National Records of Scotland

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Sir John Moore (1761-1809)

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Sir John Moore (1761-1809)

Army Officer

After a grand tour of Europe with his father and the duke of Hamilton, John Moore joined the British Army in 1776. He saw active service in the American War of Independence from 1778 to 1783. After the war he was elected Member of Parliament for the Linlithgow Burghs, a seat he held until 1790. In the following decade his unit was assigned to the Mediterranean, St Lucia in the West Indies (where he was briefly governor) and Ireland. He was wounded several times including the Siege of Calvi in 1794 where Horatio Nelson lost an eye. In 1803 he founded a camp for the training of light infantry at Shorncliffe on the south coast of England and advised on defences against a Napoleonic invasion. The following year he was appointed Knight Companion of the Bath and promoted to Lieutenant-General. Sir John Moore was mortally wounded at the Battle of Corunna on 16 January 1809. He was buried in the ramparts there and a monument was later erected over his grave. A memorial service is held annually at Shorncliffe on the anniversary of his death.

Birth in 1761

John Moore was born on 13 November 1761, the son of Dr John Moore and Jean Simson. The baptism entry in the Old Parish Register (OPR) for Glasgow is dated 16 November 1761 and names the witnesses (W) as James Simson and Dr John Gordon. The left margin has an annotation in a later hand: ‘Who gloriously fell at Corunna in the year 1809’.

Birth and baptism entry for John Moore

Birth and baptism entry for John Moore (38 KB jpeg)
National Records of Scotland, OPR 644-1/14, page 19