George William Hamilton

1786 - 1857

Claimant or beneficiary

Biography

Son of John Hamilton of Northpark and Helen nee Bogle. Formed a relationship and had at least three children with Martha Bryce (q.v.), a free woman of colour whom he subsequently married.

  1. 'George William Hamilton matriculated at the University in 1799. He was the third son of John, a merchant in Glasgow. He became a merchant in Jamaica. He died at 27 Clarence Street, Edinburgh, on 18 October 1857, aged 71.' Following his death, his estate was valued at £8706 17s 1d.

  2. George William Hamilton was the object of criticism in 1839 by Benjamin M'Mahon, who described him as: 'formerly a book keeper but who afterwards became the agent of several estates in the above parish [St Thomas-in-the-Vale]...a man of liberal education and gentlemanly demeanour...I have no wish to impeach him personally of cruelty; but I cannot acquit him of conniving at the shocking barbarities committed on the estates..Mr Hamilton's overseers were generally the worst planters I ever knew.'

  3. George William Hamilton was the centre of a dense network of attorneys in Jamaica, linked to a total of 19 the men acting as agents and attorneys in 1832. In 1820 and again in 1838 he was elected member of the Jamaica Assembly as member for St. Thomas-in-the-Vale. He was also active in raising subscriptions for the Presbyterian Institute and towards the construction of a Presbyterian Church in St. Thomas-in-the-Vale.

  4. George William Hamilton inspired the fictional character Aaron Bang in Michael Scott's novel “Tom Cringle's Log” (1829-1833). On first arriving in Jamaica, Michael Scott was mentored by George William between 1806 and 1810, when he left to join Robert Bogle's mercantile house in Kingston, later returning to the UK to become a merchant in Glasgow.

  5. In the 1841 census, a George W. Hamilton aged 50 born Scotland was recorded as living with four servants in Conduit Street, St. George, Hanover Square, London. In the 1851 census, George William Hamilton "late planter in Jamaica" aged 64 is shown as living with his brother Archibald and family at 5 Woodside Crescent, Barony, Lanarkshire.

Sources

John Guthrie Smith and John Oswald Mitchell, The old country houses of the old Glasgow gentry (2nd edn., Glasgow, James MacLehose & Sons, 1878), Northwoodside House.

  1. The University of Glasgow Story http://universitystory.gla.ac.uk/biography/?id=WH25740&type=P [accessed 17/02/2017]; Edinburgh Sheriff Court Inventories SC70/1/102.

  2. Benjamin M'Mahon, Jamaica Plantership (London, 1839) p. 165.

  3. Higman, Plantation Jamaica pp. 73-74; Jamaica Almanac, Civil Lists 1824 and 1839; Jamaica Royal Gazette15 June 1822; 22 Dec 1832, p. 19.

  4. Friends of Glasgow Necropolis website; F. Cundall Historic Jamaica (London 1915) p. 70.

  5. Ancestry.com, 1841 England and Wales Census; 1851 Scotland census [databases online]..

We are grateful for the help of Dr Michael Rhodes with this entry.


Further Information

Absentee?
Transatlantic
Spouse
Martha Bryce ('free Mustee')
Children
John Robert, Helen
Occupation
Merchant

Associated Claims (7)

£815 4S 4D
Awardee (Trustee)
£19 10S 10D
Awardee
£908 2S 0D
Awardee (Trustee)
£57 17S 5D
Awardee
£3,617 3S 5D
Awardee (Trustee)
£58 6S 3D
Awardee
£6,230 5S 8D
Awardee (Attorney)

Associated Estates (68)

The dates listed below have different categories as denoted by the letters in the brackets following each date. Here is a key to explain those letter codes:

  • SD - Association Start Date
  • SY - Association Start Year
  • EA - Earliest Known Association
  • ED - Association End Date
  • EY - Association End Year
  • LA - Latest Known Association
1820 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Agent
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1829 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Trustee
1820 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1809 [EA] - 1821 [LA] → Lessee (Enslaved)
1809 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Lessee (Estate)
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1823 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Agent
1829 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1820 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Agent
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1834 [EA] - → Trustee
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1829 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Agent
1820 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Receiver
1827 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Receiver
1826 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1823 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Attorney
1823 [EA] - → Agent
1826 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1826 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Trustee
1826 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1823 [EA] - → Agent
1823 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1832 [EA] - → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Receiver
1817 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1820 [LA] → Attorney
1823 [EA] - → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1820 [LA] → Attorney
1826 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Executor
1823 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Attorney
1823 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Owner
1823 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Owner
1820 [EA] - 1826 [LA] → Attorney
27/01/1817 [SD] - 1834 [LA] → Trustee
1820 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Agent
1820 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Attorney
1820 [EA] - → Attorney
1820 [EA] - 1827 [LA] → Owner

Relationships (13)

Nephew → Uncle
Nephew → Uncle
Nephew → Uncle
Nephew → Uncle
First Cousins
First Cousins
Son → Mother
Son → Father
Brothers
Brothers
Brothers
Husband → Wife
Notes →
George William Hamilton and Martha Bryce had four children as partners before their marriage in...
Business associates
Notes →
George William Hamilton was mentor to Michael Scott c. 1806-1810, and Scott memorialised him as Aaron Bang in Tom Cringle's Log ...

Addresses (1)

14 Conduit Street, London, Middlesex, London, England
Notes →

Shown in an 1840 codicil of his brother Robert Hamilton's will as having returned to England and staying with Robert Hamilton at Conduit Street. Also of that address in the 1841 census.