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George Fitzgerald Hill (1763 - 1839):

George Hill was born in Derry city and was educated there, at the Derry Diocesan School (known locally as Rev Torrens’ School) and at the University of Dublin. He graduated BA in 1783 and after study at Lincoln’s Inn, London was called to the Bar in 1786. 

On 10 September 1788 he married Jane Beresford, from a very political family, and soon embarked on a political career, taking seats for Coleraine, then Derry, and on his father’s demise in 1795 succeeded to his baronetcy.

In 1796 he became a Treasurer Commissioner and also served as a Clerk to the Irish Parliament from 1798 until its dissolution in 1800. From 4 July 1791 he was Recorder of the City Of Derry and a magistrate for County Londonderry. Perhaps his most significant action as magistrate was that he identified Wolfe Tone when the latter landed at Buncrana in November 1798 from a French warship; Hill had known Tone at the Bar and at Dublin University.

After the Acts of Union he was an active Westminster MP and was appointed an Irish Privy Councillor on 24 December 1808. On one of the great questions of the day, he was prepared to present petitions to Parliament on behalf of his Catholic constituents, but was opposed to Catholic Emancipation.

He ended his career as Governor of St Vincent and Governor of Trinidad.

Born: 1 June 1763
Died: 8 March 1839
Kate Newmann

Additional research: Richard Froggatt; Dictionary of Irish Biography