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Wednesday, 25 February 2015

John Disney and the Early Years of the Essex Archaeological Society

The Essex Society for Archaeology and History is looking forward to the Morant Lecture to be held at Ingatestone Parish Church on Friday 20 March 2015, 7.30pm.  Our speaker is Professor David Gill who will be talking on the subject, 'The Wonderful World of Disney: Collecting Classical Antiquity'. John Disney was the first President of our Society.
From our archives: S/SEC/7/4

Letter dated 14.1.1954 from R J Appleby to Revd. M Benton

Dear Mr Benton

At what was described as the “first quarterly meeting” on 17 Feb 1853, Charles Gray Round was in the chair.  There were lectures by John Taylor, Jun., and Rev. E E Cutts, and Dr Duncan one of the secretaries, spoke of the plan to found a museum and asked for a gift of loans.

Ess. Standard of 1 Apr 53 reports that Round had consented to give eastern court of castle at nominal rent for a museum in connection with the Archaeological Society.

A meeting at Castle Hedingham was described as the 3rd public gathering of members.  It took place on 29 Jul 53.  Disney presided, and papers were read by Rev. J H Marsden, A Majendie, Harrod, Neville, Almack, Buckler.  Other papers held over to next meeting.  For two days prior to the meeting excavations were carried out to find the foundations and extent of the original building.  30-40 members dined at the Bell afterwards.

On 5 Dec 53 there was a Council meeting with Disney presiding and Round and other friends present.

There was a meeting at Maldon on 29 August, 1854.  J Disney, FRS, President was unable to attend owing to indisposition.  Papers were read by Duncan etc..  Chair was taken by Charles Merivale.  This was described as the 4th annual meeting, but so was that in 1855.

The meeting on 30th Aug 55 was in the Library at Colchester Castle with Disney in the chair.  He said that he had been president for 4 years and owing to advancing years was obliged to retire, but was happy to name his successor.  Mr C G Round proposed thanks to the retiring President and formally proposed Neville to succeed.  It was seconded by Rev Professor Marsden.  Papers read by Jenkins, King etc..  They feasted at the Cups from 4-7pm.

I hope this solves your problem.

Yours sincerely


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