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  Cuthbert Collingwood (1748–1810), by Andrew Plimer, 1790–95 Cuthbert Collingwood (1748–1810), by Andrew Plimer, 1790–95
Collingwood, Cuthbert, Baron Collingwood (1748–1810), naval officer, was born on 26 September 1748 on The Side, Newcastle upon Tyne, the eighth child and eldest son of Cuthbert Collingwood (1712–1775), a merchant in Newcastle, and Milcah (1713–1788), daughter of Reginald Dobson of Barwise near Appleby, Westmorland. Two more sons followed. His father was of an old but impoverished Northumberland family.

Long apprenticeship for command, 1761–1779

Collingwood attended Newcastle Free School under Hugh Moises, a renowned teacher, until he was twelve, when, on 28 August 1761, he and his next brother, Wilfred, joined the frigate Shannon, commanded by their mother's cousin, Captain Richard Brathwaite. The brothers were to serve together for the next twelve years. The Shannon was employed mostly off Norway and in the Channel Fleet until she paid off in February 1763 at the end of the Seven Years' War. After eighteen months at home the brothers rejoined the Shannon under Captain Boteler in October 1764, and spent most of the next year in Commodore Thomas Graves's expedition to west Africa. Brathwaite resumed command in October 1765 and the brothers followed him into the frigate Gibraltar the following February. In March 1767, after eight months off Newfoundland and Cadiz, Brathwaite and the Collingwoods transferred to the frigate Liverpool, in which they went back to Newfoundland for eighteen months and then served almost continuously in the western Mediterranean for three and a half years. As well as a return to Cadiz, it was Cuthbert's first experience of the waters off Minorca and Toulon, which he was to know so well forty years later. The Liverpool paid off in March 1772 and the brothers joined the Lenox (74 guns), guard-ship at Portsmouth, commanded by a fellow Northumbrian, Robert Roddam. In the following year Cuthbert spent six months in the West Indies in the Portland (50 guns) and the Princess Amelia (80 guns).

In February 1774, after another six months in the Lenox, Collingwood joined the Preston (50 guns), flagship of Vice-Admiral Samuel Graves, and sailed for Boston, Massachusetts, as war with the American colonists grew imminent. At the battle of Bunker Hill on 17 June 1775 he landed with what he described as ‘a party of seamen, supplying the army with what was necessary for them’ (Naval Chronicle, 23, 380). For his services Graves promoted him lieutenant from that date. It had been a long apprenticeship—he had been at sea for thirteen years as able seaman, midshipman, and master's mate, had passed the examination for lieutenant in 1772, but was without an influential patron. He joined the Somerset (74 guns) as fourth lieutenant immediately after Bunker Hill and returned home in February 1776.

Collingwood's next appointment, as first lieutenant of the sloop Hornet, which he joined in March 1776 and which sailed for the West Indies in December, was an unhappy experience under a brutal captain, Robert Haswell. During one period of six months Haswell ordered the flogging of a third of his ship's company. In September 1777 he brought against Collingwood charges of contempt, disobedience of orders, and breach of the captain's instructions. Collingwood was court-martialled and acquitted of all charges but advised by the court to conduct himself with more ‘alacrity’.

With the arrival in Jamaica of Rear-Admiral Sir Peter Parker as commander-in-chief, Collingwood's fortunes were transformed. In July 1778 Parker appointed him to succeed Lieutenant Horatio Nelson, a friend since 1773, as second lieutenant of the Lowestoffe (32 guns, Captain William Locker). In December Parker took him into his flagship, the Bristol (50 guns), as second lieutenant and in June 1779, recognizing his qualities, gave him his first command, the brig Badger, again succeeding Nelson.

Early commands, 1779–1791

On 22 March 1780 Collingwood was made post captain, less than five years since his promotion to lieutenant, and sent to San Juan, Nicaragua, to take command of Hinchinbroke (28 guns) from Nelson, who had caught a dangerous fever during an expedition against the Spaniards. Collingwood found that four men, including the first lieutenant, had just died, seventy men were ill with fever, and the ship was ‘very leaky’. Despite his erecting a hut ashore for the sick and regularly washing the ship with vinegar, another 154 men died on board during the next four months out of a ship's company of 200. More died in hospital after the ship's return to Jamaica in August. Deaths from fever in the army and the transport ships were on a similar scale.

