Royal Naval Biography/Addenda &c. vol. 1
ADDENDA & CORRIGENDA.
DUKE OF CLARENCE, (p. 1.) H.R.H. was Patron of the Society for the improvement of Naval Architecture, from its first establishment, March 28, 1796, till its final dissolution.
P. 4. Whilst the fleet under Vice-Admiral Darby remained in the vicinity of Gibraltar, that place was often honored with the presence of H.R.H. On his return to England, he presented his august father with a plan of the garrison, in the relief of which he had made his first naval essay. In that plan were delineated the improvements which the rock had undergone, and the new batteries formed on the heights since the commencement of the blockade.
P. 9. It was through the joint interest of the royal Duke, and Admiral Lord Hood, that Nelson, after repeated applications, was appointed, at the commencement of the French war, in 1793, to the Agamemnon, of 64 guns, in which ship he afterwards so highly distinguished himself.
EARL OF St. VINCENT, (p. 27.) The Spanish prisoners were landed at Lagos Bay.
W. PEERE WILLIAMS FREEMAN, (p. 33.) In 1777 this officer commanded the Venus, a very fine fast-sailing frigate, from which he exchanged with Captain Fergusson, the late Lieutenant-Governor of Greenwich Hospital, into the Brune.
LORD RADSTOCK. (p. 56). His Lordship is a Commissioner of the Church and Corporation Land Tax; a Vice-President of the Asylum, and of the Mary-le-bone General Dispensary.
SIR JOHN ORDE, (p. 71) Commanded, but never went to sea in the Prince George.
LORD GAMBIER, (p. 79.) Joined the Prince George, of 98 guns, fitting at Chatham in the winter of 1794.
SIR C. M. POLE, (p. 89.) Commanded the Scipio previous to his joining the Crown.
ARTHUR KEMPE, Esq. (p. 122.) Assisted at the glorious affair of Quebec, where the immortal Wolfe fell; and accompanied Captains Cooke and Fourneaux in their respective voyages of discovery, sharing with them all the dangers of untried seas and inhospitable shores.
SIR RICHARD HUSSEY BICKERTON, (p. 131.) Was obliged to return to England through ill health in Sept. 1805. Did not take a seat at the Admiralty till the spring of 1807. Has recently obtained the royal permission to take the surname of Hussey before that of Bickerton, and bear the arms of Hussey quarterly with those of Bickerton, in compliance with the will of his late maternal uncle, Lieutenant-General Hussey.
ADMIRAL BOWEN, (p. 134.) Commanded the Bellona 74, in 1789.
SIR JAMES SAUMAREZ. (p. 178.) The Crescent had one man wounded in the rencontre with le Reunion.
P. 191, note † Superb had only 15 men wounded.
P. 193. Sir James was made a Vice-Admiral Dec. 13, 1806.
EARL OF NORTHESK. (p. 207.) His Lordship having resigned his command on account of ill health, returned to England in the Dreadnought of 98 guns, and arrived at St. Helen’s, accompanied by his former flag-ship and three of the Trafalgar prizes, May 16, 1806.
VISCOUNT EXMOUTH, (p. 209.) Is a Vice-President of the Marine Society.
P. 211. The action between the Apollo and Stanislaus was fought in 1780.
ADMIRAL WOLSELEY, (p. 249.) Is a nephew of the late Admiral Phillips Cosby, and distantly related to the ducal family of Grafton. He commanded the Ferret sloop of war previous to his being made a Post-Captain.
SIR JOHN SUTTON, (p. 253.) We have reason to believe that this officer served during part of the American war as a Lieutenant in the Superb, of 70 guns, the flag ship of the gallant Sir Edward Hughes, in the East Indies. If so, he was wounded in an attack made by the boats of the squadron upon several of Hyder Ally’s vessels lying at anchor near Mangalore. The boats rowed in with great firmness, under cover of two of the East India Company’s snows, amidst a heavy fire from the enemy’s ships, which they resolutely boarded and carried, setting fire to three which they were not able to bring off, took one, and forced another on shore, with several merchant vessels, which were destroyed. An armed snow was closely pursued; but by throwing her guns overboard, she escaped over the bar into the harbour. This service was not performed without some loss on the side of the British; Lieutenant Gosnam, of the Burford, and 10 men, were killed, and two officers and 51 men wounded.
The enemy’s armed vessels taken and destroyed consisted of two ships and three ketches, mounting in the whole 86 guns.
After the above affair, which took place Dec. 8, 1780, Lieutenant Sutton appears to have been promoted to the command of the Nymph sloop, in which he returned to England. His promotion to the rank of Post-Captain bears date Nov. 28, 1782. He married, March 30, 1797, Frances, daughter of Beaumont, second Lord Hotham, and sister of Rear-Admiral Hon. Sir H. Hotham.
SIR RICHARD G. KEATS, (p. 347.) Hoisted his flag in the Mars 74, and went with the gallant and lamented Sir John Moore to Sweden. Sec Memoir of Rear-Admiral Lukin, p. 702.
BATTLE OFF COPENHAGEN, (p. 368.) The Glatton on that occasion was commanded by Captain William Bligh, and subsequently by Captain Nowell.
ADMIRAL CRAWLEY, (p. 386.) Is, we believe, the son of a Purser, R.N.; if so, his brother commanded the ship to which his father at one time belonged.
SIR THOMAS WILLIAMS, (p. 390.) Left the Neptune in 1805, and was succeeded by the late Sir Thomas F. Freemantle.
SIR THOMAS B. THOMPSON, (p. 390.) We have not been favored with the means of correcting our statement, which must certainly be erroneous, respecting his age. It is scarcely possible that he could have received a Lieutenant’s commission, dated Jan. 14, 1782, if born Feb. 28, 1768.
SIR WILLIAM HARGOOD. (p. 399.) Was a Lieutenant with Nelson during the operations carried on against the Spaniards, in conformity to a plan formed by General Dalling, for the purpose of putting an end to the communication between their northern and southern possessions in America. (See Southey’s Life of Nelson, 2d edit. vol. 1, p. 31, &c.) Subsequently appointed to the Magnificent, 74, Captain Robert Linzee; and bore a part in the glorious battle between Rodney and de Grasse, April 12, 1782. Was first Lieutenant of the Pegasus, 28, when commanded by Prince William Henry, now Duke of Clarence.
