Francis Simpson (Fellow 1781-98)

Francis Simpson, the youngest son of Thomas of Kirby-Ravensworth, Yorks., Esq., signed the Admissions Register of University College in February 1774 aged 17.

His tutors were the Scott brothers and Philip Fisher. He was elected a Freeston major Exhibitioner in February 1774, and then elected a Henry IV Fellow in April 1781. He was resident in College for much of the time of his Fellowship, and held most of the main College offices, including that of Bursar, which post he held in 1787/8 and 1789/90, when these letters were written. In 1797 Simpson was presented to the College living of Tarrant Gunville in Dorset, and he resigned his Fellowship the following year. According to Alumni Oxonienses, he was also sinecure rector of Llengelor, Pembrokeshire in 1803, Rector of Tokenham Week, Wilts, in 1804, prebendary of Bristol in 1809, and vicar of South Petherton in 1813, until his death in 1827.

These papers were found in the 1980s by David Sturdy, then Assistant Archivist, among some general Bursary bills, and reassembled. They were therefore found in the archives during the stocktaking of 1993. They comprise correspondence with Robert Fenwick, Fellow from 1782–90 (for more on Fenwick, see the papers of Robert Clarke which are catalogued as UC:S17).

UC:S18/C1/1    21 Apr 1788
Letter from Robert Fenwick to Simpson (address Leith), thanking Simpson for sending a draft for £40, and asking him to settle another debt in Oxford.

UC:S18/C1/2    19 Dec 1788
Letter from Fenwick to Simpson (address Leith), asking him to send his stipend to one Robert Clarke, an attorney at Stockton-on-Tees, so that his debts can be settled.

UC:S18/C1/3    20 Jun 1789
Fragment of a letter from Fenwick to Robert Clarke telling him to  ask University College for £50 or £60. This was enclosed in C1/3 below.

UC:S18/C1/4    24 Jun 1789
Letter from Robert Clarke to Simpson (address Stockton on Tees) explaining that he is the sequestrator of Fenwick’s Fellowship, and asking him to send the above sum.