TRACY, Walter, of Dorchester.
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Family and Education
Walter was probably related to John Tracy* and like him was a lawyer by profession. Although the family came from Bridport, his early career was based at Dorchester, the first borough he represented in Parliament. He attended the county court held in the town for the shire elections to the Parliaments of 1414 (Nov.), 1421 (May) and 1427, and appeared at the local assizes as an attorney in pleas of novel disseisin. In 1420 along with Walter Bagge, clerk, he purchased a burgage in West Street.1 Tracy was frequently involved in litigation concerning inhabitants of Dorset: in 1429, for instance, he conducted a case in the King’s bench for Thomas Hussey II*, with whom he later made a quitclaim of ‘Fordiscroftin’ in Wilksworth, within the parish of Wimbourne Minster. On his own behalf, albeit with little success, he brought before the court of common pleas suits for debt, in sums ranging from £2 to £9, against a ‘lymebrenner’ of South Maperton, a gentleman from Childhay and a husbandman of Bridport; and in 1430 he granted the prosperous merchant William Mountfort II* of Bridport a release of all actions.2 He perhaps settled in his family’s home town later in his career.3
Ref Volumes: 1386-1421
Author: L. S. Woodger
- 1. C219/11/5, 12/5, 13/5; JUST 1/1531 m. 45; Recs. Dorchester, ed. Mayo, 235.
- 2. C260/139/3; CCR, 1435-41, p. 247; CPR, 1422-9, p. 145; 1429-36, pp. 307, 436; 1436-41, p. 461; CAD, i. C1128.
- 3. If it was the same Walter Tracy who, in 1433, gave evidence as a juror at an inquiry at Sherbourne about the age of the heir of William Payn†, he himself was then aged 50 or more: C139/67/54.