The indenture of Henry Brackett, 6th July 1844
This Indenture was recently donated to Sudbury Ephemera Archive by Sudbury Museum Trust. Not only is it a fascinating document together with the wax seals and ancient language, but it is an interesting piece of social history. It lays down how the apprentice is expected to behave during his term of years and the amount he will be paid.
It would be interesting to ask today’s young generation how they would react to such demands on them for such a length of time.
Transcript of side 1
Dated 6 July 1844
Mr Henry James Deeks
Indenture of Apprentices
Received the day and year within mentioned of the within named Samuel Brackett the sum of Five pounds within the expressed to be paid by him to me
Henry James Deeks
Geo. Wll Andrews
Transcript of side 2
This Indenture Witnessed that Henry Brackett of his own free Will and by and with the Consent and approbation of Samuel Brackett his father of Ballingdon in the County of Essex Carpenter doth put himself Apprentice to Henry James Deeks of Sudbury in the County of Suffolk Cordwainer to learn his Art and with hereinafter the Manner of an Apprentice to serve from the first day of January now last past unto the full End and Term of seven Years from thence next following to be fully complete and ended During which Term the said Apprentice his Master faithfully shall serve his secrets keep his lawful commands everywhere gladly do He shall do no damage to his said Master nor see to be done of others put to his Power shall tell or forthwith give warning to his said Master of same He shall not waste the Goods of his said Master nor lend them unlawfully to any He shall nor commit fornication not contract Matrimony within the said Term shall not play cards nor Dice Tables or any other unlawful Games whereby his said Master may have any loss with his own goods or others during the said Term without Licence of his said Master He shall neither buy nor sell He shall not haunt Taverns or Playhouses nor absent himself from the said Master’s service day or night unlawfully But in all things as a faithful Apprentice He shall behave himself towards his said Master and all his during said Term And the said Henry James Deeks on consideration of the premium or sum of Five Pounds of lawful British money to him in hand paid by the said Samuel Brackett at or upon the Execution of these Presents his said Apprentice in the Trades of a Cordwainer and Shoemaker which he useth by the best means that he can shall teach and Instruct or cause to be taught and instructed the said Samuel Brackett finding unto the said Apprentice sufficient Meat Drink Lodging and all other Necessaries during the said Term the same being so found and provided by the said father of the said Apprentice but the said Henry James Deeks hereby covenanting and agreeing with he the said Samuel Brackett to pay and allow to the said Apprentice for his services during the last three years of the said Term as follows that is to say the shilling per week for and during the fifth year two shillings per week for and during the sixth year, and three shillings per week for and during the last year And for the true performance of all and every the said Covenant and Agreements either of the said Parties bindeth himself unto the other by these Presents In Witness whereby the Parties above named to these Indentures interchangeably have put their hands and Seals the sixth day of February and in the eighth Year of the Reign of our Sovereign Lady Victoria by the Grace of God of the united Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland Queen Defender of the Faith and in the Year of our Lord One Thousand Eight Hundred and forty four
N.B. The Indenture Covenant Article or Contract must bear date the day it is executed and what Money or other thing is given or contracted for with the Clerk or Apprentice must be inserted in Words at Length otherwise the Indenture will be void the Master or Mistress forfeit Fifty Pounds and another Penalty and the Apprentice be disabled to follow his trade or be made Free
Signed Sealed and Delivered being First duly [undecipherable word] and the words between the seventeenth and eighteenth lines having been first inserted.
Signature of Andrews for Geo. Wil Andrews Soli Sudbury
Henry James Deeks
Previous Featured Acquisitions
Nuisance Books or Inspectors’ Journals (Featured Acquisition April 2016)
For more details of all the items we hold, see our Ephemera Catalogue.