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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 ACC/0840
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Full title: WOOD FAMILY
Date(s): 1819-1910
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 0.15 linear metres (3 bundles).
Name of creator(s): Wood | family | of Littleton


Administrative/Biographical history:

Edward Wood was a merchant living in the City of London. Around 1663 he purchased an estate at Littleton in Middlesex, which passed on to his son Thomas. Thomas Wood's son Edward did much to extend the family holdings in the Littleton area, purchasing, for example, the Chantry House and the Malthouse in Littleton. His son, Thomas, was the one who finally purchased the Manor of Littleton itself from Gilbert Lambell in 1749. It then remained in the hands of the Wood family until 1873, when the original mansion (built by Edward Wood 1663-5) was largely burnt down and Thomas Wood built a new one at Gwernyfed, Brecon, Wales.

The Woods were substantial landowners with property in a number of counties. The Middleham estate in Yorkshire was purchased in the seventeenth century and the estate at Gwernyfed was acquired in 1776 upon the marriage of Thomas Wood to Mary, daughter and heiress of Sir Edward Williams of Langoid Castle. In Middlesex the lordships of Astlam and Littleton were held by the family, and Captain Thomas Wood was lord of the manor of Littleton in 1906 (The Victoria History of the County of Middlesex, Vol. 2., 1911). The Littleton estate, comprising over 1250 acres in Littleton, Shepperton, Ashford and Laleham, was broken up and sold from 1892, although Captain Thomas Wood still owned much of the land in Littleton parish in the early twentieth century.

Members of the family followed careers, for the most part, in law, government, and the armed forces. The first Thomas Wood to live at Littleton (d 1723) continued his father's merchant business and held the appointment of Ranger of Hampton Court. His son Robert was a scholar and Doctor of Laws and, in the next generation, Thomas (1708-99) was Treasurer of the Inner Temple. His descendants entered the government, at home and overseas, often preceding this by military careers. Colonel Thomas Wood (1777-1860), Member of Parliament for Brecon for forty years, commanded the Royal East Middlesex Regiment of Militia for fifty six years and encamped with them at Aldershot in his eightieth year. His son Thomas (1804-72) commanded the 3rd Battalion Grenadier Guards in the early stages of the Crimean War, Prior to this he represented the County of Middlesex in Parliament, Thomas his son (b.1853) followed his father into the Grenadiers and saw action in the Sudan. Upon leaving the regular army he became a colonel in the Brecknockshire Rifle Volunteers and entered local government. Famous soldiers in the family include Charles Wood (1790-1877) who fought in the Peninsula, and at Waterloo, and his nephew General Sir David Wood (1812-94) an officer in the Crimean campaign and the Indian Mutiny.

Throughout the nineteenth century the family consolidated its position among the landed gentry by contracting alliances with the aristocracy. In successive generations three Thomas Woods married, respectively, the daughter of 1st Marquess of Londonderry, the grand-daughter of 4th Duke of Grafton, and the daughter of 1st. Lord Tollemache. Colonel Thomas Wood and his wife enjoyed the friendship of William IV and Queen Adelaide and the King nominated Wood to be one of his executors. Colonel Wood was host to George IV at Gwernyfed, and members of the royal family visited Littleton.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the Wood family, including marriage settlement of Major Charles Wood, youngest son of Thomas Wood of Littleton and Miss Susannah Mary Watkins, 1819; marriage settlement of Captain Edward Alexander Wood and Miss Janet Alexander, 1871; probate copy of will of William Wood, rector of Lawford, Essex, 1821; probate of Sir Charles Alexander Wood of Littleton, 1849/90; probate of Major General Edward Wood, of Shorncliffe, Kent, 1898. Also papers relating to Moss Hall, Hampton, including deeds.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

ACC/0840/001: Family papers;
ACC/0840/002-003: Moss Hall papers.

Conditions governing access:

Available for general access.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to this collection rests with the City of London.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Gifted to the Archive in July 1963.

Allied Materials

Related material:

The main collection of Wood papers, including a detailed history, are at reference ACC/0262. More papers relating to the Wood Family can also be found under reference codes ACC/0421, ACC/0423, ACC/0928, ACC/1030, ACC/1302, ACC/1362, ACC/1713, ACC/2456, ACC/2916 and ACC/2917.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Records prepared May to September 2011.

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