In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Little Maplestead like this:
MAPLESTEAD (LITTLE), a parish in Halstead district, Essex; 2¼ miles N of Halstead r. station. Posttown, Halstead. Acres, 1,062 Real property, £1,703. Pop., 325. Houses, 73. The property is divided among a few. The manor, with 383 acres, belongs to Sabbatarian Trustees. A.preceptory of the Knight's Hospitallers was founded here, in 1186, by Juliana de Burgo; and went to successively the Wisemans, the Guyons, and others. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Rochester. Value, £72. ...
Patrons, the Sab. Trustees. The church belonged to the preceptory; had the privilege of sanctuary; was restored or rebuilt in 1857; retains its ancient form and features; is in fine decorated English style; has a circular nave, 30 feet in diameter, surrounded iby a peristyle of six clustered columns, and an eastern apse or semi-circular chancel; measures 62 feet in length; and contains a restored Primitive Norman font. There is an Independent chapel.
A Vision of Britain through Time includes a large library of local statistics for administrative units. For the best overall sense of how the area containing Little Maplestead has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Braintree. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Little Maplestead and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Little Maplestead, in Braintree and Essex | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 21st April 2015
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