A Naval Biographical Dictionary/Napier, Henry Edward

NAPIER. (Captain, 1830. f-p., 15; h-p., 29.)

Henry Edward Napier, born 5 March, 1789, is fifth son of the Hon. Geo. Napier, of Mercheston Hall, N.B., a Colonel in the Army and Comptroller of Army Accounts in Ireland (who died 13 Oct. 1804), by Lady Sarah Lennox, seventh daughter of Charles, second Duke of Richmond; and grandson of Francis, fifth Lord Napier, by his Lordship’s second marriage. He is brother of Lieut.-General Sir Chas. Jas. Napier, G.C.B., the heroic Commander-in-Chief in Scinde; of Major-General Sir Geo. Thos. Napier, K.C.B., Governor and Commander at the Cape of Good Hope; and of Major-General Wm. Fras. Patrick Napier, C.B., Lieut.-Governor of Jersey, and author of the ‘History of the Peninsular War.’ One uncle, Patrick, died a Captain R.N. 15 June, 1801; and another, James John, a Lieutenant R.M., was killed on board the Fox frigate in 1776.

This officer entered the Royal Naval Academy 5 May, 1803, and embarked, 20 Sept. 1806, as Fst.-cl. Vol., on board the Spencer 74, Capts. Hon. Robt. Stopford and John Quilliam, in which ship, after visiting the Cape of Good Hope, he enacted a Midshipman’s part in the expedition against Copenhagen, and assisted at the destruction of Fleckeröe Castle, on the coast of Norway. From Dec. 1803 until Sept. 1811 he served in the East Indies on board the Clorinde 38, Capt. Thos. Briggs, Russel 74, bearing the flag of Vice-Admiral Wm. O’Brien Drury, and Diomede 50, Capt. Hugh Cook. While in the last-mentioned ship, of which he had been ordered to act as Lieutenant 31 Oct. 1809, he was officially promoted by commission dated 4 May, 1810. His next appointments were, in the course of 1812-13, to the Chatham 74, Capt. Graham Moore, Minerva 32, Capt. Rich. Hawkins, and Nymphe 38, Capt. Farmery Predam Epworth, on the North Sea and North American stations. On 7 June, 1814, he was promoted to the command of the Gorée 18, at Bermuda; and on soon afterwards removing to the Rifleman 18, he was for a considerable time intrusted with the charge of the trade in the Bay of Fundy. In Aug. 1815 Capt. Napier went on half-pay, having previously, from private motives, declined accepting a piece of plate which had been voted to him for his care in the conduct of convoys between the port of St. John’s, New Brunswick, and Castine. His last appointments were – 23 Jan. 1821, to the Jaseur 18, on the Halifax station, whence he returned in July, 1823 – and, 6 July, 1826, for a brief period, to the Pelorus 18, lying at Plymouth. He attained his present rank 31 Dec. 1830.

Capt. Napier married, 17 Nov. 1823, Miss Caroline Bennet, and by that lady, who died at Florence 5 Sept. 1836, had issue three children. Agents – Hallett and Robinson.