Secretaries 1660-1870

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Institute of Historical Research

Publication

Author

J.C. Sainty

Year published

1975

Supporting documents

Pages

34-37

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'Secretaries 1660-1870', Office-Holders in Modern Britain: Volume 4: Admiralty Officials 1660-1870 (1975), pp. 34-37. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=16654 Date accessed: 23 July 2014.


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Secretaries 1660-1870

The Secretary was the senior official of the Admiralty. (fn. 1) During the years 1684-9, when the powers and functions of the department were exercised directly by the crown, the Secretary was appointed by the crown by letters patent under the great seal with the title 'Secretary for the Affairs of the Admiralty'. (fn. 2) At other times he was designated simply 'Secretary' and was appointed by the Lord High Admiral or the Admiralty Board. (fn. 3) The office was held singly until 1694 when two joint Secretaries were appointed. (fn. 4) The office of one of the joint Secretaries was dispensed with in 1698 but revived in 1702. It was again dispensed with in 1705 when the office of Deputy Secretary was created. (fn. 5) Except during the years 1741-2 no joint Secretary was appointed thereafter. (fn. 6) In 1746 the additional business arising from the war led to the appointment of a Second Secretary who became sole Secretary on the death of his colleague in 1751. (fn. 7) In 1759 similar considerations again gave rise to the appointment of a Second Secretary who also became sole Secretary on the death of his colleague in 1763. (fn. 8) It was not until 1783 that the office of Second Secretary was established on a permanent basis. (fn. 9)

From Burchett's period of office (1694-1742) until the early nineteenth century it was the general rule for the Secretaries to be members of the House of Commons but to enjoy nevertheless a secure tenure which was largely unaffected by political changes. (fn. 10) However, in 1804 and again in 1806 Second Secretaries were displaced on political grounds. From 1807 it was accepted that the office of First Secretary should be held by a member of the Commons and that its tenure should be subject to the same considerations as that of other political members of the administration. From the same period it was understood that the office of Second Secretary should be non-parliamentary and held on a permanent tenure. (fn. 11) Nevertheless it was not until the end of the period covered by these lists that the terms First and Second Secretary began to be superseded by those of Parliamentary and Permanent Secretary. (fn. 12)

Between 1660 and 1664 the Secretary was entirely dependent on fees for his remuneration. In the latter year a salary of £500, payable by the Treasurer of the Navy, was made available by the crown in consideration of the abolition of certain of these fees. (fn. 13) In the case of the office of Secretary for the Affairs of the Admiralty (1684-9) it was provided that, when the fees arising from the issue of passes fell short of £2000 a year, the difference should be made up from public funds. (fn. 14) In 1694 the salary of the Secretary was fixed at £800 on the general abolition of the fees. A second salary of the same amount was provided while joint Secretaries were serving. (fn. 15) Burchett enjoyed, as Secretary, an additional allowance of £200 from the contingent fund while Prince George was Lord High Admiral. (fn. 16) In 1717 the fees were restored and in the following year provision was made for the Secretary to receive half the product for his own use. (fn. 17) On the formation of the Marine Department in 1755 the Secretary or First Secretary became its Secretary ex officio and was accorded a salary of £300 as such payable by the Paymaster of Marines. He also received all the fees arising in the Marine Department. (fn. 18) In 1800 the various forms of remuneration received by the First Secretary were replaced by a single salary of £3000, with an additional allowance of £1000 in time of war. (fn. 19) In 1815 the distinction between war and peace salaries was abolished and the salary of the First Secretary fixed permanently at the war level of £4000. (fn. 20) It was, however, reduced again to £3000 in 1818. (fn. 21) In 1831 it was fixed at £2000 with provision for an increase to £2500 after five years' service. (fn. 22)