After this harrowing experience Collingwood was given command of the Pelican (24 guns). In August 1781, after capturing a French frigate and five privateers, she was wrecked on the Morant keys near Jamaica in a hurricane. After ten days of extreme privation the ship's company, her carronades, and most of her stores were saved and taken back in a frigate sent from Jamaica. Collingwood was honourably acquitted at the mandatory court martial, and he and his ship's company were commended for ‘doing everything becoming good officers and men’ (18 Aug 1781, TNA: PRO, ADM1/5318).

Collingwood returned to England in 1782 after four and a half years of active employment during the American War of Independence. The kindness he received from Sir Peter Parker was touchingly recalled twenty-five years later in a letter to Parker (by then admiral of the fleet) eleven days after Trafalgar:
Had it not been for the fall of our noble friend … your pleasure would have been perfect—that two of your own pupils, raised under your eye, and cherished by your kindness, should render such service to their Country as I hope this battle will in its effect be. (1 Nov 1805, NMM, RUSI/NM/214(i))
After eighteen years' sea service, most of it abroad, Collingwood was ashore for a year before receiving his next command, the Sampson (64 guns); but with the war over she paid off in April 1783. However, he was immediately appointed to the frigate Mediator and sailed again for the West Indies, where he was joined the following year by Nelson in the Boreas as senior captain. Nelson, supported by Collingwood, saw it as his duty to uphold the navigation laws and prevent illegal trading in the islands by foreigners (now including Americans), which was considered harmful to the lawful trade of Canadians and Nova Scotians. The captains received no support, indeed opposition, from their commander-in-chief, Rear-Admiral Sir Richard Hughes, but their actions to suppress the trade were fully approved of by the government in London. ‘This station has not been over pleasant’, wrote Nelson to Captain Locker. ‘Had it not been for Collingwood, it would have been the most disagreeable I ever saw’ (5 March 1786, Nicolas, 1.156). They had recently drawn each other's portraits. In July 1786 the Mediator returned home and Collingwood spent four years in Northumberland, ‘making my acquaintance with my own family, to whom I had hitherto been as it were a stranger’ (Naval Chronicle, 23, 381).

In July 1790, on the threat of war with Spain after the Nootka Sound incident, Collingwood took command of the frigate Mermaid and sailed once more for the West Indies. With the end of the dispute Mermaid returned home in April 1791 and Collingwood to Northumberland. On 16 June he married in Newcastle, Sarah (bap. 1762, d. 1819), daughter of John Erasmus Blackett, a well-to-do merchant and four times mayor of Newcastle. Sarah was the granddaughter of Robert Roddam (1711–1744) of Hethpoole and Caldburne (not Admiral Robert Roddam, as is often stated). Later in the year they moved to Morpeth, where their daughter Sarah was born on 28 May 1792, followed by a second child, Mary Patience, on 13 August 1793.

War with France, 1793–1805

On 22 February 1793, three weeks after the outbreak of war with France, Collingwood took command of the Prince (90 guns) at Plymouth. In July she hoisted the flag of Rear-Admiral George Bowyer and sailed with the Channel Fleet until the end of the year. Bowyer and Collingwood then transferred to the Barfleur (98 guns) and took part in the five-day engagement culminating in the battle of the Glorious First of June (1794). Barfleur was warmly engaged on 29 May and throughout the main battle three days later. Bowyer lost a leg early in that encounter and as he fell was caught by Collingwood, who then conducted Bowyer's subdivision as well as fighting his own ship. But, though Bowyer was created a baronet, Collingwood was not one of the captains specifically mentioned in Lord Howe's report and he was therefore not awarded the gold medal. He was deeply hurt.

