Saturday, 6 November 2010

A Tale of Two Lovelaces - Lord Hurley & the Governer of New York

In an earlier post, about the town of Hurley in New York state mention was made that it was founded by a Baron Hurley.

On searching for further info on the good (?) Baron, I found this little snippet:

Which reads:

May 21. Dy'd Robert. Harley, Earl of Oxford and Earl Mortimer, Baron Hurley of Wigmore, Knight of the most noble Order of the Garter, one of the Governors of the Charter-House, &c. in the 64th Year of his Age. He was descended from a Family of great Antiquity and Note in the County of Salop at the Time of the Conquest. He was Member of Parliament for New- Radnor, and Speaker of the House of Commons, in thetwo last Parliaments of King William, and in the First of Queen Anne. In December, 1701, he was chosen Arbitrator for uniting the two India Companies; and in 1702, Queen Anne appointed him one of the Commissioners for treating of an Union with Scotland. He was also a Member for New-Radnor, in the second Parliament of »he said Queen, who, in 1704, admitted him a Member of her Privy Council, and made him Principal Secretary of State. In 1706, her Majestv appointed him one of the Commissioners for treating of a further Union with Scotland ; and in 1708, he was mude Cttfios Rotulorum of the Shire of Radnor; in 1710, her Majestv made him one of the Commissioners of the Treasury, one of her Cabinet-Council, and Chancellor, and Under-Treafurer of the Exchequer. On the 8th •f March, 1710-u, a Frenchman, who went by the Name •f Marquess de Guifcard, attempted his Life by slabbing him at the Council-Board, with a Penknife. In May following, the Queen created him a Peer of Great Jfritmin, by the Name, Style, and Title abovemention'd ; and on the 29th of that Month, constituted him Lord High Treasurer of Great Britain. On the 26th of October, 1712, he was elected Knight Companion of the most noble Order of the Garter, install'd in August following at Windsor, and the fame Year was chosen Governor of the South-Sea Company, of which he had been the chief Founder or Regulator: About the same Time he was also chosen one of Governors of the CharterJfouse. Soon after King George's Accession to the Throne, he was impeach'd by the House of Commons of High Treason, and other High Crimes and Misdemeanors, and thereupon was sent to the Tower, where he continu'd about 3 Years, when being brought to Tryal by his Peers, he was acquitted of that Impeachment. During the Time he was Prime Minister, he was easy and disengag'd in private Conversation, with such a Weight of Affairs upon his Shoulders. He was a Man of great Learning, and as great a Favourer and Protector of it. Intrepid by Nature, as well as by the Consciousness of his own Integrity, and would have chosen rather to fall by an Impeachment, than to be sav'd by an Act of Grace : Sagacious to view into the . remotest Consequences of Things, by which all Difficulties fled before him. He was a courteous Neighbour, ft. firm and affectionate Friend, and a kind, generous, and placable Enemy, sacrificing his just Resentments not only to publick Good, but to common Intercession and Acknowledgement. He was a Despiscr ofMotey, and what is yet most rare, an uncorrupt Minister of State. He was twice marry'd : His first Wife was E'hmbeth, Daughter of Thomas Foley of Whitley-Court in the County ot Worcester, Esq; Sister to Thomas first Lord Fo'ey, by whom he had Issue one Son and two Daughters, Edward ' Lord Hurley, by whom he was succeeded in Honour and Estate. Elizabeth, who marry'd the Marquess of Carmarthen, Son of Peregrine Osborn, Duke of Leeds, but dy'd in 1713 ; and Abigail, his second Daughter, marry'd to George Hay, Lord Duplin, asterwards Earl of Kincul in Scotland. His second Wife was Sarah, Daughter of Thomas M'ddleton, Esq; Son of Sir K»&k Middleton, Bart, by whom he never had Issue.

This would undoubtedly seem a different Baron Hurley to the Francis Lovelace, Baron Hurley of Ireland mentioned in the Hurley, NY posting.

Francis Lovelace or Robert Harley? Will the real Baron Hurley arise?

The plot thickens though, on researching Francis Lovelace it seems that a Richard Lovelace built a mansion at Hurley, Berkshire, which I touched on in another post, so we have almost come in full circle and it seems this could be a link between Hurley in Berks, and Hurley in NY state via the Lovelaces (though distinctly separate families!).

Sadly it seems Richard Lovelace built his mansion on the ruins of Hurley monastery (with some monastic rooms making up part of the mansion) and went on expedition against the Spaniards.

To quote the Royal Berkshire History web-site:

The Priory’s Infimary, to the east, was built upon by Ladye Place, the home of the Lovelaces from 1545. It was named after the Virgin Mary to whom the priory had been dedicated. Richard Lovelace sailed with Sir Francis Drake and greatly improved his house with his share of the Spanish booty. He was created Lord Lovelace of Hurley in 1627, and his monument can be seen in the church.

It seems Lovelace (Lord Hurley's) mansion cellars were used to plot against James II in favour of the foreign usurper William III (the hated King Billy), so Hurley became a centre of Hanovarian conspiring.

The link below ends the chapter on the Lovelace family by stating:
The Lovelace family was ennobled by Charles I., who in the third year of
his reign, created Richard Lovelace, Baron Hurley, which title became
extinct in 1736.
 Francis Lovelace - the namesake of Hurley, NY - on the other hand, was made Governor of the province of New York from 1668 to 1672.

An entry on his page on Wikipedia, states:

Francis Lovelace, Governor of New York
Early genealogists confused Francis with an identically named son of Richard, 1st Lord Lovelace of Hurley, due to a pamphlet issued at the time of his appointment mistakenly asserting that he was the brother of the said Richard. The confusion has also spread to more modern historians.
So we must be careful not to confuse the two Lovelace families, as the home page oh Hurley, NY appears to have done.

Was Francis Lovelace Baron of Ireland (a supporter of Charles II) as well as governor of New York? Or was Hurley, NY named after the ennobled Lovelaces (supporters of William III) whose manorial home was in Hurley, Berks. and the Americans have become confused between the two Lovelace families?

If I find out more I will return to this... and of course I'd be hapy to hear from anyone who could shed some light on this.

Lovelace, Baron Hurley (see 'CURIOUS PARTICULARS RELATING TO HURLEY, IN BERKSHIRE' the fourth article down), written in 1908.
Notable People of Berkshire

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