment) I wasn’t familiar with the Park Hotel when I ran across an old postcard of it recently. Judging by the relatively level surroundings in the picture, one might think that it was located on one of the flat streets in downtown, such as Market or Broad. However, a ... (click for more)

Ooltewah High's Robin Copp Is State Principal Of The Year

Ooltewah High School principal Robin Copp has been named Tennessee’s 2017-18 Principal of the Year.   Officials said of the second-year principal, "No matter the grade level, she believes in creating student-centered schools, which are first and foremost focused on teaching and learning. To support this model, Copp has instituted a professional learning framework ... (click for more)

City Has Apparently Found Buyer For Chattanoogan Hotel

The city of Chattanooga has apparently found a buyer for the Chattanoogan hotel on Broad Street. A city board will meet next Monday to consider several resolutions. One item before the Chattanooga Downtown Redevelopment Corporation is approving the hiring of the Husch Blackwell law firm "as special counsel in connection with the preparation of a sale and purchase agreement ... (click for more)

Vote No On The Rezoning For A New Landfill In Harrison - And Response (3)

County Commissioners, please consider the following facts when voting on the rezoning request for a new privately-owned C&D landfill in Harrison.  Use of this property for a landfill has been rejected by the county three times in the past (1971, 1984 and 2007).  In 1971 and 2007 the County Commissioners unanimously rejected the proposal.  In 1984 the ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UT A 34-Point ‘Dog

I can’t remember a time in my life when a University of Tennessee football team has been a five touchdown underdog and this comes at a time when my primary-care physician tells me, “Let’s face it … you are old.” That said, even when I look at myself naked in the bathroom mirror I ain’t as ugly as what I fear will happen in Tuscaloosa this coming Saturday. I can remember the Tide ... (click for more)