VICE-ADMIRAL STIRLING, (p. 406.) Did not escort troops under Sir Samuel Auchmuty to South America. Assumed the chief command in the Rio de la Plata prior to that officer’s arrival. The army, and naval brigade, were landed on the 16th Jan. 1807, and soon after invested the town of Monte Video.
SIR CHARLES HAMILTON, (p. 419.) The marine officer who lost his life in the action between the Melpomene’s boats and the Senegal, was Mr. Vivion, a most promising young officer, son of the gentleman who has for some time past headed the list of Pursers, R.N.
SIR LAWRENCE W. HALSTED. (p. 430.) The Dutch brigs Echo and De Gier each mounted 20 guns; they were driven on shore by the Pegasus only.
SIR JOSEPH SYDNEY YORKE. (p. 440.) The following document, with which we have been favored since the sheet containing Sir Joseph’s memoir was printed, will serve as an elucidation of the lines addressed to that worthy officer on his retirement from the Admiralty.
The Editor, in alluding to a circumstance of so much importance to the Navy generally, but more especially to the destitute widows and children of naval officers, as the abrogation of the well-intentioned though severe regulation, which denied relief to any widow who had not been married twelve months previous to her husband’s demise, feels much pleasure in doing justice to Mr. Thomas Gent, formerly of the Naval Victualling department, at North Yarmouth, by stating, that but for his assiduity and disinterested exertions, aided by the kind influence of Sir Richard Strachan and Sir Joseph Yorke, the rule formerly laid down by the Guardians of the Widows’ Charity would still have remained in force.
“The Memorial of Susan Storck, widow of the late Robert Henry Storck, a Lieutenant in His Majesty’s Navy.
“Most humbly sheweth,
“That your Memorialist, in consequence of the sudden death of her husband, on the 4th December, 1816, is left entirely destitute, he having been in a state of insolvency previous to his death.
“By the Regulations of Widows’ Pensions (to prevent abuses), no widow is entitled thereto unless she has been married one year previous to the death of her husband. Your Memorialist has the misfortune to stand in this predicament, having been married only seven months before her husband’s decease; yet she trusts to the gracious clemency of your Royal Highness (as no abuse of the bounty can, it is presumed, be supposed to exist in this case), in consideration of her husband having served in the memorable actions of Copenhagen and Trafalgar; and also of her brother having served many years in His Majesty’s Navy, (the one, Samuel French, thirteen years, eleven of which he was Master of H.M’s. Ships Vincego, Valorous, and Renown, and who died in consequence of severe cold taken in actual service; the other, Aldred French, was taken prisoner in H.M.S. Vincego, Captain Wright, and suffered imprisonment in France for ten years and a half), and having an aged and infirm mother totally unable to render her the least assistance, from her own very limited means, hopes, from the distressed situation in which she is left, that her very hard case will merit the favorable consideration of your Royal Highness, so that she may receive the pension allowed to the Widow of a Lieutenant in the Navy, or such other remuneration as your Royal Highness may graciously direct. And your Memorialist, as in duty bound, will ever pray.
This memorial was originally presented to the Guardians of the Widows’ Charity, and refused on the ground of the Regulation, that as Mrs. Storck had not heen married twelve months previous to her husband’s death, she was not entitled to the pension. It was afterwards presented to the Prince Regent in Council; referred from thence to the Admiralty, and again to the Widows’ Charity. After repeated applications during many months, on the part of Mr. Gent, assisted by the gallant officers already mentioned, the pension was most considerately allowed (being the first instance of a deviation from the Regulation); and in May 1818, Mrs. Storck received the pay from the day of her husband’s death. It is almost superfluous to add, that the widows of officers are not, as formerly, deprived of their pensions in the event of their marrying again.
EARL OF GALLOWAY, (p. 445.) Commanded the Sheerness, 44, on Channel service, previous to the Winchelsea.
SIR PHILIP CHARLES DURHAM, (p. 450.) Was born at Largo, about July, 1765; embarked as a Midshipman on board the Trident, 64, commanded by Captain John Elliott, with whom he proceeded to North America, and afterwards removed into the Edgar, 74, which ship formed part of Sir George B. Rodney’s fleet, in the action with Don Juan de Langara, off Cape St. Vincent, Jan. 16, 1730; and on that occasion had 6 men killed and 20 wounded. Mr. Durham was subsequently employed in the gun-boats at Gibraltar, then besieged by the combined armies of France and Spain. In July, 1782, he was appointed to act as a Lieutenant in the Victory, of 100 guns, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Kempenfelt, with whom he served as signal officer, and afterwards joined the Royal George, which ship, as already stated at p. 450, unfortunately sunk whilst on the heel at Spithead. Immediately after that melancholy event, he obtained an appointment, as acting Lieutenant, to the Union a second rate; accompanied Earl Howe’s fleet to the relief of Gibraltar; and bore a part in the action off Cape Spartel, Oct. 20, 1782. The Union’s loss on that day was 5 men killed and 15 wounded. She was afterwards detached to the West Indies, under the orders of Rear-Admiral Sir R. Hughes. From her Mr. Durham removed into the Raisonnable, 64, in which ship he continued till the peace of 1783, and then joined the Unicorn, of 20 guns. He subsequently served for three years in the Salisbury, 50, bearing the broad pendant of his friend Commodore Elliott, on the Newfoundland station; and at the period of the Spanish armament, was appointed first Lieutenant of the Barfleur, 98. His promotion to the rank of Commander took place Nov. 12, 1790, and we soon after find him exchanging from the Daphne (in which ship he had been sent with despatches to Jamaica) into the Cygnet, sloop of war. He assumed the command of the Spitfire, Feb. 12, 1793; sailed immediately on a cruise, and on the 14th returned to Spithead with la Frique, a French privateer, taken off Havre de Grace, and which we believe was the first vessel captured under the tri-coloured flag; at all events, the first that was brought into Portsmouth.
From this period our account of Captain Durham’s services appears to be correct, with the exception of that part (p. 453.) wherein we state that he commanded the Colossus, of 74 guns; which he never did.
