UPTON, John Henry, 2nd Baron Templetown [I] (1771-1846), of Castle Upton, co. Antrim.
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Family and Education
b. 8 Nov. 1771, 1st s. of Clotworthy, 1st Baron Templetown [I], and bro. of Hon. Arthur Percy Upton* and Hon. Fulk Greville Howard*. educ. Palgrave Suff.; Eton 1787-8; R. mil. acad. Berlin. m. 7 Oct. 1796, Lady Mary Montagu, da. of John Montagu†, 5th Earl of Sandwich, 4s. 3da. suc. fa. as 2nd Baron Templetown [I] 16 Apr. 1785; cr. Visct. Templetown [I] 13 Feb. 1806.
Commdt. Templepatrick vols. 1803.
Reports reached England in 1793 that Templetown had married Miss Rietz, a natural daughter of the King of Prussia, at Berlin; but it was apparently her mother he quixotically proposed to and he called himself a bachelor when he married Lady Mary Montagu in 1796.1 Soon afterwards he proceeded to Ireland full of benevolent intentions towards his tenantry there. He voted for the Union and at that time declined a step in the peerage. He was there ‘on his country’s service’ when his brother-in-law Lord Hervey, now Earl of Bristol, named him as his successor to his seat for Bury in 1803, so his brother canvassed for him.2
Templetown is not known to have spoken in debate. Nor, until 1806, did he leave any record of opposition; he was listed a supporter of Pitt by the Treasury in September 1804 and July 1805. On 14 Oct. 1805 Lord Hawkesbury, his patron’s brother-in-law, recommended him to the viceroy for promotion in the Irish peerage, explaining that Templetown had regretted his refusal in 1800 and that both Lord Sidmouth and Pitt acknowledged his claims. He became only a viscount. He voted against the Grenville ministry, both on Ellenborough’s seat in the cabinet and on the repeal of Pitt’s Additional Force Act, 3 Mar., 30 Apr. 1806. The former vote accorded with Lord Bristol’s line, but did he know that Bristol had decided to support ministers on the latter? Nevertheless he voted against the Portland ministry on Brand’s motion, 9 Apr. 1807, and remained in opposition thereafter. Writing to Lord Grenville about Templetown’s claims to a representative peerage in 1810, Bristol gave credit to the ‘handsome manner in which Lord Templetown has adopted my political feelings’.3
Templetown’s votes in the Parliament of 1807 were selective and perhaps he was mustered for most of them. He voted in the first two divisions of the Parliament; against the Copenhagen expedition and against the mutiny bill, 3 Feb., 14 Mar. 1808. On 30 May 1808 he voted for the admission of Catholics to the Bank of Ireland directorate. He opposed the convention of Cintra, 21 Feb. 1809, and voted for investigation of alleged ministerial corruption, 25 Apr. Except on 5 Mar. 1810, when he may have paired, he opposed Perceval on all the divisions of January-March 1810 and voted against Burdett’s committal to the Tower, 5 Apr. The Whigs listed him ‘present opposition’. He voted for sinecure reform, 17 May, but against parliamentary reform, 21 May 1810. He joined opposition on the adjournment and on the Regency question, 29 Nov. 1810, 1 Jan. 1811. In the session of 1812 he supported Morpeth’s motion on Ireland, 4 Feb.; Turton’s motion 27 Feb.; voted against the orders in council, 3 Mar.; for Catholic relief, 24 Apr., and for a more efficient administration, 21 May.
Templetown did not seek re-election in 1812 and subsequently devoted much of his time to the improvement of his Irish estates. In 1831 Earl Grey acknowledged his claims to an English peerage, but to his mortification they were rejected by Melbourne in 1835. He died 21 Sept. 1846.4
Ref Volumes: 1790-1820
Author: Winifred Stokes
- 1. The Times, 23 Mar. 1793; Gent. Mag. (1793), i. 280; W. H. Upton, Upton Family Recs. 112.