Alexander Campbell & Maria Louise Sabate

Mansion House, Wellpark, Greenock, Scotland
Mansion House, Wellpark, Greenock, Scotland, home to Alexander Campbell's Crawford relatives

Alexander Campbell & Maria Louise Sabate were my 3rd great-grandparents. Alexan­der was likely from the Greenock area of Scot­land. His mother was Agnes McKin­lay who lived at Glas­gow at the time of Alexan­der’s death on 20 March 1826. He died at sea on the ship Glas­gow while re­turn­ing home to his family in Ja­maica, to which he had im­mi­grated sev­eral years ear­lier. Though not of­fi­cially doc­u­mented, I be­lieve Alexan­der was closely re­lated to May/Mar­jory who may have mar­ried Thomas Craw­ford (his 2nd marriage). May and Thomas lived at Col­lan­der and Greenock in Scot­land and had four chil­dren: Mary, Ag­new, Ara­bella and May—these names are men­tioned in Alexan­der’s will.

Alexan­der was, among other things, the owner of Robin’s Hall and The Farm, a coffee estate, both in Man­ches­ter, Ja­maica, and Turns­bull Pen in St Cather­ine, Ja­maica, which he left in trust to Marie Louise Sabate (later Dar­ling) as guardian of their son Alexander Campbell, jr. Alexander, sr. also left legacies to their other surviving children, including their infant son Donald Binnie Campbell, my 2nd great-grandfather. Alexander never met this son since baby Donald was born during Alexander’s last trip overseas.

(Donna Campbell-Kenny’s book, A Journey Through Time in Jamaica has the detail of Alexander’s will and more information on his Jamaican family.)

Though most of his es­tate was left to Marie Louise Sabate and his chil­dren in Ja­maica, Alexan­der also left lega­cies to Misses Ara­bella and Mar­ion Craw­ford, both of whom lived in Scot­land. Their brother Ag­new Craw­ford was named as one of the ex­ecu­tors of Alexan­der’s will. Alexan­der’s will gave no in­di­ca­tion as to the na­ture of his re­la­tion­ship with the Craw­fords, but they prob­a­bly were close rel­a­tives for their mother’s maiden name was Camp­bell and, from a Cana­dian source, I heard spec­u­la­tion—based on an 1814 let­ter from a George Camp­bell to Ag­new Craw­ford—that George Camp­bell was Ag­new’s cousin.

The Jamaican newspaper, the Kingston Chronicle, (Vol. XXII) reported the news of Alexander, sr.'s death as follows:

Onboard the ship Glascow, on the 20th of March, Alexander Campbell, Esq. an old and respectable inhabitant of this island, whose loss is much regretted by all who had the pleasure of his acquaintance.

And that’s about all I know of my Scot­tish con­nec­tion, at least as far as tra­di­tional ge­neal­ogy goes. I have, though, had my DNA tested and used to con­nect to deeper roots in that coun­try. The re­sults are in­trigu­ing, but more about that at an­other time.

Marie Louise Sabate was born abt. 1784 in St. Do­minique (Haiti) and, ap­par­ently, im­mi­grated to Ja­maica as a refugee.

Note that in 1804, after more than a decade of warfare, French forces evacuated their troops and residents from St. Do­minique, which reclaimed its original Taino name of Haiti (Ayti, meaning mountainous land) and declared independence. Jean-Jacques Dessalines had led the Haitian Revolution and became the first ruler of an independent Haiti. Dessalines ordered the slaughter of the remaining French residents in Haiti after promising them protection. Blacks and mulattoes, most of them former slaves, exacted revenge on the whites and as many as 4,000 were killed. They were urged on by Dessalines, who famously cried, “Koupe tèt, brule kay,” meaning, “Cut their heads, burn their houses.”

By all in­di­ca­tions, Marie Louise was an ed­u­cated and cul­tured woman who spoke both French and Eng­lish. She was, ap­par­ently, Alexan­der’s “house­keeper” as com­mon-law wives in Ja­maica were of­ten called in those days. Marie Louise bore Alexan­der Camp­bell five chil­dren: Agnes (1818-1818), Alexan­der (1819-?), John (1822-1826), Jane (1824-) and Don­ald Binnie (1825-1855). They were all given the sur­name, Camp­bell. What exactly happened to Donald’s siblings, we do not know.

Marie had chil­dren by three other men with­out ben­e­fit of mar­riage. In all, she bore 11 chil­dren. On 8 Sep. 1836, Marie mar­ried Robert Dar­ling, a mag­is­trate in St Cather­ine, Ja­maica and the pro­pri­etor of sev­eral prop­er­ties. Darling had several other business interests, including banking and providing meat to the navy. At the time of Robert’s death in 1854, he lived at Mal­ton Plan­ta­tion, Man­ches­ter, Ja­maica. In the 1840 Jamaica Almanac, Malton is listed as a 250-acre property.

