Horatio Swaby

1816 - 17th Oct 1889


Son of John Swaby and Ann Eliza French. Baptised in Manchester 04/04/1819, aged 3 years, where his mother's name was given as Ann French. Note however that according to a death notice in the Daily Gleaner, he was born 05/06/1817 so would have been under 2 years of age at baptism; the same source states 'he was educated in Yorkshire and subsequently at a College in Paris. He returned to Jamaica in 1842, and took up residence at the place of his birth.' Half-brother of James Swaby (q.v.). Magistrate of Mandeville, Manchester, in 1861. Married Louisa Robertson Palache 01/05/1883; they had two children: Vera Caroline Palache Swaby (unnamed female child born 1884) and Horatio Glanville Swaby born 1886. Died 17/10/1889 at Spur Tree, Manchester, aged 72 years (this would correspond to his birth in 1817). Described as 'Justice of the Peace' on his death certificate. Described as 'a Graduate of Cambridge University and... an accomplished classical scholar, a delightful companion, and a passionate lover of horses and horse-racing...' in another death notice, also in the Gleaner, however he does not appear in Venn's Alumni Cantabrigienses.

Horatio Swaby was also the father of a number of 'natural' children, six of whom are mentioned in his will: Charles Mahon, James Henry and Willoughby Swaby who inherited Birnam estate; Frances Alice (born 16/02/1857, mother's name Rennetta Plummer), Georgiana Maud (born 22/12/1867) and Agnes Caroline Swaby (born 18/05/1873, mother's name Henrietta Plummer) who inherited Gutters estate (after the death of Renetta Plummer, subject to their leading 'virtuous lives'). Rennetta/Henrietta is assumed to be the same person, as is Benetta Plummer mentioned below.

Other illegitimate children not mentioned in the will are: Sarah Louise Swaby (born 11/05/1854, based on her father's name Horatio Swaby on her marriage certificate from 1887 and her abode as Spur Tree); Eliza Ann Swaby (born 31/12/1859, baptised 30/06/1850, mother's name Benetta Plummer); Susanah Agnes Swaby (born 13/07/1859, mother's name Ann Kingston); Ellen Henrietta Swaby (born 31/12/1859, mother's name Henrietta Plummer); and Ruth Irene Swaby (based on her father's name given on her marriage in 1891 and her abode as Gutters, possibly the Ruth Swaby born 31/08/1864 and baptised the following year in Manchester).

Joseph Alexander Swaby, born 29/01/1854, son of Horatio Swaby and Eveline his wife, abode Spur Tree, was baptised in Manchester 04/02/1855, possibly the child of an earlier marriage.

Horatio Swaby's wife Louisa Robertson died in Jamaica 21/03/1936 age 93 years.


Email from David J. P. Wood, 27/04/2015 including copies of birth and death certificates, photo of gravestone and copy of will; Daily Gleaner 21/10/1889 and 23/10/1889.

See entry for Ann Eliza French for an account of the baptisms of the children of Ann Eliza French and John Swaby.

Familysearch.org, Jamaica Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880 [database online] for the baptisms and marriages of his children.

Daily Gleaner 25/03/1936, supplied by David Wood: SWABY, Louisa Robertson.— On 21st March in her 93rd year/Widow of the late Horatio Swaby of Spur Tree and beloved mother of Horatio Swaby and Vera Mould. (Vera married Thomas Rawlings Mould 05/03/1905.)

We are grateful to David J. P. Wood for his assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

Louisa Robertson Palache
Vera Caroline Palache (1884-), Horatio Glanville (1886-1962). At least 11 other children, see main text for details

Copy of will provided by David Wood.