The following additional particulars have been recently communicated to us by a gentleman of the highest respectability:–
On the 13th Oct. 1809, Captain Durham received an order from Lord Collingwood, to hoist a red distinguishing broad pendant, and to take the command of the third division of his lordship’s fleet. Whilst filling this honorable post, he was present at the destruction of the French line-of-battle ships near Cette, already mentioned at p. 283. In the course of the same year, the Renown, being found unfit for service, was sent home, and he did not join any other ship as Captain. His flag was first hoisted in the Bulwark; and during the remainder of the war, he constantly commanded a detached squadron.
During the time he was Commander-in-Chief in the West Indies, his conduct was so highly approved of by the Board of Admiralty, that when Buonaparte returned from Elba and usurped the sovereign authority in France, he was requested by the first Lord to continue on that station, notwithstanding he had applied to be superseded, and another Flag-Officer had been appointed to succeed him. The successful exertions of the ships under his orders were fully appreciated, not only by the government, but by every proprietor and inhabitant in the Leeward Islands, as will be seen by the addresses which were presented to him by the Members of the Insurance Association of Barbadoes, the Board of Cabildo of Port d’Espagne, and the Merchants of St. Thomas’s.
“Barbadoes, 28th Nov. 1815.
“Sir,– The near approach of the period when you will resign the naval command in chief of this station, affords to the Members of the Insurance Association of this Island an opportunity of expressing those sentiments of admiration and respectful regard, with which your public conduct has inspired them.
“A series of brilliant exploits, recorded in the naval annals of your country, and honourably distinguished by our Sovereign with numerous marks of his royal approbation, had placed your name high on the roll of Britain’s naval heroes, long before you were appointed to this command:– In the exercise of that command, from the moment of its singularly auspicious commencement, when you entered our harbour leading in triumph two consort French frigates of the largest class, captured by your flag-ship, you have, on every occasion, surpassed our expectations, and realized our most sanguine hopes.
“By your judicious distribution of the comparatively small force at your disposal, by your ardent zeal and unremitted vigilance, the navigation of these seas has been in a conspicuous degree protected from the ravages of a most active and enterprising enemy, whose daring spoliations have been carried across the Atlantic, even to the very shores of the united kingdom. By your vigorous co-operation in the late fortunate expedition against the revolted French colonies, you have largely participated in the glory of obliterating from the tablet of the banners of nations, the tri-coloured flag of revolutionary France, the avowed symbol of implacable hostility to the British ensign, which having, through the valour of its brave supporters, proudly waved in war, in victorious defiance of all its foes, now calmly floats over us in the dignified tranquillity of peace.
“Your remarkable affability, in allowing unrestricted access to your person at all times, – your immediate attention to every mercantile application, – your promptness in rendering every possible assistance, – have been no less gratifying and beneficial to individuals, than your energetic measures have been consistent with your established character, and occasionally successful in promoting the general maritime interests of the empire.
“Actuated by the most lively sense of obligation to you, for the important advantages which the trade of the West Indies especially has derived from your incessant exertions, the Members of the Barbadoes Insurance Association are desirous of paying a lasting tribute to that merit which they so highly appreciate. They have therefore deputed us, the Directors of the Institution, to present you with a piece of Plate, of the value of five hundred pounds, which they entreat you to accept, as a proof of the grateful estimation in which they hold your exalted deserts.
“For ourselves, Sir, we beg to assure you of the infinite satisfaction we feel in the performance of this peculiarly agreeable office, and of the sincerity with which we join them in fervent wishes, that you may long enjoy every species of happiness, as the well deserved reward of your eminently valuable services.
|“We have the honour to be, Sir,|
|“With the greatest respect and esteem,|
|“Your most obedient humble servants,|
|“F. A. Walrond,||“J. M‘Alpin,|
|(Signed)||“Richard Cock,||“W. Oxley,|
|“Patrick Seaver,||“R. Deane.|
“To Sir P. Charles Durham, K.C.B. Rear-Admiral of the Red,
“Commander-in-Chief, &c. &c. &c.”
“Port of Spain, Trinidad, 5th Jan. 1816.
“The Illustrious Board of Cabildo having resolved, that the sum of one hundred guineas be appropriated to the purchase of a sword to be presented to your Excellency, in testimony of the high sense the Board entertains of your merits, and of the effectual protection afforded by your Excellency to the maritime interests of the colony, during the period of your command, they now beg leave to communicate the resolution, and to request your Excellency’s acceptance of it.
“By command of the Board,
(Signed)“H. Murray, Sec.”
“St. Thomas’s, 18th Aug. 1815.
“Sir – We have the honour, in the name of the Merchants of St. Thomas’s, to express their gratitude for your Excellency’s condescension in so promptly according to their request, that this island should again be made the last port of rendezvous for the homeward-bound fleets.
“The Merchants of St. Thomas’s will never forget their obligations to your Excellency, for the protection on so many occasions afforded to their trade; and they beg your Excellency’s acceptance of a Star, appropriate to the order of merit conferred on you by his Royal Highness the Prince Regent, which they hope your Excellency will have the goodnes to wear as a token of their respect and esteem.
“Your Excellency’s most obedient humble servants,
“By order of the Committee,
(Signed)“Christ. D. l’Etend,
“To his Excellency Sir P. Charles Durham, K.C.B.
“Rear-Admiral of the Red, Commander-in-Chief, &c. &c. &c.”
Sir Philip C. Durham also received votes of thanks from the Members of his Majesty’s Council, and the House of Assembly of St. Vincent’s, and from the Commercial Committee of Barbadoes, by whom a grand dinner was given to the squadron, previous to the Rear-Admiral’s departure for England, where he arrived in the spring of 1816.
The following passage we extract from the Barbadoes paper, which contained the ratification of the treaty of peace with America:–
“We cannot let this opportunity pass, without noticing the highly important services rendered to their country during the recent contest, by the Commauder-in-Chief, and the officers in subordinate authority on this station. Local circumstances have rendered these seas a scene of unexampled activity; and whenever opportunities have offered, by falling in with American cruisers, our ships of war have been uniformly distinguished for their spirited intrepidity. Although the Caribbean Sea has literally swarmed during the past season with multitudes of privateers, such has been the unremitted vigilance of the Commander-in-Chief, in the very judicious distribution of the squadron under his orders, that the losses of the commercial community have been trifling. In many instances, when fleets were expected, which had been known to have lost their coavoy, the neighbouring seas have been completely scoured by our ships of war, to insure, their safe arrival. No better illustration need be given of this subject, than to state, that eighty-four American vessels have been taken since the command of his Excellency Rear-Admiral Sir P. Charles Durham, K.C.B. on this station."
