Nathaniel Bayly

1726 - 1798


The Bayly family had long-standing connections to Jamaica and though Bayly was born in Westbury, he came to England from Jamaica in 1759, settling in London. According to his nephew, Bryan Edwards, author of the History of the West Indies: 'In 1759, a younger and the only brother of my great and good uncle, came to England, and settling in London, took me to reside with him, in a high and elegant style of life. He was a representative in Parliament for Abingdon, and afterwards for his native town. Further I cannot speak of him so favourably as I could wish; for I remember that at the period I allude to, his conduct towards me was such as not to inspire me with much respect: he perceived it; and soon after, in the latter end of the same year, sent me to Jamaica. This proved a happy and fortunate change in my life, for I found my eldest uncle the reverse, in every possible circumstance, of his brother.'

As an MP his West Indian interests were of paramount importance, especially during the period 1774-78. Thus he thought that the Government’s American policy would ruin the both himself and the West Indies. For instance, on 11 December 1775 he said in the Commons that 'in order to wreak the revenge of a vindictive ministry on the Americans, you are now going to ruin all the plantations in the West-India islands, and to give their present produce up for plunder to your sailors, before the inhabitants can have any notice of your intentions'. And again, on 21 December: 'He was well informed, nay he was fully convinced, that the inhabitants of those islands must be starved; and though they should not, their crops must be left, as they had not nearly lumber enough to save the present; that such being the case, the proprietors must be ruined, and the consequences would in the end reach the merchants, so as, he feared, to bring on a general bankruptcy among those in any manner concerned or interested in the West-India trade.'

Bayly married (1) 3 May 1767, Elizabeth, daughter of the Hon. Charles Ingram, M.P., sister of Charles, 9th Viscount Irwin, no children. (2) 18 March 1773, Sophia Magdalena Lamack of Clapham with whom he had at four daughters and two sons: Charles Nathaniel (c. 1775), Charlotte Susanna, Diana Sarah (1781), Sophia Maria (1783), Wentworth (1784) and Anna (1786).

Bayly's second daughter Charlotte Susanna married Job Matthew Raikes (q.v.) in Woodford, Essex, in 1798. His third daughter Sophia Maria married Thomas Raikes junior in Woodford in 1802. Thomas Raikes father, also Thomas, was Governor of the Bank of England 1797-1799 as was Thomas junior's brother Richard Mee Raikes from 1833-1834; Thomas junior was also a cousin of Job Matthew Raikes.


Bryan Edwards, 'Sketch of the Life of the Author' in his History …of the British West Indies (5th edn., 5 vols., vol. 1, 1819), pp. ix-x; John Cannon, BAYLY, Nathaniel (c.1726-98), of Epsom, Surr. and Shipton House, Abingdon, Berks., History of Parliament online;, Surrey, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database online];, Essex, England, Church of England Marriages, 1754-1935 [database online]; Salisbury and Winchester Journal 31/05/1802; W. P. Courtney, revised by K. D. Reynolds, 'Raikes, Thomas (1777–1848), dandy and diarist', ODNB Online.

We are grateful to Alastair Gilks for his assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

(1) Elisabeth Ingram; (2) Sophia Magdalena Lamack
With (2) Charles Nathaniel, Charlotte Susanna, Diana Sarah, Sophia Maria, Wentworth, Anna

Will of Nathaniel Bayly of island of Jamaica proved 31/12/1799. The will begins with his recital that whereas he had spent 'many thousands' on erecting superb works on Trinity, Tryall, Brimmer Hall and Roslin sugar plantations over and above what was due to him by the arbitrators of the five years produce for the same under his late brother's will, he gave and bequeathed the same or as much as might be deemed his property into his estate, together with the large quantities of negroes, stock and cattle he had placed on them. He left his estates of Wentworth and Gibraltar with all negroes, cattle and conveyances thereon for making sugar' to his son Wentworth 'now a minor in England'. He left £40,000 sterling each to his daughters Sophia, Diana and Anna and to his daughter Charlotte such a sum as to make up to £40,000 what she had had or was to have on her marriage.' The monetary legacies were to be reduced by the amount over £20,000 each was entitled to under the will of Nathaniel Bayly's brother (presumably Zachary). Job Mathew Raikes (q.v.) was one of his executors.

PROB 11/1317/242

Associated Estates (6)

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
1775 [EA] - 1786 [LA] → Owner
1770 [EA] - 1798 [EY] → Owner
1757 [EA] - 1760 [LA] → Attorney
1775 [EA] - 1797 [LA] → Owner

James Hakewill noted that Nathaniel Bayly had undertaken major building work on the estate which was completed in 1797.

1775 [EA] - 1786 [LA] → Owner
1753 [EA] - → Overseer

Legacies Summary

Political (1)

West India interest 
election →
Abingdon Berkshire
1770 - 1774
election →
Westbury Wiltshire
1774 - 1779

Relationships (7)

Father → Son
Father → Son
Father → Natural Son
Notes →
Nathaniel Bayly Williams was also an executor for his...
Uncle → Nephew
Uncle → Nephew
Father-in-law → Son-in-law