Thomas Dumaresq

1729-1802. He was born in Jersey to a long-established family, being the son of John Greffier Dumaresq, and of his wife, Anne Bockham.

Dumaresq was commissioned lieutenant on 16 October 1755, and in April 1763 joined the new cutter Esther 6, serving out of Whitehaven and retaining her in Irish waters for the next two years.

The Battle of the Saintes 1782

Having commanded the sloop Spy in the Leeward Islands, he was promoted commander on 2 November 1772, and after returning home was posted captain on 23 January 1775. He recommissioned the Portland 50 at Sheerness for the flag of Vice-Admiral James Young in the Leeward Islands, for which station he sailed in April. Thereafter he spent most of his time at English Harbour, Antigua, but he did capture the American privateers Putnam off Newfoundland on 18 October 1776, and Eagle on 16 May 1778, prior to returning to England later that year.

In May 1779 Dumaresq commissioned the new Ulysses 44 and took her out to Jamaica. During September he was ordered to exchange with Captain John Thomas of the Trident 64, but before the transfer could take place the Ulysses was dismasted in one of the Great Hurricanes that swept through the Caribbean in October. During the following year Dumaresq returned home in command of a convoy, arriving in July and, paying the Trident off in September.

Having been appointed to the Repulse 64 in January 1782, he took her out to the Leeward Islands and fought at the Battle of the Saintes on 12 April. Following that action he removed to the Alfred 74 in succession to the late Captain William Bayne, which ship sailed to North America with the fleet in July and returned to England from Jamaica a year later, being paid off in July 1783.

Dumaresq was promoted rear-admiral on 12 April 1794, vice-admiral on 1 June 1795, and admiral on 1 January 1801. He died on 18 July 1802.

His daughter Charlotte married Dumaresq’s nephew, William, who inherited the admiral’s estate of Pelham Place, Newton Valence, Hampshire, which land had been purchased in 1782, and on which he had created a house and gardens.

Dumaresq’s obituary in the Naval Chronicle stated that he was ‘much beloved for his hospitality and truly benevolent heart.’ In his later years he boasted of not having had to consult a physician or a lawyer before the age of seventy-three.