Boswell Brandon Beddome and family

Boswell Brandon Beddome (1763-1816) was a son of Rev. Benjamin Beddome. Boswell married Anne Wilkins in 1786 (see the Wilkins family).

In this website, I am mostly following my direct ancestors, such as Samuel Beddome, the brother of Boswell Brandon Beddome. Still, there are some interesting snippets about Boswell and his children, which I can't resist adding here. This is not supposed to be a definitive account of his or their lives, or indeed include all his children.

FatherBoswell Brandon BeddomeMerchant1763-1816
SonDr. John Reynolds BeddomeMayor of Romsey1787-1859
SonWilliam Wilkins BeddomeMerchant1788-1858
DaughterAnne Beddome1789-????
SonSamuel BeddomeChemist1791-1866
DaughterJane Beddome1792-????
SonBoswell Brandon Beddome JnrMerchant1794-1834
DaughterSophia Beddome1795-????
Other pages of interest

Will of Boswell Brandon Beddome
Family bible of Boswell Brandon Beddome
Samuel Favell
Samuel Beddome, the brother of Boswell senior
Burdett riots

I am not going to cover his daughters, Jane Beddome and Sophia Beddome. They are mentioned in the will of their father - see below.

Boswell Brandon Beddome senior

The family bible of Boswell Brandon Beddome says that his four oldest children (John, william, Anne and Samuel) were born in Nailworth, near Bourton-on-the-water, which suggestes that Boswell Brandon Beddome started living near his father, Rev. Benjamin Beddome. Samuel was born in 1791. However, the younger children were born in London, starting with Jane Beddome, born at 170, Fenchurch Street, in 1792, which suggests a move to London. The earliest account of Rev. Benjamin Beddome's life, published very soon after he died, said that "He was in London to see his children and friends in 1792". I suspect that this was part of the events just before his death, which was why it was included, although every subsequent account carefully incuded it! But it shows that "his children" (or at least some of them) were in London. It sounds as if this visit was shortly after Boswell's move to London, possibly to help settle him in, or for Rev. Benjamin Beddome to see his new grand-daughter. Rev. Benjamin Beddome died in 1795, and in his will, he says "Besides six Hundred pounds which I have already given to my son Boswell I give twelve Hundred pounds more, one moiety or half of which being lent to him he hath already in his hands." Perhaps the money was to set him up in his new career in London. Boswell would have been 32 years old at the time.

Kent's Directory for the Year 1794 for Southwark mentions two businesses involving Beddomes, both merchants, working in Southwark:

Beddome, Fish & Co. Woollen drapers, 170, Fenchurch st.
Beddome Samuel. Mercht. 3, Long lane, Southwark

Bourton on the Water Bank note payable to Messrs. Beddome, Fysh and Co, Fenchurch St, 1812.
Supplied by the Chairman of the Bourton on the Water Local History Society - thank you!
bank note

Boswell Brandom Beddome married Anne Wilkins, and his brother, Samuel Beddome married Jane Wilkins of Cirencester. Hewitt Fysh of Camberwell (1767-1811) was, by 1792, already a junior partner in Beddome, Fysh & Co., drapers in Fenchurch Street, London. He married Mary Wilkins (1756-1804) in Cirencester in 1793, and when she died, "letters of administration granted March 1818, to Jane Beddome, widow, the natural and lawful sister". That seems likely that all three were sisters, and what's more, their brother was Rev. Wilkins of Cirencester, who was co-pastor of Rev. Benjamin Beddome at Bourton-on-the-Water. See the Wilkins family for more details. However, the relevant question at the moment is: who is the Beddome of "Beddome, Fish & Co. Woollen drapers" at Fenchurch Street? Was it Boswell Brandon Beddome or his brother Samuel? "Beddome, Fish & Co" had become "Favell, Beddome & David" at the same address by 1817. Samuel Favell married the sister of Boswell and Samuel, and obviously entered into partnership with one of them, but which?

The inscription on the back of a family picture of Samuel Favell claims that third of Samuel Beddome's property came from Samuel Favell, (see full inscription), which seems to suggest that it is Samuel rather than Boswell who is Samuel Favell's partner. But that is a late record, made by Samuel Charlesworth, the grandson of Samuel Beddome, and he might have got it wrong. He seems to be a bit unreliable!

