SLAUGHTER, JOHN HENRY

1818 - ?1885 from England


clerk, was born in Walmer, Kent in 1818, the son of Captain William Slaughter, CB, KCH. He sought a post in the colonial service and was appointed clerk to Governor MOODY at Port Louis, arriving in the brigantine Columbian Packet on 23 November 1843. Slaughter was not a success: Moody wrote to the Secretary of State in November 1844 asking that he be replaced as he was of a 'constitutionally morbid ... or nervously anxious state of mind'. Slaughter had cause to be nervous: the officers of the survey ship Philomel had been accustomed to use his Stanley house on Philomel Street as a base on shore, (in his words) 'spitting on his carpet in his sitting room, smashing his furniture and even ... pushing him from his chair on the floor'. On 28 March 1845 he found five officers awaiting his return from church smoking cigars in a scene of wreckage. They produced a sack and threatened to take Slaughter back on board; after a scuffle, he slipped from the house and ran down Ross Road to Stanley Cottage (Dr HAMBLIN's house) with the officers in hot pursuit. Here Hamblin's mother-in-law, Mrs Louisa Longden, admitted the unfortunate Slaughter and sent his pursuers packing. The governor took a dim view of this incident and reported it to the Admiralty, who however were less concerned.

The following year Slaughter complained that his salary of £100 would not cover his expenses which amounted to £146, and later informed Moody that ' circumstances of a private nature, including the state of my health' obliged him to return to England. He left for home in September 1846, having thanked Moody for 'all the great acts of considerate kindness'. For several succeeding years he wrote to the Colonial Office seeking employment but received discouraging replies. In the 1881 census he was living in Devon.

Authors

David Tatham