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Evening: Finishing Up in the Fields

The majority of the servants who worked at Agecroft Hall would have been out in the fields. They would have tended to the animals and raised the crops. These servants could have been regular employees of the manor; there also may have been day laborers hired to help during busy times of year. Some of them may never have ventured into the house, because there was no reason for them to go in there. Perhaps the only time they might have interacted with the Dauntesey family would be when Master Dauntesey was out looking over his fields. They may also have gone to the house to collect their pay for their work.

As their workday ended, the field servants would go through a few routines before ending their day. The servants would be sure to put away all of the tools. For the most part, the tools were the property of the manor. If the tools needed to be sharpened or repaired, they might use a grind stone or shaving mare to repair them. Part of their job was to maintain the tools they needed to use.

The servants would also check on the animals. Prior to the 17th century, it was not common for animals to be housed in a barn. The livestock at Agecroft would have roamed the property, and the servants would need to find them, and possibly bring them up to a safer area in the evening if they had gone too far afield. In some medieval manors, the barn was connected to the house, and would have space for the most prized animals. By the 17th century, barns as separate buildings were becoming more commonplace. If Agecroft Manor had barns, the were likely out away from the house and were a space where the servants worked. They may have brought the animals back into the barns after letting them graze for the day.

After the chores were finished, the servants were finally done with their long day. Most of the field servants would live with their families, unless they were very young, like a stable boy, or their family lived too far away. In these cases, they would live in rooms in the barns. Wherever they spent the night, they would plan on being back at work at the manor early the next day.





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