The family bible of Boswell Brandon Beddome says that his daughter Jane Beddome was born at 170, Fenchurch Street. This is the address of the business of Favell, Beddome & David. At this point, the Beddomes were obviously living "above the shop" although later on they moved out to more salubrious housing. There are other references to Boswell's address. For example, Mr. B.B.Beddome, Fenchurch St is given as a subscriber to two books, a book of sermons in 1801 and a book of poems in 1813. His son William is also described as being in Fenchurch Street.

Kent's Directory for the Year 1794 for Southwark also gives "Favell & Bousfield, Slop sellers, 247, Tooley street". There is a letter to the Times from Samuel Beddome of 249 Tooley Street dated 1822 (see below). This is not Boswell's brother Samuel who had died by then. It is likely to be Boswell's son, and he is living next door to Samuel Favell's business.

This shows that two of the Directors of the Union Fire Office elected in 1810 were B.B. Beddome and Sam Favell. This is surely Boswell Brandon Beddome, and shows another close connection. (It isn't his son, who would be, I think, too young at this time.) There is a reference in Post-Office Annual Directory for 1814 for the same post, althought it's now called the Union Society.

Directors of Union Fire Office

The Beddome business at Fenchurch Street is mentioned in a Report of the Committee appointed by the Court of Lord Mayor and Aldermen - To investigate by what causes and under what Circumstances some persons were killed or wounded by the Military, on Monday the 9th of April, 1810. This is about the Burdett riots. Click here for the full report (which is a fascinating document). Here is one piece of evidence, by a clerk to Beddome, Fish and Company:
Examined 14th April: Robert Holl, of No 170, Fenchurch Street, Clerk to Beddome, Fish and Company, deposes as follows:- I was standing at the door at the troops were passing. I heard firing, and I saw smoke about half way between Mincing-lane and Rood-labe: there seemed to be about half a dozen pistols fired at once, as far as I could see, both to the right and left. There was not the least provocation offered to the soldiers. After they had turned out of Fenchurch-street into Gracehurch-street, the Rear-guard turned back and fird their pistol up the street: at this time there were not fifty people about them, who were crying shame upon them for their wanton conduct. One shot passed near Mr. Beddome and me. I saw no bricks or stones thrown.
This, apart from being an interesting account in itself, shows that 170, Fenchurch Street was still Beddome, Fish and Company in 1810. Fish died a year later, which presumably was when the other partners were brought in. "Mr. Beddome" is therefore presumably Boswell, the father.

This is the first page of the obituary of Boswell Brandon Beddome in the Baptist Magazine and Literary Review, Volume 9. The rest gives a detailed account of his death, and his state of mind at the time, which I find a little boring, so I've left it out.

obituary of Boswell Brandon Beddome

This shows that Boswell remained a Baptist, unlike Samuel Beddome, who moved to the Church of England (although a 'low church' version of it). Yet another reason to suppose that Samuel Favell, another Baptist, had Boswell as his partner, rather than Samuel.

Boswell Brandon Beddome's will is given here.

Dr. John Reynolds Beddome

From the Evangelical Magazine and Missionary Chronicle, Vol 11 (1833):
"The youngest daughter [of Dr. Winter], Rebecca, married John Reynolds Beddome, Esq., surgeon at Romsey, Hants, in the year 1813, and died on the 10th of June, 1821, aged thirty-three, leaving three children, who still survive. The two sons are Robert Winter, Esq., solicitor, Bedford Row, the valuable Secretary of the Committee of Deputies, and Thomas Bradbury, Esq., surgeon, now of Brighton.

From Parliamentary Papers, Volume 43:
Justices of the Peace (Municipal Corporations)
Return to an Address of the Honourable The House of Commons, dated 11 February 1836; for
A Return of the Persons Nominated by the Crown to act as Justices of the Peace in the Cities and Towns Corporate in England and Wales, under the Provisions of 5 & 6 Will. IV. c.76
... Romsey (Borough)
... John Reynolds Beddome, surgeon