In July 1794 Collingwood transferred to the Hector and in December to the Excellent (both 74 guns). After a few months off Ushant he sailed for the Mediterranean and joined the fleet guarding Corsica and blockading Toulon. In the defeat of the much larger Spanish fleet off Cape St Vincent on 14 February 1797 Excellent, famed for the rapidity of her gunfire, had a most distinguished share. She was quickly in action with the Salvador del Mundo (112 guns). ‘Soon after, her colours being struck and her fire ceasing, I hailed her, and understanding she surrendered shot ahead under the lee of the next ship in succession (the San Ysidro) when the former ship rehoisted her colours’ (14 Feb 1797, TNA: PRO, captain's log, Excellent). Excellent then engaged the San Ysidro (74 guns), which struck after a short but fierce engagement, the first to surrender to the British fleet. Collingwood immediately pressed on to assist Commodore Nelson in the Captain by engaging the San Nicolas (80 guns), ‘giving her a most awful and tremendous fire’ (Nicolas, 2.345). This caused her to ‘run on board’ the San Josef (112 guns) and enabled Nelson to capture both ships. Excellent with other ships then engaged the Spanish flagship, Santissima Trinidada (136 guns), for an hour and inflicted much damage, but she had to be abandoned when several Spaniards which had seen little action came to her assistance. Nelson wrote the next day to Collingwood: ‘My dearest Friend. “A friend in need is a friend indeed” was never more truly verified than by your most noble and gallant conduct yesterday in sparing the Captain from further loss’ (NMM, LBK/15). ‘Nothing’, wrote Vice-Admiral William Waldegrave, ‘could exceed the spirit and true officership which you so happily displayed yesterday … May England long possess such men as yourself—'tis saying everything for her glory’ (ibid.).

Gold medals were awarded to all flag officers and captains. When Collingwood was told this by John Jervis (now earl of St Vincent) he replied that he could not receive his while that for ‘the First of June’ was withheld. ‘To receive such a distinction now would be to acknowledge the propriety of that injustice.’ ‘That is precisely the answer which I expected from you’, replied St Vincent; in due course both medals were sent to him by Lord Spencer, the first lord, who wrote rather lamely: ‘The former medal would have been transmitted to you some months ago if a proper and safe conveyance had been found for it’ (3 April 1797, NMM, COL/14).

Excellent spent the next twenty-one months blockading the Spanish fleet in Cadiz, and returned home in November 1798. For a few months from September 1797 Collingwood was appointed a commodore by St Vincent with command of the Cadiz blockade. Excellent paid off at Portsmouth in January 1799 and Collingwood was able to go to Morpeth to visit his family, whom he had last seen for eight days in December 1794. On 14 February 1799 he was promoted rear-admiral of the white and in May hoisted his flag in the Triumph (74 guns). His division sailed immediately to reinforce Lord Keith in the Mediterranean. After an unsuccessful search for a French fleet under Admiral Bruix, Keith and his fleet returned to Ushant in August to find that the French had entered Brest a week earlier.

Thereafter, until May 1802, Collingwood was almost continuously at sea blockading the French in Brest with occasional visits to Torbay and Cawsand Bay, usually for shelter from gales. In January 1800 he transferred his flag to the Barfleur. On 1 January 1801 he was advanced to rear-admiral of the red, and on the 27th his wife, their elder daughter, and her little dog arrived on a visit to Plymouth while he was dining with Nelson. But the same evening he had to sail for Brest, leaving them to wait six weeks for his return; they then had two weeks together before he returned to Ushant. It was not until May 1802, two months after the signing of the peace of Amiens, that Collingwood was able to strike his flag, go home to Morpeth, and have a rare opportunity for his legendary pastime of planting acorns to provide timber for ships of the line of the future.

With the resumption of war in May 1803 Collingwood left home and on 3 June hoisted his flag in the Diamond (38 guns). He never saw his wife or children again. He sailed at once, joining Admiral William Cornwallis off Ushant—‘Here comes my old friend Coll, the last that left and the first to join me’ (J. Ralfe, Naval Biography of Great Britain, 1828, 2.341). During the next two and a half years he was in command of a detached squadron blockading the enemy fleets on the Atlantic coasts of France and Spain except again for occasional brief visits to Cawsand Bay or Torbay for shelter. He changed his flagship frequently to avoid quitting his station for repairs or victualling. Venerable (twice), Minotaur, Colossus, Culloden, Prince, and Dreadnought all flew his flag in this unglamorous, testing, but essential task. On 23 April 1804 he was promoted vice-admiral of the blue, and on 21 May 1805, after ten days in Cawsand Bay, he sailed for Cadiz with eleven ships of the line, never to see England again.

