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Hugh Mills Bunbury (1766-1838) of Guyana

image title

Above: This rather hazy portrait is believed to be of the
original Hugh Mill Bunbury, founder of the Devonshire sugar
plantation in Guyana. (Photo courtesy of Peter Bunbury)

Plantation owner Hugh Mill Bunbury of Guyana was the third and arguably the most eccentric of the six sons born to Thomas Bunbury of Cranavonane and his wife Mary Mill. He was born on 11th February 1766 and baptised on 15th April 1766 at Saint Paul's, Exeter, Devon.He appears to have moved to the West Indies as a young man, possibly with one of his brothers. In 1799, just 2 years after the island's conquest by Britain, he founded the great Devonshire estates in British Guyana. The children of his first wife provide troublesome - his daughter Lydia was disinherited for marrying the French Romantic poet Count Alfred de Vigny; his son Henry was written out of the records, possibly for his erratic behaviour as a young man in Scotland.

His second marriage to Alicia Lille produced four sons of whom the most prominent was Charles Thomas Bunbury, commander of the Rifle Brigade and husband of Lady Harriot Dundas. Hugh's grandson Hamilton Bunbury converted to Catholicism and became one of Pope Pius XI's Privy Chamberlain to, as well as heir to the Bunbury family seat of Cranavonane. Another grandson was the much decorated businessman, Evelyn James Bunbury.

The Marriage to Lydia Cox

On 6th August 1791, the year of his father's death, he was married in St. Vincent to 16-year-old Lydia Prisca Cox, the eldest of seven children born to Herbert Palmer Cox and his wife Jane. (Reports that suggest this marriage was in the UK are wrong.)

Herbert Cox was born in London in 1748 but left England for St Vincent on assignment with the British Army, sometime between 1770 and 1774. (1) On 6th August 1774, he was married in St Vincent to Jane Alexander, daughter of the Hon. Harry Alexander of Antigua and his wife, Lydia Martin. Herbert became a prominent individual on St Vincent and is listed as a member of a "Friendly Club" in 1785. He held several ranks in both the British Army and the St Vincent Island Militia from at least 1789 until his death aged 75 on 8 April 1824. In addition to his military and governmental duties, Herbert owned slaves and at least one sugar plantation. Lydia and her twin sister Margaret were baptized on 20 August 1775 in the island's St George's Anglican Cathedral in Kingstown.

Lydia Cox's Siblings

Margaret Cox, Lydia's younger twin, was married on 29 August 1796 to former army surgeon Dr Alexander Melville, with whom she had ten children. Lydia's younger brother Francis James Cox lived on the nearby island of St. Lucia and died on 1st July 1824 aged 39.

Their younger sister Anne Elizabeth Cox was married in 1809 to James Grant, a kinsman of Sir Alexander Grant.

Lydia's youngest brother Douglas Leith Cox was married in 1821 to Magdalen Sutherland with whom he had several children, born in St Vincent, Scotland, Canada and Hampshire in England.

Another brother Philip Greathead Cox did not surivive childhood.

The Move to Guyana

In 1796, the British captured the former Dutch colony of Demerara which then became British Guiana, now Guyana. Hugh, Lydia and their baby daughter Lydia Jane Bunbury moved there soon afterwards. (Lydia was apparently born in 1796 although there is no documentary proof of this yet).

In 1798, Hugh allegedly fathered an Edward Bunbury from a mixed race association, and it was Edward who later became the operator/owner of the Bunbury sugar plantations. This information came from Anthony Bunbury's research.

In 1799 Hugh purchased some bushland outside Essquibo in Demerara which he cultivated into what later became the Devonshire and Devonshire Castle estates, specialising in coffee, cotton and sugar. The published 'Recollections' of his illegitimate nephew Major Thomas Bunbury include some references to this plantation - and to the compensation his uncle received for the loss of slaves following the prohibition of slavery. Hugh had offered to purchase his nephew a Majority in the army but this was declined. In 1800, Lydia gave birth to a son, Hugh Mill Bunbury, whose birth may have resulted in Lydia's premature death. A newspaper article in The Times of London on the probate of Hugh M Bunbury states Lydia died in Demerara but was buried in St Vincent on 1st September 1800.

Lydia, Countess de Vigny

Hugh and Lydia's daughter Lydia Jane Bunbury came to literary fame in 1825 when she was married in Pau to the French dramatist and Romantic poet, Count Alfred de Vigny (1797-1863), then a Captain in the Red Mousquetaires of Louis XVIII. De Vigny was born in 1797 in the Touraine region of France to aristocratic parents who, though once wealthy, had lost their fortune during the French Revolution. The family moved to Paris where de Vigny was raised among other families nostalgic for the ancien régime of pre-Revolutionary France. In 1814, he followed family tradition and joined the Royal Guard, in which he served for thirteen years. While serving in the military he had several poems published, noted for there stoical despair and pessimistic views. It was towards the end of his time as a Musketeer that he met and married Lydia Bunbury. After they were married, Lydia revealed that she had lied about her date of birth, stating she was born in 1799 (rather than the expecetd date of 1796). Vigny was born in 1797 and Lydia did not want him to know she was older. The problem of Lydia's date of birth is discussed on p. 215 of Alfred de Vigny et les siens, PUF, 1989. (With thanks to Janette Mcleman Carnie).

The story runs that Hugh disapproved of Vigny. Indeed, according to French gossip, Hugh was 'so conspicuous an example of insular eccentricity that he never could remember his son-in-law's name or anything about him, except that he was a poet'. At any rate, he seems to have disinherited Lydia on account of the marriage. Lydia, poor thing, became a chronic invalid shortly after the marriage. She also never learned to speak French fluently. Being a Romantic poet, de Vigny became involved with several other women, including the great Romantic actress Marie Dorval. De Vigny was also said to have been disappointed when Hugh's second marriage to Alice Lillie deprived the couple of an anticipated inheritance, as evidenced by the court case of 1839, see below.

When an English theatre troupe visited Paris in 1827 with a Shakespearean production, de Vigny became interested in the stage. In 1831, he presented his first original play, La Maréchale d'Ancre, a historical drama recounting the events leading up to the reign of King Louis XIII. In 1835, he produced a drama titled Chatterton, based on the life of Thomas Chatterton, considered one of the best of the French romantic dramas. It made de Vigny famous and for a while, he was seen as Victor Hugo's literary rival.

In 1833, Lydia was caught up in a family scandal when her first cousin Henry Mill Bunbury married another first cousin, Mary Bunbury, to the dismay of her uncle Colonel Hamilton Bunbury. For more, see Bunbury of Cranavonane.

Disillusioned by politics, failed love affairs, and his lack of recognition as a writer, de Vigny withdrew from Parisian society after 1840. In 1845, following several unsuccessful attempts, he was elected to the prestigious literary society, Académie française. Three years later, de Vigny retreated to the family home at Charente, for which the French critic Charles Augustin Sainte-beuve coined the phrase 'tour d'ivoire' or 'ivory tower'. There, he lived quietly until his death from stomach cancer in 1863, a few months after Lydia herself had passed away after a long illness. De Vigny is interred in the Cimetière de Montmartre, Paris, France. They left no children. (2)

The Mystery of Hugh Mill Bunbury

Burke's states that Hugh Mills (or Mill?) Bunbury was born in 1800 and died in Canada in 1866. This 1866 death date is presumed to be sourced from the Cambridge University alumni record. However, the Deaths page in the Gallon family bible gives a death date for Hugh Mills Bunbury of 3 May 1861. Hugh was born in Guyana, after his father's first marriage in St Vincent West Indies to Lydia Cox. There is something mysterious about this man who, like his sister, was disinherited by their father. The notion that Hugh Mill Bunbury was a ladies man is suggested by the fact that he was married at least four times.



