Papers of George Harry Grey (1737-1819), 5th Earl of Stamford

Scope and Content

There are references to George Harry Grey (1737-1819), 5th Earl of Stamford, among the papers of his son George Harry Grey (1765-1845), Lord Grey, later 6th Earl of Stamford, in particular: a printed order issued by the 5th Earl of Stamford for the embodiment of the militia, 1793 (EGR4/2/2/1/5); a letter from the 5th Earl to his son re the militia, 1804 (EGR4/2/2/1/11); correspondence re the control of blasphemous and seditious pamphlets, 1817 (EGR4/2/3/1/1-4); letters from Hugo Worthington to the 5th Earl re Bowdon parish church, 1812 (EGR4/2/8/1/2-3); a draft letter re Ashton under Lyne Sunday school, 1817 (EGR4/2/8/5/1); letters from the 5th Earl to his son re a joint bond, 1804 (EGR4/2/10/1/1-2); a note from the 5th Earl to his son re bonds, 1808 (EGR4/2/10/1/3); correspondence re a claim to the Barony of Delamer, 1810 (EGR4/2/10/1/4-7); a draft letter re a county meeting, 1817 (EGR4/2/10/8).

There are numerous references to the 5th Earl of Stamford in other subfonds of the Dunham Massey Papers. Within EGR1, Title Deeds and Settlements, there are legacies to him in the wills of his grandfather George Booth (1675-1758), 2nd Earl of Warrington, and of his mother Mary Countess of Stamford, and his appointment as his mother's executor (EGR1/8/12/3-4). Within EGR3, Papers of the Booth Family, there are the following: an account of his character in 1745 (EGR3/6/2/2/3); references in an inventory of plate to gifts of gold and silverware from George Booth (1675-1758), 2nd Earl of Warrington (EGR3/6/2/11); an account with his mother Mary Countess of Stamford (EGR3/7/1/2); an annuity to him from his father (EGR3/7/1/4/26); accounts of his income (EGR3/7/1/4/26-27); notes on the settlement made upon his marriage to Henrietta Cavendish-Bentinck (EGR3/7/1/6/4); and papers relating to his marriage (EGR3/7/3/7-8).

Within subfonds EGR8, Records relating to Thomas Walton's Bequest, there are many references to him in a bundle of financial papers relating to the executorship of Thomas Walton (EGR8/1/6), and information on donations by him to Seamon's Moss School (EGR8/3/2/5-6). Within subfonds EGR11, Papers from Dunham Massey Hall relating to the Cheshire and Lancashire Estates, there are bundles of vouchers for the general account of Hugo Worthington with the 5th Earl of Stamford, 1817-19 (EGR11/2/5-8). These include accounts for donations by Lord Stamford to charities, hospitals and schools, payments of annuities from him, the expenses of his funeral, and payments of legacies and gratuities to his servants after his death. Among the miscellaneous papers from Dunham Massey Hall is a letter from Lord Stamford to General Peter Heron concerning militia business, 1805 (EGR13/24/1).

Administrative / Biographical History

George Harry Grey, eldest son of Harry Grey, 4th Earl of Stamford, was born on 1 October 1737 and baptized on 21 October at Newtown Linford co. Leics. He was educated at Leicester School and Queen's College, Cambridge, matriculating in 1755. In 1760 he went on the Grand Tour of Europe in the company of Sir Henry Mainwaring. Among the pictures he brought back from Italy were a portrait by Mengs and two caricatures by Thomas Patch, now at Dunham Massey Hall. Grey held the following offices and privileges: Page of Honour at the Coronation of George III, 1761; MP for Staffordshire, 1761-68; deputy lieutenant in Staffordshire, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire; Lieutenant Colonel and (from 1764 to 1789) Colonel of the Royal Regiment of Cheshire Militia; Lord Lieutenant and Custos Rotulorum of Cheshire from May 1783 until his death in 1819; Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries; President of the Royal Humane Society.

Between 1739 and 1768 George Harry Grey was styled Lord Grey. He succeeded as the 5th Earl of Stamford at his father's death on 30 May 1768. On 22 April 1796 he was created Baron Delamer of Dunham Massey and Earl of Warrington.

George Harry Grey married on 28 May 1763 Henrietta Cavendish-Bentinck, daughter of William Bentinck, 2nd Duke of Portland, and Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Portland. He died at Enville Hall on 23 May 1819, aged 81 after prolonged illness [see EGR4/1/8/15 for evidence of his infirmity in 1818]. His widow died on 4 June 1827, aged 90. Sources: G.E.C., Complete peerage, vol. 12, pt. I, pp. 224-5; James E. Doyle, The official baronage of England (London: Longmans, Green, 1886), vol. 3, p. 401.

The archives of the 5th Earl of Stamford have survived in considerable quantities. There is a large amount of material relating to the Earl's official functions as Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire and other County business, to estate and financial matters, and to the Earl's involvement in local affairs, charities and churches. Unfortunately very little personal or family correspondence has survived (but see Related Materials below for letters to the Duke of Portland held elsewhere). The papers of the 5th Earl of Stamford contain the following series:

  • EGR4/1/1: Patents and Commissions, 1783-1796
  • EGR4/1/2: Papers relating to the Lord Lieutenancy and Militia, 1759, 1794-1808
  • EGR4/1/3: Papers relating to the Commission of the Peace, 1784-c.1819
  • EGR4/1/4: Acts of Parliament, 1764-1805
  • EGR4/1/5: Political and Electoral Papers, 1774-1812
  • EGR4/1/6: Financial Papers, 1764-1817
  • EGR4/1/7: Papers relating to the Executorship of Dorothy Wrighte, 1765-1790
  • EGR4/1/8: Estate Papers, 1773-1818
  • EGR4/1/9: Papers relating to Churches, Chapels and Benefices, 1776-1816, 1827
  • EGR4/1/10: Papers relating to Charities and Local Affairs, 1772-1819
  • EGR4/1/11: Personal and Family Papers, 1767-1815
  • EGR4/1/12: Miscellaneous Papers, 1758-1819

Related Material

University of Nottingham: Portland Collection, correspondence and papers of William Henry Cavendish Cavendish-Bentinck (1738-1809), 3rd Duke of Portland, and of Dorothy, Duchess of Portland: Pw F 4423-4492, 70 letters from George Harry Grey (1737-1819), 5th Earl of Stamford, to the 3rd Duke of Portland, 1762-95; Pw F 4497-4638, 142 letters from Henrietta Cavendish Grey, Countess of Stamford, to the 3rd Duke of Portland, 1760-81.

Manchester City Archives: MISC/214/1-6: six letters from George Harry Grey (1737-1819), 5th Earl of Stamford, and the Countess of Stamford, to Mr [John] Hope and others, concerning alterations to Dunham Massey Hall, a gift of turtles, and the supply of fish from Liverpool, 1774-89 [see EGR7].