John Caspar Mais

1800 - 11th Nov 1851

Claimant or beneficiary


Merchant of London, born in Jamaica in 1800 and in Britain from the early 1830s.

  1. John Mais married Philippina Weise, a daughter of Johan Caspar Weise, in 1800 in Kingston and they had a number of children in Jamaica, the eldest being John Caspar Mais, who was baptised 29/11/1800 in Kingston. John and Philippina are described in the registers as people of colour/free quadroons/free mustees. In his will dated 18/08/1843, John Caspar Mais refers to the Hon. John Mais (q.v.) as his uncle, suggesting that John Caspar Mais's father was an illegitimate son of Hon. John Mais's father, John Mais senior (although he may instead have been the illegitimate son of Charles Mais or of another brother of John Mais senior).

  2. John Caspar Mais was referred to as a gentleman and attorney of Kingston in an indenture of 1828 which relinquished the Hon. John Mais of his executorship and trusteeship responsibilities arising from the will of John Caspar Mais's father John. However a further indenture initiated in 1828 and completed in 1829 gave John Caspar Mais and Richard Webb Panting trusteeship over Philippina’s former husband’s estate, in place of the Hon. John Mais and Henry Potter Mais, who had died. The other original trustee, John Casper Weise, continued to be a trustee.

  3. • John Caspar Mais inherited and then lost a substantial sum of money. Although he was noted as an attorney in Jamaica as above, he later tried to establish a foreign confectionery business in Guernsey but he was duped by his business partners and declared bankrupt in September 1841. At this point he was a merchant of Lime Street in London living in Norwood. • In 1842 the Court deferred awarding John Caspar Mais a certificate to trade, ruling that as an experienced businessman he should not have allowed himself to be duped. • Earlier in 1841 John Caspar Mais had submitted a bill of complaint in an attempt to recover monies he said were owed to him from the estate of William Cooper of Jersey and his agents and associates in relation to joint business ventures. The alleged debt arose because Cooper, his ship and the cargo had all been lost at sea. The executors of Cooper’s estate - Early, Banks and another Cooper - had also counter-claimed against John Caspar Mais for insurance monies. • John Caspar Mais was awarded the certificate in 1843 but his next business ventures seem to have been no more successful as he spent time in gaol in Dover for insolvency between 1846 and 1849. He had been living in Dover and had previously carried on business as a wholesale confectioner in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and as a wine and general merchant in London.

  4. “Law Intelligence (London, Wednesday.) Court of Bankruptcy. In the matter of John Caspar Mais. This case seemed to excite considerable interest, and the court was filled with creditors. The bankrupt was described as of Lime Street, merchant; but was also stated to have had a confectionary manufactory in Guernsey, from whence he exported large quanitites of ‘sweet stuff’ to this country, and in which it was supposed he was driving a very profitable traffic. He was also, however, very materially mixed up with Colls, Thompson, in the accommodation bill business, and his debts and liabilities were estimated at from 80,000l. to 100,000l while his assets are little better than nominal. This being the day fixed for the choice of assignees, proofs to a large amount were tendered, and a longstruggle took place as to which party should have the choice of assignees. After some conversation between the two solicitors, Mr. Richard Lees, of Bucklersbury, and Mr. Edward Le Batt, were appointed assignees.”

  5. John Caspar Mais and his wife Sarah Evena nee McLachlin had 5 children: Evena Frances Emmeline (1830), Laura Ellen (1834), Phillippina (1836), Caspar Flowerdew (1838) and Richard Dalton (1840). Evena was baptised in Bristol in 1830 and died in Everton, Lancashire in 1831 age 16 months of "Water on Hd" when her parent's address was given as Edge Hill, Everton. The youngest four children were all born in Middlesex. At the baptism of Laura Ellen in 1835, their address was Rectory Place, Hackney and John Caspar Mais's occupation is "Gentleman". They were at the same address for the baptism of Phillippina in 1836 (occupation "merchant") and at Palatine Houses, Stoke Newington, for the baptism of Caspar in 1838.

  6. John Caspar Mais's counting house is recorded at Crosby-hall Chambers, Bishopsgate Street in 1837. In the census of 1841 the family were living at Palatine Houses, Stoke Newington: John age 40 and Sarah age 33, both born in foreign parts, and Laura age 7, Phillippina age 5, Caspar age 3 and Richard age 1.

