18th century portrait of James Dawes Stainbank c. 1797
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A primitive 18th century oil on panel portrait of James Dawes Stainbank age 21 c.1797 in military uniform, probably during his service overseas. Stairbank's military history has stayed frustratingly elusive in our research. Stainbank was born on October 13th 1776 to Robert Stainbank and Anna Elizabeth Reeve from Boston, Lincolnshire. Robert Stainbank was born in Islington, London - he was a Prothonotary of Cliffords Inn and His Majesty's Palace Court, Westminster. James Dawes Stainbank married Anna Burrell. At some point Stainbank is in the East Indies with his son, James Burrell Stainbank, is shown as being born in the East Indies in 1813. Perhaps he was bringing seeds or tea back from the East Indies as we know he later had a large seed warehouse in Lincolnshire.
We know he is in Boston in 1807 as he is advertising in the Rutland and Stamford Mercury: "Pleasure Boat to be sold - a handsome london built skiff 19 feet long and 4 feet wide, nearly new and complete with rudder, one pair of sculls, one pair od oars and a boat hook. Inquire J.D Stainbank, Boston"
In 1815 he has a large warehouse in Packhouse Quay, Boston for the imporation of goods from overseas and the adjoining warehouse is put up to let.
In 1818 James Dawes Stainbank is a member of the Boston Association of the Prosecution of Felons and was required to pay his subscriptions in November as a member. His business is obviously flourishing as he advertises in the Stamford Mercury on 13th November 1818: "two apprentices wanted immediately in the corn, seed and grocery business - a premium will be expected. Letters addressed (post paid) to J D Stainbank, Market Place, Boston"
By 1824 we find James Dawes Stainbank selling, by auction, the old established seed warehouse and grocer's shop in the market place in Boston. The shop is described as 'having been built in a very superior way in the last four years, 88 feet by 22, a very good back parlour, handsome entrance and staircase, drawing room and seven capital bedrooms, a good kitchen and cellars, garden and a new and substaintially built warehouse for seeds, with three floors fit for seeds, wool, drapery, goods.' The business, although not necesarilly under James Dawes Stainbank hismelf, is described as having operated there for twenty years.
Why he is selling is lost to time but in 1833 we find a James Dawes Stainbank in Honiton, Devon operating as a tea dealer and grocer but being declared bankrupt in 1835. This appears to be our man as in 1831 James Dawes Stainbank and Ann Stainbank have a child, Alfred Reeve Stainbank in Honiton in May 1831. Reeve being Dawes' mother's maiden name, this was often taken as a child's middle name.
By 1839 James Dawes Stainbank is operating as an accountant in Boston, Lincolnshire.
James Dawes Stainbank died in Skirkbeck, Lincolnshire on 26th April 1862.
The panel is inscribed verso "James Dawes Stainbank age 21 c 1797 maternal grandfather of K. L Collenette, Gothic Lodge, Woodford Green , Essex"