Isaac Ewer, d.c.1651

Army colonel who sat on the High Court of Justice and signed the King's death warrant. He died on Cromwell's Irish campaign.

Probably born in Essex, Isaac Ewer married Joan Thurloe, sister of John Thurloe, in 1633 and was registered as a surveyor of highways in 1636. Ewer enlisted for Parliament after the outbreak of the First Civil War; he was a captain of horse in 1643 and a major of dragoons in the Eastern Association by 1645. He transferred to the New Model Army in April 1645 as lieutenant-colonel in Robert Hammond's regiment of foot, and succeeded Hammond as colonel in October 1647.

During the Second Civil War, Ewer's regiment marched with Cromwell to suppress the Royalist uprising in South Wales. Ewer successfully besieged Chepstow Castle during the campaign against Pembroke. He was then ordered to join Fairfax in Essex at the siege of Colchester.

In November 1648, Ewer headed the deputation of officers that presented the Army Remonstrance to Parliament, after which he was sent to relieve his former commander Colonel Hammond of his charge of King Charles, who was a prisoner at Carisbrooke Castle. Ewer was then ordered to remove the King to Hurst Castle on the way to his trial. Ewer was one of the Army officers appointed to the High Court of Justice and was a signatory of the King's death warrant.

In 1649, Ewer's regiment was one of those selected by lot to serve on Cromwell's expedition to Ireland where it played a decisive role in the storming of Drogheda on 11 September. In 1650, Ewer was with Cromwell at the capture of Kilkenny in March and Clonmel in May. He remained in Ireland after Cromwell's departure and served under Ireton at the capture of Waterford in August 1650. Ewer died of plague either in late 1650 or early 1651 and was buried at Waterford.


A.J. Hopper, Isaac Ewer, Oxford DNB, 2004