In the name of God Amen; the thirtieth day of August in the tenth year of the reign of our Sovereign Lord Charles by the grace of God King of England, Scotland, France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith etc.; I WILLIAM KENDRICKE of Reading in the County of Berks Clothier being of sound and perfect mind and memory (although not in perfect health) and knowing that all men must die and that the time of life to the most healthful is very uncertain do make and declare this my last will and testament in manner and form following that is to say first and above all I bequeath my soul to God who gave it hoping for salvation both of body and soul only by the merits of Christ Jesus my Saviour and when it shall please God to call me out of this world I desire that my body be buried in the churchyard of the Parish Church of St Mary in Reading aforesaid and in the vault wherein my daughter ELIZABETH and her child were buried and I do give and allow five pounds to be bestowed by my executor or executors hereafter named in and about the making up and fitting thereof if it shall be allowed if it shall be allowed to serve for a several and peculiar place of burial for myself my wife and my posterity which are and shall be of my blood. ITEM; whereas I heretofore purchased of one Walter Watlington late deceased and his children or some of them six tenements and one barn with certain gardens and ground to or with the same tenements belonging or used commonly called or known by the name of the Barn Housesituate lying and being on the west side of Syvier Street [Sivier or Silver Street] in Reading aforesaid of which said tenements five do stand and adjoin together in one row or range of building each of them five tenements severally containing two lower rooms and one upper room of housing and one garden; and before the said five tenements lies a court parcel of my said ground which I have fenced in with a brick wall to be a court for the said five tenements intending and hereby willing that the same five tenements court and wall and the house of office there which I have lately built for the same and the gardens and other appurtenances thereof shall be and evermore continue an almshouse and that the same almshouse with the appurtenances thereof shall be maintained and the alms folks thereof have the free use of my well now in the tenure or occupation of Richard Payne or his assigns being the other and sixth of the said six tenements and free liberty of ingress egress and regress to have draw and take water at the said well for all their necessary uses and at all times convenient; and that the alms folk of the said almshouse shall from time to time for evermore of my provision have such relief and sustenance as hereafter in this my will is expressed; and whereas I the said William Kendrick have enfeoffed my loving brother in law JAMES WINCHE of Greeneham [Greenham] in the said county of Berks Gent and my loving friends Thomas Williamson of Reading aforesaid Gent and Edward Johnson of Reading aforesaid Haberdasher of all the said six tenements and the said barn and gardens and house of office court ground and brick wall aforesaid with their and every of their appurtenances to have and to hold to them their heirs and assigns for ever; as in and by one indenture bearing date the seventh day of October now last past and the endowment thereof whereunto due relation being had more at large appears; and whereas by the said indenture I have granted to the said James Thomas and Edward and their assigns one yearly rent of twenty pounds which I have reserved in and by one indenture of lease by me heretofore made to one William Wylder of all my messuage or tenement and lands in Hartley Battell in the said County of Berks which I purchased of John Moore payable during the term of that lease as in and by the said first mentioned indenture I have granted to the said James Thomas and Edward their heirs and assigns for ever on yearly rent charge of twenty pounds issuing and going forth of all my said messuage or tenement and lands at Hartley Battell aforesaid and payable as in and by the said first mentioned indenture is expressed; as in and by the same indenture appears and whereas in and by the said first mentioned indenture the said feoffment and grant are declared expressed and published to be as in very deed they were upon trust and confidence that the said James Thomas and Edward or the survivors or survivor of them or the heirs or assigns of them or the survivor of them should and would with all convenient speed after my decease convey the aforesaid six tenements and the said barn garden house of office grounds court and brick wall with all and singular their appurtenances and also the said several yearly rents and the said liberty and power of distress unto the Mayor and Burgesses of the Borough of Reading and their successors or to such other person or persons and his or their heirs and assigns as the Mayor and Burgesses or their successors or the greater number of them by writing under their common seal should nominate and appoint upon trust and