National Records of Scotland

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Dr John Rogerson (1741-1823)

Dr John Rogerson (1741-1823)


John Rogerson studied at the University of Edinburgh before moving to St Petersburg in 1766, where he passed the examination to practise medicine. By 1769 he had been appointed court physician. Seven years later he was elected to the Imperial Academy of Sciences and, in the same year, to the Royal Society in London for his development of links between Russia and Britain. He worked for Catherine the Great and her family, and in 1816 attended his fellow Scot, Sir Samuel Greig, Father of the Russian Navy, at Kronstadt. John Rogerson later returned to Scotland and an estate near Moffat in Dumfriesshire where he died in 1823.

Birth in 1741

John Rodgerson was born on 22 October 1741, the lawful son (LS) of Samuel Rodgerson and Janet Johnstoun in Lochbrow. The entry in the Old Parish Register (OPR) for Johnstone in the county of Dumfriesshire gives the date of baptism as '26th of said month'. The witnesses were William Halliday and James French. The standard spelling of his surname is Rogerson. Selection of the 'variant surnames' option on ScotlandsPeople quickly identified the alternative.

Birth and baptism entry for John Rogerson  

Birth and baptism entry for John Rogerson (29 KB jpeg)
National Records of Scotland, OPR 832/1, page 4 

Testament of 1823

The will and testament of John Rogerson Esquire, physician at Wamphray, was registered at the sheriff court in Dumfries. This extract provides the date of death: 'John Rogerson Esq, Physician to His Imperial Majest, the Emperor of All the Russias' died on 21 December 1823.

Testament of John Rogerson showing his date of death

He appointed 'John Wilson and Alexander Rogerson, both now of St Petersburg, merchants', as executors and administrators for 'every kind of property and effects I may have in Russia at the time of my demise'. 

Testament of John Rogerson showing appointment of executors for Russian assets

Details from testament of John Rogerson (48 and 53 KB jpegs)
National Records of Scotland, SC15/41/3, pages 695-699