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Sir Robert Clayton papers


Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

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Sir Robert Clayton papers, 1579-1744 | Rare Book & Manuscript Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


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Collection Overview

Title: Sir Robert Clayton papers, 1579-1744Add to your cart.

ID: 01/01/MSS00010

Primary Creator: Clayton, Robert, Sir (1629-1707)

Extent: 15.0 Cubic Feet. More info below.

Arrangement: Arranged alphabetically by correspondent.

Date Acquired: 00/00/1953

Subjects: Bankers --England --London --Archival resources, Clayton, Robert, Sir, 1629-1707 --Archival resources, Clayton, Robert, Sir, 1629-1707 --Correspondence, Herbert, Edward, Sir, 1648?-1698 --Archival resources, Norfolk, Henry Howard, Duke of, 1655-1701 --Archival resources, Politicians --England --London --Archival resources, Turner, Francis, 1638?-1700 --Archival resources, Wren, Matthew, 1585-1667 --Archival resources

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

Some 3000 letters and documents, chiefly addressed to Clayton, the English merchant, politician, and Lord Mayor of London in 1679-80. In addition to correspondence, the collection contains receipts, bills, bonds, promissory notes, petitions, wills, affidavits, indentures, and related papers. Includes two rent receipts of Matthew Wren, Bishop of Ely; one letter of Francis Turner, Bishop of Ely; a statement by Sir Edward Herbert, Earl of Portland, a chief justice, concerning charges brought against him; and five items relating to Henry Howard, 7th Duke of Norfolk. An index of personal names accompanies the papers. In Frank T. Melton's Sir Robert Clayton and the Origins of English Deposit Banking, 1658-1685 (Cambridge University Press, 1986) Appendix 4, is a list of Clayton manuscripts in public collections.

Biographical Note

Born at Bulwick, Northamptonshire, England, 29 September 1629, Sir Robert Clayton was a banker, alderman, member of Parliament, knight, and Lord Mayor of London.

He became an apprentice to his uncle, a London scrivener, where he met a fellow apprentice, Alderman John Morris. They became successful businessmen and established the bank, Clayton & Morris Co.

Clayton entered politics and representing several wards as a Whig. He was knighted in 1671. Clayton made a considerable fortune, and on John Morris's death in 1682, inherited considerable wealth. In 1697 he lent the king £30,000 to pay for the army.

He was president of the St Thomas' Hospital in London next to the River Thames opposite the Houses of Parliament. He employed Thomas Cartwright to rebuild the hospital and St Thomas Church nearby.

Robert Clayton was a member of the Scriveners and Drapers Company, an Alderman of Cheap Ward in the City of London (1670-1683), a Sheriff in 1671, Lord Mayor of London (1679-1680), a Member of Parliament for the City of London (1678-1681), Colonel of the Orange Regiment of militia (various times, 1680-1702), President of the Honourable Artillery Company (1690-1703), Commissioner of the Customs (1689-1697), an Assistant to the Royal African Company (1672-1681) and a governor of the Bank of England (1702-1707).

Sir Robert outlived his children and his heir was his nephew, Sir William Clayton.  He died 16 July 1707.

Subject/Index Terms

Bankers --England --London --Archival resources
Clayton, Robert, Sir, 1629-1707 --Archival resources
Clayton, Robert, Sir, 1629-1707 --Correspondence
Herbert, Edward, Sir, 1648?-1698 --Archival resources
Norfolk, Henry Howard, Duke of, 1655-1701 --Archival resources
Politicians --England --London --Archival resources
Turner, Francis, 1638?-1700 --Archival resources
Wren, Matthew, 1585-1667 --Archival resources

Administrative Information

Repository: Rare Book & Manuscript Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Alternate Extent Statement: 20 boxes, circa 3,000 items

Access Restrictions: Open to researchers.

Use Restrictions:

The RBML reproductions policies can be found here:


The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted materials.

Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study scholarship or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement.

This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgement, fulfillment of the order would damage materials or involve violation of copyright law.

Acquisition Source: Michelmore & Co.

Acquisition Method: Purchased, 1953.

Original/Copies Note: A microfilm copy of the collection covering correspondents G through the end is available for consultation in the Rare Book and Special Collections Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Related Publications:

Legacy finding aid can be found at:


Processing Information: https://wiki.cites.uiuc.edu/wiki/display/librare/Home

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