Dorothy Walpole

Is your surname Walpole?

Research the Walpole family

Dorothy Walpole's Geni Profile

Share your family tree and photos with the people you know and love

  • Build your family tree online
  • Share photos and videos
  • Smart Matching™ technology
  • Free!

Related Projects

About Dorothy Walpole

Lady Dorothy Walpole Born September 18, 1686 died March 29, 1726 in the afterlife she is known as The Brown Lady of Raynham Hall


The Brown Lady of Raynham Hall is a ghost which reportedly haunts Raynham Hall in Norfolk. It became one of the most famous hauntings in Great Britain when the image of the 'Brown Lady' was captured by photographers from Country Life magazine who were photographing the staircase in 1936. The 'Brown Lady' is so named because of the brown brocade dress it is claimed she wears.

According to legend, the 'Brown Lady of Raynham Hall' is the ghost of Lady Dorothy Walpole (1686-1726), the sister of Robert Walpole, generally regarded as the first Prime Minister of Great Britain. She was the second wife of Charles Townshend, who was notorious for his violent temper. The story says that when Townshend discovered that his wife had committed adultery with Lord Wharton he punished her by locking her in her rooms in the family home, Raynham Hall. According to Mary Wortley Montagu, Dorothy was in fact entrapped by the Countess of Wharton. She invited Dorothy over to stay for a few days knowing that her husband would never allow her to leave it, not even to see her children. She remained at Raynham Hall until her death in 1726 from smallpox.


Brown Lady of Raynham Hall

view all

Dorothy Walpole's Timeline

September 18, 1686
Age 28
October 25, 1719
Age 33
March 29, 1726
Age 39
Rainham, UK