St John Brodrick, 1st Earl of Midleton
Overview
 
William St John Fremantle Brodrick, 1st Earl of Midleton, KP
Order of St. Patrick
The Most Illustrious Order of Saint Patrick is a British order of chivalry associated with Ireland. The Order was created in 1783 by George III. The regular creation of knights of Saint Patrick lasted until 1921, when most of Ireland became independent as the Irish Free State...

, PC (14 December 1856 – 13 February 1942), known as St John Brodrick until 1907 and as The Viscount Midleton between 1907 and 1920, was a British Conservative Party
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

 politician.
He came of a Surrey
Surrey
Surrey is a county in the South East of England and is one of the Home Counties. The county borders Greater London, Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire and Berkshire. The historic county town is Guildford. Surrey County Council sits at Kingston upon Thames, although this has been part of...

 family who in the 17th century, in the persons of Sir St John Brodrick and Sir Thomas Brodrick, obtained grants of land in the south of Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

.
Encyclopedia
William St John Fremantle Brodrick, 1st Earl of Midleton, KP
Order of St. Patrick
The Most Illustrious Order of Saint Patrick is a British order of chivalry associated with Ireland. The Order was created in 1783 by George III. The regular creation of knights of Saint Patrick lasted until 1921, when most of Ireland became independent as the Irish Free State...

, PC (14 December 1856 – 13 February 1942), known as St John Brodrick until 1907 and as The Viscount Midleton between 1907 and 1920, was a British Conservative Party
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

 politician.

Background and education

He came of a Surrey
Surrey
Surrey is a county in the South East of England and is one of the Home Counties. The county borders Greater London, Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire and Berkshire. The historic county town is Guildford. Surrey County Council sits at Kingston upon Thames, although this has been part of...

 family who in the 17th century, in the persons of Sir St John Brodrick and Sir Thomas Brodrick, obtained grants of land in the south of Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

. Sir St John Brodrick settled at Midleton
Midleton
Midleton, historically Middleton , is a town in south-eastern County Cork, Ireland. It lies some 22 km east of Cork City on the Owenacurra River and the N25 road, which connects Cork to the port of Rosslare...

, between Cork
Cork (city)
Cork is the second largest city in the Republic of Ireland and the island of Ireland's third most populous city. It is the principal city and administrative centre of County Cork and the largest city in the province of Munster. Cork has a population of 119,418, while the addition of the suburban...

 and Youghal
Youghal
Youghal is a town in County Cork, Ireland. Sitting on the estuary of the River Blackwater, in the past it was militarily and economically important. Being built on the edge of a steep riverbank, the town has a distinctive long and narrow layout...

 in 1641; and his son Alan Brodrick
Alan Brodrick, 1st Viscount Midleton
Alan Brodrick, 1st Viscount Midleton PC was an Irish lawyer and politician.-Background:He was the second son of Sir St John Brodrick of Ballyannan, near Midleton in County Cork, by his wife Alice , daughter of Laurence Clayton of Mallow, County Cork and sister of Colonel Randall Clayton M.P., of...

 (1660–1728), Speaker of the Irish House of Commons
Irish House of Commons
The Irish House of Commons was the lower house of the Parliament of Ireland, that existed from 1297 until 1800. The upper house was the House of Lords...

 and Lord Chancellor of Ireland
Lord Chancellor of Ireland
The office of Lord Chancellor of Ireland was the highest judicial office in Ireland until the establishment of the Irish Free State in 1922. From 1721 to 1801 it was also the highest political office of the Irish Parliament.-13th century:...

, was created Baron Brodrick in 1715 and Viscount Midleton in 1717 in the Irish peerage.

In 1796 the title of Baron Brodrick in the Peerage of Great Britain
Peerage of Great Britain
The Peerage of Great Britain comprises all extant peerages created in the Kingdom of Great Britain after the Act of Union 1707 but before the Act of Union 1800...

 was created. The English family seat at Peper Harrow, near Godalming
Godalming
Godalming is a town and civil parish in the Waverley district of the county of Surrey, England, south of Guildford. It is built on the banks of the River Wey and is a prosperous part of the London commuter belt. Godalming shares a three-way twinning arrangement with the towns of Joigny in France...

, Surrey, was designed by Sir William Chambers
William Chambers (architect)
Sir William Chambers was a Scottish architect, born in Gothenburg, Sweden, where his father was a merchant. Between 1740 and 1749 he was employed by the Swedish East India Company making several voyages to China where he studied Chinese architecture and decoration.Returning to Europe, he studied...