The salary of the Second Secretary varied. On his appointment in August 1746 Clevland was granted £600 which was increased to £800 in the following October. (fn. 23) Stephens was also appointed at £600 in 1759, his salary being raised to £800 in 1761. (fn. 24) When the office was established on a permanent basis in 1783 the salary was fixed at £600, being raised to £800 in 1790. (fn. 25) From 1783 the Second Secretary was also Second Secretary of the Marine Department and received as such £200 payable by the Paymaster of Marines. (fn. 26) In addition to these salaries the Second Secretary also enjoyed a proportion of the office fees, his share being calculated on the basis of the Chief Clerk's salary of £400. (fn. 27) In 1800 the various forms of remuneration received by the Second Secretary were replaced by a single salary of £1500, with an additional allowance of £500 in time of war. (fn. 28) In 1815 the salary was fixed permanently at the war level of £2000. (fn. 29) It was reduced again to £1500 in 1818. (fn. 30) In 1831 it was fixed at £1000 with provision for an increase to £1500 after five years' service. (fn. 31) Baillie Hamilton was appointed on this basis in 1845 but was, in the event, allowed the increased salary from 1848. (fn. 32) His successors were each appointed at £1500 until the end of the period.

LISTS OF APPOINTMENTS
SECRETARIES AND FIRST SECRETARIES
1660 July Coventry, Hon. W.
1667 Sept. Wren, M.
1672 July Werden, Sir J.
1673 June Pepys, S.
1679 May Hayter, T.
1680 Feb. Brisbane, J.
1684 May Pepys, S.
1689 March Bowles, P.
1690 Jan. Southerne, J.
1694 Aug. Bridgeman, W.
1694 26 Sept. Bridgeman, W.
Burchett, J.
1698 24 June Burchett, J.
1702 20 May Burchett, J.
Clarke, G.
1705 25 Oct. Burchett, J.
1741 29 April Burchett, J.
Corbett, T.
1742 14 Oct. Corbett, T.
1751 30 April Clevland, J.
1763 18 June Stephens, P.
1795 3 March Nepean, E.
1804 21 Jan. Marsden, W.
1807 24 June Wellesley Pole, Hon. W.
1809 12 Oct. Croker, J. W.
1830 29 Nov. Elliot, Hon. G.
1834 24 Dec. Dawson, G. R.
1835 27 April Wood, C.
1839 4 Oct. More O'Ferrall, R.
1841 9 June Parker, J.
1841 10 Sept. Herbert, Hon. S.
1845 13 Feb. Lowry Corry, Hon. H. T.
1846 13 July Ward, H. G.
1849 21 May Parker, J.
1852 3 March O'Brien Stafford, S. A.
1853 6 Jan. Osborne, R. B.
1858 9 March Lowry Corry, Hon. H. T.
1859 30 June Paget, Lord C. E.
1866 30 April Baring, Hon. T. G.
1866 16 July Gordon Lennox, Lord H.
1868 22 Dec. Baxter, W. E.
SECOND SECRETARY
1746 1 Aug. Clevland, J.
1759 16 Oct. Stephens, P.
1783 13 Jan. Ibbetson, J.
1795 3 March Marsden, W.
1804 21 Jan. Tucker, B.
1804 22 May Barrow, J.
1806 10 Feb. Tucker, B.
1807 9 April Barrow, J.
1845 28 Jan. Baillie Hamilton, W. A.
1855 22 May Phinn, T.
1857 7 May Romaine, W. G.
1869 29 June Lushington, V.

