Samuel Hood, younger brother of Captain Alexander Hood (q.v.), entered the Navy in 1776 and was promoted to lieutenant in 1780. For most of the American War he served in the West Indies and afterwards was employed in North America. He was promoted to captain in 1788. In 1793 he went in the Juno to the Mediterranean where he was present at the occupation of Toulon. In 1798 he commanded the Zealous, and after the battle of the Nile was left by Nelson to command the force blockading the French army in Egypt. The next year he was at the defence of Salerno and in 1800 in the Atlantic in the Courageux. In 1801 he was again in the Mediterranean, and during the peace was sent out as a Commissioner for the government of Trinidad. On the death of the Commander-in-Chief, Leeward Islands, he succeeded to the position in the Contour. Returning to England in 1805, he served in the Channel and lost an arm in a successful squadron action off Rochefort. From 1806 to 1807 he was Member of Parliament for Westminster and from 1807 to 1812 for Bridport. He was promoted to rear-admiral in 1807, and in the same year was at Copenhagen, still in the Contour; he was then second-in-command to Admiral Saumarez (1757-1836) in the Baltic when he played an important part in assisting the Swedes against the Russians. He next covered the re-embarkation of the army at Corunna in 1809, after which he returned to the Mediterranean. He was appointed vice-admiral and Commander-in-Chief, East Indies, in 1811, and after a comparatively uneventful command died of fever in Madras.
The papers form the major part of the collection presented by Commander Mackinnon in 1952. There was a further donation in 1957. They consist of letter and order books, 1794 to 1795, 1806, 1808 to 1809; signals and instructions, 1790 to 1791; and logs, 1806 to 1814. The large section of papers relating to the East Indian command includes letters from the Admiralty, Victualling and Transport Boards, as well as copies of correspondence with Sir Stamford Raffles (1781-1826). In addition there are extracts from logs of ships on the East Indies Station during Hood's command, including the Modeste, 1810; Hesper, 1810; Cornelia, 1811; Doris, 1811; Phaeton, 1812; Hecate, 1813; Salsette, 1813 to 1814. Finally, there are a number of Hood family papers, 1745 to 1817.