Books on Hertfordshire


Two Ears of Barley

Chronicle of an English Village

by Jack Wilkerson


Chris Studman (chris @t writes: I have just been given by chance a fascinating little book about the development of the village of Barley in north Hertfordshire. The book is 'Two Ears of Barley - Chronicle of an English Village' by Jack Wilkerson (1969).

It has lists of hundreds of names to do with the village stretching back to the 15th century. Prominent amongst the surnames mentioned are Wilkerson, Wilkinson, Cowper, King, Parker, Chapman, Boucher, Savell. If anyone has any connection with the village I'm happy to do look-ups.

In fact it would make an interesting project for some wet February evenings to index the book. Does anyone know if this has already been done?

It might be worth contacting HALS to see if they know. I am sure an index could be useful - and they would love a copy, and I could post a copy on this site to make it more widely available.



  • Onwards from 100 BC

  • Early Farming

  • The Names are the Same

  • Brawlers and Others

  • Begotten in Whoredom

  • Scholarship

  • Maides Marriages

  • Reminiscences

  • The Changing Scene

  • Appendices [Lists of Names] Rectors of Barley from 1123, Barley Men who served 1914-1918, Mincinbury Court (1465-1508), Abbotsbury Court, 16th century, State Papers 1540, 14th Century Lands in Barley, Hearth Tax 1663, Rentals and Quit Rents 1692

The Church in 1835


  • Joe Slater

  • Stone Tools

  • Roman Pots - Redgate

  • Field Strip System

  • The Town House (c 1835)

  • The Wheelwright's Yard

  • Barley Church & Rectory

  • Barley High Street

  • The Village Lock-up

  • Martin Hayes & Dr Salaman

  • Homestall - the Author's House

  • Fred King, the Blacksmith

  • The Puckeridge Hunt

  • Clear Wilkerson (1924)

  • Joseph Beaumont, Rector of Barley

  • Ladies Cricket Team (c 1903)

  • Knights, Lowerfield Farm

  • The Fox & Hounds (1905)

  • Barley Hockey Team

  • Ancient Briton Type

  • Special Constables (1914-18) [First World War, WW1]

For an extract from this book see SALAMAN, Barley, early 20th century


An updated edition "Two More Ears of Barley" was produced in 1982



There is a web page for Barley

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At the time this page was last updated second hand copies of Two Ears of Barley could be ordered online


Page updated February 2008