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Sir Robert Anderson (1841–1918) by James Russell & Sons © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Anderson, Sir Robert (1841–1918), spymaster, detective chief, and author, was born on 29 May 1841 in Mountjoy Square, Dublin, the son of Matthew Anderson (1804–1888), crown solicitor, Dublin, and his wife, Mary. He himself described his more distant forebears as 'among the Scotch colonists who made ...

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Melville, William (1850–1918), police officer and intelligence officer, was born in Sneem, co. Kerry, Ireland, on 25 April 1850, the eldest of three sons of James Melville, tenant farmer, and his wife, Catherine, née O'Connor. After attending the local Christian Brothers' school until the age of fifteen he worked for his father, who was then a baker and publican in ...

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Petrie, Sir David (1879–1961), police officer in India and head of the security service, was born on 9 September 1879 at Inveravon, Banffshire, the second surviving son of Thomas Petrie, master millwright, and his wife, Jane Allan. After taking an MA degree at ...

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Sillitoe, Sir Percy Joseph (1888–1962), police officer and intelligence officer, was born at Tulse Hill, London, on 22 May 1888, the second son and second child of Joseph Henry Sillitoe, average adjuster, and his wife, Bertha Leontine Smith. There was also a younger sister. The family suffered from the improvidence of ...

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Sir Percy Joseph Sillitoe (1888–1962) by Bassano © National Portrait Gallery, London