(Abt 1732-)
REID, Margaret


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MELVILL, Thomas 1

  • Born: Oct 10, 1758, North Leith, Scotland, UK 1
  • Christened: Oct 19, 1758
  • Marriage: MELVIN, Janet on Nov 21, 1780 in St George in the East 1
  • Died: Mar 15, 1814, Cape Town, South Africa aged 55 1 2

bullet  Events:

1. Historical. 1 Copy of the Inscription on Silver Cup presented to Thomas MELVILL:The Gift of His Excellency, Arthur Phillips, Esq.,Captain-General and Governor-in-Chief of His Majesty's Territory of New South Wales and its Dependencies, to Thomas Melvill Commander of the Brittania,for Killing a Spermaceti Whale on the 26th October 1791.Being the first of its kind taken on that coast, since the Colony was established This cup is (was?) in the possession of Mrs Edward H.V.Melvill of Johannesburg

2. Historical, 1790. 2 He was a Scot, a master mariner, and in the course of his travels he passed the Cape of Good Hope several times bound for the South American whaling grounds. He rounded the Cape in 1790 and 55 days later he reached Port Jackson, Australia. In 1799 he was permitted to proceed and settle in the Cape, and he left England in February 1800 with his wife Janet (nee Leith) and their children Janet and John, and they arrive in Simon's Bay in May (1800) He then bought a schooner and they embarked for Saldanha Bay where he had bought a major share in the farm Geytenbergsfontein, but soon sold it.

3. Occupation, 1807. 2 After the second British Occupation he opened the ships-chandler store "Melvill and Johnson" in Strand street Cape Town, and in 1808 they bought the premises and conducted business until 1813. The partnership dissolved and a year later he died aged 56.

4. Alt Birth. A later advice gave a birth date of 10 Oct 1758 in North Leith, Scotland, and as this is so close to the previous adviced date of Nov. 1757, I prefer the more detailed date. R.B.Anderson


Thomas married Janet MELVIN, daughter of David MELVIN and Jean BALENTINE, on Nov 21, 1780 in St George in the East.1 (Janet MELVIN was born in 1755 in South Leith, Midlothian, Scotland 1 and died in 1814 1.)



1 J.M.Marquard, MELVILL Family Register (Printed by The Citadel Press, Loop Street, Cape Town).

2 Herbert H. HELM and Charles W. HELM, THE HELM FAMILY HISTORY (jANUARY 1999, 91 pages, limited distribution.).

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