Charles Rose Ellis, Lord Seaford

19th Dec 1771 - 1st Jul 1845

Claimant or beneficiary


Charles Rose Ellis, Lord Seaford, awarded the compensation for several estates in Jamaica as owner-in-fee. 

  1. Ellis was the descendent of Colonel John Ellis who had settled in Jamaica in 1665 and established the family fortune, the grandson of George Ellis, Chief Justice of Jamaica and the son of John Ellis and Elizabeth, daughter of John Pallmer, Chief Justice of Jamaica. He married the Hon. Elizabeth Catherine Caroline Hervey, daughter of John Hervey, Lord Hervey, eldest son of Frederick Hervey, 4th Earl of Bristol, in 1798. She died in January 1803, aged 22. The same year their four-year-old son Charles succeeded his great-grandfather Lord Bristol as sixth Baron Howard de Walden. 1826: raised to the peerage as Baron Seaford, of Seaford in the County of Sussex. Ellis was a friend of Lord and Lady Holland. He was foster brother of Elizabeth Vassall, with whom he had been brought up in Jamaica, and who was to become Lady Holland in 1797. Ellis active in the West India Committee and in Parliament as the leading spokesman for the West India interest. Permanent chair of the West India Committee in early C19th. Spoke against abolition. Member of the West India Committee and the 'Committee of April 25, 1823' formed to press the government for ameliorationist measures for the Crown colonies and to resist moves towards emancipation. Friend of George Canning: used control of seat at Seaford to support Canning; received a peerage for this in 1826.

2.Ellis inherited 'a large West Indian property worth £20,000 p.a. on his father's death' in 1782. 'He supported moral improvement of West Indian slaves, and certain other reforms, but he was never an abolitionist.' He bought Claremont estate in Surrey c. 1798 and sold it 1815.

3.Ellis's wife died in 1803, and he married Anne Louisa Emily Hardy in 1840. Anne Hardy was widow of Sir Thomas Masterman Hardy, Lord Nelson's captain of HMS Victory at Trafalgar ("Kiss me Hardy"). Anne Hardy had known Woodend as a girl as she had been brought up there by her parents, Admiral and Lady Berkeley. They had rented the property from 1790 - when it was built - until the 1810s. The property was built by Lord George Henry Lennox and in 1805 passed to his daughter, Lady Mary Louisa Lennox, who was wife of Lord George Henry Lennox, son of 2nd Duke of Richmond. .It then passed by her will to her niece Lady Georgina Bathurst who owned it until she sold it in 1864 to Sir William de Bathe. Seaford's second wife was related to the owner, Lady Georgina Bathurst, and it was perhaps her influence which led to the Ellis family moving to Woodend. In his will, written on 7 September 1843, Ellis wrote: “And it is my will that my said wife shall have the option of residing in and occupying the house and lands of Wood End which I have lately engaged to rent from Lady Georgiana Bathurst as well for the fractional part of the current year of my tenancy which shall be unexpired at the time of my decease as also for the whole of the then next succeeding year of the tenancy”.

There is no evidence that Ellis ever owned Woodend or that he had an interest in it before he married Anne Hardy in 1840. There are numerous newspaper reports (such as the Sussex Advertiser, Tuesday 07 August 1849) which indicate that Woodend was still used by Lady Bathurst in 1849. Ellis died at Woodend 01/07/1845.

  1. His son, Charles Augustus Ellis, sixth Baron Howard de Walden and second Baron Seaford (1799–1868), married Lady Lucy Joan Cavendish-Scott-Bentinck (d. 29 July 1899), fourth daughter of William Henry Cavendish-Scott-Bentinck, fourth duke of Portland, the brother Lord William Henry Cavendish Bentinck (1774-1839) (q.v.). His uncle George had married Susannah Charlotte Long, sister of Edward Long (1743-1813), author of The History of Jamaica (3 vols., 1774).

