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Subject: Benjamin Godfrey of 61 Bishopsgate, London, brother of Crooks Godfrey
Author: jockcrawford3750
Date: 26 August 2018
Classification: Query
Surnames: Godfrey, Huggett, Windus,

Does anyone know who are the parents, or who is the wife, of Benjamin Godfrey of 61 Bishopsgate Street, London, England, who was born about 1741, died in 1812?

His daughter, Mary Godfrey, b. 1768 d. 1819, married Edward William Windus.

Mary and Edward's son, Benjamin Godfrey Windus, continued the family business at 61 Bishopsgate.

(As explained below, there had been a Benjamin Godfrey listed at the 61 Bishopsgate in London Tax and Land records, since 1732.)

England Selected Deaths and Burials (1538-1991) record Benjamin Godfrey's burial date, 29 Mar 1812, at age 71, at St. Botolph's Bishopsgate.

It was at 61 Bishopsgate that Benjamin Godfrey manufactured a medicine widely known in the 18th and 19th centuries as "Benjamin Godfrey's Cordial."

In his will, Benjamin Godfrey passes down the Cordial patent to Edward William Windus, and also mentions siblings Crooks (of Walthamstow, Essex), Thomas, Elizabeth and Sarah. (I have found a Crooks Godfrey from Walthamstow, Essex (b. 1730) in many ancestry trees-- he might be the Crooks Godfrey mentioned in this will.)

Sat, Jul 13, 1776 in the Ipswich Journal, there is a notice from Benjamin Godfrey of 61 Bishopsgate saying that he is the nephew of the late Dr. Benjamin Godfrey and had inherited the recipe for Dr. Benjamin Godfrey's Cordial.


Information I have about this Uncle Benjamin Godfrey:

Benjamin Godfrey of 61 Bishopsgate Street, London is shown on Land and Tax records from 1732 on.

The Derby Mercury in an article from Sun., 14 Sept 1732 states that Benjamin Godfrey "late a baker in Shoreditch, but who now goes by the name "Dr. Benjamin Godfrey," had been found guilty in a suit filed by Thomas How relating to Benjamin Godfrey's Cordial, also known as the General Cordial.

Thomas How, the Derby Mercury article goes on to say, is the brother of the late John How, the son in law of Thomas Godfrey of Hunsdon, Hertfordshire with whom he prepared the Cordial. (Thomas Godfrey of Hunsdon has been credited with originating the Cordial.)

John How, the article says, married Thomas Godfrey of Hunsden's only child. Both John and Thomas, the suit alleges, held the the true recipe. The suit was settled in Thomas How's favor. It was the second suit against Benjamin Godfrey in the last two years for this offense, notes the article.

Benjamin Godfrey, M.D. of 61 Bishopsgate somehow came in possession of rights to the Cordial, though, from advertisements for the Cordial placed by him in the ensuing years.

It seems possible; or better, likely, that Benjamin Godfrey of the Derby Mercury article ("late a baker from Shoreditch") and Benjamin Godfrey of 61 Bishopsgate Street are the same.

Who was this uncle Benjamin Godfrey, whom Benjamin Godfrey adverts to in the Ipswich Journal notice of 1776?

I have found the following couple of article in newspapers.com:

1) In the Newcastle Weekly Courant of Tue, Aug 18, 1744, Benjamin Godfrey advertised for sale two estates, Crookham and Hetherslaw, in Northumberland.

2) In the London newspaper, The Public Advertiser, on Fri, Mar 3, 1758, Benjamin Godfrey gives notice that all should apply to him that might have any claims against the person or estate of Elizabeth Best of the parish of St. Matthew's Bethnal Green. She had recently died after living for many years on charity.

So much for information about the uncle Benjamin Godfrey (of nephew Benjamin Godfrey d. 1812, whose daughter married Edward William Windus).

Also, note, this possibility:

Mary Godfrey Windus may have had a brother, Jonathan Godfrey based on evidence of a similarity between a the Benjamin Godfrey signatures on the respective parish marriage records of Mary and Jonathan. Speculation about a common parent is only a conjecture and has nothing more to support it besides the signature.

For what it's worth, Jonathan's marriage, with Benjamin's signature, was to Hannah Hugget, in 1808.

A death record from Deal, Kent shows a Jonathan Godfrey buried there in 1809.

There is a death record for Hannah Huggett in Greenwich, London, in 1866, at age 77.

If anyone has any information, or even an interesting or good guess about the ancestors of this family, please let me know.

If I am related to them, it is through Jonathan.