Humphrys genealogy

Genealogy research by Mark Humphrys.

My wife's ancestors - Kerr - Contents

John Manners Kerr

A miniature copy of a portrait, inherited in the Kerr/Gibbon family.
Written on the back: "Colonel Kerr?"
This must be John Manners Kerr, Lieutenant Colonel and Colonel in 1794-1808.
He did have a grandson who was a Colonel William Frederick Kerr, maybe around the 1860s, but the portrait is too early to be him.
See larger and full size. Photographed by me in 2016. See alternate shot and alternate shot.
See small shot. Photographed by me in 2007.

John Manners Kerr,
General in British Army, Sheriff of Merionethshire,
born 30 Oct 1766,
descendant of Robert III, King of Scotland and of Henry I.
See entry in tree by Jenny Poll.
See entry in Wyndham Marsh genealogy.
See entry in Maesmor tree by Lavinia Phillips.
His father was a surgeon in Northampton.

He was educ Rugby School, Warwickshire. Entered 1779.
See entry on p.68 of The Rugby Register, 1838.
See entry on p.49 of The Rugby Register, 1881.
See entry on p.77 of Rugby School Register, 1901.
Long career in British Army.
Appointed Ensign on 21 Feb 1785. [Obituary] says joined 111th Foot at Gibraltar, but it is unclear that 111th existed in 1785.
Became Lieutenant in 60th Foot on 24 Sept 1787.

West Indies:
He went with his regiment to Barbados in the West Indies. He was in the West Indies for over a decade.
Listed as Captain at mar 1791.

He mar 1stly, 25 Apr 1791, in Barbados, to Isabella Errington [born 17 Apr 1774, Barbados]. She was age 17. He was age 24.

Britain and France went to war in Feb 1793.
He was Captain of the 60th Foot in the attack on Tobago, which they captured from the French in Apr 1793.
Became Major 29 June 1794.
Became Lieutenant colonel 25 Oct 1794.
Stayed in West Indies until May 1795 [Obituary].
Appointed 1794 or 1795 commander of Northampton Regiment of Fencible Infantry with rank of Colonel-Commandant. This regiment was raised in 1793 by his father Dr. William Kerr. John Manners Kerr was their commander until the regiment disbanded in 1801.
The Northampton Fencibles were based in Ireland.
He transferred to the 62nd Foot in Mar 1798.
His son was bapt at Tiverton, Devon, in May 1799.
Appointed Colonel 1 Jan 1801.
He was Commander of the Forces in the islands of Grenada, Dominica, Barbados and St. Vincent 1801-04.
Child baptised in Northampton in Sept 1801.
He was appointed Brigadier General in West Indies on 5 Feb 1802 [Obituary].

England and Ireland:
[Obituary] says he returned to England due to ill health in June 1804. Then from Sept 1804 to June 1806 he was on the staff of the North West District of England, with command of the volunteer force of Manchester and neighbourhood.
Child baptised in Northampton in Nov 1804.
[Obituary] says in July 1806 he was appointed to the staff in Ireland.
However this conflicts with the Almanacks at the time, which say he went to Ireland earlier.
He is listed in [Dublin Almanack, 1804] as serving in Ireland as "Colonel" with the 62nd Foot.
He is listed as Colonel with the 62nd Foot in [Dublin Almanack, 1805]. He is serving in Ireland.
His son was born in Armagh in Nov 1806.
He is listed among the Brigadier Generals in [Dublin Almanack, 1807]. He is with the 62nd Foot, serving in Ireland.
He is listed as Brigadier General on the Army staff of Ireland in [Dublin Almanack, 1808].
He was appointed Major-General 25 Apr 1808.
On 26 Sept 1808 he left Irish staff to a position in England.

Isabella dies, 1808:
She died 14 Oct 1808, age 34 yrs. Leaving him with small children.
She was bur 21 Oct 1808, Chelsea Old Church, Chelsea, London. See entry from here.
Many years later, in a letter of 1870, her son John James Kerr (born 1799) recalls "the ineffable impression made in childhood of my own dear mother".

John Manners was Commander of 5th Royal Veteran Battalion 1810-14. Appointed 25 June 1810.
He is listed among the Major-Generals in [Dublin Almanack, 1811]. He is with the 5th Royal Veteran Battalion.
Appointed Lieutenant-General in 1813.
He is listed among the Lieutenant-Generals in [Dublin Almanack, 1814]. He is with the 5th Royal Veteran Battalion.
[Burkes LG, 1886] describes him as of "The Great House, co. Northampton". Rugby School Register says this house was in Northampton. This house is unidentified. It may refer to his father's house, Sheep St, Northampton.
At marriage 1814 he is described as of the Parish of St.Sepulchre in Northampton, which would include Sheep St.
Seems to have no connection to Wales until his 2nd mar.

He mar 2ndly, 14 Dec 1814, to Margaret Davies [born c.1770, Plas Issa, Wales]. No issue.
She was dau of Hugh Davies by his wife Katherine Owen, heiress of Plas Issa (now Plas Isaf), Llangar parish, Merionethshire, N Wales.
They mar at Llangar church (the church for Plas Issa). See entry.
See marriage notice on p.674 of The Gentleman's Magazine, Volume 84, Part 2, July-Dec 1814. This thought it was 15 Dec.

