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Charles Murray Cathcart


(2nd Earl of Cathcart; Lord Greenock)

1783 - 1859

Soldier and geologist. Educated at Eton, the son of General William Cathcart (1755 - 1843) who he succeeded as the Earl of Cathcart, and elder brother of Lieutenant-General Sir George Cathcart (1794 - 1854), Cathcart entered the army at the age of fifteen.

Cathcart served with distinction in the Mediterranean (1805-06) and became known by courtesy as Lord Greenock from 1807, when the title was given to his father, until he inherited the Earldom. He fought at Walcheren (1809), in the Peninsular Wars at Barossa, Salamanca and Vittoria (1810-12) and at Waterloo (1815), where three horses were shot from beneath him, his bravery earning him several decorations. For a time he was commander of the army in Scotland and Governor of Edinburgh Castle (1837-42).

Cathcart took command of the British forces in Canada at a time of great unrest between the British and the French and served as Governor General (1846-49). He returned to England and was promoted to the rank of General in 1854. He retired from the army in 1859 shortly before his death.

An enthusiastic amateur geologist, in 1841 Cathcart discovered the mineral which was named Greenockite in his honour.


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