Hon. Abraham Hodgson

1765 - 11th Apr 1837

Claimant or beneficiary


'A bigoted old planter' but 'the cleverest and wealthiest man in the house [i.e. the Jamaican Assembly]' (attributed to Lord Sligo). Reported to have been active as a merchant first in Hodgson, Williams and Hodgson (terminated 1794; presumably with John Hodgson and Henry Williams, each of whom q.v.), and subsequently with his first cousin Charles Horsfall of Liverpool in Horsfall and Hodgson c. 1813. Father of Isaac Scott Hodgson (q.v.). Accompanied Richard Barrett to England in 1832-1833 to represent the interests of the Jamaican slave-owners following the Baptist War.

  1. Elected to the Jamaican House of Assembly in July 1820, presumably for the second time as he had been a Member of Assembly for St.Mary “for nearly ten years” in July 1826, was Custos of the parish in 1827, and still held both offices at his death in 1837.

  2. He was a Lieutenant in the St.Mary Battalion of the St.Mary & St.George Regiment in 1790, was a Magistrate in St.Mary by 1802 and Senior Magistrate there by 1816. In 1823 he presided at the trial, and subsequently attended the execution, of nine enslaved men charged with insurrection.

  3. He was voted £2,500 by the House of Assembly for being one of its delegates to assist in pleading the case for slavery before British Parliamentary committees.

  4. His children, by his wife Jane, John Tracey Hodgson (born 22/12/1794), Mary Field Hodgson (born 17/5/1796) and Abraham Hodgson (born 21/1/1799), were baptised in St.Ann, 23/2/1800. Isaac Scott Hodgson was his only son alive in 1831.

  5. Will of Abraham Hodgson of [the parish St Mary Jamaica currently residing in Tavistock Square] St Pancras Middlesex [made in 1833] proved 04/07/1837. He dealt elaborately with what he said was his only debt, £6000 borrowed from the executors and trustees of John Tracey formerly of Jamaica, on which he had paid the interest to Wine [sic] Hodgson the widow of John Tracey for her life and since her death half for the benefit of his son Isaac Scott Hodgson and half to Avis [sp?] Stennett of Jamaica. He said he had already made provision for his beloved daughters Mary Field the wife of Thomas Phillpotts and Jane Alexander, the wife of Hon. Henry Cox by way of £20,000 invested in a mortgage secured on George Walmsley's Bolesworth Castle (the trustees were Charles Horsfall and Thomas Berry Horsfall), further secured by various life insurance policies in George Walmsley totalling £20,000, and he left the two daughters £500 each. He forgave £1000 of the £5000 owed him by Thomas Phillpotts of Tavistock Square. After legacies of £100 each to his grandchildren, he left his residuary estate to his son Isaac Scott Hodgson.


B.W. Higman Plantation Jamaica p. 86.

  1. James Hakewill, A Picturesque Tour of the Island of Jamaica (London, 1825). p. 13; Royal Gazette (Jamaica), 01/07/1826 and 22/12/1827; Kentish Weekly Post, 30/05/1837.

  2. Jamaica Almanac, 1790 and 1802; Royal Gazette (Jamaica), 20/1/1816; Abstract of the Report of the Lords Committees on the Condition and Treatment of the Colonial Slaves (1833) (published for the Society for the Abolition of Slavery), p.10.

  3. Morning Advertiser, 21/08/1834.

  4. Familysearch.org, Jamaica Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880 [database online]; Chester Chronicle, 11/08/1831.

  5. PROB 11/1881/316.

We are grateful to Paul Hitchings for his assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

Jane Sarah Tracy
Isaac Scott

Associated Claims (19)

£849 5s 5d
Awardee (Executor or executrix)
£1,816 13s 11d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£1,235 14s 0d
Awardee (Trustee)
£2,929 7s 11d
Awardee (Executor or executrix)
£1,716 2s 6d
Awardee (Judgement creditor)
£699 5s 6d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£3,453 7s 4d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£723 14s 7d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£201 2s 11d
£3,537 10s 0d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£3,762 13s 10d
Awardee (Judgement creditor)
£208 6s 10d
£6,121 10s 10d
Awardee (Judgement creditor)
£2,726 2s 5d
Awardee (Owner-in-fee)
£638 4s 0d
Awardee (Mortgagee)
£3,077 0s 6d
Awardee (Mortgagee)
£322 15s 3d
£87 9s 4d
£31 5s 11d

Associated Estates (21)

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
1831 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Owner
1817 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Trustee
1834 [EA] - → Executor
1834 [EA] - → Mortgage Holder
1829 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Owner
1803 [EA] - 1805 [LA] → Joint owner
1803 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Joint owner
1817 [EA] - 1832 [LA] → Receiver
1829 [EA] - → Executor
1826 [EA] - 1829 [LA] → Agent
1817 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Owner

Shown in the compensation records as 'owner-in-fee and tenant for life', presumably of different groups of enslaved people on the estate.

1808 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Mortgage Holder
1808 [EA] - → Judgement creditor
1834 [EA] - → Owner
1823 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Trustee and Executor
1817 [EA] - → Attorney
1815 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Owner
1810 [EA] - 1834 [LA] → Owner

Shown in the compensation records as 'owner-in-fee and tenant for life', presumably of different groups of enslaved people on the estate.

1829 [EA] - → Executor
1829 [EA] - → Other
1820 [EA] - → Executor

Legacies Summary

Physical (1)

Country house
Bolesworth Castle 
description →
According to his will made in 1833 Abraham Hodgson in order to provide for his two daughters had invested £20,000 on mortgage to George Walmsley secured on Bolesworth Castle and on £20,000 in 5...
notes →
There seems no authoritative account of George Walmsley and the building of Bolesworth...

Relationships (6)

Father → Son
Father-in-law → Son-in-law
Notes →
Hon. Henry Cox was shown in the will of Abraham Hodgson made in 1833 and proved in 1837 as his son-in-law, husband of Hodgson's daughter Jane...
First Cousins
Father-in-law → Son-in-law
Son-in-law → Mother-in-law
Executor → Testator