1659 - 4th Sep 1714
Monumental inscription in the Cathedral, St Catherine, Jamaica: "HERE LYETH INTERRED THE BODY OF ELIZABETH PESTELL WHO DEPARTED THIS LIFE THE 31st OF DECEMBER ANNO 1710. HERE ALSO RESTS INTERR'D YE BODY OF MR. BEAUMONT PESTELL WHO DIED THE 4th DAY OF SEPR 1714 IN YE FIFTYSIXTH YEAR OF HIS AGE AND YE SECOND YEAR OF HIS CHURCHWARDENSH1P IN WCH OFFICE HE INDUSTRIOUSLY ASSISTED TOWARDS YE REBUILDING OF THIS CHURCH." The same memorial includes Beaumont Pestell, son of Alger and Jane Pestell, born 1721 and died 1724. This second Beaumont was the grandson of the first one as Alger, son of Beaumont and Sarah Pestell, was baptised in St James Clerkenwell, London, in 1689.
Beaumont Pestell married Sarah Alger in St James Duke's Place, London, in 1688. They had another child as well as Alger: Sarhae [sic?], baptised in Fyfield, Essex, in 1691. She may be the wife of John Jem who is named as the son-in-law of Beaumont Pestell in Pestell's will. Sarah, the wife of Beaumont Pestell from Georg's Courte was buried in St James, Clarkenwell, 17/09/1691.
Beaumont Pestell of London, joiner, sued his brother-in-law Abraham Paveley for the non-payment of £29 16s 7d which he said was due in rent and board from Abraham's wife Katherine before her marriage, for items Pestell bought for Katherine, for work Pestell did on Paveley's house and some other small debts. Paveley testified that Katherine worked for Pestell as a housekeeper and that, in addition to £95 Pestell owed to Katherine, Paveley had stood bond for Pestell to several of Pestell's other creditors. It's possible Pestell's move to Jamaica was brought about by the need to escape creditors in London.
Beaumont Pestell of St Catherine, joiner. Estate probated in Jamaica in 1715. Slave-ownership at probate: 103 of whom 52 were listed as male and 51 as female. 0 were listed as boys, girls or children. Total value of estate at probate: £8117.92 Jamaican currency of which £2333 currency was the value of enslaved people. Estate valuation included £132.5 currency cash, £4092 currency debts and £81.83 currency plate.
His father Rev. William Pestell has an entry in Venn's Almuni Cantabrigienses: Matric. sizar from QUEENS', Easter, 1631. Of Cole-Orton, Leics. 2nd s. of Thomas (1602). B.A. 1634; M.A. 1638. R. of Cole-Orton, 1644; ejected, 1646, but reinstated after suffering great hardship, 1660-96. R. of Ravenstone, 1667. Buried Jan. 31, 1695-6, at Cole-Orton. Brother of Thomas (1628) and father of Thomas (above). (D.N.B.; Nichols, III. 741.) Beaumont Pestell's grandfather Thomas Pestell (1586-1667) has an entry in the ODNB as a clergyman and poet.
James Lawrence-Archer, Monumental Inscriptions of the British West Indies (1875) p.64; Ancestry.com, England, Select Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 [database online].
Familysearch.org batch no. M02248-4; Ancestry.com, England, Select Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 [database online]; Ancestry.com, London, Church of England, Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database online].
Transcription of TNA C/267/64 Pestell v. Paveley (1693).
Trevor Burnard, Database of Jamaican inventories, 1674-1784.
Ancestry.com, Cambridge University Alumni, 1261-1900 [database online]; Gordon McMullen, 'Pestell, Thomas (bap. 1586, d. 1667), Church of England clergyman and poet', ODNB online, https://doi.org/10.1093/ref:odnb/22009.
We are grateful to Kenneth Pestell for providing us with his transcription of the will of Beaumont Pestell and a transcription of documents from the Chancery suit Pestell v. Paveley.
Alger (1689-1732), Sarhae
Transcript of the Will of Beaumont Pestell of Jamaica Will dated 4 August 1714 Proven 10 March 1714/15
In the name of God Amen I Beaumont Pestell of the Towne of St Iago Delavega Joyner being of Sound Mind and Memory praise be given to Almighty God for the Same I doe Make and ordaine this My Last Will and Testamt In Manner and form following first I commend my Soule into the hands of Almighty God Hopeing to have free pardon for and Remission of all My Sins through the Merretts of my Blessed Saviour Jesus Christ & my Body I commit to the Earth to be Decently buried According to the discrecon of my Exr hereafter Named & as touching the Disposion of all such worldly goods as it hath pleased God to Bless me wth all I give and Dispose thereof as followeth, Imprimis My will is that all my just Debts and funeral Expenses be fully pd and Satisfied Item I give to my dear Sister Midlaton in the Kingdom of England one Hundred pounds (Sterling) Money to be pd her within twelve Months after my Decease if shee be then Liveing Item I give unto my Dear Sister Midlaton's Daughters twenty pounds apiece that be then liveing Like Sterling Money to be pd to every one of them within Twelve Months After My Decease. Item Item I Give to my Brother Walter Pestell in the Sity of London Jewiller Twenty five pounds and all so to my Sister his wife Twenty five pounds to be pd to them if they be then Liveing the Like Sterling Money of England within twelve Months after my Decease Item I Give unto my Neece Sarah Pestell Daughter of my Brother Thomas Pestell Twenty five pounds Like Sterling Money to be pd to her if then Liveing within twelve Months after my Decease Item I give unto my Son in Law John Jem Two Hundred pounds to be allowed him out of his bond that I now have now for three Hundred pounds Imediately After my Death if he be then Liveing All the rest Residue of my whole Estate I give to my Dear Son Alger Pestell and to the heires of his Body Lawfully to be Begotten for ever butt in case my Son Alger happen to dye without heires then my will is that my whole Estate be Equally (to be - crossed out) Devided betwixt my Sister Midlaton's Daughter and my Neece Sarah Pestell and my Brother Walter & his wife Share and Share alike and I Doe hereby (Moninate) and Appoint my Dear Son Alger Pestell My whole Extor of this my Last will revoking all former Wills by Me Made whereof I the Sd Beaumont Pestell have here unto sett My hand and Seale this fourth day of August in the year of our Lord one thousand Seven Hundred & fourteen Signed Sealed Published and Declared by the within Named Beaumont Pestell to be his Last will and Testamt in the presence of us and Signed by us in the presence of the Sd Beaumont Pestell
Mem: That on the Tenth day of March 1714 Personally Appeared before me Mathew Gregory & Jerome Collins Esqrs & Henry Baram Gent and Made oath on the Holy Evangelist that they were well accqainted with the Hand writeing of Beaumont Pestell Late of the Parish of St Catherines Joyner & that they do believe that the within written Instrument purporting the Last Will & Testament of the Sd Beaumont is all of the proper hand writeing of the said Beaumont Pestell & that they know nothing of any other will made by the sd Beaumont Pestell which may tend to the disadvantage of the will within written
Extur C Hamilton
All the above is transcribed from a document in the Island Record Office of Jamica. Record No. RGO/SP Tw Liber 14 Fol. 133
The whole of the document, including the memorandum at the foot, is clearly written in the same hand and it is probably a Court record, rather than the original will written by Beaumont Pestell himself.
Mathew Gregory was a Churchwarden (with Beaumont Pestell) at St Catherine's, in St Iago de la Vega, later called Spanish Town. Kenneth Pestell 2012.
Father → Son
Uncle → Nephew