No. 71 The Armed Association of St. Mary, Whitechapel


Plan of the parishes of St Mary, White Chapel and St John, Wapping from J. Strype’s edition of Stow’s Survey of the Cities of London and Westminster and borough of Southwark published in 1754-56. (British Library on line gallery: Board of the British Library, London. Shelfmark: Maps Crace Port. 16.17. Engraving by Rishard Blohm, 1755. (ANNOTATED by Iain Laird 24th October 2022).

PRESENT ARMS 2nd Flugal Motion (see original 1799 description below)
The Parish of St Mary Whitechapel In 1720 see map (click to expand). For more than 600 years a Christian church stood on the site of Adler Street, White Church Lane and Whitechapel High Street in the East end of London. The Whitechapel Church, St Mary Matfelon was the second oldest in Stepney. In 1673, the parish of Stepney was divided into nine parishes, one of them being the newly formed parish of St Mary’s, Whitechapel.  Whitechapel’s heart is Whitechapel High Street, extending further east as Whitechapel Road, named after a small chapel of ease dedicated to St Mary.  Around 1338, it became the parish church of Whitechapel, called, for unknown reasons, St Mary Matfelon. The church was severely damaged during the Blitz and demolished in 1952, and its location and graveyard is now a public garden on the south side of the road.  Whitechapel High Street and Whitechapel Road are now part of the A11 road, anciently the initial part of the Roman road between the City of London and Colchester, exiting the city at Aldgate. In later times, travellers to and from London on this route were accommodated at the many coaching inns which lined Whitechapel High Street.  By the late 16th century, the suburb of Whitechapel and the surrounding area had started becoming “the other half” of London. Located east of Aldgate, outside the City Walls and beyond official controls, it attracted the less fragrant activities of the city, particularly tanneries, breweries, foundries (including the Whitechapel Bell Foundry, which later cast Philadelphia‘s Liberty Bell and London’s Big Ben) and slaughterhouses.  Population shifts from rural areas to London from the 17th century to the mid-19th century resulted in great numbers of more or less destitute people taking up residence amidst the industries and mercantile interests that had attracted them.

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Original Description of the unit from  1799:
This Association was formed the 4th of June 1798, to protect their own Parish, and not march out without their own consent. It consists of two Companies, Infantry, and is not yet joined with any other, but shortly expects to be with Mile End. They are regulated by a military and parochial Committee; and on the 1st of June 1799, received their Colours at the hand of Mrs. Hardy, Lady of Lieutenant Hardy, in the Tower Hamlets Field, Bethnal Green.  Place of Arms, Whitechapel Ground.
First Company. – Captain, Carsten Rohde; First Lieutenant, – Cope; Second Lieutenant, – Roper. Second Company:Captain, Matthew Craven; Third Lieutenant, –­ Hardy; Fourth Lieutenant, vacant.
Helmets; Label, WHITECHAPEL VOLUNTEERS. Breast-plate, oval, and yellow; W. V. and Crown. Buttons, gilt; W. V. and Crown. Whole Gaiters.

Additional information

Weight 0.0121 kg
Dimensions 25.5 × 32.5 cm