Laslett family history

William and Sarah Laslett of Dover

William Laslett or Lacelet was baptised on 15 August 1674 at Woodnesborough. He was the seventh son of John Laslett or Lacelet a yeoman of Woodnesborough and Mildred Laslett née Fishenden, his wife (page 13).

By 1704 William was established in his occupation of seaman as, in his brother's 1704 will, a bequest is made to William to be paid "when he comes a shoar" with a further bequest to be paid "when he comes a shoar againe". This would indicate that William was engaged in sea voyages of length rather than just coastal trade.

On 6 July 1709 William as William Lacelet, a Seaman of Dover, married Sara Wilson, a widow, of St Mary's Parish Dover, at Woodnesborough by licence.

At around this time William, probably to be closer to his wife and family, became a fisherman and leased a house in Limekiln Lane, Dover from the Warden of Dover.

William died in 1730 and was buried at Dover St Mary as Wm Lacy. His will was proven on 1 March 1729 old system. In it he left 1/- apiece to his brother Thomas and sisters Mildred and Anna. Which indicates that they, of his brothers and sisters, were the last remaining alive. He also mentions that the property in Limekiln Lane is Harbour Leasehold and that he has Bills, Bonds and Sums of Money at interest. He leaves a life interest in these to his wife Sarah with his son William eventually to inherit. See page 222 for a copy of the will.

Sarah must have been left fairly comfortably off, as she appears to have bought a fishing vessel, of which she kept a painting in her front room, and to have established herself as a moneylender in a small way.

One can see her as being astute but not really as a hard businesswoman as in her will, proven 2 April 1742, she states: ‘there is in my Custody severall things left with me as pawns for money lent to some poor people now it is my Will that all such pawns (if any be found after my death) shall be delivered to the severall and respective Owners thereof by my Executors without taking or receiving any money so lent by me’. Her fishing vessel she left to Sarah Funnell, the daughter of its master, which may have caused some friction between father and daughter. In her will Sarah also mentions her late husband's relatives: Richard Laslett of Ash, Mary Laslett of Sandwich, Widow of John Laslett and Joseph Laslett of Sandwich. See page 223 for a copy of the will. Sarah Laslett alias Lacy, widow of William, was buried at St Marys Dover on 23 March 1740 O.S.

Unfortunately William's and Sarah's line appears to have ended with the early death of their son William.

Family of William and Sarah Laslett

JOHN - baptised 18 March 1710 old system at St. Mary the Virgin, Dover. Not mentioned in parents' wills.
WILLIAM - baptised 16 December 1716 at St. Mary the Virgin, Dover. Mariner. Died 1740. In his will, dated 19 April 1740 (Probate 24 November 1740), he leaves all his estate to "my loving ffriend Hannah Atwells of Dover aforesaid Spinster". (Interestingly his name is spelt both Laslett and Lasley in the Will.) We can only surmise that William died unmarried. See copy of will on page .238.