One of the earliest references to him concerns some marriage banns, dated 11-25 August 1822, between a Hugh Mills Bunbury of Thavies Inn, Holborn, and Mary Ann Eugenia Lauretta Chiles of Marylebone. She may well have been of Maltese origin. In 1825 Miss Chiles (aka Ann Eugenia Chiles of Marylebone) married Col. Edward Witherington, 9th Dragoons, a brother of Wolfe Tone's wife Mathilde Witherington. Their son was the rather mysteriously named Edward Bunbury Witherington who died in Croydon, Surrey, shortly before his 14th birthday in April-May 1841. Why did the boy get the name Bunbury if the marriage did not proceed? Maybe she was already pregnant with HMB2’s child when she married Colonel Witherington? (3) Mary Ann Eugenia Laura Witherington married Benjamin Henry Benjamin in Paris between 1849-1854. (With thanks to Nancy Overton, a descendant of Matilda Witherington).

The dates for the marriage banns are odd because they are read on three dates in August 1822 and normally the third and final reading of the banns occurs during the marriage ceremony. It appears that the marriage was called off at the third reading. When Hugh married Maria James the following year, the register described him as a bachelor.



Hugh and Maria James were married on 16th December 1823, in Newington, Surrey. Their only child Amelia Ann Bunbury was born shortly afterwards. I will move onto his other wives shortly.



Report from Times Online Archive: Wednesday January 5th 1825:
Insolvent Debtors Court, Tuesday, Jan. 4. 1825, Hugh Mills Bunbury late of Cambridge University was opposed by Messrs Pollock and Heath for a great number of creditors, principally trades people. The insolvent, who is a fashionable looking young man, not yet 24 years of age, stated in the course of his examination by Mr. Pollock that he went to Cambridge about the 26th of April last, accompanied by Mr. Platt, who is Bachelor of Corpus Christi College, as his tutor. He took his wife down there also, with a young lady named Harris. On his arrival he engaged lodgings at two guineas a week, in the suburbs of the town. He had previously lived for eighteen months at Walworth, and was in the habit of attending Mr. Hartley’s office, in New Bridge Street, BIackfriars, for the purpose of qualifying himself by legal study to enter Lincoln's Inn. He remained at Cambridge only until the 1st of September, when he again returned to Walworth, and through the medium of an advertisement in The Times newspaper, obtained a situation on trial at the British Annuity office. He was arrested on two actions and gave bail. The persecution of his creditors prevented him from retaining his situation or returning to the University and taking his degree of bachelor of arts. He had engaged himself in the conveyancing department of the British Annuity office, with the intention of applying his salary to the payment of the demands against him. He is not the son or the nephew of Sir Charles Bunbury; nor had he ever said he was. His father was never Commissary General of the Ionian Islands, nor did he say he was; but he had been Commissary General of the Leeward Islands. He is 23 years of age, and has been married 18 months. Shortly before he went to Cambridge, his income was reduced to 120l a year; but his father's agent gave him a sum of £120 when he was going to college. In 1812 he received £600 from his father; in 1813, £800. He had no specific allowance. Up to 1822 he might have spent £40,000 but in the middle of 1823 his income was cut down to £10 per month. He was proceeding, but . . . . .
The Chief Commissioner recommended him to answer the questions put to him, and not boast of the enormous sums of money he had squandered. . . . .
The Insolvent continued. He had Miss Harris on a visit with him because his wife was in delicate health. He had met her at the house of Mr. Pilme, a sculptor. Whilst he was at Cambridge, two poor men were drowned; and he raised 31 by subscription for their widows, all of which he paid over, except l5s, part of his own donation, to gentlemen named Martin and Campbell, members of the University. At one time there was a concert at Cambridge. Madame Catalani, Miss Stephens and other eminent performers were there. He gave a breakfast and dinner on that occasion. Signor Placci, Signor Spagnioletti, Mr. Sapio, Mr. Vaughan, and others attended his entertainment. The dinner was provided by Mrs.Dickinson the cook of St. Catherine’s Hall. Mr. Rutledge supplied the cheese and dessert, consisting of pineapples, melons, etc.. Mr. Newton supplied part of the wines, and Mr. Haughton the remainder. The entertainment was given, not at his college rooms, but at his lodgings. He did not know the amount of the bills. He expected an increased allowance from his father when he went to Cambridge. He did not borrow any money while there, except £3 from Mr. Bramah when he was coming up to town. He entered a debt of £26 in his schedule, as due from Mr. Corrie. It was the caution money he was obliged to lodge with him on entering the college. He was not aware it had been forfeited. He was obliged to dispose of part of the clothes he had had of Mr. Creek, and also two rings and a watch, to bring his wife up to town. His books, and a few articles of plate, were seized for three weeks' rent at Walworth. He contracted a debt with Mr. Ridgely for china and glass; he returned the glass. He also contracted a debt with Mr. Thrower for silk dresses &c. He gave some of them to his wife, and made Miss Harris a present of some: the remainder he pledged. He had not accounted for the duplicates in his schedule, because he had given them up to his brother-in.law, to whom he was indebted. The £120 he had received from his father's agent had been expended in travelling, and in paying his College expenses. He never had a horse of his own, but he had hired a horse and gig: and he occasionally drove a second horse tandem. He was never charged for the extra horse. He had never been a member of either of the Universities of Oxford and Edinburgh. When he went to Cambridge, he owed £70 to tailors, &c.; during his stay there he increased his debts to upwards of £500. The following affidavits were then put in and read :-
A. Campbell, Esq., of Jesus College, Cambridge, swore, that the insolvent entered a Fellow Commoner of St. Catherine's Hall and stated himself to have been an officer in the 16th Lancers, but had sold out about two years for the purpose of entering the Church; that he was allowed £900 a year by his father, who was brother to Sir Charles Bunbury; that his mother was a rich heiress; that when he reached 25 years of age, he would become entitled to considerable property, and that it was his intention to keep a couple of hunters, besides horses for driving. In consequence of these representations, the deponent and other members of the University introduced him to several of their friends.
Wm. Ford, A. B., stated, amongst other things, that the insolvent represented that he had taken the degree of A.B. at Edinburgh.
Mr. Creek, tailor, &c., swore that he had been induced by the insolvent's representations respecting his family, fortune &c to give him credit for £40 worth of clothes. On one occasion the insolvent said to him, "I wear the gown usually worn by noblemen, and I shall require to have such a gown made."
Mrs. Dickinson, cook of St. Catherine's Hall, stated that she was induced by similar representations to give him credit for cooking and pastry to the amount of £29.
Mr. Corrie, of Cambridge, swore that the insolvent's name was struck out of the College board and nothing was due to him.
Mr. Rutledge stated that he had given the insolvent credit for 18l worth of cheese and fruit.
When the above affidavits were read ,the insolvent was examined in explanation at great length by Mr. Cooke, and stated that he went to Cambridge at the instance of Mr. Platt, and of Mr.Ross, the barrister, of Lincoln's Inn, who is his relation. He did not know the difference when he entered between a fellow commoner and a pensioner. His father's name is the same as his own. When in town he resides at No. 4, Burlington Street; he is a West Indian planter, having estates In Demerara. He is now travelling, abroad. He had received a promise that his income should be doubled. When he contracted the debts complained of, he gave a reference to his uncle, Thomas Bunbury - to another uncle in Berkshire - to Mr. Holmes of the Treasury – to Dr. Wright, and to Mr. Ross.
The Chief Commissioner here directed Mr. Bramah's affidavit to be read. It stated that the insolvent represented that he had been an officer in the 16th Lancers-that he was to receive £30,000 on the death of his mother - that he was the nephew of Sir C. Bunbury - that he was promised a valuable living by Lord Grey, but that the Bishop of Salisbury had refused him ordination until he should have attended a course of divinity lectures, &c.
Insolvent's examination renewed - He endeavoured to effect an arrangement with his creditors, to whom he offered to pay 5s. in the pound, and 2l a month out of his 10l and still more if he obtained a salary; but they refused to accept it, and he was obliged to surrender in discharge of his bail.
Mr. Pollock addressed the Court on behalf of the opposing creditors,
Mr. Cooke, on the other side, complained of the introduction of the affidavits of persons who were not creditors, for the purposes of blackening this young man's character, and protracting his imprisonment. He had obtained no credit by whatever vain representations be might have made to his fellow-students in their rooms; but his doors were beset by rapacious trades people, anxious to force their goods upon him, because he had the appearance of a gentleman; and he was now forced by these very individuals to endure this day's ordeal for the paltry sum of a couple of hundred pounds. If he had been guilty of errors, they were the errors of a youth reared in extravagance. He was now but 23 years of age and he trusted that some indulgence would be extended towards him by the Court.
The Court observed, that this schedule must be amended, by the insertion of the duplicates, &c.; and when the necessary alterations were made, and the notices all served, they would state what the period would be for which they would remand this insolvent. It certainly would not be an inconsiderable one. They had often had occasion to remark upon the facility with which tradesmen gave credit to young men who were sent to the seats of learning, who were therefore not entitled to much protection from this Court. The present case, however, was of a very different description; for here the insolvent was not a raw inexperienced boy, but one who had led a long career of extravagance, and even boasted of having squandered £40,000. It was to be hoped that this day's exposure would operate with a beneficial effect upon his mind; if not, nothing that he could say could add to it. When the alterations were completed, the insolvent would be brought up to receive the judgment of the court.

