Historical Manuscripts Commission

Summary report on correspondence and papers 1768-1854


Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole (1772-1842),
general and colonial governor

in private possession

(reference: GB-800819-Cole)

I Hart, April 1996
Historical Manuscripts Commission

Table of Contents




Summary report


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The papers described in the following report are the property of the Rt Hon Lord Kingsdown KG. Requests to consult them should, in the first instance, be addressed to the Secretary, the Historical Manuscripts.


The papers listed below passed to the family of Lord Kingsdown after the death of Miss Mabel Lowry Cole in 1952. Miss Lowry Cole was the younger sister of Lord Kingsdown's maternal grandmother, Florence Payne-Gallwey. These papers complement a collection presented to the Public Record Office by Miss Lowry Cole in 1936-38 (PRO 30/43), a list of which can be consulted in the Commission's search room (NRA 8661), and in the List and Index Society Volume 11. A summary of the collection also appears in the Appendix to this list.

As with the PRO material, this collection consists of the letters and papers of Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole (1772-1842), and relates in particular to his service in the Peninsular War as commander of the 4th Division (1809-15). The collection also contains letters and papers of Lady Frances Cole, wife of Sir Galbraith, of her parents James Harris 1st Earl of Malmesbury and of Harriet Mary his wife, of her aunt Mrs Katherine Gertrude Robinson (neé Harris), of her sister Catherine Gertrude (afterwards Lady Catherine Bell), and of her friend Miss Elizabeth Cozens. In addition, Box 2 contains a number of social letters from the Duke of Wellington to the future wife of Arthur Lowry Cole, Elizabeth Francis Hatton, and to her mother, Harriet, daughter of David La Touche.

The papers are kept in a small metal deed box (Box 1) and a small wooden writing box (Box 2). They were listed by the Commission in 1996 when numbers were assigned to individual bundles and volumes.

A further small group of Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole's military papers is in the National Army Museum (6807/397).

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GLC Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole

FC Lady Frances Cole (neé Harris), wife of Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole

FMGC Florence Mary Georgiana Cole, daughter of Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole

ALC Arthur Lowry Cole, eldest son of Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole

AWGL Arthur Willoughby George Lowry Cole, son of Arthur Lowry Cole

MHLC Mabel Henrietta Lowry Cole, daughter of Arthur Lowry Cole

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Summary report

Box 1

Correspondence and papers of Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole

1. Peninsular War letters 27 January-23 September 1810 (48 items) and associated correspondence 1810-15 (4 items) as follows:
James Bathurst to GLC (1 item)
Lt-General Sir Alexander Campbell to GLC (1 item)
GLC to the Duke of Wellington (2 items)
Lt-General Sir Stapleton Cotton to GLC (1 item)
Lt-General Rowland Hill to GLC (1 item)
Sir William Myers to GLC (1 item)
Fitzroy Somerset to GLC (1 item, and a post script on one of Wellington's letters)
The Duke of Wellington to GLC (38 items, of which only four appear in Gurwood's The Dispatches of the Duke of Wellington)
Copies of letters from Wellington to Campbell and Hill (2 items)
Letter from Lord Enniskillen to GLC 1810, copy of letter from GLC to William Beresford nd, copy of letter from GLC to Wellington relating to his command after Napoleon's escape from Elba 1815, and Wellington's reply (4 items).

2. Peninsular War correspondence and papers 1812 (115 items), including orders for troop movements, letters by GLC, and letters to Lord Enniskillen from Alexander de Roverea, GLC's Swiss aide-de-camp.

3. Correspondence 1806-23, mainly relating to the Peninsular War (18 items), including a letter from GLC to William Beresford, Marshal in the Portuguese army, 14 October 1810 and letters from GLC to the 2nd Earl of Enniskillen, his elder brother.

4. Extracts of letters by GLC 1812-25, copied by FMGC and stitched into an uncovered volume.

5. Printed material relating to GLC's time as Governor of Mauritius 1825-28 (3 items).

6. Papers relating to fees payable when GLC was installed as GCB 1821 (3 items).

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Correspondence and papers of Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole's immediate family

7. Letters to Miss Elizabeth Cozens from FC and her family 1800-22 (65 items).

8. Journal of tour of Scotland 1802, possibly written by FC.

9. Journal by FC 1810.


Other family correspondence and papers

10. Collected correspondence and miscellaneous papers 1768-95, mainly relating to European affairs (20 items), including letters (2) to Charles Yorke from the King of Poland 1768, a copy of James Harris's speech in the House of Commons proposing the purchase Sir William Hamilton's antiquities 2 March 1772, and a report of General O'Hara's observations whilst being transported through Revolutionary France 1795.

11. Letter of introduction from Charles Yorke to the King of Poland on behalf of James Harris 1767; anecdote relating to the death of Duke of Monmouth written down in 1809; anonymous account of the Decembrist uprising in St Petersburg 1825; newspaper cutting relating to the death of the 3rd Earl of Enniskillen 1886.

