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Is James Boswell related to....?


Boswell's Circus

The first Boswell's Circus was founded in 1882 by James Clements Boswell, the son of the clown and artist James Boswell (1826-1859). It closed in 1898. J. C. Boswell had five sons who were all artists, and the circus was revived in 1912 as Boswell's Royal Hippodrome and Circus Company. It later became known as Boswell Brother's Circus and Menagerie, and later again as just Boswell's Circus. The artist family of Boswell is not close, if at all, related to the biographer James Boswell (1740-1795). You can read more about the circus and it's history here.

Eve Boswell

Pop singer Eve Boswell was born Eva Keleti in Budapest, Hungary in 1924. In 1939 she joined Boswell's circus (see above) as an artist. She fell in love with Trevor McIntosh, step-son to one of the owners of the circus, whom she later married. He also taught her English and suggested she change her name to Eve Boswell, after the circus. As is the case with the Boswell family who founded the circus, Eve Keleti Boswell is obviously not related to James Boswell, the biographer. You can read the story of her life in an obituary here.

The Boswell sisters

The Boswell sisters (the Bozzies) was a popular US harmony singing group active in the 1920s and 30s. It consisted of sisters Martha Boswell (1905-1958), Connie Boswell (1907-1976) and Helvetia Boswell (1911-1988), daughters of Alfred Clyde Boswell (1877-1944) and Meldania Foore (1870-1947). According to army records, A. C. Boswell was born in the US in 1877, and there appears to be no immediate connection between him (or his daughters) and James Boswell, the biographer. Read more about there Boswell Sisters here.

Leonard Boswell

US Congressman Leonard Boswell was born 1934 in Missouri, the son of Melvin and Margaret Boswell. There is no apparent link to Boswell the biographer.

James Boswell (1906-1971)

The painter James Boswell (1906-1971) was born in New Zealand, the son of Scottish born schoolmaster Edward Blair Buchanan Boswell (1860-1933) and Ida Fair.  Edward B. B. Boswell was born in Lanarkshire, son of James Boswell, who was born in Ormiston, East Lothian about 1832. James was the son of the caster Alexander Boswell and his wife Jane. Alexander's father seems to have been a James Boswell born ca. 1781. While the names James and Alexander run in both the family of the biographer and of the painter, there is no evidence of any family relationship between the two.

Who, then, is related to James Boswell?

If you want to know who actually IS related to James Boswell, you can visit our sister-site There you can see charts of Boswell's ancestors and descendants and you can even have the system compute how Boswell is related to any other person in the database, such as King Edward III of England or Boswell's friend and mentor, the 10th Earl of Eglinton