  7. He died 11/11/1851 age 51. The estate and effects of John Caspar Mais, "formerly of Downshire Hill, Hampstead, late of 18 Camden Street North, Camden ... without deducting any Thing on Account of the Debts due and owing from the Deceased" was valued for probate 20/01/1852 as under £800. He was buried 15/10/1851 at Kensal Green All Souls in Middlesex.

  8. In his will, dated 18/08/1843, he refers to the Hon. John Mais as his uncle and John Knaggs, surgeon, a friend/associate of Hon. John, was granted administration. John Caspar Mais’ sister Ann Bean (or Baines) Mais was appointed guardian to his children one of whom, Laura Ellen, was working in Heavitree, Exeter, in 1881, which was where Ann Bean (or Baines) had been living.

  9. In the claim for St Ann no. 82, John Mais claimed as an executor and trustee of Francis Sicard and then Hon. John Mais counterclaimed as a judgement creditor. This seems likely to be John Caspar Mais claiming and then Hon. John Mais counterclaiming. It is possible that John Caspar Mais returned to Jamaica between the death in Liverpool of Evena in 1831 and the baptism in London of Laura in 1835. John Mais registered 4 enslaved persons in 1832, as attorney to Mary Pownall, who was related to the Mais family by marriage. It seems likely that Francis Sicard was also related to the Maises by marriage: Henry Potter Mais married Matilda Sicard in 1825. There are a number of claims where it's not been clearly established whether Hon. John Mais or John Caspar Mais were involved: these are currently grouped under Hon. John Mais.


  1. Howard Mais, 'Slave Compensation Databases: John Maises' [unpublished work].

  2. Mais, op. cit., sourced to transcripts in Jamaican archives.

  3. Direct quote from Mais, op. cit., sourced to: Bankrupt Directory 1820-1843; The Times 15/09/1841, 19/12/1842 and 26/12/1842; National Archives C13/1947/12; London Gazettes 19922, 20018, 20041, 20056, 20155, 20156, 20204, 20235, 20567, 20570, 20595, 20614, 20615, 20980 and 20987.

  4. From the Hampshire Advertiser 16/10/1841, an image published in wendypardy’s public member tree on

  5. Mais, op. cit. batch no. C00640-2., Non-Conformist and Non-Parochial Registers, 1567-1970 [database online]., London, England, Births and Baptisms, 1813-1906 [database online].

  6., London, England, Electorial Registers 1832-1965 [database online]. 1841 census online.

  7., London, England, Wills and Probate, 1507-1858 [database online]., London, England, Deaths and Burials, 1813-1980 [database online].

  8. Mais, op. cit., sourced to will of John Caspar Mais, proved 20/01/1852 – London Metropolitan Archives X019/041a & DL/C/533/167/1.

  9. These claims are Kingston nos. 1531 and 1771, St David no. 1, St George no. 186, St John no. 139, St Mary no. 289 and Port Royal no. 15, all grouped with the claimant John Mais.

We are grateful to Howard Mais for his assistance in compiling this entry.

Further Information

Name in compensation records
John Mais
Sarah Evena McLachlin
Evena Frances Emmeline (1830-1831), Laura Ellen (1834-1892), Phillippina (1836-), Caspar Flowerdew (1838-1887), Richard Dalton (1840-)
Wealth at death

Associated Claims (1)

£1,512 2s 1d
Unsuccessful claimant (Executor or executrix)

Associated Estates (1)

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
1834 [EA] - → Executor

Relationships (7)

Nephew → Uncle
Notes →
This relationship is tentative - in his will, John Caspar Mais refers to Hon. John Mais as his...
Nephew → Aunt
First Cousins
Other relatives
Notes →
Elizabeth was probably the great-aunt of John Caspar, being married to his probable great-uncle Charles...
Son → Mother
Grandson → Grandfather
Extra-marital relationships

Addresses (7)

Edge Hill, Everton, Liverpool, Lancashire, North-west England, England
18 Camden Street North, Camden, London, Middlesex, London, England
Crosby-hall Chambers, Bishopsgate Street, London, Middlesex, London, England
Devonshire Hill, Hampstead, London, Middlesex, London, England
Lime Street, City of London, Middlesex, London, England
Palatine Houses, Stoke Newington, London, Middlesex, London, England
Rectory Place, Hackney, London, Middlesex, London, England