VICE-ADMIRAL WOLLEY. (p. 505.) It was Lieutenant-Colonel Whitelocke, not Major-General Williamson, who co-operated with Commodore Ford, in 1793.
VICE-ADMIRAL PATERSON. (Note at p. 515.) Lieutenant Home was superannuated, with the rank of Commander, Dec. 22, 1815; and died Feb. 21, 1823, aged 82 years.
SIR GEORGE COCKBURN. (p. 518.) First went to sea as a Midshipman, on board the Termagant sloop of war, commanded by Captain Rowley Bulteel. Subsequently served with the present Sir Robert Moorsom in the Ariel, on the East India station. P. 521. When the Minerva was chased by the Spanish ships in the Gut of Gibraltar, and whilst within gun-shot of them, one of her crew fell overboard. Disordered as she was by her recent action, Captain Coikburn instantly tacked, exchanged broadsides with the enemy, and succeeded in recovering his man. This spirited conduct was much admired by Nelson, who always felt pleasure in relating it.
VICE-ADMIRAL SCOTT, (p. 539.) Served at the reduction of Trinidad, in 1 797; see p. 859.
SIR HENRY W. BAYNTUN, (p. 543.) Served as a Commander on shore during the siege of Martinique, in 1794; and assisted at the conquest of Trinidad, in 1797.
VICE-ADMIRAL BEDFORD, (p. 574.) Was first Lieutenant of the Queen, a second rate, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Gardner, in Earl Howe’s actions, May 28, 29, and June 1, 1794; and was posted into her for his gallant conduct, and the able manner in which he supplied the place of her commander Captain Hutt, who was mortally wounded on the latter day. The total loss sustained by the Queen, was 36 slain and 67 wounded. Among the latter were her second, sixth, and junior Lieutenants, the former of whom died soon after.
P. 575. Commanded the Royal Sovereign, a first rate, previous to his becoming a flag-officer.
HON. SIR HENRY HOTHAM, (p. 615.) Was born Feb. 19, 1777.
P. 616. Joined the Revolutionnaire in 1804; assisted at the capture of four French line-of-battle ships by Sir Richard Strachan, Nov. 4, 1805, on which occasion the Revolutionnaire had 2 men killed and 6 wounded. Appointed to the Defiance in March 1806.
P. 618. Removed into the Northumberland, in the autumn of 1810.
P. 621. Was appointed Captain of the Fleet under Sir John Borlase Warren, in Dec. 1812; and served in that capacity, and as Commodore, under Sir Alexander Cochrane.
SIR JOSIAS ROWLEY. (Note at p. 624.) The Chevalier de Linières was formerly a Capitaine de Vaisseau in the French marine, but fled from France at the commencement of the revolution.
The troops under Sir Samuel Auchmuty were escorted to the Rio de la Plata by Captain Donnelly of the Ardent; Rear-Admiral Stirling had previously proceeded thither. They were landed on the 16th Jan. 1807, and attacked by the enemy on the 20th.
SIR EDWARD CODRINGTON, (p. 635.) Entered the naval service July 18, 1783; and from that period till May 27, 1793, served as a Midshipman in the Princess Augusta Yacht, Brisk sloop of war, Assistance of 44 guns, Leander 50, Ambuscade frigate, Formidable 98, and Queen Charlotte, a first rate, the latter bearing the flag (Union) of Earl Howe, Commander-in-Chief of the Channel fleet. His promotion to the rank of Lieutenant took place June 17, 1793; and on that occasion he was appointed to the Santa Margaritta frigate, but soon after removed, by the special desire of Earl Howe, into the Pegasus of 28 guns, for the purpose of repeating his Lordship’s signals. He subsequently rejoined the Queen Charlotte, and bore a part in the battles with M. Villaret de Joyeuse, after which he was entrusted with his patron’s duplicate despatches relative thereto, and sent to announce the safe arrival off Dunnose of the British fleet and the French prizes.
P. 636. He was made a Commander Oct. 7, 1794; and continued in the Comet till posted into the Babet. The Druid was chiefly employed on the Lisbon station. He never assumed the command of the Argo, but declined accepting an appointment either to her or to the Aboukir. The Orion was commanded by him from May 24, 1805, till Dec. 17, 1806. In forcing the passage of the Scheldt, the Blake, having no pilot, took the ground, and was engaged with the batteries at Flushing for two hours and three quarters. The following is an extract from the London Gazette Extraordinary of Aug. 20, 1809, containing Sir Richard J. Strachan’s official letter of the 17th: “Lord Gardner bears equal testimony to the behaviour of the officers, seamen, and marines of the Blake; and his Lordship mentions the assistance he received from Captain Codrington, in the highest terms of praise.”
On the 5th Aug. 1810, Captain Codrington was charged with the removal of four Spanish line-of-battle ships from Cadiz to Minorca; a measure rendered necessary by the rapid advance of the French army. This was a service of considerable difficulty, the ships being in every respect unfit for sea. They had only a few days’ water, provisions, and fuel; their masts, yards, and sails, were not trust-worthy; they were leaky from decay, and had even shot-holes unstopped. Their bottoms were so foul that they could not work to windward even in moderate weather; and they were fully officered, and actually loaded with refugee passengers of high rank, although they were destitute of useful men to assist in navigating them. After thirty-eight days’ exertions, however, Captain Codrington, assisted by the Norge 74, succeeded in conducting them to Port Mahon, where they were safely moored and delivered up to the Spanish Commodore. Sir Richard G. Keats, who at that time commanded the squadron engaged in the defence of Cadiz, in answer to the report of their safe arrival, says, “I beg to assure you I am quite sensible of the successful and satisfactory manner in which by your able management, and by the exertions of the officers and men under your orders, you have been enabled to execute the arduous service entrusted to your care.”
The Blake, on her return to the Cadiz station, was actively employed in co-operation with the Spanish patriots; she subsequently joined the fleet under Sir Charles Cotton in the Mediterranean; and from April 1811, till April 1813, Captain Codrington, as already stated in his memoir at p. 636, was entrusted with the command of a detached squadron on the eastern coast of Spain. Various documents expressing the gratitude of the besieged and the confidence of the population, were the immediate consequences of the assistance afforded by him during the brave and protracted defence of Tarragona; the commandant of which place, General Contreras, in his exposition of the siege, after detailing the aid which he received from the British, observes, “I may say then with truth, that if I had been assisted by the army on shore (Spanish) as I was seconded by the squadron of Commodore Codrington, Tarragona certainly would not have fallen.”
