Maitland, Frederick (1763-1848) (DNB00)

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MAITLAND, FREDERICK (1763–1848), general, born on 3 Sept. 1763, was youngest son of General Hon. Sir Alexander Maitland, bart., colonel 49th foot (d. 1820), by his wife, Penelope, daughter of Colonel Martin Madan, M.P., and sister of Martin Madan, bishop of Peterborough [q. v.] Charles Maitland, sixth earl of Lauderdale [see under Maitland, John, fifth earl], was his grandfather. On 1 Sept. 1779 Frederick was appointed ensign 14th foot, in which he became lieutenant on 19 Sept. 1782. He served with a company of his regiment doing duty as marines in the Union, 90 guns, Captain J. Dalrymple, in the Channel, in 1779–80, and on board Admiral Darby's fleet at the relief of Gibraltar in 1782 [see Darby, George]. He afterwards served fifteen months in Jamaica. In 1784 he was transferred to the 30th foot, was placed on half-pay, and devoted his leisure to study. In 1787 he went back to the West Indies, and was some time assistant quartermaster-general in Jamaica. He obtained his company in the 60th royal Americans in 1789, and brought the despatches announcing the capture of Tobago in April 1793. The Fairy sloop, 18 guns, Captain John Laforey [q. v.], in which he came home, was engaged during the voyage with a French 32-gun frigate, which escaped. Maitland was brevet major and aide-de-camp to Sir Charles Grey [see Grey, Charles, first Earl Grey] at the relief of Nieuport and Ostend in 1794, and deputy adjutant-general, with the brevet of lieutenant-colonel, at the capture of Martinique, Guadaloupe, and St. Lucia in the same year. He was promoted major 9th foot in 1794, and lieutenant-colonel in 1795, when he was transferred to the 27th Inniskillings. He went back to the West Indies in 1795, as military secretary to Sir Ralph Abercromby, with whom he served at St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Porto Rico, and elsewhere, in 1795–7. Returning home in the Arethusa, 38 guns, Captain T. Woolley, he was present and commanded the cabin guns of the frigate at the capture of the French corvette, La Gaieté, 125 leagues east by south of Bermuda, on 20 Aug. 1797. He afterwards served on Abercromby's staff in Scotland, and in the expedition to Holland in 1799. As a brevet-colonel he returned once more to the West Indies in 1800, and was quartermaster-general there for six years. He commanded a brigade at the reduction of the Danish, Swedish, and Dutch West India islands in 1800–1. He was transferred as lieutenant-colonel from the Inniskillings to the 29th foot, was appointed brigadier-general in 1804, and commanded a brigade at the capture of Surinam. He became a major-general in 1805, and in 1807 was second in command, under General Bowyer, at the recapture of the Dutch and Danish islands, which had been restored at the peace of Amiens. At St. Thomas's he received the sword of the governor, Van Schogen, on the selfsame spot that he had received it six years before. He commanded a brigade at the capture of Martinique in 1809 (gold medal) and the subsequent operations at Les Saintes.

Maitland was appointed lieutenant-governor of Grenada in 1805, and except when absent on active service as above, administered the civil government of the island until 1810. He was an upright and painstaking administrator. Although his legal knowledge was self-acquired, his decisions as vice-chancellor were never reversed save in a solitary instance on a technical point of law. His private views were opposed to the abolition of slavery. He became a lieutenant-general in 1811, and on 1 Jan. 1812 was appointed second in command in the Mediterranean under Lord William Bentinck [see Bentinck, Lord William Cavendish, 1774–1839]. In that capacity he commanded the Anglo-Sicilian army sent from Sicily to the east coast of Spain to make a diversion on Suchet's left flank (Napier, revised edit. iv. 188). The state of affairs in Sicily prevented Bentinck from detaching a force of the dimensions expected by Wellington, and the motley corps of nine thousand British, German Legion, Swiss, Sicilians, and Neapolitans, with which Maitland arrived off Palamos on 31 July 1812, was too ill-provided as regarded commissariat and field-train to justify a landing there. Maitland proceeded to Alicante, landed his troops, and opened communication with the Spanish generals in Murcia. After some desultory movements he began to entrench his camp at Alicante at the end of August (ib. iv. 305 et seq.) But his health was broken, and at the beginning of November, having done nothing, he resigned the command to General Mackenzie (ib. iv. 394), and returned home. He received the lieutenant-governorship of Dominica on 30 June 1813, in recognition of his past services.

Maitland, a full general in 1825, was appointed in 1810 colonel in succession of the 1st Ceylon regiment (afterwards the late Ceylon rifles) and in 1833 of the 58th foot. A memoir by him on the defences of Mount's Bay, Cornwall, is in the ‘Wellington Correspondence,’ vii. 149–51. He died at Tunbridge Wells on 27 Jan. 1848, aged 84. His eldest brother, Sir Alexander Maitland-Gibson (or Gibson-Maitland), second baronet, deputy governor of the Bank of Scotland, only survived him a few days (cf. Gent. Mag. 1848, i. 435). He married at Barbados, in November 1790, Catherine, daughter of John Prettijohn of that island, who with three out of her nine children survived him.

[Foster's Peerage, under ‘Lauderdale;’ Foster's Baronetage, under ‘Maitland;’ Philippart's Royal Military Cal. 1820, vol. ii.; Napier's Hist. of Peninsular War, revised ed. vol. iv.; Gent. Mag. 1848, pt. i. 437.]

H. M. C.