Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Fauquier, Francis
FAUQUIER, FRANCIS (1704?–1768), financial writer, lieutenant-governor of Virginia, was the eldest son of Dr. John Francis Fauquier, one of the directors of the Bank of England, who died 22 Sept. 1726 (Hist. Reg. for 1726, p. 37). His mother's name was Elizabeth Chamberlayne. He was a director of the South Sea Company in 1751, and was elected fellow of the Royal Society on 15 Feb. 1753. In January 1758 he was appointed lieutenant-governor of Virginia. Dr. W. Gordon (Rise, Progress, and Establishment of the Independence of the United States, i. 136) says: ‘Towards the close of 1759 or the beginning of 1760 Mr. Pitt wrote to Francis Fauquier, esq., lieut.-governor of Virginia, and mentioned in his letter that though they had made grants to the colonies, yet when the war was over they should tax them in order to raise a revenue from them. Mr. Fauquier in his answer expressed his apprehension that the measure would occasion great disturbance. The answer might divert Mr. Pitt from his intention.’ Five years later Fauquier had to dissolve the Virginian House of Burgesses on the passing of Patrick Henry's famous resolutions about taxation (ib. i. 171). He died at Williamsburg on 3 March 1768. One of the Virginian counties is named after him. He was married to Sir Charles Dalston's daughter, Catharine, who was buried at Totteridge in 1781.
In ‘An Essay on Ways and Means of Raising Money for the support of the present War without Increasing the Public Debts,’ 1756, Fauquier, adopting an idea of Sir Matthew Decker, proposed that 3,300,000l. a year should be raised by a tax on houses. But in a postscript attached to the second edition (1756) he explains that what he wished to do was not to recommend that particular tax, but to insist on the desirability of paying all charges within the year, and he suggests a kind of capitation or income tax as a substitute for his first proposal. He held strongly the theory that by no means could any taxation be made to fall on the poor. ‘The poor do not, never have, nor possibly can, pay any tax whatever’ (p. 17). The first edition of the essay (which is dedicated to Lord Anson) only bears the author's initials; the second has his name in full. A third edition was published in 1757. There are in the British Museum nine letters written by Fauquier to Colonel Bouquet between 1759 and 1764, chiefly respecting the military forces of Virginia, and one to Sir Henry Moore, dated 3 Feb. 1766 (Addit. MSS. 21644, 21648, 21650, 21651, and 12440). A paper on a hailstorm observed by him in Virginia on 9 July 1758 was read to the Royal Society (Philosophical Transactions, l. 746) by his brother William, who was elected fellow in 1746 and died in 1788 (Lysons, Environs of London, iv. 406).