A Wine and Spirit Merchant and Conservative Councillor for the Borough of Ipswich.


Born: 14th March 1808, Carlton, Suffolk.

Baptised: 16th March 1808, at St. Peter’s Church, Carlton, Suffolk.


Member of the Conservative Party.


On the 1st November 1844, Charles was elected, upon a contest, one of the representatives of the Middle Ward, for the term of three years. After the expiration of which he did not seek re-election until November 1852, when Charles unsuccessfully contested for a seat in respect of the Westgate Ward.


Father: JOHN RABET, born 1773, Carlton, Suffolk, baptised 4th April 1773, Bramfield, Suffolk. In April 1789, John was articled to William Schuldham, an attorney, of Bramfield, for five years. In March 1796, at St. Nicholas Church, Harwich, Essex, John Rabett married his first wife Catherine Whatley Baggot born 1770, Essex. Catherine and John had four sons. Catherine died after the birth of their fourth son in 1801, at Bramfield, Suffolk. In April 1806, at Saxmundham, Suffolk John married Sarah Mayhew (nee Boyden). Sarah and John Rabett had two sons.

Mother: SARAH RABETT (nee Boyden 1st marriage Mayhew)), born 1769, Sternfield, Suffolk. Sarah was first married to Thomas Mayhew, a solicitor, of Saxmundham, Suffolk. Sarah and Thomas Mayhew had one son. Thomas Mayhew died after a short illness on the 13th August 1801. Sarah Rabett died Tuesday, 3rd April 1832, at Aldborough, Suffolk.



FREDERIC HENRY RABETT, born 23rd June 1810, Carlton, Suffolk, and baptised on the same day. Frederic was a surgeon. Frederick Rabett died after a short illness, on the 25th July 1849, at Charles and Jane’s home – King Street, Ipswich, Suffolk.



THOMAS MAYHEW, born 1791, Saxmundham, Suffolk. In November 1814, Thomas married Susannah Farr, born November 1788, North Cove Hall, Suffolk – third daughter of John Farr and Hannah Farr (nee Lee), of North Cove Hall, Suffolk. Susannah and Thomas Mayhew had six children. Thomas was a solicitor, first in a partnership with his stepfather John Rabett, until April 1829 when their partnership was dissolved, and Thomas continued in business on his own. Susannah Mayhew died on the 18th July 1853, at her residence – Fairfield House, Saxmundham. Thomas Mayhew died on Christmas Day 1861, at his residence – Fairfield House, Saxmundham.


JOHN RABETT, born 3rd March 1797, Carlton, Suffolk., baptised 4th March 1797, at Carlton.


CHARLES BAGGOT RABETT, born 14th July 1798, Carlton, Suffolk, baptised 15th July 1798, at Carlton. Charles Rabett died 1800, at Carlton.


RALPH NELSON RABETT, born 23rd December 1799, Carlton, Suffolk, baptised 24th December 1799, at Carlton. On the 1st October 1822, at All Saints Church, Great Holland, Essex, Ralph married Jane Ann Cole, born 6th April 1804, Great Holland, Essex, a minor – daughter of James Cole, a farmer, and Maria Cole (nee Bull), of Great Holland. As a minor, James Cole had to give his consent for his daughter to marry Ralph. Jane and Ralph had three children. Ralph Rabett was first a farmer, at Monkwick Farm, Berechurch, Essex. In January 1830, Ralph, as a voluntary alternative to formal bankruptcy executed an Assignment of his estates and effects at a meeting of his creditors for liquidating and distributing his assets. In February 1833, Ralph a coach proprietor and stage coachman, late of Ipswich, and late of the Belle Sauvage Tap, Ludgate Hill, and now of Southend, Essex, was sued and appointed to be heard at the Court House, Portugal Street, Lincoln’s-Inn-Fields, at The Court for Relief of Insolvent Debtors. On the 23rd February 1833, Ralph was imprisoned at Fleet Prison for insolvent debts. Ralph Rabett died on the 9th January 1858, at his residence, Rose Villas, Bromley Common, Kent and was laid to rest on the 16th January 1858, at Holy Trinity Churchyard, Bromley. Jane Rabett died in February 1886, at Cambrian Road, Queen’s Road, Richmond, Surrey, and was laid to rest on the 8th February 1886, at St. Mary Magdalene Churchyard, Richmond.

