Duncan Campbell of Bedford Square

26th Jun 1761 - 1815


Duncan Campbell of Bedford Square was the owner of estates in Grenada and Tobago as well as Demerara and was certainly the father-in-law of Alex. Young Spearman (q.v.) and the father of Thomas Edmund Campbell, in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography as 'military officer, secretary, politician, seigneur of Rouville.'

  1. Duncan, son of Alexander Campbell, Esquire, Provost of Renfew, and his wife Ann Somervell [sic] was born 26/06/1761 and baptised 30/06/1761 in Renfrew, Scotland. Duncan Campbell, late of Grenada, married Miss Young, of Grafton Street, Fitzroy Square, 29/12/1798.

  2. Will of Duncan Campbell of Bedford Square proved 06/03/1815. He was described as 'of Inverawe, Argyll' in the ODNB entry for Alex. Young Spearman. He descended from the Campbell of Inverawe line: his father was Alexander Campbell 11th Laird and his brother Archibald Campbell of Blackhouse. His wife was the daughter of Robert Young of Auchenskeoch.

  3. The identities of his estates are still being unpicked. While he at one stage appears to have owned Invera and Argyle in Tobago, the linked estates were in the hands of James Campbell of Grenada and Tobago by the time of the latter's death in 1805. Duncan Campbell's will refers (without specifying them) to estates 'he was possessed of or interested in' in Demerara, Tobago and Grenada, and among the executors was James Baillie of Bedford Square, as well as Archibald Campbell, his brother. His wife was identified as Harriet, and his partners as Alexander Baillie and Duncan Campbell the younger, his nephew. It appears clear that he was the man of the same name who partnered with Edmund Thornton and James Baillie in place of Thomas Campbell; if his birth-date of 1761 given in secondary sources is correct, then he would have been young to have been the original grantee of the land for Invera and Argyle on Tobago.

  4. Note that note that the will of Archibald Campbell of Blackhouse (12th of Inverawe) included a bequest of £20,000 to "the children of my late brother, Duncan Campbell Esquire of Bedford Square, London" of which £12,000 should go to the eldest son age age 21 years. A codicil dated 02/02/1824 noted the death of Duncan Campbell's eldest son Duncan and rehearsed that the £12,000 was now due to the next eldest son James, and in default to the next brother Edmund then the youngest brother Augustus.


Jacques Monet, 'Campbell, Thomas Edmund' Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol. X (1871-1880). The entry is silent on Campbell's family background.

  1. CROS OPR Births 575 20 79; Vere Langford Oliver, Caribbeana being miscellaneous papers relating to the history, genealogy, topography, and antiquities of the British West Indies (6 vols., London, Mitchell, Hughes and Clarke, 1910-1919) 2:118 sourced to GM 1151.

  2. PROB 11/1566/80; Alastair Campbell A history of Clan Campbell: Vol. 3 From restoration to the present day (Edinburgh University Press, 2004 reprinted 2006), p. 216.

  3. PROB 11/1566/80.

  4. SC58/42/2 Paisley Sheriff Court.

We are grateful to David Alston and Irene Innes for their assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

Harriet Young
Henrietta Harriet; Duncan; Jane; James Archibald; Thomas Edmund; Augustus

PROB 11/1566/80 - precis.

Duncan Campbell of Bedford Square Esquire.

To my dear wife Harriet Campbell my lease house in Bedford Square where I now reside and the coach houses, stables and the contents of the house.

By my marriage settlement I contracted to pay her an annuity of £500 per annum in case she should survive me. I am possessed of or entitled to or interested in certain plantations in Demerara, Tobago and Grenada, or elsewhere in America, and I am also entitled to diverse sums of money secured by mortgage judgement or otherwise in the said colonies and elsewhere, and whereas there are diverse sums of money due and owing to or from me in respect of my partnership with my nephew Duncan Campbell the younger Esquire and Alexander Baillie Esquire and otherwise.

All my estate, real and personal to my dear wife, James Baillie of Bedford Square Esquire, my brother Archibald Campbell and my nephew Duncan Campbell the younger upon trust that they shall with all convenient speed after my decease sell my plantations. From the proceeds to pay all legacies hereinafter mentioned and to lay out and invest the residue in the names of them or of my dear wife in the purchase of parliamentary stocks or funds of Great Britain upon Government or real securities in England.

My wife to take from the interest £2,000 per annum for life for her own use and benefit in full satisfaction of her dower.

To Jane, daughter of my late sister Jane Campbell of Greenock, Scotland, £100 per annum for life.

To Eliza Young, spinster sister of my dear wife, £100 per annum for life.

To Margaret Heriot, spinster aunt of my dear wife, £100 per annum for life.

To Mary Byles, now residing at Bristol, the widow of Mathew Byles, late of the island of Grenada, £100 per annum for life.

The annuities to Jane Campbell, Eliza Young, Margaret Heriot and Mary Byles to be void if made subject to mortgage. Rest and residue of the trust to my children Henrietta Harriot Campbell, Duncan Campbell, Jane Campbell, James Archibald Campbell, Thomas Edmund Campbell and Augustus Campbell equally at age 21 or (if earlier for daughters) at marriage.

To my nephew Duncan Campbell, £2,000.

To my friends Kenneth Francis Mackenzie, now resident in Perthshire, Patrick Bartlet of Nottingham Place, Middlesex, Esquire, John Stewart of Albany, Middlesex, Esquire, and my friend and partner Alexander Baillie £100 each as a mark of my esteem. To my friends the said James Baillie and Edmund Thornton Esquire and my brother Archibald Campbell I decline offereing them any other legacy than a ring as a mark of my esteem and regard for them.

It shall be lawful for my trustees to appropriate for any of the annuities bequeathed in my will a sum of money as shall yield an income sufficient to meet the annuities; then the residue of the trust fund shall be discharged from the said annuities.

Trustees to be executors and guardians of my children in their minorities.

Signed 31/01/1815.

Proved at London 06/03/1815 by Harriet Campbell, James Baillie Esquire and Duncan Campbell Esquire.

West India merchant and plantation owner

Associated Estates (2)

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
1817 [EA] - 1817 [LA] → Owner

Tentative assocation only at present

1798 [EA] - 1798 [LA] → Joint owner

Legacies Summary

Commercial (1)

Name partner
Baillie, Thornton & Campbell
West India merchant  

Relationships (7)

Father-in-law → Son-in-law
Business partners
Uncle → Nephew
Uncle → Nephew
Notes →
Tentatively inferred by...
Son-in-law → Father-in-law

Addresses (2)

Renfrew, Renfrewshire, Central Scotland, Scotland
Bedford Square, London, Middlesex, London, England