Besides the many flattering expressions of approbation conveyed to Captain Codrington from Sir Charles Cotton’s successor, the present Viscount Exmouth, during the time he was employed under his orders, the order he received from that officer to return to England, concluded with the following;
“I cannot refuse myself the satisfaction of expressing to you on this occasion my sincere thanks for the zeal and readiness with which you have always met my instructions, in performing the duties of your station, and my high sense of the ability and judgment with which you have conducted the many difficult and arduous services which have been entrusted to your execution. It has been my care that the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty should be frequently apprised of your services on the coast of Catalonia.” And in his letter to the Admiralty, accompanying the despatches with which Sir Edward Pellew charged our officer, he says, “I refer their Lordships to Captain Codrington, who is most competent to satisfy their enquiries. I much regret the departure of this very zealous and valuable officer.”
Letters expressing similar commendation were also received by Captain Codrington from the Superior Junta, and other authorities of Catalonia, as well as from the British Ambassador, Sir Henry Wellesley, with whom the. Commander-in-Chief had directed him to communicate by writing, as he might see occasion. Upon the arrival of the Blake in England, he received the following letters from the Secretary of the Admiralty;
“Admiralty Office, 30th March, 1813.
“Sir.– I am commanded by my Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to transmit to you herewith a copy of a letter from Mr. Hamilton of the 29th inst., together with the copy of the letter therein referred to from Sir Henry Wellesley, addressed to the Viscount Castlereagh, and also of its enclosure, stating the favorable opinion which the Regency of Spain entertain of your services during the period of your command off the eastern coast of Spain. And I am at the same time directed to express their Lordships’ satisfaction at receiving this testimony of the opinion of the Spanish government, which is so much in unison with their own sentiments of your services.
(Signed)“J. W. Croker.
“Captain Codrington, Blake.”
“Cadiz, 9th March, 1813.
“My Lord.– I have the honor to enclose the translation of a letter which 1 have received from the Minister for Foreign Affairs, expressive of the sense entertained by the Regency of Spain of the valuable services of Captain Codrington, during the period of his command upon the eastern coast of Spain; and I cannot do less than express my concurrence in the sentiments of the Spanish government with respect to the zeal, activity, and judgment, with which Captain Codrington has executed the important duties entrusted to him, and which have contributed so essentially to the preservation in full vigour of that active spirit of resistance to the French yoke, which has so much distinguished the inhabitants of Catalonia.
“Viscount Castlereagh, &c. &c.”
“Cadiz, 8th March, 1813.
“Sir,– The Regency of the kingdom has commissioned me to inform your Excellency, that under this day’s date an order has beep issued to the King’s Ambassador at the court of London, to recommend in the name of his Highness to the government of H.R.H. the Prince Regent in the strongest manner, the important and signal services which Commodore Codrington has rendered during his cruize in the Mediterranean; a great part of the successful actions which the army of Catalonia have had, being to be attributed to the assistance which he afforded, and to his co-operation and advice; by which army, as well as by all the inhabitants of that province, this officer is held in the highest estimation. For all these reasons the Regency are most desirous of giving him a high testimony of their gratitude; and would esteem it a new proof of the friendship of the government of H.R.H. whatever may be done in favor of a person who has fulfilled with such zeal the intentions of the august ally of Spain, and hacontributed by his valor, talents, and excellent qualities, to raise amongst the Spaniards the credit of the British nation.
“I have the honor to lay this representation before your Excellency, in order that you may have the goodness to do all in your power, that these just wishes of the Regency may have the desired effect.
“The British Ambassador.”
The note from the Spanish Minister to Lord Castlereagh being nearly verbatim the same as Senor Labrador’s communication, we shall content ourselves with selecting the concluding passage;
“The undersigned, in complying with these directions of the government, is confident that his Excellency Lord Castlereagh, in conveying them to H.R.H. the Prince Regent, will at the same time exert his powerful influence, which doubtless will operate not a little towards rewarding the services of that good servant of his Britannic Majesty, who by his skill and other high qualities, has so greatly assisted in destroying the French in Catalonia.
(Signed)“Conde de Fernan Nunez,
“Duque de Montellano.”
Captain Codrington was ordered to America previous to his being made a Rear-Admiral, and proceeded thither with his broad pendant on board the Forth frigate. The force on that station being reduced in consequence of the treaty of Ghent, he received directions from Sir Alexander Cochrane to hoist his flag in the Havannah frigate, and return to England. In his letter to the Secretary of the Admiralty, the Commander-in-Chief says, “I take this opportunity to request that you will be pleased to express to their Lordships my entire satisfaction at the manner in which Rear-Admiral Sir Edward Codrington has conducted his public duties while Captain of the fleet upon this station, during a series of active operations, in which I have greatly benefited by his advice and assistance.” In a letter to Sir Edward himself, he at the same time writes, “I cannot allow of your departure from hence without first expressing to you how much I feel obliged by the zeal and ability which you have displayed in your public situation while under my command, and how much benefit I have derived from your counsel and assistance in the active services in which the fleet and army have been engaged.”
Sir Edward Codrington married, Dec. 27, 1802, Miss Hall, of Old Windsor. He has recently had the misfortune to lose his eldest son, Edward, a Midshipman on board the Cambrian frigate, stationed in the Mediterranean. Although only 19 years of age, from the confidence his Captain (G. W. Hamilton) placed in him, and from his speaking foreign languages, he was selected for a particular service; and was proceeding to the Island of Hydra in the ship’s cutter, when a violent squall of wind overset the boat, and consigned him, with a merchant, the coxswain, and three of the crew, to a watery grave. A gentle spirit, a hold daring, an eager thirst after knowledge, and an ardent love of his profession, formed in this lamented youth a bright promise for the future man and officer. – All who knew him grieve for his so brief career! To his sorrowing family the recollection of his mild and manly virtues, and his warm affections, although soothing to their distress, redouble their severe affliction for his loss.
VISCOUNT TORRINGTON. (p. 654.) The Active was detached alone by Commodore Johnstone to the East Indies.
