Wilkinson Family

Biography/History

Wilkinson Family of Moneyshare, Tobermore, Co. Londonderry, descendants of the leading judge and diplomat, Sir Hiram Shaw Wilkinson (1840-1936). Born in 1840, son of John Wilkinson of Belfast and Annabella Shaw of Waringstown, Co. Down, Sir Hiram Shaw Wilkinson studied law at Queen's College Belfast and was admitted to the Bar in 1872. Having entered the Consular service in Japan as a student interpreter in 1864, he became Vice-Consul in 1877 and was appointed Acting Assistant Judge at Shanghai in 1879 and Crown Advocate in 1881. He became British Commissioner for the settlement of claims after the Canton riots in 1883 and was appointed Judge of HM Court for Japan, 1897-1900, and then Chief Justice of HM Supreme Court for China and Korea, 1900-1905. His successful career abroad was recognised at home when he was knighted in 1903 and appointed Pro-Vice Chancellor of the Queen's University of Belfast. Upon retirement, he moved back to his family roots in Moneyshanere, Tobermore, Co. Londonderry, and became Deputy Lieutenant for that county in 1921. He died on 27 September, 1936.