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Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston Letters to Emily Ashley-Cooper


Held at: Princeton University Library: Manuscripts Division [Contact Us]

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Princeton University Library: Manuscripts Division. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Palmerston, Henry John Temple, viscount, 1784-1865

Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston (20 October 1784-18 October 1865) was a British statesman who served twice as prime minister in the mid-19th century, from 1855 to 1858 and 1859 to 1865. After gaining a seat in Parliament in 1807, Palmerston held government office almost continuously until his death, serving as secretary at war (1809-1828), foreign secretary (1830-1834, 1835-1841, and 1846-1851), and as home secretary (1852-1855). Palmerston had many extramarital relationships and is thought to have fathered several children, including Emily Ashley-Cooper.

The collection consists of 15 letters, dating from August 1836 to January 1837 from Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston, to his putative daughter Emily Ashley-Cooper, Countess of Shaftesbury. The letters are addressed from London to Emily Ashley (referred to as "Mrs. Ashley") at Windsor Castle and Brighton. Born Lady Emily Caroline Catherine Frances Cowper (1810-1872), daughter of Peter Cowper, 5th Earl Cowper, and Emily Lamb, Countess Cowper, Emily Ashley-Cooper's biological father is likely to have been Lord Palmerston, who later married her mother. Her married name became Ashley-Cooper when she married Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 7th Earl of Shaftesbury (1801-1885) in 1830. Also included with the letters is a portrait engraving of Maria Ann Ashley-Cooper (d. 1891), who was married to the brother of Emily's husband, Anthony William Ashley-Cooper (1803-1877).

Arranged chronologically.

Purchase, 2016 (AM 2016-86).

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This collection was processed by Kelly Bolding in August 2016. Finding aid written by Kelly Bolding in August 2016.

No materials were separated from the collection during 2016 processing.

Manuscripts Division
Finding Aid Author
Kelly Bolding
Finding Aid Date
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

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Collection Inventory

Palmerston Letters to Emily Ashley-Cooper, 1836 August-September. 1 folder.
Physical Description

1 folder

Palmerston Letters to Emily Ashley-Cooper, 1836 October-1837 January. 1 folder.
Physical Description

1 folder

"The Honorable Mrs. Ashley" Portrait Engraving of Maria Ann Ashley-Cooper, undated. 1 folder.
Scope and Contents

Portrait engraving on paper drawn by J. Bostock and engraved by J. Thomson. A clipping pasted on the back of the image describes the subject as the eldest daughter of Colonel Hugh D. Baillie and the wife of Anthony-William Ashley.

Physical Description

1 folder

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