Russell, John, 1st Earl Russell, 1792-1878

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Russell, John, 1st Earl Russell, 1792-1878

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RUSSELL, JOHN, 1ST EARL RUSSELL, third son of John Russell, 6th Duke of Bedford (qv), and his first wife; b. 18 Aug 1792; adm. 23 Sep 1803 (G); fag to his brother Lord Tavistock; kept a diary while at the School, including a list of the School for Oct 1803; left Bartholomewtide 1804; Edinburgh Univ. 1809-12; MP Tavistock 4 May 1813 – Mar 1817, 1818-20, Huntingdonshire 1820-6, Bandon Bridge 19 Dec 1826-30, Tavistock 24 Nov 1830-1, Devon 1831-2, South Devon 1832 – Apr 1835, Stroud 29 May 1835-41, City of London 1841- 30 Jul 1861; made his first speech in favour of parliamentary reform 14 Dec 1819; successfully moved repeal of the Test and Corporation Acts 26 Feb 1828; Privy Councillor 22 Nov 1830; Paymaster-Gen. of the Forces 13 Dec 1830 – Nov 1834, also member of Cabinet Jun 1831 – Nov 1834; moved first reading of Reform Bill 31 Mar 1831; introduced Reform Bill for second time 24 Jun 1831, and for third time 12 Dec 1831; advocated reform of the Irish Church 1833-4; leader of Whigs in House of Commons Apr 1835 onwards; Secretary of State for Home Affairs 18 Apr 1835 – Aug 1839; carried through the Municipal Corporations Bill, and diminished the number of offences liable to capital punishment; Secretary for War and the Colonies 30 Aug 1839 – Aug 1841; declared for total repeal of the Corn Laws in his Edinburgh Letter of 22 Nov 1845, and supported their repeal by Peel in 1846; Prime Minister and First Lord of the Treasury 6 Jul 1846 – Feb 1852; carried the bill for removing Jewish disabilities through the House of Commons 1848, and responsible for the Ecclesiastical Titles Bill of 1851; Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in Aberdeen ministry Dec 1852 – Feb 1853, when he resigned but remained in Cabinet without office and continued to lead the House of Commons; Lord President of the Council 12 Jun 1854 – Jan 1855, resigning because of his dissatisfaction with the conduct of the Crimean War; Plenipotentiary to Vienna Congress 11 Feb 1855; Secretary of State for the Colonies 1 May – 13 Jul 1855; opposed Disraeli’s Reform Bill of 1859; Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs 18 Jun 1859 – Nov 1865; the Reform Bill introduced by him on 1 Mar 1860 was subsequently dropped; created Earl Russell 30 Jul 1861; KG 21 May 1862; Prime Minister and First Lord of the Treasury 6 Nov 1865 – 18 Jun 1866, resigning on defeat of his Government’s Reform Bill by the ‘Adullamites”; declined Cabinet office in Gladstone’s administration formed in Dec 1868; received freedom City of London 9 Jul 1831; LLD Edinburgh Univ. 8 Nov 1845; FRS 6 May 1847; Lord Rector, Aberdeen Univ., from 1863; GCMG 25 Mar 1869; Busby Trustee 2 Jun 1863; a sincere and able Whig with the courage of his opinions, and a store of constitutional and historical knowledge; although no orator, a skilful debater and creator of telling phrases; edited Letters of the Fourth Duke of Bedford, 1842-6; author, Essay on the English Constitution, and other works; m. 1st, 11 Apr 1835 Adelaide, widow of Thomas Lister, 2nd Baron Ribblesdale (qv), and half-sister of Thomas Henry Lister (qv); m. 2nd, 20 Jul 1841 Lady Frances Anna Maria Elliot, second dau. of Gilbert Elliot, 2nd Earl of Minto; d. 28 May 1878. DNB.


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Russell, John, 1766-1839 (1766-1839)

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Russell, John, 1766-1839

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Russell, John, 1st Earl Russell, 1792-1878

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Lister, Thomas Henry, 1800-1842 (1800-1842)

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Lister, Thomas Henry, 1800-1842

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Russell, John, 1st Earl Russell, 1792-1878

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GB 2014

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International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families - ISAAR(CPF) 2nd edition



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Prepared for import into AtoM by Westminster School Archive staff, 2019-2020




Users should note that the information recorded here that is not to be found in the first two volumes of the Record of Old Westminsters and its first Supplement has been assembled from various published and manuscript sources by Hugh Edmund Pagan MA FSA, and all new resulting text is his copyright, © 2014.

The Record of Old Westminsters: A biographical list of all those who are known to have been educated at Westminster School from the earliest times to 1927, Volumes 1 & 2, compiled by G. F. Russell Barker and Alan H. Stenning, London, 1928.

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