Morning Post - Thursday 13 January 1825

On the Insolvent Debtors' Court (Cambridge), on Tuesday, Mr. Hugh Mills Bunbury, late of Catherine Hall, Cambridge, was op- posed for contracting extravagant debts by false representations. The Insolvent denied that he had ever represented him- self as the son or nephew of Sir Charles Bunbury; had never said his father was Commissary-general of the Ionian Islands, or Commissary of the Leeward Islands. His age is twenty- three, and he had been married eighteen months before he went to Cambridge. In 1812 he had £600 a year, and in 1813, £800 a year at his disposal; at present his income amounted only to £120 a year. During his stay at Cambridge he gave a Concert, and engaged Placci, Camporese, Sapio, and other eminent vocalists. Mr. Newton, one of the opposing creditors, sup- plied wine. The bill for pastry amounted to 18/. 7s. 9d. ; there were ices, pines, melons &c. To oppose the Insolvent's statement, affidavits were put in which averred that the Insolvent had declared that he was possessed of £900 a year from his father, who was brother to Sir Charles Bunbury; that he had been an Officer in the 16th Lancers, but sold out to pre- pare himself for theological pursuits; and that Lord Grey had a living of £2,000 a year in his gift in Berkshire, which was intended for him, when he was properly qualified. The Insolvent was remanded for judgment on a future day, the notices on the creditors not having been regularly served.



Maria Bunbury died in the summer of 1828 and she was buried in Middlewich, Cheshire, on 8th August 1828 (England, Select Cheshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1598-1900).

Hugh wasted little time finding a new wife. On 6th October 1828, Hugh was married secondly to Anne Gresty (sometimes written as Greisty), the wedding taking place in Middlewich, Cheshire. Anne died in July 1839 in Uxbridge, Middlesex, having begotten six children, Lydia Ann Bunbury (born 1830), Hugh Mills Bunbury (born at Nantwich, Cheshire, on 25th March 1832), Henry Thomas Bunbury (born 1834), Maria Louisa Bunbury (1836-1903), Alfred Bunbury (born 1838) and Ann Gresty Bunbury (born at West Drayton, Middlesex, on 8th June 1839).

In the midst of all this, if one is to read Miles and Mills, it seems that he somehow ties in with a the case of MacKenzie v Bunbury, reported in The Times in February 1830. This states that 'Mr. Hugh Miles Bunbury' , defendant, 'who is a gentleman of property ... having a son of an untoward disposition, sent him to a small school in a remote part of Scotland where, however, he soon formed an attachment to a young lady which induced his master to take measures to be relieved of his charge'. Through the medium of his friend, Mr Ross, Hugh then put his son into the office of a Mr. MacKenzie, plaintiff, 'a writer to the signet at Edinburgh'. 'One of the earliest uses' which the pragmatic boy 'made of the plaintiff's law books was to seek out and copy a contract of marriage according to the Scotch law, and which he immediately entered to with the young lady above-mentioned'. By the time friends of both parties discovered the marriage, 'the young gentleman' was seeing 'another lady whom he liked better'. The marriage was duly annulled at a cost of £30. In the meantime, Mr MacKenzie had tired of his charge whom he found to be 'anything but an agreeable appendage to his family' . He sent him to a friend in London who then dispatched him to friends in Hampshire. It transpired that poor MacKenzie had to foot all these bills himself, including the £30 annulment and £60 travel expenses, which is why he had been obliged to take Hugh to court. Hugh, then living in France, wrote a letter to assure him of payment but no money followed. Hugh was ordered to pay up, but cut the travelling expenses from £60 to £25. (4)

Anne Bunbury died in July 1839, probably due to complications while giving birth to a daughter Ann in June. Her death was reported by the Windsor and Eton Express (Saturday 13 July 1839) as follows: "On Monday last, died, at West Drayton, Mrs. Ann Bunbury, wife of Hugh Mills Bunbury, Esq., of Nantwich, in Cheshire, which place the body was removed on Friday morning, under the superintendence of Mr. Goodman, Undertaker, of Uxbridge. The above lady had been confined a few days previous, and her death was accelerated in consequence of the violent storm of thunder and lightning on Sunday night, leaving six young children deplore her loss.'

Hugh and Ann Bunbury's six children were:

1) Lydia Ann Bunbury was born in 1830. In 1849 she was living in Otanabee Township, Peterborough, Ontario with her father. Later in the same year she was married in Coburg, Northhumberland, Ontario.

2) Hugh Mills Bunbury jr, the eldest son, was born at Nantwich, Cheshire, on 25th March 1832. He appears to have married Louisa Jane Ruttan on 12 May 1858 in Canada. They had children - Anna born c.1858 (who married George Anderson on 2 September 1884) and Hugh (born .c. 1860). HMB jr. then married Adda or Adde Cole (Adelaide Cole, who was born in 1847) and died in 1902 aged 68. (This information was provided by George and Annie's great-granddaughter Susann Anderson who has copies of both the Bunbury-Cole marriage license and HMB's death certificate from 1902).They lived in the Durham East/Port Hope area of Ontario and their son Henry Mills Bunbury III was born circa 1869-1872). Henry Mills Bunbury III was married in Picton, Ontario, on 25th March 1891, to Edna Stacia Stortts.

