JACKSON, George (1725-1822), of Hartham House, Corsham, Wilts.
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Family and Education
b. 24 Oct. 1725, 1st surv. s. of George Jackson of Richmond, Yorks. by Hannah, da. of William Ward of Guisborough, Yorks. m. (1) 24 Sept. 1745, his cos. Mary (d. 1754), da. of William Ward of Guisborough, 3s. 3da.; (2) 9 Sept. 1775, Grace, da. and h. of Gwyn Goldstone, merchant, of Goldstone, Salop by Grace, da. of George Duckett of Hartham House, Wilts., wid. of Robert Neale of Shaw House, Melksham, Wilts., 1s. suc. fa. 1758; cr.Bt. 28 July 1791; assumed name of Duckett 3 Feb. 1797, in accordance with the will of his w.’s uncle Thomas Duckett.
Second sec. to Admiralty Nov. 1766-June 1782; judge adv. to the fleet 1769- d.
Jackson entered the navy office as a clerk about 1743. In 1766 on Chatham’s recommendation he was transferred to the Admiralty by Sir Charles Saunders, and in 1769 became judge advocate and second secretary to the Board. After the fall of North’s Administration he retained his post as judge advocate, but was dismissed from his secretaryship with a pension of £400 a year. ‘The strange conduct of the Admiralty’ in dismissing ‘probably the most useful man at the Board’ was raised in the House of Commons, 12 May 1783, by John Buller senior, who declared that ‘a more able and honest man never served the public’.1
Before the general election of 1784 Jackson appears in Robinson’s lists of those to be brought in, and willing to pay ‘£1,500, or perhaps somewhat more’.2 He was tentatively put down for Rochester, but eventually stood as the Government candidate at Penryn, where he was defeated. In 1786 he was returned for Weymouth and Melcombe Regis in place of its patron, Gabriel Steward, who took the Chiltern Hundreds. No vote or speech by Jackson is reported during this Parliament. Towards the end of 1788 he vacated his seat and with Government support contested the expensive borough of Colchester.3 He was returned, but the following year was unseated on petition.
Jackson was keenly interested in improving inland waterways, and according to the Gentleman’s Magazine (1822, ii. 644) ‘employed his leisure hours in making the river Stort navigable’. He died 15 Dec. 1822.