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This file is devoted to presenting basic Timeline information for website readers. The items are often sketchy, and some have been extracted from other websites managed by Dan Byrnes. These Timelines will be added-to intermittently, as new data and new e-mail arrives. Book titles will be entered according to the timeframes they treat. Updated 11 December 2009<>To go to the next file in this Merchant Networks Timelines series of files, go to - Timelines5
|Merchant Networks Timelines|
|From 1500 to 1930||There are now 21 files in this series|
|Files are filled with data for ten-year periods (decadally)||These data have been years in compilation. Their trend is to follow the changing shapes of the British Empire.|
1750++: James G. Parker, 'Scottish Enterprise in India, 1750-1914', pp. 191-219 in R. A. Cage, (Ed.), The Scots Abroad: Labour, Capital, Enterprise, 1750-1914. London, Croom Helm, 1985.
1750: Using the ship William, Samuel Sedgeley and Co. of Bristol were transporting nearly all the convicts of the western part of England to Maryland. By 1760 the firm was called Sedgeley and Hillhouse. (A. E. Smith, Colonists in Bondage, p. 115.)
1750: The British East India Company assumes control of Bengal
and Bihar, opium-growing districts of India. British shipping
dominates the opium trade out of Calcutta to China.
(From website based on book: Opium: A History, by Martin Booth Simon and Schuster, Ltd., 1996. e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org)
1750 Circa: Sir William Baker KT MP alderman is a director of EICo, a West Indies and American merchant, friend of Marquis of Rockingham. In 1751 a director of South Sea Co is Richard Baker, Madeira merchants.
1750++: Re Maxine Young's work, Cf., E. A. Reitan, 'The Civil List in Eighteenth Century British Politics: Parliamentary Supremacy versus the Independence of the Crown', Historical Journal, 9, 1966., pp. 318-327.
1751: More to come
1752: H. Crabb Boulton MP Paymaster to EICo till 1752, director 1753-1773 and several times chairman.
1752: Last day in Britain of use of the Julian Calendar. Replaced by Gregorian Calendar (an eleven-day difference).
1752: Radical London alderman John Wilkes was born on 17 October, 1752 the son of pious and well-to-do parents. His father was Isaac Wilkes a distiller of St John's Square, Clerkenwell. (George Rude, Wilkes and Liberty: A Social Study of 1763 to 1774. Oxford, 1962., p. 17). Wilkes first married the affluent Mary Meade of Aylesbury.
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Follows material on family of Lord Mayor 1753-1754 Sir Thomas
2. London Lord Mayor Sir Thomas Rawlinson (c.1753) sp: Dorothea Ray
3. Alderman MP Sir Walter Rawlinson (b.1734;d.1805) sp: Mary Ladbroke
4. Anne Rawlinson wife1 sp: Chancellor Exchequer, naval treasurer, John Aislabie (b.1670;d.1742)
5. William Aislabie MP (b.1699;d.1781) sp: Elizabeth Cecil wife1 (m.1722;d.6 Apr 1733) 6. Anna Sophia Aislabie sp: William (Laurence) Lawrence MP (b.1723;m.21 Nov 1759;d.1798) sp: Elizabeth Vernon wife2 (m.6 Sep 1745) 6. Elizabeth Aislabie coheir (c.1765) sp: Charles Allanson MP (b.1720;m.14 Feb 1765;d.1775) 5. Mary Aislabie sp: MP Sir Henry Slingsby, Bart5 (b.1693;m.1729;d.18 Jan 1763) 3. Susannah Rawlinson (d.27 Sep 1816) sp: EICo chairman, Sir George Wombwell, Bart1 (b.1734;d.4 Jun 1765) 4. Sir George Wombwell, Bart2 (b.14 Mar 1769) sp: Anne Belasyse 5. Sir George Wombwell, Bart3 (b.13 Apr 1792) sp: Georgiana Hunter (m.23 Jun 1824) 6. Sir George Orby Wombwell, Bart4 (b.23 Nov 1832) sp: Julia Sarah Alice Child-Villiers 7. Julia Georgiana Sarah Wombwell-92530 sp: Vesey Dawson Earl2 Dartrey (b.22 Apr 1842;m.29 Aug 1882) 6. Sir Henry Herbert Wombwell, Bart5 sp: Myrtle Mabel Muriel Mostyn
1753: Sir Edward Ironside Lord Mayor of London.
Follows an impression of family history of Banker, London Lord
Mayor, Sir Edward Ironside:
1. Banker, Sir Edward Ironside (c.1753) sp: Miss Notknown
2. Jane Ironside wife1 (d.1738) sp: Banker MP William Belchier (d.1772)
Belchier bankrupted in 1760. Earlier he had received much money via remittances from Clive of India. Thus, he is a failed banker with Belchier and Ironside, later with How, and later of 34 Nicholas Lane. On Ironside, see Namier/Brooke, Vol. 2, p. 80. Sutherland, Braund, p. 156. Namier, Structure, p. 55.
1753: Linnaeus, the father of botany, first classifies the
poppy, Papaver somniferum - 'sleep-inducing', in his book
(From website based on book: Opium: A History, by Martin Booth Simon and Schuster, Ltd., 1996. e-mail email@example.com)
1753: 1750-1753 - A slave ship the Duke of Argyle about 1750 carried the slaver John Newton who later converted to Christianity and wrote hymns including the famous Amazing Grace. (James Walvin, Black Ivory: A History of British Slavery. London, Harper Collins, 1992., pp. 38-40, 46-47, 59, 219).
1753: George II of England gives East India Co. permission to administer Calcutta.
List of London Bankers 1754:
BLAND, BRASSEY and LEE, CAMPBELL, CHILDS and BACKWELL at Temple Bar, GISSINGHAM COOPER, DRUMMOND, FREAME and BARCLAY, GIBSON, GOSLING and BENNET, HANKEY, HOARE and ARNOLD, HONEYWOOD and FULLER, MARTINS, STONE and BLACKWELL, MINORS and BOLDERO, PEWTRESS and BOLDERO, SNOW and DENN without Temple Bar, SURMAN, DINELY and CLIFF, VERE, GLYNN and HALIFAX.
From Little London Directory 1677 by J. C. Hutton, reprinted in The Handbook of London Bankers F. G. Hilton-Price, 1876.
1754: When The Royal Society was founded in 1754, an original subscriber was John Julius Angerstein aged less than 20. There were only seventeen original members. The Society was a brainchild of William Shipley, son of a stationer, a provincial drawing master. By 1764 the Society had over 2100 supporters in Britain. As early as 1757 it had remained concerned about supplies of naval timber, by 1756 it had noted France had recently been remapped and it wanted the same for Britain, new cartography. By 1761 it began to promote useful inventors. (Linda Colley, Britons: Forging the Nation 1707-1837. London. Yale University Press. 1992., p. 90).
1755: Samuel Johnson issues his Dictionary of English language.
1756: By 25 June, 1756, the ship Lux, 100 tons, sailed for Sydenham and Hodgson, landing 47 London convicts at Annapolis. Notable here was Jonathan Forward Sydenham of London for whom some early dates are 1721-1722, then 1749, London. Jonathan Forward Sydenham was a nephew of Jonathan Forward. Information on long-standing English provincial intermarriages between the names Sydenham and St Barbe are explained elsewhere on this website, see entry on John St Barbe. (Sources: Oldham, Britain's Convicts, p. 13.
1756: As war broke out, one of the Russia Company, Jonas Hanway, who had inherited the mantle of Coram, met with 22 merchants at King's Arms tavern at Cornhill to establish the Marine Society to get unemployed people, vagrants and orphaned pauper lads into the Royal Navy. At the end of 1756 the society had over 1500 subscribers and sent 10,000 men and boys out to sea. (Colley, Britons, pp. 91-92). In 1759, Hanway organised a similar society, the Troop Society, to help soldiers fighting in North America.
1756: "Black Hole" of Calcutta.
1757: The American merchant Charles Willing was wanting to deal with Anthony Bacon in April 1757. Charles Willing merchant, began as Charles and Thomas Willing in 1726; later the firm became Charles Willing and Co. Robert Morris became a partner. When Charles Willing died, the business went to his son Thomas Willing; the birth of this firm was on May 1, 1757. Robert Morris' father, son of a mariner, was originally a nailmaker, or ironworker, from Liverpool; later living at Oxford in Maryland. [See Ellis P. Oberholtzer, Robert Morris, Patriot and Financier. 1903.] Morris senior acted as a tobacco agent for a Liverpool firm), Foster, Cunliffe and Sons of Liverpool. Robert Morris was born January 31, 1734 in Liverpool; later he was sent to Philadelphia. Morris when with Charles Willing became successful as a supercargo on voyages to the West Indies; at about the age of 25 he was once captured by French privateers. Thomas Willing, called "Old Square Toes", had been educated to London's Inns of Court; he returned to Philadelphia to take a place with his father's existing firm. Another family link was Thomas Willing of London, who traded to Britain, Portugal, Spain, the West Indies, using the firm Mayne Burn and Mayne in Lisbon; in Madrid were Scott, Pringle and Co, and in Jamaica was Samuel Bean, Codrington Carrington in Barbados and Andrew Lessley in Antigua. Trade from 1778 was in flour and wheat to Ireland or Britain, lumber and provisions to West Indies, dry goods from Britain; salt, lemons and wine from Portugal and Spain, rum and molasses from the West Indies. Willing also headed an insurance group. Willing and Morris owned perhaps three ships, with Robert Morris the main manager of shipping by 1775. (Sources: Clarence L. Ver Steeg, Robert Morris: Revolutionary Financier (with an analysis of his earlier career). New York, Octagon, 1972. Ellis P. Oberholtzer, Robert Morris, Patriot and Financier. 1903.)
1757: Military success for Clive of India, Battle of Plassey
gives England territorial power in Bengal.
Or, Robert Clive defeats Siraj-ud-daula, Nawab of Bengal, at Battle of Plassey.
