Among its rich store of documents, the Devon Heritage Centre (DHC) holds a listing, dating from a few years before the oaths of allegiance to George I were sworn in 1723, and recording the names of people assessed to pay for the upkeep of the militia. These militia assessments of 1715 survive for 50 parishes in South Devon,1 a more limited coverage of the county than the oath rolls, but providing a different type of information. This essay seeks to compare the contents of the two lists for Stokenham, a moderately large parish lying a few miles to the east of Kingsbridge, and to find out to what extent the people whose names they record are still 'visible' nearly three centuries later. As a result, it is hoped that local and family historians will be able to judge the value of the documents. The locations of Stokenham and its two chapelries (Sherford and Chivelstone) are shown in the extract from Benjamin Donn's map of 1765 (figure 1).
Figure 1: Extract from Benjamin Donn's map of Devon, 1765, showing the position of Stokenham and other places mentioned in the text.