BARING, Henry Bingham (1804-1869), of 13 Eaton Place, Mdx.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1820-1832, ed. D.R. Fisher, 2009
Available from Cambridge University Press

Constituency

Dates

1831 - 1832
1832 - 1868

Family and Education

b. 4 Mar. 1804, 1st s. of Henry Baring* and 1st w. Maria Matilda, da. of William Bingham of Philadelphia, former senator, USA. educ. Christ Church, Oxf. 1822. m. (1) 30 June 1827, Lady Augusta Brudenell (d. 8 Jan. 1853), da. of Robert Brudenell†, 6th earl of Cardigan, 3s. 2da. (1 d.v.p.); (2) 11 Feb. 1854, Maria de Martinoff of Moscow,1 s.p. suc. fa. 1848. d. 25 Apr. 1869.

Offices Held

Ensign 5 Ft. Nov. 1824; cornet 1 Life Gds. Dec. 1824, lt. 1827, capt. 1829; maj. army 1830; ret. 1834.

Ld. of treasury Sept. 1841-July 1846.

Biography

Baring, whose parents’ marriage ended in a widely publicized divorce in 1825, embarked on a career in the army and took no part in the family merchant bank until much later in life: he became a partner in 1858, but had probably withdrawn by 1867.2 His first wife was described by Lady Holland at the time of their marriage in 1827 as ‘very pretty, but fickle and coquettish’.3 At the general election of 1830 he offered for Canterbury as an independent supporter of the duke of Wellington’s ministry. Although this was at variance with his father’s Whiggish politics, it was apparently the latter’s friendship with the home secretary Peel that had provided Baring with his introduction to the constituency. Peel was confident that ‘his political feelings are very strongly in favour of the present government’, and another observer thought he would defy family tradition by voting with the administration. These assertions went untested, as he was defeated.4 He was almost certainly the soldier who, as part of an escort, suffered a harangue from King William after a stone was thrown at the royal coach, 24 Feb. 1831.5 He was the beneficiary of a political schism among his relatives at the general election that spring, when he was returned for Callington by his uncle Alexander Baring*, an opponent of the Grey ministry’s reform bill, in the room of his cousin William Bingham Baring, who had supported it.

His professional commitments possibly account for his indifferent record of attendance in the Commons. He divided against the second reading of the reintroduced reform bill, 6 July, but did not feature in any of the published minority lists during the summer; he voted against the bill’s passage, 21 Sept. 1831. Having been out of London, he complained of the precipitate introduction of a motion regarding the violent conduct of his cousin William in the arrest of the Hampshire farmers Thomas and Caroline Deacle, 20 July, but he voted in the minority for a full investigation of the case, 27 Sept. He considered the report of the Dublin election committee to be ‘too strong’ in its condemnation of government interference, 23 Aug., but explained to The Times that he had not divided on the question, as he felt unable to ‘concur in the direct negative that no undue influence was exercised’.6 He voted against the second reading of the revised reform bill, 17 Dec. 1831, the enfranchisement of Tower Hamlets, 28 Feb., and the third reading, 22 Mar., and paired against the second reading of the Irish bill, 25 May 1832. He divided against ministers on the Russian-Dutch loan, 26 Jan., 12 July. He voted in the minority for his uncle’s bill to remove Members’ immunity from prosecution for debt, 27 June 1832.

With Callington disfranchised by the Reform Act, Baring stood for Marlborough as a Conservative at the general election of 1832, on the interest of his wife’s kinsman Lord Ailesbury. He denied being motivated by the pursuit of ‘patronage, emolument or ... personal advantage’ and advocated the immediate abolition of slavery; he was returned after a contest.7 He was an active organizer for the Conservatives during the general election of 1837 and subsequently served as an assi