MONTAGU, William Augustus (c.1785-1852).

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1790-1820, ed. R. Thorne, 1986
Available from Boydell and Brewer



1818 - 1820

Family and Education

b. c.1785, illegit. s. of John Montagu*, 5th Earl of Sandwich. m. 26 Aug. 1823, Anne, da. of Sir George William Leeds, 1st Bt., of Croxton Park, Cambs., s.p.

Offices Held

Entered RN as 1st class vol. 1796, lt. 1804, cdr. 1805, capt. 1807, r.-adm. 1841, v.-adm. 1851.

CB 8 Dec. 1815, KH 5 Oct. 1830, KCH 17 Jan. 1832, KB 22 Feb. 1832.

Commr. of stamps 1823-34.

Mayor, Huntingdon 1819-20.


Montagu distinguished himself at sea, and in command of a naval brigade landed on the Ile de France in 1812.1 He was the only connexion of the Sandwich family eligible when a vacuum occurred in their borough of Huntingdon in 1818. He was then manager of the Sandwich estates during the minority of the 7th Earl.2 He gave a silent support to government, voting with them against Tierney’s censure motion, 18 May 1819, and for the foreign enlistment bill, 10 June. On 29 Oct. he was appointed to the Halifax station (he was in any case precluded by his mayoralty from seeking re-election in 1820).3 On 16 Dec. he requested Lord Liverpool, who had ‘on several occasions’ expressed a desire to serve him, to induce Lord Melville to have him employed ‘in the conveyance of any specie which it may be in the contemplation of his Majesty’s government to import ... either from Spanish America or from our own colonies’. Melville was unable to comply:

Captain Montagu is to convey Sir James Kempt to Halifax and Lord Dalhousie from thence to Quebec, and as the Phaeton (Captain Montagu’s ship) will be afterwards employed on the North American station, it is not likely that any opportunity will occur for the conveyance of specie in that ship.4

He died 6 Mar. 1852 in his 67th year.5

Ref Volumes: 1790-1820

Author: R. G. Thorne


  • 1. O’Byrne, Naval Biog. ii. 774.
  • 2. Ld. Sandwich, Hinchingbrooke, 49 (where Montagu’s birth date is given as 1787).
  • 3. Hunts RO, Sandwich mss G11, Suffield to Sandwich, 9 Feb. 1820.
  • 4. Add. 38282, ff. 265, 267.
  • 5. Gent. Mag. (1852), i. 407.