HMB jr. may also have fathered Charles Frederick Bunbury either with Louisa or someone else prior to their marriage. Charles Frederick Bunbury, son of Hugh, mother unknown, was born in Cobourg, southern Ontario, Canada in 1851. By 1861 he was living with Hugh Mills Bunbury II in Victoria. The 1871 Canada Census records a 21-year-old dry goods merchant by name of Charles F Bunbury who had married a Charlotte V. Bunbury and was living at 262 Yonge, Toronto, with daughter Mary, aged 1. (Lovell's Canadian Dominion Directory, 1871.) He may be a different person to the Charles on the 1877 marriage record as the latter was indicated as a bachelor. Charlotte's maiden name is thought to have been Lampert. Their son Charles Frederick Bunbury Junior was born in Toronto on 8 July 1874 and was still alive to apply for Social Security in May 1939. Charlotte may have died because Charles Frederick Bunbury, son of Hugh, was married to Mary R. Hutchinson on 23 Oct 1877 in an Episcopalian ceremony. ('Ontario, Canada, Marriages, 1801-1928', record found by Andy Hill). In 1881, Charles was recorded as a salesman, boarding at Toronto's American Hotel. (Toronto Trade Directory 1881). In 1882, Charles F Bunbury of Kyle & Bunbury was based at the Albion Hotel in Montreal. (Montreal Directory 1882. Andy Hill also found a Protest and Notification record in the Quebec Notarial Records dated 22 July 1882 in Montreal for Charles F Bunbury against a R. Legebvre, but he can't read the handwriting very well.) He was clocked as an insurance agent in the Ontario Trade Directory of 1885, above the following in bold writing: Bunbury & Owen Agents Provident Mutual Association of Canada. It is thought that the 13-year-old Charlotte Augusta Bunbury of Toronto who succumbed to typhoid fever on 4 January 1886 was his daughter. In 1889, Charles was described as a 'traveler' when he took rooms at 28 Front. (Toronto City Directory 1889) and three years later, he was manager of the Home Life Assurance of Canada, with rooms at 54 Church (Toronto City Directory 1892). By the time of the 1901 census, Charles F. Bunbury was in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland, where he was recorded as a widower. On 23 June 1911 he was married again at the Anglican Cathedral (Holy Trinity Church) in Quebec to Dame Ellen [Eleanor] Thompson of the city of Newcastle on the Tine (sic) England widow of the late Thomas Graham, spirits merchant. The ceremony was conducted by Walter Shirley Gibson Bunbury (a great-uncle of Gill Miller). The witnesses were Eleanor's two Newcastle-born nieces Isabella Carr, 27, and Elizabeth S Walker, 22, elementary school teacher. Did the families knew each other or if it was just a co-incidence that Walter Bunbury married this couple? It is unclear why the bride and her two nieces took themselves over to Canada for the wedding rather than marrying in the bride’s home town. On 30 Oct 1911 Charles and Eleanor arrived in Glasgow, from Montreal, on the Donaldson Line ship 'Cassandra' as second class passengers, listed as Tourists. By 1920, Charles was describing himself as a 'manufacturing agent'. Eleanor was living at 35 Beach Avenue, Whitley Bay, Northumberland , when she died on 14 June 1926, aged 57. Charles died in September 1930, aged 81.

3) Henry Thomas Bunbury, the second son, was born in 1834. He married JANE MONA DAINTRY on 5th September 1867 in Hamilton, Canada. She was born 18 Nov 1844. Henry died in Hamilton, Wentworth, Ontario on 14th February, 1913 aged 78 years. (3a) Their daughter Mona Bunbury married Judge Thomson of Hamilton.

4) Maria Louisa Bunbury, who was born in the village of Wybunbury, Cheshire, on 10 June 1836. On 5 Aug 1857 she married James Gallon (b. 1832 Moray, Scotland) in Colborne Township, Ontario. She died in Montreal, Quebec, on 8 Feb 1903. Maria and James Gallon had 11 children:
Henry James Gallon (19 Jul 1858 - 14 Aug 1859)
Amy Rosaline Seymour Gallon (13 Jul 1859 - 9 Jul 1915)
Margaret Eliza Grant Gallon (15 Apr 1861 - 16 Aug 1862)
Mary Louisa Gallon (6 Jun 1862 - 18 Nov 1919)
Gertrude Ann Gallon (29 Sep 1863 - 29 Mar 1940) who moved to Montreal after her marriage.
William James Gallon (12 Jun 1865 - 1945)
Hubert Mills Gallon (8 Mar 1867 - 29 Nov 1941)
Francis Percival Gallon (2 Sep 1868 - 9 Jan 1915)
George Alexander Gallon (6 Aug 1870 - 27 Aug 1871)
Meta Anna Gwendoline Gallon (12 Apr 1873 - 24 Aug 1938)
Charles Roderick Gallon (21 May 1874 - 5 Jan 1917
[This is from the Marriages page in the Gallon family bible, courtesy of Andy Hill whose wife is Maria's great-great-granddaughter.]

5) Alfred Bunbury (born 1838). It seems unlikely he survived given that Hugh and his fourth wife Anna also called their son Alfred in 1854.

6) Ann Gresty Bunbury was born at West Drayton, Middlesex, on 28th June 1839 and baptised on 8th July. Her mother died three days later.



On 6 November 1839, four months after the death of his second wife, 39-year-old Hugh Mills Bunbury was married thirdly, in Nantwich, Cheshire, to 25-year-old Jane Johnson.* Their son Herbert Augustus Johnson Bunbury was christened on 25 October 1840 in Calais & St. Omer, France. Sadly the baby died the next day and was buried in Calais on 28 October.

It was previously thought that, like Anne, Jane had died shortly after the birth of the baby as there was no further record of her. However, in September 2015, Gill Miller advised of an important update which she found via a case that came before the Consistory Court of Exeter on 11 February 1852 called Jane Bunbury v. Hugh Mills Bunbury, concerning 'divorce by reason of cruelty and adultery' [C78/2144, no. 9 [10] : University of Houston - WAALT]. As Gill puts it:

'The date of the court case highlighted the fact Jane Bunbury/Johnson was still alive in 1852. I searched again for Jane Bunbury and found whom I think is her in 1851 Census in Sussex, aged 35 and a visitor but no other information given for her. I am sure I have her in 1861 again in Sussex, a 43 year old lodger, fund holder, born Cheshire and described as married, so no divorce can have been finalised. I then found her death in Hove, Sussex on 3rd September 1874 and sent for her certificate which described her as Jane Bunbury, female, aged 54, widow of Hugh Mills Bunbury, West Indian Proprietor HMB2 appears to have died in Canada in 1866 so maybe Jane had maintained contact with him, had information about him passed onto her or the informant at her death just assumed she was a widow.

A child, Alfred William Bunbury, was born to ? and HMB2 in 1853 so possibly the product of the adultery mentioned in the court case of 1852 although I don’t for one minute believe he was adulterous with only one female. HMB2 married Anna M. Lowrie in Canada on 22nd October 1858 and, from all I have said here, it would appear this was a bigamous marriage.'

Jane Bunbury died on September 3 1874, at Osborne Villas, CHftonville, Brighton. Her death notice in the Berkshire Chronicle (Saturday 12 September 1874) described her as the 'widow of Hugh Mills Bunbury.'

On the 1841 census, three of Hugh's children - 11-year-old Lydia, 5-year-old Maria and 3-year-old is registered as living in High Street, Bromley, Kent. However, 2-year-old Ann was staying with the Wilkinson family at Willaston, Nantwich, Cheshire.

On 10th November 1845, 45-year-old Hugh boarded the Toronto ship and set sail across the Atlantic from London to New York with his three sons and four daughters. Amelia was by then 22 while Lydia, the eldest child of his second marriage, was 15. Hugh's third wife Jane does not appear to have sailed with the family.

The Bunburys settled in Canada. A report on the 16th June 1847 gives the following: "Hugh Mills Bunbury was a visitor at "the Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of the Loyal Orange Association of British North America" in" Cobourg, Canada West".

* England & Wales Marriage Index for Q4 1839 "BUNBURY, Hugh Mills, Nantwich, Vol 19, page 165" and "JOHNSON, Jane, Nantwich, vol 19, page 165" and the Cheshire, England, Select Bishop's Transcripts, 1537-1933.



On 22nd October 1858, 58-year-old Hugh was married fourthly to 20-year-old Anna M. Lowrie in Ontario, Canada. This marriage may have been bigamous as his wife Jane appears to have lived until 1874 and he never divorced her. It seems Hugh and Anna had already been together for some time as they had a son, Alfred William Bunbury, who was born in 1854. This suggests that Hugh's older son Alfred (by Ann Gresty) had died young.

In the 1861 Census, Hugh Mill Bunbury was living in Verulam Township, Ontario, with his wife Anna (Lowrie) and his sons Charles H. Bunbury, aged 12, (born 1849) and Edward J Bunbury, aged 11 (born 1850). Both boys were born in Upper Canada. Who was Charles and Edward's mum!!?

