Historical Notices & Records of the Village & Parish of Fincham in the County of Norfolk” by William Blyth (Rector of Fincham), published by Thew & Son, Kings Lynn, in 1863.
This book is very rare. There are a few public libraries in Britain who have a copy, including Leicester University, but none that will lend it out. You may be able to purchase copy from an antiquarian bookseller.
You will enjoy reading the book very much. It is packed with information about the village and its history, and about the Fincham family, with extensive genealogies. The book is interesting for the light it sheds on the interests and attitudes of a Victorian clergyman, as well as for the prior history it contains.
See also the page about Blyth’s Box, recently discovered in the church, containing his original proof of the book, and other interesting historical material.
The book has been converted to PDF format so you can view and download it here. Much of this site has been informed and illustrated by the book, and a list of contents is given below.
Fins-ham in Saxon times – Marches – Shire – Hundred – Parish – Ham – Finn – The fight at Finnes-ham – Phincham in Domesday Book – Clackclose – Ramsey Abbey – Norman Lords
Fyncham in the 12th and 13th Centuries – Its thirteen Manors – Early Terriers – Surveys – Free Chapel of All Saints – Guild of St. John – Wynhold – General Inclosure – Tithe Commutation Survey
Parochial Inclosures – Kett’s Rebellion – Gurney’s Poem – Drainage – Walter Blyth, and his “English Improver”
Statistics of Fincham – Subsidies of Henry VIII – Devotion Money – Church Briefs – Hearth Tax – Census – Parish Accounts – Poor’s Rates
The Church of St. Michael – The Benefice – The Parish Church – Its wilful destruction – Rectors
The Church of St. Martin – The Benefice – The Parish Church – The Arms of Fincham – Bishop Bateman – The Restoration – The two Chantries – Monuments and Epitaphs – The Vestry – The Church Plate – The Fonts of Burnham Deepdale and Fincham – The Churchyard – Incumbents
Rural Deanery – Appointment of Rural Dean – His Seal of Office – His Revenue – Deans of Fincham – Revival of the Office by Bishop Stanley
The Rectory – Glebe Lands and House – The Rev. D. Baker – The Rev. R. Forby – Vocabulary of East Anglia – Bishop Bathurst – Church Missionary Society
The Parish Clerk – Endowment of the Office – Sexton – Dog-whipper – Notes and Queries
Parish Registers – Registers of the Deanery – Extracts from Fincham Registers – Civil Marriages during the Commonwealth – Small-pox – Vaccination – Village Local Ancestry – Terriers
Parochial Charities – Church Lands – Poor’s Farm – Educational – National School
Antiquities – Roman Vase – Ancient Gold Coin – Fincham Swan Marks – “Swan with two necks”
Fincham Hall – Its Chapel – The Aylmers – Aylmerton – The Aylmer Arms
The Finchams pf Fincham – Nigellus – Adam de Fyncham – “de Fynchams” not of the family – The Finchams of West Wynch – Of Rougham – Seals of the family – The Norman “de” dropped – The two brothers John – Inquisitions Post Mortem – The “Common boxe” – Finchams at Stow
The Finchams of Outwell – The Chapel of St. Nicholas in Outwell Church – Gilbert Haultoft – Richard Fincham of Elme – John Fincham in the Bastille at Paris – Francis Coffin the Administrator
The Finchams of Suffolk and East Norfolk – The Society of Friends – The Finchams of Diss – The seven Benjamins – Longevity of the Francis Finchams – The Naval Architect
Letters of John Fincham, Esquire, of Outwell, from the Bastille prison in Paris – The Bishop of London (Laud) to Sir John Coke, Secretary of State – John Fincham to Dr. Dee, Chaplain, &c – The same to the same – The same to his wife and children – The same to the Secretary of State
Wills and Testaments of the Finchams – Will of Adam de Fyncham – Morturies – Gifts to the Monasteries – Ancient Inventory – Difference between Will and Testament – Simon de Fyncham’s bequest for the Church Tower – John Fyncham’s endowment of a Chantry, out of Deepdale Manor – Wills of Edward and John Fincham, subsequent to the Reformation
Observations and Reflections – Resident Gentry – Religious and Charitable Institutions – Education – Diminution of Crime, where – Increase, where – The Church Established – Appropriations – Revision of the Liturgy – The Laity – The Clergy – The Fabric – Its Restoration – John Wesley – The Church-yard – Dissenter’s Demands – Conclusion
The book is illustrated with the following engravings and illustrations St.
- Martin’s Church
- the Rectory House
- roman vase found at Fincham
- Fincham Hall
- Fincham swan marks
- Fincham seals (see page about the Fincham Arms)
In addition there are numerous Pedigrees of the Fincham family, and a facsimile of an Ancient Inventory (of the property of John de Fyncham, son of Adam de Fyncham: dated 1399).
The illustrations and pedigrees can be viewed below.