Moses Cook (b. - 1715)

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Nicknames: "Head Gardener to the Earl of Essex; Nurseryman"
Death: Died
Managed by: June Barnes
Last Updated:

About Moses Cook

Moses Cook


Birth date – Not known

Birth Place –

Date of Death – 1715

Place of Death –

Parents


Father – not known Mother –

Marriage –

Children

Occupation – Head Gardener to the Earl of Essex; Nurseryman

Career

1677 Moses Cook was gardener to Arthur Capel at his forest garden at Cassiobury. [1]

The Brompton Park Nursery was founded in London in 1684 by George London, Moses Cook, and John Field, with John Field joining them in 1687 [2]

Cassiobury Park – Watford, Herfordshire was acquired by Sir Richard Morrison after the dissolution of the monastaries (between 1536 and 1541) and passed down to the Capel family through marriage. In the 1670’s a new house was built and a garden was laid out by Mosses Cook and George London. This garden is shown in an engraving in Britannia Illustrata (1707) [2]

He retired from his partnership in the Brompton Park Nursery 1689

Publications

The Manner of Raising, Ordering, and Improving Forest and Fruit-Trees: Also, How to Plant, Make and Keep Woods, Walks, Avenues, Lawns, Hedges, etc., first published in London, England in 1676. This publication included 'Rules and Tables shewing how the Ingenious Planter may measure Superficial Figures, with Rules how to divide Woods or Land, and how to measure Timber and other Solid Bodies, either by Arithmetick or Geometry, shewing the Use of that most Excellent Line, the Line of Numbers, by several New Examples; with many other Rules, useful for most Men', was later revised in a second edition in 1717.

Notes

“In the text (The Manner of Raising, Ordering, and Improving Forest and Fruit-Trees), Cook referred to himself as 'gardiner to that great Encourager of Planting, the Right Honourable, the Earl of Essex'. The book, which also included 'Rules and Tables shewing how the Ingenious Planter may measure Superficial Figures, with Rules how to divide Woods or Land, and how to measure Timber and other Solid Bodies, either by Arithmetick or Geometry, shewing the Use of that most Excellent Line, the Line of Numbers, by several New Examples; with many other Rules, useful for most Men', was later revised in a second edition in 1717.

Cook recommended the use of limes, elms and beech and the sowing of seeds only from the best specimens. He reported that he successfully raised elms and sallows from seed though at the time it was thought impossible to do so.

His use of cherry trees and formal, mathematical, geometric planting won him the admiration of John Evelyn who commented on his use of both, particularly at Cassiobury in Hertfordshire, England for Arthur Capel, 1st Earl of Essex (baptized 1632, died 1683), in his Diary.

In 1683 the Earl of Essex was involved in the Rye House Plot, a failed assassination attempt by Protestants on King Charles II and his Catholic brother and heir, James, Duke of York as they returned from the Newmarket races in London, England and passed by Rye House in Hertfordshire. Upon his capture, Essex was imprisoned in the Tower of London. It is here that Essex died, reportedly by his own hands, although it is unclear whether or not he was killed by others.” [3]

Ancestry.co.uk – entries which may have a connection

1. UK, Extracted Probate Records 1715 Cook, Moses, gent., Little Hadham, Herts. 36 BR 17 Essex, Hertfordshire: Chelmsford - Wills, 1620-1720

2. England and Wales Christening Records, 1530-1906 Moses Cook born about 1665 Christened 27 Aug 1665 at Little Hadham, Hertfordshire, England Father’s name Moses Cook. (A Female child Elizabeth was baptised on 24 Aug 1667 – same place and father)

IGI Entry – the 27 Aug 1665 baptism – Father Moses Cooke, mother Alice

CJB _ As Moses was working at Little Hadham as gardener it is most likely that these entries refer to his children – so perhaps he married an Alice and two of his children were Moses and Elizabeth

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/A2A/records.aspx?cat=046-degr&cid=-1#-1

Amongst the William Blyth Gerish Collection at the National Archives, Hertfordshire Archives and local Studies, in the collection WATFORD D/EGr/80 undated is listed “Moses Cook, writer of a book The Manner of Raising, Ordering and Improving Forest and Fruit Trees, how to plant, make and keep woods”

Also – in the paper http://www.eastherts.gov.uk/media/pdf/7/f/Item10-_appendixB.pdf

Historic Parks and Gardens Supplementary Planning Document 2007 page 37

“Hadham Hall, Capel Court, Little Hadham

Landscape Character Area - 150 (Hadhams Plateau)

Description - Celtic origins. Norman with William Baud created Lord of the Manor in 1086. Manor passed to Richard II and in 1650’s the Earl of Essex (Capell family) built a new house. Great Barn and Gate House 1520-70, medieval formal gardens with nut walks, created by Lord Hadham (shown in painting by Cornelius Johnson). Gardener, Moses Cook, assistant at Kew worked here. In 1668 the seat moved to Cassiobury and the house declined. The site was bought in 1947 by Hertfordshire County Council and housed a school, its current use.”

Notes, References, Sources/Links, Family Trees etc.

http://www.parksandgardens.ac.uk/component/option,com_parksandgardens/task,person/id,323/Itemid,293/ Sources: Couch, Sarah M., 'The Practice of Avenue Planting in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries', Garden History, Vol. 20, No. 2 (Autumn, 1992), pp. 173-200 <http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0307-1243(199223)20%3A2%3C173%3ATPOAPI%3E2.0.CO%3B2-P> [accessed 2 January 2008]

Hadfield, Miles, Robert Harling and Leonine Highton, British Gardeners: A Biographical Dictionary (London: A. Zwemmer Ltd., 1980), p. 79.

[1] http://www.elmbridgemuseum.org.uk/elmbridgehundred/biographies/biography.asp?id=465

[2] Taylor, Patrick (Editor) – The Oxford Companion to the Garden – 2006 published by OUP Oxford ISBN 978-0198662556

[3] http://www.parksandgardens.ac.uk/component/option,com_parksandgardens/task,person/id,323/Itemid,/

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