The 1861 Canada Census also lists a 7-year old Edward Bunbury (ie: born 1854) living with Maria Louisa Gallon (nee Bunbury) in the neighbouring Peterborough Township in Ontario ... so he's born about 1854 - the same year listed above for Alfred William Bunbury, son of Hugh and Anna ... or is he the one and the same person? Hugh and Anna's son Alfred William Bunbury was born in 1854 [???] and married in Bristol in November 1882 to 24-year-old school mistress Emily J. Perrin, daughter of Martha Perrin. At the time of the 1891 Census, 37-year-old Alfred worked as a Wholesale & Retail Stationer and lived at 6 Seymour Road, St Philip & St Jacob Out, Bristol. (Registration district Barton Regis.) Alfred died in Bristol, aged 69 in September 1922. (GRO cert: 6 a 129). Emily died in Bristol in April 1928, aged 70. (GRO cert: 6 a 153). They had three children - Norah Lillian Bunbury (Dec 1883 - Aug 1897 who died in Bristol aged just 14), Hugh Mill Bunbury (21 Sep 1889 - Apr 1972, who died in Evesham, aged 83) and Cecil Edward Bunbury (May-Nov 1899, who died in Bristol aged six months). Alfred's son Hugh married Daisy Leonore Webb (d. 1981) in Bristol in 1919. Their daughter Clare Leonore Bunbury was born in Bristol on 5th August 1921. In May 1947 she was married in Heywood to John D. Wheeler. hey had two daughters Sarah Wheeler (born 1948) and Jane Wheeler (born 1951). Clare died in March 2004 in Sutton, aged 82.


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Above: This is believed to be Alicia Bunbury (nee Lillie), second wife of Hugh Mill
Bunbury, with their four daughters. (Photo courtesy Peter Bunbury).

The Marriage to Alicia Lillie

In March 1822, seven years after Napoleon's fall at Waterloo, Hugh Mill Bunbury took as his second wife Alicia Lillie, daughter of Philip Lillie whose address is given in Burke's as Drumdoe Castle, County Roscommon. Drumdoe is located on the southeastern shore of Lough Arrow but I know of no such castle. Alicia bore him a further four sons - Peter, Henry, Charles and Francis - and four daughters. Sometime after this Hugh took residence at West Hill in Wandsworth, Surrey, where he still had an address at the time of his death in 1838. His wife surivived him until 13th October 1863 when she died at her London residence, 7 Prince's Square in Bayswater. (*) All their children are looked at again below except (until further information arises) the fourth son Francis Hamilton Bunbury (born 1839, died unmarried in Munich aged 19 in 1858).

* In the U.K. census of 1861, Alicia Bunbury, a widow, 65, is recorded as living at 7, Princes Square, Paddington, Bayswater, in the Borough of Marylebone, along with a niece Mary Dillon and a nephew Arthur Lillie, aged 30, a Lieutenant - Indian Retired List.


Bunbury v Bunbury Roll's Court, Westminster, April 1839

In 1839, just months after Hugh Mills Bunburys death, a court case took place between his children by his first marriage to Lydia Cox (ie: Henry Mill Bunbury and Lydia de Vigny, with her husband Count Alfred also mentioned) and the seven infant children of his second marriage to Alicia Lillie. The main question was whether the Court in Demerara (governed by the laws of Holland) or the Court of Chancery in Great Britain were the proper jurisdiction for the trial of the suit. It transpired that in 1799 Hugh purchased some bushland in Demerara which he cultivated into what later became the Devonshire and Devonshire Castle estates. Upon his marriage to Lydia in August 1791, Hugh had 'made a settlement of certain slaves with their future issue, and increases, for himself for life, and afterwards for his wife for life, and afterwards for the issue of their marriage on attaining 21 or marrying'. As the Devonshire estates did not exist at the time of this marriage settlement, the case was to decide whether the children of his second marriage had any rights to the estate. The details of the case themselves are too complex to note here but the link is footnoted below. The Emancipation Act did not come into affect in Demerara (aka Guyana) until 1840. (5)


The Daughters of Hugh & Alicia Bunbury

Hugh and Alicia's eldest daughter Alicia Mary Delphine Bunbury was born in Nice in 1823, lived with her mother at 7 Prince's Square and died at Stroud in Gloucester as a 76-year-old spinster in March 1899. The second, Elizabeth Catherine Bunbury (1827 - 1916) was married at Reinach in Switzerland on 6th November 1854 to Count Constantine Jasienski of Indorow and Narewka in Volbynia. (6) The Count died at Zitomir in Poland in March 1916. They had no children. The third daughter, Anne Maria Bunbury (1829 - 1906) became a Carmelite nun. The Times (Friday, Oct 16, 1829) mentions a daughter born 'to the lady of H.M. Bunbury' in Versailles on 11th October 1829 which may have been Anne Marie and also supports the notion that Hugh lived in France at the time of MacKenzie v Bunbury. The fourth and youngest sister Alicia Belinda Bunbury (1833 - 1885) likewise married Count Alexander Jasienski, presumably a brother of Constantine, and left issue a son of whom no further details are known.


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Above: Captain Philip Mill Bunbury, 7th Dragoon Guards
(Image courtesy of Peter Bunbury)

Captain Philip Bunbury & Hamilton Bunbury of Cranavonane

Hugh and Alicia Bunbury's eldest son was Philip Peter Mill Bunbury. He was born on 23rd March 1824. His military career began on 16th April 1840 as a Cornet, 7th Dragoon Guards, and he rose to become Captain. On 12th January 1865 he married Georgina MacEvoy, third daughter of Peter MacEvoy of Wimbledon, Surrey, and Great Cumberland Place in London WI. The marriage took place in the Catholic chapel on Spanish Place and there is a suggestion of a Catholic conversion at this point. Georgina died on 30th May 1885 in Croydon, aged 58. Philip, who was living at Westhill Wandsworth at the time of his marriage, died at West Hampnet on 28th July 1894, aged 70.

Philip and Georgina Bunbury's son, Major Hamilton Joseph Bunbury, was 20 years old when he succeeded to the family seat of Cranavonane in Ireland on the death of his cousin Henry Mill Bunbury in 1886. Hamilton was born on 14th February 1866 and educated at Downside. He served as a Captain in the 2nd Volunteer Battalion of the Royal Sussex Regiment and later as a Major in the 4th Battalion HLI. He became a Knight of the Sovereign Order of Malta and, in 1923, served as Privy Chamberlain of the Sword and Cape to His Holiness Pope Pius XI. He died unmarried at Ballygate Cottage, Beccles, Suffolk, on 13th May 1949, and was buried in the local Catholic Church. Philip and Georgina's only daughter, Mary Alicia Bunbury, also took to the Catholic cloth, becoming a Nun of the Order of the Good Shepherds. She died aged 86 on 12th March 1953.


Henry Hugh Bunbury (1831-1870) & The GUIANA Bunburys

Hugh and Alicia Bunbury's second son Henry Hugh Bunbury was born in 1831 at Regent Park, London. He spent some time in British Guiana, where his family were involved in the colonial administration, as well as the sugar industry. He appears to have died in London Holborn, aged 39, on 27 July 1870. He was buried at St George the Martyr in London.

In 1857, he had a son, Hugh Mills Bunbury; the name of the boys mother is not known and he died in British Guiana on 24th August 1875, aged 18. Henry Hugh Bunbury was also the father to Arthur Alyoissus Bunbury who, born in 1868, was only two when HHB died. He married Mary Ann Conner, daughter of John Conner, and died at Georgetown, Guiana, in 1912. Arthur and Mary Ann Bunbury are said to be the parents of Leslie Bunbury and his two sisters, Coraline (known as Coral) and Averill.

Leslie Bunbury (1903-1967) was also born in Guiana. In 1971, during the diaspora that followed Guyanan independence, Leslie’s widow left ‘old BG as they used to call it’ with her only son David Bunbury (1933-2006) who, born in Georgetown, finished his PH.D. at Notre Dame in the States and became a chemistry teacher at a small Catholic university in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. In the summer of 2007, I was contacted by David's son Dan Bunbury, whose mother hailed from Colorado. Dan and his three siblings were born and raised in Antigonish. Dan was born in 1962, has a Ph.D. in Canadian History and works in health research. Leslie's sister Coral married but had no children. His otehr sister Averill had three children, Dorothy (who lives in Saskatchewan), Denise (1935-2020), who married Roy (died 2019), and is survived by two daughters) and Johnny (who died in Barbados circa 2018).

