Alexander Baring, 1st Baron Ashburton

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The Lord Ashburton

AlexanderBaring.jpg
President of the Board of Trade
In office
15 December 1834 – 8 April 1835
MonarchWilliam IV
Prime MinisterSir Robert Peel, Bt
Preceded byCharles Poulett Thomson
Succeeded byCharles Poulett Thomson
Master of the Mint
In office
23 December 1834 – 8 April 1835
MonarchWilliam IV
Prime MinisterSir Robert Peel, Bt
Preceded byHon. James Abercromby
Succeeded byHenry Labouchere
Personal details
Born27 October 1774 (1774-10-27)
Died12 May 1848 (1848-05-13) (aged 73)
Longleat, Wiltshire
NationalityBritish
Political partyTory
Spouse(s)
Anne Louisa Bingham
(m. 1798; his death 1848)
Children9
ParentsSir Francis Baring, Bt
Harriet Herring Baring

Alexander Baring, 1st Baron Ashburton PC (27 October 1774 – 12 May 1848), of The Grange in Hampshire, of Ashburton in Devon and of Buckenham Tofts near Thetford in Norfolk, was a British politician and financier, and a member of the Baring family. Baring was the second son of Sir Francis Baring, 1st Baronet, and of Harriet, daughter of William Herring.

Early life[edit]

Alexander was born on 27 October 1774. He was the second son born to Harriet (née Herring) Baring (1750–1804) and Sir Francis Baring, 1st Baronet (1740–1810). Among his siblings was Maria (the mother of Francis Stainforth), Sir Thomas Baring, 2nd Baronet, Henry Baring (a Member of Parliament for Bossiney[1] and Colchester),[2] and George Baring (who founded the Hong Kong trading house of Dent & Co.). His father and his uncle, John Baring established the London merchant house of John and Francis Baring Company, which eventually became Barings Bank.[3]

His paternal grandparents were Elizabeth (née Vowler) Baring and Johann Baring, a wool merchant who emigrated to England in 1717 from Germany and established the family in England. His maternal grandfather was merchant William Herring of Croydon and among his mother's family was her cousin, Thomas Herring, Archbishop of Canterbury.[4]

Career[edit]

Alexander was brought up in his father's business, and became a partner at Hope & Co. He was sent to the United States for various land deals, and formed wide connections with wealthy American families. In 1807 Alexander became a partner in the family firm, along with his brothers Thomas and Henry, and the name was changed to Baring Brothers & Co. When Henry Hope died in 1811, the London offices of Hope & Co. merged with Baring Brothers & Co.[5]

Political career[edit]

Baring sat in parliament for Taunton between 1806 and 1826, for Callington between 1826 and 1831, for Thetford between 1831 and 1832 and North Essex between 1832 and 1835. He regarded politics from the point of view of the business man and opposed the orders-in-council for "the restrictions on trade with the United States in 1812," and, in 1826, the act for the suppression of small banknotes as well as other reform. He accepted the post Chancellor of the Exchequer in the Duke of Wellington's projected ministry of 1832; but afterwards, alarmed at the men in parliament, declared "he would face a thousand devils rather than such a House of Commons."[6] After the Panic of 1847, Baring headed an external bimetallist movement hoping to prevent the undue restriction of the currency.[7]

Baring was Master of the Mint in Robert Peel's government and, on Peel's retirement in 1835, was raised to the peerage as Baron Ashburton, of Ashburton, in the County of Devon,[8] a title previously held by John Dunning, 1st Baron Ashburton. In 1842 he was again sent to America, and the same year concluded the Webster–Ashburton Treaty. A compromise was settled concerning the north-east boundary of Maine, the extradition of certain criminals was arranged, each state agreed to maintain a squadron of at least eighty guns on the coast of Africa for the suppression of the slave trade, and the two governments agreed to unite in an effort to persuade other powers to close all slave markets within their territories. Despite his earlier attitude, Lord Ashburton disapproved of Peel's free trade and opposed the Bank Charter Act of 1844.[6]

Ashburton was a trustee of the British Museum and of the National Gallery, a privy councillor and D.C.L. He published, besides several speeches, An Enquiry into the Causes and Consequences of ... Orders in Council (1808), and The Financial and Commercial Crisis Considered (1847).[6]

Personal life[edit]

