John Henry Ozanne

Posted on Mon, 02/24/2014 - 13:27

John Henry Ozanne CMG (1851-1902) Harold's father, British Commissioner in Gambia

 J H Ozanne in 1869

Harold’s father John was born and raised in Guernsey, son of Dr John Ozanne one of the early proponents of the homeopathic movement. John went to British Guiana as a planter and worked on (Demerara) sugar plantations. He married Mary Searle and both their children were born in Guiana. John moved from Guiana to St Lucia in around 1892 but after the failure of his agricultural venture returned to the UK and joined the British Colonial service.

J H Ozanne in 1879

He became the Travelling Commissioner for the north bank of the Gambia River and played a key role in establishing the territory as a British Protectorate.

He continued his interest in plants and sent samples back to the Botanical Gardens in Kew for their collection. 

For his colonial service he was awarded the CMG (Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George)

John Ozanne's CMG medal which is still in his family's ownership

In 1902 he developed black water fever (a type of malaria) and he died aged 51 in Bathurst, the main town of Gambia.

Being a true colonialist his wife Mary avoided the cold weather of England; she lived in France and died in the Bristol Hotel, Cannes in 1928.