This is the last will and testament of me Horatio Swaby of Spur Tree in the parish of Manchester Esquire. I hereby nominate constitute and appoint my wife Louisa Robertson Swaby and John Thomson Palache to be the executors and trustees of this my will and the guardians of any children. I give devise and bequeath unto my executors and trustees hereinbefore named all the real and personal estate which shall at my decease be vested in me as mortgagee or trustee in for upon such trusts and subject to such equities as shall at my decease be subjecting conveyancing the same respectively. I give and devise to my natural son Charles Mahon Swaby all the unsold portions of 'Punch Bowl' and all balances due for purchase money of lands sold and all the estate and interest whatsoever which I have in such lands. And I direct my executors and trustees to allot to him a piece of land part of 'Spur Tree' not exceeding four acres for him to work a residence on it for his use for ever. I devise my property 'Birnam' to my three natural sons the said Charles Mahon Swaby, James Henry Swaby and Willoughby Swaby their heirs and assigns forever as tenants in common. I devise my property 'Newark' to my executors and trustees aforesaid upon trust to manage and carry on the same and if necessary to sell or mortgage and to apply to proceeds in and towards the support and maintenance of my wife Louisa Robertson Swaby and my children Vera Caroline Palache Swaby and Horatio Glanvil Swaby until the death or marriage of my said wife whichever shall first happen and there after for the support of my said children until the youngest of them shall attain the age of twenty one years then upon trust to the use of my said children their heirs and assigns for ever as tenants in common. I devise my property called 'Gutters' to Renetta[?] Plummer for her natural life and from and immediately after the death of the said Renetta Plummer unto my three natural daughters viz:- Frances Alice Swaby, Georgiana Maud Swaby and Agnes Caroline Swaby so long as they remain unmarried and continue to lead virtuous lives and upon the marriage or departure from the paths of virtue of any one or either of my said daughters the share of such daughter in the 'Gutters' shall thereupon cease and determine my intentions being that the said property 'Gutters' shall remain and be a home to my said daughters who may not[?]ary so long as they remain virtuous. All the rest residue and remainder of my said estate I give devise and bequeath unto my trustees and executors aforesaid upon trust for my wife and children aforesaid during the life of my said wife and as long as she remains unmarried and from and immediately after her death or marriage upon trust for my said children until the youngest attains the age of twenty one years then to be equally divided between them share and share alike as tenants in common. And it is my will that in the event of the marriage of my said wife she shall cease to be the executrix and trustee of this my will and guardian of my children provided always. And I hereby declare my will to be that if the trustees hereby appointed or either of them or any trustee to be appointed or hereinafter is mentioned shall die or desire to be discharged from or decline to or become [?] to act in the trusts hereby reposed in him or her then and so often as it shall so happen it shall be lawful for the remaining or continuing trustee and for this purpose a disclaiming refusing or retiring trustee if willing to act in the execution of this power shall be considered a continuing trustee or for the acting executors or administrators of the last surviving or continuing trustee by any such duty exceeded by or her to appoint a person to be a trustee in place of the trustee as dying disclaiming refusing or becoming in[?]able to act as aforesaid. And that upon every such appointment the trust estate moneys and premises shall be conveyed assigned and transferred so and in such a manner that the same may become vested in the surviving or continuing trustee or in such new trustee solely as the case may require. And that every trustee as appointed as aforesaid either before or after the trust provisions shall have been so vested as aforesaid act or assist with the executions of the trusts and powers in respect of which he shall be so appointed as trustee as fully and effectually and with the same powers authority and discretion as if he had been originally nominated a trustee in this my will provided also and I hereby declare that the trustees hereby appointed or to be appointed by virtue of the powers hereinbefore contained shall be charged or chargeable only [?] stocks funds and investments as they shall respectively actually receive by virtue of the trusts in them hereby reposed. Notwithstanding they shall give in any receipt after the [?] of conformity. And that the one shall not be answerable for the other or for the acts receipts neglects or defaults of the other but make only for his own acts receipts neglects and defaults and that they shall not be answerable for my banker broker or other person with whom my trust moneys or securities may be deposited nor for the inefficiency of any stocks funds or securities nor for any other loss unless the same shall happen through their own selfish default respectively and also that it shall be lawful for them with and out of the moneys that shall come to their hands by virtue of the trusts aforesaid to retain and reimburse himself or themselves and allow to his co. trustee to pay and discharge out of the said trust premises all such charges and expenses as they shall or may [?]tain expend or be put to in or about the execution of the trusts in them hereby reposed or in any wise relating thereto. In witness whereof I the said Horatio Swaby here to this my last will and testament contained in this and the three preceeding pages not my hand this twelfth day of October one thousand eight hundred and eighty [?].

Signed and acknowledged by the after named testator Horatio Swaby as his last will and testament in the presence of us present at the same time and who in his presence and in the presence of each other have herein also subscribed our names as witnesses.

Horatio Swaby R. [?] A. Robertson

This is the will of Horatio Swaby referred to in the affadavit of Louisa Robertson Swaby as thereinto named sworn before me this 30th day of October 1889 Louisa R. Swaby Atty [?]

This is the will of Horatio Swaby referred to in the affadavit of John Thomson Palache as thereinto annexed sworn before me this 28th day of October 1889 J. Thomson Palache Frank H. [?]

This is the will of Horatio Swaby referred to in the affadavit of [?] Robertson thereinto annexed sworn before me this 28th day of October 1889 A. Robertson Frank H. [?]


Relationships (9)

Natural Son → Mother
Nephew → Aunt
Natural Son → Father
First Cousins
First Cousins
Nephew → Uncle
Grandson → Grandfather
Nephew → Uncle