CHARLES BAGGOT RABETT, born 5th February 1801, Carlton, Suffolk, baptised 6th February 1801, at Carlton. Charles Rabett died 24th April 1802, at Bramfield, Suffolk.



1841   Priory Place, St. Nicholas, Ipswich.


Charles was 30 years old, and an Agent. He was married and head of the household.

Jane, 30.

Visitor – Frances Eleanor Gordon, 20, an Independent, born Bengeo, Hertfordshire.

3 female house servants.


1851   King Street, St. Mary at the Tower, Ipswich.


Charles was 43 years old, a Wine and Spirit Merchant – Master – employing 2 men. He was married and head of the household.

Jane, 45.

Visitor – Elizabeth Woodward, 19, a Farmer’s Daughter, born Wetheringsett, Suffolk.

1 housemaid.

1 groom.


1861   23, Maisemore Square, Park Road, Camberwell, Surrey.


Charles was 53 years old, a Wine Merchant. He was married and head of the household.

Jane, 54.

1 visitor – Clara Jones, 18, born Stoke Newington, Middlesex.

1 female house servant.

1 page boy.


On the 3rd November 1836, at St. Peter’s Church, Chillesford, Suffolk, Charles, of Ipswich married Jane Carpenter Boult, born 25th November 1803, Aldeby, Norfolk – eldest daughter of Benjamin & Sarah Boult, of Beccles, Suffolk.


Father: Benjamin Boult, born 1774, Aldeby, Norfolk. Benjamin was a yeoman. Benjamin died after a lingering illness on Monday, 6th February 1854, at Beccles, Suffolk.


Mother: Sarah Boult (nee Grimmer), born 1780, Herringfleet, Suffolk. Sarah Boult died on Saturday, 1st September 1851, at Beccles, Suffolk.


Charles Edward Rabett died on the 20th October 1862, after a short but severe illness – Dysentery and haemorrhage from the bowels, at his residence 23, Maisemore Square, Park Road, Camberwell, Surrey.


After the death of her husband, Jane Rabett moved to Norwich, Norfolk and lodged with James Page, an Upholster, and Mary Page (nee Johnson) and their family at Princes Street, St. Giles, Norwich.


Jane Carpenter Rabett, an Almswoman, died of Chronic Dysentery on the 20th November 1877, at Tooley’s Court, Foundation Street, Ipswich. Laid to rest on the 24th November 1877, at Ipswich Old Cemetery.



On the 9th February 1843, Mr. Ralph Addison retired from his Wine and Spirit Merchant business at King Street, Cornhill, Ipswich. In an advertisement submitted to the local newspapers, Ralph Addison thanked his friends and the public in general who had supported him and had the pleasure of recommending his successor Mr. Charles Edward Rabett.

In return, Charles Rabett having entered upon the business of Wine and Spirit Merchant, solicits the patronage of his friends, those of Mr. Ralph Addison, and the public in general at King Street.


At the end of 1850, Charles Rabett, became the sole agent for the Table Ale produced at the Westgate Brewery, in Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk, after an increasing consumption of Bitter Beers in Ipswich. The Westgate Brewery’s Table Ale was for family consumption, was equal in quality, and lower in price, than the Pale Ale brewed at Romford, Essex, or elsewhere, and could be purchased from Charles Rabett, of King Street, Ipswich, in eighteen- and nine-gallon casks. This arrangement continued until the end of 1855, when A. K. Ale announced that Charles Rabett was no longer an agent, and in future business orders to be directed to Mr. E. Green, at the Bury St. Edmunds Ale Stores, Quay, Ipswich.


On Monday, 13th April 1846, Charles Rabett was first elected as a Churchwarden at St. Mary Le Tower Church to work alongside fellow Churchwarden Mr. Robert Deck who was re-elected for the ensuing year.

Charles continued serving as Churchwarden at St. Mary Le Tower Church until 1851.