confidence to the intents and uses for which I should direct will devise or appoint the same in and by my last will and testament; and according to my true intent and mind therein to be expressed; as in and by the said first mentioned indenture whereunto due relationship had plainly appears now I the said William Kendricke do by this my last will and testament will and appoint that the said tenements and rents and other the premises to the said James Thomas and Edward conveyed and granted as aforesaid shall be conveyed over according to the trust and confidence in the said indenture expressed as aforesaid. ITEM; I do give and bequeath unto the Mayor and Burgesses of the said Borough forty pounds of lawful money of England to be paid to them or their successors by my executor or executors hereafter named within one month next after my decease upon trust and confidence and to the intent that the said Mayor and Burgesses or their successors within two years next after my decease shall therewith purchase to them and their successors (or some others by them in that behalf to be appointed and trusted) in fee simple land of a good title and of the [lease] yearly value of three pounds at the least and in the meantime therefore yearly answer and dispose three pounds to the uses hereafter in this my will expressed and appointed; which uses of and concerning the said yearly sum of three pounds from time to time for evermore; and also the trust confidence intent and uses upon and to which the said six tenements and the said several yearly rents of twenty pounds and other the premises by me to the said James Thomas and Edward so as aforesaid conveyed and granted shall according to my trust and confidence in them as aforesaid reposed by them or the survivor of them be conveyed over as aforesaid; I the said William Kendricke do in and by this my last will and testament direct will devise and appoint to be as follows that is to say that the said Mayor and Burgesses and their successors or such other person or persons as the premises shall be so conveyed unto as aforesaid and his or their heirs and assigns shall and will from time to time for evermore keep and maintain the afore specified five tenements with the said gardens and court and other their appurtenances as an almshouse allowing the alms folk thereof from time to time free liberty to have draw and take water at the said well at all times convenient and for all their necessary uses according to the true intent and meaning of this my will and testament; and that the said Mayor and Burgesses and their successors or such other person or persons as the premises shall be so conveyed unto as aforesaid and his or their heirs and assigns by the direction and approbation of the said Mayor and Burgesses or their successors shall and will from time to time for evermore after my decease successively according to the true meaning of this my will and testament choose into and place in the said five tenements five poor people that is to say four men and one woman of the Borough of Reading aforesaid of honest fame and reputation in the said five tenements severally to inhabit and abide as alms folk that is to say in each of four of the said five tenements one alms man and in the fifth of the said tenements being the lowest of them southward one almswoman that so the said five alms folk may hold and enjoy the same five tenements with the said five gardens to them belonging respectively each of them one tenement and one garden in generality and have the benefit of water at the said well as aforesaid and the use of the said court and house of office in common during their natural lives unless for misdemeanour or not observing my will and directions hereafter expressed or other cause seeming reasonable to the said Mayor and Burgesses or their successors or the greater number of either of them they shall be from thence removed and that the said Mayor and Burgesses and their successors and such other person or persons as the premises shall be so conveyed unto as aforesaid and their heirs and assigns and the person or persons to whom the said land for the said fifty pounds shall be so purchased as aforesaid and his or their heirs or assigns or some of them shall and will from time to time to come for evermore of the said several yearly rents of twenty pounds respectively and successively as they shall be payable and of the said yearly sum of three pounds and the rents and profits of the land fee top be purchased as aforesaid and of the sixth of the said six tenements and the barn or ground to or with the same sixth tenement belonging or used weekly allow and pay or cause to be paid unto every one of such four poor men as shall be so placed and shall inhabit in the said almshouses as aforesaid towards his sustenance in living eighteen pence and to every such poor woman as shall be so placed and shall inhabit in the said almshouse as aforesaid towards her sustenance in living twelve pence and yearly allow and pay unto the churchwardens of the said parish church of St Mary in Reading aforesaid forty shillings therewith to provide