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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 ACC/0867
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Full title: BERKELEY (EARL OF)
Date(s): 1805-1960
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 0.32 linear metres (13 documents).
Name of creator(s): Berkeley | family | of Gloucestershire


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Berkeley family's seat was at Berkeley Castle, Gloucestershire built in 1153 by Lord Maurice Berkeley. Lord Berkeley of Stratton (died 1678) ran the Duke of York's household and built himself a magnificent London house in Piccadilly. His descendants laid out Berkeley Square in the grounds. In 1679 George Berkeley was made first Earl of Berkeley by King Charles II.

The fifth Earl of Berkeley, Frederick Augustus (1745-1810) took Mary Cole, a butcher's daughter as his mistress. In 1796 they married, Mary having borne the earl five children and later that year their legitimate son Thomas Moreton was born. Mary was anxious about the legitimacy of her adored eldest son William Fitzharding (1786-1857). In 1799 she and the earl forged the Berkeley parish register with a false entry for a secret marriage 1785 to make all their children legitimate. On the death of the earl in 1810, the Berkeley Peerage Case was heard in the House of Lords and in 1811 the earldom passed to Thomas Moreton. In 1841 William Fitzharding was given the title Earl Fitzhardinge.

The family held estates throughout England.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of the Berkeley family including plans of family estates in St George Hanover Square, Cranford, Harlington, and Hillingdon; and pedigree of the Earls of Berkeley and the Barony of Fitzhardinge.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

ACC/0867/001 to 013.

Conditions governing access:

These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information are subject to access restrictions under the UK Data Protection Act, 1998.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to this collection rests with the depositor.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Records deposited in June 1964.

Allied Materials

Related material:

See also ACC/0530 and ACC/2599. Original records referenced ACC/0530 and ACC/2599 are now held at Berkeley Castle, Gloucestershire GL13 9QL where there are related collections.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

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:
Records prepared May to September 2011.

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