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Africanus, Scipio (c. 1702–1720), servant, was born of an African family that most likely came from west Africa, where many Bristol merchants bought or captured black men and women for transport to the American colonies. He became the servant of Charles William Howard, ...

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Ashford, Mary Ann (1787–1870), domestic servant and autobiographer, was born on 30 October 1787 in London, where she was baptized at St Mary Woolnoth on 2 December 1787, the second child of Joseph Ashford (d. 1800), tanner, and his wife, Jane, née...

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Barber, Francis (c. 1745–1801), servant, was born a slave in Jamaica; his birth name and family are unknown. He was brought to England by Richard Bathurst, father to Johnson's friend of that name, who had him baptized and named Francis Barber, and sent him to a school in ...

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Coker, Frances [Fanny] (1767–1820), freed slave and domestic servant, was born on 26 August 1767 on Mountravers plantation, Nevis, in the West Indies, the first of five children of Black Polly (b. c.1752, d. in or after 1823). Her mother was probably enslaved in ...

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Colling, Mary Maria (1804–1853), poet and domestic servant, was born on 20 August 1804 (although she later claimed to have been born a year later), in Tavistock, Devon, and was baptized there on 2 September 1804, the daughter of Edmund Colling (1769/70–1855), husbandman and assistant to the surveyor of the highways, and his wife, ...

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Cowper [known as Shell], Agnes (b. c. 1559, d. after 1619), servant and vagrant, was born in the parish of St Olave, Southwark, Surrey, the daughter of William Cowper (d. c.1565), an embroiderer, and his wife (d. c.1570), whose name is unknown. Her life story is illuminated by the chance of her encounter in 1619 with the exhaustive record keepers of the parish of ...

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Fettiplace [née Poole; other married name Rogers], Elinor, Lady Fettiplace (b. c. 1570, d. in or after 1647), writer on household management, probably born at Pauntley, Gloucestershire, was the eldest daughter of Sir Henry Poole (d. 1616) of Sapperton in Gloucestershire...

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Fletcher, William (b. 1773, d. in or after 1841), valet, was the son of John Fletcher (c.1750–1808), a farmer, and his wife, Mary (c.1750–1800). He was already a manservant at Burgage Manor, Southwell, Nottinghamshire, when Catherine Byron and her son arrived there in July 1803. On 23 July 1804 he married ...

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Hochee, John (1789–1869), servant and landowner, was born Ho Chee, otherwise Ho Chi or He Zhi, in Canton, China, in 1789, the son of Ho Foo, a mandarin. After education he probably worked for the East India Company in Canton, since he met and became a trusted servant of ...

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Jermy [née Withers], Louise Jane [Louisa] (1877–1952), domestic servant and autobiographer, was born on 30 January 1877 at Howe Lane, Romsey, Hampshire, on the Broadlands estate where her maternal grandmother, Sarah Medley, was laundress to the ‘great house’. Her mother, Selina (...

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Alice L'Estrange, Lady L'Estrange (1585–1656) by John Hoskins, 1617 private collection; photograph courtesy of The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art

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L'Estrange [née Stubbe], Alice, Lady L'Estrange (1585–1656), keeper of household and estate accounts, was the only child of Richard Stubbe (d. 1619), a lawyer, and his second wife, Anne Goding, formerly widow of John Le Strange (d. 1582). Richard Stubbe...

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Lloyd, Rachel (1722–1803), housekeeper, was born on 10 January 1722 in Carmarthenshire, the eldest child of John Lloyd (1702–1728), landowner, of Dan-yr-allt, Llangadog, Carmarthenshire, and his wife, Mary (bap. 1701, d. 1764), only child of William Lloyd of Alltycadno, also a Carmarthenshire...

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Henry Moat (1871–1940) by Christopher Richard Nevinson, 1918 © The University of Hull Art Collection / Bridgeman Art Library

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Moat, Henry (1871–1940), servant, was born on 2 August 1871 at 17 The Cragg, Whitby, in the North Riding of Yorkshire, the son of John Moat (b. 1827/8), master joiner, and his wife, Jane, née Carter (b. 1831/2). By his own account the ...

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Moraley, William (1698–1762), indentured servant and writer, was born on 25 February 1698 and baptized on 1 March at Christ Church, Greyfriars, Newgate, London, the only child of William Moraley (d. 1725), a journeyman watchmaker, and Martha, née Mason (d. 1740)...

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See Indian visitors

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See Bruen, John

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Rhodes [née Brittan], Elizabeth (1759–1836), housekeeper and Methodist leader, was born in Scotland, the daughter of Captain Brittan of the Queen's regiment of dragoons. In 1760 her father resigned his commission and moved to York, his wife's home town, but in 1765 he eloped with her maid. ...

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Wolley [other married name Challiner], Hannah (b. 1622?, d. in or after 1674), author of works on cookery, medicine, and household affairs, never mentions her father in her writings, and his name is unknown. Her mother and elder sisters 'were very well skilled in Physick and Chirurgery', and she learned a little about medical practice from them, and more under the patronage of a noblewoman, almost certainly ...