St. Mary At Tower Parish – Ipswich Journal – Saturday, 1st December 1849 – On the afternoon of Wednesday, 28th November 1849, Mr. Charles Rabett and Mr. Charles Silburn as Churchwardens of St. Mary Le Tower Church, very liberally and bountifully regaled the children in the Bluecoat schools in Ipswich, 130 in number, with Port Wine Negus and plum cake, in token of their approval of the children’s behaviour at church. Before the wine and cake went round, the children went through some portion of Wilheim’s exercises in singing, in canon, in which they have for the last few months been so ably instructed by Mr. James Godball, of the great satisfaction of the Directors of the school and the Charles Rabett and Charles Silburn who were present. After singing God save the Queen, in parts, the children gave three hearty cheers for the Queen, three for the Directors, and three for the Churchwardens of St. Mary at Tower – Charles Rabeet and Charles Silburn. They were then addressed by one of the Directors, the Hon. and Reverend F. de Grey, who first, on the children’s behalf returned thanks to Charles Rabett and Charles Silburn for their kindness and liberality – then, taking a glance at the neat and cleanly appearance of the children, and complimenting their teachers on their orderly behaviour and the discipline they appeared to be under, finally exhorted them ever to continue in the love and fear of God, in obedience to their pastors and teachers, and to do their duty in that state of life in which Providence should be pleased to place them, that so, they might live respected in this life, and finally be received into a glorious eternity. The Port Wine Negus and plum cake were then liberally distributed by Charles Rabett and Charles Silburn; and the children were afterwards dismissed to their respective homes with, apparently, happy hearts, and with, certainly, smiling faces.


On Easter Monday, 1855, Charles Rabett was again elected as a Churchwarden at St. Mary Le Tower Church to work alongside Mr. George William Bales.



On Friday, 1st November 1844, the election of Town Councillors for the borough of Ipswich took place. For the Middle Ward at the close of “the poll” result stood as:
Mr. Charles Edward Rabett – Conservative – 181
Mr. Frederick Pawsey – Conservative – 183
Mr. William Henry Alexander, Esq. – Liberal – 122
Mr. John Prentice – Liberal – 119


In the Council Chambers on Monday, 10th November 1845, the annual meeting of the Ipswich Council was held. Mr. James Haill moved for gentlemen qualified to sit on the Watch Committee for the ensuing year. Mr. John Lott Ensor proposed Mr. Charles Edward Rabett and Mr. Alderman William May seconded the motion.

APPOINTMENT OF POLICE SURGEON – On the Wednesday, 29th January 1845, at a Quarterly Meeting of the Ipswich Council held in the Council Chamber, chaired by the Mayor of Ipswich, Mr. Thomas D’Eye Burroughes, the Watch Committee reported that the surgeon who attended the police force should have a salary of £5 allowed, instead of being paid incidental charges. Mr. George Green Sampson seconded the adoption of the report. Charles Edward Rabett moved for the appointment of Mr. John Ranson as surgeon to the police force and Mr. Richard Stinton Cole seconded.

On Monday, 9th November 1846, at the quarterly meeting of the Town Council Charles Rabett was appointed to serve on the Watch Committee for the ensuing year.

During the same meeting held on Monday, 9th November, Charles Rabett was appointed to serve on the Water Committee.

On Wednesday, 1st January 1845 a meeting of the Ipswich Council was in the Council Chamber, at the Town Hall, the Mayor, William Rodwell presided in the chair and before they commenced the business of the meeting wished with the greatest sincerity them all the compliments of the season, and a happy return of the year. During the meeting, 30 Commissioners of the Court of Requests of this Borough, pursuant to the 73rd section of the Municipal Corporation Act needed to be appointed. Mr. Thomas Conder proposed Charles Edward Rabett as a Commissioner and Mr. James Haill seconded.

A special meeting of the Ipswich Council was held on Thursday, 1st January 1846, in the Council Chamber of the Town Hall, the Mayor of Ipswich, George Green Sampson presided as chair, and wished the gentlemen present a Happy New Year and Prosperity. During the meeting, 30 Commissioners of the Court of Requests were appointed. Mr. Thomas Conder moved that Charles Edward Rabett be appointed a Commissioner of the Court of Requests and Mr. Roderick Donald Fraser seconded.