Follows an edited impression of the genealogy of Clive of
Descendants of MP Richard Clive of Salop:
1. Richard MP Clive of Salop (b.1693;d.1771) sp: Rebecca Gaskell
2. Robert Clive Baron1 Clive, of India (b.1725;d.1774) sp: Margaret Maskelyne (b.1736;m.1753;d.1816);
3. Edward Clive Baron2 Clive, Earl1 Powis Baron8 Powis (b.1754;d.1839) sp: Henrietta Antonia Herbert (b.1758;m.1784;d.1830);
4. Henrietta Antonia Clive sp: Sir, Bart5 Watkin Williams-Wynn (b.1772;m.1817;d.1840)
5. MP, Sir Bart6 Watkin Williams-Wynn Royal ADC (b.1820) sp: his cousin Mary Emily Williams-Wynn;
6. Louisa Alexandra Williams-Wynn sp: Sir, Bart7 Herbert Lloyd Watkin Williams-Wynn (b.1860)
4. Edward Clive Earl2 Powis Earl7 Powis Baron9 Powis (b.1785;d.1848) sp: Lucy Graham (b.1793;m.1818;d.1875);
5. Sir Percy Egerton Herbert KCB (d.1786) sp: Mary Petty-Fitzmaurice
6. George Charles Herbert Earl9 Powis, Baron11 Powis (b.1862) sp: Violet Ida Evelyn Sackville-FOX (m.1890)
5. Lucy Caroline HOWARD sp: MP Frederick CALVERT (b.1806;d.1891) 5. Edward James Herbert Earl8 Powis, Baron10 Powis (b.1818;d.1891);
4. Hon Robert Henry Clive (d.1854) sp: Lady Harriet Windsor Baron13 Windsor Lady Bedchamber (b.1797;m.1819;d.1869) 5. Lt-Col Robert Windsor-Clive (b.1824;d.1859) sp: Mary Selina Louisa Bridgeman (m.1852;d.1889) 6. Robert George Windsor-Clive, Earl Plymouth, Baron14 Windsor (b.1857) sp: Alberta Victoria Sarah Paget (m.1883);
7. MP Ivor Miles Windsor-Clive Visc Windsor (b.1889;d.1943) sp: Irene Corona Charteris (b.1902;m.1921) 8. Other Robert Ivor Windsor-Clive Earl3 Plymouth sp: Caroline Helen RICE (m.1950) 7. MP J. M. Windsor-Clive Earl2 Plymouth;
4. Charlotte Florentia Clive sp: Hugh Percy Duke3 Northumberland, Lord Percy (b.1785;m.1817;d.1847);
3. Rebecca Clive sp: Lt-General John Robinson ;
4. Charlotte Robinson wife3 (d.1813) sp: Lord Treasury, William Eliot Baron3 St Germans, Earl2 St Germans (m.1812);
5. Charlotte Sophia Eliot wife1 (d.1839) sp: Rev. George MARTIN (b.1791;d.1860);
6. Jemima Anne Frances MARTIN (d.1920) sp: General, Sir Charles Cooper Johnson (b.1827;m.1860)
1758: Stephenson, Randolph and Cheston of Bristol: From 1758-1760, the name is noted at Bristol of Sedgely and Co (Hillhouse and Randolph). This firm became [William] Stephenson, Randolph and Cheston. By 1766, Sedgely and Co at Bristol were replaced by William Randolph, William Stevenson, James Cheston, Bristol. Cheston: Sources: A. E. Smith, Colonists in Bondage. Kenneth Morgan, 'The Organisation of the Convict Trade to Maryland': Stevenson, Randolph and Cheston, 1768-1775', William and Mary Quarterly, Series 3, Vol. 42, No. 2, April 1985., pp. 201-227. (Oldham, Britain's Convicts.)
List of London Bankers 1759:
BLAND and Son, BLAND, GRAY and STEPHENSON, BRASSEY, LEE & son, CAMPBELL and COUTTS, CASTELL and Son, CHILDS and Co., Temple Bar, CLIFFE, WALPOLE and CLARKE, COLEBROOKE James and George, COOPER, GISSINGHAM, DRUMMOND, FREAME, BARCLAY and FREAME, FULLER , Son and WELCH, GINES, GOSLING, BENNET and GOSLING, HUNT and ROBINSON, MARTINS, STONE and BLACKWELL, MINORS and BOLDERO, PEWTRESS and ROBARTS, ROFFEY, NEALE, JAMES and FORDYCE, SMITH and PAYNE, SNOW and DENN without Temple Bar, VERE, GLYNN and HALIFAX, WILLIS, READE and Co., WRIGHT.
From Little London Directory 1677 by J. C. Hutton, reprinted in The Handbook of London Bankers F. G. Hilton-Price, 1876.
Follows an impression of the family history of London Lord Mayor
of 1759 Sir Richard Glyn
Descendants of London Lord Mayor, Banker Sir Richard Glyn, Bart1
1. Banker London Lord Mayor, Sir Richard Glyn, Bart1 (c.1755;d.1773) sp: Elizabeth wife2 Carr heiress (c.1750;m.1754;d.1814) 2. London Lord Mayor Sir Richard Carr Glyn, Bart1 (b.1755;d.27 Apr 1838) sp: Mary Plumptre 3. Banker Sir Richard Plumptre Glyn, Bart (b.1787;d.1863) 3. Thomas Christopher Glyn husband1 (c.1817;d.19 Aug 1827) sp: Grace Julie (cousin) Bigge (c.1817;m.1817;d.30 Sep 1872) 3. Robert Glyn sp: Frederica Harford gdr Baltimore 3. London Lord Mayor George Carr Glyn Baron1 Wolverton (b.27 Mar 1797;d.24 Jul 1873) sp: Marianne Grenfell (b.22 Sep 1802;m.17 Mar 1823;d.30 Mar 1892) 4. Banker George Grenfell Glyn Brn2 Wolverton (b.10 Feb 1824;d.6 Nov 1887) sp: Georgiana Maria Tufnell-43451 (b.11 Oct 1825;m.22 Jun 1848;d.10 Jan 1894) 4. Banker St Leger Richard Glyn (b.3 Oct 1825;d.16 Apr 1873) sp: Florence Elizabeth Williams (m.5 Jun 1855;d.14 Sep 1887) 5. Florence Elizabeth Mary Glyn CBE sp: Sir William Whyndham Portal, Bart2 (m.23 Jun 1880) 5. Constance Gertrude Glyn (d.12 Apr 1933) sp: George Henry Eyre Matcham (m.5 Jun 1889) 4. Banker Pascoe Glyn sp: Miss Mildmay 4. Bishop Rev Peterborough Glyn 4. Vice-Admiral Henry Carr-Glynn Glyn (b.1830;d.16 Feb 1884) sp: Rose Mahony
5. Banker Henry Richard Glyn Brn3 Wolverton (b.18 Jul 1861;d.2 Jul 1888) 5. Banker Frederic Glyn Brn4 Wolverton (b.24 Sep 1864;d.3 Oct 1932) sp: Edith Amelia Ward (m.5 Jan 1895) 5. Rose Riversdale Glynn (b.10 Mar 1860) sp: Montagu Charles Francis Bertie Lord Norreys (b.3 Oct 1860;m.25 Jul 1885) 4. Capt. Sydney Carr Glyn (b.11 Oct 1835;d.26 Feb 1916) sp: Fanny Marescaux (m.31 Dec 1868) 5. Major-General Arthur St Leger Glyn (b.11 Nov 1870;d.30 Nov 1922) sp: Amy Frances Hohler (m.7 Jul 1908) 6. George Carr Glyn (d.12 Mar 1905) sp: Kate Alice Ashmead (m.13 Jul 1894) 4. Barrister Ashley Glyn (b.20 Nov 1839;d.11 Sep 1875) sp: Mary Louisa Duncombe (m.21 Feb 1871) 4. Rev Edward Glyn sp: Lady Mary Campbell (m.4 Jul 1882) 4. Alice Carr Glyn sp: Jocelyn Earl5 Chichester Pelham 5. Banker ??? Earl6 Chichester Pelham sp: Miss Buxton 2. Grenadier Guards Colonel Thomas Glyn sp: Miss wife1 Lewen, a fortune
Below are items still uncollected
By Dan Byrnes
THIS ARTICLE aims to sharpen focus on commercial histories in the British East which may or may not be relevant to the commercial history of colonial New South Wales. New material has recently come to light prompting this inquiry - and this article will appear on the Internet for a period as a work-in progress. One purpose of an exercise in refocusing is to indicate how genealogical material links to commercial histories, and vice-versa. Presently on the Internet, many people with genealogical interests seem unable to grapple with commercial history, while in turn, many commercial histories of Britain's "Far Eastern" traders are partially deficient, although otherwise respectable, for lack of relevant genealogical information.
For an Australian, as the present writer is, it is also evident that historians from many countries (as well as genealogical researchers on the Net) are insufficiently aware of how operators based mostly in Australia dealt with commercial partners from London east around the world to Canton. When in fact, Australia is located merely south of what Britishers regarded as "the Far East". "Just who dealt with whom, in what sorts of patterns?" is the question.
The only way out of an apparent impasse is for someone, somewhere, to list various family names and commercial operations of which the researcher could be aware for purposes of beginning. This proposes a problem, being: which model(s) of information-handling will be best to use? Particularly in terms of the needs of genealogical researchers who might be familiar with UK history, but not related Indian or Australasian histories. In terms of commercial histories, the problem is with how to be suitably internationalist in outlook. And so on.
In terms of how Australians tend to regard the business of transporting convicts, in up to 1038 transport ships, as one Australian website has it, it is only recently, due to the work of maritime and business historian Frank Broeze, who had a Dutch/European, not Australian background, that it became easy, in terms of the technicalities of sailing ship management, to speak of the internationalism or trans-oceanic aspects of operations. But in his own work, Broeze did not begin at the beginnings of convict transportation, so a gulf of ignorance appears between 1786 and when the timeframes of Broeze's work are displayed, from the 1820s. And otherwise, the unity of commercial and maritime endeavour tends to be ignored. In which case, this article also aims to establish unities between genealogical information, commercial histories, and maritime-based endeavour in the Indian, Chinese and Australasian regions.
One inspiration for this inquiry is a masterly treatment by the
US historian, Jacob Price, on some families who found that
commercially, drastically, they had to regroup after the American
Revolution. Some family members developed careers in India.
(See Jacob M. Price, 'One Family's Empire: The Russell-Lee-Clerk Connection in Maryland, Britain and India, 1707-1857', Maryland Historical Magazine, Vol. 72, 1977., pp. 165-225.)
A far more primitive outlook than Price's was expressed in the early 1930s... by Hodson, who was certainly not interested in the breadth of trade in the British Empire of which he was evidently so fond:
Still, THE HODSON LISTS form a useful basis for
cross-referencing British-based families active in Nineteenth
Century British India.
See Major V. C. P. Hodson, "Some families with a long East India Connection", The Genealogists' Magazine, (UK), issues March, June, September, December, 1932/December 1933.
Part of Hodson's introduction reads (rather offensively if one has any fondness for the Indian population of India, which is to say, the human majority!):
"Some people will tell you that if there were but a single loaf of bread in all India it would be divided equally between the Plowdens, the Trevors, the Beadons, and the Rivett-Carnacs. That is only one way of saying that certain families served India generation after generation". Thus wrote Kipling in 'The Tomb of his Ancestors', and he might, with equal justice, have included in his list the Colvins, the Prinseps, the Thackerays, the Bechers, the Stracheys..."
Later, when finishing his article, Hodson mentions more names which could be added: Anderson, Barlow, Boddam, Bracken, Brooke, Bushby, Cadell of Cockenzie (?), Chase, Davis, Farquharson, Fendall, Golding, Harington, Harrison, Lewin, Malet, Master, Metcalfe, Millett, Oakes, Oldfield, Oldham, Ommanney, Robinson, Rumbold, Sewell, Stonhouse, Thackeray, Travers.
Note: Many of the family names mentioned by Hodson are treated below, however briefly.
Hodson above incidentally treats few family names found in the histories of maritime endeavour. The names Hodson mentions are mostly those of East India Company administrators, soldiers, judges and others with official duties - people with mostly land-based careers.
