John Dyke Acland

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Colonel Acland and Lord Sydney, The Archers, by Joshua Reynolds, 1769. In September 2005, the Tate Gallery acquired the painting for over UK£2.5 million (US$4.4 million).

Major John Dyke Acland (18 February 1746 – 31 October 1778 [1]), son of Sir Thomas Dyke Acland, 7th Baronet, was a British officer who fought in the American War of Independence and, later, a politician.[2]

Acland was an officer in the 20th Foot. He served under General Burgoyne in his invasion of northern New York in 1777.[3] On 7 October 1777, he was shot through the legs[3] and taken prisoner at the Battle of Bemis Heights, near Stillwater, New York. His wife, Lady Harriet ,[1] was allowed to attend in the American camp and was well-treated by the American forces.[3]

He was elected an MP in 1774.[2]

Acland was grateful for the treatment received when recuperating as a prisoner of war. Upon returning to England he challenged a Lieutenant Lloyd to a duel when the latter spoke poorly of Americans at a dinner party. Although he survived the duel, he caught a cold during it from which he died at Pixton Park in 1778.

His only son was the 8th Baronet but as he died young (1778–1785), the baronetcy passed to Major John's brother, Sir Thomas Dyke Acland, 9th Baronet.


  1. ^ a b Batty-Smith, Nigel. "John Dyke Acland Of Pixton". West Country Genealogy, Heraldry, and History. Retrieved 22 March 2006. 
  2. ^ a b Chambers Biographical Dictionary, ISBN 0-550-18022-2, page 6
  3. ^ a b c "John Dyke Acland". Harper's Encyclopedia of United States History. Volume 1. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1905. pp. 14–15. 

See also[edit]

Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Thomas Worsley
William Skrine
Member of Parliament for Callington
with William Skrine

Succeeded by
William Skrine
George Stratton