John Wedderburn of Spring Garden and St Marylebone

19th Aug 1743 - 1820


Biography

Planter and subsequently London West India merchant, partner in Wedderburn & Co. Son of Thomas Wedderburn of Cantra and Katharine Dunbar; first cousin of John Wedderburn of Balindean (q.v.) and James Wedderburn Colvile (q.v.).

John Wedderburn first went to Jamaica in 1762, and soon became a member of the Assembly. He subsequently held the rank of Lieut-Col. of the Hanover regiment of infantry and served as aide-de-camp to the Governor, Sir John Dalling (commission dated 20/11/1778). During his time in Jamaica he purchased significant amounts of land. His son, also John Wedderburn, recorded in his family history that by the time his father returned to Britain in 1789 he owned at least ten estates in Jamaica: Spring Garden, Mount Edgecombe Penn, Paradise Penn, Prospect, Bluecastle, Jerusalem, Moreland, Hill's Mountain, Burnt Savannah and Retreat. He also acted as trustee for his brother, in which role he assumed the administration of Mint and owned Fontabelle, which he passed to Andrew Colvile upon his marriage to his eldest daughter in 1802.

Upon returning from Jamaica, John Wedderburn purchased the estate of Lindertis, co. Forfar, where he resided until c. 1801. Upon his brother's death (James Wedderburn of Bluecastle (q.v.)) in 1799, John Wedderburn took over administration of his Jamaican estates and debts, owed to the family firm Webster, Wedderburn & Co. of Leadenhall St. He subsequently sold the Scottish estate and moved to London.

While in London Wedderburn resided successively in Upper Grosvenor St., Bedford Sq. and at 19 Devonshire Place, Portland Place.

John Wedderburn remained senior partner in the firm until 1820. He initially joined his cousin David Wedderburn-Webster, who had taken over the firm from James Webster of Clapham (q.v.), and was subsequently joined by his cousins Sir David Wedderburn (son of John Wedderburn of Balindean) and Andrew Colvile (son of James Wedderburn Colvile).

In 1782 John Wedderburn married Mary Wisdom Bedward (daughter and heiress of George Bedward of Spring Garden, Westmoreland, Jamaica and Susannah, sole surviving child and heiress of Robert Rutherford of Spring Garden) (q.v.). Together they had two sons and four daughters: Elizabeth Susannah Wedderburn (1783-1803), Mary Wedderburn (1786-1858), James Wedderburn (1788-1831) (q.v.), Catherine Georgina Wedderburn (1791-1814), Thomasina Wedderburn (1793-1806), John Wedderburn (1798-1839). The eldest three children were born at Bluecastle, Jamaica and the younger three in London.

The will of John Wedderburn of [Devonshire Street near Portland Place] St Marylebone was proved 15/06/1821. His will specifies his Jamaican property as including the Prospect and Spring Garden, and his pens as Negril, Mt Edgecombe and Paradise. Prospect was left to his younger son John and the rest of his estate to his elder son James.

Sources

Alexander Wedderburn, The Wedderburn Book: a history of the Wedderburns in the counties of Berwick and Forfar, designed of Wedderburn, Kingennie, Easter Powrie, Blackness, Balindean and Gosford, 1296-1896 (Published privately, 1898), pp. 339, 342, 345, 352-3, 442.

PROB 11/1640/114.

The image opposite is taken from The Wedderburn book opposite p. 344.


Further Information

Absentee?
British/Irish
Spouse
Mary Wisdom Bedward
Children
James (1788-1831), John (1798-1839), Elizabeth (?-1803), Mary (?-1856), Katherine Georgiana (?]1863), Thomasina (?-1806)
Will
A will but no further details
Occupation
Merchant and plantation owner

Associated Estates (17)

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
1800 [EA] - 1807 [LA] → Owner
1820 [EA] - 1820 [LA] → Not known

Shown as owner in a single year, 1820: otherwise it was shown against Joseph Stone Williams

1798 [EA] - 1807 [LA] → Mortgagee-in-Possession

The partnership of David Webster, John Wedderburn and David Wedderburn were the mortgagees-in-possession from at least 1798 and successor partnerships until at least 1807.

1804 [EA] - 1807 [LA] → Owner
1803 [EA] - 1820 [EY] → Owner
1798 [EA] - 1804 [LA] → Owner
1798 [EA] - 1807 [LA] → Owner

Inferred to be John Wedderburn of Spring Garden and St Marylebone based on common attorneys with other estates known to have belonged to John Wedderburn of Spring Garden and St Marylebone

1799 [SY] - 1820 [EY] → Trustee and Executor

Trustee to his brother James Wedderburn. Trust in favour of John Wedderburn's eldest son, also James.

1815 [EA] - 1820 [EY] → Owner
1815 [EA] - 1820 [EY] → Owner
1832 [EA] - → Previous owner
1815 [EA] - 1820 [EY] → Owner
- 1832 [LA] → Previous owner
1799 [EA] - 1820 [EY] → Owner
1799 [EA] - 1821 [EY] → Owner

1799 is currently first record of John Wedderburn as owner but it is highly likely that he came into possession of the estate during his time residence in Jamaica from the 1760s to 1789.

1787 [SY] - 1820 [EY] → Owner

John Wedderburn took possession of Spring Garden following the death of his father-in-law George Bedward in 1787. Wedderburn married Mary Wisdom Bedward (q.v.) in 1782. Mary was sole heiress to her father George Bedward (q.v.) and mother Susannah, sole surviving child and heiress of Robert Rutherford of Spring Garden.

1804 [EA] - 1807 [LA] → Owner

Legacies Summary

Commercial (1)

Partner
Wedderburn, Webster
West India merchant  
 

Relationships (36)

Business partners
Executor → Testator
Father → Son
Other relatives
Testator → Executor
Testator → Trustee
First Cousins
First Cousins
Other relatives
Business partners
Father-in-law → Son-in-law
Other relatives
Business partners
Brothers
Brothers
Father → Son
Executor → Testator
Trustee → Testator
Testator → Trustee
Testator → Executor
Testator → Trustee
Testator → Executor
Father → Daughter
Father → Daughter
Father → Daughter
Husband → Wife
Testator → Executor
Testator → Trustee
Grandfather → Grandson
Father-in-law → Daughter-in-law
Brother → Sister
Brother → Sister
Brother → Sister
Brother → Sister
Executor → Testator
Trustee → Testator

Addresses (6)

Forres, Moray, North-east Scotland, Scotland
Lindertis, Forfarshire, North-east Scotland, Scotland
Chigwell, Essex, South-east England, England
19 Devonshire Place, London, Middlesex, London, England
Bedford Square, London, Middlesex, London, England
Notes →

At some point between 1806 (when he is recorded at Upper Grosvenor Street) and 1819 (when he is recorded at 19 Devonshire Place).

Upper Grosvenor Street, London, Middlesex, London, England