Thomas Legall Yates of Brockhurst

1784 - 17th Dec 1835

Claimant or beneficiary


Merchant of Kingston Jamaica who returned to England to live at Brockhurst Hampshire and died in 1835. In several of the awards for which Thomas Legal[l] Yates claimed, the compensation was paid to his executor, Barnaby Maddan (q.v.). Son of Ambrose Nicholas Yates (q.v.).    

NB a second Thomas Legal[l] Yates (1752-1832), who had married Mary Beckford (1761-1813, daughter of Ballard Beckford (1732-1764)) and died c. 1832, was the half-brother of Ambrose Nicholas Yates and uncle of this Thomas Legall Yates.

  1. Thomas Legall, son of Ambrose Nicholas and Frances Yates, was baptised in Portsea, Hampshire, 30/12/1784.

  2. In a long-term relationship with Dorothy Diana Smellie, "free quadroon", and with her the father of Eliza Thomas Yates (1808-), Edward Cookson Yates (1809-), Mary Ann Frances Morier Yates (1812-), Robert Grant Watson Yates (1814-), Frances Beckford Yates (1816-), Eliza Proctor Swiney Yates (1819-) Henrietta Sarah Yates (1821-), Emily Margaret Yates (1825-) and Robert Thomas Clement Yates (1828-). All the children were baptised in Kingston except Henrietta who was baptised in St Luke, Chelsea, when Thomas and Dorothy Yates were recorded as married and living in Sloane Street, London, with Thomas as a merchant. He married Dorothy in St George's, Hanover Square, in 1834.

  3. Will of the Honorable Thomas Legal[l] Yates of Kingston County of Surrey Jamaica proved 09/12/1835. His death-date was given as 17/07/1835 in a notice for creditors in 1855, arising from the Chancery suits of Yates v Maddan and Lewis v Yates.  His son Robert Thomas Clement[s] Yates matriculated Trinity Cambridge 1851 aged 22 born Kingston Jamaica.

  4. Genealogical sites state that Elizabeth Proctor Swiney Yates, daughter of Thomas Legal Yates, married William Peyton 1842: the two have corresponding entries for a marriage Q1 1842 at St George Hanover Square. Emily Margaret Yates daughter of Thomas Legal Yates 'General in the Army' married Edward Francis Waldron at Mary Magdalene St Pancras 08/02/1865.


T71/867 St Thomas-in-the-East no. 342; T71/864 Port Royal nos. 3, 172 and 216; T7/869 St George no. 205; T71/865 St Andrew nos. 97, 491 and 512. Thomas Legal[l] Yates was also a trustee or assignee in two further awards, Kingston nos. 669 and 1490; he counterclaimed apparently unsuccesfully in two other awards, T71/866 St David no. 86 and T71/865 St Andrew no. 356.

  1., Hampshire, Portsmouth Baptisms [database online].

  2., Jamaica Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880 [database online];, London, England, Births and Baptisms, 1813-1906 [database online];, Westminster Marriages [database online].

  3. PROB 11/1855; London Gazette, Issue 21750, 24/07/1855, p. 2848, which describes him as formerly of Kingston Jamaica and late of Brockhurst Lodge county of Southampton;, Cambridge University Alumni 1261-1900 [database online].

  4. [accessed 11/06/2012]; FreeUKGen, England and Wales Free BMD Database, Deaths, 1837-1983 [database online];, London, England, Marriages and Banns, 1754-1921 [database online].

See separate entry for Dorothy Diana Yates nee Smellie for more information on the children of this couple.

Further Information

Name in compensation records
Thomas Legal Yates
Dorothy Diana Smellie
Eliza Thomas (1808-), Edward Cookson (1809-), Mary Ann Frances Morier (1812-), Robert Grant Watson (1814-), Frances Beckford (1816-), Eliza Proctor Swiney (1819-), Emily Margaret (1825-), Robert Thomas Clement (1828-), Henrietta Sarah Breton

PROB 11/1855 - precis.

Thomas Legal Yates of Kingston, Jamaica.

Manumise my faithful servants Owen alias Robert Simon and Sukey.

To my brother Robert Ballard Yates, a post captain in His Majesty's Navy, all my silver plate.

To my brother Hugh Seymore Yates all my library of books.

All my estate whatever wherever to be liable for the payment of my just debts and funeral expenses.

To my son Edward Cookson Yates an annuity of £100 per annum for life and should he die a child him surviving I continue the same annuity of such child's use and benefit to be paid to his or her mother.

I continue the charity which I have been allowing Mrs Catherine Griffiths widow of the late William Griffiths since the death of her brother William Augustus Morse of £100 sterling payable in London for her natural life.

