Hon. John Cunningham

1738 - 1812


Major Jamaican slave-owner; the compensation for his estates was awarded to his sons James, George and Samuel Cunningham (each of whom q.v.). His personalty on death was £140,060 according to his probate inventory.

"The parish of St James Montego Bay. 'The Hon John Cunningham Esq., Member of Assembly, born at Kirknewton, Scotland 1738. He married Elizabeth, relict of Robert Westland, and died in 1812. Erected by his sons James, Samuel and George'. He acquired Maxfield estate of which he had been the attorney for the Hodges family. 'John, eldest son of John and Elizabeth Cunningham ob. 1804' 'Mrs Elizabeth Cunningham ob. 1808' (Archer, 318, 319)".

The following children were baptised to John and Elizabeth Cunningham in St James: John (1775), Margaret (1777), James (1779), Samuel (1781), William (1783), Mary (1785), Catharine (1787), George (1788) and Jane (1794). Margaret Cunnningham later married William Taylor senior of Troqueerholm (q.v.).


Christer Petley (2014) 'Plantations and Homes: The Material Culture of the Early Nineteenth-Century Jamaican Elite', Slavery & Abolition: A Journal of Slave and Post-Slave Studies, 35:3, 437-457; the personalty is shown at p. 440.

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), Vol. 2, p. 18.

Familysearch.org, Jamaica Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880 [database online].

We are grateful to Oliver Fowler and Suzanne Francis-Brown for their assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

Elizabeth Westland
James; Samuel; George

Associated Estates (7)

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
1800 [EA] - 1812 [EY] → Owner
- 1812 [EY] → Owner
1812 [EA] - 1817 [LA] → Previous owner
1812 [EA] - → Previous owner

Possibly part-owned by John Cunningham until his death in 1812

1815 [EA] - 1817 [LA] → Previous owner
- 1812 [EY] → Owner
1809 [EA] - 1809 [LA] → Owner

Relationships (5)

Father → Son
Father → Son
Father → Son
Father-in-law → Son-in-law
Grandfather → Grandson

Addresses (1)

Kirknewton, West Lothian, Central Scotland, Scotland