Nelson & His World

Discussion on the life and times of Admiral Lord Nelson
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 Post subject: Peter Parker's Grandfather?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2015 9:22 pm 
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Hello all :)

I've come across a list of names of men that Nelson had written out in 1804, that had been recommended by various people for promotion, and there's this entry which has intrigued me:

"Peter Parker to get both the steps as fast as possible. His Grandfather made me Every thing that I am."

Can anyone shed any light on this for me? :)

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 Post subject: Re: Peter Parker's Grandfather?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2015 10:14 pm 
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Peter Parker's grandfather was Admiral Sir Peter Parker who became a friend and patron of Nelson when he served in the West Indies. Both Parker and his wife Margaret were very fond of Nelson and remained attached to him throughout his life. Sir Peter was one of the chief mourners at Nelson's funeral. His grandson also went on to have a distinguished naval career, having 'risen rapidly through the ranks' so Nelson's patronage clearly helped:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sir_Peter ... nd_Baronet

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 Post subject: Re: Peter Parker's Grandfather?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 5:21 pm 
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Thanks Anna :) I hadn't really realised that Admiral Parker's influence had such a deep and long-lasting effect on Nelson - to say he "made me Every thing that I am" is a very strong sentiment.

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 Post subject: Re: Peter Parker's Grandfather?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 10:53 pm 
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Yes Vicky, but it wasn't just sentiment. Parker secured for Nelson the two most vital promotions in the life of any naval officer - namely from lieutenant to master and commander (of the brig HMS Badger) on 8 December 1778. and then to post-captain 6 months later on 11 June 1779. Nelson was talking about specific acts and not just example or inspiration. The word 'influence' - which you use - is very apt, but then of course it meant the favoritism or string pulling which underpinned the whole of Georgian society. (I cannot alas think of equivalent modern terms free from the pejorative flavour which these words now carry).

Brian


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 Post subject: Re: Peter Parker's Grandfather?
PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2015 6:05 pm 
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Vicki,

Both of the promotions that Brian mentioned, were of course the same that Nelson was pressing for Parker's grandson – lieutenant to commander (the prefix 'master' had been dropped in 1794) and from commander to post captain. Unfortunately it does not seem as though Nelson saw him made either, since Parker appears to have left the Victory before his promotion to commander and he was not 'made post', as the expression was, until after Trafalgar.

In a letter (Nelson – The New Letters, Colin White and dated Victory 4th August, 1804) from Nelson to his grandfather, Nelson writes to the effect that he was sad to lose the young Parker from the ship. He had hoped to see him made 'Both a Commander and Post', but was 'deprived of one step and maybe of the other.'

Peter Parker had Joined the RN in 1798 aged thirteen and his promotion seems to have been fast. Normally a Midshipman had to serve for six years before taking the first hurdle, the examination for lieutenant at about nineteen. Parker subsequently passed for lieutenant, but it would appear he only briefly held that rank, since he was promoted to commander in the same year, 1804. It would seem this promotion might have some connection with the order of First Lord of the Admiralty (Middleton, I believe) to advance the sons of naval officers to positions of command.

Brian, perhaps you know more about this?

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 Post subject: Re: Peter Parker's Grandfather?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2016 4:57 pm 
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Starhawk wrote:
Thanks Anna :) I hadn't really realized that Admiral Parker's influence had such a deep and long-lasting effect on Nelson - to say he "made me Every thing that I am" is a very strong sentiment.


Wow! That's really amazing, I didn't have that perception... Such affection in just one sentence :)


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