Whereas, a wide-ranging treatment of the British families involved with maritime endeavour will often end up also mentioning maritime and/or commercial links to Australasia. Many of those names, or their associates, were also connected with convict or emigrant shipping to Australian colonies. These links have been little-studied by Australians, which means, history readers in other countries are also ignorant of many linkages. Matters here become a question of establishing patterns which have greatest explanatory power.For anyone interested in the family histories of British-based families in India, Price's article remains a model for research. In some ways, this article will follow Price's example, in that, genealogically, some Scots with members of their family associated with the noted Bombay traders, from 1811, Forbes and Company, were earlier resident in South Carolina. After 1775, the people treated in Price's article meandered rather untidily about "the British Empire of their day", and so did the trader names to be treated here. Interestingly, some members of the families of investor names in Forbes and Co. were connected with convict shipping (notably the names Wigram and Money), while other people made their way to Australia or New Zealand - which did not happen with the names treated in Price's article. A Bitter Pill This article will treat a variety developments which were not alluded to in Price's article, events associated with the commercial history of colonial New South Wales. The new British colony at Sydney from 1788 almost naturally came to attention of British traders in the East, but it still remains difficult to establish which of them took the most notice of New South Wales by way of trading to there. It is thought that the noted Sydney trader, originally from India via his birthplace, Greenock in Scotland, Robert Campbell "of the Wharf", traded with Forbes and Co. of Bombay. A review of Campbell's activities could assist any intention to refocus attention on commercial histories. Views, often complimentary, on Robert Campbell's commercial activities tend to stud most books on the early commercial history of New South Wales, and initially, it might be assumed that anything new found on his associates based in India might throw new light on New South Wales' commercial history?
And so we proceed...
Robert Campbell's brother John remained in India when Robert decided in the late 1790s to move to Sydney. John remains little-known; he evidently did not marry, and it does seem that he was unpopular with Britishers in India due to his attitude about handling debt monies. (Rarely during his long career was Robert accused of slackness in money matters). Few writers have wondered what happened to John. Meanwhile, a variety of views are provided in my website, http://www.danbyrnes.com.au/blackheath - The Blackheath Connection, on commercial men based in London who might have traded, or did trade, with the convict colonies of Australia. Treating London-based traders and bankers is one thing, only. There is also a question of perspective to be noted - what the British called "the Far East" is actually to Australia's north, but this is not the way that historians, with their choice of vocabulary, regard the obvious geographic dispositions. In a way, it can be said that as the Australian colonies grew, to their north was an Eastern-based "roofline" of British (and Asian, South-East Asian and even Indian) traders operating from Bombay, west to "Canton" and Hong Kong, China - with whom Australians might have interacted.
For those "Far Eastern traders", who by the late 1790s might be routinely managing ten or more ships, the Australian colonies offered small pickings. Yet while Australians did deal with them from time to time, it remains difficult to tease out the shapes of any developed commercial patterns. (History books do treat many little-developed trade patterns, which is part of the problem it is hoped this article will help address). To date, few Australian, British or Asian-based historians have collected information on the British traders visible on what I am calling, "the Australian-Eastern roofline". The career of Robert Campbell is, hopefully, one Australian example allowing the historian to fruitfully re-examine the population of this "roofline" who had any influence, or not, for the Australian trader with a yen to engage in any sort of international trade.
Further, certain other questions will render any re-examination of the "roofline's" population somewhat problematical. From 1783-1786, US traders, and it was a definite novelty to US entrepreneurs and mariners, began penetrating Eastern markets, lucratively. At times they alarmed Britain's East India traders, but oddly enough, US historians have yet to produce a useful overview of the maritime-commercial histories involved. (Privately, one university historian has told me that the writing of the histories of Sino-US relations has been dominated, or led, by those concerned with US-Christian missionary endeavour, a certain disappointment for the maritime-commercially-minded historian. The situation is probably worse for histories of US-Indian relations - with the notable exception of the excellent work of the US historian, Holden Furber).
See Holden Furber, Rival Empires of Trade in the Orient, 1600-1800. Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press, c.1976.; Holden Furber, (Edited by Rosane Rocher), Private Fortunes and Company Profits in the India Trade in the Eighteenth Century. ??? Published 1998.; Holden Furber, 'The Beginnings of American Trade with India, 1784-1812', The New England Quarterly, June, 1938., pp. 235-265.; Holden Furber, `The United Company of Merchants of England Trading to the East Indies, 1783-1796', ECHR, 10, (2), November 1940., pp. 138-147.; Holden Furber, John Company at Work. Cambridge, Mass., Harvard University Press, 1948.; Holden Furber, `American Trade', New England Quarterly, June 1938, pp. 255-256.
As well, British historians have generally been uninterested in treating in detail any commercial anxieties the US traders gave to either the English East India Company's official servants, or British-Eastern free traders (sometimes called "country traders"). Naturally, in the time frame in question, the early 1790s to 1815, British historians are rather concerned with the implications of Anglo-French conflict, and such concerns can also visit perspectives on British India, and later, the British-Australian concern to settle Western Australia before anyone else did - particularly the French! In short, the history of international trade in eastern and Australasian regions 1790-1820 is fretted by nationalistically-orientated biases, which inevitably reduce the sample-size of the information-sets that historians feel they should consult. So historians simply do not visit those information-sets.
This is regrettable, since the internationalism of the trades involved can be quite entertaining, even for the cynic. (The present writer has worked in newspapers, and notes that from 1800 in major Indian port cities, the British and US traders sometimes differed markedly, and entertainingly, about serious issues of press freedom. Usually, the British won such arguments, meaning, press freedom also lost. Press freedom also became an issue in New South Wales during the timeframes considered here.)
Problematically, as well, to the present day, trade in
opium from India to China from the 1760s (for the British) and from
the 1790s (for the US observer) remains a bone of contention. Just
who of British and US traders profited most from the opium trades
is a problem that continues to worry many "researchers". This
problem becomes rather fascinating, culturally, since in today's
Internet-riddled world of information, with genealogy-pursuits
internationally perhaps the second or third-most popular
preoccupation of netsurfers, (behind pornography), descendants of
men involved in the opium trades have little protection from
commentators wishing to list "opium traders". Genealogically-linked
anxieties can be predicted to grow in intensity and range. But it
is more complex than this in commercial history. Anxieties
continue, especially as observed within the contents of various US
websites, about the financial careerism of profits from trade in
opium, perhaps to the present day. A variety of conspiracy theories
proliferate in the US, with some concerns regarding the histories
of certain pharmaceutical companies since the days of "the opium
See for example, A. Ralph Epperson, The Unseen Hand; An Introduction to the Conspiratorial View of History. Tuscon, Arizona, Publius Press, 1985. Thirteenth printing of 1992. And more so: Dr. John Coleman, Conspirators' Hierarchy: The Story of the Committee of 300. Carson City, NV, America West Publishers, 1992.
And of course, the Anglo-Sino opium wars of the late 1830s, extraordinary in Hong Kong's history, widely-regarded as reprehensible on the part of the British, remain something to point at. Traffick in opium was illegal in China, but not in the Indian, South-East Asian European world at the time. If any awe existed in the non-Chinese world of those times, it was not about the drug opium, or any legal or moral questions, it was awe at the amounts of money involved!
In today's Internet-world and in the future, any descendant of anyone connected with Jardine-Matheson to the 1840s will simply have to put up with a certain amount of "historical information" being freely available on the Internet. Inevitably, given the information-sets consulted for the preparation of this article, the present writer makes no apology for any suggestions given below about people engaged in "opium trading". In fact, it is impossible to seriously pursue the questions outlined above regarding commercial careers, without also considering traffick in opium. Oddly enough, the question of Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century family involvement in convict transportation also still seems to bother a variety of British families, who prefer not to advertise their families' maritime endeavours. This in fact is reminiscent of the prejudice, still not entirely lost in Australia, of feeling shame at the discovery that a family has a convict ancestor.
An advance it seems was made by 2000 with the publication
of Anne Bulley's book on the managers of Bombay country ships.
Anne Bulley, Bombay Country Ships, 1790-1833. London, Curzon Press, 2000. ISBN 0-7007-1236-4., pp. 178ff.
Bulley's new work indicates that from 1799, former Bombay trader, the Scot, David Scott Senior (1746-1805), reorganised the India-China opium trade on a fresh basis. In his later years, he was a director, deputy-chairman and then chairman of the East India Co.
(Bulley, Bombay Ships, p. 108.) David Scott Snr. returns to England in 1785 to become director later twice chairman of East India Company. Henry Dundas (Lord Melville) has Scott's advice and that of Adamson, both looking out for "new trade outlets". Adamson by 1801 is being charged falsely it seems as being a company servant he is dealing a sheet copper privately, an article for East India Company handling only. Adamson is exonerated. Adamson is later Marine store keeper and Bombay paymaster. Scott resigns from East India Company board in April 1802, Adamson is more or less then also forced to resign, though Adamson continues with his own private trading.
It is clear then that Scott's reorganisation of the opium trade was direct, and so to speak, clear-sighted, accomplished from a powerful position in London. This is made clearer in Bulley's work than in any earlier-published work, as follows:
Genealogies on the merchants involved are still thin. But David Scott Senior was son of MP Robert Scott (active by 1705). Robert I MP had son Archibald an MP, who had a son a writer Robert II an EICo writer in Bengal. Robert II had two daughters. Robert I had son David Senior (founder of the opium consortium), who had a son David Junior. Robert I also had a daughter, name unknown, who married Mr. Shank and had sons Henry and Alexander (both of whom became opium dealers).
Between 1786-1799, the merchants/dealers David Scott Senior recruited, or saw recruited, into his consortium, or ring, included: his nephews Henry and Alexander Shank, a member of extended family, James Sibbald, brother of Miss Sibbald, wife of Henry Shank. (A ship named James Sibbald confirms the Scott-Shank-Sibbald connections.)
Scott Senior (died 1805 and ill in London since 1802) also recruited his long-time Bombay partner, Alexander Adamson (died 1807), also a cotton buyer, who probably recruited other men operating in the country trade. Who possibly included: (Daniel Beale (Daniel Beale and Co.) and Thomas Beale of Beale and Co., ... In 1787, a firm, (J. H.) Cox and Beale had been founded in Canton (it is unclear, with which Beale). In 1793, this firm Cox and Beale was renamed Beale and Reid.
Relatively little is known about the Reids recruited into
Scott's ring. They included, and their parentages are unknown:
Hugh Atkin Reid, active by 1813 if not earlier. It is unknown if he was directly related to the David Reid (active by 1801) also recruited by Scott. The firms Beale and Reid and Reid and Gildart are mentioned; information on the name Gildart does not surface. Part of the arrangements also seems to have been John Reid (active by 1780), of a China house (parents unknown). One of the Reids had a brother David who acted as "a Danish military officer", which David arrived in 1780 in China as Austrian Consul to China. He was a partner with John Henry Cox, also with Reid and Beale. There were also Andrew and David Reid, possibly sons of one of the above, who went into Fairlie, Reid and Co of Calcutta; but since little is known also of William Fairlie, or Beales, assessments become difficult.
Bulley, Bombay Ships, pp. 108ff. Coates, Macao, p. 73. W. E. Cheong, Jardine-Matheson, p. 10. Keswick, Thistle and Jade, pp. 50ff in an essay by Alan Reid, and appendices. S. B. Singh, Agency Houses, p. 13.