His dau married at Northampton in 1816.
They moved at some point to live at her house, Plas Issa, Llangar, Merionethshire, Wales.
See 1820 letter from him. From Paris, 27 January 1820.
His father died 4 Sept 1824.
[1824 deed] is dated 14 - 15 Oct 1824. He is described as of of Plas Issa, Llangar.

Margaret dies, 1825:
She died at Plas Issa, 15 Sept 1825, age c.55 yrs, NOT 1820.
See notice on p.383 of The Monthly magazine, 1 Nov 1825.
She was bur 20 Sept 1825, Llangar church (near Plas Issa).
Kerr inherited Plas Issa under her will.
He is listed as Lieutenant-General in [Treble Almanac 1829].

He mar 3rdly, 15 Jan 1829, to Catherine Lloyd [bapt 2 Dec 1776, descendant of Edward the Elder].
She was co-heiress of Maesmor and Trefnant.
They married at Llangwm (the church for Maesmor). He was age 62. She was age 52.

General, 1830:
He became a General 1830.
Maesmor was re-modelled 1830 in Neo-Tudor style.
He is listed as "of Plas Issa" in 1837. See Gwynedd Archives, ZQS/M1837/22.
Sheriff of Merionethshire, 1838-39:
He was Sheriff of Merionethshire 1838-39. Described as of Plas Issa at his appointment as Sheriff in 1838.
Kalendar of Gwyedd lists "John Manners Kerr, of Plas Issa Esq. High Sheriff of Merionethshire 1 February 1838-9".
At some point before 1841 they moved to Maesmor Hall.
He sold Plas Issa to Colonel Vaughan of Rug, Corwen.
They are listed in 1841 census as living Maesmor Hall. He is "Army Pensioner". Her sisters are with them. There are 5 female servants ("F.S.") and 3 male servants ("M.S.").
His will is dated 24 Mar 1842.

John Manners Kerr dies, 1843:
He died 1 Apr 1843, Maesmor Hall, age 76 yrs.
(todo) See death of John Manners Kerr, Corwen, [GRO.UK] 2nd qr 1843, 27 113.
See notice in The Belfast Newsletter, 11 Apr 1843.
He was bur at Llangwm church. There was a monument to him there.
There is a memorial to him at Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Northampton, beside his father's grave.
Will proved 13 May 1843.
Catherine is listed in 1851 census as living Maesmor Hall. She is widow. Her step-grandson William Kerr is with her. Her sisters are with her. There are 8 servants.

Catherine dies, 1859:
She died 3 Apr 1859, Maesmor Hall, age 82 yrs.
She was bur Llangwm.
John Manners Kerr had issue by his 1st wife Isabella Errington:

  1. Mary Kerr,
    born 2 June 1793, NOT Elizabeth,
    described as "only daughter" at mar.
    Will of Arthur Augustus Gibbon lists "A head in crayon which had been done by Mrs. Alston (Mary Kerr before marriage)". See here.
    Listed at Northampton at mar.
    She mar Thur 20 June 1816, Northampton, St Sepulchre, to Justinian Alston and had issue.
    See entry from here. One of the witnesses is "William Kerr" who must be her grandfather.
    See mar notice in The Freeman's Journal, Mon 1 July 1816.
    See mar notice on p.84 of The European Magazine, and London Review, Volume 70, July-Dec 1816.

  2. John James Kerr,
    of Maesmor, Wales,
    John James Manners Kerr,
    born 18 Mar 1799, eldest son,
    born Tiverton, Devon [census].
    He was bapt 14 May 1799, Tiverton. See index.

  3. George Kerr,
    born 17 Aug 1801,
    bapt 7 Sept 1801, Northampton, St Sepulchre. See entry from here.

  4. Frederick Kerr.
    He was born 6 Oct 1804 [bapt entry], Northampton. Some people read this as 15 Oct but it seems clearly 6 Oct.
    He was bapt 26 Nov 1804, Northampton, All Saints. See entry from here.

  5. Rev. William Frederick Kerr,
    born 15 Nov 1806.
    [1851 census] and [1861 census] say he was born in Armagh in Ireland.
    His father was serving in Ireland at this time.

John Manners Kerr listed as Colonel with the 62nd Foot in [Dublin Almanack, 1804].
He is serving in Ireland.
See full size.

John Manners Kerr listed among the Lieutenant-Generals in [Dublin Almanack, 1814].
He is with the 5th Royal Veteran Battalion.
See full size.

John Manners Kerr listed among the Lieutenant-Generals in [Treble Almanac 1829, p.142].


1820 letter

Letter from John Manners Kerr to A. Campbell. From Paris, 27 January 1820.


Signature of John Manners Kerr.
From the 1820 letter.


Obituary in Gentleman's Magazine 1843

Obituary of John Manners Kerr, pp.94-95 of Gentleman's Magazine, vol.20 (July-Dec 1843).
This says he died at "Maesmor heath".
As far as we can tell, this placename only appears in the obituary of John Manners Kerr in 1843, and so is probably an error.



Sources yet to be consulted

Donation Drive

Please donate to support this site. I have spent a great deal of time and money on this research. Research involves travel and many expenses. Some research "things to do" are not done for years, because I do not have the money to do them.
Please Donate Here to support the ongoing research and to keep this website free.

Help       Conventions       Abbreviations       How to read the trees

Privacy policy       Adoption policy       Image re-use policy       New 250 G VPS server.