. William Brodrick, 8th Viscount Midleton
William Brodrick, 8th Viscount Midleton
William Brodrick, 8th Viscount Midleton , was a British peer and Conservative politician.-Background:Midleton was the son of Reverend William John Brodrick, 7th Viscount Midleton, Dean of Exeter and Chaplain to Queen Victoria, son of the Right Reverend the Hon. Charles Brodrick, Archbishop of Cashel...

 was a conservative
Conservatism
Conservatism is a political and social philosophy that promotes the maintenance of traditional institutions and supports, at the most, minimal and gradual change in society. Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others oppose modernism...

 in politics, who for a few years had a seat in the House of Commons
British House of Commons
The House of Commons is the lower house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which also comprises the Sovereign and the House of Lords . Both Commons and Lords meet in the Palace of Westminster. The Commons is a democratically elected body, consisting of 650 members , who are known as Members...

, and who was responsible in the House of Lords
House of Lords
The House of Lords is the upper house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Like the House of Commons, it meets in the Palace of Westminster....

 for carrying the Infants Protection Act. He was educated at Eton
Eton College
Eton College, often referred to simply as Eton, is a British independent school for boys aged 13 to 18. It was founded in 1440 by King Henry VI as "The King's College of Our Lady of Eton besides Wyndsor"....

 and Balliol College, Oxford
Balliol College, Oxford
Balliol College , founded in 1263, is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in England but founded by a family with strong Scottish connections....

, where he served as president of the Oxford Union
Oxford Union
The Oxford Union Society, commonly referred to simply as the Oxford Union, is a debating society in the city of Oxford, Britain, whose membership is drawn primarily but not exclusively from the University of Oxford...

.

Political career

Brodrick entered Parliament
Parliament of the United Kingdom
The Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is the supreme legislative body in the United Kingdom, British Crown dependencies and British overseas territories, located in London...

 as Conservative member for West Surrey
West Surrey (UK Parliament constituency)
West Surrey was a parliamentary constituency in the county of Surrey, which returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, elected by the bloc vote system.It was created under the Great Reform Act for the 1832 general election, and abolished...

 in 1880. In 1883 he was appointed to a Royal Commission
Royal Commission
In Commonwealth realms and other monarchies a Royal Commission is a major ad-hoc formal public inquiry into a defined issue. They have been held in various countries such as the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Saudi Arabia...

 examining the condition of Irish prisons. From 1886 to 1892 he was Financial Secretary to the War Office
Financial Secretary to the War Office
Financial Secretary to the War Office was an office of the British government, the financial secretary of the War Office department.The post was combined with that of Under-Secretary of State for War from 17 April 1947....

; Under-Secretary of State for War
Under-Secretary of State for War
The position of Under-Secretary of State for War was a British government position, first applied to Evan Nepean . In 1801 the offices for War and the Colonies were merged and the post became that of Under-Secretary of State for War and the Colonies...

, 1895–1898; Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, 1898–1900; Secretary of State for War
Secretary of State for War
The position of Secretary of State for War, commonly called War Secretary, was a British cabinet-level position, first held by Henry Dundas . In 1801 the post became that of Secretary of State for War and the Colonies. The position was re-instated in 1854...

, 1900–1903; and Secretary of State for India
Secretary of State for India
The Secretary of State for India, or India Secretary, was the British Cabinet minister responsible for the government of India and the political head of the India Office...

, 1903–1905. In 1885, he moved to the Guildford
Guildford (UK Parliament constituency)
Guildford is a county constituency in Surrey which returns one Member of Parliament to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, elected by the first-past-the-post voting system....

 seat, but lost it at the general election of January 1906
United Kingdom general election, 1906
-Seats summary:-See also:*MPs elected in the United Kingdom general election, 1906*The Parliamentary Franchise in the United Kingdom 1885-1918-External links:***-References:*F. W. S. Craig, British Electoral Facts: 1832-1987**...

. In March 1907 he was made an alderman
Alderman
An alderman is a member of a municipal assembly or council in many jurisdictions founded upon English law. The term may be titular, denoting a high-ranking member of a borough or county council, a council member chosen by the elected members themselves rather than by popular vote, or a council...

 of the London County Council
London County Council
London County Council was the principal local government body for the County of London, throughout its 1889–1965 existence, and the first London-wide general municipal authority to be directly elected. It covered the area today known as Inner London and was replaced by the Greater London Council...

.

