Born in 1747 - Died before 28th September 1795


© Canterbury City Council Museums Service 2011

An alderman of Canterbury, Kent, and a son of Richard Barham, he was born in 1747, and died 29th October 1795. He had a child with his housekeeper Elizabeth, daughter of Mathew Fox, of Minster in the Isle of Thanet, who died in 1814:

1 Richard Harris Barham, born 6th December 1788, baptized at St Mary Magdale, Burgate, Canterbury, and died 17th June 1845.

With Mary Bolden, he had another child:

2 Sarah Bolden alias Sarah Barham.


A miniature portrait


Two further miniatures of Alderman Barham


Alan Mayor in his article describes him, rather unkindly I feel, as enormously fat, weighing 19 stone, although another source states 27 stone before he was 48 years old.

His lengthy will is dated 8th July 1795, and was proved 28th September of the same year. He leaves to his natural son 'by me begotten on the Body of Elizabeth Fox' all his manor or reputed manor, messuage, farm and lands in the parishes of Denton and Swingfield. This undoubtedly refers to Tappington Everard. These were at the time in the occupation of Richard Downing and Barham himself. He further left his son all his other lands and woodland in the parishes of Upper Hardres, Kingston and Barham, all in Kent, and then in the tenure or occupation of William Fox and again Barham , other than Charlton Wood, and also his five pieces of meadow or pasture land in the parish of Chartham, Kent, which his late father had devised him, and were then in the occupation of John Cloak, and to which he had agreed to grant a lease to to the Reverend Sir John Fagg Baronet for a term of years. A trust was established in the names of Morris Robinson of Charlotte Street, Portland Place, Middlesex, John Abbott of Saint Dunstan's, near the City of Canterbury, and Henry Buckton of the city of Canterbury, for and during the life of his said son Richard Harris Barham, in trust to present the contingent remainder after the death of his son to his children, he nevertheless to enjoy the profits of the estate. The property was to be given them as tenants in common, and if there were no heirs then he wills the property to his natural daughter Sarah Barham, before called Sarah Bolden, by him' begotten on the body of Mary Bolden spinster', afterwards the wife of Manly Williams, and now the wife of ----- Smith. One also learns he had a niece Charlotte Barham.

Elizabeth Fox
Elizabeth Fox

He had numerous other properties. For example, he leaves his daughter Sarah Barham a messuage or farm in the parishes of Bridge and Patrixbourne. An annuity of £100 per annum is left to Elizabeth Fox, who at the time the will was made was living with him. Other goods, such as plate and household goods were to be equally divided between his children.

He was admitted a freeman of the city of Canterbury by birth in 1769.

He was buried, as he wished, in the parish church of Upper Hardres.


Information and images supplied by Dr Thomas Gilbert Barham Howe.
Centre for Kentish Studies: Various deeds and copies of wills, CCA-CC-P/E/CP/11/11.
National Archives: will of Richard Harris Barham, PROB 11/1265.
Cowper, Joseph Meadows FSA, The Roll of the Freemen of the city of Canterbury 1392 - 1800, Canterbury 1903, page 5, accessible online: