Robert Emslie, SV/PROG

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Robert Emslie, SV/PROG

Birthdate: (67)
Birthplace: Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Death: October 11, 1838 (67)
Grahamstown, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Immediate Family:

Son of Robert Emslie and Jane Emslie
Husband of Sarah Emslie, SM/PROG and Jane Emslie
Father of Jacob Greasley Emslie; Isabella Wilbur Emslie; Elizabeth Kenward Long; Sarah Gordon Hayes; William Kenward Emslie and 9 others

Occupation: Weaver, 1820 Settler
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Robert Emslie, SV/PROG

1820 British Settler


Robert Emslie (48), Weaver and army pensioner, together with his wife Sarah Greasley (34) and 3 children, were members of Cock's Party of 91 Settlers on the Weymouth.

Party originated from Oxfordshire.

Departed London, 7 January 1820. Arrived Table Bay, Cape Town on 16 April 1820. Final Port - Algoa Bay, Port Elizabeth 15 May 1820.

Area Allocated to the Party : Green Fountain on the Rufane River

Children :

  • Elizabeth Emslie 7
  • Sarah Emslie 5
  • William Emslie 3

Death Notice – Cape Archives, S.A. No 1826/32/5 Robert Emslie, born Aberdeen; Parents unknown, age 67, agriculturist, widower, date 11/10/1838, Grahamstown. The only property he left, Cocks Party Subdivision No 14, and portion of Lot No 17. Born 1771.

Robert Emslie: A register of the births and deaths of the children since the marriage of Robert and Sarah Emslie

  • 1st Jacob Greasley Emslie born 6th died 7th 1809
  • 2nd Isabella Wilbur Emslie born 6th died 23rd October 1811 at Jermany
  • 3rd Elizabeth Kenward Emslie born 15 th March 1812 at Nottingham. Married 26 May 1829 to J D Long
  • 4th Sarah Gordon Emslie born 8th March 1814
  • 5th William Kenward Emslie born 23 July 1816 at Hull Yorkshire
  • 6th James Emslie born 8th April 1818 at Hull Yorkshire, Died 23rd October 1819, buried in St Abraes, London
  • 7th Jane Gordon Emslie born 16th June 1820 at Charlestown S.A.
  • 8th George Gordon Emslie born 31st July 1822 at Charlestown S.A.
  • 9th Henry Emslie born 2nd July 1824. Died buried in Grahamstown S.A.
  • 10th Mary Anne Emslie born 5th June 1826 at Grahamstown S.A.
  • 11th Charles Emslie born 29th May 1828 at Grahamstown S.A.
  • 12th Frederick Robert Emslie born 20th May 1830 at 6am at Charlestown S.A. Died 27th March 1837.

Signed by Robert Emslie.

Settler Letters: Robert Emslie's correspondence

Transcribed by Millicent Emslie from CO48/42 at the National Archives in Kew, London 57 Gibsens Street Foundry Hull 30th August 1819 The Humble Petion of Robert EMSLIE, an out Pensioner of Chelsea at 2/3 d pr Diem Humbly sheweth That your petioner hath aplyed to the Board of Chelsea for permission to receive his pension at the Cape of Good Hope and hath received permission accordingly, Should your Lordship be pleased to grant permission to your Petitioner to Emigrate to that place with his familie, viz Wife and 4 Children under 8 years of age – 2 Sons and 2 Daughters, your humble petitioner prays for free passage for self and family – as also such further allowances as your Lordship may think proper to grant, to him, your petioner having Served H.M. 31 Years and upwards 21 of which he was a noncommissioned officer in the 75th & 76th Regiment of foot your petioner having a pension as above, which will be paid by the Company General at the Cape. Shall he be oblidged to Deposit same as thoes who are not pensioners also will aney Transport be sent to this port as ther is others, similary Cir*****stanced, praying also for your Lordships permission: an answer to this will answer all other Enquirers and be thankfully received by an old Soldier who for the welfare of His Majestys Government will Ever pray as in Duty bound


late Serjeant 75th and 76th Regt of Foot

[attached to this letter]

Copy of a leter from Joseph LYNN Esq.

Royal Hospital Chelsea 26 Augt 1819

In Reply to your petion of the 9th Inst praying to be alowed to receive your pension at the Cape of good hope, I am to inform you that the Commissionof this Hospital have been pleased to grant you ther permission and that your transmitting to this office the particulays of having procured a passage stating the time when you are to Embark with the place at which you intend to reside, the necessary directions will be forwarded to the Commissary General at the Station, to whom you must apply on your arrival, for the payment of your pension accordingly &c &c signed

Joseph LYNN

Extract, from Major Genl GORDON’s letter Cork 1st Augt


EMSLIE, you say that £15 will be asked as a Deposite for your familie to be returned at or soon after your Landing at the Cape I will advance the money when I know to where it is to be paid. Signed Ben GORDON

PS Could I be permitted to proceed without Depositing this money, I would not wish to put the General to such expense as I think my pension would be sufficient to help me.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 72

Gibsons Street, Foundry, Hull

16th Augt 1819

Hon Sir,

I humbly ask your forgiveness for my freedome in thus addressing a Gentleman to whom I am a stranger - when you will have consiedred my case, which I trust you will have the goodness to do. I hope you will favour us with your advice having petioned Earle BATHURST on 30th Inst as you have seen and received his answer thro your honor. - I endavoured to fiend 9 mor families wanting to Emigrate to the Cape, but only one could I fiend that could pay the deposit money and were I again to petition his Lordship with only two or three families would I am afraid incur his displeasure, and for us to come to London, and break up our homes, and not be permitted to proceed, would be certain ruin to our small families. in concidring the above I have taken the liberty of praying for your kiend assistance, by letting me know if it would be proper for us to com or not, and whatever you think would tend must likely to favour our obtaining liberty of proceeding this present season to the Cape of Good Hope. Your favourable answer will be thankfully received and add greatly to the happiness of my small familie who joins with me in asking your parden for this freedom.

I am Honored Sir

Your very humble Servant


Late Serjeant 76 Regt



Foundry Hull Yorkshire

10th Octr 1819

My Lord,

We - The undersigned most humbly pray your forgivness for thus troubling you but having seen an advertisement in the Liverpool paper of a Messrs Whitley and Co for pepole willing to Emigrate to the Colony of the Cape of Good Hope stating that the person so advertising hath Governments approbation for so doing as only 3 families from this place (that are known of) are willing to go and pay the deposit money we humbly pray your Lordship to be so good as to accquaint us whether or not we should be acting proper in going to Liverpool and paying the Deposit money required by the Circular for our families in to ther hands. Your answer will be thankfully received by your very humble and obedient Servants.





South African Settlers

  • Emslie, Robert
  • Last Name: Emslie
  • First Name: Robert
  • Date of Birth: 1772
  • Place of Birth: Aberdeen, Scotland
  • Parents – Father: Robert Emslie
  • Parents – Mother: Jane Villett
  • Spouse: Sarah Greasley b. 1786 Harwich, Essex, England, d. 5 Jul 1831 Port Frances, Cape.
  • Marriage Date: 28 Mar 1809
  • Marriage Place: Harwich, Essex, England
  • Date of Death: 11 Oct 1838
  • Place of Death: Grahamstown, Cape

Notes: Cock’s party of 1820 settlers. IGI. Robert enlisted at 18 with the 75th Foot (Gordon Highlanders) and 16 years later transferred to the 76th Foot for 7 years, discharged because of gunshot wounds in India. DN 1826.1/2/1853, 100/1890, 2273/1889, 1036/1893, 1118/1893.