On Friday, 2nd January 1847, a meeting of the Ipswich Corporation was held at the Town Hall, the Mayor of Ipswich, John May presided and before commencing the business of the meeting, he wished them all compliments of the season. The first business on the notice paper was to appoint the requisite number of members of the Council to be Commissioners of the Court of Requests. The Town Clerk, Mr. Stephen Abbot Notcutt, announced that Charles Edward Rabett was one of the gentlemen eligible for election. Mr. Thomas Conder moved the appointment and Alderman Samuel Burrows seconded.

On Monday, 6th April 1846, a special general meeting of the Ipswich Court of Requests was held at the Town Hall, to elect a Judge or Assessor. In the absence of the Mayor, John May, Mr. William Rodwell, Esq., presided as chair. Mr. Burrows moved the appointment of John Eddowes Sparrowe, Esq., an Attorney of Her Majesty’s Court of Queen’s Bench for ten years past, to the office of Judge or Assessor. Mr. Thomas Conder seconded the motion. Mr. Henry Gallant Bristo moved the appointment of Mr. Rolla Rouse, Esq., as a barrister in every way qualified for the office of Judge, or Assessor. Mr. John May seconded the motion. Charles Edward Rabett was one of the 84 gentlemen eligible to vote. His vote went in support of Mr. Rolla Rouse. Mr. William Rodwell announced the results of the poll:
Mr. Sparrowe – 44
Mr. Rouse – 15
Majority for Mr. Sparrow – 29.
Mr. John Sparrowe turned his acknowledgements for the honour he had received. The Court of Requests then adjourned.

Ipswich Journal – Saturday, 26th July 1845 – OPENING OF THE NEW HALL OF COMMERCE – H.M. CUSTOMS and EXCISE OFFICEOn Monday, 21st July 1845, the town of Ipswich woke to the boom of cannon reverberating far and wide, and the peals of St. Mary Tower bells. Soon on various points, flags, bearing popular and patriotic devices, flung their colour to the breeze. At four o’clock the shops were universally closed, and nearly the whole of the population headed towards the scene of the attraction; so that the quays and every approach to the Dock were soon crowded with dens masses of people. Soon afterwards, the splendid brass band of the 7th Hussars, led by the celebrated Herr Tielki, kindly permitted to attend by Lieutenant-Colonel Whyte, assembled on board the River Queen, which was moored off the Custom House. Agreeably to a signal, they struck up the National Anthem, and other popular and patriotic airs, which imparted animation to the scene, and afforded unmingled delight to the spectators.
At half-past 4 o’clock, Charles Rabett was one of the 130 gentlemen invited to join the Mayor of Ipswich, William Rodwell, Esq., and other dignitaries at a most elegant déjeuner à la fourchette provided in the Hall of Commerce, by Messrs. Chaplin and Castle, of the Great White Horse Hotel. The tables were furnished on a scale commensurate with the high character of that establishment, the tables displayed a luscious dessert, comprising pines in the utmost perfection, together with all other fruits peculiar to the season. The wines also were of the finest quality and the whole entertainment afforded the highest satisfaction.
The distinguished gentlemen sat down to the repast, amidst the roaring of cannon from the barges stationed in the dock, the band of the 7th Hussars playing in the intervals the “Roast Beef of Old England,” and other popular airs.

Ipswich Journal – Saturday, 14th November 1846 – PUBLIC DINNER – After the annual meeting of the Council held at the Town Hall on Monday, 9th November 1846, a splendid banquet was given at the Great White Horse Tavern, to Thomas D’Eye Burroughes, Esq., as a mark of the sense entertained by his fellow-townsmen of the zealous and efficient manner in which he discharged the duties of Mayor during his year in office. The newly elected Mayor of Ipswich, George Green Sampson occupied the chair. Charles Rabett was among the 60 gentlemen invited to partake in the entertainment. A company of singers enlivened the evening with excellent glees and songs.



In November 1852, Charles Rabett, as a Conservative entered the contest to be re-elected as a Councillor this time in the Westgate Ward. At the close of the poll on Monday, 1st November he was unsuccessful:
Daniel Read – Liberal – 197
Charles Ashford – Liberal – 196
George Manistre – Conservative – 173
Charles Edward Rabett – 145.