Ac­cord­ing to the Ja­maica Al­manac (1833), Marie Louise Sabate was listed as pro­pri­etor of Turn­bull es­tate in St Cather­ine, with 35 en­slaved per­sons and 101 stock. She was also listed as a ben­e­fi­ciary of com­pen­sa­tion for en­slaved per­sons on Robin’s Hall es­tate, Man­ches­ter, Ja­maica, and Turns­bull Pen, St Cather­ine, Ja­maica, as guardian of her son Alexan­der Camp­bell, jr when slav­ery ended. (About 4,000 British slave own­ers were com­pen­sated by the British gov­ern­ment in 1833 for the eman­ci­pa­tion of their slaves.) Alexander also owned The Farm, which was put up for sale in 1829 by his estate. Below is a copy of the listing that was published back then:

1829 Jamaica Gazette Sale of The Farm: “Kingston, April 4, 1829. For Sale, that very desirable COFFEE PLANTATION, situate in the Parish of Manchester, called THE FARM and belonging to the Estate of the late ALEX CAMPBELL, Esq dcd, containing by estimation, 280 acres, the greatest part of which is in well established Coffee, anf the remainder in very productive Provision Grounds, common Pasture and Ruinate. The Works on the property consist of extensive Barbiques, with the requisite Stores and Out Offices, all in a state of perfect repair, and fully adeqate to the purposes of the Plantation. Attached to the property are seventy well disposed and healthy Negroes. For further particulars and terms apply to George Lindsay esq, Marshalls Pen, Manchester or to the subscriber, in Kingston, David Malloch.”

Ferry Inn, Spanish Town Road | Daguerreotype by A. Duperly
Believed to be the Ferry Inn mentioned in Maria Louise (Sabate) Darling’s will. 

Marie Louise died in 1851 as a woman of sub­stan­tial prop­erty, leav­ing in her will diamond and other jew­ellery, chaise and car­riage, live­stock, fur­ni­ture, library, and other house­hold items. Maria Louise also owned or had an in­ter­est in a tav­ern called the Ferry Inn, which is men­tioned in her will. (I have a copy of her will, but it is dif­fi­cult to read due to age, ink “bleed­ing”, etc.)

I descend from Donald Binnie Campbell (b. 1825 d. 1855), the youngest of Alexander Campbell and Maria Louisa Sabate’s children. Donald was born in Jamaica.

The First Three Generations of My Campbell Family

1-Alexander Campbell b. Abt 1766, Scotland, UK, d. 20 Mar 1826, On the ship, 
  Glasgow, while returning to Jamaica
 + Maria Louisa Sabate b. Abt 1784, St. Dominique (Haiti), c. 7 Jul 1805, Roman 
  Catholic Church, Kingston Jamaica, WI, d. 14 Feb 1851, Kingston, Jamaica, 
  Bur. Feb 1851, Roman Catholic Cemetary, Kingston, Jamaica
...2-Agnes Campbell b. 21 Nov 1818, Kingston, Jamaica, WI, c. 7 Dec 1818, 
     Kingston, Jamaica, WI, d. 16 Dec 1818, Kingston, Jamaica, WI, Bur. Dec 1818, 
     New West Ground Cemetery
...2-Alexander Campbell b. 22 Dec 1819, Kingston, Jamaica, WI, c. 27 Jan 1820, 
     Kingston, Jamaica, WI
...2-John Campbell b. 31 Dec 1822, Kingston, Jamaica, WI, c. 15 Mar 1823, 
     Kingston Jamaica, WI
...2-Jane Campbell b. 14 Feb 1824, Kingston, Jamaica, WI
...2-Donald Binnie Campbell b. 14 Nov 1825, Water Lane, Kingston, Jamaica, WI, 
     c. 31 May 1826, Kingston Jamaica, WI, d. 6 Jul 1855, Kingston, Jamaica, WI
    + Elizabeth Matilda Kellerman b. 11 Feb 1826, M K Penn, Kingston, Jamaica, 
......3-Alexander James Campbell b. 16 Nov 1848, Charlotte St., Kingston, 
        Jamaica, WI, c. 17 Jan 1849, Kingston, Jamaica, WI, d. 14 Jan 1917, Kingston, 
        Jamaica, WI
       + Ida Julia Brandon b. 14 Jul 1860, d. 23 Jan 1942, Crossroads, Saint 
        Andrew, Jamaica, WI
......3-Donald Spence Campbell b. 16 Dec 1850, Kingston, Jamaica, BWI, c. 25 
        Jun 1851, Kingston Jamaica, WI, d. 8 Aug 1888, at 3 Fleet Street, Kingston, 
        Jamaica, BWI