From c. 1910 he was regarded as the nominal leader of the Irish Unionist Alliance (the umbrella body for Southern Irish Unionists, corresponding to the Ulster Unionists' Ulster Unionist Council). He was a remote and condescending leader who relied on a few intimates and was suspected of being more interested in a future career in British conservative politics than in his Irish followers. In 1916 Midleton's lobbying helped to defeat an attempt to implement immediate Home Rule with Ulster exclusion; this was supported by the Ulster leader Edward Carson and the Home Ruler John Redmond, but Midleton believed it would be disastrous for the Southern Unionist minority.

In 1918, during the Irish Convention
Irish Convention
The Irish Convention was an assembly which sat in Dublin, Ireland from July 1917 until March 1918 to address the Irish Question and other constitutional problems relating to an early enactment of self-government for Ireland, to debate its wider future, discuss and come to an understanding on...

, Midleton tried to reach a compromise with Redmond which would allow Home Rule without partition subject to certain financial restrictions. This was rejected both by Redmond's followers (who saw it as too restrictive) and the hardline IUA rank-and-file, who deposed Midleton. He and his followers then formed the Irish Unionist Anti-Partition League, an elite body mainly concerned with lobbying. It had some influence on the 1920 Government of Ireland Act
Government of Ireland Act 1920
The Government of Ireland Act 1920 was the Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which partitioned Ireland. The Act's long title was "An Act to provide for the better government of Ireland"; it is also known as the Fourth Home Rule Bill or as the Fourth Home Rule Act.The Act was intended...

, but none of the safeguards for Southern Unionist interests which it sought were included in the 1921 Anglo-Irish Treaty
Anglo-Irish Treaty
The Anglo-Irish Treaty , officially called the Articles of Agreement for a Treaty Between Great Britain and Ireland, was a treaty between the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and representatives of the secessionist Irish Republic that concluded the Irish War of...

. Successful lobbying by Middleton and associated Southern Unionists was instrumental in ensuring their representation in the Seanad
Seanad Éireann (Irish Free State)
Seanad Éireann was the upper house of the Oireachtas of the Irish Free State from 1922–1936. It has also been known simply as the Senate, or as the First Seanad. The Senate was established under the 1922 Constitution of the Irish Free State but a number of constitutional amendments were...

 of the Irish Free State.

Family

He married, first in 1880, Lady Hilda (died 1901), daughter of Francis Wemyss-Charteris, 9th Earl of Wemyss
Francis Wemyss-Charteris, 9th Earl of Wemyss
Francis Wemyss-Charteris, 9th Earl of Wemyss, 5th Earl of March , was a Scottish peer.Wemyss-Charteris was the son of Francis Douglas, 8th Earl of Wemyss, and succeeded in 1853...

, by whom he had a family; and secondly in 1903, Madeleine Stanley, daughter of Lady St Helier
Francis Jeune, 1st Baron St Helier
Francis Henry Jeune, 1st Baron St Helier GCB, PC, QC , known as Sir Francis Jeune , was a British judge...

 by her first husband. In the 1920 New Year Honours, he was created Earl of Midleton, a title that became extinct with the death of his son in 1979.

His sister, the Honourable Marian Cecilia Brodrick, married Sir James Whitehead, son of the inventor Robert Whitehead
Robert Whitehead
Robert Whitehead was an English engineer. He developed the first effective self-propelled naval torpedo. His company, located in the Austrian naval centre in Fiume, was the world leader in torpedo development and production up to the First World War.- Early life:He was born the son of a...

. Sir James Whitehead was to become the British Ambassador to Austria, and his daughter Agathe was the first wife of Georg Ludwig von Trapp; the story of their children and his second wife, Maria von Trapp
Maria von Trapp
Maria Augusta von Trapp , also known as Baroness Maria von Trapp, was the stepmother and matriarch of the Trapp Family Singers...

 was the basis of the musical The Sound of Music
The Sound of Music
The Sound of Music is a musical by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II and a book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse. It is based on the memoir of Maria von Trapp, The Story of the Trapp Family Singers...

.

Another sister, Albinia, became an early supporter of Sinn Féin
Sinn Féin
Sinn Féin is a left wing, Irish republican political party in Ireland. The name is Irish for "ourselves" or "we ourselves", although it is frequently mistranslated as "ourselves alone". Originating in the Sinn Féin organisation founded in 1905 by Arthur Griffith, it took its current form in 1970...

and renamed herself "Gobnait Ní Bhruadair".

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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