Breadcrumbs

Oakham’s global outreach – Part 1

Today at Oakham the Registrar comments that around twenty nations are represented in the school community. Recently an interesting question has been posed: what is known of the first non-native students at the school and what were their ethnicities? This article attempts to answer those questions but cannot claim to be fully comprehensive given the lack of knowledge, and certainly of detailed knowledge, of so many of the students up until 1875. This is, in part, to the absence of school registers or entry details for boys who attended the school before c. 1836.

The first (and only seventeenth century) student noted to have been born outside of England was Robert Fish, born in 1666 in Ennis in Ireland but at the time of his schooldays at Oakham his father was Rector of Great Cotes in Lincolnshire.

Jeremiah Jackson was a second Irish-born Oakhamian who went up to Cambridge in 1767 and became Master of Uppingham (1777-93).

In the 19th century, we begin to see a more diverse pool of students from across the globe. The expansion of the British Empire had a part to play in this change. Many of the pupils were born in multiple places around the world but their ethnic origin was British. Several students were born in India. These included:

  • George Martine Braune
  • Thomas Robinson,
  • Robert Evelyn Roy
  • Edward Adams Baddeley
  • William Gascoigne Roya
  • Francis Wrighton Robinson
  • Eugene Bronlow Catell
  • William Parkinson Jay
  • William Garnet Welman
  • Edward Monson George

Many of these boys’ fathers were ordained as priests (presumably missionaries over to Asia) or were soldiers in the East India Company.

Irish born pupils are equally as numerous at Oakham School during the 1800s.

  • John Hilbebrand
  •  Otho Francis Wyer
  • Herbert de Burgh Dwyer
  • Charles Edward Fishbourne
  • John Wellington Russell Almond
  • Thomas Plunkett Cather
  • Frederick Schimberg Kerry
  • John Godfrey Fitzmaurice
  • Herbert Taylor Ottley
  • Maurice Fitzmaurice
  • John Harvey Sikes
  • Osmond William Toone Westenra Plantagenet Hastings
  • John William
  • William Pakenham Cole Sheane
  • Frederick Moriss Roberts
  • Henry Heathcote White
  • John Hugh Gillies
  • Osmond William Toone Westenra Plantagenet Hastings

From then on, we have records of Oakham School pupils being born in so many places around the world including Europe, Australia, and South America. Below is a list of those born outside of the UK.

  • William Henry Williamson – Born in Florence, Italy.
  • George Augustus Sweny – Born in Quimper, France
  • Clarence James Mire - Born in Montreux, Switzerland
  • Anthony Frederick Daniell - Born in Born Bay, East Indies.
  • James Macauley, Jeremy Macauley, and Homer Dixon Mitchell - Born in Canada
  • George Buchanan and William Rowan Hume Moffatt - Born in Ontario, Canada
  • Henry Hardy Peach - Born in Ontarion, Canada
  • Christopher and Alfred Greaves – Born in the USA.
  • Tom Francis Luis Fernandes - Born in Lima, Peru.
  • Charles Holmes Joy – Born in Valpariso, Chile
  • Arthur Mackay Joy – Born in Valpariso, Chile
  • Edwin Woodgate – Born in Valpariso, Chile.
  • Harold Methven Musson – Born in Uruguay. Harold had an interesting career after school, becoming a rancher in Argentina before enlisting with the Royal Field Artillery in the First World War. Musson died of his wounds during the battle of Passchendaele in 1917.
  • Allan Greaves – Born in New South Wales, Australia.
  • Victor Henry Wadham Forster – Born in Victoria, Australia.
  • Stephen Goddard Teakle – Born in Masterton, New Zealand.
  • Aubrey Spencer Grant – Born in Barbados.
  • Wilfred Kenneth Hamilton – Born in Dominica, West Indies.
  • Percival Henry Farquarson – Born in Jamaica.
  • William Rastick and John Rastick Lee – Born in Jamaica.
  • Henry William Marriott Swann – Born in Nassau, The Bahamas.
  • Ernest Alfred Prebbel – Born in Russia.
  • Frederick George Talmage Nelson – Born in Persia (now Iran).

Like today, Oakham School’s community stretched far across the globe. However, there is no evidence thus far that any of the boys attending Oakham pre 20th century, were anything other than British citizens who were born abroad. Most were born abroad as a direct consequence of their father’s profession and by the time they attended Oakham, the boys and their families were living permanently in England.

In the next part, we will explore the twentieth century and try to discover the first non-British pupils who attended Oakham School.

 

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