Robert Brooke (East India Company officer)

Robert Brooke (East India Company Officer)

Robert Brooke (East India Company officer)

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This article is about the governor of St. Helena. For the governor of Virginia, see Robert Brooke .
Colonel Sir Robert Brooke (1744–1811), Lieutenant-Colonel in the army of Bengal and Governor of the island of St Helena from 1788 to 1800.He married in 1775, Anna Maria Mapletoft, daughter of Reverend Robert Mapletoft, Assistant Chaplain to the East India Company at St John's, Calcutta; they had five sons and two daughters.

Early history

Brooke was born in Rathavan House, Co.Cavan, Ireland, and entered the service of the East India Company in 1764 as a cadet, aged 20. After a career in military administration in India, he took sick leave and moved to Co. Kildare in Ireland. In 1775 he married Anna Maria Mapletoft Wynne and built Killybegs House (demolished in 1958).

He attempted to establish a cotton industry in the area and the town of Prosperous owes its origin to the vision and ideals of Robert Brook . The late eighteenth century was a time of attempted industrial development in Ireland and the industry upon which Prosperous was founded in 1780 was cotton manufacturing. The name chosen by Brook for his industrial town could only be the product of a confident dream. Within six years had failed miserably. He spent his own money, that of his wife and the grants he received from Grattan's parliament. His losses were almost the equivalent of the national debt. He employed almost 4,000 by 1784, yet by 1786 the works and all his remaining property had to be abandoned to his...
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