From the London Gazette.
Newsclipping mentioning Dr. J R Beddome of Romsey

Dr. J R Beddome of Ramsey

From The Illustrated London News - supplement, April 16, 1859 - page 385:
Dr. J. R. Beddome, Mayor of Ramsey, Hampshire, whose portrait we engrave, is a medical man retired from practice. He is well known in the southern counties of England, and is much respected, not only for his professional talent, which he exercised in Ramsey for nearly half a century, but also for his great benevolence and kindness to the poor, and for his unwearied activity in promoting the interests of religion and humanity. There are few men in the part of the country in which he resides possessed of greater general influence, and there is no one more anxious to consecrate that influence to the good of the community. Dr. Beddome is a man of a catholic spirit, and is beloved by the good of all sections of the Christian church. As a proof of the esteem in which he is held by his fellow-townsmen, it may be stated that he has filled the office of Mayor six times, and is now holding that office the third successive year.

Click on picture for larger version.

The list of the Mayors of Ramsey says that he was mayor 1829, 1835, 1836 (with Joseph May), 1842, 1851, 1856, 1857, 1858. That is 8 times, including the shared one.

John Reynolds Beddome
original of the etching

John Reynolds Beddome

John Reynolds Beddome

John Reynolds Beddome

Mrs. John Reynolds Beddome

Mrs. John Reynolds Beddome

Letter from Lord Palmerstone (1784-1865)
to Dr. Beddome, who was his physician

Letter from Lord Palmerstone to Dr. Beddome

John Reynolds Beddome
family portrait

John Reynolds Beddome

his wife, Rebecca (Winter)
family portrait

Rebecca Beddome (Winter)

one of their daughters, Marianne Beddome
family portrait

Marianne Beddome

These are some references in a book called "150 Years in a Country Practice" by J.E.Rankine M.D. (1982). Click for larger version.

Info about John Reynolds Beddome

William Wilkins Beddome

William Wilkins Beddome (1788-1858) was a son of Boswell Brandon Beddome. His biography says that he was a commercial traveller when young, and that he was deacon of Maze-pond church for nearly 40 years.

The European Magazine, and London Review says Mr. W. Beddome of Fenchurch-street married Ellen, daughter of Mr. Edward Smith, of Bath-place, Peckham in June 1818.

William Beddome, Fenchurch Street was appointed a Land Tax Commissioner in 1836.

Records of Sun Fire Office of 1840 show "Messrs Favell, Beddome and Co, 170 Fenchurch Street, warehousemen" insured, which shows the business still existed at this date. This cannot be Boswell Brandon Beddome, as he is dead by this time. The Land Tax Commissioner information suggests that it is William.

"Favell, Beddome & Co. 170 Fenchurch st" is listed as a Woollen Factor in Robsons London Directory of 1842.

William Wilkins Beddome in Mystery of Fishmoners

A copy of this cewrtificate is among my parents' papers. My mother says that this is one of the prestigious Livery Companies of the City of London, founded in 14C. "William was not a fishmonger himself, but in the woollen trade. He would have joined the Fishmongers for business and social reasons."

The following account is of Mr Beddome who is a linen-draper, with a shop in Fenchurch Street. It comes from The Times, February 6, 1826. It must be William as his father was dead by this time. Sounds as if William was lucky not to be dead as well! I'm not quite sure who this Mr. Green is, a corn-merchant, nearly allied by marriage to Mr. Beddome, but "not on very amiable terms lately" (to put it mildly!)

account of shooting

A further legal case from The proceedings of the Old Bailey:

WILLIAM CLARKE, Theft > pocketpicking, 30th June 1831.
WILLIAM CLARKE was indicted for stealing, on the 15th of June , 1 handkerchief, value 3s. 6d., the goods of William Beddome , from his person.
WILLIAM BEDDOME. I am a woollen-draper , and live in Fenchurch-street. On the 15th of June, between six and seven o'clock in the evening, I was in Devonshire-street, Bishopsgate ; a person behind said, "The lad who is running away has picked your pocket;" I immediately followed the prisoner, who was two or three yards from me, and never lost sight of him - he was stopped going into Cutler-street by an officer, and at that moment I saw my handkerchief at his feet; it is silk, and has my initials on it.
Prisoner. It is quite wrong, it was not near my feet.
JOHH PARKER. I am a watchman. I saw the prosecutor running after the prisoner, crying Stop thief! - nobody else was running away; he was coming towards me - I stopped him, collared him, and saw him drop the handkerchief at that moment; Mr. Beddome claimed it.
Prisoner. Q. Did you see me throw it away? A. I saw you drop it the moment I collared you.
JOSEPH STONE. I am one of the City Police. The prisoner was given into my charge with the handkerchief.(Property produced and sworn to.)
Prisoner's Defence. I was running along - somebody said Stop thief! I ran, this man stopped me, and accused me of it; I know nothing of it.
GUILTY . Aged 18. - Transported for Life.