  2. Charles Augustus Ellis continued the business in Jamaica with one estate in the north of the island, and a share in an estate in the south. His evidence to the Select Committee of 1847-8 refers to the Montpelier, Shettlewood and Caymanas estates.


  1. R. G. Thorne (ed.), The House of Commons, 1790-1820 (5 vols., London, Secker & Warburg for the History of Parliament Trust, 1986), vol. 3; Thomas C. Holt, The problem of freedom: race, labor, and politics in Jamaica and Britain, 1832-1938 (Baltimore, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1992), pp. 83-5 (which also discusses Seaford's correspondence with Lord Holland); Alexandra Franklin, Enterprise and advantage: The West India interest in Britain, 1774-1840 (University of Pennsylvania, Unpub. PhD, 1992), pp. 81, 214.

  2. H. M. Stephens, ‘Ellis, Charles Rose, first Baron Seaford (1771–1845)’, rev. H. C. G. Matthew, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn.

  3. The will of Charles Rose Ellis, Lord Seaford. The National Archives: PROB 11/2023/163. Williamson Elizabeth, Hudson Tim, Musson Jeremy and Nairn Ian, The Buildings of England; Sussex: West, Yale University Press, 2019, p. 395. (The notion that Baron Seafield [sic] acquired Woodend in 1815 is repeated here). A. M. Broadley, R. G. Bartlett, The Three Dorset Captains at Trafalgar: Thomas Masterman Hardy, Charles Bullen, Henry Digby, London, J. Murray, 1906; p 237.

  4. H. M. Stephens, ‘Ellis, Charles Augustus, sixth Baron Howard de Walden and second Baron Seaford (1799–1868)’, rev. H. C. G. Matthew, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn.; Angelina Osborne, Power and Persuasion: The London West India Committee, 1783-1833 (unpub. PhD., University of Hull, 2014), p. 82.

  5. Evidence to the Select Committee on Sugar and Coffee Planting, 3rd Report, 3rd Report. PP1847-48 (167) XXIII Pt. I, pp. 1-31.

We are grateful to Ted Robbens and James McInnes for their help in compiling this entry.

Further Information

Name in compensation records
Charles Rose, Lord Seaford
(1) Hon. Elizabeth Catherine Caroline Hervey (2) Anne Louisa Emily Masterman (nee Berkeley)
Charles Augustus, 6th Baron Howard de Walden; Augustus
Wealth at death
Oxford DNB Entry

Associated Claims (5)

£2,836 15s 0d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£1,362 16s 1d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£2,740 13s 8d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£4,696 13s 10d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£6,490 2s 1d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)

Associated Estates (7)

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
1817 [EA] - 1839 [LA] → Joint owner
1815 [SY] - 1839 [LA] → Joint owner
1839 [EA] - → Not known
1839 [EA] - → Not known
1786 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Owner
1787 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Owner
1792 [EA] - 1839 [LA] → Owner

Legacies Summary

Cultural (1)

Charles Rose Ellis (1771–1845), 1st Baron Seaford of Seaford, MP by Thomas Lawrence. Date painted: 1829/1830. Oil on canvas, 127 x 101.5 cm. Collection: National Trust. Accession number: 851750 ... 
notes → [accessed 26 November...

Political (1)

Tory / West India interest 
election →
Heytesbury Wiltshire
1793 - 1796
election →
Seaford Sussex
1796 - 1806
election →
East Grinstead Sussex
1807 - 1812
election →
Seaford Sussex
1812 - 1826

Relationships (10)

First Cousins
Son → Father
Nephew → Uncle
Other relatives
Notes →
Foster brother and...
Uncle → Nephew
Father → Son
Father → Son
First Cousins
Other relatives
Notes →
In effect, Holland and Seaford were brothers-in-law: Seaford had been brought up with Elizabeth Vassall, whose second marriage in 1797 was to the 3rd Lord...

Addresses (1)

Woodend, Chichester, Sussex, South-east England, England