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Re: Academic Burneys
Posted by: Peter Gawn (ID *****3306) Date: June 06, 2010 at 11:15:25
In Reply to: Re: Academic Burneys by Cynthia Comyn of 673

Thanks for your response.
I'm not related to the Burneys. Gosport is my home town & I became interested in the Academy when I discovered that no coherent account of it appears to have been published & that it seems to have been forgotten in Gosport - perhaps because no physical trace of it remains.
I started collecting information & now have a pretty fair idea of the history of the school from its start in 1791 to its end in 1904 & of the principle family members who owned and managed it until circa 1892 when it was sold to the then headmaster F.G. Johnson.

I've yet to find answers to several critical matters:
1. Wm Burney's lineage (b.c.1762-d.1832)
2. Why he settled in Gosport
3. Where did the start-up capital come from
4. How did he secure royal patronage
5. How he became a specialist in naval matters
6. The connection to the London Burneys.

With respect to the latter I was struck by your comment to Prof de Neumann that the Burneys are reputed to have come down from Scotland (Fanny Burney says Ireland). A brief bio of Wm Burney that I came across recently says that his family came from Worcestershire & moved to Penrith & then on to the Dumfries area. The presence of his father in Worcs suggests a possible connection to the London Burneys - Edward Francisco Burney was born there c. 1760 & Charles Burney Sr was born (1726) in Shrewsbury, some 40 miles from Worcester.

The Burney Centre at McGill is looking into the possible connection. If there is one it might help answer some of my "critical matters".

Wm B's parents settled on the Knockshinnoch farm in Irongray parish, Dumfriesshire, said to have been the principal Mcburnie property in the 17th century. A Thomas Mcburnie was living on nearby Larbreck farm in 1697. Both these properties are close to Crochmore House, whose history I've not been able to trace apart from the fact that it was at one time home to the Keswick family. Irongray parish is immediately to the west of Dumfries.

I live in a small town & my travelling days are over so my research possibilities are somewhat constrained.
I'll be interested in any comments you have on the foregoing,
Regards, Peter.

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