Bulley, Bombay Ships, pp. 108ff has her story on the
origins of Jardine Matheson as follows:
The first partnerships dates from 1799. An original partner with "root-money" declared he was the Danish King's Resident at Canton, to makes ruses about importing opium. . Two other of three major partners would owe favours for recommendations from David Scott, who put in his two Shank nephews, Henry (with Beale and Reid as partner) and Alexander Shank, (who was an East India Company servant, and secretary to Bombay governor Jonathan Duncan, in 1803.)
Alexander Shank was brother-in-law of James Sibbald, who was an assistant to William Fairlie at Calcutta. Fairlie's firm here would deal in China with Magniac and Co. Charles Magniac in turn joined with opium partners, Thomas Beale, David Reid, Alexander Shank and Robert Hamilton by 1801. In Canton, Robert Hamilton was appointed Genoese Consul. (There arose a firm, Beale and Magniac.)
Charles Magniac arrived in Canton as a Prussian vice-consul by
1801 (he died in Paris in 1824). Magniac by 1815 at least knew a
keen opium dealer, Thomas Charles Pattle who died in Macao in 1815,
since according to Pattle descendants, Magniac and Sir William
Fraser (who is hard to trace) proved the will of Thomas Charles
Pattle died 1815 in Macao. Magniac by 1803 joined Beale, Reid and
Co. as a partner. (Reid being John and David Reid, probably
(Bulley, Bombay Ships, pp. 108ff.)
Active between 1799-1810, and a nephew of David Scott Snr, was
opium trader Henry Shank, parents unknown, spouse of Miss Sibbald,
whose brother James Sibbald also traded opium for David Scott
Senior's consortium. He became part of the firm Shank/Hamilton to
compete with Magniacs in the opium trade.
(Bulley, Bombay Ships, pp. 108ff.) S. B. Singh, Agency Houses, index, p. 13. "A "powerful India merchant", see Parker's essay on Scots in India, p. 205 in R. A. Cage, Scots Abroad.
Active between 1797-1817 as an opium trader was Alexander Shank
of Magniac and Shank(s), an agency house. His parents are unknown,
but he was also a nephew of David Scott Snr. Alexander had arrived
in Canton by 1797 or earlier, but died at sea in 1817 with the
total loss of a ship Anna of Bombay. The firm Magniac and
Shanks engaged Charles and Hollingworth Magniac; this firm after
1820 was Charles Magniac and Co., and grew out of the 1815 crash of
Opium trade details in Bulley, Bombay Ships, pp. 108ff. W. E. Cheong, Mandarins and Merchants: Jardine Matheson, p. 56 for Shanks' death date. Keswick, Thistle and the Jade, appendices.
Notes on the Beale firms:
Thomas Beale arrived in Canton in 1791 as secretary to Prussian
Consul. By 1797 Thomas succeeded his brother Daniel Beale as
Prussian consul at Macao. (It is not clear when Daniel first
arrived in China.)
W. E. Cheong, Mandarins and Merchants: Jardine-Matheson, p. 10.)
Daniel Beale had arrived in China as "Prussian Consul" (and he may have had a son Daniel who was once years later taken into the family of Alexander Matheson in Glasgow.)
In 1793, the firm of Cox and Beale (founded in Canton in 1787)
is renamed Beale and Reid.
Keswick, Thistle and the Jade, on Jardine, appendices.)
By 1797, Beale and Co. had become the biggest of the country
traders, dealing with clients in Bombay, Calcutta, London, in
Indian cotton, sandalwood, tin, pepper Chinese tea and silk, plus
Coates, Macao and the British, p. 73, pp. 128ff.
Daniel Beale (and Company) seems to have been active between
1783-1793 in the opium trade. Daniel Beale in 1797 left China to
join Magniacs in London. By 1799-1803, Thomas Beale was part of the
major partnerships organised by David Scott for opium dealing.
Beale and Co. by 1805 was named (in standard lists of shipping) as
being interested in ships to China.
Bulley, Bombay ships, p. 63.
Beales seem to have been later associated with Magniac and Co. as follows:
(Thomas also has brother, David. who with Alexander Shanks (the
nephew of David Scott Snr?) form China agency of Beale and
W. E. Cheong, An Anglo-Spanish-Portuguese, p. 98, Note 5. Thomas Beale was 20 years the Prussian consul at Canton.
By 1814 some of the Beale partners became part of the firm, Charles Magniac and Alexander Shank(s). Magniac later started what became "Jardine and Matheson".)
1815: Thomas (the brother of Daniel Beale) in 1815 got caught in
an opium scare and owed the East India Company some 800,000
dollars, and bankrupted, as "most sensational bankruptcy of the
period", as Coates notes.
Coates, Macao and the British, pp. 140-141.
In 1825 Charles and Holingworth Magniac wished to retire to
England and wanted a partner, (there was also Daniel Magniac who
remained in China.) The Magniacs in 1825 then invited in a Scot,
William Jardine, an East India Company surgeon, who then worked in
Canton for a Parsi firm of Bombay who dealt in Malawa opium.
Jardine later joined Magniacs. When Charles Magniac departed as
Prussian consul, and "up went Danish colours", Daniel Magniac
married a local woman and was ostracised. But meantime, Jardine and
Matheson used a sleeping partner in London, Hollingworth Magniac.
In the longer term, the Beale firm however survived as Shank and
Magniac, then Magniac and Company. Thomas Beale lived on borrowed
money till 1841 when he suicided.
Bulley, Bombay Ships, p. 63, pp. 108ff. Coates, Macao and the British, pp. 140-141. W. E. Cheong, Mandarins and Merchants: Jardine Matheson, p. 269. W. E. Cheong, Opium Trade and Agencies in China. S. B. Singh, Agency Houses, p. 13.) (See also Helen Augur, Tall Ships to Cathay. nd?).
Also part of the Scott consortium was Alexander Adamson (died
1807) of Bombay, a long-time direct partner with David Scott
Senior. Meantime, information is cloudy concerning James Scott .
Between 1766-1805, James Scott was an opium trader, and country
trader. It is not known if he was related to David Scott Snr.
James' background is unknown, but Bulley in Bombay Ships
indicates that by by 1805 he traded with Alexander Adamson. James
was still active about Penang by 1805.
(See Anthony Webster re controversy over colony's money management, and re Robert Townsend Farquhar .
Issues here are outlined in H. P. Clodd, Malaya's First British Pioneer: The Life of Francis Light. London, Luzac and Co., 1948., p. 22. This James Scott was an old shipmate and then a business partner of Francis Light of Penang. Light in turn was connected with the 1770s London EICo director, Lawrence Sulivan , the enemy of Clive of India. This Francis Light was father of William Light who is notable for surveying the location of Adelaide.
Associated with William Fairlie of Calcutta from perhaps as
early as 1784 was opium trader and agency house figure, John
Fergusson. Fergusson was from Ayrshire and dealt in cotton and
opium. This firm was known successively as Fairlie, Fergusson and
Co.; Fairlie, Reid and Co.; Fairlie, Gilmore and Co.; finally
Fergusson, Clarke and Co.
W. E. Cheong, Mandarins and Merchants: Jardine Matheson, p. 10. Parker's essay on Scots in India, pp. 199ff in R. A. Cage, Scots Abroad.) S. B. Singh, Agency Houses, p. 9, p. 138.)
From 1784 the Bengal government contracted with John Fergusson and a Capt. Dixon for delivery of $40,000 and $10,000 to Penang in exchange for Patna opium of equal value.
A ships captain (country trader) probably sailing for merchants in the Scott consortium (for Forbes and Co. of Bombay?) is Capt. Robert Eastwick?
On the establishment of the East India Company's "first bank" at Canton:
Other financial matters from 1773: "the first bank at Canton":
There is another difficult matter stemming from about 1773 - the establishment of the English East India Company's "first bank" at Canton. More a kind of financial clearing house, and an innovation for its time, this "bank" could not have succeeded without profits from opium sales in China, which increased after Clive's military successes in India.
Morse notes an unfortunate hiatus for East India Company records 1754-1774, so (for about 1773) he is unsure just when England's Canton supercargoes began issuing Bills on London, but he feels, a few years before 1775.
H. B. Morse, 'The Provision of Funds for the East India Company's trade at Canton during the eighteenth century', Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, Part 2, April 1922., pp. 227-254. [Microfilm 950.05, Dixson Library, UNE]., here, pp. 237-246. This "bank" at Canton needs to be mentioned since by the time the Australian colony was developing commercially, merchants involved were probably using its increasingly sophisticated services.
This was novel financial procedure - the English were finding more effective ways to send money home. The procedures had much to do with finding and dealing in the silver that India and China preferred to British goods or manufactures. In 1775, the Company issued Bills worth 546,820 Spanish dollars to country traders from India; and in 1775 the Supercargoes at Canton were expecting to receive bullion from Manila, about which "foreigners" [unspecified] were glad. The Spanish at Manila, officially, forbade dealing in their silver dollars. But the amounts handled were relatively modest, so Morse thinks the practice was recent. Though it is not clear how procedures developed, this new Company "bank" at Canton, or, the Canton Treasury, obviously handled Spanish dollars from Manila. Something perhaps may have been due to non-English traders - traders flying the flags of European countries more friendly to Spain than England? Some such traders were English, deserting the British flag for the flags of European powers desiring an eastern commercial presence. A few key names after 1800 began trade links with Britain's new colony at Sydney.Questions of opium dealing:
Gull marks 1773 as a turning point for Britain's fresh emphasis on opium dealing. He writes: the year 1773 was the earliest recorded for British merchants importing opium into Canton.
E. M. Gull, British Economic Interest in the Far East. London, Oxford University Press, 1943., p. 13. Immanuel Wallenstein, 'The Great Expansion: the incorporation of vast new zones into the capitalist world economy (1750-1850)', Studies in History, New Series, Vol. 4, Nos. 1&2, January-December 1988., pp. 85-156., here, p. p. 98. Om Prakash, 'Opium monopoly in India and Indonesia in the eighteenth century', Indian Economic and Social History Review, 24, 1, 1987., pp. 63-80. Tan Chung, 'The Britain-China-India trade triangle, 1771-1840', The Indian Economic and Social History Review, Vol. 11, No. 4, December 1974., pp. 411-431., here, p. 417, table 3. See Chung, p. 417, Table 3, regarding a 100 per cent rise in opium production in Bengal between 1771-1775 (the Bengal famine intervening for part of that period, but being commented as such by disturbingly few writers).
Before 1773, the Chinese had taken about 200 chests of opium per year into China; by 1773 the volume increased to 1000 chests per year, and "it provided an acceptable substitute for silver" in balancing the trade with China. But one can only imagine in this case that the Chinese had other sources of silver to allow them a trade balance in opium; and this silver must have come from non-British sources, which places an emphasis on both the supply and role of silver dollars in the economy influenced by Canton's Hong merchants. Wallenstein, meanwhile, notes that "Only the expansion of opium production had NO (my emphasis) direct link with shifts in production elsewhere in the world-economy but was a function rather of the [East India Company's] needs in the China trade." Prakash describes the coerciveness visited upon the peasants producing opium; while it should be remembered, the peasants as land-users later paid revenues which went to the Company as well. (At times, the rate of interest charged on advances to Bengali opium producers might be 24 per cent).
