MICHELL, John I (c.1643-1718), of Kingston Russell, Dorset.
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Family and Education
b. c.1643, 1st s. of John Michell of Kingston Russell by Joan, da. of Sir Cope Doyley of Chiselhampton, Oxon. educ. Magdalen Coll. Oxf. matric. 22 Mar. 1661, aged 18. m. Penelope, da. and coh. of John Bingham of Bingham’s Melcombe, Dorset, 1s. 5da. suc. fa. 1670.1
Commr. for assessment, Dorset 1673-4, 1679-80, 1689-90, sheriff c. June-Nov. 1675, commr. for recusants 1675, j.p. 1675-84, June 1688-9, by 1701-?d., dep. lt. May-Oct. 1688, 1702-?d.2
Michell’s grandfather, a lawyer from the Devon borders, settled at Kingston Russell about the turn of the century. Apart from supplying the Parliamentary garrison at Weymouth on credit (probably involuntary) the family seems to have taken no part in the Civil War. Michell’s father was named to a local committee for coastal watch and ward in 1648 and to a county assessment committee in the following year; but he probably refused to act, since his name does not appear again till the militia committee of March 1660. He is said to have left an estate of £1,500 p.a.3
Michell’s name must have become well known in dissenting circles from 1677 when his sister married Dr John Owen, ‘patriarch of the sectaries’. He was returned for Bridport, six miles from his home, in 1681. He doubtless supported exclusion, but left no record of his activities in the brief proceedings of the Oxford Parliament. He stood again for Bridport in 1685 jointly with Richard Brodrepp, but they were defeated by the Tory candidates and their petition was unsuccessful. As he was appointed to the lieutenancy and the commission of the peace in 1688, presumably he satisfied James II’s regulators over his attitude to the repeal of the Test Act and Penal Laws, and he was approved as court candidate for Bridport, where his former brother-in-law had been appointed recorder under the new charter. But he failed to gain a seat in the Convention. A court Whig in the next two Parliaments, he was buried at Long Bredy on 13 Mar. 1718. The next member of the family to sit was David Robert Michell.4