A member of the prominent Liverpool banking family, Heywood was MP for North Lancashire from 1847.
Heywood a pillar of society, a founding member and first President of the Manchester Athenaeum, a member of Cross Street Chapel and President of Manchester New College from 1853-58.
He resided at 22 Bedford Place, Russell Square, London, in the 1870s. at the time he knew Whistler.
He was a collector of prints, particularly those of Méryon, He wrote the introduction to the Wenceslas Hollar exhibition catalogue for the Burlington Fine Arts Club in 1875 (long after WHistler had ceased to be a member). By 1877 Heywood also had a collection of prints by Whistler, who invited him to his studio to see his recent drypoints (#07552).
Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford; Kelly's London Postal Directory, London 1861, 1874-78; City Diary and Almanach, 1864; Heywood, Charles, A descriptive catalogue of a collection of drawings and etchings by Charles Meryon, formed by Rev. J. J. Heywood, London, 1880; Lugt, Frits, Les marques de collections de dessins et d'estampes: marques estampillèes et écrites de collections particulières et publiques; marques de marchands, de monteurs et d'imprimeurs; etc..., Amsterdam, 1921, nos. 1876, 1277, 1276.