William Francis Maxwell Dumbreck was born 6th Nov
1790 at the Canongate, St Cuthberts Edinburgh. At
the age of 12 he joined the Royal Navy and he fought at the battle of Trafalgar
(21st October 1805) aged 15 on board H.M.S. Defence.
His rank then was
Midshipman, (a rank intermediate between naval cadet and sub-lieutenant).
He also served on board H.M.S. Victory at the battle of Corunna in 1809 and was
invalided out of the Royal Navy as Captain in 1814 at the age of 24.
In 1816 he married Jane Inglis of Lasswade Midlothian. On the 17th July 1817,
Jane gave birth to a son who was baptised on the 21st as William Francis
Maxwell (registered at the Canongate 685-3 Vol 11, page 505). This
first child died and two years later they had another son born 19th May 1819 also
called William Francis Maxwell Dumbreck.
**Jane died around 1820, and a newspaper article mentions that William had lost his
wife in the sinking of a Leith packet off the coast of Fife while on the way to join
him in Aberdeen where he was working as Chief Surveyor for the Government, and that
an infant William was the only survivor. ** Date to be confirmed.