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Gower, Sutherland-Leveson- family, Dukes of Sutherland

This page summarises records created by this Family

The summary includes a brief description of the collection(s) (usually including the covering dates of the collection), the name of the archive where they are held, and reference information to help you find the collection.

Date: 1100-2000
History:

The wool merchant James Leveson (d. 1549) acquired the monastic estates of Trentham Priory (Staffordshire) and Lilleshall Abbey (Shropshire) between 1537 and 1543 as well as other property in Staffordshire (such as Wolverhampton, from the Duke of Norfolk, in 1531, and Penn and Rowley Somery c.1540) and Shropshire (including Leegomery, from the Audley family, c.1528, and Sheriff Hales, from the Earl of Oxford, in 1546). Walter Leveson bought a moiety of Newport (Shropshire) in 1579. On the death of Sir Richard Leveson of Trentham in 1605, these estates came to Sir Richard Leveson of Halling (Kent) (d. 1661), a descendant of James Leveson’s brother Nicholas Leveson (d. 1539), who had purchased Halling and acquired an Essex estate (Black Notley) by marriage. Sir Richard Leveson alienated the Kent and Essex estates between 1627 and 1650, and on his death in 1661 his Trentham and Lilleshall estates were inherited by Sir William Leveson-Gower (d. 1691), youngest son of his niece Frances Leveson by Sir Thomas Gower, 2nd Bt, of Stittenham (Yorkshire, North Riding). In 1689, on the death of his nephew the 3rd Bt, Leveson-Gower succeeded to the baronetcy and to Stittenham, which had been owned by the Gower family since the 12th century. His son was created Baron Gower in 1703 and his grandson Earl Gower in 1746.

Through the marriage of the 4th Bt to Lady Jane Granville, aunt and co-heir in her issue of the 3rd Granville Earl of Bath (d. 1711), the 1st Earl Gower inherited a portion of the Granville estates in Devon and Cornwall and a reversionary interest in the estates (including Grindon, Staffordshire) of Elizabeth, 2nd Duchess of Albemarle, who died in 1734 (see Montagu-Douglas-Scott, Dukes of Buccleuch). This inheritance seems, however, to have been largely disposed of by 1760.

George Granville Leveson-Gower (1758-1833) succeeded his father as 2nd Marquess of Stafford (so created 1786) in 1803 and was raised to the dukedom of Sutherland in 1833. He married in 1785 Elizabeth Gordon, in her own right Countess of Sutherland, daughter of the 18th Earl of Sutherland by Mary, daughter and co-heir of William Maxwell of Preston (Kirkcudbrightshire). The Earls of Sutherland were established in Sutherland in the 13th century and by the 16th century owned extensive property in the east of the county, centred on Dunrobin, including Golspie, Dornoch, Brora and Helmsdale. Aboyne (Aberdeenshire) came through the marriage of Elizabeth, sister of the 9th Earl (d. 1514), to Adam Gordon but was exchanged with the Earl of Huntly for Strathnaver (Sutherland). The Sutherland estate was extended by the purchase of Skelbo in 1787, the property of the Gordon family of Carrol (Gordonbush, etc) in 1812, Armadale and Strathy in 1813, and the West Sutherland lands of the Barons Reay (Tongue, etc) in 1829.

On the death of his uncle the 3rd Duke of Bridgewater in 1803, the 1st Duke of Sutherland inherited the Bridgewater estates in Northamptonshire and Lancashire, together with the canal property and Bridgewater House (London), with remainder to his second son Francis Leveson-Gower, who was created Earl of Ellesmere in 1846 (see Egerton, Earls of Ellesmere).

In 1849 an estate in Ross-shire entered the family on the marriage of the 3rd Duke with Anne, in her own right Countess of Cromartie, the daughter of John Hay-Mackenzie of New Hall and Cromartie. At her death in 1888, however, this property and her title passed by special remainder to her second surviving son Francis, 2nd Earl of Cromartie.

The Staffordshire and Shropshire estates were consolidated by piecemeal purchase between the 16th and the 19th century. Borough electoral influence in Staffordshire came with acquisitions at Newcastle-under-Lyme (in the late 17th and early 18th century) and Lichfield (in the mid-18th century), but these interests were disposed of before 1832, the latter to Lord Anson. Between 1912 and 1917 the Yorkshire and Shropshire estates and Stafford House (London, bought 1827) were sold and Trentham House was demolished, though estates in Staffordshire and Scotland were retained and Sutton Place (Surrey) was acquired c.1919 as a residence. On the death of the 5th Duke in 1963 the family estates passed to his niece Elizabeth, who became in her own right Countess of Sutherland, but his cousin the 5th Earl of Ellesmere succeeded as 6th Duke of Sutherland.

Bill Hill (Berkshire) was purchased in 1734 by Mary, Countess of Harold, who married the 1st Earl Gower as his third wife in 1736. On her death in 1785 it was inherited by her son the Hon. John Leveson-Gower, to whose heirs it passed.

Estates in 1883: Salop 17,495 acres, Staffs 12,744 acres, Yorks NR 1,853 acres; Sutherland 1,176,454 acres, Ross-shire 149,999 acres; total 1,358,545 acres worth £141,667 a year.

