HOLMES, Charles (1711-61).

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1754-1790, ed. L. Namier, J. Brooke., 1964
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1 June 1758 - 21 Nov. 1761

Family and Education

bap. 19 Sept. 1711, 5th s. of Henry Holmes, and bro. of Thomas Holmes.  unm.

Offices Held

Lt. R.N. 1734; capt. 1748; in the West Indies 1741-1748; in N. America 1756-8; commanded a squadron on the rivers Weser, Elbe, and Ems, and took town of Emden 1758; r.-adm. 1758; in expedition to Quebec 1759; c.-in.c. in Jamaica 1760- d.


On the death of Ralph Jenison, Newcastle wrote to Thomas Holmes, 16 May 1758, that he meant to recommend to Holmes ‘a very honest gentleman’ but must speak to the King before naming him. This letter crossed one from Holmes written from Newport the same day: ‘my brother, Capt. Charles Holmes, by the united desire and approbation of the corporation and myself, intends offering himself as candidate in the room of Mr. Jenison’. Newcastle replied that nobody could be more agreeable to him than Charles Holmes—‘a proof to you how much I desire and depend upon your friendship and of both your brothers. It will be necessary for me to mention this affair to the King, before I can in form give you an answer.’ The King approved, and Newcastle wrote on 20 May to Lord Portsmouth, governor of the Isle of Wight:

I know the Commodore extremely well, and have a very good opinion of him, and he has given all the assurances I can desire of attachment to the King and his service. I acquainted his Majesty yesterday with this affair, and the King agrees with me that it will be for his services that Commodore Holmes should come in at Newport.

On 2 June Holmes reported that his brother had been elected unanimously.1

On 16 Dec. 1758, Holmes, ordered to join Saunders and the Western Squadron, wrote to Newcastle to remind him of a promise of the Jamaica Command, in which he feared he might be supplanted in his absence—‘no person is better acquainted with the station of Jamaica than I am; or will, I believe, be more agreeable to the gentlemen of the island’.2

He died in Jamaica, 21 Nov. 1761.

Ref Volumes: 1754-1790

Author: Sir Lewis Namier


  • 1. Add. 32880, ff. 106, 109-10, 126, 160, 162, 307.
  • 2. Add. 32886, ff. 344-5.