Arthur and Mary Ann were probably also the parents of Philip Arthur Bunbury, known as Pip. He started his career as a Surveyor’s Assistant and was appointed a 5th Class Clerk with the British Guiana Lands and Mines Department in 1921. (The Official Gazette, 17th December 1921). He rose through the rank and was a 4th Class Clerk by 1927, then a Sub-Warden and finally a Warden. (The Dominions Office and Colonial Office List, Volume 66, Waterlow & Sons, Limited, 1927, p. 244.) There is a description of his office on offer from page 9 of the Blue Book of British Guiana (1926) but I cannot access what it says. In a letter dated 30 May 1930 published in the 1930 Annual Report of the Lands and Mines Department, the General of the department in Georgetown says: ' It is with regret that I have to record the death of Mr. P. A. Bunbury , Warden of Nos 3 & 4 Mining Districts (Mazaruni & Cuyuni) on the 14th of November while on his way down to Georgetown on recuperative leave. There is no mention of his illness but family lore holds that it was black-water fever, yellow fever or malaria. Vincent Roth, a government surveyor and former Warden of Mazaruni, was appointed in his place. Mr Roth wrote a memoir of his time in office, 'A Life in Guyana: The Later Years, 1923-1935’ (Peepal Tree, 2003) in which he describes how it was ‘Pip Bunbury’, then Sub-Warden of Bartica, who informed him of his initial appointment as Warden of Mazaruni, date unknown, on page 26. He also refers to the ‘very sad death of Pip Bunbury’ on page 38. (Vincent Roth also refers to a Gavin Bunbury.) By his unrecorded marriage to Elizabeth Alicock (who lived in Bartica), Pip had two sons Clarence De Weaver (who moved to the US or Canada in the 1970s and did not go by Bunbury but is thought to have used a name from his mother’s family) and Irvin Bunbury (who was born in Guyana on May 25, 1926.) Elizabeth was married secondly to Harold Smith with whom she eventually moved to Sheriff Street in Georgetown. Irvin died in 2003 and was father to Karen Bunbury who was born in Guyana, South America in 1967, and who has been living in Canada since 1982.

I am also in touch with Anthony Bunbury whose great-grandfather, George Bunbury, born 1854, was a gold-miner and farmer in Guyana and married Mary Burnett; I think their son married a Guyana girl. There's also mention of an Edward Bunbury who owned a plantation at Sparta and who appears to have been HMB's natural son.

Anthony's uncle Lancelot Bunbury, who passed away in 2004, lived in his grandfather's house in Diamond just outside Georgetown. In his last correspondence with me he said there was more than one Sydney Bunbury living in Guyana today, one of whom was his first cousin via an Uncle Lyndon Bunbury. Anthony's nephew Greg Bunbury also expressed an interest in family history in September 2017, as did Rachel Bunbury, a solicitor from Vaughan, Ontario, in August 2018. Rachel moved her law practice to downtown Toronto in 2019 and is now part of a Law Chambers.

At any rate, the Guyana property duly passed to a Robert Bunbury. And that's all I know of this branch. In 2004, a friend working in Guyana sent me a photocopy of the Georgtown Telephone Book that listed 24 Bunbury's and a good few Bumbury's (separated by the Bumper to Bumper Car Service!). She also sent me an article from the Guyana Stabroek newspaper dated Sunday 19th October 2003 relating to a Roger Bunbury who was wanted for double homicide so I kind of hope he is not too closely related.

Nathan Bunbury is referenced in The Official Gazette of British Guiana, Volume 33 (1911), p. 125.


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Above: It is thought that this portrait is of Lt. Col. Charles
Thomas Bunbury, commander of the Rifle Brigade, third
son of Hugh and Alicia Bunbury.
(Photo courtesy of Peter Bunbury).

Lt Col Charles Thomas Bunbury (1836-1917) & Lady Harriot Dundas

Hugh and Alicia Bunbury's third son, Charles Thomas Bunbury, was born in Wandsworth in the spring of 1836. He joined the army in June 1855, serving as a lieutenant with the Rifle Brigade (the Prince Consort's Own). He later commanded the Rifle Brigade, retiring in 1881 with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

On 7th April 1875 he was married in Nice to Lady Harriot Emily Dundas, a descendent of Lawrence Dundas, a wealthy Scottish businessman and Member of Parliament. Her father, the Hon. J. Charles Dundas, MP, younger son of the 1st Earl of Zetland, lived in Yorkshire. Lady Harriot's brother Lawrence Dundas of Aske Hall, Richmond, Yorkshire, was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland from 1889 until 1892, in which year he was created 1st Marquess of Zetland. According to her obituary in The Times, Lady Harriot's 'early years were spent in Yorkshire, first at Oran and then at Middleton Lodge. A lover of horses, she was fond of hunting and driving. Second only to her love of horses was her fondness for music and painting. There are some still living who will remember the three sisters at Middleton Lodge, Lady Charlotte at the big organ, and Lady Harriot and Lady Alice each at a grand piano flanking the organ, giving musical evenings to their guests. Winter visits to the Riviera afforded opportunities for developing her taste for music and paintings. She often described the family progress by special saloon from Calais to Marseilles, where the railway then ended, and the rest of the journey to Nice by post-chaise. In the first chaise went her father, herself and the elder boys, followed by her mother and the other children, and in the third chaise the servants and luggage. Each chaise was drawn by four horses managed by one postilion only, riding one of the wheelers with long reins to the leaders. That arrangement struck her as extremely dangerous as they usually progressed at a smart canter, but she never remembered any accident preventing their safe arrival at their villa in Nice'.

One of Lady Harriot Bunbury's aunts married Earl Fitzwilliam's agent and brother-in-law, Robert Chaloner, MP, a member of the wealthy alum mining family from Guisborough in Yorkshire. (See: R B Turton, The Alum Farm). Robert would become heavily embroiled in the controversial exodus of the Fitzwilliam tenantry to Canada that still has historians puzzling over whether Earl Fitzwilliam was the Oskar Schindler of the Irish Famine. (See Humewood Castle for more or 'Black Diamonds' by Catherine Bailey).

After her marriage, she lived the life of an officer's wife, going with her husband to Ireland, Woolwich, Aldershot and finally to the Rifle Depot at Winchester where they lived at Cotswold House. The Bunburys remained in Winchester after Thomas's retirement, until his death aged 81 on 9th October 1917, six months after Wilfred was killed in action. All four sons were in France when Wilfred was killed. Of their nine children, three died within three weeks during the whooping cough epidemic of 1886. Lady Harriot was on the committee of the Rifleman's aid Sociaty and the Soldiers & Sailors Wives & Families Association. Thomas and Lady Harriot had six children who survived childhood - four military minded sons, Charles, Wilfred, Bertram and Evelyn, and two daughters, Mary and Cecilia, all of whom are profiled below. Lady Harriot died at Ovington Gardens in London at the age of 90 on 11th December 1939. (7)

Charles Hamilton de St Pierre Bunbury

Thomas and Lady Harriot Bunbury's eldest son Charles Hamilton de St Pierre Bunbury was born on 23rd September 1877 and educated at Prior Park and RMC Sandhurst. He served in the Boer War after which, on 22nd November 1905, he married Dorothy Hughes, daughter of Herbert Hughes, CB, CMG, of Ashdell Grove, Sheffield. He died on 9th May 1956 leaving three daughters.
The eldest daughter Sylvia Dorothy Mary Bunbury was born in 1909 and married in 1939 to G/Capt Charles Broughton, CBE, RAF, son of Charles Broughton of Timaru, New Zealand, with whom she had two daughters Jennifer (b. July 1940) and Vivien (b. Jan 1947).
The middle daughter Pamela Constance Bunbury was married in May 1938 to Roy Denzil Lindo, elder son of Percy Lindo of Royston, Kingston, Jamaica. They had a son David (Roy Anthony) Lindo (b. 1948) and three daughters, Sandra (Vivienne) (b. 1938), Anne Caroline (b. 1945) and Josephine Bronwen Mary (b. 1952). Roy was a brother-in-law of Joe Blackwell, late husband to Meike Blackwell, for whom my daughter Jemima Meike McClintock Bunbury is named.
The youngest daughter Virginia Jean Bunbury was born in 1919 and settled in Washington DC.
They also had two sons, Neil and Nigel, who died in infancy in October 1923 and December 1925 respectively.

