James Ricketts

???? - 1825


Slave-owner in Jamaica, co-owner and then owner of Ridgland estate.

  1. James and his brothers William, Jacob and John inherited Ridgland estate in the will of their father (proved in 1760). William and Jacob may have died young; Ridgland was owned by John and James 1787-1810 and by James solely 1811-1823.

  2. James Ricketts of Abyssinia New Jersey and Ridgland married Sarah Livingston around the outbreak of the American Revolution.

  3. A portrait of Captain James Ricketts, his wife nee Sarah Livingston (1755-1827) and their daughter Maria Eliza Penn, by Daniel Gardner was sold by Sotheby's in 2012. "Best known for his small scale portraits, Gardner depicts here the young family of Captain James Ricketts (1754-1825). A captain in the 60th Royal American Regiment of Foot, Ricketts and his family lived on his estate, Ridgeland, in Jamaica during the American Revolution, where they raised their family. His wife, Sarah Livingston, came from a prominent New York family and was the daughter of Peter van Brugh Livingston (1710-1792), a wealthy merchant who served as the first New York State Treasurer. The Livingston family, who migrated from Scotland to New York during the seventeenth century, were heavily involved in political circles, and Philip Livingston (1716-1778), grandfather of Sarah Livingston, signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776. The couple are shown here with their eldest surviving daughter, Maria Eliza (1783-1865)."

  4. James Livingston, son of James Ricketts and Sarah Alexandra his wife, born 27/07/1778 and baptised 15/03/1779 in Westmoreland, Jamaica; Maria Elizabeth Penn Ricketts, daughter of James and Sarah Ricketts, was baptised in Marylebone in 1783.

  5. The will of James Ricketts of Elizabeth Town was written in 1825 and proved that same year by Sarah, his widow, who was also the sole legatee of "all my estates in the Island of Jamaica and in the United States of America".


  1. See separate entry for William Ricketts of Ridgeland and Elizabeth Town, New Jersey, for a transcription of his will. See also estate information for Ridgeland.

  2. Familysearch.org, Jamaica Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880 [database online]; Arthur Lowndes (ed.) Article of the General Convention: Vol. III The Correspondence of John Henry Hobart 1802-1804 p. 345.

  3. https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2017/collections-l17305/lot.64.html [accessed 20/12/2021].

  4. Ancestry.com, London, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database online].

  5. Ancestry.com, New Jersey, U.S., Wills and Probate Records, 1739-1991 [database online].

We are very grateful to Pamela Miller for her assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

Sarah Livingston
James Livingston (1779-), Maria Eliza Penn (1783-)

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
1811 [EA] - 1825 [LA] → Owner
1787 [EA] - 1810 [LA] → Joint owner

Relationships (4)

Son → Father
Grandson → Grandfather
Grandson → Grandmother

Addresses (2)

Abyssinia, New Jersey, USA - United States of America
Elizabeth, New Jersey, USA - United States of America