GLEADOWE NEWCOMEN, Hon. Thomas (1776-1825), of Carrickglass, co. Longford and Killester, co. Dublin.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1802 - 1806

Family and Education

b. 18 Sept. 1776, o. surv. s. of Sir William Gleadowe Newcomen, 1st Bt.*, by Charlotte, da. and h. of Charles Newcomen. educ. Eton 1785-93, Christ Church, Oxf. 1793; St. Mary’s Hall, Oxf. 1794; L. Inn 1794. unm. 8 ch. suc. fa. as 2nd Bt. 21 Aug. 1807; mother as 2nd Visct. Newcomen [I] 16 May 1817.

Offices Held

Gov. co. Longford 1813.

Capt. commdt. Kenagh inf. 1796.


Gleadowe Newcomen stepped unopposed into his father’s shoes as county Member in 1802 and like him was expected to support government. The Castle found it ‘unaccountable’ when he voted with the minority, 4 Mar. 1803, for inquiry into the Prince of Wales’s finances, though the viceroy hinted that he was one of the Irish Members enticed by the Prince’s civilities. The chief secretary sent instructions for Newcomen senior to be remonstrated with, particularly as the latter, whose steadiness did not come into question, had just seen the fulfilment of the final demand in his Union bargain, that his wife should take a second step in the Irish peerage.1

This vote of 4 Mar. 1803 is the only positive evidence of Newcomen’s attendance. In the spring of 1804 he was ‘in Ireland and uncertain’, though reported by the viceroy to be leaving at once, 30 Apr. Though subsequently listed a supporter of Pitt’s second ministry, he was absent indisposed in December 1804, in Ireland in April 1805, and on 1 June, reported the viceroy, ‘really unable from illness to undertake the journey, having had a very bad fever’. The Grenville ministry noted in May 1806 that Newcomen ‘did not give the late government any effectual support’ and was ‘not able to attend Parliament’, but the chief secretary had ‘no reason to suppose he is unfriendly to us’, 15 Aug.2

It was understood that Newcomen’s health would discourage him from standing again. He denied this but rather than face a contest he withdrew. In 1807, although the Portland ministry wished him to stand, he again declined.3 When in June 1813 he applied to be a governor of county Longford, the viceroy raised no objection, despite the risk of offending his ‘old friend’ Lord Granard.4 Newcomen died 15 Jan. 1825, whereupon the family bank, in which he was chief partner, stopped payment as the result of a panicky rumour that he had overdrawn on it, a supposition that proved ‘wholly unfounded’.5

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: Arthur Aspinall


  • 1. Add. 35766, f. 321; 35772, f. 112; Wickham mss 5/19, Wickham to Marsden, 6 Mar. 1803.
  • 2. Add. 35705, f. 302; f. 35710, f. 106; Spencer mss, Irish list, May 1806; HMC Fortescue, viii. 282.
  • 3. Dublin Evening Post, 9 Oct., 25 Nov. 1806; Wellington Supp. Despatches, v. 18.
  • 4. Add. 40186, f. 98.
  • 5. Gent. Mag. (1825), i. 179, 290.