The beginnings of Britain's new "Canton Treasury" should not be judged surefooted, let alone over-confident. The new system had to grow on its own financial merits.Michael Greenberg, British Trade and the Opening of China, 1800-1842. Cambridge University Press, 1951., p. 22.
In 1780 there were only seven "private English" at Canton, that
is, non-East India Company Englishmen. The only one left by 1783
was John Henry Cox, son of a London maker of automatons of which
the Chinese were especially fond; and Cox with Daniel Beale from
1782 began a firm which later became Jardine Matheson.
As is treated in Asiya Siddiqi, `The Business World of Jamsetjee Jejeebhoy', Indian Economic and Social History Review, Vol. XIX, Nos. 3&4, July-December, 1982, pp. 301-304.
An Indian historian, S. B. Singh, emphasising the year 1783, suggests that notable India agency houses took a decade from 1773 to aggregate capital enabling them to become the Indian merchant bankers they became, as the East India Company slowly began to stem the drain of silver to India and turn it to British benefit.S. B. Singh, European Agency Houses in Bengal, 1783-1833, Calcutta, Firma K. L. Mukhopadhyay, 1966.
Thus, the "Canton Treasury" linked disparate Indian ports with London and China, and via the Company at home, with London's short and long-term money markets. This was not achieved of course without the parliamentary influence of "Nabobs" who had returned their fortunes and themselves to England before 1773, who would have known what a boon an institution such as the Canton Treasury could have represented. The year 1773, then, proposed watersheds for financial sophistication in Britain's eastern trade. David Scott Senior, however, was a different kind of Nabob returning home from India in 1786, since he worked to 1799 and later to do much to reorganise Britain's eastern trade, including the opium trade, in way which has taken a long time to surface into history as far as Scott's "individual work" is concerned.
But even before discussion of the establishment from the early
1770s of the East India Company's "first bank at Canton", and its
probable role in the sophistication of the opium trade, arises
another matter also pertinent to the opium trade. This is the war
between Clive of India, and chairman of the East India Company in
London, Laurence Sulivan.
Here, see Nirad C. Chaudhuri, Clive of India: A Political and Psychological Essay. London, Barrie and Jenkins, 1975. Also, Edward Thompson and G. T. Garratt, Rise and Fulfilment of British Rule in India. Allahabad, Central Book Depot, 1969. (Text and bibliography on Clive of India and Laurence Sulivan as a non-Imperialist free trader.); Henry Dodwell, Dupleix and Clive: The Beginnings of Empire. London, Frank Cass and Co., 1967.; John Watney, Clive of India. Saxon House, Hants, England, D. C. Heath Ltd., 1974. See also Norman Baker, 'Changing attitudes towards government in eighteenth century Britain', in Anne Whiteman, J. S. Bromley and P. G. M. Dickson, (Eds.), Statesmen, Scholars and Merchants: Essays in Eighteenth Century History presented to Dame Lucy Sutherland. Oxford at the Clarendon Press, 1973. See also Lucy Stewart Sutherland, The City of London and Opposition to Government: A Study in the Rise of Metropolitan Radicalism. London, Athlone Press, 1958.
Here, Sulivan poses a mystery apart from the mysteries of Clive's military successes in India, the sources of his fortune, and Clive's unusual personality.
Once established with his fortune in India, Clive planned to
return home to begin a commercial-political career in London. He
met great resistance from the then Company deputy-chairman (under
chairman Payne), and chairman succeeding Payne, Laurence
Sulivan. Clive and Sulivan, and their camp followers, conducted
a famous feud. The oddity however is that Sulivan is known only for
this feud, he is not known in British commercial history as any
sort of businessman in his own right. The problem needs to be
considered in some detail. In brief, the squabble was over whether,
following Clive's military successes against the faltering,
post-Mogul powers, and the French under Dupleix, the English East
India Company would engage in more formal sorts of control in India
(a governmental role), or remain as more a non-Imperialist trader.
Sulivan was of the non-Imperialist position, a position which lost
in political force, with the result that the free British traders
in the British East, "the country traders", worked in zones that
were officially "de-controlled". Which is partly how the British
opium trade became so lucrative, conducted in often-clandestine and
Here, and also on Penang, see also Dianne Lewis, `The Growth of the Country Trade to the Straits of Malacca, 1760-1777', Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. 43, Part 2, 1970., pp. 114-129.
This was the system of Dual Control, on which Lord Curzon once commented, "Had a Committee been assembled from the padded chambers of Bedlam, they could hardly have devised anything more extravagant in its madness or more mischievous in its operation"...
Laurence Sulivan, (1713-1786), was of Cork, Ireland, later of London. He married to Elizabeth Owen, and had a son Stephen (later an opium dealer). Laurence by 1740 was an aide to the governor of Bengal. In 1753 Laurence returned to England to became am East India Company director 1755-1786. He was Company chairman in 1758-1759, 1760-62 and 1781-1782. Sulivan would have known that from 1733, control of Company affairs at Canton had been vested in a select committee of supercargoes resident in Macao and migrating annually to Canton during the trading season. They had orders to oversee the actions of English country traders. Their problem was: what to sell to China?
The Chinese traders were paid in silver, usually Spanish dollars (which were possibly part-supplied from Manila in the Philippines via the annual Spanish treasure galleon from Acapulco in Mexico, to Manila?). The Chinese were interested in Indian cotton, pepper and opium, paid in silver, but the Chinese forbade the export of silver.
So the East India Company simply exchanged silver for bills payable in London. And the English country traders (not tied to Company regulations) carried opium since Company regulations forbade Company ships to carry opium, probably by about the 1760s. It does appear, that the reason Sulivan is so little-known in his own right is that he was early involved in the opium trade, and that this has been hidden.
Rather confusingly, one of the few sets of consistent clues
about Sulivan's business career is lodged in Clodd's book on
Francis Light, the Britisher credited with establishing Penang as a
new port. (Light's son William is later noted for surveying the
site of Adelaide, South Australia).
H. P. Clodd, Malaya's First British Pioneer: The Life of Francis Light. London, Luzac and Co., 1948. Geoffrey Dutton, Founder of a City: The Life of Colonel William Light, First Surveyor-General of the Colony of South Australia, Founder of Adelaide, 1786-1839. Melbourne, Cheshire, 1960. See also: Nicholas Tarling, Imperial Britain in South-East Asia. OUP, 1975. Nicholas Tarling, Anglo-Dutch Rivalry in the Malay World, 1780-1824. St Lucia, Cambridge University Press/University of Queensland Press, 1962. Nicholas Tarling, 'Pirates and convicts: British interest in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the mid-nineteenth century,', Chapter 10 of Nicholas Tarling, Imperial Britain in South-East Asia. Kuala Lumpur, Oxford University Press, 1975. See Chapter 3, ',The Prince of Merchants and the Lion City'. [On John Palmer, "Prince of Merchants"].
Francis Light, it seems, was a sometime-associate of an often-noted-yet-little-known India firm, Jourdain, Sulivan and De Souza. The name Jourdain can be found in East India Company listings from about 1610, early in the company's history, but there seems no genealogical connection between that early name, and the name found in Light's time. The name De Souza was a relatively common Portuguese trader name of the period, but nothing genealogically useful arises here. The name Sulivan seems to be that of Laurence Sulivan here. Their firm operated on the eastern coasts of India, not the western.
Clodd writes, that soon after arriving in India, Francis Light was given command of an Indian-owned country ship belonging to the Madras firm of Jourdain, Sulivan and De Souza, who wanted to create agencies at Acheen and Kedah. Light was first sent to Acheen as joint agent with one Mr Harrop... and it appears, that off and on, Sulivan's firm, often against the odds posed by East India Company attitudes, promoted the notion of a new port being established about the Malayan coast - with the final result being Penang. From his earliest contacts, Light got on well with the Muslim governments of Kedah, partly as he offered military aid with Sepoys.Sir Richard Winstedt has written re an implied promise of military aid: "The acquisition of Penang is the blackest spot on the British record in Malaysia,"
Arasaratnam has commented on the enormous post-1750 (or
post-Clive) growth in private English trade from India to
South-East Asia from the 1750s onwards, interests which in 1786
produced the search for a British settlement on the Malay Peninsula
which resulted in founding of Penang.
S. Arasaratnam, Trade and Political Dominion in South India, 1750-1790: Changing British-Indian Relationships', Modern Asian Studies, 13, 1, 1979, pp. 19-40, p. 37. For information on the settlement of Penang: C. M. Turnbull, The Straits Settlements, 1826-1867: Indian Presidency to Crown Colony. London, Athlone Press, 1972.
Further to Penang, see John Bastin, 'A Historical Sketch of the circumstances which led to the settlement of Penang and of the trade to the eastward previous to, and since that period', Journal of the Malayan Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XXXII, Part 1, 1959., pp. 5ff. [See also, with the same article, in the same journal, M. Stubbs Brown, Appendix A, The Failure of Penang as a naval base and shipbuilding centre. An associated oft-cited title is H. B. Morse, The Chronicles of the East India Company trading to China. Oxford, 1929.; See
D. J. M. Tate, The Making of Modern South-East Asia. Vol. 2. The Western Impact: Economic and Social Change. Kuala Lumpur, Oxford University Press, 1971-1979., Vol. 1, p. 149ff, pp. 162-165, on F. Light see pp. 170-177, 232, 245. British acquire Penang, pp. 41, pp. 95-99.
Imperialist propaganda of the 1930s variety might put it
"Malaya is one of the most striking examples of the administrative genius of the British people in moulding and bringing a region where anarchy and rapine had prevailed for centuries to conditions of peace and prosperity..." The area would have fallen to the Dutch if Francis Light made not his initiatives.
See A. Francis Steuart, 'The Founders of Penang and Adelaide, 1901', The Journal of the Indian Archipelago, Notices of Penang, edited by J. R. Logan.
Francis Light is mentioned in the Malayan Branch of the Royal
Asiatic Society, 1925, including an article by Mr. L. A. Mills
writing on British Malaya, 1824-1867, with a tribute to Francis
Royal Asiatic Society also published in 1894, 'A Memoir of Capt. Francis Light by A. M. Skinner, CMG; in 1923, Early Days in Penang by Rev. Keppel Garnier; in 1929, A Contribution to the Early History of Penang by Mr. F. G. Stevens; in 1935, The History of Malaya by Sir Richard Winstedt. Cf, Sir Frank Swettenahm, British Malaya. London, 1906. See also: T. H. Reid in The Malayan Peninsula, with material on Light's first attempt in 1771 to secure Penang. Clodd meantime studied the correspondence in the India Record Office.
Francis Light (1740-1794) the founder of Penang, merchant in cotton, possibly also dealing in opium, was of Woodbridge, Suffolk, illegitimate son of Squire William Negus and his lover, Mary Light. (Francis' son William was probably son of Francis' lover, Martina Rozells.)
