James Craggs the Elder

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James Craggs, 1710

James Craggs the Elder (bap. 10 June 1657 – 16 March 1721) was an English politician and the father of James Craggs the Younger.

Life[edit]

A son of Anthony Craggs of Holbeck, Durham, he was baptized on 10 June 1657. After following various callings in London, Craggs, who was a person of considerable financial ability, entered the service of the Duchess of Marlborough, and through her influence became in 1702 member of parliament for Grampound, retaining his seat until 1713. He was in business as an army clothier and held several official positions, becoming joint Postmaster-General in 1715; and, making the most of his opportunities in all these capacities, he amassed a great deal of money. Craggs also increased his wealth by mixing in the affairs of the South Sea Company, but after his death an act of parliament confiscated all the property which he had acquired since December 1719. He left an enormous fortune when he died in disgrace for his involvement in the South Sea Bubble, a month after the death of his son. It is possible that Craggs the elder committed suicide.

His wife was Elizabeth Richards, daughter of Jacob Richards. Their children included James Craggs the Younger, and Anne Craggs, wife of Robert Nugent, 1st Earl Nugent, Elizabeth wife of Edward Eliot and Margaret wife, firstly of Samuel Trefusis and secondly of Sir John Hinde Cotton.

References[edit]

Parliament of England
Preceded by
Sir William Scawen
Francis Scobell
Member of Parliament for Grampound
1702–1707
With: Francis Scobell 1702–1707
Succeeded by
Parliament of Great Britain
Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Parliament of England
Member of Parliament for Grampound
1707–1713
With: Francis Scobell 1707–1708
Thomas Scawen 1708–1710
Thomas Coke 1710–1713
Succeeded by
Thomas Coke
Andrew Quick
Military offices
Preceded by
John Pulteney
Clerk of the Deliveries of the Ordnance
1703–1711
Succeeded by
Newdigate Ousley
Preceded by
Richard King
Clerk of the Deliveries of the Ordnance
1714–1715
Succeeded by
Thomas Frankland
Political offices
Preceded by
Sir Thomas Frankland, Bt
Sir John Evelyn, Bt
Postmaster General of the United Kingdom
1715–1720
With: The Lord Cornwallis
Succeeded by
Galfridus Walpole
Edward Carteret