STEPHENSON, John (1710-94), of Brentford Butts, Mdx.

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



22 Apr. 1754 - 24 Mar. 1755
1761 - 1780
1780 - 1784
1784 - 1790
1790 - 17 Apr. 1794

Family and Education

bap. 16 Nov. 1710, s. and h. of Thomas Stephenson of Bails and Crosslands, Alston, Cumb.1 by w. Margaret (d. 29 July 1759). m. 19 Dec. 1741, Mrs Holford2 (d. 3 Mar. 1767), s.p. legit.3 suc. fa. 1748.

Offices Held

Dir. E.I. Co. 1765-8, Westminster Fire Office 1794.


Stephenson came of a Cumbrian yeoman family which had branched out into trade in Newcastle and London. He probably came to London under the aegis of his prosperous uncle, Sir William Stephenson (lord mayor in 1764), a hop merchant and distiller. He was possessed of a brewery, the Horse Shoe in Banbridge Street, St. Giles, at the time of his death, but after marrying a widow with £25,0004 he became principally a Lisbon wine merchant, trading from the same address (Scotch Yard, Bush Lane) for nearly 50 years. He also developed an interest in government loans and East India Company affairs. Politically he was a protégé of Lord Sandwich. Subsequently he was a friend of Pitt’s administration and in 1790 came in again for Tregony as a guest of Richard Barwell*, the nabob patron. Stephenson, then 80 years of age, was not active in his last Parliament. In April 1791 he was listed hostile to repeal of the Test Act in Scotland. He died 17 Apr. 1794.

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: R. G. Thorne


  • 1. Alston par. reg.; Hodgson, Northumb. iii. pt. 2, p. 85; R. Welford, Mons. in St. Nicholas Church Newcastle, 95.
  • 2. Evidently Mary, widow of Thomas Holford and mother of Josiah Holford of Hampstead, whom Stephenson in his will (PCC 223 Holman) refers to as my ‘son-in-law’.
  • 3. Stephenson’s heir was his ‘natural’ son John Stephenson, brewer, who was drowned in a cooler in the Horse Shoe brewery six months after he had inherited it, Gent. Mag. (1794), ii. 1062.
  • 4. Gent. Mag. (1741), 665.