Grocers' Company apprenticeships

The Grocers' Company is one of the "Great Twelve" Companies. It originated as the Pepperers', listed as early as 1180. The fraternity of St Anthony was founded in 1345, and the company emerged, its first surviving charter being of 1428. It is 2nd in order of precedence. Almost all of its records are deposited at the Guildhall Library.

The early accounts from 1451 give the names of apprentices and their masters. It is possible therefore to list these, however no other details are given, and there are some gaps in the series (of which the longest is from 1505 to 1511). Furthermore, in some years only the name of the apprentice is given, not that of the master. Entries of some apprenticeships only survive from the note made when the apprentice was made free. These early records have not been included, being more usefully included in any subsequent publication of Grocers' freedom records.

Detailed records of apprenticeship for this Company, giving the name, parish and occupation of the apprentice's father start in 1629, with Guildhall Library Ms 11,593/1, which continues to 1665. Guildhall Library Ms 11,571/13 (being Wardens' Accounts 1642-52) has been used to fill a small gap Jul-Nov 1651, though details of parentage are not, of course, given in this source. The series of apprenticeship registers continues with Guildhall Library Ms 11,593/2 (1660-1712 – there is an overlap at the beginning which has been collated here) and Guildhall Library Ms 11,593/3 (1712-1786). Grocers' apprentices from 1783 to 1799 were taken from Guildhall Library Ms 11,598/5 which lists new freemen as well. For 1799-1800 Guildhall Library Ms 11,598/6 was used, which continues to 1815.

The early entries occasionally make note of a bond given by a sponsor (usually a relative of the child) for the apprentice. Details of these have been noted in the text.

There are 10,964 apprenticeships recorded in this index.