Papers of the Gordon family

Scope and Content

Papers for the Gordon and Leith families, late 18th century- 1953; papers of General Sir James Willoughby Gordon, including military material, together with a microfilm of further papers in private possession; papers relating to the marriage settlement of Lady Mary Ashburnham and Henry Percy Gordon, 1839, together with subsequent trust papers, wills and estate material, 1853-1953; plans for a garden at Northcourt, Isle of Wight, together with letters and list of flowers and plants; photograph albums, concert programmes and other memorabilia collected by Mildred Katherine Leith, late 19th century-early 20th century. Watercolours by Lady Julia Gordon, including paintings of the houses 'The Orchard' and Northcourt.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Gordon and Leith families were the family of General Sir James Willoughby Gordon, 1st Bart. (1773-1851): he married in 1805 Isabella Julia Lavina Bennet, a pupil of Turner, who subsequently studied under David Cox and probably Thomas Girtin. They had two children, Henry Percy, later 2nd Bart., and Julia Emily. Henry Percy Gordon married in 1839 Lady Mary Agnes Blanche Ashburnham, daughter of the third Earl of Ashburnham. They had one child, Mary Charlotte Julia, who in 1865 married Lieutenant Colonel [later General] Robert William Disney Leith. Their eldest son, Alexander Henry, succeeded to the title of Lord Burgh. He married twice: by his first wife, Mildred Katherine Nicholson, he had a daughter, Mildred Katherine, and by his second wife, Phyllis Goldie, two sons and another daughter.

Access Information

The Special Collections Division is available for anyone to use, regardless of whether you are attached to an academic institution. Access to the Archives and Manuscripts and Rare Books reading room, however, is by prior appointment to access the manuscript material. See our website for more details.