Alexander Cockburn

1739 - 8th Nov 1815


Biography

Born in Duns, Berwickshire, August 1739, son of William Cockburn and Barbara Home, a physician in Grenada, married Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Kennedy of Maybole, in Edinburgh, 7 November 1773, father of Thomas, Helen, Wilhelmina and Walter, died in St George, Grenada 8 November 1815. Possibly the Alexander Cockburn, a 36 year old planter, who with his 26 year old wife, sailed from Plymouth to the Grenades on the Lawrent 9 January 1774. Mentioned in numerous Grenadan documents in the 1790s.

  1. The Petition to HM King George III for the establishment of Tain Royal Academy lists Alexander Cockburn of Grenada as being a subscriber of £50 and upwards towards "defraying the expense of erecting building and endowing an Academy" in 1807.

  2. William Kennedy Laurie, Esquire, of Redcastle, married Miss William Cockburn, youngest daughter of Alexander Cockburn Esquire of St George's in Grenada, in Edinburgh 12/09/1805.

  3. Will of Alexander Cockburn of St George Grenada proved 06/08/1817. In the will he left his sugar estate called Florida in St John to his son Walter, together with a specific list attached of 111 enslaved people on the estate and a seashore store and additional land, including a lot near Charlotte town commonly called the town of Gouyave, and a parcel of land near Florida known as Rhinee [sic] bought from David McEwen as Receiver; he also left estates called Retreat and Mount D'Or to Walter Cockburn, similarly with the enslaved people, 61 altogether, also listed in an attachment. He subjected the estate to two annuities of £50 p.a. to each of Janet and Margaret Kennedy of Edinburgh. He left monetary legacies of some £7000 including £1000 of which the interest was to go to his natural daughter Elizabeth, whose mother was identified as a free woman of colour, Delia Cockburn, and £4500 in trust for William Baillie Rose of Rhinee [sic] near Tain for Rose to use for the support and education of his children with his late wife Helen. He said in the will that he had at periods practised as a physician in partnership with William Stephenson.


Sources

David Dobson, Scots in the West Indies, 1707-1857 (Baltimore, Maryland, 2006), vol. 2; EAP295: Digitising the endangered archives of Grenada: http://eap.bl.uk/database/overview_item.a4d?catId=140828;r=19895 [accessed 09/09/2016].

  1. Petition to George III for the establishment of Tain Royal Academy in 1807, facsimile of the Petition in the possession of Councillor Derek Louden.

  2. Scots Magazine vol. 67 p. 803 (October 1805).

  3. PROB 11/1595/75.

We are grateful to Derek Louden for his assistance with compiling this entry.


Further Information

Absentee?
Transatlantic?
Spouse
Elizabeth
Children
Thomas, Helen Wilhelmina, Walter
Occupation
Physician and planter

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
- 1815 [EY] → Owner

In his will made in 1815, Alexander Cockburn left his estate called Florida in St John and 111 specified enslaved people to his son Walter Cockburn. It is not clear what happened immediately thereafter.

1780 [EA] - → Owner
1780 [EA] - → Joint owner

Legacies Summary

Cultural (1)

Subscriber
Tain Royal Academy...... 
notes →
The Petition to HM King George III for the establishment of Tain Royal Academy lists Alexander Cockburn of Grenada as being a subscriber of £50 and upwards towards "defraying the expense of erecting...

Relationships (5)

Father → Son
Testator → Legatee
Notes →
Possibly father and natural son...
Extra-marital relationships
Father-in-law → Son-in-law
Notes →
Alexander Cockburn left £4500 in trust for William Baillie Rose for the support of the latter's children with his late wife Helen. Although the will did not identify him as such, David Alston shows...
Father-in-law → Son-in-law

Addresses (1)

Duns, Berwickshire, Southern Scotland, Scotland