Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785

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Sackville was at the time of this letter the Secretary of State for the Colonies for Great Britain. He served in this capacity from 1775-1782. He was a member of the Parliament of Ireland (1733-1761) and of Great Britain (1761-1782).

From the description of [Letter] 1779 Oct. 8, Whitehall [to] Gov. Dalling / Geo. Germain. (Smith College). WorldCat record id: 352925060

British secretary of state for the colonies.

From the description of Papers, 1779. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 19647237

British army officer and public official.

From the description of George Germain, Viscount Sackville, correspondence, 1779. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70980839

English soldier and statesman-known as Lord George Sackville.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : Pall Mall, to Lord Bateman, 1759 Sept. 18. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270634137

British army officer and politician George Sackville Germain (1716-1785) was the son of Lionel Cranfield Sackville, seventh earl and first duke of Dorset, and Elizabeth Colyear. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin, Germain received his first army commission in an Irish regiment. In 1740 he served with distinction in the War of Austrian Succession and over the next eighteen years rose to prominence in both the British military and the House of Commons. In 1758, he attained the rank of commander- in-chief of the British forces in Germany under Prince Ferdinand of Brunswick, but shortly after, his military career ended in disgrace for failure to follow orders at the Battle of Minden.

Court martialed and dismissed from the service, Germain spent the next 16 years rebuilding his career in the House of Commons. In 1765, the Rockingham ministry appointed him vice-treasurer of Ireland. Upon her death in 1770, friend Lady Elizabeth Germain bequeathed to him her estate of Drayton along with a vast sum of money. Lady Germain's will also conferred to him the name Germain.

In 1775, Lord North appointed Germain first lord of trade and secretary of state for North America and the West Indies. The position gave him influence over the British army, navy, board of ordnance, and the treasury. He took office confident that vigorous British action combined with Loyalist support would insure victory. He helped orchestrate several military successes, such as the defense of Quebec (1776) and the capture of Charleston, South Carolina (1780), as well as disastrous defeats, such as the Battle of Saratoga (1777). As France, Spain, and the Netherlands entered the war, he focused much of his attention on naval battles in the West Indies. After Yorktown, he urged continuing the war and refused to accept American independence. His quarrelsome style alienated many of the top British commanders, George III, and the cabinet, and in February 1782, the King forced Germain to resign.

Germain married Diana Sambroke in 1754. They had two sons, Charles, later 2nd viscount Sackville, and George. He retired to his country estate, Stoneland Lodge in Sussex, and died there on August 26, 1785.

