JOHNSON, Maurice (by 1480-1551), of Stamford, Lincs.
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Family and Education
Constable, Stamford 1507-8, chamberlain 1508-9, member of the second Twelve 1508-12, of the first Twelve 1512-d., alderman 1517-18, 1527-8, 1538-9.4
Maurice Johnson was three times alderman, that is, mayor, of Stamford, as was his father-in-law and fellow-Member in the Parliament of 1536, Henry Lacy. Although he was so prominent a townsman, little has been discovered about him. Styling himself a dyer in his will, he had been apprenticed to Geoffrey Hampton, one of the principal merchants of the town, and admitted a freeman in 1500-1 on payment of a fine. If he was the Maurice Johnson who had a share in seven nets at Scarborough in 1521, according to a Cinque Ports inquiry, he must have added maritime interests to his mercantile ones. Before the Dissolution he took a lease of shops from Thorney abbey and this he still held at his death. In 1546 he was assessed for subsidy in All Hallows’ parish on goods valued at £42.5
Johnson’s election to three consecutive Parliaments was doubtless a measure of his own standing in the town, although it may also have owed something to his father-in-law as deputy steward of Stamford. Of Johnson’s role in any of these Parliaments there is but one glimpse: both his name, and that of his fellow-Member John Hardgrave, appear on a list drawn up by Cromwell early in 1533 and thought to record the names of Members opposed to the bill in restraint of appeals. It is not unlikely that Johnson shared the misgivings of those dependent on the cloth trade at the commercial repercussions of that measure: whether he also felt religious hostility to it we cannot say, as nothing is known of his outlook in this respect.6
By his will, made on 20 Feb. 1551 and proved on the following 19 Oct., Johnson asked to be buried at All Hallows, Stamford. Besides the Stamford property, he left lands in Shropshire.7
Ref Volumes: 1509-1558
Author: Alan Davidson
- 1. Stamford hall bk. 1461-1657, f. 106.
- 2. Ibid. f. 125.
- 3. Date of birth estimated from admission as freeman. PCC 29 Bucke.
- 4. Stamford hall bk. 1461-1657, ff. 84, 87, 92; R. Butcher, Stamford (1646), 42; F. Peck, Stamford, 27.
- 5. Stamford hall bk. 1461-1657, f. 74v; LP Hen. VIII, iii; E179/137/431.
- 6. LP Hen. VIII, ix. 1077 citing SP1/99, p. 234.
- 7. PCC 29 Bucke.