Major John Matthew Williams

No Dates

Claimant or beneficiary


Major John Matthew Williams of Stanley House Kings Road counterclaimed apparently unsucessfully for the compensation for the enslaved people on two estates on Nevis, on Clay Gut as heir at law of Joseph [sic] Williams and on Colhoun's as [holder of the] equity of redemption under mortgage. David Small and Christian Eickelmann identify him as the son of John Williams the younger (q.v.) and Mary, who remarried to John Bindley after the death of John Williams the younger in 1793.

  1. John Mathew [sic] Williams was party to a power of attorney of 1794, when he was given as of Great Dallington Northants. The power of attorney, jointly with John Bindley (his step-father), rehearsed the marriage settlement of his mother Mary Charlotte Thornhill nee More with his father John Williams the younger of 1766, and the release in 1769 of property including enslaved people in St Kitts belonging to John Williams the elder and their replacement by an estate given as Mirtins [sic] Bay on Nevis as substitute security for her annuity of £500 p.a. payable on the death of her husband John Williams the younger. At 21 John Mathew Williams became the tenant in tail of the estate and moved to end the entail.

  2. In 1795 William Nodes and John Sydenham two creditors in Northamptonshire who had lent him £1100 described him as in the custody of Marshalsea, the debtors prison in London.

  3. To date nothing further has been traced of him in Britain, beyond the fact that a Major John Matthew Williams was a member of a committee in London set up to organise a subscription for a service of plate for Queen Caroline in 1820. The will of a John Williams, Major in the Royal Marines of Cheltenham Gloucestershire was proved in 1851 but shows no evidence of West Indian property or connections. Similarly, nothing has been traced of Joseph Williams on Nevis. The will of a Joseph Williams planter of Antigua was proved in 1817: the will shows no evidence of property on Nevis. According to Vere Langford Oliver, a memorial to Joseph Williams on Williams' estate in Antigua shows him dying in 1814 aged 54.

  4. In a possible connection, Job Ede (q.v.), who was a claimant on one of the same estates on Nevis, had married Miss Williams, daughter of Lieut-Colonel W[illiams] of Falmouth 1813. His wife Catherine Maria was the grandniece and 'adopted daughter' of Mrs Bulkeley of Sidney Pl. Bath, according to the latter's will (as Catherine Eycott Bulkeley widow of Bath), which shows her bequests to her nephew Henry Williams 'of Falmouth', great-nephew Henry Williams a Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery, her grandniece Catherine Maria Ede, and her late husband as John Bulkeley Coventry, son of William Earl of Coventry. Her will however is silent on property on Nevis.


T71/882 Nevis nos. 35 (Clay Gut) and 129 (Colhoun's). He also filed a counterclaim in error for (or it was recorded in error under) Bowins estate, T71/882 Nevis no. 130; David Small and Christine Eickelmann's 'Clifton Estate, Nevis: an Account of Absence and Ambition' [accessed 29/11/2017].

  1. Common Records 1794-1797, British Library, EAP794/1/1/25, pp. 315-322.

  2. Common Records 1794-1797, British Library, EAP794/1/1/25, pp. 330-331.

  3. The Report of a Committee appointed by a public meeting held at the Crown & Anchor Tavern in the Strand on the 23rd day of August 1820...' (London: J. Griffin, 1820); PROB 11/2131/335; PROB 11/1596/72; Vere Langford Oliver, Caribbeana Vol I p. 180.

  4. Will of Catherine Eycott Bulkeley widow of Bathwick proved 30/06/1819, PROB 11/1617/416.

Further Information


Associated Claims (2)

£2,328 7s 7d
Unsuccessful claimant (Heir-at-law)
£2,416 18s 9d
Unsuccessful claimant

Associated Estates (1)

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
1794 [EA] - 1794 [LA] → Tenant-in-tail or Remainderman

Relationships (2)

Son → Mother
Son → Father
Notes →
Tentative relationship...

Addresses (2)

Great Dallington, Northamptonshire, Central England, England
Stanley House, Kings Road, Chelsea, London, Middlesex, London, England