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Ames, Jeremiah (1706–1776), banker and merchant, was born on 20 July 1706 at Evercreech, near Shepton Mallet, Somerset, one of eight children of Levi Ames (d. 1726), grocer, and his first wife, Hannah (d. 1711), daughter of John Watts of Doulting, Somerset...

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See Ames, Jeremiah

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Baillie, James Evan (1781?–1863), merchant, banker, and politician, was born in Bristol, probably in 1781, into a successful Scottish merchant-planter family that had settled in Bristol in the 1770s. He was baptized at St Augustine-the-Less, Bristol, on 26 June 1782, the third but second surviving son of ...

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Banks, Sir John, baronet (bap. 1627, d. 1699), merchant and financier, was baptized at the parish church of All Saints, Maidstone, Kent, on 19 August 1627. He was the eldest in the family of two sons and one daughter of Caleb Banks of ...

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Alexander Baring, first Baron Ashburton (1773–1848) by Sir Thomas Lawrence, c. 1810 ING Bank, NV, London Branch

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Baring, Alexander, first Baron Ashburton (1773–1848), merchant and banker, was born on 27 October 1773 (the frequently cited date of 1784 is incorrect) in Mincing Lane, London, the second child of the six sons and six daughters of Sir Francis Baring (1740–1810), merchant and banker, and his wife, ...

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Sir Francis Baring, first baronet (1740–1810) by Sir Thomas Lawrence, 1806–7 [left, with his brother John Baring (centre) and son-in-law Charles Wall (right)] private collection. Photograph: Photographic Survey, Courtauld Institute of Art, London

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Baring, Sir Francis, first baronet (1740–1810), merchant and merchant banker, was born at Larkbear, Exeter, on 18 April 1740, third of the four surviving sons and one daughter of John Baring (1697–1748) and his wife, Elizabeth Baring (1702–1766), daughter of John Vowler, a prosperous ...

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Joshua Bates (1788–1864) by unknown artist ING Bank, NV, London Branch

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Bates, Joshua (1788–1864), merchant and banker, was born on 10 October 1788 at Weymouth, Massachusetts, United States, the youngest of three children and only son of Colonel Joshua Bates (d. 1804), a leading local businessman, and his wife, Tirzah, née Pratt. He was educated at public schools and by the ...

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Batley, Lawrence (1911–2002), businessman, was born on 15 February 1911 at 37 Bland Street, Lockwood, Huddersfield, in the West Riding of Yorkshire, the elder son of John Arthur Batley, iron moulder, and his wife, Beatrice, née Fawley, weaver. Although he passed the entrance examination for ...

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Bethel, Slingsby (bap. 1617, d. 1697), merchant and political economist, was baptized in Alne, in the North Riding of Yorkshire, on 27 February 1617, a younger son of Sir Walter Bethel (d. 1622), gentleman, and Mary Slingsby (1582–1662), daughter of Sir Henry Slingsby...

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Slingsby Bethel (bap. 1617, d. 1697) by William Sherwin, 1680 © Copyright The British Museum

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Blunt, Sir John, first baronet (bap. 1665, d. 1733), financier and a founder of the South Sea Company, son of Thomas Blunt, a Baptist shoemaker of Rochester, Kent, and Isabella, daughter of Thomas Blacke, yeoman, was baptized at St Nicholas's Church, Rochester, on 24 July 1665. He became free of the ...

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Bolts, William [formerly Willem Bolst] (1739–1808), merchant and speculator, was born on 7 February 1739 on the continent, probably in Germany. However, as a child he lived in Britain, and he became an apprentice in a London merchant house. He was acting in a commercial capacity in ...

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Briscoe, John (d. 1697), merchant and projector, is described in many records as a merchant, although little is known of his trading activities. He was apprenticed to a member of the London Salters' Company, although his name does not appear in that company's serving registers. He may have been the ...

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Brooks, Robert (1790–1882), businessman and trader, was born in Laceby, Lincolnshire, and baptized there on 5 April 1791 at St Mary's Church, the second son of William Brooks, yeoman farmer at Laceby, and his wife, Ann Ostler. He was apprenticed to the wealthy ...

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Brown, Alexander (1764–1834), merchant and banker, was born on 17 November 1764 in Ballymena, co. Antrim, the son of William Brown (b. 1715) and Margaret Davison. There may have been as many as thirteen children in the family, but only four—three sons, of whom ...

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Carr, Ralph (1711–1806), merchant and banker, was born on 22 September 1711, the eldest son of John Carr (1667–1739), of Whickham and Newcastle upon Tyne, and his wife, Sarah (1679–1733), daughter of William Wynne of Newcastle. Carr was apprenticed to a Newcastle merchant at the age of seventeen, serving out the last year of his time with one of his master's correspondents in ...

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Thomas Sivewright Catto, first Baron Catto (1879–1959) by Walter Stoneman, 1943 © National Portrait Gallery, London