This section is from the "An Architectural And Historical Account Of Crosby Place, London" book, by Edward L. Blackburn. Also see Amazon: An Architectural And Historical Account Of Crosby Place, London.
It would almost seem, that great anxiety existed among the parties interested in Crosby Place, under Bonvisi's will, on the accession of this Peter Crowle, and something like an impression obtains, that he was of wild and unsettled habits, from the circumstance of the precautions which were apparently taken to secure the after provided for succession. In June, 1553, immediately on his accession, we find him entering into a bond of 1,000, and covenanting with William Bonvisi, of Elthm (Eltham, Kent), father of an Anthony Bonvix,* mentioned in the elder Anthony Bonvisi's will, as next in reversion after Crowle, William Rastell, and Richard Heywood, of London; and John Webb, of Feversham, Kent;* and Germayne Cyoll, second in succession after Crowle; the third, one John Ryther, "Cofferer of the King's Majestie's household," having most likely died in the meantime, that he would not, without their consent, "directly or indirectly bargain, sell, give, or alien, by any ways or means, the said great messuage or tenement, called Crosby's Place, and its appurtenances." Between this period and 1560, various other arrangements were entered into between the parties, and Anthony Bonvix, the younger, would appear to have died; for, in February of the latter year, Crosby Place reverted to Germayne Cioll, and Cycylie his wife,* Peter Crowle having: previously covenanted, for certain considerations, to suffer a recovery of the premises. Cyoll and his wife retained possession, and resided here from the date of this transaction, last day of February, 1660, until 15th May, 1566, when the whole of the property as granted to Antonio Bonvisi, excepting four tenements in the line of the street, and "a foot and a-half of breadth of void ground, continuing in length by the brick wall on the east side of one of the said tenements, late in the tenure of Agnes Bigget, widow," passed by purchase to William Bonde, alderman and citizen of London;* during whose propri-etorgfaip, it is said, Crosby Place underwent considerable repair and addition. He is represented as having increased the house in height, by building a turret on the top thereof. This feature does not, however, now appear; and it is probable that the repairs by him had reference principally to those parts of the edifice which no longer exist.
* The Deed of Grant is dated the 10th of May, 1553, and com-mences by reciting that, by an inquisition taken in 1550, Anthony Bonvisi was found possessed of (inter alia) Crosbye Place, and nine tenements to the same belonging; and goes on stating the entailment to Peter Crowle, the lease from Bonvisi to Rooperand Rastell, and an under lease from them to Benedict Bonvisi and Germayne Cioll, with the fact that all these several parties had "went and departed out of England unto the parts beyond the sea, without license;" as well as the grant by King Edward VI. to Lord Darcye: concluding by witnessing, "that Sir Thomas Darcye, Lord Darcye, for divers good causes and considerations," did grant to Bonvisi, and the other parties, all his right, title and interest in the premises, to hold in as ample manner as he held.
* Probably the brother and nephew of the proprietor of Crosby Place.
* All parties to the deed of entailment by Antonio Bonvix or Bonvisi, the elder.
From the Alderman, who died in 1576,*¡ the property descended to bis second and younger sons, William, Nicholas, and Martyn Bonde; his first son, Daniel, mentioned in his will, probably dying before his father, and subsequent to the date of that instrument, which was made two years before the elder Bonde's death. After his father's decease, William Bonde, the younger, continued to reside with his mother at Crosby Place, in accordance with the wish of his father, expressed in the will; his brother Nicholas occupied a tenement adjoining, which William afterwards purchased of Harrington, with a garden and orchard, etc. before alluded to, and attached to Crosby Place.* The property would, however, appear to have been added to previously to this, as nine tenements are mentioned in the first grant to Crosby, in that from Bonvisi to Rooper and Rastell, and in the re-grant from Lord Darcye, beside the "Chamber in the alley;" while ten messuages appear, in the deed of sale from Cioll to Bonde, exclusive of the "Chamber bounded or edified upon the Larder House," with one garden, three curtilages, and one lane.
* The daughter of Sir John Gresham, Knight, uncle of Sir Thomas Gresham, the founder of the Royal Exchange.
* The purchase-money, paid by Andaman Boode, was 1,500.
*¡ Stowe mentions the existence of a monument to his memory, in the north wall of the choir of St. Helen's Church, and gives the following as the inscription upon it: - "Here lieth the bodie of William Bonde, Alderman, and some time Shrieve of London; a marchant adventurer, and moste famous in his age for his greate adventures, bothe by sea and lande." - Obiit, SO, die Mate, 1576.
From 1576 to 1594, a period of 18 years, the title to Crosby Place remained in the family of Alderman Bonde, of whose sons, William and Martyn, it was, in the 36th of Elizabeth, purchased by Sir John Spencer, Knight, for 2,560,* who in that year kept his mayoralty there.
* Martyn Bonde was, in 1568, a Captain of the Train Bands, in the Camp at Tilbury. He lived to the age of 85 years, dying in May, 1643, and was buried in St. Helen's Church, where a monument to his memory still exists.
Daring the occupancy of it by Sir John, Crosby Place underwent "great reparation;" and it would seem, that about this time its ancient appearance became to be destroyed, first by the erection of the "most large warehouse," which Sir John "builded neare thereunto," and after by other alterations. In 1606, Sir John Spencer purchased of Sir Edward Stanhope, Knt., D.L., one of the Masters in Chancery, the Rectory, Church, and Parsonage of St. Helen's, adding this to his other possessions here. In 1609 he died,* when Crosby Place and appurtenances, with the Rectory of St. Helen's, descended to the Right Hon. Sir William Compton, Knt.
* This shews a considerable increase in the value of the property during the lapse of 34 years, even allowing for the additions made to it.
* Howell's History of London says, he lived in Crosby Place in 1612; but this must be an error. He was buried in St. Helen's Church, where his monument is still to be seen, bearing a corresponding date to that mentioned above, as the period of his death. The following is the inscription: - "Hic situs est Johannes Spencer, Eques Auratus Civis et Senator Londinensis ejusdem Civitatis Prstor, Anno Domini, 1594. Qui ex Alicia Bromfieldia Uxore unicam reliquit Filiam Elizabeth Gulielmo Baroni Compton enuptiam. - Obiit 30, die Martie, Anno Salutis, 1809".
"Socero bene merito Gulielmus Baro Compton gener possuit".
Lord Compton, in right of bis wife Elisabeth, the daughter and heiress of Sir John.