Lionel George Becher

Lionel George Becher & his Descendants, Joyner, William & Capt Martin Becher

Becher is in England & Ireland at least, a fairly uncommon name. Most are members of the same family tree; although of course there are a few immigrants from Germany or Austria! The family seems to have arisen in Kent, where the name is spelt either Becher or Beecher. One of the branches that I would love to find the link for is that of Lionel George Becher, born about 1712. Lionel is not a common "Becher" name & when it does occur, it is usually in the Irish, rather than the English branches. If anybody has any information about the origins of Lionel George Becher senior or how Captain Martin Becher's branch relates to the Irish Bechers, I would be thrilled to hear from you! My friend Eileen whose branch this is would be ecstatic...see her story here

The three main candidates for his parents are Lionel Becher of Sherkin & his wife Catherine Dunscombe who married in Co Cork, Ireland by Licence dated 1712. Lionel's will leaves his estate to his "Younger" son Edward & several of his daughters, but frustratingly doesn't name the older son!

Another possibility is Lionel Becher born in 1690 in Ireland, the son of Rev Francis Becher [ 1650-1713] of Curiglass & his wife Isabella Andrews. Francis Becher is probably the cleric of Tallow, names in Thomas Becher's will of 1707 as "Kinsman".

My final Irish suggestion is the branch of Lyon/Lyonell/Lionel Becher who was born between  1590 and 1610 and died about 14 August 1676 as noted in the Council Book of Youghal, when he is replaced as council member. Lyonell was a servant to the Earl of Cork . He was recommended to the Earl of Cork by Lady Cleyton in 1637 [whom he had previously been employed by] He married on the 29th Nov 1642 at St Mary, Youghall to Julian Budde [from Devon & relict of Captain Thomas Williams & described as having a fortune]. They had three known children baptised in Bideford, Devon between 1648-52 [Lyonell, John & Mary], when the family was there during a period of war in Ireland. State papers for 9th August 1653 describe Lionel Becher as a Justice for the town of Bideford. They were still in Devon until at least 1655, when he was described as a merchant & involved with selling supplies to the English government for the army in Ireland. Rosemary Ffolliott describes him as "Lyonell of Ballymore, Tullagh & as a tituladoes in the 1659 Census. She also names him as as faithful "49" officer. By 1660  he is once again back in Youghal.  Either he or his son Lionel was Seneschal to Orrery [brother of the Earl of Cork],, appearing in the surviving records from 1671-1689. The Estate papers of the Earl of Cork mention a Lionel Becher junior & it is possible he took over from his father, as a Lionel Becher continues to run the estate until civil war disrupts yet again in 1689. A Henry Becher [presumably his son] escorts some trunks from Youghal to England for the Countess of Orrery in September 1687. With several generations of Lionels, it seems quite possible that there was another...

Lionel George Becher first appears in the records [so far found] on 2.9.1722 when he is made an ensign in the 3rd Reg of Foot [Scot's guards] in Kensington, London. The commission would have cost about 900, so somebody he is connected to had means! He is later transferred to Colonel Egerton's Regiment in Gibraltar via Ireland, before being appointed to Colonel Wynyard's Marines in December 1739 at 1st Lieutenant & promoted to Capt-lieutenant in January 1740 & Captain 11th May 1740. His death at Cartagena was reported in the Gentleman's Magazine in the 1741 Promotions & Deaths.

In about 1727 he married Ann Lake, an illegitimate daughter of General Henry Lumley and Sarah Lowden Lake. They had two known children. Lionel George apparently spent his wife's fortune, leaving her destitute. She died in 1739, not long after the birth of her son in 1737/8, and upon Lionel George's death in 1741 the children were orphaned. Fortunately, Ann's illegitimate brother, General John Brown of Hubbards Hall cared for his neice & nephew.
1. Ann Lucy Marie Madelaine Becher
who was born in about 1728 & died on the 30th June 1784 in Quebec. She married on the 10th October 1763 to General Thomas Clarke. He died 26 October 1799 in Bath, England. She was brought up by nuns in a Catholic Convent school in Flanders after the death of her parents.
2. Joyner Becher was born in 1737/8 and died on the 23rd March 1822 at Broad Street, Wokingham, Berkshire. Apparently he was raised by an Uncle, Henry Lake in Berkshire. He was a Maltster. At the time of his marriage he was of St Nicholas Coleabby, London. He married on the 20th July 1763 to Sarah Harris.
Joyner & Sarah had a large family of 15 children all baptised at Wokingham. They were;
1. Henry Becher [1765-1767]
2. Ann Lucy Becher [1766-?after 1801] She married Major General Vere Poulett in 1784 & had seven children,
3.Mary Becher [1768-?],
4.Catherine Becher [1768-? After 1793]
5. William Becher [1770-1849] More on him below!
6. Isabella Maria Becher [1772-1772]
7. Harriott Becher [1773-1838]
8. Lionel George Becher [1776-1804]
9. Isabella Maria Becher [1777-?]
10. Charlotte Sophia Becher [1778-?]
11. Percival Becher [1780-?]
12. Mary Anne Becher [1782-1866] She died at Partis College, Bath.
13. Captain Henry Becher [1784-1861] Henry lead a colourful life, starting with a career in the Navy, then the Indian Merchant service & finally as an Indigo Planter in India. He died in his sleep in Calcutta.
14. Charles Becher [1786-?]
15. Thomas Becher [1787-1864]. Buried at Beckingham, Kent. He married in 1818 to Ann Mary Holland. They had two children, George Lionel Becher born in 1821 & Harriet Becher born in 1822.

Harriet Becher. She married John William Sutton & died in 1901.
Thanks to Eileen Franchi for the photograph.

William Becher born in 1770 in Wokingham, Berkshire & died on 8 October 1849 at 1 Gloucester Place, New Road, Marylebone. He was in the 31st Regiment & also a farmer in Norfolk. He lived at Monks House. On the 8th Jan 1793 at Wokingham, he married Harriet Martina Thompson. They had at least 6 children;

1. Harriet Martina Becher [1794-1869]. She married Frederick Nepean 20 Nov 1816 in Calcutta & had five children.
2. William Becher [1795-1795]
3. Caroline Frances "Fanny" Becher [1796-between 1861-1871]. She married on 11 Dec 1818 at Rungapore, India to William Lowther. They had four children.
4. Captain Martin William Becher the well known steeple-chase rider of Becher's Brook fame! [1797-1864] He married on the 14th August 1825 to Susan Dobree, daughter of John Richards Dobree. They had two children; Martin John King Becher [1830-1901] a chemist & playwright & Dr. George Tobin Dashwood Becher [1835-1929] a Physician. Martin also had an illegitimate daughter, Mary Ann Becher born in 1838.

Martin John King Becher on Ladybird by F C Turner. Thanks to Julian for the photo.

5. Isabella Lucy Becher [1798-1798]
6. John Edward Becher [1800-abt 1849]. John went to India in 1825 to be an Indigo Planter at Berhampore. He was in the same region as his Uncle Henry Becher. He had a wife or mistress called Marcellina Meade [no marriage has been found, but she was buried as Marcellina Becher in Bengal in 1864]. They had a Harriette Becher in 1842 & an Edward St Julian Becher in 1849 [baptised postumously]. Edward may have later become an Indigo planter as well. John also had a son, John Martin Becher [known from a book on the Indigo Planters of Tirhoot by Minden Wilson]. John Martin was born in about 1831 & died on the 6th August 1885 at Mozufferapore of Consumption.

Becher family of Cork [Home].