Repro ID: PW3562
Title: Captain John Woolmore, F.R.S. Deputy Master of the Trinity House.
Description: John Woolmore (1755-1837) went to sea at the age of twelve, probably as a Master's servant on the East India Company ship, the 'Granby'. This was the start of a long career with the Company that involved several trading voyages from London to the Far East. After one such voyage, he was appointed captain of a country ship, one of the fleet of privately-owned ships that traded around the seas off India and the Far East. John eventually returned from India as a passenger on the 'Contractor', arriving in England in June 1787. He became a sworn officer on 18 September 1787 and at the same time was appointed Captain of the 'Earl Talbot' for the season 1787-8. The following year, Woolmore joined the Society of East India Company Commanders, which was based at the Jerusalem Coffee House in London. He retired from the sea soon after. Between 1794 and 1808 he is known to have been the owner or part owner of several East Indiaman, including the 'Huddart' which was built at Blackwall in 1803 by Messrs. Green and Wigram. On 6 June 1803 Woolmore was elected an Elder Brethren of Trinity House. He became the Deputy Master on 7 February 1825, a post he held until 1834. Along with Robert Wigram, Woolmore was one of the leading figures behind the East India Dock Company. On 6 May 1803 Woolmore was elected as Deputy Chairman of the Committee for Constructing the East India Docks and when the company was floated in 1822 he was appointed Deputy Chairman. He remained Deputy Chairman until 1824 and served in the same role between 1827 and 1832. In December 1806 he purchased the parliamentary seat of Westbury from the trustees of the Earl of Abingdon. He is recorded as an East India Company member and served in Portland's ministry before the general election of 1807, when his parliamentary career was curtailed. He stood for the seat of St Ives but was defeated, after which he retired from politics. Woolmore remained a member of Trinity House after he resigned as Deputy Master in May 1834 at the age of 79. As a tribute to his status in Trinity House, his coat of arms was put into the south-east window of the chapel at the Trinity Hospital in Mile End. Woolmore was made Knight Bachelor on 27 March 1834 at Windsor Castle and also a Knight Commander of the Royal Hanoverian Guelphic Order later in 1834. He died at his home at 15 Bruton Street, off Piccadilly, on 2 December 1837.
Creator: Henry Edridge, (artist): James Harding, Duffield (engraver): Hullmandel, C (publisher)
Date: c. 1830
Credit line: National Maritime Museum, London