Trafalgar, 1805

While Nelson was searching for Villeneuve's fleet in the West Indies, Collingwood blockaded Cadiz and Cartagena. On 20 August, when he was off Cadiz with only three ships and a frigate, Villeneuve's fleet sought refuge there after its return from the West Indies thinking, wrongly, that Nelson was on its tail. For his skill in deceiving the enemy as to the size of his force and for resuming the blockade the moment all thirty-six ships had entered Cadiz, Collingwood received high praise: ‘Everybody in England admired your adroitness’, wrote Nelson (Nicolas, 7.114). Ten days later Collingwood had twenty-six ships of the line off Cadiz, on 29 September Nelson arrived to resume command of the fleet, and on 10 October Collingwood, as second in command, transferred his flag to the Royal Sovereign (100 guns).

At Trafalgar on 21 October, with thirty-three French and Spanish ships facing twenty-seven British, Collingwood led the lee column. His flagship was the first to engage the enemy—‘See how that noble fellow, Collingwood, carries his ship into action!’, exclaimed Nelson (J. Ralfe, Naval Biography of Great Britain, 1828, 2.342). The Santa Ana (112 guns), the Spanish vice-admiral's flagship, was his main target and after a two-hour duel, during which she was at times assisted by four other ships, she struck to the Royal Sovereign, which had lost two of her masts. Collingwood received a slight wound; indeed nearly all on the Royal Sovereign's quarterdeck and poop were either killed or wounded.

At the end of the day, with the Franco-Spanish fleet defeated, Lord Nelson dead, and the Royal Sovereign unable to manoeuvre, Collingwood transferred to the frigate Euryalus (Captain Blackwood) and assumed the command-in-chief of the victorious though much damaged British fleet. He was faced with a formidable task. Seventeen enemy ships had been captured, one had sunk, four escaped south to be caught by Strachan two weeks later—‘really a nice nick’, as Collingwood told Admiral Duckworth (2 Dec 1805, priv. coll.)—and eleven fled towards Cadiz. But early the next day an onshore gale sprang up and blew with increasing severity for five days. Collingwood has been criticized for not following Nelson's intention to anchor the fleet at the end of the battle, but many ships had lost their anchors or had their cables shot and this, with the heavy swell preceding the gale, made anchoring impossible for most ships. The first priority was for disabled British ships and enemy prizes to be taken in tow. As the gale grew more violent many of the prizes were wrecked on the rocky coast; others had to be destroyed to prevent their recapture, which enemy survivors indeed attempted on the 23rd, losing two more ships in the process. Disabled British ships and four prizes were towed to Gibraltar; no British ship was lost. ‘Collingwood's desire to preserve the prizes was as great as anyone in the fleet’, wrote William Blackwood (although a devotee of Nelson) to his wife on the 25th. ‘Could you witness his grief and anxiety (who has done all that an Admiral could do) you would be very deeply affected’ (Blackwood's Magazine, July 1833, 13).

Wounded Spanish prisoners were sent ashore, an act of humanity by Collingwood which the Spaniards never forgot, and in return British wounded were given beds in Spanish hospitals. In Euryalus Collingwood was soon joined by Admiral Villeneuve and two other senior prisoners of war. His official dispatch, his letter of thanks to the fleet, and his call for a day of thanksgiving for the victory, written in his cramped and heaving quarters, are masterpieces of the English language.

On 9 November 1805 Collingwood was promoted vice-admiral of the red and created Baron Collingwood of Caldburne and Hethpoole, two small properties inherited by his wife. ‘I hear considerable difficulty arose in finding where my estate lay, and what it was called. I thought all the world knew I was no Land-Lord’ (Collingwood to Mrs Moutray, 9 Dec 1805, Public and Private Correspondence, 1.226). He was also awarded a pension of £2000 p.a. for life with, after his death, £1000 to his widow and £500 to each of his daughters. Not having a son he was anxious that his title should descend through his daughters but to his deep disappointment this was not allowed. Gold medals were awarded to all admirals and captains, making Collingwood one of only three officers (with Nelson and Sir Edward Berry) to win three gold medals throughout the twenty-two years of war.

