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Royal Naval Biography/Dickson, David John


A son of the late Admiral William Dickson, and nephew to the late Admiral Sir Archibald Dickson, Bart., both of whom died in the year 1803.

This officer was born at Sydenham House, near Kelso, N.B., Oct. 24th, 1790; and entered the navy as midshipman on board the Sceptre 74, commanded by his half-brother, the late Rear-Admiral Sir Archibald Collingwood Dickson, Bart, under orders for the East Indies, April 4th, 1803. In the following year he was removed to the Albion 74, Captain (now Admiral) John Farrier; and subsequently into the St. Fiorenzo frigate and Culloden 74, the latter ship bearing the flag of Sir Edward Pellew[1], commander-in-chief on that station. We next find him in the Orion, Captain Sir A. C. Dickson, at the reduction of Walcheren; and shortly afterwards (Nov. 1809) receiving a commission appointing him lieutenant of that ship, in which he continued, principally on the Baltic station, until paid off at Plymouth, in Jun. 1814. During the first seven years of the peace he served in several guard-ships and sloops of war; and subsequently commanded the Hound, Basilisk, and Sylvia cutters, employed in protecting the revenue. From the latter vessel he was promoted to his present rank Sept. 20th, 1827.

Commander Dickson married, Aug. 21st, 1828, Hester, youngest daughter of the late Rev. William Rawlins, M.A., rector of Teversal, co. Notts. His surviving brothers are. Colonel Sir Alexander Dickson, K.C.B., K.C.H., Deputy-Adjutant General Royal Artillery, Aide-de-Camp to the King; and Captain Rowland Cotton Dickson, H.E.I.C. artillery. His sister, Jane, married her first cousin, Captain Archibald Dickson, R.N., son of General John Dickson.

  1. Afterwards Viscount Exmouth.