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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 ACC/1156
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1670-1931
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 4.5 linear metres (194 documents).
Name of creator(s): Mitchison | family | of London


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Mitchison family came from Northumberland. William Mitchison, whose will was dated 24 March 1817, owned the Benwell estate, Northumberland, and property in Newcastle-on-Tyne. This descended in turn to his two sons. Anthony, described as formerly of Wood Street, Cheapside, London, silk manufacturer, but late of Sunbury, died unmarried in 1836, aged 51 years, and was buried at Hampton. John the elder is described in a deed of 1834 as late of Gutter Lane, silk manufacturer, now of Sunbury. He owned property in Shoreditch, Islington, Soho and the City of London in the 1820's, although no draft or original deeds of these transactions are included in this accession. There are likewise no early deeds for the Manor Estate, Sunbury, which he probably purchased about 1828, and property in Lambeth which was acquired by him or his son, William Anthony Mitchison the elder. In 1839 he was operated on by Sir Astley Cooper, but, unfortunately, the shock of the operation rendered him temporarily insane. He eventually recovered his senses but the management of the estates, until his death in 1856, fell largely to his son, William Anthony the elder. By this time his elder surviving son, John Mitchison, the younger, was insane, though not certified as such until an inquiry in 1864 (ref: ACC/1156/69-71, 73-4).

After his father's death, William Anthony managed the estate on behalf of his brother John, whose Committee he became, his sister Juliana, who was domiciled in France, and himself, and acquired property in Kensington, Sunbury, Harmondsworth and elsewhere. William Anthony succeeded to John's estate in 1899, and on his death in 1900 left the estates to his three surviving sons, the Revd. Richard Stovin Mitchison, Herbert Sturges Mitchison and Arthur Maw Mitchison. They reached an agreement about the division of the estates between them (ref: ACC/1156/39), the properties being jointly managed until this could be effected. The Benwell and Sunbury Manor estates were sold, in 1903 and 1902-21 respectively, as were several other properties. The records end in the 1920's.

The Mitchisons inherited estates in Withern, Lincs., from the Stovin family (ref: CC/1156/178). Richard Henry Stovin bequeathed his estates to Richard Stovin Maw, eldest son of his deceased half-sister, Margaret. These lands were subsequently left mortgaged and in trust to his daughters, Catherine Sturges Maw, who died unmarried in 1902, and Harriett Jane Stovin Maw, who married William Anthony Mitchison the elder. The Withern Estate was sold by her sons in 1918-19 (ref: ACC/1156/167-177). Harriett and Catherine Maw were also beneficiaries under the will of their uncle, Joseph Sturges (d.1875), who set up a trust for the benefit of his nieces and nephews (ref: ACC/1156/190).


Scope and content/abstract:

These records relate mostly to the estates of the Mitchison family and their relations in Middlesex, London, Northumberland, Surrey and elsewhere, which were managed by William Anthony Mitchison, the elder, on behalf of his father John Mitchison, the elder, his brother John Mitchison, the younger, and himself in the mid and late nineteenth century. The remainder of the accession is composed of private papers of members of the Mitchison family. These are generally draft marriage settlements, drafts wills, and draft executors' papers. There are also some papers relating to trusts and shares. The private papers of John Mitchison the younger include, besides papers relating to the inquiry into his state of mind, transcripts of accounts of his estate from 1856-99, and records relating to his establishment in Brighton.

This accession was originally composed of forty bundles, bearing solicitors' numbering on the wrapper, where these remained. Most also bore labels giving a rough summary of the contents-not always correct-the sectors' number and a title assigning it to a member of the Mitchison, Maw or Sturges family (ref: ACC/1156/154). These have been used as sectional headings in the catalogue, and where the label does not survive, or is defective, the bundle has been assigned to the member of the family who from the contents, seems likely to have been the original assignee. In a few cases, new titles have had to be substituted, as in 178, 191-3. Inside each bundle was one or more bundles which form the basic unit of this list. A corresponding list of the original larger bundles with the new numbering of the inner bundles is appended. Bundles 807, 813 and 868 appear to be incomplete. The contents of the bundles are largely draft deeds, mostly leases and affidavits, and correspondence. As solicitors' drafts, the information given in the draft affidavits is on occasions contradictory or misleading. There are a few original deeds, inducing a small number of conveyances. In several bundles, stamps are missing from correspondence.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

ACC/1156-1-1: William Anthony Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-2: John Mitchison in lunacy;
ACC/1156-1-3: The Revd. Canon Richard Stovin Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-4: Herbert Sturges Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-5: Arthur Maw Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-6: W.A. and A.M. Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-7: Harriet Jane Stovin Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-8: William Anthony Mitchison the younger;
ACC/1156-1-9: Mary Magdalen Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-10: Herbert Guy Sturges Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-11: Gilbert Richard Mitchison;
ACC/1156-1-12: Mitchison family (Mr R Stovin Maw deceased);
ACC/1156-1-13: Stovin of Louth;
ACC/1156-1-14: Richard Stovin Maw;
ACC/1156-1-15: Mr and Mrs Maw;
ACC/1156-1-16: Miss Catherine Sturges Maw;
ACC/1156-1-17: Sturges Trust;
ACC/1156-1-18: Henry Trewitt;
ACC/1156-1-19: Henry Mitchison Trewitt;
ACC/1156-1-20: Mary Weatherly.

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 by Edgley and Company, solicitors, in December 1971.

Allied Materials

Related material:

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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