and fund light for and in that church to serve there every work day between six and seven of the clock in the morning prayer so long as morning prayer shall there then be used between the feast day of All Saints and the feast day of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary every year and yearly allow and pay unto the parson of the said church for the time being ten shillings in consideration and upon condition that the said vault and place of burial shall be allowed and had in the chancel of the same church for me and my wife and all those which are come and which hereafter shall come of my blood the said yearly payment of ten shillings to continue so long as any of my blood shall remain to be buried in the said place of burial and no longer; and moreover from time to time maintain the said almshouses and the said wall and house of office thereof and the said gardens and the said sixth tenement and the said barn with all their and every of their appurtenances in by and with all manner of necessary reparations of buildings and fences and other appurtenances thereof and maintain the said well with the appurtenances and necessary tackling thereof in good and serviceable plight and reparations and every year spend amongst the said Mayor and Burgesses and their successors as in their directions they shall think fit at their meetings at an account to be made and had amongst them of and concerning the premises ten shillings which yearly sum of ten shillings I do give the said Mayor and Burgesses and their successors desiring them to accept of it for their care and pains to be taken for and in the performance of so much of this my will and testament as I do hereby commit or leave to their care pains and oversight; and further I do will and do declare my intent and my trust and confidence to be that out of the aforesaid several rents moneys and profits (which in the whole as I do reckon will amount to the yearly sum of twenty seven pounds at the least rating the said sixth tenement and the aforesaid barn and ground but at the yearly value of four pounds although they are now in lease at the yearly rent of four pounds and fifteen shillings) all the charges of any conveyances of and concerning the premises that shall be needful shall be defrayed and satisfied; and that in every third year or else at the least as often as of the said several rents or sums of money and profit there shall be and remain in the hands of the said Mayor and Burgesses or their successors or any person or persons to whom the premises shall be conveyed and purchased as aforesaid and every or any of them to reach and suffice thereunto they or some of them shall and will provide and allow to and for each of the said alms folk a competent gown; and if all the said uses and intents being performed there shall anything more remain of the said rents moneys and profits then and so often the same shall be bestowed and given to poor people of the said Borough by the Mayor thereof for the time being at his discretion. ITEM; my will and desire is that every such man as shall be placed as an alms man in the said almshouse shall be at the time of his placing thereof the age of five and fifty years at the least and that every such woman as shall be placed as an alms woman in the said almshouse shall at the time of such her placing therein be of the age of fifty years at the least and shall have dwelt within the said Borough by the space of ten years at the least next before her said placing in the said almshouse which woman for and in consideration of the said twelve pence a week to her to be paid as aforesaid I will and appoint from time to time to wash all the linen of the said alms men; and inasmuch as in her lieth to labour to keep them clean without vermin and also my desire and will is that all such men as shall be placed as alms men in the said alms house shall be chosen and taken out of the cloth work house in Reading aforesaid which is of the foundation or provision of my brother Mr JOHN KENDRICK late deceased and shall be shear men weavers and stock carders or others employed thereabout that works; and in the choices of them I desire that shear men may be preferred before any others because I know that their trade is so laborious that they cannot in old age so well endure the labour thereof as other tradesmen can the labour of their trades; and for want of such fit men to be formed in the said work house as aforesaid others to be taken and chosen within the said Borough wherein I desire that shear men have preferment as aforesaid; and in case no such tradesmen or labourers belonging to clothing may be found within the said Borough to be placed within the said aqlms house according to this my will then I will that for want thereof other poor men of the said Borough of honest fame and conversation shall and may be chosen and placed as alms men and have the benefit which to the alms men thereof I have by this my will and testament provided appointed or intended; and my will and meaning is that if at my decease there shall be any alms folk in the said almshouse of my