DUNN, Thomas Russell (c1805-1866), Navy surgeon & administrator. 1/4 plate daguerreotype. SOLD

Product no.: ph0009

DUNN, Thomas Russell M.D., C.M. (c1805-1866), Royal Navy surgeon, and Inspector-General of Hospitals & Fleets. A quarter plate daguerreotype of a middle aged man in naval coat, seated by a table. On the table are 2 volumes of a book entitled on the spine Watson on Principles and Practice of Physic - Third Edition, and three other books entitled Paulus Aegineta. The plate is sealed and in excellent condition, and is mounted in a full (rather worn) leather case. On the reverse of the plate on the paper seals is a pencil inscription reading "Dr Dunn R.N."

Thomas Russell Dunn was born in Scotland about 1805 and at an early age entered the Royal Navy. One of the earliest references to his career is contained in an article in the New York Times of June 17th 1917, which under the title Napoleon's last days described in hitherto unpublished diary contains extracts from a surviving diary of Dunn compiled when his ship HMS Beaver visited St Helena in 1821. His name is found in the Navy List of 1824 as Assistant Surgeon, and he went on to take his medical degree at the University of Glasgow, graduating in 1828 (he was later to obtain his C.M. in surgery in 1860 from the same University). In 1835 he was surgeon on HMS Waverley. On 26th September 1842 Dunn married Janet Johnston in Glasgow, and on 25th May 1843 their only child Margaret Wingate Dunn was born. Dunn's name was immortalized in the naming of Dunns Nook on Vancouver Island, following his visit there in 1846 aboard HMS Fisgard.  The National Archives hold his medical and surgical journals while attached to HMS Queen for 1 October 1849 to 31 December 1850, which at the time was employed in the Mediterranean. In the 1850s Dunn was promoted as Deputy Inspector-General of Hospitals and Fleets, and in 1859 was additionally appointed an Honorary Surgeon to Her Majesty Queen Victoria. Dunn later attained the position of Inspector-General of Hospitals and Fleets, and in retirement died on September 18th 1866 at his home at Dunallan House, Bridge of Allan, Stirlingshire. The two sets of books in the photograph have publication dates of 1847 and 1848, so the daguerreotype probably dates to about 1849-1850.

Dunn's daughter Margaret Wingate Dunn married into the Platt family, other members of whom became related by marriage to the family of General Sir John Alexander Ewart (1821-1904). She died in 1896 in Brighton, Sussex.

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