CollectionPrincess Mary
Record TypeCorrespondence
TitleCorrespondence of Princess Elizabeth and Princess Mary, later Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh, with Mrs Adams
Date8 December 1777-6 April [?1845]
DescriptionThis series has not been catalogued in detail but is thought to contain documents relating to subjects such as the Duke of Cumberland's marriage, the establishments of some of the younger princes, Princess Mary's relationships with her servants, in particular Mrs Adams (nee Dacres), Princess Amelia's health and illness and George IV's regency and reign.
Extent374 documents
Admin HistoryAnna Maria Adams, née Dacres, (c. 1752-1830), was the daughter of Richard Dacres, an ex-secretary to the garrison at Gibraltar, and Mary Dacres (née Bateman) in Middlesex.

Anna Maria Dacres married William Adams in 1774, living with him in Devon. William Adams went on to have a sucessful political career, including acting as MP for Plympton Erle (1796-1801) and Totnes (1810-1811), as well as the Mayor of Totnes (1780-1881, 1780-1789, 1797-1798).

Her sister Mary Dacres had served as dresser to the Princess Royal and Princess Augusta, and Anna Maria Adams was employed as a wet-nurse at the birth of Princess Mary in 1776, caring for her for eighteen months. Some sources suggest that she also acted as wet-nurse for Princess Amelia, and then lady-in-waiting for Princess Mary. This later employment would certainly explain why they kept up such an extended and regular correspondence.

Anna Maria went on to have four children, two of whom have correspondence in this collection; Anna Maria Fulford (née Dacres Adams) (GEO/ADD/12/2/294), and Louisa Adams (GEO/ADD/12/2/110-112). GEO/ADD/12/2/365 was written by Elizabeth Dacres Adams, wife of Anna Maria Adams' son William Dacres Adams.
Custodial HistoryThis collection (excluding GEO/ADD/12/2/371- 376) consists of correspondence from Princess Elizabeth and Mary, Duchess of Gloucester as both Princess and Duchess to her wet-nurse Mrs Adams, among some other correspondence collected by Mrs Adams. This is a separate accession from the rest of the Mary correspondence.
This collection was given to the Royal Archives in 1953 by descendants of the Adams family. At the time they were held at Kent County Hall, where Dr Felix Hall wrote to Professor Arthur Apsinall (an academic decoted to the Georgian period, and with strong ties to the Royal Archives) suggesting the correspondence may be of interest. Aspinall in turn wrote to the Royal Librarian, Sir Owen Morshead, who accepted the correspondence.
GEO/ADD/12/2/371- 376 is a separate accession, which appears to have been purchased.
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