placing as alms folk there that they shall therein continue during their lives and good behaviour and have the benefit of alms folk therein according to this my will any thing above contained to the contrary notwithstanding; and my intent and will further is that none that shall be placed in the said alms house as aforesaid shall have any wife or husband or child or under-tenant or inmate or other person whatsoever to dwell with him or her or otherwise in any of his or her rooms in the said alms house nor shall marry upon pain of this my will furthermore my desire and will is that the Mayor and Burgesses of the said Borough for the time being or the greater number of them shall from time to time for evermore have the nomination election appointing and placing and displacing and amoving of the said alms folk into and out of the said alms house according to their discretions and the purport and true meaning of this my will and testament although by the nomination or appointment of them or any of them the said tenements and premises intended for the said almshouse and the endowment thereof as aforesaid shall be conveyed or come to any other person or persons according to the trust by me reposed in the said James Wynch Thomas Williamson and Edward Johnson anything before contained in this my will or other matter to the contrary notwithstanding; and my will and request unto the said Mayor and Burgesses and their successors is that they in their elections of the said alms men shall evermore take care and see that one of the said alms men can read and shall every working day in the greater low room of that tenement of the said alms house which is next the north read to all the rest of the said alms folk morning prayer between six and seven of the clock in the aforenoon and evening prayer between seven and eight of the clock in the afternoon whereof I do will and appoint all the said alms folk to meet morning and evening and to join in prayer accordingly and every Sunday and other holy day to frequent and be at common prayers in the parish church of St Giles in Reading aforesaid; and that every one of them failing to be at prayer either at the said church or alms house as aforesaid unless it be for disability by sickness or lameness shall for every such default forfeit and lose his or her allowance of money payable in or for the week next after such default which money so forfeited I will that the Mayor of the said Borough for the time being shall give to some other poor of the said Borough at his good discretion. ITEM; I do will that my executor or executors speedily after my decease shall buy provide and allow to and for the said alms folk a book of common prayer to be from time to time used for the reading of prayer in the said almshouse according to this my will. ITEM; whereas my lands in Whitley called [Councells] and tithe free; and yet I have charged them with the yearly rent of forty shillings payable to the use and benefit of the incumbent of the said parish church of St Giles and his successors as my deed of grant thereof made to the said James Winche Thomas Williamson and Edward Johnson appears I will that the said yearly rent shall have continuance according to the tenor and true meaning of my said grant but upon the condition therein lastly contained. ITEM; I do give and bequeath unto my loving wife JANE KENDRICKE five hundred pounds in money to be paid unto her by my executor or executors hereafter named in form following: that is to say two hundred pounds thereof within six months next after my decease and three hundred pounds residue thereof at the end of the first year next after my decease provided always and upon condition that if my said wife shall not within six months next after my decease give unto my son THOMAS KENDRICKE she being by him thereunto required such security as by my overseers hereafter named or two of them shall be thought fit and reasonable for to pay unto Thomas Milles yearly during so much time of his life as she shall live the yearly sum of forty pounds for security or payment whereof I have bound or made some estate of some of my lands unto the said Thomas Milles that then my said gift and bequest unto my said wife as unto the said three hundred pounds shall be utterly void and my said son to have the said three hundred pounds and to pay the said yearly sum to the said Thomas Milles in discharge of my said lands from him. Furthermore my will is that my said wife shall pay to the said Thomas Milles or his assigns so much of the said yearly sum of forty pounds as to him of them shall grow due and payable between the time of my death and the time of her giving of the said security upon pain of forfeiture of double so much of the said three hundred pounds the benefit of which forfeiture my said son shall have for his payment of that which she shall fail to pay as aforesaid. ITEM; I do give and bequeath unto my said wife the one half of all my household stuffe and plate willing and appointing that she shall have the choice of my things thereof that she shall desire. ITEM; I will that my said wife shall have for