Show Navigation

News & Events

Napoleon, Nelson and The Knight - 2011 Foyer exhibition

Saturday 5 February until Saturday 31 December

Discover the story of Sir Pulteney Malcolm, one of the Four Knights of Eskdale.

Sir Pulteney played a series of enigmatic and intriguing roles in some of the most momentous events of the 18th and 19th centuries.  He served under Admiral Nelson in the wars against France, but he missed the Battle of Trafalgar by a few days.

In 1814, during Britain’s war with America, he convoyed the detachment that burned the public buildings of Washington, including the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives.  As a young man he began a lifelong friendship with the Duke of Wellington.  He visited the Duke on the day of the Battle of Waterloo but missed the battle, leaving before it began. 

With a curious irony, he was responsible for guarding Napoleon during his final days on St Helena, and these two men also developed a close friendship.

In 1804 Sir Pulteney was serving on HMS Renown – with a life story like this he could well have been the model for C S Forrester’s fictional Hornblower character!