12. Family correspondence and papers 1792-1817 (8 items), including a letter from Lady Malmesbury to Lady Palmerston written in Berne 7 July 1792 [this is wrongly attributed by FMGC to her mother, FC], letters (4) to Lady Malmesbury's daughters 1812-17, Lady Catherine Harris's account of a visit to the Princess of Wales at Blackheath 1807, and a MS rhyme entitled 'Key to Mrs Gunning's Pamphlet in imitation of Hey this, what's that?'.

13. Account of another visit to the Princess of Wales at Blackheath January 1807.

14. Letters from Lady Malmesbury in Italy to Lady Palmerston 1792 (6 items).

15. Letters to Lady Malmesbury and Mrs Robinson 1812-17, mainly relating to social affairs (44 items), including a letter to Mrs Robinson from St Petersburg reporting the Battle of Borodino September 1812, with an acknowledgement from The Times to MHLC regretting that the editor was unable to print it December 1941.

16. Miscellaneous correspondence and papers 1784-1854 (16 items), including letters from the Earl of Chatham, Lord Malmesbury, Mary, Duchess of Gloucester, Robert Peel (2 items), William Pitt, and an estimate of expenses of coach and horses for use by Princess Charlotte for one year (after 1793). Also newspaper cuttings relating to the death of GLC (3 items).

17. Miscellaneous items 19th-20th century, including typescripts of Lady Malmesbury's diary of a stay in Paris August 1815, commissions of ALC and AWGLC and notes relating to previous occasions when the contents of the box had been examined.

18. Advice and Admonition Suggested to the Middle-Aged in Rural and Humble Life: originally addressed to the inhabitants of a village in the West of England (London, 1804) - with MS additions to the text by a Mr Batt.

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Box 2

Letters from the Duke of Wellington

1. Letters from Wellington to GLC 1836-41 (8 items), including dinner invitations.

2. Letters 1834-47 (14 items), comprising twelve from the Duke of Wellington to FC 1834-46, including invitations to social engagements and a letter of condolence on the death of GLC, a letter from Mr Wellesley to FC on behalf of Wellington and a letter from Wellington to ALC on the death of FC 1847.

3-9. Letters from Wellington to Mrs Hatton 1850-52 (68 items): 8 without envelopes, 52 in envelopes addressed to Mrs Hatton and 8 in envelopes addressed to Miss Fanny Hatton.

10. Empty envelopes addressed to Mrs Hatton in Wellington's hand (8 items).

11-13. Letters from Wellington to Miss Fanny Hatton 1850-52 (36 items): 16 without envelopes, 6 in envelopes addressed to Miss Fanny Hatton and 14 in envelopes addressed to Mrs Hatton.

14. Empty envelopes addressed to Miss Fanny Hatton in Wellington's hand (19 items); one envelope contains 2 soldi stamp from Tuscany.

15. Letter from Wellington to Lady Cecilia La Touche 1848.


16. Miscellaneous letters and papers 1813-65 (9 items), including a letter from GLC to Lord Enniskillen 1813, a letter from Maynard Gomm, Governor of Mauritius, to FC 1843, an invitation by AB Coutts to attend Royal Italian Opera at Covent Garden 1851, a copy of Harriet Hatton's will 1865 and a poem entitled 'The Wellington Alphabet'.

17. Miscellaneous printed items (9), including: invitations with MS additions to balls at Apsley House (2), admission tickets for 'Works of Ancient Masters', British Institute 1852 (4), the Order of Proceeding for Wellington's funeral 1852, a typescript copy of the Countess of Malmesbury's diary of events in Paris after Waterloo and a pocket map of the Cape of Good Hope.

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The following papers were presented by Miss Mabel Lowry Cole to the Public Record Office 1936-38 (PRO 30/43):

Sir Galbraith Lowry Cole: correspondence, letter books and papers relating to his military career 1787-1817 (30 pieces); correspondence and papers as Governor of Mauritius 1822-28 (12 pieces); correspondence and papers as Governor of Cape Colony 1826-33 (5 pieces); personal correspondence and papers 1804-42 (11 pieces)

Lady Frances Cole (née Harris): correspondence, journals and papers 1787-1843 (15 pieces)

Katherine Gertrude Robinson (née Harris), elder sister of the 1st Earl of Malmesbury: correspondence, travel journals and papers 1766-1830 (25 pieces)

Louise Margaret Harris, younger sister of the 1st Earl of Malmesbury: correspondence and papers 1788-1817 (2 pieces)

James Harris, 1st Earl of Malmesbury: correspondence and family memoirs 1784-1817 (2 pieces)

Harriet Mary Harris (née Amyand), wife of the 1st Earl of Malmesbury: correspondence and travel journals 1781-1829 (13 pieces)

Lady Catherine Gertrude Bell (née Harris), elder daughter of the Earl and Countess of Malmesbury: commonplace book 1792-1805 (1 piece)

Miss Elizabeth Cozens: correspondence and journal 1823-33 (2 pieces)

Miscellanea 1752-1827 (4 pieces).

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