Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Cholmondeley, Mary

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CHOLMONDELEY, MARY, Lady (1563–1626), litigant, was baptised at Nether-Poever, Cheshire, 20 Jan. 1562–3. She was the daughter of Christopher Holford of Holford, Cheshire, by his second wife, Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Randle Manwaring of Over-Poever, and widow of Peter Shakerley of Houlme-juxta-Nether-Poever. Mary had a half-brother by her father’s previous marriage (who married Miss Shakerley on the day of his father’s marriage to Mrs. Shakerley), but he died without issue shortly after his marriage. Mary married Sir Hugh Cholmondeley (1513–1590) [q. v.], of Cholmondeley, Cheshire, and her father’s death followed immediately in 1581. Thereupon she entered upon the lawsuits to succeed to his property by which her name is remembered. Her opponent was her uncle, George Holford of Newborough, her father’s half-brother, who claimed all the family estates as next male in descent. Mary persisted in her right, and the bitter contest went on for forty years. Ultimately friends prevailed upon the litigants, about 1620, to take equal shares. Mary received Holford manorhouse, where she resided in her old age. She made important enlargements to this house, and she died there 15 Aug. 1626, when sixty-three years old. She had five sons [see Cholmondeley, Robert] and three daughters; one of the latter married a Grosvenor of Eaton. James I called Mary ‘the bold lady of Cheshire.’

[Ormerod’s Cheshire, i. 495–6; Burke's Extinct Peerage, 118; E. G. Salisbury’s Border Worthies, 2nd ser. p. 55.]

J. H.

Dictionary of National Biography, Errata (1904), p.65
N.B.— f.e. stands for from end and l.l. for last line

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Cholmondeley, Mary: for Poever read Peover