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Lieut. General James Wolfe, son of Edward Wolfe and Henrietta Wolfe [Thompson] Printer friendly version

© National Portrait Gallery

The Death of James Wolfe, Québec, 1759 by Benjamin West (1738 - 1820)

General James Wolfe was born in Westerham, Kent, on 2nd January 1727, the son of Lieutenant-General Edward Wolfe and Henrietta Thompson. His boyhood years were spent in Westerham and then Greenwich. He entered the army at the age of 14, and served with distinction throughout the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-47) and the Scottish campaign of 1746 against the pretender to the British throne, Charles Edward Stuart. In 1757 the British secretary of state, William Pitt (the Elder), made Wolfe second in command under Major General Jeffrey Amherst, British commander in chief in North America. Wolfe's competence in the siege and capture (1758) of the French fortress of Louisbourg, N.S., earned him promotion to major general and the command of a military and naval expedition against Québec.

In June 1759, he sailed up the Saint Lawrence River with some 9000 troops and encamped above the city. Baffled by the inactivity of the French defenders, he launched a frontal attack on their entrenched positions on July 31. The attack was unsuccessful, and Wolfe's aides counselled a landing on the north shore of the St. Lawrence. On the night of September 12, Wolfe moved about 5000 of his men downstream to a landing point about about 1.5 miles south-west of Québec. Scaling a steep cliff to the Plains of Abraham above Québec, the British troops forced the French into an open battle early on September 13 and decisively defeated them. This success ended France's ambitions in North America.

Wolfe was, however, wounded and died on 13th September 1759. His body was taken back to Great Britain, where it was interred at the church of St Alfege, Greenwich, on 20 November 1759


See also Hasted's History of Kent, English Homes and Villages (Kent and Sussex) and
Date Type Information Source
 
2nd Jan 1727BornAt The Vicarage in the Parish of Westerham, KentODNB web site
 
11th Jan 1727ChristenedAt St. Mary's Church in the Parish of Westerham, KentWesterham Parish Registers
 
1728 to 1738At Quebec House in the Parish of Westerham, KentODNB web site
 
13th Sep 1759DiedODNB web site
 
20th Nov 1759BuriedIn the Parish of Greenwich, KentODNB web site
 
Ancestor's report
No descendent's report
Wolf, Woolf, Wolfan, Wolfe individual records
  
The ancestral pedigree of Lieut. General James Wolfe
 
  
 Captain George Wolfem: c 1650Mrs 
 b: c 1621  b: c 1625
  
  
 Edward 
 b: c 1651
d: c 1715
 
    
Great-
Grandfather record
   
   
 
   
 Major Edward Wolfem: c 1675Margaret Southerne 
 b: c 1651
d: c 1715
  b: c 1653
  
        
 Ann Margaret Arabella Jane Frydaweed Edward Walter 
 b: 1676 Dublin, Ireland
ch: 14th Dec 1676 St. Michan, Dublin
 b: 1677/78 Dublin, Ireland
ch: 16th Feb 1677/78 St. Michan, Dublin
 b: 1679 Dublin, Ireland
ch: 4th Apr 1679 St. Michan, Dublin
 b: 1680 to 1684 Dublin, Ireland
d: July 1684 Ireland
bur: 16th Jul 1684 St. Michan, Dublin, Ireland, buried in Mr Tighe's tomb in the churchyard
 b: 1680 to 1687 Dublin, Ireland
d: May 1687 Ireland
bur: 22nd May 1687 St. Michan, Dublin, Ireland
 b: 1685
d: 27th Mar 1759
 b: 1688
d: 1771 Dublin, Ireland
 
                 
Grandfather record
   
   
 
   
 Edward Wolfem: 12th Feb 1722/23 Long Marston, YorkshireHenrietta Thompson 
 b: 1685
d: 27th Mar 1759
  b: 1703 daughter of Edward Thompson
d: 1764
  
   
 James Edward 
 b: 2nd Jan 1727 The Vicarage, Westerham, Kent
ch: 11th Jan 1727 St. Mary's Church
d: 13th Sep 1759
bur: 20th Nov 1759 Greenwich, Kent
 b: 1728
ch: 10th Jan 1728 St. Mary's Church, Westerham, Kent
d: October 1744
 
Parental record
 
 
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