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Beauclerk, Thomas W. S.


Age: 14, credited to Irasburg, VT
Unit(s): Cadet
Service: Cadet, Kentucky Military Institute, 1861, nfr

See Legend for expansion of abbreviations


Birth: 03/21/1847, Northumberland, England
Death: 01/29/1938

Burial: Irasburg Cemetery, Irasburg, VT
Marker/Plot: Not recorded
Gravestone photographer: Denis & Karen Jaquish
Findagrave Memorial #: 123994921


Alias?: None noted
Pension?: Not eligible
Portrait?: Unknown
College?: Not Found
Veterans Home?: Not Found
(If there are state digraphs above, this soldier spent some time in a state or national soldiers' home in that state after the war)

Remarks: In the past, tombstone has been marked with a Confederate flag.


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Irasburg Cemetery, Irasburg, VT

Check the cemetery for location/directions and other veterans who may be buried there.



Thomas Wentworth Sydney Beauclerk was one of those people one "warmly rejoiced to be with." In his passing Irasburg loses a citizen who for nearly 60 years was an outstanding personality in this community. We knew very little about him. From his name and the fact that he spoke French perfectly, some of us supposed that he came from France. Those who asked found that he was English. The records of the English peerage show that he was the second child of Lord Charles Beauclerk and Lady Laura Maria Theresa Stepford Beauclerk of Nottingham, Eng., and that he was born March 21, 1847. Moreover, that his paternal grandfather was the Eighth Duke of St. Albana, having residence in Lincolnshire, England. His maternal grandfather was Colonel Stepford, who was for a number of years the British Ambassador to Spain.

When Sydney was but a young lad his father was lost at sea in attempting to rescue a man who had been swept overboard. He had already saved two but on plunging in the third time he himself was lost. Documentary evidence is not immediately available to show just where this occurred, but we do know that as early as 1837 Lord Charles Beauclerk was captain in the Royal Regiment and saw service in Canada during that year. After his father's death Sydney went to live with his maternal grandparents in the British Embassy in Spain. Evidently he traveled extensively and studied diligently, for he learned the Spanish language and retained vivid memories of the Spanish language and of places he had seen, up to the end of his life.

Contemporaneously with Colonel Stepford's residence in Spain our own government had as its representative at the Spanish Court General Preston of Lexington, Ky. Apparently the two Ambassadors were the best of friends, for after the death of his grandfather Sydney, at the age of 12, came to the United States and lived in the home of General Preston in order to continue his education. He attended and graduated from the Military Institute at Lexington, Ky. Whether this was done in an uninterrupted series of years is not clear. But let us remember that the fourteenth birthday of this English lad was March 22, 1861. Also that he was less than a month past his eighteenth birthday, when General Lee surrendered in 1865. What could be more natural than he should offer his services to the cause his friends espoused? Sydney was loyal to his friends. He was loyal in deed. He carried on his body for the rest of his life the marks of sabre cuts and a bullet wound received in that conflict. After completing his studies at Lexington he went to Troy, N.Y., where he took courses in civil engineering at the Polytechnic Institute. There he was graduated and for a time practiced his profession.

While living at Troy he made the acquaintance of the family of Ira H. Allen, in whose honor"Irasburg" received its name. In 1872 he was united in marriage with Mary Frances, daughter of the Hon. And Mrs. Ira H. Allen. Mrs. Beauclerk died 15 months later when their daughter, May, was but two week sold.

In 1875 Mr. Beauclerk was married to Elizabeth Yates of Utica, N.Y. They went to Virginia where they resided three years. During their residence in Virginia their son, Prestop, and daughter, Laura Marie, were born. About 50 years ago they came to Irasburg where the family residence has since remained. Another son, Harry, was born here, who at the age of ten was drowned while bathing in the river. Mrs. Beauclerk died in 1911, since which time Mr. Beauclerk has lived with his only surviving child, Mrs. P. C. Walter Templeton.

The son, Preston Beauclerk, became a physician and practiced medicine in Concord, N.H., for many years. His only son, Sydney Beauclerk was killed in action in France October 28, 1918, while making a reconnaissance flight behind the German lines. Dr. Preston Beauclerk died in 1926 and is survived by his widow and their daughter, Barbara Beauclerk.

Thomas Wentworth Sydney Beauclerk is also survived by eight grandchildren. Through the marriage of his daughter, May there are: Allen Gaynor, Harold Gaynor and Charles Beauclerk Gaynor. Then Barbara Beauclerk mentioned above, and Elizabeth Templeton Nelson; Ruth Templeton Colburn, Margaret Templeton, daughters of Dr. and Mrs. P. C. Walter Templeton. There are also eight great-grandchildren.

The funeral services were held on Tuesday February 1, at the United church, Irasburg, with the Rev. A. B. Kettell officiating. The American Legion Posts of Barton and Orleans were represented by their flags and a group of their members. The casket was draped with an American flag and the Union Jack was displayed at the head of the bier. There was a profusion of floral pieces, the flowers from which were distributed among the shut-ins in this and surrounding towns after the service. The Rev. A. B. Kettell very ably conducted a simple, yet very impressive service. Instead of a formal address he read from a favorite book of Mr. Beauclerk's selections which our friend had marked as expressing his own thought and philosophy of life. The honorary pall bearers were: G. W. Russell, D. A. Brahana, M. C. Pike, and C. B. McGoff, of Irasburg, and J. B. Colton and R. A. Bean of Orleans. Interment was in the cemetery at Irasburg.

Among the outstanding qualities of this English gentleman his loyalty to his friends has already been shown. He was loyal to his country. He had all of the Englishman's love for his personal liberty, combined with just as intense a loyalty to what an English nobleman means by The King's Majesty. Our friend was English, and was proud of it and counted it dishonorable to change his allegiance. About his adopted village and in surrounding towns one may hear stories of his quiet generosity. One story is current of some years ago during an exceptionally hard winter this gentleman saw to it that ten barrels of flour reached as many needy families. A retired merchant mentioned how quietly and unostentatiously his charitable enterprises were carried out. Again before the days of trained nurses we find him watching by beds of sickness and pain. Sometimes he took charge of the funeral arrangements for the departed, nor is evidence lacking which shows that it was he who supplied the casket in homes where the pinch of poverty was felt. A glance at his library shows that he was a man of thorough culture and a wide reader. Many of us will remember best our friend's keen appreciation of and love for all nature - including human nature. By his keen wit and very kindly humor, joined to no mean artistic ability, he enabled us to enjoy with him the humorous aspects of various accidents and incidents of everyday life as depicted in his sketches.

His temperate habits, and erect soldierly bearing might well be emulated by any youth. Doubtless the habits formed at Lexington Military Institute had a lasting influence. Physical exercises with Indian clubs and dumb-bells were a part of his daily routine until the encroachments of age obliged him to desist. That he retained his faculties unimpaired and was interested in passing events to the end is evidenced by the fact that he read a daily paper four days before his death. We can but be grateful that such a life was lived among us. We are glad, too to be reminded of that thought of David Grayson's in his "Great Possessions," "That which passes from me to you in the touch of the hand, in the glance of the eye, is more valuable than minted money."

Source: Orleans County Monitor, February 9, 1938
Courtesy of Tom Boudreau.