and during the term of her natural life all the houses and lands in Whitley which I purchased of the Earl of Banbury and have made over to her as will appear by the deed thereof; and from and after the decease of my said wife I will that those houses and lands with the appurtenances and that from and after my decease all other lands tenements and hereditaments whereof I am now seized or estated in fee simple shall remain come and be unto my said son Thomas Kendricke for the term of his life and from and after his decease unto his son WILLIAM KENDRICKE and the heirs of the body of the same William Kendricke and for default of such issue unto HENRY KENDRICKE younger son of my said son Thomas Kendricke and the heirs of the body of the said Henry and for default of such issue unto my own right heirs for ever; and my will and meaning is that my said wife shall from time to time duly pay unto the King’s Majesty the yearly sum of thirteen pounds seventeen shillings and six pence and to Judeth the late wife of John Chaundler but now the wife of John Symes or to her assigns the yearly sum of forty pounds as the said several sums during my said wife’s life shall after my decease grow due and payable; for that she is to hold and enjoy the lands which are charged with or bound for the same. ITEM; I do give and bequeath to my said brother in law James Winch and his wife three pounds to buy each of them a ring forty shillings thereof for the man and twenty shillings for the woman; and to my brother NEWMAN and his wife four pounds to buy each of them a ring with a death’s head on it; and to my brother and sister BOSTOCKE three pounds to buy each of them a ring; and to my Goddaughter ANNE BOSTOCKE five pounds in money and to my sister JUDETH WINCH twenty shillings to buy her a ring and to my brother Mr ROGER KNIGHT and his wife three pounds to buy each of them a ring; and to my sister MAYOTT the widow thirty shillings to buy a ring. ITEM; I do give and bequeath to My brother ROBERT MAYOTT and his wife forty shillings to buy each of them a ring and ten pounds more I do give unto his wife provided always that she have it paid her to help to relieve her and her children; more I do give unto my wife’s Goddaughter SARA MAYOTT five pounds to be paid her by my said executor or executors at the day of her marriage or age of one and twenty years. ITEM; I do give unto Sir Henry Davy and his Lady four pounds to buy each of them a ring; and to SIR RICHARD LIDALL forty shillings to buy a ring //275// and to all his sons five pounds apiece and I do forgive him all that he doth owe me. ITEM; I give unto Doctor Birde forty shillings to buy him a ring and to my cousin THOMAS NEWMAN and his wife four pounds to buy each of them a ring and to my cousin JONES the widow twenty shillings to buy a ring; and to my cousin ELIZABETH BOWLE which married with WILLIAM BOWLE ten pounds in money and to my cousin the widow KING ten pounds; and to each servant men and maids which shall be dwelling with me at my decease twenty shillings apiece in money; all those legacies given to my friends whereof the times of payment are not before otherwise limited I will to be paid by my executor or executors within six months next after my decease and those given to my servants I will to be paid by my executor within fourteen days next after my decease. ITEM; I give unto my late servant Elizabeth Moore five pounds to be paid her by my executor or executors within six months next after my decease. ITEM; I give fifteen pounds in money to the three parishes of Reading to each parish five pounds to be paid by my executor or executors and given to the poor there the day of my burial; all the rest of my goods chattels ready money produce and rights whatsoever (my gifts and legacies aforesaid and such debts as it shall happen me to owe at my death being paid and performed and my funeral charges and the other charges gifts and legacies hereafter in this my will expressed being borne paid and defrayed according to my true intent and meaning) I do give and bequeath unto my said son Thomas Kendricke and I do earnestly entreat Almighty God to bless him that from henceforth he may live to God’s glory and the comfort of his own soul; and I do make and ordain my right trusty and loving friend Laurence Halsteed of London merchant sole executor of this my last will and testament for the special trust and confidence that I have of his faithful endeavour and great care in the performance thereof without taking any benefit thereby other than ten pounds which for his said care and endeavour therein as my executor to be taken; I do give and bequeath unto him earnestly desiring him to accept thereof and I will that out of my personal estate he shall be satisfied all charges and damages which he shall necessarily expend or sustain in prosecution or defence of any suit or suits in law or equity for or in any wise concerning his execution of this my will and testament. But if he shall refuse the executorship of this my will and testament which I am confident he will not or if he shall depart this life before he shall have performed