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The Heveningham Hall estate was acquired by Sir Joshua Vanneck in 1752, and his family remained in possession of the Hall until 1970, when the estate was purchased by the Government. It is now once more in private hands.

Most of the records within the collection concern the administration of the Heveningham estate. There are lengthy series of medieval court records for the manors of Aldham, Cratfield, Huntingfield, Laxfield, and Leiston, as well as around 150 title deeds dating from the late 12th century to the mid-16th century (boxes 28-32).  Further records relating to some of these manors are held at Suffolk Record Office.  A subsidiary and self-contained section consists of papers of the Arcedeckne family, formerly of Glevering Hall, Suffolk, and of their estates in both Suffolk and Jamaica, c.1744-1848. Charles Andrew Vanneck, third Baron Huntingfield, married Louisa, only daughter of Andrew Arcedeckne, in 1839.

The collection is notable for its records relating to the family's Jamaican plantation covering the period 1744 to 1848.  There are some direct references to enslaved people and enslavement and it is likely that the subject will also be covered in general correspondence, reports and accounts.  Some of the letters in the collection that refer to enslavement have been published on Southampton University's Slavery and Revolution website.

A catalogue is available in the Manuscripts Reading Room. The papers may be consulted without restriction by holders of full reader's tickets.

These papers of the Vanneck family were formerly held at Heveningham Hall, near Halesworth, Suffolk. They were deposited in the University Library by the trustees of the Heveningham Hall Settlement in 1973, and purchased by the Library in 2004.

Contact: Kevin Roberts (01223 333141;