Hammond, Edmund
b. 1802-06-25
d. 1890-04-29
Edmund Hammond, permanent under-secretary of the British Foreign Office and first Baron of Kirkella, was born 25 June 1802, the third and youngest son of George Hammond and Margaret Allen. He attended Eton College from 1812 to 1815, and finished his education at Harrow in 1816. He enrolled at University College, Oxford, in 1820, and graduated in classics in 1823. He completed his MA in 1826 and remained connected to academia until 1846, first as a scholar and then as a fellow.1
Patroned by George Canning, a friend of his father's, Hammond was appointed a clerkship in the Foreign Office in April 1824. He was promoted to Permanent Under-Secretary in 1854. Hammond's most significant duties as Under-Secretary included maintaining extensive correspondence with British representatives abroad and advising the Secretary of State on policy decisions.2
Hammond wed Mary Frances, 3 January 1846, and they had three daughters together. Under Hammond, the Foreign Office abandoned aristocratic amateurism in favour of professional bureaucratism.3 Thus, on his retirement in 1873, Hammond became the first Foreign Office official to be raised to peerage, named Baron Hammond of Kirkella.4
He died in Menton, France, 29 April 1890.
  • 1. R. A. Jones, Hammond, Edmund,, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
  • 2. Ibid.
  • 3. Ibid.
  • 4. Ibid.
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