Epps family

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For others with the surname Epps, see Epps.

The Epps family was an English family, well known in commerce and medicine.


In the second half of the 18th century they had been settled near Ashford, Kent, for some generations, claiming descent from an equerry of Charles II, but were reduced in circumstances.

John Epps the elder[edit]

John Epps rose to prosperity as a provision merchant, and restored the family fortunes. He was a butcher, with a chain of shops in London.[1]

He had four sons, of whom John (1805–1869),[2] George Napoleon (1815–1874),[3] and James (1821–1907) were notable men of their day, the two former as prominent doctors who were ardent converts to homoeopathy, and James as a homoeopathic chemist and the founder of the great cocoa business associated with his name. Among Dr. G. N. Epps's children were Dr. Washington Epps, a well-known homoeopathist, Laura Theresa, Lady Alma-Tadema, and Mrs. Edmund Gosse.

Epps's cocoa[edit]

During the nineteenth century, Epps's cocoa was shipped all over the world. On 23 June 1887, the British ship Dunskeig, of Glasgow, was shipwrecked off Cape Horn. On 16 August, the survivors of the Dunskeig's crew were joined by survivors from the abandoned British ship Colorado. The survivors from the two crews, twenty-five men in all, were stranded on the Isla de los Estados until the 20 August with nothing to eat except a large quantity of Epps's cocoa, which had washed ashore.[4]


  1. ^ Adrian Desmond (15 April 1992). The Politics of Evolution: Morphology, Medicine, and Reform in Radical London. University of Chicago Press. p. 156. ISBN 978-0-226-14374-3. Retrieved 10 April 2012. 
  2. ^  Stephen, Leslie, ed. (1889). "Epps, John". Dictionary of National Biography. 17. London: Smith, Elder & Co. pp. 382–3. 
  3. ^  Stephen, Leslie, ed. (1889). "Epps, George Napoleon". Dictionary of National Biography. 17. London: Smith, Elder & Co. p. 381. 
  4. ^ "British ship Dunskeig". Bruce Herald. XIX (1930): 3. 7 February 1888. Archived from the original on 2010-11-13. 

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