A critic of Light's role was a later governor of Penang, Sir
Robert Townsend Farquhar, (1776-1830), Bart. Son of Dr Sir Walter
Farquhar, Bart, and Anne Stephenson. (Sir Robert married Maria
Frances Geslip Latour.) Sir Robert was once in charge of an
expedition to attack Amboyna - East Indies. He was also an uncle of
the opium trader later noted here, Walter Stephenson Davidson, of
Dent and Co. Sir Robert became an East India Company director about
1807; he once suggested that Britain abandon its convict colony at
Botany Bay and go for Madagascar.
For criticism of Light, see Anthony Webster, `British Expansion in South-East Asia and the role of Robert Farquhar, Lieutenant-Governor of Penang, 1804-1805', The Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History, 1993-1994. Robert is not seen as a relative of William Farquhar, British commandant at Malacca about 1803. Clodd, Francis Light, pp. 140-148. Burke's Landed Gentry for Parker formerly Wells of Houghton Lodge. Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Farquhar. Sir Robert's own DNB. See also Anthony Webster, 'The Political Economy of Trade Liberalization: The East India Company Charter Act of 1813', Economic History Review, Series 2, XL,III, 3, 1990., pp. 404-419. (Also especially valuable re the unusual attitude held by Barings about India trade.)
Francis Light entered the navy in 1759, as midshipman, later
moving into East India Company service. He got command of a country
ship for Jourdain, Sulivan and De Souza (a firm never otherwise
described or outlined). Shortly, Light and a Mr Harrop went to
Achin, unsuccessfully, to make a depot. Light had a fort at Kedah
harbour by 1771, and by then he was writing to Jourdain, Sulivan
and De Souza about bringing in Sepoys, but they as country traders
could engage in no military activity; and Warren Hastings
could not assist either. An associate of Light's at Kedah was Hon.
Edward Monkton, and his mission also was a failure. Light however
teamed up with "his friend", James Scott. (And as noted above, it
is not known if this James Scott was related to the reorganiser
from 1799 of the opium trade, David Scott Senior).
Monckton was the fifth son of Viscount Galway, and he'd joined the Madras civil service in 1762. Monckton was a partner of Madras free merchant George Smith, who wanted tin for China ships, Monckton married the daughter of the governor, Lord Pigot, in 1776. He died in 1832. See H. D. Love, Vestiges of Old Madras, 1640-1800. London, 1913.
In Dutton's book, p. xiii, p. 3, Francis Light is a "tough, practical sailor and trader", ... "of the true character of the empire-builder, in which personal interest and patriotism, an eye for profits and 'vision', love of adventure and honest administrative ability are so astonishingly mixed..."
Meanwhile, the definitive version of the Sulivan-Clive fight is
said to be in work by Sutherland. More is known about the backers
of Clive than of Sulivan.
Lucy Stewart Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics. Oxford at the Clarendon Press, 1952. On personages, see also: Sir Lewis Namier and John Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790. [Two Vols.] London, Parliament Trust of Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1964., for notes on various personages. Sir Lewis Namier, The Structure of Politics at the Accession of George III. Edn 2. London, Macmillan, 1957. Lewis Namier, England in the Age of the American Revolution. London, Macmillan. Edition 2., 1961.
Clive at seventeen became a writer (lawyer) for the East India
Company in the early 1740s, but turned to the military. He took
part in the siege of Pondicherry in October 1748. Dodwell in his
book on Dupleix and Clive suggests that Clive may have been
addicted to opium to end of his life, before he suicided.
Certainly, Clive's story at times seems surrounded by men
interested in opium trading: the British after all removed the
Dutch from opium trade pathways. Clive had money affairs in 1753
with Walsh, Vansittart and Maskelyne. By 1754 he'd become a Whig MP
for Sandwich for a rotten borough in Cornwall, but he was unseated
by 23 March 23, 1755, so in April he left for India again. Various
soldiers of Clive's time "doing well" included: Eyre Coote, Richard
Smith, Thomas Rumbold, Richard Barwell, Nathaniel Middleton and
Paul Benfield a speculator in debts of the Nawbab of Arcot.
References include: Entry, Clive of India, Encyclopedia Britannica.
Some of the beneficiaries of Clive's successes in India included: Clive's secretary Mr Watts got £117,000, Major Kirkpatrick got £60,750, Mr Walsh got £56,250, lesser figures got less. Gov. Vansittart was given £58,333. Mr Howell got £30,937. Confusingly, it is said, a sum of £7000 from India for Clive went through Laurence Sulivan. All up, about 125 nabobs got an average of £145,000 each. Kindleberger says Clive remitted £190,280,000 home between 1755 and 1759, with £210,000 coming on the enthronement of Meer Jaffier. Plus £27,000 per year from a jagir. Commenting on matters after the Battle of Plassey, Charles P. Kindleberger, A Financial History of Western Europe. London, George Allen and Unwin, 1984., p. 235.
Item re 1766: We find that by 1776, the French appointed a
consul to Canton, and three seasons later a Scot, John Reid, later
an opium trader, who had worked for the English East Company in
Bengal. Reid became consul for Austria, or, his Imperial Majesty of
Vienna. Mr [Laurence] Sulivan was closely examined by a committee
on papers brought to London by John Shakespear, who had been trying
to speak truth about the doings of the Supreme Court (in India) and
at the same time "trying to be favourable" to the
governor-general's plan (there was at the time no governor-general
in India) in placing provincial courts under the Chief Justice.
On Sulivan, see Clodd, Francis Light, p. 6. Valentine, British Establishment 1760-1784, p. 842 of Vol. 2. See Coates, Macao, from p. 62. See Lt-Col Shakespear on Shakespear of Shadwell from pp. 42 in Chapter, India, 1767-1781, when in 1781 one John Shakespear brought papers from India, and had to speak on matters Indian, including Warren Hastings, and Sir Elijah Impey.
Once this John Shakespear was examined, his connections with
India ceased (?!) but his son Arthur later observed that the Prince
of Wales had backed John Shakespear as an aspiring EICo director,
but Shakespear lost. (The reporter here, a descendant, Lt-Col
Shakespear, does not go into the conflict between Clive of India
and Sulivan.) Later, Lord Moira as governor-general in India wanted
John Shakespear to go out to India again for a situation in Bengal
worth £10,000 per year, but Lord Liverpool as prime minister
insisted on Home Govt's right to make that particular
See Lt. Col Shakespear, p. 46. Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790. Vol. 3, p. 509.
We can also consider a friend of Clive, Henry Vansittart
(1732-1770 died at sea), governor of Bengal 1760-1764, or of Ormond
Street, London, and also a member of the "Hell-fire club". Son of
Arthur Vansittart and Martha Stonhouse. He married Emilia (Amelia)
Morse. He had a place at Foxley. He by 1756 was a member of the
Council at Madras, and a Company director 1769 till death. His
DNB entry claims he has been unfairly treated by writers on
India re Clive and abuses in Bengal. He was an early friend of
Robert Clive at Fort St George.
I. B. Watson, Foundation, p. 115. Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 3, p. 575. Valentine, British Establishment 1760-1784, Vol. 2, pp. 884-885. Burke's Landed Gentry for Thorntons. His own entry in DNB.
A relative... Joseph Walsh governor of Fort St George, married
to Elizabeth Maskelyne. Related to the family of Clive of
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 3, p. 602. His son's entry, Valentine, British Establishment 1760-1784, p. 903.
One of Clive backers/agents was John Walsh (1726-1795), MP, son of East India Company governor Joseph Walsh (above) of Fort St George and Elizabeth Maskelyne. He was a cousin of Clive. Walsh was a merchant in India, secretary to Clive and paymaster to Madras troops in 1757-1759. Walsh came home with a fortune, and laid Clive's plans before Pitt. He was elected MP in 1761, and joined the Royal Society. A became a trustee of Clive's will, and dealt with George Clive re money at Gosling's bank. (John's parents had died and he was brought up by his uncle Capt. John Walsh of EICo marine service.) John, Clive's cousin, got a fortune of £56,250 after the fall of Siraja-duala. In London he promoted the ideas of Chase Price to Clive of India, and seems to have had a major debt to Robert Mackintosh(?). John Walsh had a secretary, D. Davies.
Namier/Brooke indicate that Clive's own money was remitted home
to his father in the names of Sir Edward Clive, Richard Clive,
William Belchier, and William Smyth King.
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 1, p. 224. See also Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Powis. Some of Clive's descendants are listed in the DNB entry for Earl1 Plymouth. See also GEC, Peerage, Saint Germans, p. 311; Powis, p. 652.
Backed Clive. William Belchier Banker (died 1772), MP,
married Jane Ironside wife1 and Frances Thomson. He bankrupts in
1760. He received much money remitted by Clive, but became a failed
banker with Belchier and Ironside, later with How. He was later of
34 Nicholas Lane.
Namier, Structure of Politics, p. 55.
Secretary of Clive, Henry Strachey,
He is secretary to Clive in N. Chaudhuri, Clive, p. 433.
Clive's main opponents in Parliament were Burgoyne and Thurlow, his chief supporters were Wedderburn, whom Clive brought in from the pocket borough of Bishop's Castle, Conway and Lord George Germaine. By 1763, some East India Company figures backing Clive were: J. Boyd, G. Rooke, W. Thomson, Richard Smith. Another of Clive's bankers was Thomas Devon of Child's bank, who later abandoned Clive.
Backed Clive, Thomas Devon, banker at Child's Bank,
active about 1762, backed Clive but then abandoned him.
Lucy Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics, p. 118ff.
Also amongst Clive's backers was banker Joseph Salvador who had
Treasury connections. A Scots family, John Johnstone and his
brother, governor George Johnstone, plus their uncle, Lord Elibank.
(This John Johnstone is said to have survived the Black Hole of
Calcutta, and took £300,000 out of India; he had many brothers,
including Sir James Johnstone of Westerhall, and William Johnstone
who married an heiress of a Pultney fortune and changed his
Lucy Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics, p. 117. Valentine, British Establishment 1760-1784, re Robert Barker (1732-1789) assisting Clive at Plassey and Barker's later trip in 1762 to the Philippines.
Some personages: The father of Clive of India was lawyer and MP
of Salop, Richard Clive (1693-1771), the son of George Clive and
Elizabeth Amphlett. He married Rebecca Gaskell. He became a
commissioner of bankrupts, and was first cousin of MP Sir Edward
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790. Vol. 3, p. 224. Namier, Structure of Politics, table, p. 245.
Item: Margaret Maskelyne (1736-1816), daughter of Edmund
Maskelyne of Purton and Elizabeth Booth. She married Robert Clive
See Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, variously. Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, for Powis. GEC, Peerage, Saint Germans, p. 311; Powis, p. 652.
A Clive relative/ally was banker with Goslings and MP George
Clive, active 1779, son of Rev. Benjamin Clive and Susannah Floyer.
He married Sydney Bolton. He had gone to India in 1755, and by 1757
was an army agent getting a fortune of £15-20,000. He returned home
in 1760 and joined Gosling's bank as a partner, till his death. He
engaged in "splitting" of East India Company stock for Clive. He
also dealt with money coming home from the names Carnac, John Call,
Turner, Swinton, Gregory and Dr Fullarton, who promised to do
business with Gosling. This man dealt closely with John Walsh and
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 223. Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Clive of Whitfield.