William Wilkins Beddome
William Wilkins Beddome

Williams Wilkins Beddome had an interesting will. It is described in the Favell wills.

Anne Beddome

Anne Beddome married Olinthus Gregory.

From the Baptist magazine (1828)
Olinthus Gregory

Olinthus Gregory (see left) was a mathematician. At 19 years old, he wrote "Lessons, Astronomical and Philosophical: for the Amusement and Instruction of British Youth: Being an Attempt to Explain and Account for the Most Usual Appearances in Nature in a Familiar Manner, From Established Principles, the Whole Interspersed With Moral Reflections." This became a popular school-book. From his biography: "In the 1826 edition of his Mechanics text he lists himself as: Corresponding Associate of the Academy of Dijon; Honorary Member of the Literary and Philosophical Society of New York; Honorary Member of the New York Historical Society; Honorary Member of the Literary and Philosophical Society of Newcastle-upon-Tyne; Honorary Member of the Antiquarian Society of Newcastle-upon-Tyne; Honorary Member of the Cambridge Philosophical Society; Honorary Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers; etc. The 'etc.' here includes honorary memberships of societies in Bristol and Paris. He was awarded an honorary M.A. by the University of Aberdeen in 1806 and an honorary LL.D. two years later. He was elected president of the Woolwich Institution for the Advancement of Literary, Scientific and Technical Knowledge from its foundation in 1838. Gregory, together with his friend Alexander John Scott, had been the founders of the Institution."

Samuel Beddome

There is a problem with the name Samuel Beddome because there are too many of them! Samuel Beddome (1756-1815) is my ancestor, and he has a son, Samuel Archdale Beddome (1791-1814). But any reference after 1815 must be another Samuel Beddome. One of the sons of Boswell Brandon Beddome was Samuel Beddome. I think the below references refer to him.

England and Wales Census, 1841 has Samuel Beddome, male, age 50 in Registration District Lambeth, Sub-District Kennington 2nd, Parish: St Mary.

John Favell's will (1830) bequeaths to "Cousin Samuel Beddome of Islington 2000 & gold snuff box". This is one of the largest bequests. John Favell's mother was Boswell Brandon's sister, so this seems to be Boswell's son.

The following is a letter written to the Times in 1822.

The Times, Saturday, Sep 21, 1822

--- Bees ---

To the Editor of the Times

Sir, - Having lately read in the very introduction to Entomology, written by Messrs. Kirby and Spence, of the great tenacity of life whch some insects possess, it has been brought to my recollection a fact that occurred three years ago, that I confess I could not have credited had it not passed under my own observation. I had purchased 290 large hives, and a hogshead of Dutch honey in the natural state, not separated from the wax, which had been in my friend's warehouse above a year; and, after emptying my hives as well as I could, I boiled them for a considerable time in water, to obtain what honey remained between the interstices. A considerable number of bees that had been mixed with the honey were floating on the surface of the water, and these skimmed off and places on the flag-stones outside my laboratory, which was at the top of the house, and then exposed to a July meridian sun. You may imagine my astonishment when, in half an hour, I saw scores of these same bees that had been for months in a state of suffocation, and then well boiled, gradually came to life and fly away. There were so many of them that I closed the door, fearing they might be disposed to return and punish me for the barbarous usage they had received at my hands.

I am, Sir, your obedient servant,

Samuel Beddome,
Chemist, 249, Tooley-street, London


The letter is fun to read in itself, but it is also interesting, since this Samuel Beddome's address is given as 249, Tooley Street. This is next door to one of the businesses of Samuel Favell, and Favell's son's bequests show that they were close to Samuel. So, let's assume that this Samuel is Boswell's son as well. This street directory is dated 1823.Tooley Street addresses

The "Bee" letter also describes Samuel Beddome as a Chemist. That leads to other references:

House of Commons Journal Volume 85: 8 April 1830 covers Licence for medicines. It includes Beddome's powders.

