Biography of William Chester 1509-1574

Before 1505 Richard Welles Mercer and [his mother] Joan Hill were married.

In 1509 William Chester was born to John Chester and Joan Hill.

Before 1515 [his step-father] John Milbourne and [his mother] Joan Hill were married.

Before 1550 William Chester (age 41) and Elizabeth Lovett were married.

In 1554 William Chester (age 45) was elected Sheriff of London.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 07 Feb 1557. [The vijth day of February master Offley (age 57), the lord mayor, and divers aldermen, taking their barge, went to Greenwich, Kent [Map] to the Queen's (age 40)] grace, and ther she mad ym [knight, he] behyng mayre, and master William Chester (age 48), altherman, mayd hym knyght the sam tyme and day.

In 1560 William Chester (age 51) was elected Lord Mayor of London.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 05 Jun 1560. The v day of June was bered master Husse (deceased) sqwyre, and a grett marchand-ventorer and of Muskovea and haburdassher, and with a C. mornars of men and vomen; hand he had v pennons of armes, and a cotte armur, and ij haroldes of armes master Clarenshux (age 50) and master Somersett; and ther was Powlles qwyre and the clarkes of London, and bered at sant Martens at Ludgatt by ys sun; and all the cherche hangyd and ys plasse with blake and armes, and a vj dosen and d' of skochyons of armes; and master Alley the redere of Powlles prychyd boyth days; ser Wylliam Garrett (age 53), ser Wylliam Chester (age 51), master Loge the shreyf, master Argalle, master Bulle, and master Husse (his) sune, and dyver odur mornars, and after to the plasse to dener, a godly plasse.... Barwyke by captayn .... mantyll frys jerkens all gunners.

Before 23 Jul 1560 [his wife] Elizabeth Lovett died.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 23 Jul 1560. The xxiij day of July was bered my good lade [Chester,] the wyff of ser Wylliam Chester (age 51) knyght and draper and altherman and marchand of the stapull, and the howse and the cherche and the strette hangyd with blake and armes, and she gayff to xx [20] pore women good rossett gownes, and he gayff unto iiij [4] althermen blake gownes and odur men gownes and cottes to the nombur of a C [100] and to women gownes ... and ther was ij [2] harold(s) of armes; and then cam the corse and iiij [4] morners beyryng of iiij [4] pennon of armes abowtt, and cam morners a-for and after, and the clarkes syngyng; and master Beycon dyd pryche over nyght; and the morow after to the howse to dener; vj dosen of skochyons and a d' of bokeram.

Note. P. 240. Funeral of lady Chester. Sir William Chester, draper, (son of John Chester, citizen and draper of London,) sheriff in 1554–5, lord mayor in 1560–1, was buried "with his wives," in the church of St. Edmund the King in Lombard-street. He was the son of sir John Chester, by Margaret, afterwards re-married to sir John Milborne, draper, lord mayor in 1522. Several memorials to these and other of his relatives were in the church above named; but Stowe's account of them is confused. Sir William Chester "dwelled at the upper end of Lombard-street, over against the George, nere to St. Edmund's church, where he is buried." Arms, Per pale argent and sable, a chevron engrailed between three goat's heads counterchanged, horned or, within a bordure gules bezantee. (List by Wm. Smith, Rouge-dragon.)

Henry Machyn's Diary. 24 Nov 1560. The xxiiij day cam downe from my lord mare (age 51) that sertten of craftes shuld walke in evere markett, with a whyt rod in ther handes, to loke that men shuld take testons of the ratt as the quen has proclamyd in all markettes thrughe all London, that the markett folke take the money, be-cause the rumore rane that they shuld falle.... master Nuwwell, and Te Deum sung .... with all the quer.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 07 Apr 1561. The vij day of Aprell dyd pryche at sant Mare spytyll the nuwe byshope of Wynchester master Horne (age 51), and ther was all the masters of the hospetall, and the chylderyn in bluw cotes, and my lord mayre (age 52) and the althermen, and mony worshephull men.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 08 Apr 1561. The viij day of Aprell dyd pryche at sant Mare spytyll the byshope of Durham master Pylkyngtun (age 41), and ther was gret audyense, and my lord mare (age 52) and my masters the althermen, with the masters of the hospetall.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 10 Jun 1561. The x day of June was grantyd at Yeld-halle [Map] by my lord mare (age 52) and my masters the althermen and the commen consell iij xv toward the beldyng of Powlles chyrche [Map] and the stepulle, with as grett sped as they may gett tymbur rede [ready], and odur thynges, and worke-men.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 15 Jun 1561. The xv day dyd pryche at Powlles crosse [Map] master Nowell (age 44) the dene of Powlles, and mad a goodly sermon, and my lord mayre (age 52) and the althermen and the most of the worshephull craftes wher commondyd to be ther, and ther wher grett audyense.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 16 Jun 1561. The xvj day of June was the masters the Grossers fest; ther dynyd my lord mare (age 52), ser Roger Chamley, ser John Lyons (age 47), sir Marten Bowse, ser Wylliam Huett, and ser Wylliam Garrett, [master] Loge, master John Whytt, master Cryster Draper, master Rowe, and master Cha[mley? master] Marten, master Baskerfeld (age 44), and master chamburlayn of London, and mony worshephull men and mony lades and gentyllwomen; and grett chere; boyth the whettes [waits] and clarkes syngyng, and a nombur of vyolles playhyng, and syngyng, and they had xxx bokes [bucks] [and] (blank) stages.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 16 Jun 1561. The xvj day of June my lord mare (age 52) and the althermen [were] sent for unto the cowrte at Grenwyche [Map].