Footnotes

1 For these offices generally, see Corbett MS, xiii pp. 180-94; James and Shaw, Admiralty Administration, 166-71, 182-3; G. F. James, 'Josiah Burchett, Secretary to the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty 1695-1742', Mariner's Mirror, xxiii (1937), 477-97; F. B. Wickwire, 'Admiralty Secretaries and the British Civil Service', Huntington Library Quarterly, xxviii (1964-5), 235-54.
2 Letters patent 10 June 1684 (C 66/3245).
3 In 1673 and 1694 the crown took an active interest in the appointment of the Secretary. See A Descriptive Catalogue of the Naval Manuscripts in the Pepysian Library, ed. J. R. Tanner ii (Navy Records Soc., xxvii, 1904), 1; Ehrman, Navy, 558 n.
4 Adm. 2/16 p. 414. Phineas Bowles had urged the appointment of a second Secretary in 1690 (Ehrman, Navy, 657-61).
5 SPB, i f. 1; Adm. 6/8 f. 201.
6 PC 2/96 pp. 442, 447-8, 455.
7 Adm. 3/55, 1 Aug. 1746.
8 Adm. 3/67, 16 Oct. 1759.
9 Adm. 3/96, 13 Jan. 1783.
10 3rd Rept. on Fees, 102.
11 Barrow, Autobiography, 254-5, 291-2, 298-9. See also p. 11.
12 On his appointment in 1869 Lushington was described as 'Permanent or Second Secretary' (Adm. 12/828, 29 June 1869). In the departmental estimates the terms 'Financial' and 'Permanent' were substituted for 'First' and 'Second' Secretaries in 1868 (HC 7 p. 13 (1867-8) xlv, 13; HC 10 p. 14 (1868-9) xxxviii, 14).
13 Letters of privy seal to Coventry 6 Sept. 1664 (MS Rawlinson A 185 f. 451). The grants of salaries to successive Secretaries were usually embodied in letters of privy seal until 1689.
14 Warrant 7 Aug. 1687 (MS Rawlinson A 177 f. 131).
15 Ehrman, Navy, 662-3.
16 Subsequently Burchett received the arrears of this allowance from the death of Prince George in 1708 until the end of the war in 1713 (PC 2/86 pp. 13, 26; Adm. 3/31, 5 Aug. 1717).
17 Order in council 31 July 1717 (PC 2/86 pp. 13, 26, 482); Adm. 3/31, 8 July 1718; 3rd Rept. on Fees, 96. While he was joint Secretary 1741-2 Corbett enjoyed half the Secretary's share of the fees in addition to the fees which he had previously been accorded as Deputy Secretary Adm. 3/45, 2 Dec. 1741 and 23 Feb. 1742).
18 Adm. 2/1152 pp. 134-5; 3rd Rept. on Fees, 97, 107, 116.
19 Order in council 15 Jan. 1800 (HC 138 p. 2 (1816) xiii, 170).
20 Order in council 21 June 1815 (HC 125 p. 1 (1816) xiii, 167).
21 Order in council 10 Feb. 1818 (PC 2/212 pp. 34-5).
22 Rept. of Select Committee on Reduction of Salaries 1831 (HC 322 p. 8 (1830-1) iii, 452); TM 15 April 1831 (HC 375 p. 3 (1830-1) vii, 495).
23 Adm. 3/55, 1 Aug. and 14 Oct. 1746.
24 Adm. 3/67, 16 Oct. 1759; Adm. 3/68, 9 June 1761.
25 Adm. 3/96, 13 Jan. 1783; Adm. 3/107, 19 May 1790.
26 Adm. 3/96, 13 Jan. 1783; 3rd Rept. on Fees, 97, 108.
27 Adm. 3/55, 1 Aug. 1746; Adm. 3/67, 16 Oct. 1759; 3rd Rept. on Fees, 108.
28 Order in council 15 Jan. 1800 (HC 138 p. 2 (1816) xiii, 170).
29 Order in council 21 June 1815 (HC 125 p. 1 (1816) xiii, 167).
30 Order in council 10 Feb. 1818 (PC 2/212 pp. 34-5).
31 Rept. of Select Committee on Reduction of Salaries 1831 (HC 322 p. 8 (1830-1) iii, 452); TM 15 April 1831 (HC 375 p. 3 (1830-1) vii, 495).
32 Adm. 12/442, 22 March 1845; Adm. 12/474, 26 Nov. 1847.