Charles Rabett purchased a Game Certificate each year for £4. 0s. 10d. each.



At the beginning of 1856, the entire excellent modern household furniture, of Charles Edward Rabett, Wine and Spirit Merchant, of King Street, Ipswich, was sold by Auction, by Mr. John Fox. Included in the Sale would be plate, linen, china, glass, the stock-in-trade of wine, etc., trade utensils, a grey horse, pony, full-sized gigs, on patent axles, van, on steel springs and patent axles, a square bucked cart, hand rulley, harness, saddle and bridle and numerous other effects.

The first day’s sale included the furniture from the Drawing Room; comprising, Kidderminster carpet, hearth rug, neat bronzed and steel-top fender, set of fire irons, 8 excellent rosewood Trafalgar chairs, Grecian couch, gondola chair, 4ft. 3in loo table, pair of card tables, and occasional table, en suite elegant rosewood sideboard, with marble top and plate-glass back, handsome rosewood cabinet, pillar tables, music stool, elegant girandole glass, in carved and gilt frame, 2 sets giraffe damask window curtains, bagatelle board, Palmer’s 3-wick table lamp, a choice collection of foreign China, shells and curiosities.

China – Very handsome Dessert Service, with beautifully painted flowers, en variete; handsome China dinner service, white and gold tea and coffee service, breakfast service, and dinner service.

Glass – 2 pairs of handsome cut-quart decanters, claret, 2 water jugs, water carafes, cut tumblers, beakers, champagne, claret, wine, custard, jelly, ale, and other glasses, dishes etc.

Plate – soup ladle, fish knife, 2 gravy spoons, 8 table spoons, 6 dessert spoons, 18 tea spoons, 4 salt spoons, sugar ladle, pair of sauce ladles, butter knife, 2 pairs sugar tongs, wine strainer, etc.

Plated articles – 3 pairs candlesticks, epergne, bread basket, decanter, slides, toast rack, 12 dessert knives and forks, cream ewer, sugar basin, spirit and table castors.

Linen – 15 pairs sheets, 8 pairs pillow cases, 28 chamber towels, 7 Damask table cloths, 5 tray cloths, dinner napkins, etc.

From the two principal bedrooms – Furniture – consisting of 2 four-post bedsteads, with furniture; 2 hair and 1 wool mattresses, 2 excellent feather beds, bolsters and pillows; 3 pairs of blankets, quilts, chairs, washing and dressing tables, glasses, chests of drawers, toilet services, mahogany wardrobe, carpets, etc.

The second day’s sale included furniture from the Dining Room, hall, and remaining bedrooms, kitchen and scullery; comprising Brussels and Kidderminster carpets and hearth rugs, fenders and sets of fire irons, mahogany, hair-seated, and other chairs; neat mahogany couch, set of excellent sliding frame dining tables, opening 9ft. 6in. by 3ft. 9in. Pembroke and dining tables, clocks, excellent mahogany sideboard, lady’s work table, moreen window curtains, hall table, floor cloth, stair carpeting and rods, 2 French bedsteads, mattresses, feather beds and bedding, washing and dressing tables, chairs, and a large assortment of kitchen and culinary requisites.

Also in this sale were trade utensils; 47 dozen glass bottles, 42 3-gallon, 2-gallon, and 1-gallon stone bottles, 109 4-gallon, 3-gallon, 2-gallon, 1-gallon and quart wickered bottles, 4 3-dozen flats, 8 2-dozen flats, 2 2-gallon, 1-gallon, quart and pint copper spirit measures, large copper tunnel, with tap, 11 bottling taps, etc., 2 pulleys, pulley rope, quantity of sealing wax, corks, bungs, shives, etc., 31 casks, various.

Stock – 12 dozen port, 61/2 dozen claret, 3 dozen champagne, 8 dozen ale and stout. Useful grey horse, pony, excellent full-sized gig on patent axles, pony gig, capital van on steel springs and patent axles, square bucked cart, hand rulley, harness, saddle and bridle, and numerous other effects.


SOURCES:   for census returns, births, marriages, deaths, probates, military records and other historical online records.

Members of the Council – in and since 1835 – Mr. B.P. Grimsey – July 1892.



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