Genealogy Notes for the Village of Upton, Oxfordshire
A miscellany of pictures and data arising out of research into the KIRBY's family trees (but not all linked to them). This is a work in progress so please treat the data with appropriate caution. For related information see List, Place Index and Wills Index

Location and general description

Upton stands on the southern side of the Windrush valley and just upstream from Burford, Oxon. South of it lay Fitt's quarry workings, less well known than quarries at Taynton, Oxon, which were on the opposite bank of the river and supplied stone for the rebuilding of London after the great fire).  The upton quarries were operated by the KEMPSTER family, which included the well known master mason Christopher KEMPSTER. KEMPSTER took his stone from this quarry overland south to the river Thames at Radcot and then down to London by barge.
Cottages in Upton, nr Burford, Oxfordshire
Today Upton is a small place and in 1738, according to the Vicar of Burford, it was not much larger, the combined villages of Upton and Signet only holding 19 houses.

The parish of Upton with Signet is complicated as it also includes a detached portion of land to the West of Burford, Oxon.

In 2 Geo 2 (c1827) there was a chancery case, Jeremiah BEZLEY and his wife Jane. v. William HAYNES and John JORDAN, concerning the Manor or lordship of Bury Barnes cum Membris, in Burford, Upton, and Synett alias Signet (Oxford), and the defendant HAYNES copyhold lands in Upton, in the parish of Burford. Customs of manor.

In the early 19th C at least some of the local pasture was used for sheep.
Stolen or strayed, out of a ground at Upton, near Burford, Oxon, on Monday night the 8th inst. or early on Teusday morning, - TWENTY EWE LAMBS the property of Thomas Stayt, and are amrked by a bit being taken out of the under part of the off ear, and rather of the Leicestershire breed. If stolen, whoever will give information so that the offender or offenders may be convicted, shall on such conviction, receive FIFTY GUINEAS reward, on application to Mr. Waters, solicitor, Burford.
Burford, Aug. 11, 1808.
Jackson's Oxford Journal (Oxford, England), Saturday, August 20, 1808; Issue 2886.

In 1809 the village had an Inn called the Bird in Hand
To be LET, and entered upon at Michaelmas next, - The well known INN, called the Bird in Hand, with good stables and other conveniences, at Upton, near Burford, and two closes of pature theor adjoining
Apply to Mr. North, solicitor, Woodstock.
Jackson's Oxford Journal (Oxford, England), Saturday, August 5, 1809; Issue 2936.

Also in 1809 a government report commented that Mr FAULKNER of Burford had two teams of oxen and that the use of oxen teams in preference for horses was a feature of the Burford area (Board of Agriculture, 1809, 294, 297).

On 19 Jan 1810, Mr. TIDEY's Bird in Hand was the venue for the auction of twenty lots of 'fine ELM TIMBER TREES, now standing and growing at the Priory in Burford, Upton, and Signett'. (Jackson's Oxford Journal (Oxford, England), Saturday, January 13, 1810; Issue 2959)

The 1830 poll of Knights of the Shire lists five who owned freeholds in Upton and Signett.


Upton Paper Mill

In the 18th C Upton was the site of one of the Windrush valley paper mills. During the history of Upton papermill it was operated for a time by the HATTON family.  


The JORDAN family

Elizabeth JORDAN (chr. 1721-1799) who married (abt 1748, at Shilton, Oxon.) Thomas HATTON of Widford, Oxon., papermaker, was the daughter of John JORDAN of Upton & Elizabeth (nee GALLAWAY) his wife. Their marriage bond states that Thomas HATTON was at that time 'of Upton' and mentions a John JORDAN of Upton who was a weaver. Assuming this was the same John JORDAN, a link with the JORDANs of Witney, Oxon.,  is probable as they were clothiers and had property in Burford.

Related links

A selection of links to other sites with information about this place


Any transcripts and images on this page are Copyright R I Kirby 2005 unless stated otherwise.