Henry Machyn's Diary. 17 Jun 1561. The xvij day of June my lord mare (age 52) and the althermen and the commen conselle how that and watt men shuld loke and over-se the workemen, and what men shuld take hed too in alle placys for the beldyng of Powlles [Map], and to chose men of knolleg to loke and over-se the worke and the workmen.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 14 Jul 1561. The xiiij day of July was nuw graveled with sand from the Charterhowse through Smyth feld [Map], and under Nuwgate, and through sant Nycolas shambull [Map], Chepe-syd, and Cornhyll, unto Algatt and to Whyt-chapell, and all thes plases where hangyd with cloth of arres and carpetes and with sylke, and Chepe-syd hangyd with cloth of gold and cloth of sylver and velvett of all colurs and taffatas in all plases, and all the craftes of Londun standyng in ther leverey from sant Myghell unto Algatt, and then cam mony servyng-men rydyng, and then the pensyonars and gentyll men, and then knyghtes, and after lordes, and then the althermen in skarlett, and the serjant(s) of armes, and then the haroldes of armes in ther cottes armurs, and then my lord mare (age 52) bayryng here septer; [then the lord Hunsdon (age 35) bearing the sword; and then came the Queen's (age 27) grace, and her footmen richly habited; and ladies and gentlemen; then] all lordes' men and knyghtes' [men in their masters' liveries; and at] Whytt-chapell my lord mare and the althermen [took their leave of] here grace, and so she toke her way to-ward [her pro]gresse.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 01 Aug 1561. The furst day of August, was lammas day, my [lord mayor (age 52)] and the althermen and all the craftes in London in ther [liveries, met] to chuse the shreyff of London, that was master Bas[kerville] altherman; and the sam day was chosen master Gyl[bert,] nuw altherman in the stede of master Altham lat[e alderman] and clothworker of London, the wyche he was dysmy[ssed].

Note. P. 265. Master Avenon chosen sheriff. Son of Robert Avenon, or Avenand, of King's Norton in Worcestershire; sheriff 1561-2; lord mayor 1569-70, and knighted. He was "buried at St. Peter's, at the Cross in Cheap." Arms, Ermine, on a pale gules a cross flory-de-lis argent, on a chief sable a mascle between two escallops of the third. (List by Wm. Smith, Rouge-dragon.) The epitaph of his widow "the lady Alice Avenon," at St. Laurence in the Jewry, will be seen in Stowe. She was the daughter and co-heir of Thomas Huchen, citizen and mercer, and married first Hugh Methwold mercer, and secondly John Blundell mercer, and had children by both, who are enumerated. The marriage took place in his mayoralty, as thus recorded in the register of Allhallows, Breadstreet: "1570, Oct. 22, was married sir Alexander Avenon, lord mayor, and mistress Blunden, widow, by a license, within his own house." Malcolm, ii. 12.

Note. P. 265. Master Baskerville chosen sheriff. Humphrey Baskerville, mercer, buried in the Mereers' chapel, 1563. Arms, Argent, on a chevron gules between three hurts a crescent or. (List by Wm. Smith, Rouge-dragon.)

Note. P. 265. Master Gilbert chosen alderman. Edward Gilbert, goldsmith. Never sheriff or lord mayor. Arms, Azure, a chevron engrailed ermine between three spread eagles or. (List by Wm. Smith, Rouge-dragon.)

Henry Machyn's Diary. 30 Sep 1561. The xxx day of September my lord mayre (age 52) and the althermen and the new shreyffes toke ther barges at the iij cranes in the Vintre and so to Westmynster, and so into the Cheker, and ther toke ther hoythe [oath]; and ser Rowland Hyll whent up, and master Hogys toke ser Rowland Hyll a choppyng kneyff, and one dyd hold a whyt rod, and he with the kneyff cute the rod in sunder a-for all the pepull; and after to London to ther plases to dener, my lord mayre and all the althermen and mony worshephulle men.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 16 Jul 1563. The xvj day of July was bered in the parryche of saynt Step[hen's by] London stone master Berre sqwyre and draper and marchand of the stapull, [with a] harold of armes, and he had a cott armur and a penon .... of skochyons of armes, and ys plase was hangyd with blake .... the cherche hangyd with blake and armes, and [there were] all the craft in ther leverey; ser Wylliam Ch[ester] (age 54) cheyff mornar, and master Argall next, and master John Bere, [and then the] corse with a pall of blake velvett and mony .... mad the sermon, and all dune to the plase [to dinner, for there was a] grett dener.... bered in lytyl Allalows .... master Crolley (age 46) mad the [sermon] ....

Around 1574 William Chester (age 65) died.