Richard Roades: yet another chirurgeon in 17th century Stepney

My investigation of the life of John Bodington, the London apothecary who died in 1728 and who was connected in some way with my 7 x great grandfather Joseph Greene, has led me back to William Greene, the Stepney chirurgeon who may yet turn out to be one of my ancestors. In the previous post I reported my discovery that an earlier John Bodington, a chirurgeon or barber-surgeon, was apprenticed to William, confirming my suspicion that his wife Margaret Greene was the latter’s daughter.

I’ve now come across yet another chirurgeon connected with the Greene family. Returning to the records for William Greene, I noticed that his second (or possibly third) wife Anne Roades, whom he married in 1645, was a widow – something that had escaped my attention before. On 28th July 1645, in the third year of the Civil War and a month after the Battle of Naseby, William Greene of Ratcliffe, chirurgeon, and Anne Roades of Brook Street, widow, were married at the church of St Dunstan and All Saints, Stepney. Brook Street ran from east to west through the hamlet of Ratcliffe.

Section of Rocque's map of 1746, showing Brook Street, Ratcliffe

Section of Rocque’s map of 1746, showing Brook Street, Ratcliffe

Searching for evidence of Anne’s first marriage, I discovered various records for Richard and Anne Roades, which seemed to be a good match. It turns out that Richard Roades was, like William Greene, a chirurgeon: it’s likely that the two men were friends, as well as being neighbours in Ratcliffe.

The first record I’ve found for Richard and Anne is from 1631, suggesting that they were married before that date, probably in about 1630, though I have yet to find a record of their marriage. In their early years together, the couple lived in Wapping. On 5th May 1631 Joseph, son of Richard ‘Rodes’ of Wapping, chirurgeon, and his wife Anne, was christened at St Dunstan’s, Stepney. On 18th February 1633 an infant daughter of Richard Roades of Wapping Wall, chirurgeon, and Anne was buried at the same church. I’m not sure whether Joseph Roades survived (I’ve found no other records for him), but all of Richard and Anne’s later children died in infancy. On 6th January 1634, Richard, son of Richard ‘Rodes’ of New Gravel Lane, chirurgeon and Anne, was baptised at St Dunstan’s, but was buried on the very next day.

Section of Rocque's 1746 map, showing White Horse Street, Ratcliffe

Section of Rocque’s 1746 map, showing White Horse Street, Ratcliffe

Sometime between 1634 and 1637, the family moved from Wapping to Ratcliffe. On 20 November 1637, ‘an infant son of Richard Rodes of Whitehorse street chirurgeon’ and Anne, his wife, was buried at St Dunstan’s. White Horse Street ran down into Ratcliffe from Stepney church, joining Brook Street at the watchhouse at the top of Butcher Row. The word ‘plague’ is attached to a number of other burials on the same page of the register, though not to this child. Richard and Anne were still living in White Horse Street when their son Matthew was christened on 4th February 1641. This child was buried seven days later, on 11th February.

By the time their next child was born, Richard and Anne had moved to Brook Street, the address where Anne would be living when she married William Greene. Richard Roades junior lasted only a little longer than the other children: he was baptised on 28th April 1643 and buried on 24th June.

Richard Roades senior must have died some time between the conception of this last child, in the summer of 1642, and his widow Anne’s marriage to William Greene in July 1645. However, I’ve yet to find a record of Richard’s burial, or any evidence of a will, which would perhaps provide some more information about his family origins and possible association with William Greene.

The email I received earlier today from Joy Thomas at the Worshipful Company of Barbers (see previous post) informed me that Richard Roades was admitted to the Company as a freeman on 19th October 1619. He was an apprentice of William Walker.

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One Response to Richard Roades: yet another chirurgeon in 17th century Stepney

  1. b.morris says:

    I’m looking for the parents of Mary Rhodes who married Edward Wyllys in Brentwood in 1697. Mary Rhodes’s family seems to have owned a ‘burger plot’ property with a narrow frontage on what is now the Ratcliffe Highway, near the City of London. This property is mentioned in 2 generations of wills following Mary’s marriage to Edward. Edward Wyllys (BA Kings College Cambridge, patron Lord Petre) became Rector of Ingrave in 1698. Joseph, one of Edward and Mary’s sons, became an apothecary of Brentwood, with the title Dr. He married Deborah Hayes. If you have come across any connections with Mary Rhodes of Ratcliffe Highway and Brentwood in your researches, I would be glad to hear from you and share the family history records which I have collected about her descendants.
    All best, B. Morris

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