Wren 300, a city full of people

Robert Baden of St Vedast

Robert Baden

(d. 1668)



St Vedast

Researched by Nicky Scowen

Robert Baden was born in Amesbury, Wiltshire to Robert senior and Jane. By 1672 the family had moved to London, with their second son William baptised in St Michael-le-Quern that year.

Robert the elder was a Member of the Mercers ’Company and a dealer in textiles. He served as a militiaman from 1678 and died in 1695. His wife Jane died in 1689 and both are buried in St Michael-Le-Quern. Robert left his estate to his sons Robert and William and some money to his mother-in- law Jane Pearse.

In 1685 Robert the younger was apprenticed to his father in the Mercers’ Company for eight years. In 1692 while he was working in his father’s shop in Cheapside he chased and caught a shoplifter. The theft of eight yards of black silk fringe, worth less than one shilling gained the guilty party, Elinor Willyer, a public whipping from Newgate to Aldgate.

Robert became a Freeman Laceman and dealer in his own right in 1693. He married Anne Wenman at St Paul Covent Garden in 1695.

Robert and Anne had eight children, all baptised in St Michael-le-Quern, but only three survived past their first year. The family lived at the sign of the White Hart in Blowbladder Street off St Martins-le-Grand, just to the north of St Paul’s. The area was known for its fabric dealers, milliners, sempstresses, and sellers of a copper lace called St. Martin’s lace.


Local churches were the focal point of sixteenth-century City life. Weekly worship and all the milestones of parishioners’ lives took place here: christenings, marriages and funerals. Many churches were lost in the Great Fire.

Read the stories of four that either survived or succumbed to the flames, and how they reemerged from the ruins.

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