George Dempster Esq.[European Magazine]
Engraving, 160 x 110mm (6 x 4"). Trimmed inside platemark, losing 'European Magazine' text; false margins added.
George Dempster (1732-1818), agriculturist and politician. Dempster studied law but turned his back on the legal profession to go into politics. Having inherited family estates of some 6000 acres, he was able to finance a campaign as candidate for the (notoriously corrupt) Perthshire district of burghs, which he won against the odds, but at crippling costs. Dempster strengthened his position in subsequent elections (he was MP for 28 years), but had to sell around 2500 acres of land to cover his costs. Dempster was known for his independence, voting against the Stamp Act and opposing government attempts to oppress the colonists in America. He retired from politics in 1789. Dempster also developed an interest in India, becoming director of the East India Company in 1769 and 1772. He defended Warren Hastings against the Edmund Burke's campaign of impeachment. Dempster was also famous for his efforts to advance Scottish commerce and manufactures, promoting the textile industry, founding the first bank in Dundee (having noticed that the lack of proper banking facilities hampered trade), leading improvements to fisheries and promoting road building. He also carried out significant agricultural improvements on his own land and encouraged other landowners to follow his example. Plate from the 'European Magazine'.
[Ref: 35304] £60.00