James family, of Penralley

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James family, of Penralley

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James Jones (d. 1774) left the Penralley property in Rhayader, Radnorshire, to his nephew, John James (1737-1790), a lieutenant in the Royal Navy. In 1780, John James married Jane Probert (1757-1844), daughter of Evan Probert of Kempsey, Worcestershire, and had eight children. John Jones James (1781-1837) was the eldest child. He was a mate in the East India service in 1812, and later a trader in India in his own right. He married had a daughter, Catherine Jane James (1828-1908, dsp), who was born at sea off Ceylon. He also had an illegitimate daughter, Cornelia Ludovica Immens of Antwerp. He died at sea and was buried at St Helena.

Horatio James (1789-1850), John James's only other son to survive to adulthood, served in the Royal Navy, rising to the rank of commander. In 1833 he married Sarah Margaretta Symonds (1802-1889), and had two daughters. In 1857 Harriet Frances (1836-1868), the elder daughter, became the first wife of the Rev. Thomas Howel Evans (1832-1915), the son of Rev. Jonah Bowen Evans ('Cattwg', 1806-1876). In 1862 Maria (1843-1914), the younger daughter, married Stephen William Williams (1837-1899, dsp), the county surveyor for Radnorshire, 1862-1899.

Horatio James Evans (1859-1932), the eldest son of the Rev. Thomas Howel Evans, served in the British Army in the Afghan, South African and First World Wars, ending his career as Brigadier-General, 38th Welsh Division. Walter Bowen Evans (1862-1923), brother of Horatio, was a noted explorer, mining engineer and chemist, and member of the Governing Body of the Church in Wales. Francis Howel Evans (1867-1931), another brother, wrote crime stories as Frank Howel Evans and he may have been the inspiration behind Agatha Christie's 'Poirot'.

The family appear to have failed with Horatio's son, Horatio Peter Bowen Evans (1916-1988).


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