Bankers: Clive of India used the bank Cliffe, Walpole and
Clarke, and also Sir Francis Gosling here and Robert Gosling. Clive
also used Thomas Lane around 1762-1763. Partner of George Clive,
Fleet Street banker Sir Francis Gosling (1702-1768) was son of
Robert Gosling and Elizabeth Douce.
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 223. Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics. Burke's Landed Gentry for Gosling of Thrimley House formerly of Hassobury.
Backed Clive. Charles Chase Price (1731-1777), MP, son of
John Price and Elizabeth Chace wife2 He married Susan Glanville.
His daughter married Bamber Gascoyne Jnr. He dealt with associates
of Clive of India.
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790 Vol. 3, p. 326. He is MP for Leominster. Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Green-Price.
Backed Clive, maybeWarren Hastings (1732-1818),
governor-general of India, impeached, son of Rev. Peniston Hastings
and Hester Warren. Hastings sailed on ship London for
Calcutta as a writer in January 1750, having thrown aside a
promising academic start. (Hastings' s military secretary was
General William Palmer, whose descendant Sophia married Sydney
trader Robert Campbell.) Marshall says Hastings' fortune was about
£50,000. Warren's sister Anne married London Attorney John Woodman.
Sir Francis Sykes Bart 1, (c1730-1804) looked after Hastings'
affairs in England. Hastings like Clive banked with Goslings of
Fleet Street. Hastings once dealt with free merchant Capt John
Price (respondentia re three ships Calcutta-to-China. (See
P. J. Marshall, co-dealers, p. 296.) Hastings's London agent was
once Lauchlan Macleane who got in trouble, drowned on his way home
to England, the Macleane problem caused an undescribed crisis in
the affairs of Laurence Sulivan (died 1786). Here, Richard Barwell
a soldier done well from Clive's affairs in India, helped out
Sulivan, who died £23,000. Sulivan;s son Stephen (1742-1821) gained
a fortune in India with Hastings' help, as an opium contractor,
Judge-Advocate General and agent victualler for the British
Squadron 1781-1785. A partner in a business firm with Hastings was
one T. Hancock. Who's Who in Boswell, p. 154. H. P. Clodd on
Francis Light, p. 7.
See P. J. Marshall, 'The Personal Fortune of Warren Hastings', Economic History Review, Series 2, Vol. XVII, Nos. 1, 2, 3, 1964-1965., pp. 284-300. See also Foster, John Company, pp. 214ff.
Backed Clive. A confusing story unfolds. East India
Company speculator Lauchlan Maclean (1727-1778), MP, once governor
of St. Vincent, 1766, under secretary of state, 1766-1768,
collector at Philadelphia, 1772, comptroller of army accounts in
Bengal 1772-1773, commissary of musters Bengal 1773. He practised
medicine early in Philadelphia, bought much land in the West
Indies, was an intimate of radical John Wilkes. Maclean took in
with the 1766 speculative boom in EICo stock, in Paris, Amsterdam
and London markets, involving Lord Verney and William Burke, dealt
with Sir George Colebrooke, and began to manage the EICo affairs of
the Sulivan faction. He suffered badly in the 1769 collapse of EICo
stock, went down by £90,000 and was totally ruined. By 1775 he was
a paid agent of Warren Hastings and the Nawbab of Arcot.
He may be the Lauchlan, not Donald, see Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 3, p. 93.
Backed CliveThomas MP Gov Madras Rumbold (1736-1791),
Sir, Bart1, son of William Rumbold of EICo and Navy, and Dorothy
Cheney. Rumbold had two wives, Joanna Law wife2 and Frances
Berriman wife1. He backs Clive's faction. His family had strong
EICo links. Gov Madras.
He is noted variously in Trotter's biography of Warren Hastings. Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 3, p. 381. GEC, Peerage, Rivers, p. 32. Stenton, British Parlt, Vol. 2, p. 335. His own DNB entry.
Backed Sulivan. EICo figure and MP Sir Robert Fletcher
(1738-1776), son of Robert Fletcher and Elizabeth Lyon, he married
Anne Pybus. He is in the "batta mutiny" against Clive. He imprisons
Lord Pigot. He is an ally of Sulivan against Clive in India.
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 440. Item in Indian Dict Biography per Patricia Iseke.
Sir John Call FRS MP 1786 (1732-1801), of Tiverton, Devon, son
of John Call of Cornwall and Jane Mill. He married Philadelphia
Battie and went blind in 1795. He was an "armchair colonist" with
views given to government on proposals for a convict colony at New
Holland. Call's later expressed views on the British East seem an
outgrowth of the Clive-Sulivan division of opinion.
See also, David Mackay, 'Banished to Botany Bay: the fate of the relentless historian', a response', pp. 214-216, a riposte to Alan Frost, 'Historians, handling documents, transgressions and transportable offences', Australian Historical Studies, Vol. 25, April 1992-October 1993., pp. 192-213, and p . 215. GEC, Peerage, Aylmer, p. 370; Castle Stewart, p. 98. Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 176. Valentine, British Establishment 1760-1784. The definitive work on the debts of the Nawbab of Arcot is J. D. Gurney, The Debts of the Nawbab of Arcot, 1763-1776., Oxford Ph.D, 1968. See Frost, Convicts and Empire, on Call, pp. 21ff, and p. 203, re the Nawbab of Arcot and Call's financial dealings with the Nawbab. Call knew Paul Benfield, one of the major creditors of the Nawbab of Arcot. H. Richmond, The Navy in India, 1763-1783. London, Ernest Benn, 1931. (Call had a cousin Thomas in Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Brooke of Brookeborough who marries into that line. His youngest daughter is in Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Mackinnon. In 1784 Call became a partner in bank Pybus and Co of 148 New Bond St. He had been engineer at Madras, worked closely with Clive and amassed a fortune. Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 176.
Sulivan for still-unclear reasons had been fractious before
Clive's Indian successes became conspicuous. Sulivan helped
organize a revolt of East India Company proprietors in 1758 and
then waged constant electoral warfare on Clive in the 1760s.
Sulivan wanted reform which curbed the Court of Directors'
On the power struggle, see Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics, p. 46.
(Bowen, Revenue and Reform, p. 46 cites (Note 46)
Sulivan's paper to Lord Shelburne on the condition of the East
India Company and an outline plan for reform, 1767, Clements
Library, Landsdowne MSS 90, f.84. On Sulivan's views on the Company
and re Bengal providing £400,000 per year to government, see Bowen,
Revenue and Reform, pp. 64-68.)
On Laurence Sulivan see H. V. Bowen, Revenue and Reform: the Indian problem in British Politics, 1757-1773. Sydney, CUP, 1991. see p. 33 re merchant names for a list of leading speakers on the EICo and Indian issues. H. V. Bowen p. 31ff, cf, H. V. Bowen, '"Dipped in the Traffic": East India Stockholders in the House of Commons, 1768-1774', Parliamentary History, 5, 1986, pp. 40-42.
The definitive account of the Clive-Sulivan power struggle is to
be found in Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth
Century Politics, Chs. 4-5, p. 31. Bowen's book, it is said, p.
40 cites A  List of the names of all the Proprietors of East
India Stock [9 Mar 1773]. One senior East India promoter of Clive
was Sir George Colebrooke in 1766 and later.
See also J. M. Holzman, The Nabobs in England, 1760-1815: A Study of the Returned Anglo-Indian. New York, 1926; H. C. Bowen, Revenue and Reform, pp. 41ff. For 1772-1773, while the East India Company built up its tea inventory problems which helped provoke the Boston Tea Party, the Company's chairman of directors was Sir George Colebrooke; p. 46, p. 54. See Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics, citing her own title 'Sir George Colebrooke's World Corner in Alum', Economic History, supplement, Economic Journal, Feb. 1936., pp. 237ff.
Backed Clive Sir George Colebrooke (1729-1809), Bart2 Gov
EICo, army/government contractor, Whig, son of James Colebrooke of
London and Mary Hudson. His son is the Sanskrit scholar noted in
Encyclopedia Britannica. He is a government contractor in
Namier, Structure of Politics, p. 440, notes. In 1762 he had
a contract to remit money to forces in America, one contract with
Thomlinson, Nesbit and Hanbury. By 1766 he was a speculator in EICo
stocks, and projected the Vandalia settlement in America (Ohio
Valley). In 1767 he was elected a director of EICo, in 1768,
chairman in 1769-1772. Colebrooke backed Clive and knew the
Johnstone family who assisted Clive; he was in a coalition with
Sulivan as engineered by Lord North (?), but was left a creditor of
Lachlan Macleane and Mary Barwell sister of Richard. He was
semi-partner with Sir James Cockburn Bart8 and an excessive
speculator on the stock market in 1772 at time of the Fordyce
crash. In 1771 he lost a speculation of £170,000 in hemp and he'd
wanted to corner the world supply of alum. He entered his father's
bank, and was left in sole control by deaths. Colebrooke became
ostentatiously wealthy, and wanted to buy land in Scotland. His
wife had plantations in Antigua and he had Grenada land worth
£50,000. Colebrooke helped build the first London stock exchange in
1772 and speculated ambitiously in raw materials. His bank closed
in 1773 and he bankrupted . Colebrooke was Company chairman in 1772
when deputy-chairman was Laurence Sulivan.
See Lucy Sutherland, EICo in C18th Politics fix The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics. Valentine, British Establishment 1760-1784, p. 191. Cf., Lucy Sutherland, 'Sir George Colebrooke's world corner in alum, 1771-1773', Economic History, 3, 1936, pp. 237-257, cited in See J. Price on Joshua Johnson in London, p. 163, Note 39. His daughter in Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Grant of Dalvey. GEC, Peerage, Tankerville, p. 634. Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 235. VIP see R. B. Sheridan on 'colonial gentry of Antigua', p. 349.
Backed Sulivan Mary Barwell, active around 1770, daughter
of EICo governor William Barwell and Elizabeth Pierce. Mary is the
only woman known to have organised an EICo voting interest in the
post-1764 Clive vs Sulivan conflict. Barwell family supported
Colebrooke and L. Sulivan.
Hodson Lists. Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 60. Sutherland, The East India Company in Eighteenth Century Politics, p. 244.
Backed Clive, MP Robert Jones, EICo director, active
about 1774, of Clement's Lane Lombard St, London and Babraham,
Cambs. Director EICo 1754-1758, 1765-1769. He began as a Lisbon
trader, and in 1743 went into partnership with Thomas Tierney
father of George Tierney later MP. Jones acted politically for
Sandwich. Jones's brother John became receiver land tax of
Berkshire. Robert had a victualling contract for troops in Nova
Scotia 1770 till his death. He loaned heavily to government, some
£100,000 in his jobbing account at the bank, 1760-1763. He lost his
EICo seat in the Clive/Sulivan dispute where he supported Clive. He
remained unhappy his daughter had married Adeane, so he made his
grandson Robert Jones his chief heir.
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 691. Burke's Landed Gentry for Adeane of Babraham.
