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TitleLewthwaite Family of Millom
DescriptionA small collection of family and estate papers relating to the Lewthwaites of Broadgate, Millom, Cumbria. The collection spans over 5 generations, from William Lewthwaite (1766-1845) to the current baronet Sir David Rainald Lewthwaite. It has been structured to accommodate a diverse range of papers which portray a privileged lifestyle, but one that evolves around the hard work of managing an estate as well as a commitment to performing a variety of public duties.

The personal papers contain great detail and provide an insight into family relationships. Correspondence about important family events has survived including the creation of William Lewthwaite as 1st Baronet in 1881, and letters from Charles Gilfred Lewthwaite to family members while on active service in France during World War I.

The Lewthwaites have always had a keen involvement in public life and the collection reflects their participation in both national and local affairs such as the parliamentary review of county districts and the local parish church council.

The collection also contains a strong element of estate papers including plans, tenancy agreements, sales and valuations. There are also plans relating to the construction of the Whitehaven and Furness Junction Railway. The management of the estate is evident in legal records which include some case papers about disputes over land belonging to the estate. There is a series of records about the Gunson (Ulpha) Trust and Willaim Lewthwaite's involvement as 1 of the trustees.
Extent4 subfonds
ContextThe Lewthwaite family can trace their decent in an unbroken line from the reign of King Henry VIII through 15 generations. At the start of the Tudor dynasty Thomas Broadgate, who was responsible for purchasing 'Broadgate', was described as a yeoman (a man holding a small landed estate, a freeholder beneath the rank of gentleman). When Thomas died in 1667 his will showed that he was a yeoman farmer of considerable means. After the restoration of Charles II in 1660 the famly were able to consolidate their position at Broadgate. They began to expand their business activities by apprenticing younger sons to tradesmen or merchants in Lancaster, Newcastle and London. Indeed survivng correspondence from the eighteenth century show members of the family as prominent merchants in the fast expanding town and port of Whitehaven. Furthermore, plantations were purchased at Dominica and Antigua. John Lewthwaite of Broadgate was a pioneer of the local industrial revolution having iron ore interests near Dalton-in-Furness. He also had business interests at Maryport where he was a partner in a blast furnace enterprise.

Towards the end of the century William Lewthwaite of Broadgate was bequeathed a very substantial estate (£100,000) from his second cousin once removed, John Lewthwaite of Whitehaven. This wealth made an enormous difference to the family and by the nineteenth century they were well established among the gentry class with all the changes in lifestyle, outlook and responsibilities that this entailed. During this time the Lewthwaite family were marrying into famillies of equal wealth and social status, derived from a mixture of commerce and land ownership. For example the Taylors of Finsthwaite, the Birleys of Egremont and the Armisteads of Whitehaven.

When John Lewthwaite was born in 1792 he was very much groomed into the role of the local squire. He was sent away to school and became a magistrate and deputy lieutenant for Cumberland, both roles bringing a great deal of prestige and responsibility. Male descendants have tended to follow a similar path, receiving an education at Rugby before progressing onto Trinity College, Cambridge and then into roles involved with public and local affairs. John Lewthwaite's eldest son, William died in 1867 leaving only 1 son William born in 1853. Trustees were appointed to manage the estate until William came of age in 1874. William did not inherit a healthy estate due to the effects of the agricultural depression and the mismanagement of the trustees. However with a great deal of hard work he managed to put the estate on a much better footing. For his services to the Conservative Party and Cumberland he was created a Baronet in 1927.

Sir William Lewthwaite the first Baronet was succeeded at Broadgate and in the Baronetcy in 1927 by his only surviving son William who was severely wounded in the Great War. His second son Charles Gilfrid was killed in action in 1917. Sir William Lewthwaite the second Baronet died in 1933 aged 51 years. His widow Breyl survived until 1970 and was responsible for transcribing many of the family papers. He was succeeded by William Anthony Lewthwaite the third Baronet who died in 1993. He was a solicitor in London and transferred the Broadgate estate to his younger brother Rainald in the 1950's. Sir Rainald Gilfrid Lewthwaite the fourth Baronet was succeeeded by his son David, the 5th Baronet on his death in 2003.
ArrangementThe catalogue is arranged into different sections according to document type or provenance. Family and personal papers 1786-1965; public affairs 1862-1933; estate records 1739-1951 and legal papers 1734-1913.
Catalogue levelFonds

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CodePerson/Corporate namesDates
NA924Lewthwaite; William (1766-1845); land owner and J. P.1766-1845
NA925Lewthwaite; John (1792-1863); landowner, farmer, magistrate and Deputy Lieutenant1792-1863
NA926Lewthwaite; William (1826-1867); landowner, J. P. and Deputy Lieutenant1826-1867
NA927Lewthwaite; Sir; William (1853-1927); 1st Baronet; landowner, J. P. and Deputy Lieutenant1853-1927
NA933Lewthwaite; Sir; William Anthony (1912-1993); 3rd Baronet; solicitor1912-1993
NA935Lewthwaite; Sir; David Rainald (b 1940); 5th Baronetb 1940
NA934Lewthwaite; Sir; Rainald Gilfrid (1913-2003); 4th Baronet; landowner, Brigadier, O. B. E. and C. V. O.1913-2003
NA932Lewthwaite; Sir; William (1882-1933); 2nd Baronet; landowner, farmer and J. P.1882-1933
NA939Lewthwaite; Gilfrid MacIver (1922-1943)1922-1943
NA938Lewthwaite; Charles Gilfrid (1884-1917); Lieutenant (Royal Field Artillery); M. C.1884-1917
NA937Lewthwaite; Lady; Beryl Mary Stopford (1889-1970)1889-1970
NA936Lewthwaite; Lady; Helena Jane (1856-1934)1856-1934
NA946Lewthwaite; Joseph (1836-1886); Reverend; deacon, priest, curate and vicar1836-1886
NA945Lewthwaite; George (1868-1941); Reverend; curate, vicar, rector and chaplain1868-1941
NA953Lewthwaite; George (1839-1912); landowner, estate manager and J. P.1839-1912
CodePlace names
NA1389Hotel Bernasconi/St Moritz/Switzerland
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