Charles Waterton

1782 - 1865


Biography

English naturalist who went to British Guiana to manage La Jalousie and Fellowship, the estates of his uncle Christopher Waterton (q.v.). Waterton's father purchased Walton Hall in British Guiana just before Charles Waterton arrived in the colony in 1805; the family was of Walton Hall in Yorkshire.

  1. According to Waterton's essays, "Our family found its way to the New World in the following manner: - My father's sister [Anne] was remarkably handsome. As she was one day walking in the streets of Wakefield, a gentleman, by name [Michael] Daly, from Demerara, met her accidentally, and fell desperately in love with her: they were married in due course of time, although the family was very much averse to the match. Soon after this, my father's younger brother [Christopher] , who had no hopes at home on account of the penal laws, followed his sister to Demerara, and settled there."

  2. About his continuing connections with British Guiana, he wrote "In the month of April, 1812, my father (Thomas) and uncle (Christopher) being dead, I delivered over the estates to those concerned in them, and never more put foot upon them. In my subsequent visits to Guiana, having no other object in view than that of natural history, I merely stayed a day or two in the town of Stabroek (now called George Town), to procure what necessaries I wanted; and then I hastened up into the forest of the interior, as the Wanderings will show".

  3. In 1861 Charles Waterton aged 78 widower Gentleman was living at Walton Hall Yorkshire with inter alios his sisters-in-law Eliza and Helen Edmonstone, aged 52 and 49, both 'Gentleman's daughter', both born Demerara.

  4. 'In later years John Edmonston, a freed slave Waterton had brought back from Guiana, taught Charles Darwin how to stuff birds, having been taught himself by Waterton.'


Sources

T71/885 British Guiana no. 693; Walter Rodney Guyanese Sugar Plantations footnote 37 p. 8; Yolanda Foote, ‘Waterton, Charles (1782–1865)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, Oct 2008 [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/28817, accessed 14 May 2014].

  1. Email from John Whitaker 02/03/2020 sourced to Waterton's essays.

  2. Ibid.

  3. 1861 census online.

  4. Yolanda Foote, ‘Waterton, Charles (1782–1865)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, Oct 2008 [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/28817, accessed 14 May 2014].

We are grateful to John Whitaker for his assistance with compiling this entry.


Further Information

Absentee?
British/Irish
School
Stonyhurst College
Occupation
Naturalist
Oxford DNB Entry

Associated Claims (2)

£16,283 6s 7d
Other association
£15,482 14s 8d
Other association

Legacies Summary

Cultural (1)

Natural History
...Waterton... 

Relationships (4)

Son-in-law → Father-in-law
Notes →
Charles Waterton married Charles Edmonstone's daughter...
Nephew → Aunt
Nephew → Uncle
First Cousins

Addresses (1)

Walton Hall, Yorkshire, Yorkshire, England