Commander-in-chief, Mediterranean

With the abandonment of his plans to invade England, Napoleon turned his attention to the domination of the eastern Mediterranean, the Ottoman empire, and the route to India. The Mediterranean thus assumed major strategic importance just as Collingwood took over as commander-in-chief. His fleet had to watch enemy fleets in Cadiz, Cartagena, and Toulon, secure the bases of Gibraltar, Malta, and Sicily, maintain squadrons in the Adriatic and the Levant, and protect British trade while denying it to the enemy. Collingwood was the only servant of the government in the Mediterranean who, with responsibilities from Cadiz to Constantinople, could survey the whole theatre; thus in many ways he became the originator and co-ordinator of British policy, diplomatic as well as naval.

Since communication with London was so slow and uncertain Collingwood had to make his own political judgements as changing circumstances required, conducting ‘political correspondence with the Spaniards, the Turks, the Albanians, the Egyptians, and all the States of Barbary’ (who supplied beef and water to the fleet) (Collingwood to his wife, 8 Nov 1808, Public and Private Correspondence, 2.286). To these he could have added the kingdoms of Sardinia and Sicily, the governor of Malta, and British ambassadors, generals, and consuls as well as ministers in London. At the same time he had to operate and administer a fleet of up to eighty ships, including thirty of the line. To assist him in these tasks Collingwood had the part-time services of his young flag captain (Richard Thomas), his flag lieutenant, and his competent but even younger secretary, W. R. Cosway. In his conduct of the fleet he was able to delegate business in the normal way to his subordinate flag officers and captains in the various regions of his command. But he was not by nature a delegator and in his political and diplomatic work there was nobody to whom he could delegate:
I do everything for myself, and never distract my mind with other people's opinions. To the credit of any good which happens I may lay claim, and I will never shift upon another the discredit when the result is bad. (ibid., 2.286)
Collingwood lacked the charisma of a Nelson and did not have the opportunity to command a fleet in a major battle. He was a man of great rectitude and drove himself hard, though his seemingly cold professional exterior concealed a much softer heart and sensibility. This is revealed in his letters to his family and friends, by his dry sense of humour, and by the respect in which he was held in his ships. He was good at encouraging youngsters, and had a reputation for keeping his ship's company, even the troublesome, contented as well as proficient with a minimum of corporal punishment. He insisted they should be called by their name or ‘sailor’ rather than ‘you there’, and took particular care over their comfort and health. He experimented with treatments for scurvy and invented a ventilator to improve the flow of fresh air in the lower decks; on one occasion, after fifteen months at sea without letting go an anchor, there was not a sick man among the 750 in his ship. As a supreme commander, which he virtually was in the Mediterranean, Collingwood had intelligence and patience that were ideal for his strategic and diplomatic tasks, and he held throughout the confidence of the foreign secretary and the first lord. He has, perhaps justly, been criticized for spending so much of his time at his desk, but his administrative burdens were enormous and he had no chief of staff or first captain to help him. Some writers seem to have undervalued his diplomatic skills and the respect in which he was held by allies, foes, and neutrals. Probably none of his contemporaries, including Nelson, could have conducted the command so successfully.

The Mediterranean, 1805–1810

Ten days after Trafalgar, Collingwood transferred from Euryalus to the Queen (90 guns)—to be reunited with his devoted dog, Bounce—and in April 1806 to the Ocean (98 guns). His flagship took him to wherever at the time was the most danger from the French or he could best assist an ally. For his first nineteen months this meant blockading Cadiz or Cartagena. In July 1807 he led a squadron to the Dardanelles in support of an attempt by Sir Arthur Paget to coerce Turkey away from her alliance with France. They arrived just as news was received of the treaty of Tilsit between Russia and France. Paget was unable to persuade Turkey to break with France but Collingwood ensured that the Russian fleet did not fall into French hands.