P. 656. The Galatea, in company with the Doris frigate, re-captured two large Portuguese Brazil ships.
VICE-ADMIRAL BALLARD, (p. 676.) This officer’s grandfather, a Dutch merchant, settled at Portsmouth, married a grand-daughter of the Rev. Francis Chandler, a bold, awakening, and popular preacher, and a man of great piety and learning, who lost a considerable property in houses by the great fire of 1666. His father, Samuel, went to sea at a very early age with Admiral Holmes, but afterwards became a merchant at Portsmouth, and married a Miss Flint of Epsom in Surrey, to which county he retired from business in 1784.
Mr. S. J. Ballard entered the naval service on board the Valiant, of 74 guns, commanded by the Hon. John Leveson Gower, Dec. 1, 1776; and in that ship was present at the capture of the Licorne and Pallas, French frigates, by the fleet under Admiral Keppel; and in the action with M. d’Orvilliers, off Brest, July 27, 1778, on which occasion the Valiant had 6 men killed and 26 wounded. In Oct. 1779, he was removed into the Shrewsbury, another third rate, commanded by Captain Mark Robinson, and soon after sailed, in company with the fleet under Sir G. B. Rodney, to the relief of Gibraltar.
On the passage thither, the Shrewsbury assisted at the capture of a Spanish convoy, and the defeat of Don Juan de Langara, Jan 8 and 16, 1780. Returning to England with the prizes in the ensuing month, she also contributed to the capture of a French 64, and several merchant ships, by the squadron under Rear-Admiral Digby. We next find her proceeding to the West Indies, where she bore a part in no less than five actions with the French fleet commanded by Count de Grasse, viz., off Martinique, April 29, 1781; off the Chesapeake, Sept. 5th in the same year; and in Basseterre Road Jan. 25, 26, and 27, 1782. In the two former she sustained a loss of 20 men slain and 66 wounded; among the latter was Captain Robinson, who unfortunately lost a leg .
Mr. Ballard was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant by Rear-Admiral Joshua Rowley, at Jamaica, Feb. 10, 1783; and from this period served successively in the Shrewsbury, Torbay, Astrea, Monarch, Alfred, and Queen, from which latter ship, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Gardner, he was made a Commander for his gallant conduct in the battles between Earl Howe and M. Villaret de Joyeuse, May 28 and 29, and June 1, 1794. The Queen, on the latter day, had 36 men killed, and 67, including her Captain and 3 Lieutenants, wounded.
Our officer’s post commission bears date Aug. 1, 1795; previous to which he had acted as Captain in several line-of-battle ships, during the temporary absence of their proper commanders; served as a volunteer in the Queen; regulated the quota men on the coast of Sussex; and commanded the Megsera fire-vessel, attached to Lord Bridport’s fleet. He subsequently acted for some time as Captain of the Thunderer 74; and on the 20th Feb. 1796, obtained the command of the Pearl frigate, in which he was employed during the ensuing two years in affording protection to the Quebec, Baltic, and Newfoundland trade, and in occasional cruizes off Calais and Havre.
In March 1798, the Pearl sailed for the coast of Africa, in company with the Sheerness, of 44 guns, bearing the broad pendant of Commodore James Cornwallis. On the 25th of the following month, Captain Ballard, who had some days before been detached by signal, discovered and gallantly attacked a squadron consisting of two heavy French frigates and an armed brig, having under their convoy two Spanish galleons, lying at the Isles Delos, between Rio Grande and Sierra Leone. Owing, however, to the great disparity of force, and the want of water to enable him to place the Pearl in an advantageous position, he was obliged, after sustaining a very galling fire, to run between the islands and proceed with the intelligence to Commodore Cornwallis, whom he joined at Cape Coast on the 22d May. The Pearl on this occasion had 1 man killed, two guns dismounted, and her spars, sails, and rigging much damaged.
It being soon after ascertained that the enemy had departed from the coast, Captain Ballard sailed from Sierra Leone, to which place he had returned with the Commodore, to Barbadoes, where he arrived on the 30th July, and from that period was principally employed as senior officer at the Saintes, watching two French frigates in Basseterre, and cruising to windward of Deseada, where he captured le Scaevola, a privateer of 10 guns and 73 men; l’Independence of 12 guns and 66 men; a row-boat, and a Dutch schooner; and re-captured eight American vessels. Returning to England in June 1799, in company with the Vengeance 74, and a large fleet of merchantmen, chase was given to four Spanish frigates, which, owing to the bad sailing of the Vengeance, effected their escape, although the Pearl was not more than two miles from them when the signal was made for her to abandon the pursuit.
In the month of October following, Captain Ballard conveyed General Fox from Portsmouth to Minorca. During the ensuing two years, he was engaged in a great variety of service on the Mediterranean station, particularly in the Gulf of Lyons, and in the defence off Porto Ferrajo, in the island of Elba; the inhabitants of which place, previous to his arrival, had suffered the greatest privations, being destitute of provisions; and men, women, and children obliged to mingle together in the bomb proofs, every house having been unroofed by the enemy’s shells; the timely appearance of the Pearl, however, the active co-operation of her commander, and the gallant conduct, able advice, and judicious distribution of the resources of two meritorious British merchants, Messrs. Grant and Littledale, had the effect of stimulating the islanders to persevere in resisting the besiegers; and aided by the Pearl’s marines, who had been landed to strengthen the little garrison, they succeeded in retaining possession of their town till the arrival of reinforcements, when the enemy were obliged to crave a truce.
Captain Ballard returned to England Dec. 3, 1801, and paid off the Pearl on the 14th March, 1802, after commanding her for upwards of six years, during which time he had taken, destroyed, and re-captured about 80 vessels; among which, in addition to those already mentioned, were a Genoese polacre, of 14 guns; la Vertu, of 10 guns and 40 men; and an armed xebec. He also assisted at the capture of la Carerre, a French frigate of 40 guns and 356 men; l’Incroyable, of 28 guns and 220 men; and a Ragusan brig bound to Algiers, with presents from Buonaparte to the Dey.
From this period, notwithstanding his repeated applications for an active ship, Captain Ballard could not obtain any other command than that of a district of Sea Fencibles, till Oct. 1809, when he was appointed to the Sceptre, of 74 guns, in which ship he soon after sailed for the Leeward Islands; and immediately on his arrival off Martinique, with the Alfred, 74, and Freija frigate, under his orders, was sent by Sir Alexander Cochrane, in pursuit of four French frigates, which had recently captured the Junon, a British frigate, commanded by Captain John Shortlaud, who afterwards died of his wounds at Guadeloupe.