Places:
  • Aboyne, Aberdeenshire
  • Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire
  • Blurton, Staffordshire
  • Braunston, Northamptonshire
  • Bridgewater House, London
  • Brora, Sutherlandshire
  • Canterbury, Kent
  • Castle Leod, Ross and Cromarty
  • Cleveland Court, London
  • Cliveden, Buckinghamshire
  • Cobham, Kent
  • Dornoch, Sutherlandshire
  • Dudley, Worcestershire
  • Dunrobin, Sutherlandshire
  • Freasley, Warwickshire
  • Golspie, Sutherlandshire
  • Great Wyrley, Staffordshire
  • Grindon, Staffordshire
  • Halling, Kent
  • Hope, Derbyshire
  • Inveresk, Midlothian
  • Ketley, Shropshire
  • Leegomery, Shropshire
  • Lichfield, Staffordshire
  • Lilleshall, Shropshire
  • Meirheath, Staffordshire
  • Middlewich, Cheshire
  • Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire
  • Newport, Shropshire
  • Preston, Kirkcudbrightshire
  • Pulrossie, Sutherlandshire
  • Rosebank, Midlothian
  • Scourie, Sutherlandshire
  • Sheriffhales, Shropshire
  • Shipley, Shropshire
  • Skelbo, Sutherlandshire
  • Stafford House, London
  • Stittenham, Yorkshire
  • Stowheath, Staffordshire
  • Strathpeffer, Ross and Cromarty
  • Sutton Place, Surrey
  • Tongue, Sutherlandshire
  • Trentham, Staffordshire
  • Walsall, Staffordshire
  • Wellington, Shropshire
  • White Notley, Essex
  • Wick, Caithness-shire
  • Willows, Berkshire
  • Windsor, Berkshire
  • Wolverhampton, Staffordshire
  • Woolmers, Hertfordshire
Sources of authority: Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts, Guide to Principal Estate and Family Collections L-W, 1999.
Name authority reference: GB/NNAF/F84049 (Former ISAAR ref: GB/NNAF/F10802 )
Collections
  Description Held by Reference Further information
1
12th cent-20th cent: Staffs (Trentham, etc) and Salop (Lilleshall, etc) deeds, legal and trust papers, manorial records, estate, mining, coal and iron working, household and Sutherland-Leveson-Gower family papers and misc Cheshire (Middlewich, etc), Derbys (Hope, etc), Essex (White Notley, etc), Kent (Halling, etc), Leics (Ashby-de-la-Zouch, etc) and Warwicks (Freasley, etc) deeds and papers 12th-20th cent, with estate and household papers for Berks (Willows in Windsor) c1834-1902 and Yorks (Stittenham, etc) 17th-20th cent, estate papers for Herts (Woolmers) 1801-15, Surrey (Sutton Place) 1916-18, Ross and Cromarty (Castle Leod in Strathpeffer, etc) c1853-94 and Sutherland (Dunrobin, etc) c1815-1910, general English and Scottish estate agency papers c1799-20th cent, misc estate papers 15th-20th cent, incl Braunston (Northants) manorial records 15th-16th cent, Walsall (Staffs) survey late 16th cent, Grindon (Staffs) rentals and estate papers c1700-51 and Dudley (Worcs) barony accounts 1489-1522, London (Sutherland House, Bridgewater House, etc) household papers 17th-20th cent, Cliveden (Bucks) household accounts mid 19th cent, inventory of Queen's Palace Canterbury (Kent) 1598, monastic records 13th-16th cent and Barratt, Cobham and Copinger family papers from 15th cent, etc
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Staffordshire County Record Office
NRA 10699 Leveson-Gower

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101a, b, d, g, h], Annual return 1998, 2006
2
1840-1978: Staffs (Trentham, etc) deeds and papers
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Staffordshire County Record Office
NRA 10699 Leveson-Gower

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101e]
3
1697-1919: Staffs (Newcastle-under-Lyme, Trentham, etc) and misc Salop (Wellington, etc) abstracts of title 1883-1919 and estate and mining leases 1697-1882
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Staffordshire County Record Office
NRA 25766

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101f]
4
1834-1914: Trentham (Staffs) architectural drawings
Potteries Museum and Art Gallery
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101i]
5
19th cent: Trentham (Staffs) architectural drawings of Sir Charles Barry (1795-1860)
Getty Research Institute for the History of Art and the Humanities
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101i]
6
19th cent: Trentham (Staffs) architectural drawings of Sir Charles Barry (1795-1860)
Royal Institute of British Architects
NRA 34203 Barry
7
1800-1919: Trentham and Lilleshall estates financial papers and misc letters, in albums
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Staffordshire County Record Office
See Annual Return 2016
8
1824-1827: Lichfield (Staffs) burgage rental
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Lichfield Record Office
NRA 8864

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101j]
9
1838: Stowheath (Staffs) map, survey and extent
Wolverhampton City Archives
NRA 21915 Wolverhampton misc

