Archive / Papers / Forbes Papers


Given by Sir John Forbes, Bart.

Small Collections Box 10

Typewritten copies of letters from John Forbes of Bombay, his brother Rev. George Forbes and his son Charles Forbes (later Sir Charles Forbes), as well as a few others, together with notes, covering the years 1786-1811. Also an obituary notice of Sir Charles Forbes 22 November 1849 together with other family notes. The originals are in the possession of Sir John Forbes.

The letters include the story of the kidnapping of Mary Ashburner. They are written from India, but include a good deal of comment on the political situation in Europe at the time.

Notes on John Forbes of Bombay, 1743-1821. pp, 1-2.

Genealogy No. IV. p. 3.

Notes on the family of Rev. George Forbes Younger of Bellabeg, b. 1738, d. 1799. pp. 4-6.

Letter from John Forbes in London, about to sail to Bombay, to his brother Charles at Lochell, December 1786: admonitory; note on John Forbes’ death. pp. 6-7.

Copy of a letter written at Lochell, 10 November 1786, from George Forbes, minister of Lochell, to his brother John Forbes (of Bombay). pp. 8-10.

George Forbes at Lochell, to his son Charles, merchant in Bombay, 3 December 1793. (Letter ends abruptly.) pp. 10-15.

Copy of a letter written at Lochell, 28 January 1794, from George Forbes, minister of Lochell, to Charles Forbes his son (in Bombay). pp. 16-20.

Charles Forbes in Bombay, to his father George Forbes, 26 October 1794; enumerates gifts being sent home and comments on them. pp. 21-23.

Charles Forbes in Bombay, to Mr. Mitchell of the ship Woodford, 26 October 1794; about the gifts which are being sent home on the Woodford, pp. 23-25.

Note on the death of Rev. George Forbes at Lochell, 1799. p. 25.

Note on Sir Charles Forbes, lst Baronet of Newe and Edinglassie, with a record of his children, and a list of the letters which are extant in the ledger at Newe. Extract from a letter written by Charles Forbes in Bombay to Dr. Guise at Surat, November 1794. pp. 26-31.

Charles Forbes in Bombay, to Captain McIntosh, 23 November 1794; about situation in Europe; success of the French; Lord Howe’s victory. pp. 32-33.

Letter written at Bombay 4th December 1794 by Charles Forbes to Alexander Gray, Esq; Sir R. Strachan’s engagement with French; comment on Bombay Courier and Madras Courier; comments on European and English political scene; comments on sealing letters; refers to Mr. Forbes. pp. 33-38.

Charles Forbes at Bombay, 23 December 1794 to James Findlay (also in India); dispute between the Peshwa and Nizam; Tippoo Sultan; Mauritius Station; appointments; refers to Mr. Forbes. pp. 38-41.

Charles Forbes in Bombay, 15 February 1795 to his father Rev. George Forbes at Lochell; the letter going overland via Suez and may reach his father by the end of May; refers to other letters; remittances sent home; refers to various individuals; Rohilla War ended; comments on European situation and on Pitt. pp. 41-44.

Charles Forbes from Bombay, 14 June 1795 to Captain Macintosh at Canton; giving European news with comments; its effects on trade and Dutch relations; the Calcutta and Allepo markets for Chinese goods. pp. 44-46.

Extract from a letter written by Charles Forbes in Bombay, 2 March 1796 to George Gordon at Calcutta family matters; purchase of a company by his brother in the Gordon Highlanders. pp. 46-47.

Note. There are no more letters until 1810; the next one relates the Ashburner incident, with long note on it.

Charles Forbes in Bombay, to his uncle John Forbes of Bombay, at his house 9 Fitzroy Square, 24 March 1810; refers to his mother’s death and his children in the care of his uncle, John Forbes; also refers to his wife’s return to recover her daughter, Mary Ashburner, kidnapped and sent to America; criticisms of members of his firm: Mr. Kinloch (who is malade imaginaire), Mr. Inglis; a business quarrel; insurance, a source of income; Sir Edward Pellew. pp. 50-60.

Letter from George Forbes, minister at Strathdon, written from London to Charles Forbes his brother, 7 October 1810 (received 8 June 1811); news of Mrs. Forbes (Charles’ wife on her way to America) and the children; news of his children. pp. 60-62.

James Forbes in London to Charles Forbes, 10 October 181.0; news of his meeting Mrs. Forbes, pp. 62-63.

Letter from George Forbes to his brother Charles Forbes, 1 January 1811; about meeting Mrs. Charles Forbes in London en route for America; remarks about children; remuneration by John Forbes to George for expenses ? £200 to cover him, his wife and son in London; finances discussed, in particular sending out money to India to be put into business for the interest; other family matters, and notes on the family. pp. 64-66.

Extract from a letter written in London by Miss Smith to Mr. Smith in Bombay, 16 May 1811; records that Mrs. Forbes recovered her child. p. 67.

Notes on Sir Charles Forbes’s life, and death on 20 November 1849 on his return to England; obituary notice in The Times 22 November 1849; the Address of the natives and inhabitants of India who subscribed to his statue, erected in the Town Hall, Bombay; the Address includes references to his lack of prejudice, and kindness, and his work for social equality, pp. 67-73.