A shedule of special misdemeaners
Item he hyred towe minstrels to lead a hundred yonge youth to go into the said Churchyard & there in mowinge grasse to make a spoyle & while he was so doinge he called for xxxtie potts of drinke to bestowe vppon his companye & he stood in the streete callinge owt the vicar yf he durst come out at the same tyme & yat with showtinge exclamations
This list of 'special misdemeaners' against Thomas Jacson is also preserved from the Easter 1604 sessions, but bears no internal date. It contains eight charges, all but one of which appear to relate to offences against the church or church property: Jacson allegedly led a riotous affray in the churchyard, beating the vicar's people; reviled the vicar on another occasion; broke down the gate into the churchyard; hired soldiers to destroy the grass in the churchyard; [extract printed in text]; kept one Humphrey Shropshire in his house till Humphrey's lands were all expended; defamed the vicar's wife; and abused the bishop of Coventry and Lichfield along with others. This last charge may have led the bishop, William Overton, to write to the justices of peace against 'one Thomas Iackson.' His letter is a single sheet, dated 15 December 1604 from Eccleshall Castle, and is preserved amongst the papers from the Epiphany 1604/5 sessions (Nos 67-8). With apparent exasperation, the bishop alleges that Jacson '...is now become suche an intollerable malefactor, and continuall offendor, in worde, and deede, that no honest man can well abide him. And therfore yt may please you to take suche order for his reformacion, as may worke his throughe amendment, & force him to become a new man, by very extremity of lawe, or else neither God can bee served in the Churche, nor the Towne, where he dwelleth bee in any quietnes....' Perhaps, however, the bishop's letter of corroboration was intended to accompany Roger Steventon's letter of complaint.
Record title: Charges Alleged against Thomas Jacson, Victualler
Shelfmark: Q/SR/91, item 63
Repository location: Stafford
Easter 1604; English; paper; single sheet; 305mm x 205mm, written on 1 side; mounted on guard stub and preserved within blue folder.