Doyley, Edward (DNB01)
DOYLEY or DOYLY, EDWARD (1617–1675), governor of Jamaica, born in 1617, was the second son of John Doyley of Albourne, Wiltshire, by his wife Lucy, daughter of Robert Nicholas. His family was an offshoot of the Doylys of Chiselhampton (Bayly, House of Doyly, pp. 46, 47). In one of his letters Doyley describes himself as educated at one of the Inns of Court, and 'of no inconsiderable family, but persecuted these many years on account of religion' (Thurloe Papers, v. 138). He fought for the parliament during the civil war, first in Wiltshire, and afterwards in Ireland, obtaining a grant of Irish lands as a reward for his services (ib.; Ludlow, Memoirs, i. 117, ed. 1894; Lansdowne MSS. 821, f. 84). In December 1654 Doyley sailed with the expedition to the West Indies, holding the rank of lieutenant-colonel in the regiment of General Robert Venables [q. v.] At Barbados, in March 1655, Venables gave him the colonelcy of a regiment raised in that island. On the death of Major-general Richard Fortescue [q. v. Suppl.] in November 1655 Doyley was chosen by the Protector's commissioners at Jamaica commander-in-chief of the forces there (Thurloe, iv. 153, 390). In May 1656 he was superseded by Robert Sedgwick [q. v. Suppl.], but Sedgwick died almost immediately, and Doyley then petitioned the Protector to be permanently appointed (ib. v. 12, 138). Cromwell, however, appointed William Brayne [q. v. Suppl.], who arrived in Jamaica in December 1656; thus Doyley was a second time superseded. Brayne died in September 1657, and then the command permanently devolved upon Doyley (ib. v. 668, 770, vi. 512).
He made a very efficient governor, and though he has been accused of neglecting or discouraging planting, the charge appears to be unjust. In one of his letters he boasts that by 1657 the English settlers had a larger part of the island under cultivation than ever the Spaniards had (Mercvrius Politicus, 10-17 Sept. 1657). But his claim to distinction mainly rests on his successful defence of Jamaica against all Spanish attempts to reconquer it. During 1657 and 1658 several bodies of Spaniards landed from Cuba. Thelargest, consisting of about twelve hundred men under Don Christopher Sasi Arnoldo, was defeated by Doyley in June 1658, their fort stormed, three hundred killed, and about one hundred more, with many officers and flags, captured (Thurloe, vi. 540, 833, vii. 260; Present State of Jamaica, 1683, pp. 35, 38). Doyley also carried the war into the enemy's quarters, and sent expeditions, which burnt several Spanish towns on the mainland, and brought much plunder back to Jamaica (ib. p. 35; Cal. State Papers, Colonial, Addenda, pp. 125, 127). At the restoration of Charles II Doyley was confirmed in his post as governor, but in August 1661 he was superseded by Thomas, lord Windsor, afterwards first earl of Plymouth [q. v.] (Cal. State Papers, Colonial, 1661-8, pp. 6, 50). He returned to England, lived chiefly in London at St. Martin's-in-the-Fields, and died about March 1675 (Bayley, p. 47).
[Cal. State Papers, Colonial; Thurloe State Papers; Firth's Narrative of General Venables, 1900; Bayly's House of Doyly; Doyley's Orderbook and other papers, Addit. MSS. 12410, 12411, 12423.]