On 23 August 1798, Ashburton married Anne Louisa Bingham (1782–1848), daughter of Ann Willing Bingham and William Bingham of Philadelphia, who served as a U.S. Senator and was one of the richest men in America, having made his fortune during the American Revolution through trading and ownership of privateers.[9]. Her maternal grandfather was Thomas Willing, the president of the First Bank of the United States. Together, they had nine children:[10]

Ashburton died on 12 May 1848 at Longleat, Wiltshire. His widow died several months later on 5 December 1848.[10]

Descendants[edit]

Through his eldest son, he was a grandfather of Hon. Mary Florence Baring (1860–1902), who married William Compton, 5th Marquess of Northampton.[13] Through his second son, he was a grandfather of Hon. Alexander Baring, 4th Baron Ashburton (1835–1889), and Hon. Maria Anne Louisa Baring (1833–1928), who married William FitzRoy, 6th Duke of Grafton.[14]

Styles of address[edit]

  • 1774–1806: Mr Alexander Baring
  • 1806–1834: Mr Alexander Baring MP
  • 1834–1835: The Right Honourable Alexander Baring MP
  • 1835–1848: The Right Honourable The Lord Ashburton PC

Quotes[edit]

Of this great mercantile family the Duc de Richelieu wittily remarked; "There are six main powers in Europe; Britain, France, Austria-Hungary, Russia, Prussia and Baring-Brothers!" (Vicary Gibbs, from the "Complete Peerage" 1910).

References[edit]

  1. ^ "leighrayment.com House of Commons: Bodmin to Bradford East". Archived from the original on 10 August 2009. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  2. ^ "leighrayment.com House of Commons: Clonmel to Cork County West". Archived from the original on 20 December 2009. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  3. ^ Debrett's (1916). Debrett's Peerage, Baronetage, Knightage, and Companionage. Kelly's Directories. p. 670. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  4. ^ Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Baring" . Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
  5. ^ Titcomb, James (23 February 2015). "Barings: the collapse that erased 232 years of history". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 27 March 2017.
  6. ^ a b c Chisholm 1911.
  7. ^ É. Halévy (1961) Victorian Years. London: Ernest Benn; p. 201.
  8. ^ "No. 19257". The London Gazette. 10 April 1835. p. 699.
  9. ^ Maine League of Historical Societies and Museums (1970). Doris A. Isaacson (ed.). Maine: A Guide 'Down East'. Rockland, Me: Courier-Gazette, Inc. pp. 381–382.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h "Ashburton, Baron (UK, 1835)". www.cracroftspeerage.co.uk. Heraldic Media Limited. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  11. ^ "Sandwich, Earl of (E, 1660)". www.cracroftspeerage.co.uk. Heraldic Media Limited. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  12. ^ "Bath, Marquess of (GB, 1789)". www.cracroftspeerage.co.uk. Heraldic Media Limited. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  13. ^ "Northampton, Marquess of (UK, 1812)". www.cracroftspeerage.co.uk. Heraldic Media Limited. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  14. ^ "Grafton, Duke of (E, 1675)". www.cracroftspeerage.co.uk. Heraldic Media Limited.

Attribution:

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
William Morland
John Hammet
Member of Parliament for Taunton
18061826
With: John Hammet 1806–1811
Henry Powell Collins 1812–1818, 1819–1820
Sir William Burroughs, Bt 1818–1819
John Ashley Warre 1820–1826
Succeeded by
Henry Seymour
William Peachey
Preceded by
Matthias Attwood
William Thompson
Member of Parliament for Callington
18261831
With: Matthias Attwood 1826–1830
Bingham Baring 1830–1831
Succeeded by
Henry Bingham Baring
Edward Charles Hugh Herbert
Preceded by
Lord James FitzRoy
Francis Baring
Member of Parliament for Thetford
18311832
With: Lord James FitzRoy
Succeeded by
Lord James FitzRoy
Francis Baring
New constituency Member of Parliament for North Essex
18321835
With: Sir John Tyrell, Bt
Succeeded by
Sir John Tyrell, Bt
John Payne Elwes
Political offices
Preceded by
Charles Poulett Thomson
President of the Board of Trade
1834–1835
Succeeded by
Charles Poulett Thomson
Preceded by
James Abercromby
Master of the Mint
1834–1835
Succeeded by
Henry Labouchere
Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
New Creation
Baron Ashburton
1835–1848
Succeeded by
Bingham Baring