Born 1672 Died 1750
The only son of George Legge, 1st Baron Dartmouth, William succeeded to his father's barony in 1691. In 1702 he was appointed a member of the board of trade and foreign plantations, and eight years later he became Secretary of State for the Southern department and joint keeper of the signet for Scotland. In 1711 he was created Viscount Lewisham and Earl of Dartmouth; in 1713 he exchanged his offices for that of keeper of the privy seal, which he held until the end of 1714. After a long period of retirement from public life he died on the 15th of December 1750.
Dartmouth's eldest son George, Viscount Lewisham (c. 1703-1732), predeceased his father. Other sons were: Heneage Legge (1704-1759), judge of the court of exchequer; Henry Legge, afterwards Bilson-Legge; and Edward Legge (1710-1747), who served for some time in the navy and died on the 19th of September 1747.
Extracted from the entry for DARTMOUTH, EARLS OF in the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica, the text of which lies within the public domain.