  • Jacob Greasley b. 6 Dec 1809 Harwich, Essex, d. 7 Dec 1809
  • Isabella Villett b. 8 Oct 1810 Germoy Nelland, England d. 23 Oct 1811
  • Elizabeth Kenward b. 15 Mar 1812 Nottingham, England marr. 26 May 1829 James Darrington Long, d. 14 Jan 1890 Hope Fountain, Cape (13 children)
  • Sarah Gordon b. 8 Mar 1814 Nottingham, m. abt 1835 Mr. Hayes, d. 25 Sep 1889 Bathurst (11 children)
  • William Kenward b. 23 Jul 1816 chr. 11 Aug 1816 Sculcoates, Yorks. marr. 10 Oct 1842 Cape to Amelia Jane Norman, dau. of Wm. Norman (she d. 4 Apr 1878) and he d. 1 May 1894 Seven Fountains, Cape (8 children)
  • James b. 8 Apr 1818 chr. 10 May 1818 Sculcoates, Yorks. d. 23 Oct 1819
  • Jane Gordon b. 16 Jun 1820 chr. 24 Sep 1820 Port Frances, Cape, m. abt. 1842 John Richmond Wilmot and d.25 Apr 1888 at Springvale (several children)
  • George Gordon b. 31 Jul 1822 Port Frances m. abt 1849 Elizabeth Jakins, and d. 3 Jun 1895 (4 sons 3 dau.)
  • Henry Emslie b. 31 Jul 1822 Port Frances, d. 2 Jan 1824 Grahamstown
  • Mary Anne b. 5 Jun 1826 Grahamstown m. abt 1846 Mr. Duffy
  • Charles b. 29 May 1828 Port Frances, m. abt 1853 Maria de Koning (one son John Richard Emslie)
  • Frederick Robert b. 20 May 1830 Port Frances, d. 27 Mar 1837.

From: "Graham Dickason" <> Subject: EMSLIE FAMILY REGISTER Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2001 23:27:21 +0200

An Emslie Family Reunion was held at Grahamstown in December 2000. Over 300 people attended the events spread over 3 days. The National Emslie Reunion Committee organised a program comprising a welcoming cocktail party & heritage display at the Monument ; tours to the historical villages of Salem & Seven Fountains, the latter where Emslie v Emslie cricket teams competed at the SF Sports Club ; and a memorial service at the Commemoration Methodist Church in Grahamstown.

The Emslie Family Register, compiled tirelessly by Gloria Emslie over some 30 years, was published specially for the reunion & launched at the gathering by Ms. Liz Esmeide of the East Cape Genealogical Society.

Robert Emslie was born in 1771 in Aberdeen, Scotland, son of Robert Emslie & Jane Gordon ( Duchess of Gordon ). Robert enlisted at the age of 18 in the 75th. Foot Gordon Highlanders. At this time he married Jane Villet. They had 2 children, Letta b. 1790 & Robert b. 1792 at Harwich, Essex. There is no record of what happened to these children or his wife. It is presumed they died while he was with his regiment in India. On his return to England & as a widower, Robert married Sarah Greasley on 28 March 1809 at Harwich. In mid-January 1820, Robert & Sarah together with their family, emigrated to the Cape Colony with William Cock's Oxfordshire party of settlers. Robert & Sarah had 12 children altogether, although only 3 sons & 4 daughters were to grow to adulthood. These were -

  • Elizabeth Kenward Emslie m. James Dorrington Long,
  • Sarah Gordon Emslie m. Samuel Robert Hayes,
  • William Kenward Emslie m. Amelia Norman,
  • Jane Gordon Emslie m. John Wilmot,
  • George Gordon Emslie m. Elizabeth Jakins,
  • Mary Anne Emslie m. Samuel Ebenezer Duffey,
  • Charles Gordon Emslie m. Charlotte de Koning

There are in the year 2000 some 400 descendants of Robert & Sarah. Other than Emslie's themselves, significant related families are : Austin, Bradfield, Cloete, Dickason, Dixon, Duffey, Hayes, Long, McEwan, Scheepers & Wilmot.

The book, Robert Emslie 1820 Settler & Family Register, is available from Gloria Emslie at R250 per copy plus postage. Contact Gloria Emslie at Telephone & Fax 046 648 1843 or write P. O. Box 195 Kenton-on-Sea 6191.

Left Portsmouth England on the 7th January 1820 bound for the Eastern Cape, South Africa. British 1820 Settler, Cocks party on the Weymouth. 75th Regiment of Foot (the 1st Battalion of the Gordon Highlanders)

view all 18

Robert Emslie, SV/PROG's Timeline

Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Age 19
Age 21
Harwich, Essex, England
December 6, 1809
Age 38
October 6, 1811
Age 40
March 15, 1812
Age 41
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England UK
March 8, 1814
Age 43
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England UK
July 23, 1816
Age 45
Hull, Yorkshire, England UK
April 8, 1818
Age 47
Hull, Yorkshire
June 16, 1820
Age 49