so much thereof as to the executor belongs to perform then and from thenceforth I make and ordain my said son Thomas Kendrick sole executor of this my last will and testament or of so much thereof as by the said Mr Halsted shall not be performed upon condition that my said son before he shall take upon him the execution thereof or do any act as rightful or wrongful executor of this my will and testament shall give unto the said James Winche Thomas Williamson and Edward Johnson whom I make the overseers of the performance of this my will and testament or to any two of them good and sufficient security for the true payment of all or so many of the said legacies legacies which at the said refusal or death of the said Mr Halstead shall be unpaid; and if my said son shall fail of giving such a security as aforesaid (being by my said overseers or any of them required to give the same) or if he do not duly and truly pay all the same legacies according to the purport condition or true intent of such security after it shall be given then I do make and appoint the said James Winch Thomas Williamson and Edward Johnson the sole executors of this my last will and testament and for their care and pains therein to be taken I do give them twenty pounds apiece and I will that out of my personal estate they shall be satisfied all charges and damages which they shall necessarily expend or sustain in performance or defence of any suit or suits in law or equity for or in any wise concerning their execution or performance of this my will and testament or any of the trusts by me in them reposed as aforesaid; and then all the residue of my goods and chattels ready money and debts owing to me (my legacies and my debts if any shall be) being paid and my funeral charges and the other charges and things hereafter in this my will being borne paid and defrayed I do give fully to my said wife save only one hundred pounds which I give unto my said son revoking my said gift and bequest of the rest of my goods and chattels [product] and rights by me to him afore herein given but if he shall give security (and until he fails of paying of some of my legacies as aforesaid) I will that from and after such refusal or death of the said Mr Halstead and such security by my said son given as aforesaid my said son shall be and continue my executor and the said James Winche Thomas Williamson and Edward Johnson shall likewise continue my overseers of the performance of this my will and testament whom I will and appoint to be my overseers thereof which so ever of them the said Mr Halstead or my said son shall be my executor; and for the care and pains of my said overseers therein to be taken I give them five pounds apiece to be paid them by my executor; and I will that out of my personal estate each of them shall be satisfied all charges and damages which he shall necessarily expend or sustain in prosecution or defence of any suit or suits in law or equity for or in any wise concerning his causing or seeing this my will and testament to be performed or for or in performance of any of the trusts by me in my said overseers reposed as aforesaid; and for the charges of my funeral I refer it to my executor and overseers to order it as they in their discretions shall think fit wherein I desire a mean to be observed and no superfluity; and furthermore I do will and require my said son not only quietly to suffer but also by all means he lawfully may upon reasonable request to enable and raise the aforesaid six tenements and premises called the Barn House and all the several rents by me in or by my several deeds unto the said James Winche Thomas Williamson and Edward Johnson granted or intended to be conveyed as aforesaid to be held proved enjoyed and disposed to the several uses and intents by me in this my will afore declared and appointed upon pain of forfeiture of all that part and benefit of my personal estate which to my said son I have herein afore given and bequeathed; of which forfeiture I will and appoint full amends to be made for any and whatsoever disturbance or failing of my said son that shall happen to be contrary to this my will or intent; and the rest to be disposed to charitable uses within the said Borough by the Mayor and Burgesses thereof for the time being according to their discretions; and so giving hearty thanks to God for giving me time thus to settle my earthly estate I commit myself wholly to his safe protection; and revoking all former wills and bequests by me before this time made to this my last will and testament contained in seven sheets of paper written six of them on both sides and the seventh fully on the one side and almost through one on the other to each of all which sides my name is subscribed with my own hand I have set my seal the day and year first in this my will written – William Kendricke – sealed acknowledged and delivered by the said William Kendricke as his last will and testament in the presence of us – Thomas Williamson Richard Crockford John Miles
Proved 19th March 1634 (1635) by Lawrence Halstead Executor
Comments or questions are welcome.