[From ManxNoteBook vol i,1885]
THE DESCENDANTS OF WILLIAM
CHRISTIAN (ILIAM DHOAN)
ARMS-AZURE, a chevron humetty between three
Cups OR, on a canton ARGENT, an anchor erect, with
part of the cable round the stock PROPER
CREST-OUT of a naval coronet OR, a Unicorn's head ARGENT, collared GULES
MOTTOS-Salus per Christum and Perseverando
(BORN APRIL 168, DIED
JANY. 1662-3), RECEIVER-
GENERAL, WAS THE ,
3RD SON OF DEEMSTER
EWAN CHRISTIAN, of Milntown,
who presented him with the property of Ronaldsway, of which, in 1643, he accepted a lease1 for three lives, from James, Earl of Derby, on condition of surrendering the ancient "tenure of the straw." By his wife, Elizabeth,2 he had eight sons and one daughter. Ewan, the eldest died in infancy ; George, (born 1635, died 1694, buried at Malew), obtained possession of Ronaldsway, which had been confiscated on his father's death, in the autumn of 1663 ; for ,having exhibited his complaint to his Majesty in Council," it was ordered " that intire restitution be made of all the said estate."3 Probably, owing to the expense attending this appeal, we find that, in 1677, he held only half the estate, and moreover, that "the houses on the said estate" were "decayed and dilapidated."4 His only son, William, succeeded him, but in 1706, he was ejected, and "John Corrin5 entered . . . by virtue of our Honourable Lord's decree."6 Christian appealed against this, and, in 1716, is again "entered by virtue of his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales his order in Council."7 In 1720, "having contracted very considerable debts by reason of a long and expensive law suit in recovering my estate of Ronaldsway" he was obliged to sell it.8 He had an only daughter, Elizabeth, who died without issue.
Ewan, (born 1637, died 1671, at Ronaldsway, buried at Malew), the third son, petitioned Charles II. "that those persons, who had been the judge and jurors upon that tryall of his father . . . may be brought upp before your Matie to give an accompt of their said proceedings." 9
Of the next two sons, John and William, nothing is known. Mary (born 1641) married Charles Stanley, of Ballacaighen, in Rushen, and had issue. The Stanleys of Ballacaighen, were a younger branch of the Derby family.
Patricius (born 1644) married Ann Moore, of Pulrose, and had three sons and one daughter. It is not known what has become of his descendants. He lived at Ballaquayle, in Braddan, and was a member of the House of Keys in 1699. The eighth son, Charles (born 1649, died 1699 without issue), was a Major in the army.
It is only the descendants of the seventh son, Thomas (born 1646, died 1700), whom we can trace to the present day. He seems to have had charge of the family property in Lancashire10 and to have carried on a merchant's business in Liverpool. He married Mary, daughter of the well-known Colonel Birch, who was governor of Liverpool under the Common-wealth, and had issue Hugh. Hugh (born 1679, died 1729), was captain and owner of a merchant vessel. His son Thomas (born 1716, died 1752) was a Captain in the Royal Navy. Hepworth Dixon, in " Her Majesty's Tower," mentions that he took out letters of marque and captured several Spanish galleons.
By his wife, Ann Hughes, he had issue Sir Hugh Cloberry, K.B. (born 1747, died 1798) Rear-Admiral of the White. Between 1779 and 1783 he took part in various actions in the West Indies, and in 1796 he was appointed to the chief command there. Sir Ralph Abercromby, in his despatch of the 31st May, in that year, announcing the surrender of St. Lucia, wrote "Rear-Admiral Sir Hugh Christian, and the Royal Navy, have never ceased to show the utmost alacrity in forwarding the public service. To their skill and unremitting labour the success which has attended his Majesty's arms is in a great measure due."11 Early in 1798 he was commander-in-chief at the Cape of Good Hope, where he died suddenly in the November of the same year. " His services . . . had been arduous and useful ; and by his death, the country lost an attentive, able, and excellent officer" 12 By his wife Ann, daughter of Barnabas Leigh, of Thorley, in the Isle of Wight, he had issue three daughters and two sons. The daughters were all married, Ann, to Major General Frederick, Baron Hompesch, Mary to Count William Bylandt, and Joanna to Mr. R. Robinson. The eldest of the sons, Hood Hanway (born 1784, died 1849), went into the Navy and was made a Commander at the very early age of sixteen, "for the gallant way in which he commanded a division of boats at the siege of Genoa."13 In 1809 he took part in the ill-fated Walcheren expedition, after which he saw no active service. In 1838 he was made Rear-Admiral. He had four sons and three daughters, of whom the only survivor is Mrs. Arthur Traherne,. of Glan-y-dur, Brecknockshire. Sir Hugh's younger son, Hugh George (born 1787, died 1861) was a very able East Indian Civilian. He left the college at Fort William "with honours never before or since surpassed."14 ,Whilst in lndia he held the appointment of Collector and Magistrate of various districts in the North-West Provinces, member of the Board of Revenue, and Commissioner for the settlement of the conquered and ceded Provinces."15 His eldest son Samuel, and two surviving sons, Major Hugh Henry Christian, J.P., Provost of Portobello, and the Rev. Frederick Christian, Vicar of Wingfield, in Derbyshire, have issue.
1 Indenture dated 19Car. I., in Record Office.
2 Surname unknown
3 Manx Society, VOL XXVII. P. 55.
4 "Order from the Worshipll Richard Stevenson, Esqr., Depty. Govr., bearinge date ye 26th of 9br 1677."
5 The Corrin claim had been advanced more than sixty years before. See Manx Society, Vol. III, p. 17.
6 Lib. Vast. 1706.
7 do. 1716.
8 Deed of Sale. William Christian to James Somerville.
9 Manx Society, Vol. XXVI, P. 47.
10 Manx Society, Vol. XXVI, P. 42 : "That yor peticoner hath appealed to be tryed by yor Mats. Lawes of England, where he many years lived and hath an estate, but it was refused." (William Christian's Petition) ; P. 55 : In George Christian's Complaint: " Whereas the said William Christian the accused was one of two lives remaining in an estate in Lancashire."
11 NAVAL CHRONICLE, Vol. XXI, p. 187. t
12 NAVAL CHRONICLE, Vol. XXI. p. 188.
13 " ROMANTIC ANNALS OF A NAVAL FAMILY," P. 239, by Mrs. Traberne. Those who wish to learn more about the Christian Family are advised to read this delightful book.
14 " BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF HUGH GEORGE CHRISTIAN," by Major Hugh Christian, p. 10. A very interesting and graphic memoir.
15 Do., p. 151.