The safety of Sicily, essential for the maintenance of the fleet and for its strategic position, was always an anxiety, and a strong squadron had to be maintained off the island to forestall a French invasion from Italy. In January 1808 five French ships of the line escaped from Rochefort, entered the Mediterranean, and joined Vice-Admiral Ganteaume's five ships at Toulon. The combined squadron sailed on 10 February. When Collingwood at Syracuse learned of this on the 22nd he was set the triple tasks of finding them, bringing them to battle with sufficient force, and guarding Sicily, which seemed their most likely objective. To his great chagrin they eluded him and retired to Toulon.
My heart was bent on the destruction of that fleet, but I never got intelligence where they really were until they were out of reach … Their escape was by chance, for at one time we were very near them without knowing it. (Collingwood to Admiral Lord Radstock, 18 June 1808, Public and Private Correspondence, 2.162)
Shortage of frigates was, as ever, the drawback. Piers Mackesy's account of the incident refutes the Dictionary of National Biography's criticism of Collingwood for failing to bring the French to battle (Mariner's Mirror, 41, 1955, 3–14 and 137–48). The Dictionary of National Biography's criticism of Collingwood's ‘general order’ for battle of 23 March 1808 is similarly well answered in the Naval Review (24, 1936, 384).

In May 1808 Spain rose against Napoleon's invasion of its country. Collingwood sailed immediately to Cadiz to provide assistance:
There was great joy amongst the Spaniards when I came here … My first business was to remove all those doubts of our good intentions which I succeeded in … When I went on shore the multitudes of people was immense that came to receive me. (Collingwood to W. Spencer-Stanhope, 20 Aug 1808, priv. coll.)
They had not forgotten his chivalry after Trafalgar. Now he gave them much valuable political guidance and sent his frigates to assist their army against the French invasion of Catalonia.

In April 1809 Collingwood shifted his flag from Ocean to the Ville de Paris (110 guns). Although the blockade of ships and troop convoys in Toulon was still essential, the weight of naval effort shifted eastwards. Turkey was no longer an enemy and Austria had once more become an ally. Frigates and brigs were sent to support Austria in the Adriatic, destroying trade and capturing forts, garrisons, and castles, ‘scaling towers at midnight and storming redoubts at mid-day … Those youths [the captains] think that nothing is beyond their enterprise and they seldom fail of success’ (Collingwood to Rear-Admiral Thomas Sotheby, 30 June 1809, Public and Private Correspondence, 2.376).

In October, on Collingwood's initiative and with the reluctant assent of the military commander, Sir John Stuart, the Ionian Islands of Zante, Cephalonia, Ithaca, and Cerigo were liberated from the French in order to provide a foothold in the Adriatic should the French attack Greece or Turkey. They remained under British protection until 1864. Later that month, having withdrawn his ships from a close blockade of Toulon, Collingwood was off Minorca hoping to lure the French fleet of seventeen of the line to sea. But only five men-of-war and a convoy of eighteen vessels for Barcelona sailed. Nevertheless two of the ships and seventeen of the much needed storeships were captured or sunk.

From 14 November 1809 to 7 January 1810 Collingwood's flagship lay in Port Mahon, Minorca—the longest period he had spent in harbour for over seven years. After a further period off Toulon he returned to Port Mahon on 25 February. His health was rapidly deteriorating and on 6 March, having turned over his command to Vice-Admiral Purvis, he sailed for England. Reassured to find his flagship underway, he rallied and said ‘then I may yet live to meet the French once more’ (Public and Private Correspondence, 2.427). But twenty-four hours later he died (probably from cancer of the stomach) on board the Ville de Paris, aged sixty-one. He had spent only one year ashore in seventeen years of war and was worn out in the service of his country.

As early as August 1808 Collingwood had written to Lord Mulgrave, the first lord, asking to be relieved because of his very weak state of health, which he attributed to the long time he had been at sea. To this Mulgrave wrote that he knew
not how I should be able to supply all that would be lost to the service of the country and to the general interests of Europe by your absence from the Mediterranean … Through a variety of difficult and delicate arrangements, political as well as professional, your Lordship has in no instance failed to adopt the most judicious and best-concerted measures. (6 and 25 Sept 1808, NMM, LBK/40)
Collingwood's acceptance was characteristic of his overriding sense of duty and he had stayed on for another eighteen months. But by February 1810 his health had further deteriorated and he applied again to Mulgrave to be relieved. After his death, but before news of it reached London, Admiral Sir Charles Cotton was appointed as his successor. Collingwood's body was taken to England, landed at Greenwich on 26 April, and, after lying in state there, was buried on 11 May in the crypt of St Paul's Cathedral near his friend Nelson. There are monuments to him in the south transept of St Paul's and in Newcastle Cathedral, and a statue on a massive pedestal at Tynemouth, defended by four guns from his flagship at Trafalgar. Three battleships have been named after him, and the Royal Navy training establishment at Fareham has been called HMS Collingwood since 1940.

