Humphrys genealogy

Genealogy research by Mark Humphrys.


Our common ancestors - Herbert - Contents

Pembroke House, London

Pembroke House, Privy Gardens, Whitehall, London.
London town house of the Earls of Pembroke.

Pembroke House was built by the 9th Earl of Pembroke (not then the Earl) in 1723-24, on the E (River Thames) side of Whitehall.
The 9th Earl had obtained a lease in 1717.
The site was formerly part of the great Palace of Whitehall which burned down in 1698.
Pembroke House had its own entrance lodge on the W (inland) side.
The back (E side) looked directly onto the River Thames.

The 9th Earl succ as Earl in 1733.
His son the 10th Earl of Pembroke was born at Pembroke House in 1734.
The 9th Earl died there in 1750.

Pembroke House was re-built 1756-59 by 10th Earl of Pembroke.
Mary Fitzwilliam (wife of 9th Earl and mother of 10th Earl) apparently died there 1769.
11th Earl of Pembroke died there in Oct 1827.
His nephew Rev. George Augustus Montgomery wrote a letter of Nov 1827 from there, just after his uncle's death.
The Victoria Embankment was built 1865 to 1870 out into the river, and there was now more land at the back (to the E of) Pembroke House. This was laid out as a garden.

Pembroke House was demolished 1938, but parts of it were saved.
The site is now the massive Ministry of Defence building (built in phases 1939-59).
The Ministry of Defence is an unusual building that has preserved inside it some of the former architecture of the site, including the 1514-16 wine cellar from the Palace of Whitehall.
The Ministry of Defence also preserves inside it 4 rooms saved from Pembroke House,
[Bradley and Pevsner, 2005] details these 4 rooms. They are "within the courtyard spaces on the third and fourth floors" and were "reassembled from parts stored in 1936". These rooms are called:

The balustrade of Pembroke House (presumably the rooftop one) was saved and is now at Queen's House, Greenwich.

Pembroke House, view from W (inland) side, showing entrance lodge and main building.
From Illustrated London News, 30 Dec 1854.
From here.

Extract from Letter of Nov 1827 from Rev. George Augustus Montgomery to his sister Elizabeth, written from Pembroke House just after the death of their uncle the 11th Earl of Pembroke.
See full size.

Riverfront of buildings on E side of Whitehall.
From "The Opening of Waterloo Bridge seen from Whitehall Stairs" by John Constable (painted 1832, depicts the opening of 1817).
The view is looking N up the river towards Waterloo Bridge. Whitehall Stairs was a dock just to the N of Pembroke House.
The picture shows the Prince Regent about to board the Royal barge at Whitehall Stairs.
Pembroke House may be the house at extreme left, to the left of the tree.
See larger and full size. From here.

Location in Whitehall

Plan of the great Palace of Whitehall in 1680. Up is W.
The palace almost entirely burned down in 1698.
Blue area is the site on which was built Pembroke House in 1723-24.
Later Victoria Embankment was built out into the river and there was more land below (to the E of) Pembroke House.
See original. From here.

Part of Whitehall Palace, from the river, before the fire of 1698.
Engraved by Wenceslaus Hollar (died 1677).
The Banqueting House is the large building in the centre background.
From University of Massachusetts. Image credit University of Toronto.

View of Whitehall from the river, late 17th century.
From University of Massachusetts. Image credit Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection.

View of Whitehall from the river, early 18th century.
It is unclear if the building in front of the Banqueting House is Pembroke House or Malmesbury House.
From University of Massachusetts. Image credit Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection.

A view of Whitehall, looking south, in 1740.
From Wikipedia.
The Banqueting House is the massive grey building on the left.
Pembroke House is now built, and would be behind the Banqueting House, not visible from this view.
See modern street view of same location.

The Privy Garden on map of 1746.
From section 7 of Sheet C2 of Rocque's Map of London, 1746.

"White Hall" (13) and "White Hall stairs" (14) on View of London by Buck, 1777 (first pub 1748).
See larger and full size and plan.
On display at Museum of London.

Privy Gardens on map of 1792-1799.

Privy Gardens on map of 1819.

Privy Gardens, Whitehall, London.
From map of 1827.

Privy Gardens was entirely cleared for the massive Ministry of Defence building, built between 1938 and 1959.
Nothing remains of Pembroke House or its entrance lodge.
The Banqueting House survives.
See Google maps (has satellite view and street view).

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