Letters of Charles Grant (1778-1866), Baron Glenelg

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 237 Coll-841
  • Dates of Creation
  • Name of Creator
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      9 letters. Access to records in a fragile condition may be restricted.
  • Location
      Gen. 1801/5/7; Gen. 2040/53-54; Gen. 2040/72-73

Scope and Content

The material is composed of: letter from Charles Grant at Russell Square, 1807, to the Rt. Hon. Robert Dundas seeking his help in obtaining the post of District Paymaster in the County of Inverness; letter from Grant in London, 1819, to Hay presumably at the Admiralty seeking help for a constituent; undated letters (2) from Glenelg to Lyall and to James Colquhoun; and, letters (5) of Glenelg, 1831-1856.

Administrative / Biographical History

Charles Grant was born on 26 October 1778 at Kidderpore in Bengal. He was the son of the statesman and philanthropist Charles Grant (1746-1823) who had been Chairman of the East India Company in 1805, and was the brother of Sir Robert Grant (1779-1838), Governor of Bombay. Both the younger Grants were educated at Magdalene College, Cambridge. Charles was called to the Bar at Lincoln's Inn, 1807, but he did not practise. He became MP for the Inverness and Fortrose Burghs from 1811 to 1818, and from 1818 he represented Inverness County until 1835 when he became a Peer. He distinguished himself in the Commons first in support of Lord Castlereagh's Preservation of Public Peace Bill in 1812, and also in his support of the East India Company. In 1813 he became a Lord of the Treasury in Lord Liverpool's administration. In 1819 he was Chief Secretary for Ireland, and then in 1827 he was President of the Board of Trade in Canning's government. He also served under Earl Grey and Lord Melbourne. Under Melbourne, in 1835, he was made Colonial Secretary, but his policies were sharply criticised and in 1839 he resigned. On his elevation to the House of Lords in 1835, Grant had taken the title Baron Glenelg, the name of his estate in Scotland. Charles Grant, Baron Glenelg, died in Cannes on 23 April 1866

Access Information

Generally open for consultation to bona fide researchers, but please contact repository for details in advance.

Acquisition Information

Letters at Gen. 1801/5/7, acquired January 1970, Accession no. E70.3.


The biographical/administrative history was compiled using the following material: (1) Stephen, Leslie. and Lee, Sidney (eds.). Dictionary of national biography. Vol. 8. Glover-Harriott. London: Smith, Elder and Co., 1908.

Compiled by Graeme D Eddie, Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections Division.

Other Finding Aids

Important finding aids generally are: the alphabetical Index to Manuscripts held at Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections and Archives, consisting of typed slips in sheaf binders and to which additions were made until 1987; and the Index to Accessions Since 1987.


Check the local Indexes for details of any additions.

Related Material

The local Indexes show various references to Grant related material (check the Indexes for more details): letter to Messrs. Gurney and Hudson regretting he will not be able to attend a meeting of the Westminster Auxiliary Bible Society, 1823, at La.II.647/181; letter to an unnamed correspondent addressed as 'Lord', 1834, at La.II.423/131; franked postal covers addressed to Mrs. Haven, 1829, and to T. B. Bingley, at Dk.6.19/3; and, letter of G. Grey to J. Cochrane informing him that 'there is no situation vacant in the department over which Lord Glenelg presides', 1837, at La.II.647/184.

At Gen. 2040/69 there is a letter of Robert Grant at Russell Square.

In addition, the UK National Register of Archives (NRA), updated by the Historical Manuscripts Commission, notes several locations of Grant related material.