STRODE, William I (1614-76), of Newnham, Plympton St. Mary, Devon.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1660-1690, ed. B.D. Henning, 1983
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1661 - 13 Jan. 1676

Family and Education

bap. 18 Dec. 1614, 1st s. of Sir Richard Strode of Newnham and Chalmington, Dorset by 2nd w. Elizabeth, da. of Thomas Erle of Charborough, Dorset. educ. M. Temple 1632. m. (1) 25 Nov. 1636 (with £1,500), Anne da. Anne, da. and coh. of Sir William Button of Parkgate Tawstock, Devon, 1s. 3da.; (2) 19 Oct. 1647, Blanche (d.1665), da. of William Kekewich of Catchfrench, Cornw., 7s. (2 d.v.p.) 1da. Kntd. 5 Dec. 1660; suc. fa. 1669.1

Offices Held

J.p. Devon July 1660-d., commr. for assessment Aug. 1660-75, corporations 1662-3; recorder, Plympton Erle ?1663-d.; commr. for recusants, Devon 1675.2


The Devonshire Strodes do not seem to have come of the same stock as those of Dorset and Somerset. They took their name from a manor in Ermington which they held in the reign of Henry III. Early in the 15th century they acquired Newnham by marriage, and thenceforward regularly represented the nearby borough of Plympton. Strode’s uncle, as one of the Five Members whom Charles I tried to arrest in 1642, is the best-known of the family. His father raised a regiment of dragoons for Parliament, informed against delinquents, and served as an assessment commissioner until imprisoned for debt under the Commonwealth. But Strode himself took no part in the Civil War and went abroad in 1644. Ten years later, his father, with whom he was on the worst of terms, had to make over Newnham to him, but he held no office till after the Restoration.3

Strode was returned to the Convention for Plympton Erle. He was an inactive Member, being appointed to only five committees, none of which was of much political importance. But it is clear that he broke with family tradition by supporting the Court. On 6 Nov. 1660 he went so far as to propose a message of congratulation to the queen mother on her return from France. On 30 Nov. he spoke in favour of recommitting the bill to prevent the voluntary separation of married persons, and was added to the committee. He was knighted before the dissolution, and re-elected to the Cavalier Parliament. Again inactive, he was named to 51 committees, including that for the security bill in 1661. He was probably appointed recorder of Plympton by the commissioners of corporations, signing the indenture for the by-election of 1666 in that capacity. He was given leave to go into the country for his health on 4 Mar. 1668, and does not appear on either list of the court party in 1669-71. His name was struck off the list of defaulters on 3 Feb. 1671, and he was appointed to the committee for the bill to regulate parliamentary elections. Despite ill-health and the difference in their politics, Strode inherited a full share of his father’s cantankerous disposition, and devoted much of his energy to his grievance over the compulsory acquisition of Lambhay, a small property of his, for the defences of Plymouth. His petition was referred to a committee on 24 Feb. 1673, but never reported. When Sir Thomas Osborne took over the Treasury he asked Sir Charles Harbord to report on suitable compensation. But Strode was still unsatisfied when he made his only recorded speech in this Parliament on 17 May 1675. He received the government whip in the autumn, and was entered on the working lists among the Members to be managed by the lord treasurer. But the opportunity was missed, he was absent from the House throughout the session, and died on 13 Jan. 1676. He was buried at Plympton St. Mary. Although he had endeavoured to improve his estate by mining enterprises, he left great debts.4

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Authors: M. W. Helms / J. S. Crossette


  • 1. Vis. England and Wales Notes ed. Crisp, xii. 125-8; Soc. of Genealogists, Cattistock par. reg.; Hutchins, Dorset, iii. 502; Devon and Cornw. N. and Q. ii. 179; Portland mss, BL Loan 29/87, Lady Button’s memo.
  • 2. Plymouth corp. black bk. f. 17.
  • 3. Lysons, Devon, 176, 413-14; Cal. Comm. Adv. Money, 38; HMC Portland, iii. 51, 62; BL Loan 29, 187, Wm. Strode to Lady Button, 4 June 1644, Sir Rd. Strode to Lady Button, 4 Mar. 1650; Plymouth City Lib. MTO3/28.
  • 4. Old Parl. Hist. xxiii. 2, 33; HMC Lindsey, 5; Grey, iii. 163; BL Loan 29/83, Sir Edward Harley to Mary Strode, 5 Feb. 1676, 29/87, directions for Kettleby; Devon and Cornw. N. and Q. ii. 179.