Robert Bowen

???? - 1826


Returned slave-owner of Jamaica, dying at Weston-super-Mare in 1826, and buried at Cheltenham.

  1. Will of Robert Bowen [late of the parish of St James Jamaica but now of the City] of Bristol [made in 1814] proved 06/05/1826. Under the will he left £3000 to his son John Grizell Bowen, and the Retreat estate and Dunluce [sp?] Penn in St James to his sons Robert Bowen and Richard Lawrence Bowen. He left £5000 each to his daughters Catharine Knowles, Charlotte Emmeline, Caroline Eloisa and Frances Eliza Bowen, and £4000 in trust to his daughter Sabina Bowen Bowen, wife of Joseph Bowen of St James. He left his son Joseph Robert Bowen, who was a trustee and executor, only £100, implying he had previously made in vivo gifts of property to him [probably including the Orchard estate]. In a codicil he replaced John Henry Deffell as trustee of his property at Southwell Street and St Michael's Hill in Bristol but repeated his instructions to sell the property. He was then living at Weston-super-Mare.

  2. Robert Bowen's daughter Caroline Eloisa, was baptised in Bristol 15/04/1800. She married Samuel Edward Bernard (q.v.) in Weston-super-Mare in 1827. Their daughter Charlotte Emmeline was baptised in Pytchley, Northamptonshire, 29/11/1829. The death of Caroline Eloisa Bernard was registered Q4 1837 in Cheltenham.

  3. Another daughter, Catharine Knowles Bowen, was baptised in St James, Jamaica, in 1784. She died in 1859 at the Maison Buscarlet Haute Plante Pau in the Basses Pyrenees in France, a spinster, effects under £14,000. Probate records her also as "late of Weston-super-Mare". Her executor was her nephew Rev. Amalric Frederick Buscarlet of the Maison Buscarlet. Effects under £14,000; resworn under £12,000.

  4. Daughter Frances Eliza Bowen was baptised in Bristol in 1805. She married Jules Leonard Buscarlet in Florence in 1834.

  5. Charlotte Emmeline was baptised in Bristol in 1800. The will with two codicils of Charlotte Emmeline Bowen, formerly of Weston-super-Mare in Somerset, afterwards of Pau in the Basses Pyrenees but late of Werescote Wellington in Somerset who died 27/10/1887 at Werescote was proved by Robert Bowen of Werescote the nephew and John Bradley of 1 New-court Temple, two of the executors. Personal estate £49,143 14s 11d.

  6. Sabina Bowen was baptised in Marylebone in 1799. She married Joseph Bowen (q.v.) in 1812 in Bristol. They had at least six children baptised in St James, Jamaica: Mary Grizzel (1814), Joseph (1816), Lydia Myrie (1819), Sabina Catherine (1821), John Robert Bergansa (1825) and Catherine Frances (1829). Sabina B. Bowen, widow, age 62, annuitant, born Marylebone, was living in the household of her daughter Lydia M. Edwards, widow, and another daughter Catherine Bowen, at 60 Queen Square, Bristol, in 1851. In 1861 she was in Thurlow Place, Shoreditch; in 1871 she was a visitor in the household of her son-in-law John Elliott Woods in Castleton, Rochdale; in 1881 she was living next door to her daughter Lydia in Ilfracombe, Devon. The death of Sabina Bowen, age 95, was registered Q1 at Barnstaple, Devon.


  1. PROB 11/1711/483.

  2., Bristol, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database online];, Northamptonshire, England, Church of England Baptisms, 1813-1912 [database online];, England and Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1837-1915 [database online].

  3., Jamaica Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880 [database online]; National Probate Calendar 1859.

  4., Bristol, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database online];, Italy, Select Marriages, 1809-1900 [database online].

  5., Bristol, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database online]; National Probate Calendar 1887.

  6.,, England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 [database online];, Jamaica Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880 [database online]; 1851-1881 censuses online;, England & Wales Deaths 1837-2007 [database online].

We are grateful to David Barker for his assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

Mary Lawrence Grizell
Catherine Knowles; Charlotte Emmeline; Caroline Eloisa; Frances Eliza Bowen; Joseph Robert Bowen; John Grizell; Robert; Richard Lawrence; Sabina

Associated Estates (3)

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
1810 [EA] - 1811 [LA] → Owner
1809 [EA] - 1823 [LA] → Owner
1826 [EA] - → Previous owner

Relationships (8)

Father → Son
Father → Son
Father → Son
Brother → Sister
Notes →
Inferred relationship but supported by...
Father-in-law → Son-in-law
Notes →
Joseph was married to Robert Bowen's daughter Sabina Bowen Bowen...
Son → Father
Father → Son
Father-in-law → Son-in-law

Addresses (2)

Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, South-west England, England
Bristol, Gloucestershire, South-west England, England
Notes →

Of Bristol when he made his will in 1814, when he had property at Southwell Street and St Michael's Hill. But he time he died in 1826 he was at Weston-super-Mare.