John Huske

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Governor 1749-1761
John Huske


This etching of Elizabeth Castle by John Boydell (1719-1804) was dedicated to John Huske

John Huske was Governor for 22 years and devoted very little of that time to island affairs. He is known to have visited Jersey briefly - for about six weeks - two years after he was appointed. History does not record whether he ever returned

John Huske (1692-1761) was a British Army general known for his leadership at the Battle of Falkirk and the Battle of Culloden during the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745.


He was appointed on 7 April 1708 ensign in Colonel Toby Caulfield's regiment of foot, then campaigning in Spain, and subsequently disbanded. He obtained his company in Lord Hertford's (15th foot) on 11 January 1715. On 22 July 1715 he was appointed captain and lieutenant-colonel of one of the four new companies then added to the Coldstream Guards.

At that time and afterwards he was aide-de-camp to William Cadogan, 1st Earl Cadogan. In two letters written by Cadogan, at the Hague, in a feigned name, promising high reward for disclosure of Jacobite plots, confidence is invited in the writer's aide-de-camp, Colonel John Huske, who, in the letter of 1 November 1716, is deputed to meet the recipient (E Burke) privately at Cambray. The treasury records note a payment of £100 to Huske for a journey to Paris on particular service, and disbursements by him for the subsistence of three Dutch and two Swiss battalions in the pay of Holland, which were taken into the British service on the alarms of an invasion from Spain in April 1719.

Huske was appointed Lieut-governor of Hurst Castle on 8 July 1721; became second major of the Coldstreamers, 30 October 1734; first major, 5 July 1739; and colonel 32nd foot, 25 December 1740. He was a brigadier at the battle of Dettingen, where he was severely wounded. He was promoted major-general, and appointed colonel 23rd Royal Welsh Fusiliers 28 July 1743, in recognition of his distinguished services.

On the breaking out of the rebellion in 1745, he was appointed to serve under General George Wade at Newcastle, and on 25 December of that year was given a command in Scotland. By his conduct at the battle of Falkirk, where he was second in command to Henry Hawley, he secured the retreat of the royal forces to Linlithgow. He distinguished himself at the battle of Culloden, where he commanded the second line of the Duke of Cumberland's army. He gave the orders that defeated the rebel charge on the left flank, and decided the battle.

He became a lieut-general in 1747, and again served in Flanders in 1747-48. As was then not uncommon with general officers otherwise unemployed, he joined his regiment in Minorca, and commanded it during the unsuccessful defence of that island in 1756. He became a full general 5 December 1756.


He was appointed to the governorship of Sheerness in 1745, and transferred to that of Jersey in 1749. A brave, blunt veteran, whose solicitude for his soldiers earned him the nickname of 'Daddy Huske', he died at Baling, near London on 18 January 1761.

Jersey visit

Huske was very much a non-resident Governor but he visited Jersey two years after his appointment, in July 1751.

His visit was recorded in the diary kept at the time by Thomas Le Maistre.

He arrived on a visit on 11 July 1751, and

"He stepped ashore at about 5 in the afternoon, at St Helier's harbour, and was received with great joy by the Lieut-Governor (William Deane), Lieut-Bailiff (Charles Lempriere) and several Jurats and other noblemen of the Island, and a great crowd of people. Much artillery was fired at Elizabeth Castle and St Aubin's Fort and aboard the yacht ("yat") which brought him here, and 21 volleys, that is, 18 on the quay and 3 in the cemetery, on the Town quay. On leaving the quay he was met by the five Town Companies in two ranks, reaching to the Prison, and at the Prison he was received by some of the invalid soldiers of the garrison. He then came back to Charles Dauvergne's house where he is to be lodged. But before that he took refreshments with the Lieut-Governor, having shaken hands with all the accompanying nobility. The five Town Companies then camped in the Market Place, and fired three volleys ... later they returned home."

On 23 July there was a Review before the Governor:

"Good weather considering what a bad year it is. The Governor dined all the nobility of the Island and the Officers at his own expense, and he gave money to each company for drinks, each soldier having £6 6s (tournois) apart from the drummer and sergeants. Having enquired how much each Militia company had received, I learnt that the General gave £14 to each company, and 15 sous to each mounted man, and the artillery at St Saviour had £4 3s.
“On 26 July the General dined the States. On the 28th he came to St Saviour's Church to hear the sermon, accompanied by some of the nobility of the Island, and after the service the Governor and his suite dined with the Lieut- Bailiff at St Saviour."
”On 17 August the Governor left the Island to go to Granville, and slept the night at Chausey, and came back the next day, and was greeted on his return as he had been on first arrival, with artillery on the quay and 21 volleys, three in the Cemetery, and 21 at Elizabeth Castle. God bless and preserve him. His intention on leaving here had been to go to Paris."

Predecessor Successor
Richard Temple
1723 - 1749
John Huske
1749 - 1761
George Keppel
1761 - 1772
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