To my sister Eliza Pillew Newbray £100 sterling per annum for life.

To each of my sisters named Mary Ann Yates and Frances Beckford Yates £50 sterling per annum for life.

It is my will and desire that my trustees keep and preserve the complement of negroes now employed on His Majesty's naval yard under contract by purchasing others in the room of such as may die or be discharged.

All rest and residue real and personal or mixes to my wife Dorothy Diana Yates, to my daughter Mary Ann Morier Yates and my co-partner and friend James Cockburn, to my friends James Minot and Barnaby Maddan, both in Kingston Esquires, or such of them as may qualify upon trust to uphold and keep up my plantations and the complement of negroes now employed at His Majesty's naval yard by purchase of other negroes in room of such as may happen to die or be discharged from His Majesty's naval yard, in the next place to pay, satisfy and discharge the several legacies and annuities hereintobefore given, and then to pay and apply the residue of such personal estate and all the real estate and the profits to my wife Dorothy Diana Yates and my several children named Mary Ann Morier Yates, Frances Beckford Yates, Elizabeth Proctor Swiney Yates, Henrietta Breton Yates, Emily Yates and Robert Clement Yates equally, upon the male attaining the age of 21 years and the females at age 21 or marriage, they being married with their mother's consent.

My trustees before named to be executrixes and executors.

Signed 18/07/1832.

Codicil. I revoke my bequest to Mrs Catherine Griffiths whose ungrateful and most unjust conduct towards me convinces me that my benevolent intentions would have been bestowed on one totally undeserving, besides which I now find the said Catherine Griffiths is not the needy object she has represented herself having also looked again into the state of accounts in which her late husband was interested and finding the more I examine the most enormous are the several sums with which he is chargeable being appropriated same to his own and family's uses and the different partnerships which he had formed unconnected with me. I cannot therefore in justice to my own family tax my estate with siad annuity particularly as the property in the West Indies are so greatly depreciated since the making of my aforesaid will. My books and plate which I had bequeathed to my brothers Hugh Seymour and Robert Ballard Yates I hereby revoke and bequeath to my beloved and affectionate son Robert Clement Yates. Signed Brockburst Lodges, Alverstoke, 25/01/1835.

And in consequence of the great change of West India affairs I feel myself compelled to reduce the life annuities to my three beloved sisters one third in amount less than bequeathed. Brockhurst 11/03/1835.

Ambrose Nicholas Yates of Alverstoke, Robert Ballar Yates of the same place, a commander in His Majesty's Navy, and Geroge Moubray of God Harbourg in Gosport, Alberstoke, a captain in His Majesty's Navy, severally make oath and say that they are relatives of the late Thomas Legal Yates who died 17 July last past. Ambrose Nicholas Yates being his father, Robert Ballard Yates his brother and George Moubray his brother-in-law together found the will amongst other documents at Brockhurst.

Proved at London 09/12/1835 by Barnaby Maddan Esquire. Proved at London 02/11/1837 by Dorothy Diana Yates the relict. Proved at London 09/12/1840 by Mary Ann Frances Morier Yates, spinster, the daughter.

West India merchant

Associated Claims (5)

£1,503 13s 6d
Deceased awardee
£1,560 19s 4d
Beneficiary deceased
£906 17s 10d
Beneficiary unsuccessful
£706 3s 11d
Unsuccessful claimant
£625 4s 3d
Unsuccessful claimant

Associated Estates (19)

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

  • SD - Association Start Date
  • SY - Association Start Year
  • EA - Earliest Known Association
  • ED - Association End Date
  • EY - Association End Year
  • LA - Latest Known Association
1826 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Trustee
- 1835 [EY] → Owner
1826 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Attorney
1829 [EA] - → Agent
1817 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Attorney
1826 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Trustee
1826 [EA] - 17/12/1835 [ED] → Owner
1823 [EA] - → Executor
- 1825 [EY] → Mortgage Holder
1825 [SY] - 17/12/1835 [ED] → Owner
1829 [EA] - → Trustee
1832 [EA] - → Agent
1819 [EA] - 1835 [EY] → Owner

Possibly joint owner until 1825.

1839 [EA] - → Previous owner
1820 [EA] - 17/12/1835 [ED] → Owner
1817 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Agent
1817 [EA] - → Owner
1817 [EA] - → Attorney
1817 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Owner

Relationships (5)

Business partners
Son → Father
Extra-marital relationships
Notes →
Then husband and...
Nephew → Uncle

Addresses (2)

Brockhurst Lodge, Alverstoke, Hampshire, Wessex, England
Sloane Street, London, Middlesex, London, England