Captain Wilfred Joseph Bunbury

Thomas and Lady Harriot Bunbury's second son Wilfred Joseph Bunbury was born on 21st February 1882. He was educated at Beaumont and St George's College, Weybridge, where he matriculated at the London University Examination; he was afterwards at Ushaw College, Durham. Before the war he was in the firm of Wise, Speke & Co, Stockbrokers, Newcastle on Tyne. Wilfred was a well-known member of the St George's Hockey Club, for whom he played frequently; he also played several times for Northumberland County, his place being centre half-back. He was likewise a very keen cricketer, was a member of the Northumberland County Club, the Yorkshire Gentlemen and the Borderers, for all of which he used to play. He belonged to the Portland Park Tennis Club, at Newcastle, where he played most days during the season when he was residing there. (St Georges Gazette - 31st May 1917). On the 4th August, 1914, he joined the 4th Battalion Northumberland Fusiliers, volunteering for foreign service and was promoted Lieutenant on the 27th December of the same year. He proceeded overseas to France with his Battalion on the 20th April, 1915 and was wounded at the Second battle of Ypres, 24th May, 1915. After some months of hospital treatment he was able to rejoin and attended a course of physical training and bayonet exercise at Aldershot. He was appointed Physical Training Officer first to his battalion, then to his Brigade, and subsequently to a Command Depot in Ireland. During the time he was Physical Training Officer he arranged most successful sports at Redcar in the summer of 1916, when he was complimented by the General. In September, 1916, he was appointed to Ballyvonare Camp, Buttevant, County Cork, where he started games for the men, such as cross country runs, and boxing matches, all of which were greatly appreciated by the convalescent soldiers in his charge. He held this appointment until he got orders to return to France.

He left England on 8th March 1917 and was attached to the 6th Battalion of the Northumberland Fusiliers when killed in action on the 15 April, 1917, leading his men to attack an enemy post. His Colonel wrote: 'He was leading an attack in a conspicuously gallant manner and was the first man into the enemy trench when he was hit in the face and died painlessly. We recovered his body and buried it at night. His death was a great grief to me as we were great friends when he was in my Company, where he always earned our admiration for the thorough way in which he carried out any work entrusted to him'. He was buried at Wancourt British Cemetery S.M 72.

On 24 September 1908, Wilfred had married Dorothy Beresford, second daughter of Major Arthur John Preston, B.A., J.P. (late of the 33rd Duke of Wellington Regiment) of Swainston, Kilmessan, Co. Meath. His widow only survived him until 30 October 1918. She left a baby son, Wilfred, born psthumous to his father's death, and two small daughters. The eldest daughter Dorothy Barbara Mary Bunbury was born in 1909, married Arthur Wilson and settled in Hove, Sussex. The younger daughter Margaret Joan Beresford Bunbury, born in 1911, became a nun of the Order of the Sacred Heart.

Wilfred and Dorothy's son, (Wilfred Joseph) Michael de St. Pierre Bunbury, was born posthumously on 3rd September 1917 and educated at Ampleforth and Peterhouse, Cambridge. I believe his mother died when he was quite young so he was effectively an orphan. He had little connection with his Bunbury relatives thereafter. During World War Two, he served as T/Lieut with the Royal Navy, after which he became the Irish agent for the luxury Bristol car dealership. Thom's Directory 1949 lists W.J. Bunbury as as proprietor of a Motor Garage in Santry, under a section with the rather fab heading of 'Nobility, Gentry, Merchants & Traders.' It is not certain where the Santry garage was but Brendan McCoy suggests it was on the old Airport Road, close to where the Omni Centre and industrial units are today. (2019) Mike Bunbury - as he was known - had an address at 10 Merrion House, Lower Fitzwilliam St, Dublin. [It is thought that he financed his operations through Bowmaker (Ireland) Ltd, an 'industrial bank' based at 115 St. Stephens Green W (the corner building beside the Unitarian Church) in Dublin. This was affiliated with Bowmaker in the UK, which, founded in 1926, is now part of Lloyds Banking Group. In the early 50's Bowmaker (Ireland) Ltd were advertising car financing in Motoring Life.] My step-grandfather Major H. C. Massy was among those to purchase a Bristol.

In June 1952, Mike Bunbury married the late Deirdre Mulcahy, daughter of Dr. Daniel Mulcahy of Perth, West Australia, and Mrs Hamish Mitchell of Dublin, and sister of the late John Mulcahy (1932-2018), founder of The Phoenix magazine. Mike and Deirdre later moved to South Africa, settling at 39 Paul Roos Street, Unitas Park, Vereeniging. andThey have two sons, Patrick John de St Pierre Bunbury (b. 1956) and Dr. Michael (Charles) Bunbury (the solitary GP on the island of Mustique, married to clothes designer Lotty Bunbury and father to two sons, Frederick and Fabian, and two daughters, Jemima Bunbury and the equine artist Madeleine Bunbury) and also had two daughters Charlotte Bunbury (1953-2015) and the late Harriot Bunbury (who was married to Richard James Jessel from 1982 to 1997). I spent a very enjoyable evening in Deirdre Bunbury's company in Ranelagh, Dublin, in about 2004. She lived at Rosary Gardens, London SW7, and died on 3rd November 2009.

(Thanks to Michael Bunbury, Geoff Dowdle & Brendan McCoy)


Bertram John Bunbury

Thomas and Lady Harriot Bunbury's third son Bertram John Bunbury was born in March 1887 and served as a lieutenant with the Rifle Brigade in the Great War. On 8th July 1915 he was married in Kensington to Nira Hardcastle, daughter of Frank Hardcastle, DL, JP, of Bolton, Lancs. Nina was born in Bolton on 24th March 1892.

Bertram and Nina Bunbury had three daughters.

The eldest (Marie) Justine (Antoinette) Bunbury was born in Banbury on 13th June1916 and married at Worthing, Sussex, on 26th April 1941 to John Mair, son of Colonel John Allen Freeman Mair, MC, of Saltair, old Bosham, Sussex and had three sons, John Christian Mair (b. 1942), Antony Stefan Rumley Mair (b. 1946) and Simon James Justin Mair (b. 1954).

The middle sister (Mary Teresa) Lynette Bunbury was born in Banbury on 21 September 1917, is thought to have never married and died in Chichester in February 2006 aged 89.

The youngest sister Nira (Mary Gabrielle) Bunbury was born in Rugby, Warwickshire, on 21 January 1923. On 27 April 1963, she had a daughter Cheryl Bjorklund who was subsequently adopted and who, as of 2021, resides in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

All three sisters were educated at St. Mary's, Ascot.

(With thanks to Veronica Bunbury for the latter detail).

