- Also known as
Capt Felix Jones
primary name: Jones, James Felix
- individual; official; military/naval; British; Male
- Life dates
- Employee of the East India Company [EIC]; first served as a midshipman on the survey ship “Palinurus” commanded by Captain Stafford Bettesworth Haines (1802-1860), who is best known for securing Aden on behalf of the EIC. Later employed in the survey of Ceylon and the Gulf of Mannar, under Lieutenant Powell, and in 1840-41 joined Lieutenant C. D. Campbell and then Captain Lynch in surveying the Euphrates route to the Mediterranean. Succeeded Lynch in 1843 and continued this work for several years, also involved with Major Henry Rawlinson in gathering information on the Persian/Ottoman border in 1844. Promoted Commander, 13 September 1847, he conducted important archaeological surveys of parts of Mesopotamia, including the course of the ancient Nahrwan Canal (1848), the course of the Tigris and what he believed to be the site of Opis (1850), the Assyrian heartland (1852) and the Baghdad area (1853). Named political agent at Baghdad and consul-general in Turkish Arabia (1854), later political agent in the Persian Gulf (1855) when he initiated excavations at the site of Liyan on the Bushehr peninsula, but these were abandoned following the outbreak of war according to a letter sent by W.F. Prideaux (q.v.) (ME Corres: 14 May 1876). Ill health compelled him to later return to England. His later career was spent carrying out geographical work for the India Office, and in 1875 he completed a beautifully drawn map, in four sheets, of western Asia, including the valleys of the Tigris and Euphrates; it remains in manuscript in the India Office collections. FRGS (1864), he served on the Royal Geographical Society council, and was a valued contributor to the ‘Geographical Magazine’ and a member of the Geographical Club. Married to Sophie Takoor with children. He died at his home, Fernside, Church Road, Upper Norwood, Surrey, on 3 September 1878. The Geographical Magazine obituary called him “one of the greatest ornaments of the old Indian navy” (‘Geographical Magazine’, 1878).
The most important of his numerous memoirs are included in ‘Selections from the Records of the Bombay Government’ (1857, new ser., 43).
Coins from the collection of Capt. Jones were purchased through his agent W.J. Stirling (q.v.) in 1854.