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101k]
10
12th cent-20th cent: Salop (Lilleshall, Sheriff Hales, etc) deeds 12th-16th cent and legal, manorial and estate papers 15th-20th cent, with Lilleshall house and garden papers 1818-1918 and Cleveland Court (London) agreements 1805-07
Shropshire Archives
NRA 33433 Leveson-Gower

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101l]
11
1337-19th cent: Newport (Salop) manorial court records 1337, 1542-1652, with related deeds, legal and other papers 17th-19th cent
Shropshire Archives
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101m]
12
12th cent-16th cent: Lilleshall Abbey (Salop) deeds and papers
Shropshire Archives
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101n]
13
13th cent-19th cent: misc Salop (Lilleshall, Newport, Sheriff Hales, etc) deeds and estate papers 13th-19th cent, incl Lilleshall Abbey bailiff's account 1524-25 and Leveson family deeds 1555-1693
Shropshire Archives
NRA 11563 Shropshire

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101o]
14
1906-1907: Lilleshall (Salop) estate letter books
Shropshire Archives
NRA 11563 Shropshire

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101p]
15
1725: Shipley (Salop) estate map
Shropshire Archives
NRA 11563 Shropshire

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101q]
16
1912: Lilleshall (Salop) estate sale plans
Shropshire Archives
NRA 11563 Shropshire

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101r]
17
13th cent: Lilleshall Abbey (Salop) cartulary
British Library, Manuscript Collections
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101u]
18
1759 - 1838: Wandsworth West Hill estate papers
Wandsworth Heritage Service
19
13th cent-19th cent: Sutherland (Dornoch, Dunrobin, Scourie, Tongue, etc) and misc Aberdeenshire (Aboyne, etc), Caithness-shire (Wick, etc) and Moray writs, legal papers, rentals, accounts, estate, household and Sutherland-Leveson-Gower family corresp and papers 13th-19th cent and estate papers for Preston (Kirkcudbrightshire) c1721-70, Rosebank in Inveresk (Midlothian) 1729-58, Ross and Cromarty 1811-45 and Stittenham (Yorks) 1807-34
National Library of Scotland, Manuscript Collections
NRA 11006

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101s]
20
c1861-1920: Sutherland (Brora, Dunrobin, Scourie, Tongue, etc) titles and estate plans, accounts, vouchers, corresp and papers
National Library of Scotland, Manuscript Collections
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101s]
21
1823-1894: further Sutherland (Dunrobin, etc) estate papers, etc
National Library of Scotland, Manuscript Collections
See Annual Return 2002
22
1826-1917: Lillieshall estate: albums of vouchers and misc financial papers
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service: Staffordshire County Record Office
See Annual Return 2016
23
18th cent: Sutherland (Dunrobin, Pulrossie, Skelbo, etc) estate papers 18th cent and papers rel to the Earl of Sutherland's Regiment 1746-60 and the Sutherland Fencibles 1781-97
National Records of Scotland (formerly National Archives of Scotland)
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101t]
24
19th cent: misc Tongue (Sutherland) estate papers late 19th cent, with report and plan by James Loch rel to the Sutherland estate 1820
Highland Archives
See Guide to the Highland Council Archive p75
25
18th cent-early 19th cent: Sutherland (Dunrobin, etc) estate and farm papers 1787-97 and misc Sutherland-Leveson-Gower family papers 18th-early 19th cent, incl Dunrobin and Trentham (Staffs) library caatalogues, Privy Seal papers of the Marquess of Stafford 1755-94 and records of the Sutherland Volunteers 1793-97
Huntington Library
NRA 24601 Egerton (Bridgwater)

See HMC Principal family and estate collections A-K, 1996 [33a]
26
Dunrobin (Sutherland) architectural drawings of Sir Charles Barry (1795-1860)
Canadian Centre for Architecture
See information from website
27
15th cent-19th cent: misc Sutherland and Sutherland-Leveson-Gower family and genealogical papers 17th-19th cent, with Fearn Abbey (Ross-shire) kalendar 15th-17th cent
National Library of Scotland, Manuscript Collections
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101s]
28
18th cent: Leveson-Gower family papers, mainly of the 1st Earl Gower (1694-1754) and the Marquess of Stafford (1721-1803)
British Library, Manuscript Collections
See Former ref PRO 30/29
29
18th cent: Sutherland family, legal and official paper
National Library of Scotland, Manuscript Collections
30
1864, 1903-1905: Berlin diary of Harriet, Dowager Duchess of Sutherland, 1864, with diary of Lord Ronald Charles Sutherland-Gower 1903-1905
British Library, Manuscript Collections
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101v]
31
1751-1792: South African papers of Colonel Robert Jacob Gordon (1743-1795) (formerly at Trentham)
Brenthurst Library
See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [101w]
32
late 19th cent: executorship papers of the 3rd Duke of Sutherland (1828-1892)
Durham County Record Office
NRA 11528 Vane-Tempest-Stewart

See HMC Principal family and estate collections L-W, 1999 [110g]
33
1742-1792: Privy Seal papers of the Marquess of Stafford (1721-1803)
Northamptonshire Record Office
NRA 4357

See HMC Principal family and estate collections A-K, 1996 [33c]

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