John Burgis
(Abt 1710-1768)


Family Links

Rebekah Chapman

John Burgis

  • Born: Abt 1710, Norfolk, Eng
  • Marriage: Rebekah Chapman
  • Died: 1768 about age 58

bullet  General Notes:

Mrs Lowe also supplied a photocopied booklet made up of extracts she found in a reference library about the great fire at Foulsham and how ancestor Rebecka Burgis' butcher's shop was burned down - also mentions John Chapman Burgis and Hannah

published 1842

Foulsham is situated in a fertile and well-wooded valley, through which run several nameless streams, emptying themselves into the river Wensum; the main street of the town, or rather the only one properly deserving the name of a street,
sloping gently from north to south. On the north it is bounded by Hindolverstone and Wood Norton, on the south by Foxley, on the east by Guestwick and Themelthorpe, on the west by Guist, Twyford, and Bintry, and is looked upon by the
inhabitants of these villages as the little metropolis of their neighbourhood.

About noon, or a little after, on Fri 15th June 1770, a fire broke out in an outbuilding belonging to a house on the west side of the market -place, and speedily consumed all the houses on that side of the street, northward of the one whence the fire originated. Among these there happened to be the tenement of a general shop-keeper, on whose premises was a quantity of gunpowder, which, in the alarm and confusion of the moment, had been neglected to be removed. The explosion of this powder having carried some of the burning fragments as far as the church and parsonage, the former edifice was in consequence very materially injured, and the latter, then a thatched house, destroyed. The flames now took a totally different direction, and spreading themselves along the east side of the street, consumed all the buildings there, till they reached as far as the public-house, now known by the name of "the Bull", which was the last that fell prey to their fury.

The great and singular ravages made by this fire, may be accounted for by the houses being then generally roofed with thatch, a brisk wind blowing at the time, and the want of an engine. The nearest one ...

The origin of the fire was very satisfactorily traced to the carelessness of a servant-girl, who had emptied some live embers on a dunghill which was heaped against the wall of a thatched outhouse. No less than fourteen dwelling-houses were consumed, and the total damage was estimated at several thousand pounds.

Though the calamities ...

The outbuilding, in which the fire originated, stood in the yard belonging to the house occupying the site of that in which Mr. Saunders, surgeon, at present resides. This and the adjoining one, where is now the butcher's shop, were the first consumed. The destruction of these was speedily followed by that of all the houses on the west side of the street towards the church, together with the church itself, the parsonage, the house now occupied by the Misses Leeds, and the Bull Inn. The gable-end of the house next to this last was injured, and some of its outbuildings fell a prey to the flames.

The tenements which were totally consumed, were, at the time of the fire, occupied by the following persons; this mark * being attached the names of such of them as were considered proper objects to partake of the subscriptions raised for the sufferers.

Mrs Burgis,* Butcher. John Layton,* Peruke-maker. Arthur Browne,* Brazier. Dorothy Collison,* Widow. Edward Barron,* Whitesmith. William Ivory, Shopkeeper. Michael Hall, Shoemaker. Ann Groom,* Wdow. James Matsell,* Labourer. William
Collison, Collar-maker. Elizabeth Roome, Widow. Thomas Bambridge,* Inn-holder. Mr. Pike, Builder. The Reverend Henry Rice, Rector.

The greatest sufferer among those who were deemed fit objects for relief, was Thomas Bambridge, landlord of the public-house then called the King of Prussia, afterwards the Bull and Dog, now the Bull. By the inventory of his effects, he appears to have united the trade of a wheelwright with that of a publican. His losses amounted to L121. 11s. 9d.

The estimate of the loss of John Layton, peruke-maker, was L108. 12s. 6d. In the list of his stock in trade are some items which give us an idea of the value of perukes and false hair, which, according to the prevailing fashion of the times, were then so generally worn. Two new wigs L2. 2s. Curled white goats' hair, 1 3/4 lbs. L1. 10s. Curled white and grizzled horse-hair L1. 4s. Other stock of hair curled and uncurled L10. 4s. ...

The Widow Collison's loss was L13. 8s. 4 3/4d. - James Matsell's, L8. 19s. including 4s. for buskins and 'dannacks': Mary Strutt's, L7. Mrs. Burgis's, L8. 3s. ...

The following account of the fire was given in the Norfolk Chronicle for the year 1770, June 15th. A terrible fire broke out at Foulsham, which consumed 14 dwelling-houses, also the church, chancel, and steeple, leaving only the bare walls standing. The inhabitants are reduced to the greatest misery, many not having had time to save their money or apparel. The damage is estimated at several thousand pounds. ...

An account of the Town Lands in Foulsham aforesaid.

Six Acres of Land called Harrison's Close in two pieces, late in the occupation of Francis Thomas Quarles and Hannah Burgis and now in the occupation of Benjamin Nobbs and John Chapman Burgis (i.e. son of Hannah Burgis), ...

Amount of Cash received on behalf of the Sufferers at Foulsham by Fire, and of the Church.

Received L. s. d.
8. Mr. Fox and John Burgis collected . . 3 12 0
15. Mr. Fox's and Burgis collection at Lether-
ingsett, &c. . . . . . 5 13 6

Amount of monies paid to the Sufferers at Foulsham by Fire, and for repairs of the Church.

Paid L. s. d.

1770 July 29
8. To Mr. Mayes and John Burgis, expenses 0 6 0

To Sufferers:
James Matsell . . . . . . 2 2 0
Thomas Bambridge . . . . . 30 0 0
John Layton . . . . . 20 0 0
Edward Barron . . . . . . 8 15 0
Rebecca Burgis . . . . . . 20 0 0
Dorothy Collison . . . . . . 5 0 0
Arthur Browne . . . . . . 7 10 0
Mary Strutt . . . . . . 1 15 0
James Buck . . . . . . . 1 5 0
Elizabeth Wilson . . . . . . 1 11 4
Sep 1
25. Mr. Fleming and Mr. Kemp's expenses . 0 8 4
Mrs. Burgis, a sufferer, further on account . 20 0 0
1771 Apr 2
Mrs. Burgis, 3rd payment . . . . 20 0 0
Aug 20
Widow Burgis, in full . . . . 20 0 0


John married Rebekah Chapman. (Rebekah Chapman was born in 1719 and died in 1785.)

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