JOHNSON, Francis (d.1605), of Aldeburgh, Suff.
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Family and Education
m. (1) Alice, da. of John Foxe of Aldeburgh, 1s.; (2) Elizabeth (d.c.1609), wid. of Thomas Gray (d.1599) of Wortham, 2da.
The Johnsons were a prominent Aldeburgh merchant family in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Francis’s elder brother Thomas, who died in 1584, was assessed at £5 in goods for the 1568 subsidy. Thomas’s eldest son, another Thomas, was a shipowner in the reign of Charles I.
In September 1596, Francis Johnson was granted a tonnage to build two ships—the Grace, of 200 tons, and the Angel of 180 tons. The money was to be paid out of customs due from merchandise imported in the two ships. It is unlikely that Johnson made any contribution to the business of the House, though the burgesses for the Suffolk boroughs were appointed to a committee for draining the fens 3 Dec. 1597. The ‘Mr. Johnson’ who served on committees 27 Jan. and 7 Feb. 1598 was probably Robert. Francis Johnson’s will, dated 23 June 1605, and proved 13 Sept. following, made provision for his widow, his two daughters (each of whom received 200 marks), and for three of the widow’s children by her former husband. The executor and residuary legatee, his son Henry, was asked to see that £5 was distributed among the poor of Aldeburgh.
E. Anglian N. and Q. n.s. iii. 167, 198; Suff. Green Bks. xii. 209; HMC Var. iv. 289, 294, 296-8, 305, 308; PRO Index 6800, f. 610; D’Ewes, 567, 589, 594; PCC 62 Hayes.