John Eldad Walters

2nd Dec 1797 - 3rd Oct 1883

Claimant or beneficiary


London lawyer, involved in a Chancery suit of Walters v John Rock Grosett (q.v.) into which was paid the compensation for three Jamaican estates belonging to Grosett, a former MP: Chepstowe and Spring Garden in St George and Petersfield in St Thomas-in-the-East. The Walters family were friends of the Grosetts, so this was presumably an administrative Chancery suit rather than an entirely confrontational one.

  1. Born at Batheaston House, Somerset, 12/02/1797, the fifth and youngest son of Thomas Walters and his wife Sophia nee Skynner. He was articled at the office of a local lawyer in 1813 and became a pupil at 9 New Square, Lincoln's Inn, in 1815, where he remained until his retirement in 1879. From around 1830 he lived at John Street, Bedford Row but shortly after his marriage to Eleanor Sidebottom on 21/12/1831 at St Lukes Chelsea, the couple moved to Bayswater. (Eleanor was the daughter of Alexander Radclyffe Sidebottom of Lincoln's Inn.) His eldest four children were baptised at St James's, Paddington. He seems to have moved to Kensington where his fourth child, Mary, died in 1840. The baptism of his fifth child Mary Amelia in 1841 gives his address as 15 Campden Villas, Kensington. At the baptism of his seventh child Thomas Radclyffe in 1847 he was at 5 Hyde Park Gate South and of his eighth, Radclyffe in 1849, at 14 Hyde Park Gate South. He was still at 14 Hyde Park Gate South in 1851 and in 1857 moved to Purberry Shot, Ewell Road, Surrey.

  2. He described himself in his school days as dull and slow (although his later career must testify to his intelligence) and that his father hadn't expected him to be successful as a lawyer. An acquaintance wrote to John's son-in-law Henry in 1869: 'What a wonderful man your old father-in-law is! So quiet and contented, nothing seems to disturb his equanimity, why he may live to be 100'. John became head of the law firm at 9 New Square in 1855 and was director of the Law Life Assurance Society from 1859-1880.

  3. Brother of Melmoth Walters, who was identified as barrister-at-law formerly of Lincolns Inn but late of Batheaston and for whom John Eldad Walters acted as executor with [his son] William Melmoth Walters, nephew of Melmoth Walters, after the death of Melmoth Walters 28/07/1868.

  4. Charles Mackenzie Grosett MS p. 182 cites Hannah Spencer Grosett's Jamaican Manuscript (1833) about her brother John Rock Grosett's estate management in Jamaica and her comment that 'our friend Melmoth Walters says great praise is due to him.' Separately she describes 'his merchants' Mr P. Protheroe and Mr J. Cave as being 'highly satisifed with his management'.  C.M. Grosett describes the Walters as 'relations living at Batheaston' whom Hannah Spencer Grosett visited as a girl c. 1800 and posits the Melmoth Walters of the 1830s as a son or grandson of the old Mr Walters of Batheaston.  'The Walters have not been identified' [p. 119].

  5. John Eldad Walters (Personal Estate £45,371 17s 8d) formerly of Bath Easton in Somerset but lately of Lincoln's Inn and of Ewell Surrey died 10/03/1883 at Reigate: sons and 3 of executors were William Melmoth Walters of 9 New Square Lincolns Inn, John Walters of Church St Reigate Surrey Bachelor of Medicine and Radclyffe Walters of 9 New Square.


T71/869 St George claim nos. 56 and 66 for Chepstowe and Spring Garden; T71/867 St Thomas-in-the-East claim no. 563 for Petersfield.

  1. Linda Jackson, 'The Walters Family of Ewell' in the Epsom and Ewell Explorer available at [accessed 07/10/2013]., London, England, Marriages and Banns, 1754-1821 [database online]. Baptism of four eldest children at batch no. C07903-2. 1851 census online.

  2. Linda Jackson, 'The Walters Family of Ewell'.

  3. National Probate Calendar 1868.

  4. Charles Mackenzie Grosett MS in the possession of Professor Catherine Hall of University College London.

  5. National Probate Calendar 1883.

We are grateful to Brian Bouchard for his assistance in compiling this entry.

Further Information

Name in compensation records
John E. Walters
Eleanor Sidebottom (21/12/1831)
Eleanor (1833-1902), William Melmoth (1835-1925), John (1836-1917), Mary (1838-1840), Mary Amelia (1841-1908), Catharine (1843-1923), Thomas Radclyffe (1847-1848), Radclyffe (1849-1907)
Wealth at death
£45,371 17S 8D
Rev. Christopher Haynes' school at Siston then at Cleeve Hill near Bristol [1805-1812 ]
Legal Education
9 New Square, Lincoln's Inn [1815- ]
Church of England

Associated Claims (3)

£1,704 0s 6d
£8,429 18s 1d
£6,009 3s 2d

Legacies Summary

Imperial (1)

East India Company
notes →
His brother Henry (1794-1869) worked for the East India Company and "spent many years in Bengal, but seems to have returned to Somerset as a 'landed proprietor' in the 1830s. Another brother, Thomas...
sources →
Linda Jackson, 'The Walters family of...

Addresses (8)

14 Hyde Park Gate South, London, Middlesex, London, England
15 Campden Villas, Kensington, London, Middlesex, London, England
4 Orme Square, Bayswater, London, Middlesex, London, England
5 Hyde Park Gate South, London, Middlesex, London, England
9 New Square, Lincoln's Inn, London, Middlesex, London, England
9 St George's Terrace, Brighton, Sussex, South-east England, England
Notes →

Probably a temporary address as he still owned his house in Ewell, Surrey (where he lived both before and after 1861) and worked at 9 New Square, Lincoln's Inn.

John Street, Bedford Row, London, Middlesex, London, England
Purberry Shot, Ewell Road, Ewell, Surrey, South-east England, England