Backs Sulivan Henry Boulton (1709-1773), governor EICo
Crabb, son of father unknown and a widow, Hester Crabb. He at first
followed Laurence Sulivan but moved to the Clive camp. He became
EICo paymaster various, director, EICo 1753-56, 58-61, 63-65,
67-70, 1772 till death, deputy-chairman 1764-65, chairman 1765-66,
1768-69, (around the time of Sulivan's pushing and shoving) and
1773 till death,. He added the name Boulton in 1746. He became
known as Henry Crabb, later Henry Crabb Boulton, about 1754.
Namier/Brooke, The History of Parliament: The House of Commons, 1754-1790, Vol. 2, p. 267. Sutherland, William Braund, p. 117.
And lastly, ignoring the Clive-Sulivan dispute? EICo governor
John Payne (1708-1764) of No. 9 Lothbury. He took his money into a
new bank just before his death, Smiths Payne Smiths. His parents
are unknown, wife unknown, but he had a brother Edward. The
Smith-Payne bank was "probably" a founder of the London Bankers
Clearing House in 1770, with fair sums circulated there in 1777 by
Smith and Payne. After John Payne died the family firm moved to 18
Lombard Street, a site which was purchased in 1782 by Phoenix Fire
Insurance Co. Smith Payne and Smith as bank ended at No 1 Lombard
Street. One author notes that Payne probably "presided" over the
value of the achievements of Clive of India at the time he was
chairman. No. 9 Lothbury in those days abutted onto Coleman Street.
The family firm of linen drapers by 1758 had a capital of
See Burke's Landed Gentry for Lane formerly Pickard-Cambridge of Poxwell. He has a brother, Edward: see Lucy Sutherland, A London Merchant, 1695-1774: William Braund. London, OUP, 1933., p. 117. Leighton, Smiths the Bankers, pp. 68ff; the Smith-Payne bank opened with a capital of 16,963/8/71/2d. p. 53.
In 1767, Sulivan warned that the East India Company directors
might be tempted to extend their conquests to China (an easy
acquisition?) at a time when London was concerned - November 1767 -
about how much specie was going to China. There was also the matter
of the disastrous Bengal famine, caused by drought and crop
failures (and British mismanagement of resources) of 1768 and 1769,
which cost the lives of about one third of Bengal's population.
Bowen, Revenue and Reform, pp. 95-119. The resulting trade losses from the Bengal famine incidentally are not discussed by British writers, but drastic statistical slides are obvious in Dutch figures on Bengal's trade for the period of the famine! Bowen (p. 179) writes, Sulivan declared the native population of Bengal would never part with their money except by compulsion.
Possibly, Sulivan's unclear motives had something to do with Light's activities, as follows:
From October 1760 to 1761 about four British country ships traded with Selangor. Two country ships were Cornish and Neptune, seized by the Dutch for importing opium to Selangor, leading Calcutta to protest. A first recorded visit to the Riau capital of the Johore Empire was in 1765 when Plassey Capt. Austin called there; trade well developed by 1771.
In 1766, Jourdain of the firm Jordain, Sulivan and De Souza (JSDS) sent Indian Trader to Achin, their man was Gowan (sic) Harrop, factor for Madras at Achin, who used bills of exchange to be drawn on Jourdain; JSDS sent Light to Achin to Kedah in 1770 and got tin in their own ships. By early 1772 they had sent goods worth nearly £120,000 to Achin, most to go to Canton. (Bugis had attacked Kedah in 1771.)
Another East India Company man to view Kedah and its prospects was Charles Desvoeux. Also, Giles Holloway was turned away by the Sultan of Kedah in late 1771. In November 1780 Eyre Coote, the commander-in-chief in India, warned London the French in Pondicherry were storing provisions and raising troops to fight Hyder Ali, who had invaded the Carnatic. So, Lawrence Sulivan and William James of the Company directors approached Lord Hillsborough, secretary of state for the northern department, in November 1781 with a proposal to destroy Pondicherry altogether. Britain also wanted to seize the French settlement in the Seychelles Islands and to establish a British fort at Achin, with other settlements being made at Nicobar and Andaman Islands.
Sulivan also feared that Bencoolen would fall to the Dutch,
taking pepper. He had heard rumours that William Bolts would work
for "Austria" and open an Austrian settlement in the Nicobars and
was looking at Achin.
On Bolts, see Frost, Convicts and Empire, p. 47.
Hillsborough sent Sulivan's and James' views to George III and then circularised India on the need to establish a British base at Achin. In September 1782, Henry Botham of the East India Company was sent to open a British fort at Achin. Achin would only accept a resident agent, and this became I. Y. Kinloch early in 1784, but he was in Achin only a short time.
Forrest scouted for the Company and had a view to forestall the French, though he mostly wanted to avoid unwelcome entanglements with anyone. Riau was taken by the Dutch in 1784.
In 1782 Betsy a Company ship had gone to Riau to sell opium, to meet "a loan raised by Warren Hastings for the Canton remittance". The French captured Betsy with Dutch help, and this raised a war with Raja Haji and the Dutch East India Company.
Here, a good friend of Light and Scott was Thomas Mercer, who
had been shipping bullion to Canton. In 1772, Mercer was captain of
a country ship Generous Friend and in 1774 he was on
Crescent. Mercer was in Kedah in January 1772 and James
Scott was in touch with him at Selangor in 1783. Crescent
sailed to Canton. By then, James Scott was "a famous country
trader" and had once met Forrest out scouting. Scott had begun
promoting the establishment of Penang from 1780.
E. H. Pritchard, The Crucial Years of Early Anglo-Chinese Relations, 1750-1800. Pullman, Washington, 1936. David E. Owen, British Opium Policy in China and India. New Haven, 1934. D. K. Bassett, British Trade and Policy in Indonesia and Malaysia in the late Eighteenth Century, Ch. 3 of British Commercial and strategic interest in the Malay Peninsula during the late eighteenth century. Inter Documentation Company, Zug, Switzerland., Aug 1971., pp. 50-71.
Sulivan's firm with all of this still seems to have gotten its
way concerning the establishment of Penang - and the taste of "free
merchant opium" seems to remain.
Horsea Ballon Morse, 'The Provision of Funds for the East India Company's Trade at Canton during the Eighteenth Century', Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, 1922, April, Part 2. (Rare); Om Prakash, Opium Monopoly in India and Indonesia in the C18th.; Earl Hamilton Pritchard, 'The Struggle for Control of the China Trade during the Eighteenth Century', Pacific Historical Review, Vol. III, 1934., pp. 280-295. Conrad E. Wright, Merchants and Mandarins: New York and the Early China Trade, in New York and the China Trade. New York, New York Historical Society, 1984., pp. 17-54.;
Assistants to Light's plans for Penang were James Scott, Andrew
Ross, Sir Archibald Campbell and Alexander Dalrymple.
H. P. Clodd, Malay's First British Pioneer: The Life of Francis Light. London, Luzac and Co., 1948., pp. 50-54. J. C. Pasqual, An Historical Memoir of Penang, Penang Gazette, May 25, 1922, cited in Clodd, Life of Francis Light, p. 46.
One Walter Pigou remained as Light's "writer" from the
establishment of Penang. Light's friends and agents by 1793 were
Fairlie and Co. of Calcutta, Light's executors along with George
Doughty (who had a sister Abigail). Light, who died of malaria,
named as his executor in India, Fairlie and Co., (William Fairlie
of Calcutta, who retired in 1810 with a fortune of about £300,000.)
Light for the education of his son William sent money to John
Ferguson and Co. In England, James Scott died 1810 with a fortune
of £203,000 but contract debts of £333,628 and a mortgage of
£88,500, with £68,500 of that mortgage with Fairlie, Gilmore and
Co. Dutton says Fairlie at some time had funds with Messrs Carnegy
and Co. of Prince of Wales Island. Did Laurence Sulivan (died 1786)
influence matters for establishment of Penang in 1786? There is an
ideological similarity between the views of Sulivan, and his feud
with Clive, and the activities of Light, which seems to leave
unspoken (in London) one important matter, an interest in
Geoffrey Dutton, Founder of a City: The Life of Colonel William Light, First Surveyor-General of the Colony of South Australia, Founder of Adelaide, 1786-1839. Melbourne, Cheshire, 1960.) pp. 20-25.
There is another mysterious matter of opium dealing, concerning
the name Baring. MP William Baring (1779-1820), MP, son of banker
Francis Baring and Harriet Herring, married widow Frances Thomson.
Bulley sees him as an opium and cotton dealer in Bulley, Bombay
Ships, pp. 108-112ff. He had years in India, also, it seems,
Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Northbrook, and for Eden (as Frances Thomson had been married to one Arthur Eden). Capt. William Henry Baring (1819-1906), son of William and Frances Thomson, married Elizabeth Hamersley about 21 April, 1849. Burke's Peerage and Baronetage for Northbrook.
Another little-mentioned matter with the early history of Penang
is the use of Indian convict labour. Clodd (p. 120) does mention
"Indian convict labourers". After 1786, Frost mentions them in
Convicts and Empire p. 142, p. 148, also mentioning that an
associate of Sir Joseph Banks, the botanist Kyd, fortified Penang.
By 1787, British India was also looking at the Andaman and Nicobar
Islands, and, would Port Cornwallis on the Andamans eclipse the
strategic usefulness of Penang?
D. J. M. Tate, The Making of Modern South-East Asia. Vol. 2. The Western Impact: Economic and Social Change. Kuala Lumpur, Oxford University Press, pp. 162ff notes Singapore's trade grew rapidly and shortly eclipsed that of Penang. Penang dominated the trade of her own area, from the Mergui archipelago to the north across to the shores of northern Sumatra, down the west cost of the Malayan Peninsula. Penang's trading spheres versus that of Singapore represented a natural division between the south-eastern and north-western sectors of the region. Penang was a good market for easterning only till 1819, and traders from the east had to face the pirates of the area and contrary winds as they sailed up the Straits of Malacca. Once Singapore opened, it ate into Penang, the eastward trade vanished "overnight", and in three years writes Tate, the value of the trade at Singapore had surpassed that of Penang. A recession had set in after 1810, however, and the British occupation of Java had helped. The British war of 1812 with US broke off other valuable commerce in the region. Penang failed to develop into a great naval base. Calcutta had raised Penang to a presidency in 1805 in anticipation it might become a great naval base, but by 1810 it was clear that this would not happen at Penang, so Penang was left, though with top-heavy administration. Singapore won its regional battle by 1819. Tate, Making of Modern South-East Asia, Vol. 2, pp. 149ff. See also A. F. Steuart, Founders of Penang and Adelaide, p. 45. Clodd, Life of Francis Light, pp. 134-136.
1759: Discussing racial oppression, the later British economist Adam Smith wrote, "Fortune never exerted more cruelly her empire over mankind than when she subjected those nations of heroes to the [control of the] refuse of Europe." (Cited in Theodore W. Allen, The Invention of the White Race, Vol. 1, Racial Oppression and Social Control. New York, Verso, 2002., p.33.)
1760: America: New Jersey prohibits the enlistment of slaves in the militia without their master's permission.
Below are items still uncollected
Derek Jarrett, The Begetters of Revolution: England's Involvement with France, 1759-1789. Totawa NJ. 1973.
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