From the guide to the George Sackville Germain papers, Germain, George Sackville papers, 1683-1785, (William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Brown, Thomas, 1750-1825. Letter : Savannah, [Ga.], to Lord George Germaine, [London?, England], 1782 Apr. 6. Newberry Library
referencedIn Dunmore, John Murray, Earl of, 1732-1809. Correspondence, 1771-1778. Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Library
referencedIn Washington Irving's Life of George Washington, Volume VII, Miscellany, 1764-1792. Cornell University Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Plan of a war with Spain, 9 Dec. 1776. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Wayne, Anthony, 1745-1796. ALS, 1781 July 27 : Camp at Goods Bridge, to [George Washington]. Copley Press, J S Copley Library
referencedIn Boswell's Life of Johnson : including Boswell's Journal of a tour to the Hebrides and Johnson's Diary of a journey into North Wales, edited by George Birkbeck Hill, extra-illustrated, 1464-1897 (inclusive), 1724-1874 (bulk). Houghton Library
creatorOf Haldimand, Frederick, Sir, 1718-1791. Frederick Haldimand papers, 1778-1887 Detroit Public Library, Detroit Main Library
creatorOf Vaughan, John, ca. 1731-1795. John Vaughan papers, 1779-1781, 1784, 1789. William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. George Sackville Germain papers, 1683-1785. William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Autograph letter signed, 1775 Aug. 26. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn William Petty, 1st Marquis of Lansdowne, 2nd Earl of Shelburne papers 1665-1885 Shelburne, William Petty, 1st Marquis of Lansdowne, 2nd Earl of, papers William L. Clements Library
referencedIn Washington Irving's Life of George Washington, Volume III, Miscellany, 1756-1807. Cornell University Library
creatorOf George Sackville Germain papers 1683-1785 Germain, George Sackville papers William L. Clements Library
referencedIn John Calef memorials and petitions 1766-1782 Calef, John, memorials and petitions William L. Clements Library
referencedIn Draper, Lyman Copeland, 1815-1891,. Draper manuscripts: Draper's historical miscellanies, 1720-1887. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
creatorOf Clinton, Henry, Sir, 1738?-1795. Henry Clinton papers, 1736-1850. William L. Clements Library
referencedIn Howe, Richard Howe, Earl, 1726-1799. ALS, 1776 August 11, Eagle off Staten Island [to] Lord George Germain. Independence Seaport Museum
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Copy of Ld. G. Germain's dispatch, no. 4 : recd. in London, Decr. 26th, 1778. Newberry Library
creatorOf Oswald, Richard, 1705-1784. Papers of Richard Oswald [manuscript], 1779-1781. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Cobb, Oliver W. (Oliver Warren), 1858-1949. The Convention troops [manuscript], 1938. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Henry Clinton papers 1736-1850 Clinton, Henry papers William L. Clements Library
referencedIn John Vaughan papers 1779-1781, 1784, 1789 Vaughan, John papers William L. Clements Library
referencedIn Skene, Philip Wharton, 1725-1810. Papers, 1765-1789. Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
referencedIn George Macartney papers [1765]-1800 1776-1787 Macartney, George papers William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Secret orders, 1776. Historical Society of Pennsylvania
creatorOf Oswald, Richard, 1705-1784. Memoranda of Richard Oswald, 1779-1781. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Washington Irving's Life of George Washington, Volume III, Miscellany, 1756-1807. Cornell University Library
creatorOf Arbuthnot, Marriott, 1711?-1794,. Hamond Naval Papers, 1766-1825. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. [Letter] 1779 Oct. 8, Whitehall [to] Gov. Dalling / Geo. Germain. Smith College, Neilson Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Autograph letters signed (3) : to Sir William Hamilton, ambassador to Naples, 1768 Mar. to 1770 Nov. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Rosengarten, J. G. (Joseph George), 1835-1921. The German allied troops in the North American war of independence, and related materials, ca. 1767-1893. University of Pennsylvania Library
creatorOf Pitt, William, Earl of Chatham, 1708-1778. Autograph letter signed : [London], to [Lord Sackville], 1758 Nov. 24. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Great Britain. Army. Regiment of Foot, 26th. Records of the British Army, 26th Regiment of Foot, 1751-1771. Library of Congress
referencedIn Thomas Smith papers 1730-1762 Smith, Thomas papers William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Autograph signature to letter : to the commissioners for restoring peace, 1781 July 3. Pierpont Morgan Library.
creatorOf Clinton, Henry, Sir, 1738?-1795. LS, 1779 Feb. 3, New York, N.Y., to Lord George Germain. Rosenbach Museum & Library
creatorOf William L. Clements Library. William Petty, 1st Marquis of Lansdowne, 2nd Earl of Shelburne papers, 1665-1885. William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Smith, Thomas, ca. 1707-1762. Thomas Smith papers, 1730-1762. William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. George Germain, Viscount Sackville, correspondence, 1779. Library of Congress
referencedIn Charles Townshend papers 1660-1804 1748-1767 Townshend, Charles papers William L. Clements Library
referencedIn Hills, John, surveyor. Plan of the peninsula of Chesopeak Bay : Compiled from actual surveys / by Iohn Hills assistant engineer, 1781. William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Papers, 1779. Duke University Libraries, Duke University Library; Perkins Library
referencedIn Thomas Addis Emmet collection, 1483-1876 (bulk:1700-1800) New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
creatorOf Sackville, George Germain, Viscount, 1716-1785. Autograph letter signed : Pall Mall, to Lord Bateman, 1759 Sept. 18. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Calef, John, 1725-1812. John Calef memorials and petitions, 1766-1782. William L. Clements Library
referencedIn Dorchester, Guy Carleton, Baron, 1724-1808. Papers of Guy Carleton, Baron Dorchester, 1774-1777. Library of Congress
referencedIn Hamond, Andrew Snape, Sir, 1738-1828. Papers of Sir Andrew Snape Hamond, 1766-1825. Library of Congress
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Brandywine, Battle of, Pa., 1777
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Lexington, Battle of, Lexington, Mass., 1775
Long Island, Battle of, New York, N.Y., 1776
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Birth 1716-01-26

Death 1785-08-26

English,

French,

Spanish; Castilian

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