In the The Practical Housewife (1860):

CHOLERA AND BOWEL COMPLAINTS. " Some years ago I received from the late Dr. Beddome. of Tooley Street (the original inventor of Beddome's Powders), a recipe for bowel complaints, which I have found so uniformly successful in relieving those disorders, and perhaps warding off cholera, that I enclose it for the benefit of your numerous readers. " EGBERT BROWN, Cheapside. " Rhubarb powder, half a drachm; calcined magnesia, one drachm; paregoric elixir, one ounce; pepper mint water, half a pint. Mix and shake up, and take two table-spoonfuls every three hours till relieved. " The following is a better prescription for the same purpose: " Take of chalk mixture, eight ounces; aromatic confection, one drachm; compound tincture of camphor, three drachms; oil of carraway, three or four drops. Mix. Take two table -spoonfuls -every three hours, or oftener, if the pain and purging are urgent. A tea-spoonful is a dose for young children, and one table-spoonful for those of ten or twelve years of age.

Advertising and Satirical Culture in the Romantic Period gives the following as part of a "Parody of a Cambridge Examination Paper" in the Times, 1825: Give a ground-plan of Gilead-house. Mention the leading topics of the Guide to Health, with some account of Fothergill's Cough Pills, Daffy's Elixir, Blain's Distemper Powders, Beddome's Powders for Children, and Hooper's Female Pills.

That seems to suggest that these Powders were well known!

The Times, Jan 30, 1844

advery for Beddome's powders

The Times, Oct 21, 1848

advery for Beddome's powders

Here is an interesting clipping from the Times, Aug 3, 1825, concerning the election of Samuel Beddome to be Common Cryer and Sarjeant at Arms. Note that it is Samuel Favell who suggests the name!

Samuel Beddome - Sarjeant of arms
drawing of Samuel Beddome Sept 24, 1825
Samuel Beddome - Sarjeant of arms
Samuel Beddome - Sarjeant of arms

Sept 30, 1825
Samuel Beddome - Sarjeant of arms

So what is the Common-cryer and Sarjeant at arms? Here is a description from The History and Antiquities of London, Westminster, Southwark, and parts adjacent, by Thomas Allen, Volume 2, 1839

Samuel Beddome - Sarjeant of arms

Samuel Beddome seems to have continued in this role for many years.

From the Times, Nov 09, 1861

Samuel Beddome - Sarjeant of arms

There is a reference to the Common Crier (Mr. Beddome) in the Times, 26 June 1866, but the next Common Crier to be elected Mr John Alexander Beddome, 3 Aug 1867, "who had held it provisionally for some time.", so I'm not sure which 'Mr. Beddome' is being referred to in 1866!

The photo on the right is definitely John Alexander Beddome, the successor of Samuel Beddome. I have put it here so you can see the robes of the Common Crier, and the mace. Click on photo for larger version.

John Alexander Beddome, Common Crier
Samuel Beddome, Common Crier Samuel Beddome died in 1866.

Samuel Beddome - Probate

Samuel Beddome's poem

This poem is the PS of a letter by Samuel Beddome.

Tell Annie I mean when my mind's more at ease
To get on my hobby & ride as I please -
Or rather, to scribble nonsensical verse
To her in a letter, and should it be worse
Than I sent to her Brother, (the one who's so rich),
For the future my pen on a hook I must must hitch.
I fear I'm inferior to Milton and Watts
And scarcely can vie with the best things of Scott's.
I look down on Wordsworth & all the Lake School,
And think Robert Southey an absolute fool,
For publishing lately the "Book of the Church"
Where Dissenters are whipped with papistical birch.
His poetry's good, his history better
Though liberal notions he endeavours to fetter.

To date it, I found this on the web: "In 1824 he [Robert Southey] published 'The Book of the Church', a narrative of striking episodes in English ecclesiastical history, delightfully written, but superficial and prejudiced." The date shows that this Samuel is Boswell's son, not the older one. I think that Watts is Isaac Watts (1674-1748), an English Christian hymnwriter, theologian and logician. From the context, Samuel is talking about Scott's poetry rather than his novels.

