George Robert Dawson

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George Robert Dawson
Financial Secretary to the Treasury
In office
28 January 1830 – 24 November 1830
MonarchGeorge IV
William IV
Prime MinisterThe Duke of Wellington
Preceded byThomas Frankland Lewis
Succeeded byThomas Spring Rice
Personal details
Born24 December 1790
Castledawson, County Londonderry
Died3 April 1856 (1856-04-04) (aged 65)
Political partyTory
Spouse(s)Mary Peel
Alma materChrist Church, Oxford

George Robert Dawson (24 December 1790 – 3 April 1856), was an Anglo-Irish Tory politician.

Background and education[edit]

Dawson was born at Castledawson, County Londonderry, Ireland, the son of Arthur Dawson, who represented Banagher, Midleton and Newtownards in the Irish Parliament, and Catherine Tyrone. He was educated at Harrow and Christ Church, Oxford, where he became friends with Robert Peel, whose sister Dawson later married. He was called to the Bar at Lincoln's Inn in 1811.

Political career[edit]

In 1812 Dawson served as Peel's private secretary during Peel's tenure as Chief Secretary for Ireland. He was elected Member of Parliament for County Londonderry in 1815, upon the death of the incumbent Member, William Ponsonby.[1] He served under Lord Liverpool as Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department from 1822 to 1827 and under the Duke of Wellington as Financial Secretary to the Treasury from 1828 to 1830. In 1830 he was returned to Parliament for Harwich, a seat he held for two years,[2] and sworn of the Privy Council. He again held office as First Secretary of the Admiralty under Peel from 1834 to 1835. From 1841 to 1850 he served as Commissioner and Deputy Chairman of Customs.

At Derry, in 1828, Dawson made an important speech in which he advocated Catholic emancipation; the following year, under the Tory government of the Duke of Wellington, the Roman Catholic Relief Act 1829 was made law.


Dawson married Mary Peel, daughter of Sir Robert Peel, 1st Baronet, on 9 January 1816. He died in 1856 leaving five children, including Robert Peel Dawson, also an MP.


External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Hon. William Ponsonby
Alexander Stewart
Member of Parliament for County Londonderry
With: Alexander Stewart 1815–1818
Alexander Robert Stewart 1818–1830
Succeeded by
Theobald Jones
Sir Robert Bateson, Bt
Preceded by
J. C. Herries
Sir William Rae, Bt
Member of Parliament for Harwich
With: J. C. Herries
Succeeded by
J. C. Herries
Christopher Thomas Tower
Political offices
Preceded by
Henry Clive
Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department
Succeeded by
Spencer Perceval
Preceded by
Thomas Frankland Lewis
Financial Secretary to the Treasury
Succeeded by
Thomas Spring Rice
Preceded by
George Elliot
First Secretary of the Admiralty
Succeeded by
Charles Wood