DRAPER, Cresheld (1646-94), of May Place, Crayford, Kent.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1660-1690, ed. B.D. Henning, 1983
Available from Boydell and Brewer



7 Mar. 1678
Mar. 1679
Oct. 1679

Family and Education

bap. 8 Nov. 1646, o.s. of William Draper of Crayford by 2nd w. Mary, da. and coh. of Richard Cresheld, serjeant-at-law, of Mattishall, Norf. educ. Sevenoaks g.s.; St. John’s, Camb. 1661, m. lic. 24 Mar. 1666, Sarah, da. of Sir Dennis Gauden, surveyor-gen. of victualling, of Clapham, Surr., 1s. 2da. suc. fa. 1651.1

Offices Held

Member, Hon. Artillery Co. 1670; commr. for assessment, Kent 1673-80, 1689-90, j.p. 1675-Feb. 688, lt.-col. of militia by 1679-Feb. 1688, dep. lt. 1683-Feb. 1688.2


Draper’s grandfather, a London Merchant Taylor, bought most of the parish of Crayford in the reign of James I. His father served on three local committees between 1648 and his death, but his maternal grandfather, who had been made a judge by the Long Parliament, laid down office on the execution of the King, and his step-father, John Egioke, was hostile to the Protectorate. Draper was nominated by Robert Austen to oppose the obnoxious nouveau riche, Sir John Banks, at Winchelsea in 1678, and won the seat on petition at the cost, it was later alleged, of £11,000.

Although Draper’s estate was worth not much more than £1,000 p.a., he may have raised most of this large sum himself; at his death mortgages of £13,000 were outstanding. His motive can only be conjectured; but it may have arisen from the breakup of his marriage. His father-in-law was now little more than a dependent of Banks, who may have used his wealth and power to compel Draper to a legal separation with generous alimony of £300 p.a. Shaftesbury marked Draper ‘worthy’, but he was an inactive Member of the Cavalier Parliament, serving on only five committees, of which the most important was on the Lords bill on behalf of foreign Protestant artisans. He was re-elected to the next four Parliaments. Shaftesbury marked him ‘worthy’ again in 1679, and he was listed as voting for exclusion, although he had obtained leave to go into the country on 27 Apr. His last parliamentary committee was for a local estate bill in the second Exclusion Parliament. By 1682, when he went into partnership with Lord Windsor and George Pitt to patent an invention for the construction of wet docks, he was presumably a court supporter, and in the next year he was made a deputy lieutenant. He was re-elected in 1685, and with his son took part in the coronation of James II, but was totally inactive in Parliament. He claimed to be too ill to answer the lord lieutenant’s questions on the repeal of the Test Act and Penal Laws in 1688, and was removed from local office. He was probably in serious financial difficulties, for in the same year he was compelled to sell the Oxfordshire property that had come to him from his mother, and he was not reappointed to the lieutenancy or the commission of the peace. He died on 15 Mar. 1694, the only member of the family to sit in Parliament. Over-generous legacies completed the ruin of his estate, which was sold to Sir Clowdisley Shovell for £20,500.3

Ref Volumes: 1660-1690

Authors: Basil Duke Henning / John. P. Ferris


  • 1. Soc. of Genealogists, Crayford par. reg.; Reg. Roff. 999, PCC 43 Box.
  • 2. Ancient Vellum Bk. ed. Raikes, 98; CSP Dom. Jan.-July 1683, pp. 134, 155; CJ, ix. 605.
  • 3. PCC 83 Sadler; Hasted, Kent, ii. 272; Defoe, Tour, 130-1; PC2/69/16; D.C. Coleman, Sir John Banks, 104, 163; CSP Dom. July-Sept. 1683, p. 218; Suss. Arch. Colls. xv. 193; Wheatley Recs. (Oxf. Rec. Soc. xxxvii), 71, 75; C10/258/26, 28; 236/29.