The 1798 Posse Comitatus, a military census, resulted from concerns of a French invasion arising from the Revolutionary Wars (1793-1802) and the Napoleonic Wars (1803-1815). This census included able-bodied men between the ages of 15 and 60 who were not Quakers, clergymen or already serving in a military unit. In addition, the number of horses, wagons and carts were surveyed.

The first such survey appears to have been conducted in Dorset in 1797. The publicity that followed caused several other counties to conduct similar surveys. It was at the initiative of the Lord Lieutenant, the Marquess of Buckingham, that the Buckinghamshire survey was conducted. The work was directed by the High Sheriff, John Penn. He issued instructions on 16 February 1798 and returns were due back by 5 March.

Buckinghamshire is the only county for which a complete copy of the Posse Comitatus exists. There are two surviving copies; one is in the British Library and the other is in the Buckinghamshire Record Office.

The first table records the names of Olney men in the Posse Comitatus. The names are listed under their occupations in four columns. The table provides a valuable insight into the various trades practised in Olney in the late eighteenth century.

The second table lists the availability in Olney of horses, wagons and carts, together with the names of the owners.

The data was kindly provided by Sue Blake.


Melvile Horn James Butcher George Robython James Adams
William Butcher Samuel Wray Henry Andrews
GENTLEMEN Robert Collingridge William Banister
Thomas Blunden Thomas Creamer BREECHES-MAKERS William Barker
Richard Gardner Thomas Knight Richard Bodily
Subject to fits
William Barnes – Broken body but able to serve
WilliamWagstaff John Mead – Lame James Chrachow John Birch
Samuel Tompson John Hardwick William Brandon
SURGEONS Thomas White Thomas Maison James Brittain
Thomas Asprey Ebenezer Nyers John Brittain – Lame
Thomas Biggs  PARISH CLERK Thomas Brittain
Thomas Raban  HEELMAKERS William Burrill
TANNERS William Clark John Burt
Robert Morgan  SCHOOLMASTERS John Tapp William Byefield
Thomas Stanley Thomas Haddon Stainer Church – Deaf
John Wagstaff Edward Lambert LACE PATTERN-MAKERS Uriah Clayton
Thomas Wagstaff John Millard Thomas Cook
 TAYLORS John Robinson Ennis Cooper
FARMERS Thomas Atkin Samuel Dayton
John Day – Quaker William Clifton  GLAZIERS Samuel Dayton
John James Thomas Cooper James Andrews William Drage
William James Edward Ingram Michael Hind Thomas Duncan
James Johnson Thomas Jackson William Hull Thomas France
Robert Johnson James Johnson John Garner
John Raban Thomas Leighton  TOLLMAN Samuel Garner
Samuel Raban Richard Line John Bannister Benjamin Green
Timothy Sincham Richard May William Green
James Slatter James Perkins  DRAPERS John Griggs
Thomas Whitmee Thomas Taylor William Andrews John Griggs – Lame
Robert York Thomas Tims James Clark Henry Gutridge
Thomas York James Hare
William York  BUTCHERS  GARDENERS John Harrald – Lame
Thomas Burrill Stephen Freeman Thomas Harrisson
CUTLER James Chater William Kitchener William Harrold
Thomas Tompkins George Griggs Samuel Herbert
John Griggs  FELL-MONGERS Edward Hinde Jnr
MILLERS William Griggs Thomas Forster – Lost the use of one arm John Hinde
Joseph Harrald – Lost the use of one side George Knight John Johnson Thomas Hinde
Moses Hicks John Knight John Johnson William Hoddle – Subject to fits
George Holmshead Lawrence Spinave William Scott John Holloway
John Home William Turvil William Hopper
Jonathan Wood  GROCERS Joseph Horne – Lost one eye & two fingers
Henry Geary  HEMPDRESSERS William Horne
DISSENTING PREACHERS Thomas Green – Quaker Thomas Aspray John Ingram – Lost the use of one arm
Thomas Corby James Herbert Edward Dexter William Jackson
John Sutcliffe Jacob Hutchinson Thomas Soul Freeman Knight
John Tompkins Thomas Tompson William Knight Jnr