Evelyn James Bunbury

Thomas and Lady Harriot Bunbury's youngest surviving son was the much decorated businessman, Evelyn James Bunbury, CBE (1952), MC (1918), Knight of the Sovereign Order of Malta, JP for Surrey. He served variously as Director of the Excess Insurance Company & Mercantile Bank of India, Chairman of Oriental Telephone & Electric Company, Chairman of the Agricultural Mortgage Corporation, Chairman of the National Mutual Life Association of Australasia (London Board) and President of the Imperial Bank of India and Director of the Bank of England. He was born on 31st October 1888 and educated at The Oratory School, Queen's College Oxford (BA, 1910) and Caen University. He served as a Captain with the Grenadier Guards during World War One from 1917 to 1919. On 11th October 1928 he was married at the Bormpton Oratory to his cousin Marjorie North, eldest daughter of Lt Col Edward Bunbury North, CMG, DSO, DL, JP, of Summerdale, Holme, Westmoreland, althugh they also had an address at the Old Hall, Milnthorpe, Westmorland. (See Verstrume-Bunbury). As the Morecambe Guardian noted on Saturday 20 October 1928, "the bridegroom is a nephew of the Marquess and Marchioness of Zetland, and he had as his best man Sir Hew Hamilton -Dalrymple." Sylvia Bunbury, daughter of Charles, was a bridesmaid. Evelyn and Marjorie had a daughter, Gillian Mary Bunbury, born on 26th August 1929, educated at New Hall, Chelmsford.

Mrs. Hew Wakeham Tompson

Thomas and Lady Harriot Bunbury's eldest daughter Mary Beatrice Teresa Bunbury was born on 17th February 1879. On 20th December 1916 she married Lt Col Hew Wakeham Tompson, CMG, Royal Hampshire Regt, only son of Col. Henry Stewart Tompson of Alderminster Lodge, Bournemouth. He died 26th July 1933. In 1958 she was living at Woodston in Winchester.

Mrs. Edward Charles Lentaigne

Thomas and Lady Harriot Bunbury's second daughter Cecilia Mary Bunbury was born on 18th March 1891 and married on 30th April 1919 to Colonel Edward Charles Lentaigne of Tallaght, Co. Dublin,, DSO, late 4th Gurkha Rifles, grandson and heir to the formidable Victorian character named Sir John Lentaigne, FRCSI, who was Inspector General of Prisons in Ireland from 1854-77. Their wedding appeared in The Gentlewoman of Saturday 31 May 1919: 'CAPTAIN E. C. LENTAIGNE, D.S.O. (of the 4th Gurkha Rifles), the eldest son a the late Sir John Lentaigne, and Miss Cecilia M. Bunbury the youngest daughter of Lady Harriot Bunbury (of "Cotswold House," Winchester), were married just recently at the Oratory, Brompton. Major C. H. Bunbury gave away his sister, who was attended by Master lan Selby-Nevill and Master Philip Morris, and Mr. Joseph Lentaigne was best man to his brother. The ceremony was performed by Father Crewse, the Superior of the Oratory, and a very large congregation witnessed the wedding, including :—Lady Harriot Bunbury, Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Bunbury, Miss Lentaigne, Mr. H. J. Bunbury, Lady Alice Dundas, Colonel and Mrs. Hew Tompson, Captain Dundas and Miss Dundas, the Hon. Mrs. William Dundas, Mr. Robert Dundas, Marie Lady de Freyne and the Hon. Lily and the Hon. Muriel French, Lady Hamilton Dalrymple, Captain the Hon. Hubert and Mrs. Preston, and Sir Henry and Lady Adamson."

Their only son John Lentaigne was killed at El Alamein while serving with the Rifle Brigade on 25th July 1942.

Their daughter, Mollie Lock, nee Lentaigne, lives in Zimbabwe turned 100 in May 2020. She was an artist and worked for Archibald Mcindoe, the plastic surgeon, drawing his operations. If you google Mollie Lentaigne, you will find a short interview with her broadcast on ITV when she speaks about her life at the East Grinstead Hospital where her drawings are now on display.

Also relevant to the Bunbury-Lentaigne archives is this marriage, recorded in The Sketch on Wednesday 15 October 1919: 'Mr. Joseph I. N. Lentaigne, third son of the late Sir John Lentaigne, was married to Miss Helen Evelyn Vida Haslam, elder daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lewis Haslam. The five bridesmaids were Miss Lilian Haslam, Miss Lentaigne, Miss May Dixon, Miss Clara Murphy, and Miss Dorothy Norrie, and the train-bearer, Miss Pamela Bunbury.' At the wedding, six-year-old Pamela experienced what the Daily Mail called 'church-fright'. Vida Lentaigne later moved to Termonfeckin, Co Louth, where she took in refugees at the start of World War Two. By chance, her home at Newtown House (now An Grianan) was formerly home to a branch of the McClintock family.


With immense thanks to Peter Bunbury, Janette McLeman Carnie (Association des amis d'Alfred de Vigny), Gill Miller, Anthony Bunbury, Dan Bunbury, Denise Bunbury-Westford, Chris Jeppesen (Legacies of British Slave Ownership), Lotty Bunbury, Vicky O'Mearain (nee Tindal), Richard Carruthers, Jacky Quarmby, Jack Mulcahy, Susann Anderson, Judith Gantley, Ryan Chan, Nicola Cassidy and others.


1. Herbert Palmer Cox was the son of John George Cox and Prisca Philpot. He was baptized on 29 September 1748 in St Martin in the Fields, Westminster, London. Herbert's name is found in the St Vincent Militia Commanders lists as Ensign in 1789, serving under Lieutenant Colonel John Greathead. Is it this man who leant his name to Herbert's son and Lydia's brother, Paul Greathead Cox, who died in childhood?

2. For further reading: Alfred de Vigny by Arnold Whitridge (1933); Alfred de Vigny by James Dolittle (1967); Vigny's Cinq-Mars: Dialogue on Political Power by Virginia Boggs Gunn (1975); Alfred De Vigny Et La Comedie-Francaise by Fernande Bassan (1984); Vigny: Les Destinees by Keith Wren (1985); Paradigm and Parody: Images of Creativity in French Romanticism by Henry F. Majewski (1989); The Novels of Alfred De Vigny: A Study of Their Form and Composition by Elaine K. Shwimer (1991); The Poetic Enigma of Alfeed de Vigny - The Rosetta Stone of Esoteric Literature by Denise Bonhomme (2006)

3. In 1825, Col. Edward WITHERINGTON, 9th Lancers, of Dublin, a brother in law of Theobald Wolfe TONE, married Ann Eugenia CHILES, of St Marylebone, in the British Embassy, Paris. Miss CHILES was said to be of the Island of Malta in the newspaper announcement of their wedding, but so far we have not found anything more about her. Their son Edward Bunbury WITHERINGTON died in 1841. A copy of his burial is posted on Ancestry and he is not given a 2nd name of Bunbury, which does not necessarily mean anything but you would expect see a full name. It says “Edward, son of Lieut.Col.Witherington of Her Majesty’s 9th Regiment of Dragoons, and Eugenia his wife, died April 8th 1841 aged 13 years and 11 months.”
Another of their children was Selina Mary Ann WITHERINGTON, baptised at Paris in 1828, who married John Henry Sheppard SADLER, at Ripon Cathedral in 1855. They were divorced a few years later when she absonded with a man named KELL. With thanks to Richard Carruthers of West Vancouver, British Columbia [2015].

If the Canada story is true, Hugh Mill Bunbury II's lifespan of 1800 - 1866 is exact with his distant cousin Captain William McClintock Bunbury of Lisnavagh. However, the Deaths page in the Gallon family bible gives a death date for Hugh Mills Bunbury of 3 May 1861. The 1866 date is assumed to have been sourced from the Cambridge University alumni record but needs to be double-checked ...

3a. Source: [S247] www.search.labs.familysearch.org).

4. The Times, Wednesday, Feb 20, 1833; pg. 6; Issue 15093; col C

5. The Times, Saturday, Apr 27, 1839; pg. 6; Issue 17027; col F and The Times, Saturday, May 25, 1839; pg. 6; Issue 17051;col A

6. The Times, Friday, Nov 10, 1854; pg. 1; Issue 21895; col A

7. The Times, Friday, Dec 29, 1939; pg. 9; Issue 48499; col F