The rest of the letter is not given (grr!) so all we have is the name Annie and her rich brother. Samuel had three daughters, and one is called Anne, but they were all born after 1824. It is more likely to be his sister Anne, who married Olinthus Gregory. I wonder who the rich brother is? It would be the brother of Samuel as well. William Wilkins Beddome ran into money troubles (see above). Boswell Brandon Beddome junior is described as being "generous almost to a fault" in his obituary. Dr. John Reynolds Beddome was a doctor, and became mayor of the town where he lived, so presumably was prosperoud. But it sounds like a 'tease', to tell the truth, so could have been any of them.

Boswell Brandon Beddome (junior)

The following is the first part of a 'memoir' of the younger Boswell Brandon Beddome, presumably just after he died. It is useful in that it mentions that his father was deacon at Maze Pond, and the hint that the rest of the family had arguments from time to time!



The highly respected subject of this memoir was the youngest son of Mr. Boswell Brandon Beddome, who for many years filled the office of a deacon at Maze Pond; and grandson of the Rev. Benjamin Beddome, of Bourton-on-the-Water, whose sermons and hymns are still the admiration of the churches. The talents and amiability of Mr. Boswell Beddome began very early to develope themselves. He is described by his surviving relatives as having been a most interesting boy; his intelligence, generosity, vivacity, and principle, inducing them to conclude that he would prove no common character in after life. The testimony given to his spirit and deportment at this early period, by his maternal guardian, is worthy of record, as it points to a striking and lovely example of filial obedience: "He never gave me a moment's uneasiness; whatever perplexity was sometimes occasioned by the rest, I had no trouble with him; affection and a sense of duty invariably induced his cheerful obedience; and if childish disputes arose between any of the other juvenile members of the family, Boswell was sure to be the peace-maker." He was educated at a school under the superintendence of the Rev. S. Palmer, of Hackney, where he was distinguished for the readiness and accuracy with which he accomplished the exercises of his class, and for that general activity of mind which afterwards became one of his leading characteristics.

When he was about fourteen years of age, a situation which promised well for his secular interests offering itself at a highly respectable mercantile establishment at Dorchester, he was removed from school somewhat sooner than his friends had anticipated. His employers speedily became sensible of the worth of his talents and integrity, and as a reward for his services and a proof of their esteem, introduced him to a valuable business at Weymouth, which happened to be at their command, two years before the legal term of his connexion with them would have expired. This movement had the most important bearing on his spiritual interests; and had he not been generous almost to a fault, would, in a few years, have been the means of procuring him a retiring competency.

The family, to the full companionship of which he was thus early introduced at Dorchester, was distinguished by its very zealous profession of Unitarianism. There he saw the system under its most specious and delusive aspect: the sabbath was observed with the strictest decorum; family worship maintained with invariable regularity; habits of private devotion were strongly encouraged; and opportunities frequently occurred of association with some of the most intelligent and influential members of the party. Under these circumstances, although matter of regret to the more judicious of his friends, it was none of surprise, that he espoused and became the ardent advocate of sentiments at total variance with those in which he had been previously trained.

Under the preaching of Mr. Rowe, the first pastor of the Baptist church at Weymouth, and afterwards under that of Mr. Flint, its second minister, he was gradually restored to the presumed scriptural faith of his venerated ancestors. The exercises of his mind on this important subject were often deeply distressing and protracted. After his suspicions respecting the correctness of his opinions were awakened, he became a most diligent, anxious, and prayerful student of the word of God; determined, by divine assistance, to follow conviction wherever it might conduct him; and profess, at whatever cost, what should eventually appear to be the truth. Desirous of doing the will of God, after many painful mental conflicts he was permitted to know it; he made a public profession, by baptism, of his newly-adopted faith during the pastorship of Mr. Hawkins, now of Derby; and about four years afterwards was invested with the office of a deacon, during the ministry of Mr. Hoby, at present of Birmingham.

That the sentiments of Mr. Beddome in after life, on some abstruse points, were not slightly modified by his previous notions, is not pretended; but that he decidedly embraced all that is fundamental in the Calvinistic system, no doubt is entertained by those who had the most ample means of obtaining an accurate knowledge of his creed. He contemplated himself as a depraved, guilty, perishing, and helpless creature; the grand doctrine of justification by grace, through faith in the propitiation of Christ, was his refuge and his solace; in the sense in which we should employ the words, he was "looking for the mercy of God unto eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." .....