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Shakespeare purchased New Place, one of the largest houses in Stratford-upon-Avon, from William Underhill in 1597. He also purchased other properties, including one in London near the Blackfriars playhouse--the indoor theater where his acting company performed. The Blackfriars gatehouse, purchased from Henry Walker in 1613, may have been an investment by the business-savvy Shakespeare or a convenient London residence. This section includes documents relating to these two purchases, and to many other purchases as well.

 

All Documents

September 20, 1575
A surviving bundle of deeds, dating back to the mid sixteenth century, documents the ownership of the house in Henley Street adjoining the Shakespeare family property on the south-east.
October 9, 1589
SHAKESPEARE DOCUMENTED IS STILL GROWING! Descriptive content and transcriptions will continue to be added, updated and expanded. Check back for regular updates!
1597
For details about the 1597 foot of fine, see the general essay for Shakespeare's purchase of New Place. The foot has a useful endorsement (the second image) recording the occasions when the final concord was "proclaimed" in open court, as requi
May 4, 1597
For further details about the 1597 exemplification, see the general essay for Shakespeare's purchase of New Place.
May 2-9, 1597
In May 1597, the freehold title to New Place passed from William Underhill to William Shakespeare. This would normally have been recorded in a formal deed of conveyance, signed by both parties.
May 8, 1597
In May 1597, the freehold title to New Place passed from William Underhill to William Shakespeare. This would normally have been recorded in a formal deed of conveyance, signed by the both parties.
January 24, 1598
In this letter, dated January 24, 1598, Abraham Sturley wrote to fellow Stratford townsman Richard Quiney about several town matters, including a rumor regarding Shakespeare’s intent to purchase land.
1598
The borough chamberlain, in his accounts submitted in January 1598, included an entry that at some point in the previous twelve months he paid “Mr Shaxpere” 10 pence for “on lod of ston,” one of a set of five payments made towards the repair of the bridge over t
February 4, 1598
In this 1598 survey of those storing grain in Stratford-upon-Avon, “W[illia]m Shackesp[ear]e” is listed as holding 10 quarters of malt.
March 25, 1601
Thomas Whittington, a shepherd living in Shottery, made his will on March 25, 1601, signing by mark. He was buried on April 19, 1601 and his will was proved ten days later.

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