Charles Oswin

14th May 1757 - 30th Nov 1831

Claimant or beneficiary


Charles Oswin was a London merchant, partner in William Pollard, Oswin & Co., and possibly the same man as the Charles Oswin or Oswan who was an attorney in Jamaica in the early 1790s. Mary Catherine Oswin, widow of of Charles Oswin, was party to the Chancery suit of Oswin v Shand, into which the compensation for the Belmont estate and other estates belonging to William Shand in Jamaica was paid. Charles Oswin had been a creditor of William Shand.

  1. Charles Thomas Oswin, born 14/05/1757 and baptised 15/06/1757 in Haddenham, Cambridgeshire, son of Rev Richard Oswin and his wife Elizabeth nee Newnham. His parents married 04/05/1752 in Merton, Surrey.

  2. Charles Oswin was a vestryman and a fire warden in Kingston in 1790 and an assistant judge or magistrate in Kingston and a lieutenant in the militia in 1796. He was a master in ordinary in the court of chancery in Jamaica in 1808. He was also listed as a magistrate and a vestryman in St Catherine in 1817.

  3. Charles Oswin Esquire, bachelor, of St Marylebone, married Mary Catharine Smith, spinster of St Luke Chelsea, by licence in Marylebone, 07/02/1816. The service was conducted by Rev. Edward Ward, though he wasn't vicar of the parish.

  4. Charles Oswin was buried 05/12/1831 in Iver, Buckinghamshire. The vicar of Iver at the time was Rev. Edward Ward, an anti-slavery campaigner. The connection between the Oswins and Rev. Ward is seen in the will of Frederick Thomas Smith of Sloane Square, brother of Mary Catherine, who in his will proved in 1849 bequeathed 5 guineas each to Rev. Edward Ward of Iver and Charles Oswin of Harley Street (the Oswin's adopted son). Mary Catherine Oswin was also his executrix and received in her brother's will £500, a table clock, old-fashioned china, the family bible and prayer book, the family picture, the mahogany chest, pianoforte and writing desk.

  5. Will of Charles Oswin of Englefield Green Surrey proved 29/12/1831. The will identified his wife as Mary Catherine Oswin and his brother as Richard, and provided for his adopted son Charles Oswin, a dentist of Harley Street, and the latter's children. His adopted son may be his natural son.


  1., England, Select Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 [database online];, Surrey, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database online].

  2. Jamaica Almanacs (1790, 1796, 1808, 1817).

  3., London, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754-1932 [database online].

  4., England Deaths & Burials 1538-1991 [database online]; Robert Isaac Wilberforce and Samuel Wilberforce, The Life of William Wilberforce (1838) vol. 4 p. 195; PROB 11/2087/118.

  5. PROB 11/1793/134. According to later censuses, Charles Oswin junior was born c. 1802 in Southgate, Middlesex. A land tax entry for 1801 gives Charles senior in Edmonton (of which Southgate is a part). Email from Linda Hall 09/06/2020: "He clearly paid him a good deal of attention as he made sure that he received a good education. Charles of Harley St died in 1890 and his obituary says he was the son of a West India merchant. 'As soon as he left school he was apprenticed to Sir John Chapman, Surgeon Apothecary to the Household of George IV, at Windsor Castle, and finished his pupilage under Mr Rumsey, of Beaconsfield. He then entered St George's Hospital as house-pupil of Sir Benjamin Brodie.' This was presumably enabled by the connections of Charles of Jamaica. Charles of Harley Street became a surgeon-dentist, went bankrupt, became a farmer in Kent, emigrated to America and farmed in Wisconsin, came back when his wife died and returned to Hawkhurst, Kent where he became involved with the local lunatic asylum and married the owner's daughter who was half his age."

We are grateful to Linda Hall for her assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information

Name in compensation records
Chas. Oswin
Mary Catherine Smith

Associated Claims (1)

£3,187 15s 4d
Beneficiary deceased (Judgement creditor)

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
Judgement creditor
1791 [EA] - 1792 [LA] → Attorney

Tentative association only

Legacies Summary

Commercial (1)

Name partner
William Pollard, Oswin & Co.
General overseas merchant?  

Relationships (1)

Deceased Husband → Widow

Addresses (1)

Englefield Green, Surrey , South-east England, England