At 7 A.M. on the 18th Dec, he formed a junction with the light squadron stationed off Basseterre; and soon after discovered two of the French frigates moored with springs on their cables, in a strong position in Ance la Barque. The Captains of the squadron entering most readily into his plans, Captain Ballard rejected a flag of truce sent by the enemy, conceiving it a mere French finesse to procrastinate an attack, the mode of which was as follows:– Captains Volant Vashon Ballard, and George Miller, of the Blonde and Thetis frigates, being well acquainted with the place, to lead in. The former ship and the Sceptre to anchor a-breast of the enemy’s vessels; the Thetis, Freija, and Castor frigates, to bring up near the batteries. The sloops of war and a schooner, to cover the boats, which were to land the party intended to storm the works.
Baffling and light winds prevented the ships taking their stations till about 4 P.M., at which time Sir Alexander Cochrane was approaching to their support, in the Pompée, of 74 guns; but seeing the judicious arrangement of Captain Ballard, he did not interfere therewith; and owing to the light airs and calms, had only an opportunity of witnessing the action, the brunt of which was borne by the Blonde, Thetis, Cygnet, Hazard, and Ringdove, they being a-head of the other ships; and by the animated fire kept up from them, one of the enemy’s frigates was very soon dismasted; upon which their crews began to desert them, and before long they were both observed to be in flames.
Captain Ballard now ordered the boats to land under the orders of Captain Cameron, of the Hazard, who gallantly stormed the batteries; which, together with their magazines, and the frigates, each pierced for 44 guns, and laden with stores and provisions for the garrison of Guadaloupe, were completely destroyed by 7 o’clock.
In the execution of this service, Captain Cameron, Mr. G. Jenkins, first Lieutenant of the Blonde, and several men, were slain; Lieutenant C. W. Richardson, and many others, wounded. The enemy’s loss was also supposed to be very severe, as their ships, although not fully manned, had on board at the commencement of the action, about 450 troops and artillerymen. Only 7 prisoners were taken.
Towards the latter end of Jan. 1810, Captain Ballard escorted a division of the army destined for the attack of Guadaloupe, from St. Lucia to the Saintes, where he remained three days, exercising his seamen and marines on shore, and making arrangements with Brigadier-General Harcourt for the debarkation of the troops. From thence he proceeded with the squadron under his orders, and transports, towards Trois Rivieres, for the purpose of drawing the enemy’s attention from the other division of troops, which had already been landed at the village of St. Mary, under the superintendence of Commodore Fahie, and was then pushing through the difficult pass of Trochien. Having succeeded by his manoeuvres in deterring the enemy from attacking that division, he anchored between Basseterre and Ance la Barque, and landed the remainder of the troops without opposition, the enemy having evacuated their batteries, which were immediately taken possession, of by the marines of his squadron. Sir Alexander Cochrane had in the mean time anchored in the bay of Trois Rivieres.
From this period till the surrender of the island, Captain Ballard commanded the detachment of seamen and marines attached to the second division of the army; and his active co-operation was thus noticed by the commander of the forces, Lieutenant-General Sir George Beckwith:–
“Head Quarters, Beau Fallon, Guadaloupe, Feb. 7, 1810.
“The commander of the forces desires to convey his best acknowledgments and thanks to Commodore Ballard, Captain Ballard, Captain StanMi, Captain Elliott, and to Captain Flin, of the Royal Navy, for their great and effectual services with the second division of the army to leeward, under the command of Brigadier-General Harcourt, and to the other officers and seamen of the fleet employed under their orders; without whose exertions the troops could not have been victualled in their present positions, nor the artillery brought forward with the necessary ammunition and stores, and placed in battery in a situation to be served against the enemy at the moment in which he signified his wish to open a negociation.”
Previous to his return to England, Captain Ballard visited Antigua, Martinique, St. Lucia, Barbadoes, Tobago, Trinidad, Dominica, St. Kitts, Tortola, and St. Thomas’s. He sailed from the latter island with the homeward-bound trade early in August, and arrived at Spithead Sept. 25, 1810. After docking and refitting the Sceptre, he was placed under the orders of Lord Gambier, and by him occasionally entrusted with the command of a detached squadron employed in watching the enemy’s ships in Brest harbour and Basque Roads. Some time in 1812, he received official notice of his being appointed to superintend the payment of the ships at Spithead; but as he did not choose to be superseded at sea, while blockading an enemy, he remained in the Sceptre, on Channel service, till she was ordered to return to port, in Jan. 1813. He became a Rear-Admiral, June 4, 1814. Our officer married, first, his cousin, Maria, only daughter of James Flint, of Faversham, in Kent, Esq., arid by her had eight children, three of whom, a son and two daughters, are now living; secondly, Catharine, daughter of the late, and sister to the present Sir Thomas Crawley Boevey, Bart., of Flaxley Abbey, co. Gloucester.
Residence.– Coates Hall, in Yorkshire, left him by his uncle, Colonel Flint; and 34, Park Street, Bath.
REAR-ADMIRAL OTWAY. (Note at p. 694.) The Ponsborn was lost in consequence of her not removing to a greater distance from the shore. The person who had charge of her at the time, was cautioned of the danger of remaining so near the land, by Captain Wood of the Favorite, but obstinately persisted in continuing there. On looking over the list of armed vessels captured by Captain Otway during the late wars, we find that they carried 1000 guns; but that instead of the whole being taken in the West Indies, some of them fell into his hands on other stations.
REAR-ADMIRAL FAHIE, (p. 717.) Superintended the debarkation of the first division of the army employed in the reduction of Guadaloupe, and commanded a detachment of seamen on shore during the whole of the operations. In the general orders issued by Sir George Beckwith, the military Commander-in-Chief, immediately after the surrender of the island, his services on that occasion are thus noticed:–
“The Commander of the forces is equally anxious to convey to Commodore Fahie, to Captains Dilkes and Dowers, of the Royal Navy, and to the other officers and seamen serving under their orders, to windward, the high sense he entertains of the important services rendered by them, not only at the landing of the first division of the army under the command of Major-General Hislop, and of the reserve, with a considerable proportion of provisions and stores, but for similar exertions at Three Rivers, in disembarking five days’ provisions for the troops, without which they could not have advanced, or closed with the enemy; thereby bringing the objects of the campaign to a rapid termination.”
