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National Maritime Museum

Blane Family


Reference code(s): GB 0064 BLA

Held at: National Maritime Museum

Title: Blane Family

Date(s): [1799-1891]

Level of description: Collection

Extent: 4 files

Name of creator(s): Blane | Sir | Gilbert | 1749-1834 | 1st Baronet | Physician of the Fleet
Blane | Arthur Rodney | 1834-1891 | Captain RN


Administrative/Biographical history:

Sir Gilbert Blane studied medicine in Edinburgh and, in 1779, sailed to the West Indies. It was during this and subsequent expeditions to the West Indies that he impressed upon the Admiralty the importance and the success of anti-scorbutic measures. He was appointed Physician Extraordinary to the Prince of Wales in 1785, the year in which he produced the first edition of his work on the diseases of seamen. From 1795 until 1803 he was one of the Commissioners for Sick and Wounded Seamen. See Christopher Lloyd ed., The Health of Seamen (Navy Records Society, 1965), pp. 132-211.

Arthur Rodney Blane, a grandson of Sir Gilbert Blane (q.v.), entered the Navy in 1848. In the Niger he served in the Second Chinese War, 1857 to 1859, and on receiving his commission as lieutenant in 1858, transferred to the Drake as her commander. He retired from active service in 1866 and was promoted to captain on the retired list in 1881.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Sir Gilbert Blane including memorials, notes and letters from Tsar Paul of Russia (1754-1801), 1799, the Prince Regent, later King George IV (1762-1830), 1802, Prince William Henry (1765-1837), undated, Spencer Perceval (1762-1812), 1809, Lord Palmerston (1784-1865), 1810, Sir Edward Pellew (later Viscount Exmouth) (q.v.), 1799, Earl St Vincent (q.v.), 1800, Lord Keith (q.v.), 1808, and other public figures, kept largely for their autograph value.

Papers of Capt Arthur Rodney Blane from some commissions for his early service, they concern Blane's activities in China. There are charts of Canton, orders from the Admiralty and copies of contemporary newspapers.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:

Conditions governing access:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue online at the: National Maritime Museum website .


Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:



Archivist's note: Edited by Sarah Drewery, Jun 2011.

Rules or conventions: Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions: 2010-08-26


Personal names
Blane | Arthur Rodney | 1834-1891 | Captain RN
Blane | Sir | Gilbert | 1749-1834 | 1st Baronet | Physician of the Fleet
Elphinstone | George Keith | 1746-1823 | 1st Viscount Keith | Admiral
George IV | 1762-1830 | King of Great Britain and Ireland
Jervis | John | 1735-1823 | Earl of St Vincent | Admiral of the Fleet
Paul I | 1754-1801 | Tsar of Russia
Pellew | Edward | 1757-1833 | 1st Viscount Exmouth | Admiral
Perceval | Spencer | 1762-1812 | statesman
Temple | Henry John | 1784-1865 | 3rd Viscount Palmerston | statesman
William IV | 1765-1837 | king of Great Britain and Ireland

Corporate names
Royal Navy

Guangzhou | Guangdong | China | East Asia