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Lord Claud Hamilton (1843–1925)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Lord Claud Hamilton (1843–1925) circa 1916.jpg
"Bridegroom". Caricature by Spy published in Vanity Fair in 1878.
"Bridegroom". Caricature by Spy published in Vanity Fair in 1878.

Lord Claud John Hamilton PC (20 February 1843 – 26 January 1925) was a British Member of Parliament (MP) during the Victorian era, and a noted railway director.

Family and education

Born the second son of James Hamilton, 2nd Marquess of Abercorn (later the 1st Duke of Abercorn) and his wife Lady Louisa Jane Russell, Hamilton was educated at Harrow School.[1]

He married Carolina Chandos-Pole (19 July 1857 – 21 September 1911) (a granddaughter of the 5th Earl of Harrington) on 20 July 1878 and they had two children:

  • Gilbert Claud Hamilton (1879–1943), who gained the rank of Colonel in service of the Grenadier Guards, fought in the Second Boer War and was decorated several times. He married twice, firstly in 1911 Enid Awa Elgar (died 1916), daughter of Charles Elgar from Fernside, Featherston, New Zealand, and secondly in 1916 Mary Blair (died 1961), daughter of Joseph Allan Blair from New York City, USA He had no issue.
  • Ida Hamilton (1883–1970), who in 1909 married Hugh Dunombe Flower (died 1950). They divorced in 1923 and had one son.

Military and political careers

Hamilton served in the British Army, firstly in the Grenadier Guards, and later in the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers,[2] before turning to political life.

In 1865, he became Conservative MP for Londonderry City until 1868 when he was appointed a Lord of the Treasury in Benjamin Disraeli's first ministry. In 1869, he became MP for King's Lynn until 1880,[3] for Liverpool from 1880 to 1885, for Liverpool West Derby from 1885 until he resigned his seat in 1888,[4] and for Kensington South from January 1910 to 1918.[4]

Lord Claud had been an aide-de-camp to Queen Victoria from 1887 to 1897 and was appointed to the Privy Council in 1917.

Great Eastern Railway

However his principal contribution to British public life was as a director of the Great Eastern Railway (GER) from 1872, becoming vice-chairman in 1874, and chairman in 1893, continuing as chairman until 1922. The GER operated from London's Liverpool Street station to major eastern towns and cities including Cambridge, Norwich, Ipswich, Chelmsford, and Colchester. Hamilton travelled the network extensively. "He devoted the main energies of his life to the company, constantly travelling over the system, observing its conduct and operation".[2] The shares of the company (which had been bankrupt in 1866) rose from 76, shortly after he became a director, to par in 1896, and the dividend to 6% in 1901.

In 1900, the Great Eastern Railway named the first of its new class of 4-4-0 express passenger locomotives (designed by James Holden and designated GER Classes S46, D56 and H88 ) after its chairman, and the whole class came to be known as the "Claud Hamilton" type. [5]


Hamilton died on 26 January 1925, and was buried in Richmond Cemetery.[6] He was 81 years of age.


A memorial was erected by Ida Flower in 1925 to the memory of her father. It can be found on the south wall of St John's-Hyde Park Church, London, W2.



  1. ^ Harrow School (1911). The Harrow School Register, 1800-1911. Longmans, Green, and Co. p. 288.
  2. ^ a b Simmons, Jack and Biddle, Gordon (eds.) (1997). The Oxford Companion to British Railway History. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press. p. 200.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  3. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1977]. British parliamentary election results 1832–1885 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. pp. 168, 192. ISBN 0-900178-26-4.
  4. ^ a b Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1974]. British parliamentary election results 1885–1918 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. pp. 28, 145. ISBN 0-900178-27-2.
  5. ^ Allan, Cecil J. (1968). The Great Eastern Railway (Third ed.). London: Ian Allan. p. 127.
  6. ^ Meller, Hugh; Parsons, Brian (2011). London Cemeteries: An Illustrated Guide and Gazetteer (fifth ed.). Stroud, Gloucestershire: The History Press. pp. 290–294. ISBN 9780752461830.

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
William McCormick
Member of Parliament for Londonderry City
Succeeded by
Richard Dowse
Preceded by
Lord Stanley
Hon. Robert Bourke
Member of Parliament for King's Lynn
With: Hon. Robert Bourke
Succeeded by
Sir William ffolkes, 3rd Baronet
Hon. Robert Bourke
Preceded by
Viscount Sandon
Edward Whitley
Lord Ramsay
Member of Parliament for Liverpool
With: Viscount Sandon 1880–1882
Edward Whitley 1880–1885
Samuel Smith 1882–1885
Constituency abolished
New constituency Member of Parliament for Liverpool West Derby
Succeeded by
Hon. William Cross
Preceded by
Earl Percy
Member of Parliament for Kensington South
Jan 19101918
Succeeded by
William Davison
Party political offices
Preceded by
Lord Randolph Churchill and Sir Michael Hicks Beach, Bt
Chairman of the National Union of Conservative and Constitutional Associations
Succeeded by
Ellis Ashmead-Bartlett
This page was last edited on 6 November 2019, at 02:18
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