C. H. H. Owen


TNA: PRO, Admiralty MSS · Collingwood and other MSS, NMM · A selection from the public and private correspondence of Vice-Admiral Lord Collingwood, interspersed with memoirs of his life, ed. G. L. Newnham-Collingwood, 5th edn, 2 vols. (1837) · The private correspondence of Admiral Lord Collingwood, ed. E. Hughes, Navy RS, 98 (1957) · P. Mackesy, The war in the Mediterranean, 1803–1810 (1957) · C. H. H. Owen, ed., ‘Letters from Vice-Admiral Lord Collingwood, 1794–1809’, The naval miscellany, Navy RS, 6 (2003) · BL, Add. MSS 14272–14280 and 40096–40098 · O. Warner, The life and letters of Vice-Admiral Lord Collingwood (1968) · W. C. Russell, Collingwood (1891) · The dispatches and letters of Vice-Admiral Lord Viscount Nelson, ed. N. H. Nicolas, 7 vols. (1844–6) · G. Murray, The life of Admiral Collingwood (1936) · W. Davies, A fine old English gentleman … Lord Collingwood (1875) · private information [family] · parish registers, St Nicholas's Church, Newcastle upon Tyne · Naval Chronicle, 23 (1810), 380–84 · Annual Register (1805)


BL, corresp. and papers, Add. MSS 14272–14280, 23207, 40096–40098 · Hunt. L., corresp. · NMM, corresp., letter-books, and journals, COL AGC/17, 25, 35; LBK/15, 40 · Northumbd RO, corresp. and MSS, NRO 1147 · U. Durham L., journal [transcript] |  BL, letters to Edward Collingwood, Add. MS 52780 · BL, corresp. with Arthur Paget, Add. MS 48397 · BL, letters to Horatio Nelson, Add. MSS 34903–34907, 34930–34931 · Edinburgh National War Museum of Scotland, letters to Sir Hew Dalrymple · Hunt. L., letters to Grenville family · NL Scot., letters to Carlyle family · NMM, corresp. with Lord Barham · NMM, corresp. with Edward Blackett; corresp. with Hugh Elliot; letters to Samuel Hood; Waldegrave MSS, letters to Lord Radstock · Northumbd RO, Newcastle upon Tyne, corresp. with Edward Blackett and J. E. Blackett · U. Durham L., Grey of Howick MSS, letters to second Earl Grey


H. Nelson, silhouette, 1784, NMM · A. Plimer, miniature, 1790–95, NMM [see illus.] · engraving, c.1802, repro. in Murray, Life, p. 90 · R. Bowyer, print, c.1803, repro. in R. Bowyer, Commemoration of the four great naval victories obtained by the English during the late war (1803) · Gaugain & Scriven, stipple, pubd 1806, BM · W. Say, mezzotint, pubd 1806, BM · G. Politi of Syracuse, oils, 1807, priv. coll. · C. Turner, mezzotint, 1807 (after G. Politi), NMM · C. Turner, mezzotint, 1811 (after G. Politi), NPG · J. Lonsdale?, oils, 1812, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle upon Tyne; repro. in Murray, Life, frontispiece · J. C. F. Rossi, marble bust, 1819, Newcastle Cathedral · F. Howard, oils, 1827, NPG · H. Howard, oils, c.1827 (after G. Politi), NMM · J. G. Lough, effigy on monument, Portland stone, 1845, Tynemouth, Northumberland · attrib. J. G. Lough, marble bust, c.1845, NPG · H. R. Cook, stipple (after R. Bowyer), NPG · R. Westmacott, monument, St Paul's Cathedral, London

Wealth at death  

approx. £163,000: Private correspondence, ed. E. Hughes, 306, n. 2