Hamar Greenwood PC KC Bt

Thomas Hamar Greenwood PC KC Bt (1870 - 1948)

Privacy Level: Open (White)
Sir Thomas Hamar (Hamar) Greenwood PC KC Bt
Born in Whitby, Ontario, Canadamap
Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married (to ) [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in London, England, United Kingdommap
Profile last modified | Created 13 Jul 2017
This page has been accessed 115 times.

Categories: Justices of the Peace of Middlesex | Chancellors of the Order of St Patrick | Privy Counsellors of Ireland | Gray's Inn.



Hamar Greenwood, 1st Viscount Greenwood, PC, KC (7 February 1870 – 10 September 1948), known as Sir Hamar Greenwood, Bt, between 1915 and 1929 and as The Lord Greenwood between 1929 and 1937, was a Canadian-born British lawyer and politician. He served as the last Chief Secretary for Ireland between 1920 and 1922. Both his sons died unmarried rendering the Greenwood viscountcy extinct in 2003.


Thomas Hamar Greenwood, 1st Viscount Greenwood was born on 7 February 1870 in Whitby, Ontario, Canada. He was the son of John Hamar Greenwood (1829-1903), a lawyer who emigrated from Llanbister, Radnorshire in Wales as a youth, and Charlotte Churchill Hubbard, who was from a United Empire Loyalist family that had an ancestor who immigrated to Canada after the American Revolutionary War


He graduated from Toronto University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1895 with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) He was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Law (LL.D.) by Toronto University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1938.

He was admitted to Gray's Inn in 1906 entitled to practise as a barrister.

Military Service

He gained the rank of Lieutenant between 1902 and 1905 in the King Edward's Horse. He gained the rank of Captain between 1905 and 1912. He gained the rank of officer in the Canadian Militia. He gained the rank of Captain in 1913 in the General Reserve Officers. In 1914 he raised and commanded 10th Battalion, South Wales Borderers. He gained the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel in 1914.


He served under David Lloyd George as Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department in 1919, as Additional Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Additional Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade and Secretary for Overseas Trade from 1919 to 1920 and as the last Chief Secretary for Ireland, with a seat in the Cabinet, from 1920 to 1922.

As Chief Secretary he was closely identified with the aggressive use of two specially formed paramilitary forces — the Black and Tans and the Auxiliaries — during the Irish War of Independence. After the burning of the centre of the city of Cork by British auxiliary forces in December 1920 Greenwood blamed the "Sinn Féin rebels" and the people of Cork for burning their own city.

He lost his seat in the 1922 general election. At the 1924 general election, Greenwood was one of a small number of Liberals, including Winston Churchill, to stand as Constitutionalist candidates. These Liberals advocated closer ties between Liberals and Conservatives. Greenwood's candidature in Walthamstow East was supported by the local Conservative association but not by the local Liberals who had their own candidate. After the elections when it appeared that there was no prospect of formal closer ties between the two parties, Greenwood took the Conservative whip. He continued to represent Walthamstow East until 1929 although he never held office again.

He was chairman of the Pilgrims Society from 1945 to 1948, and president of the Pilgrims Society in 1948.


He held the office of Member of Parliament (M.P.) (Liberal) for York between 1906 and 1910.
He held the office of Member of Parliament (M.P.) (Liberal) for Sunderland between 1910 and 1922.
He held the office of Bencher of Gray's Inn in 1917.
He held the office of Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Home Department in 1919. He was appointed King's Counsel (K.C.) in 1919.
He held the office of Parliamentary Secretary, Overseas Trade in 1919.
He held the office of Chief Secretary, Ireland in 1920.
He held the office of Member of Parliament (M.P.) (Conservative) for East Walthamstow between 1924 and 1929.
He held the office of Treasurer of Gray's Inn in 1930.
He was Honorary Treasurer of the Conservative Party between 1933 and 1938.
He was president of the British Iron and Steel Federation between 1938 and 1939. :He was chairman of Dorman, Long & Company, Redpath, Brown and Company, Lewis Berger & Sons, Aerated Brown.


He held the office of Chancellor, Order of St. Patrick between 1920 and 1922.
He was appointed Privy Counsellor (P.C.) on 26 April 1920.
He was appointed Privy Counsellor (P.C.) [Ireland] on 6 May 1920.
He held the office of Justice of the Peace (J.P.) for Middlesex.
He was created 1st Baronet Greenwood, of Llanbister, co. Radnor [U.K.] on 8 February 1915.
Greenwood had been created a Baronet, of Onslow Gardens in the Royal Borough of Kensington, in 1915.
He was created 1st Baron Greenwood, of Llanbister, co. Radnor [U.K.] on 31 August 1929.
He was created 1st Viscount Greenwood, of Holbourne, co. London [U.K.] on 16 February 1937.


He married Margery Spencer, daughter of Reverend Walter Spencer, on 23 May 1911. His wife, Margery, daughter of Walter Spencer of Fownhope Court, Herefordshire, became Viscountess Greenwood. She was knighted as Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 1922. She was the sister of Muriel Forbes-Sempill, second wife of Wilfrid Ashley, 1st Baron Mount Temple.

They had two sons and two daughters. Their elder son, David Henry Hamar Greenwood, succeeded his father as second Viscount. He died unmarried and was succeeded as third Viscount by his younger brother, Michael George Hamar Greenwood, who died unmarried as well, in 2003 rendering the title extinct.

Their elder daughter, Angela Margo Hamar Greenwood, married Edward Dudley Delevingne and is the paternal grandmother of model sisters Poppy and Cara Delevingne. Their younger daughter, Deborah Hamar Greenwood, married Patrick David de László, son of painter Philip de László.


He died on 10 September 1948 at age 78.


More Genealogy Tools

Sponsored Search

Searching for someone else?
First: Last:

No known carriers of Hamar's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests and no close relatives have taken a 23andMe, AncestryDNA, or Family Tree DNA "Family Finder" test.

Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Ancestry DNA.

Images: 1
Hamar Greenwood Image 1
Hamar Greenwood Image 1


Hamar is 32 degrees from Rosa Parks, 22 degrees from Anne Tichborne and 12 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

G  >  Greenwood  >  Thomas Hamar Greenwood PC KC Bt