WATCHMAKERS John Wallis – Quaker Thomas Tompson Jnr Robert Laybot
John Abram Robert Wallis William Let
 Ebenezer Aspray Daniel Warren  HAIR-DRESSERS William Luitts
John Durnvile Thomas Blundel John Marriott
William Grindon  MALTSTERS Edward Harvey John Marshall
John Killingworth Peter Freeman William Wilson Edward Moore
Thomas Perkin Thomas Gates Richard Morgan
James Tompkins William Sampel  SAWYERS Thomas Old
William Wilmor William Smith Charles Amos William Pearson
John Whitmee John Wasker Thomas Perkins
CARPENTERS Christopher Woodwell Joseph Platt
John Cobb Snr  BLACKSMITHS William Putten
 John Cobb Jnr  FISHMONGER Robert Loo William Rawlins – One eye
Thomas Davin Thomas Freeman Robert Paybody Samuel Rigrave
Flatter Griggs William Paybody James Robinson
John Herbert  BAKERS William Smith Robert Scott
William Rabans Thomas Curtis Thomas Whiting William Sharp
Stephen Stow William Poole Ebenezer Smith
Richard Rivice  BOOKBINDER Ebenezer Smith
CORDWAINERS John Rogers Edward Killingworth Edward Swannel
John Abraham Thomas Rogers Thomas Swannel
 William Abraham John Soul  IRONMONGER John Swift
Bethlem Andrews Joseph Todd Thomas Humphrey William Tame
John Bannister John Thomson
Joseph Brickwood  VICTUALLERS  STAYMAKERS Thomas Watts
Macer Brooks John Andrews William Allen William Wells
John Carter Samuel Aspray Edmund Tapp James West
William Cowley Robert Botteril John Wheeler
William Fisher William Bowden  CURRIER Robert White
Joseph Gillman Timothy Brice William Hesket Edward Wright
Christopher Kitchener William Fennell Richard Wright
John Limbery Richard Hill  BASKETMAKERS William Wrighten
Joseph Lord John Lord – Lame Thomas Collett
Joseph Mead Thomas Tutt Joseph Collyer
Thomas Robinthan John Whitmee Thomas Darling
Thomas Soul Benjamin Holloway
James Waddup Thomas Chater  MATMAKERS
Thomas Walkman William Clark Thomas Bavington
Austin Watson –
Lost two fingers
Robert Mason John Osborn
William Wright George Pitt
LACEMAKERS Thomas Talbott Samuel Soul
Ebenezer Ashburner William Tindon
Francis Bosswell  CHIMNEYSWEEPER
 William Boswell  COLLAR-MAKERS & LACEPILLOW-MAKERS Peter Timbrel
Robert Brittain Thomas Harris Snr
James Bryan Thomas Harris Jnr  APPRENTICES
E Chater Thomas Litchfield John Barnes
John Cleaver Thomas Watts John Bunker
William Coles Joseph Butcher
James Dix  CLOCK LINEMAKER William Chater
Peter Freeman William Bristow Richard Emberton
Richard Freeman Archer Field
Thomas Freeman  LACE BOBBIN-MAKER Benjamin France
Richard Green William Johnson William Griggs
Miles Hardwick –Unable Charles How
Michael Hinde  POULTERER Thomas Moore
Jonas Hotton James Putnam William Pettitt
David King George Rickett
George Kitchener COOPERS Thomas Rivese
Robert Kitchener  John Davison William Scott
William Kitchener –Lame   Thomas Osborn Joseph Slatter
John Marshall James Stratton
David Ping –
One eye
 James Dunton SERVANTS
Jonas Rivett Thomas Dunton  Thomas Dodson
Robert Spencer William Dunton Thomas Jones
William Spencer George Grace Thomas Lett
Matthew Stratton Thomas Puttenham
Thomas Watts TALLOW CHANDLERS Samuel Wadsworth
West Whitmee  Thomas Dexter George Wiggin
William Tutt Samuel Wooding


Horses Wagons Carts
William Andrews
Used as pleasure horses in husbandry
2 1
John Bannister 1 1
Wiliam Bannister 8 2 3
John Bowden 1 1
Henry Brightman 1  – 1
Robert Collingridge 4 1 1
John Day 8 2 3
John Day 8 2 3
Thomas Gardener 1 1
Elizabeth Gee 1 1
George Griggs 7 1 3
Joseph Harrold 9 3 2
John James 8 2 4
John & Willam James 8 2 4*
James Johnson 5 1 2
Timothy Lineham 4 1 2
Thomas Osborn 5 1 3
Thomas Raban 8 2 3
James Slater 6 2 3
Joseph Todd 1  –
John Wagstaffe 1 1
Thomas Whitmee Snr 6 1 2
Thomas Whitmee Jnr 5 1 2
Robert York 7 2 3
Robert York 7 2 3
 122  28  49
*Also other horses used and entered for pleasure that would be able to draw about 10



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