N.B. The first part of Sir George Beckwith’s General Orders has been already given in the Addenda, under the head of Rear-Admiral Ballard. See p. 879.
SIR CHARLES BRISBANE, (note at p. 741.) We are most anxious to correct our error respecting the boarding of the Hatslar. It is true that Mr. Grint first mounted the accommodation ladder, but he did not go on board till after Captain Brisbane.
REAR-ADMIRAL WINTHROP, (p. 759.) Was a Midshipman on board the Formidable, bearing the flag of Sir George B. Rodney, in the memorable battle of April 12, 1782; an account of which will be found at p. 35, et seq. Commanded a battalion of seamen, attached to Prince Edward’s brigade, at the conquest of Martinique, in 1794.
P. 760. The boats engaged in the capture of the enemy’s vessels, at Delfzel, were under his immediate directions.
SIR JAMES ATHOL WOOD. (p. 795.) The first part of General O’Hara’s letter to Mr. Secretary Dundas, alludes to the circumstance of some of the French prisoners under Lieutenant Wood’s charge, having made three attempts to obtain possession of the cartel ship in which they were conveyed to Europe. Their endeavours, however, were frustrated, although the English crew were but 18 in number, whilst the republicans were upwards of 200.
P. 787. The Favorite was left off Labay, by Captain Otway, whilst he went to endeavour to prevail on the General to embark a sufficient number of troops to relieve the garrison there.
P. 789. When Captain Wood waited upon Sir Ralph Abercromby, Jan. 5, 1797. in addition to his observations respecting the defenceless state of Trinidad, he took an opportunity of pointing out to the gallant General, the ease with which the Dutch settlement of Surinam, recently reconnoitred by the Favorite, might be taken possession of by the British, together with property to an immense amount.
P. 794. At the time Captain Wood drew up his remarks relative to Mount St. Antonio, the fort was garrisoned by a Serjeant’s party only.
REAR-ADMIRAL MOUBRAY. The following is a copy of the letter of thanks alluded to at p. 810:–
“Magnificent, at St. Maura, April 19, 1810.
“Sir,– The siege of St. Maura having ended by the surrender of the fortress, and the garrison becoming prisoners of war, I feel it incumbent upon me to enclose for your information the order issued upon that occasion, by Brigadier-General Oswald, expressing his sentiments upon the conduct of the seamen and marines employed on shore, and immediately under his own observation; and it is a great pleasure to mc at the same time to testify the sense I have of that zealous alacrity which was so conspicuously displayed by the Captains, Officers, and ships’ companies, in carrying forward the various duties of the siege, and on every occasion where an opportunity presented itself. For the active and unremitting support and assistance which I personally received, I request you to accept my warmest thanks.
&c. &c. &c.
REAR-ADMIRAL WALKER, (p. 849.) Immediately after his promotion to the rank of Commander, he went as a volunteer with his late Captain, the Hon. A. K. Legge, and his old messmates of the Niger, in the Latona. At Christmas in the same year, he was appointed to act as Captain of the Gibraltar, an 80-gun ship, under orders for the Mediterranean; but just as he was setting out to join her, intelligence arrived at the Admiralty that the French fleet had put to sea in great force, which rendered it necessary to strengthen the grand fleet; and the Gibraltar was consequently attached to it, an older officer being at the same time nominated to command her. Captain Walker was, however, noted for the first vacant sloop of war, and soon after appointed to the Terror bomb. In the month of June following, he was ordered to assume the temporary command of the Trusty 50, and to escort five sail of East Indiamen to a certain latitude, “where after having seen them in safety,” he was to return to Spithead. For two or three days after he reached the prescribed latitude, the wind continuing at S.W., he did not consider his charge “in safety,” and consequently the spirit of his orders not completed. He therefore thought it his duty to continue with the Indiamen till the wind became more favorable, immediately after which he parted company and proceeded towards England. The next day he spoke a Dane from Cadiz, who acquainted him that about forty sail of English merchant vessels had been lying there some time for want of convoy, and under heavy demurrage. This information being shortly after confirmed by a Swede, also from that port, Captain Walker conceiving his ship could not be more beneficially employed than in protecting the commerce of his country, took upon himself to touch at Cadiz, and take charge of all the British vessels lying there, amounting to thirty-three sail of merchantmen and three transports, the whole of which he conducted in perfect safety to England. Two memorials of the Spanish merchants residing in London, presented in favor of Captain Walker, stated “the value of this fleet to amount to upwards of a million sterling, which but for his active exertions would have been left in great danger, at a most critical time, when the Spaniards were negociating a peace with France.”
During the Trusty’s stay at Cadiz, five of her officers were arrested by orders from the Governor, for carrying money off to the ship on account of the merchants; and the Spanish government having made strong representations on the subject to the British ministry, it was deemed right to bring Captain Walker to a court-martial on his return to Portsmouth; and it being found that he had acted without orders, he was broke. However hard it was upon him to be thus cut off from the service at the beginning of his career as a Commander, and however severe the sentence passed upon him for his indiscreet though undoubtedly well-meant zeal may appear, it was no small consolation to his wounded feelings to know that the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty duly appreciated the motives by which he had been actuated, and interested themselves in his favour. About eight months after this unfortunate affair, the Spanish Ambassador received orders from his court to request of the British government that the whole transaction might be forgotten, and regarded as non avénue. Our officer was reinstated as a Commander in March 1797.
N.B. A Supplement to the Addenda et Corrigenda, will appear in our next volume.
- See note † at p. 3, et seq.
- The last tri-coloured flag that flew in the West Indies, was hoisted on the fort near Basseterre, Guadaloupe, and struck to Sir P. C. Durham, in Aug. 1815; all the other posts in that island capitulated to the army, but this one was subdued by the Venerable.
- A beautiful Diamond Star, of great value.
- See note †, at p. 195.
- See note †, at p. 3, et seq.
- See p. 133. N.B. The Shrewsbury also assisted at the reduction of St. Eustatia.
- It should here be observed, that the Sceptre’s crew had been trained to the use of the broad-sword, on the passage from England.