???? - 1791
Absentee slave-owner in Jamaica, through his second wife Ann or Anne Chaplin. Died at Stivichall Coventry c. 1791.
Owner of Barbican estate in St Andrew, Jamaica, in 1755. The estate was the subject of the Chancery suit of Alden v Gregory in 1764, in which the acquisition of the estate by Charles Chaplin, the grandfather of 'Mrs Gregory', was contested by the heirs of Charles Alden, the original owner.
"Letter from Arthur Gregory to his successor, relating that he came into his estate in 1738, with a rental of 650 pounds, but a debt of 2000 pounds with two fortunes of 500 pounds apiece to his sisters and a fortune of 500 pounds to his brother unpaid, an annuity to his uncle Gregory of 40 pounds, his Stichall tenants in arrears and the buildings out of repair; that the enclosure and improvements he made cost 3000 pounds, a new mansion house 6000 pounds [see no. 1518], and that the estate is now let for 1408 pounds; that his first wife's fortune was 3000 pounds and she lived for four years after the marriage; that his second wife's estate 'after the loss of the Jamaica estate which cost me as much in defending a long Chancery suit as I ever received from it', was worth 6000 pounds of which 3800 pounds are in funds; that by her he had fifteen children, eight now living. 'Econemy and frugality was my plan of life, and I recommend it to my successor as the way to make his life a happy one and enjoy that moderate fortune I have left him; that he observes this maxim not to live to the extent of his income but to keep within it.'"
Arthur Gregory married Ann Chaplin at Oxford Chapel, Vere Street, London, in 1749. According to the marriage settlement, Ann's mother was Dame Elizabeth Chaplin of Hollis Street, Marylebone, widow.
The will of Arthur Gregory of Stivichall in the city of Coventry [made in 1791] was proved 15/02/1792. It is silent on Jamaica property.
For information on the building of Stivichall Hall whilst he was head of the family, see Robert Bearman, ‘A Lost Warwickshire Country House: Stivichall Hall’ in Warwickshire History, I, No. 3, (Spring 1970) with addendum in No. 4.
CO137/28 pp. 169-175 transcribed at http://www.jamaicanfamilysearch.com/Members/1753Andrew.htm; 'Alden v Gregory' in Reports of Cases Argued and Determined in the Court of Chancery from 1757 to 1766 (London, 1839), pp. 164-165.
Correspondence - Gregory Family, held by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, DR10/1978, described http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/dbb024af-f2ec-4f05-acee-5517c5a79f0c [accessed 24/01/2018].
Ancestry.com, England, Select Marriages, 1538-1973 [database online]; https://collections.shakespeare.org.uk/search/archive/arch-82620 [accessed 21/12/2021].
We are grateful to Robert Bearman for his assistance with compiling this entry.
Twice, secondly to Ann or Anne Chaplin
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:
1753 [EA] - → Owner
Stivichall Hall [Built]
"The Gregory family built Stivichall Hall to the south-east of the church between 1750 and 1760, probably on a newly-inclosed site. Its main approach was by a drive which ran from lodge gates on the...
Stivichall Hall, Coventry, Warwickshire, West Midlands, England