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Royal Naval Biography/Badcock, William Stanhope


WILLIAM STANHOPE BADCOCK, Esq.
[Post-Captain of 1815.]

Youngest son of the late Thomas Stanhope Badcock, formerly of Little Missenden Abbey, co. Bucks, Esq. by Anne, daughter of the lute William Buckle, of Mythe House, near Tewkesbury, Esq. His father, and his late uncle, Lieutenant-Colonel Lovell Badcock, were both High Sheriffs of Buckinghamshire: the former served in the 6th regiment of foot, as lieutenant, in America and the West Indies, during the war between Great Britain and her colonies; after which he held a commission in the Royal Bucks militia, and was with that corps in Ireland, during the alarming rebellion, in 1798. Their grandmother was a daughter of Sir Salathiel Lovell, one of the Barons of the Exchequer, whose other daughters married into the Barrington and Stanhope families: their mother was the daughter and heiress of Colonel Lovell, who died at the Cape of Good Hope.

The subject of this memoir entered the navy, in May 1799, at the age of eleven years; and first went to sea in the Renown 74, bearing the flag of Sir John Borlase Warren, to whom he had been recommended by the late Marquis of Buckingham, a nobleman of the highest character.

During the winter of 1799, the Renown was employed off Ushant, under the orders of Lord Bridport and Sir Alan Gardner; but on Earl St. Vincent assuming the command of the grand fleet. Sir John B. Warren was sent to cruise between Brest and Rochefort, on which station the boats of his squadron captured and destroyed, in June and July 1800, la Therése French national ship of 20 guns, 7 other armed vessels, 9 sail of merchantmen laden with government supplies, 3 land batteries, and the same number of magazines[1]. The result of an expedition against Ferrol, under Sir J. B. Warren and Lieutenant-General Sir James Pulteney, has has been stated at p. 220 et seq. of Vol. I. Part I. On the 29th Aug. 1800, a detachment of boats, under Lieutenant Henry Burke, of the Renown, captured la Guipe French ship privateer, of 18 long 9-pounders and 161 men, near the narrows of Redondella, in Vigo bay. On this occasion, the British had 3 men killed and 20, including Lieutenants Burke, John Henry Holmes, and James Nourse, wounded; the enemy’s loss amounted to 25 slain and 40 wounded. Shortly afterwards, Sir John B. Warren gave over the command of the armament to Sir Edward Pellew, and proceeded on a cruise off the Western Islands, in hopes of falling in with some of the Spanish treasure ships from South America. The manner in which the Renown was employed between Nov. 1800 and July 1804, is described in our memoir of Captain John Chambers White, with whom Mr. Badcock returned to England, in the Kent 74[2].

We next find him serving under Captain George Martin, in the Barfleur 98; from which ship he was removed to the Neptune, of similar force, commanded by Captain Thomas Francis Freemantle, whom he rejoined, after a short leave of absence, just in time to bear a part at the glorious battle of Trafalgar[3].

Twelve days after that ever memorable event, Mr. Badcock was appointed acting lieutenant of the Melpomene frigate, Captain Peter Parker. His first admiralty commission bears date Jan. 29, 1806. The following are extracts of a journal, by Captain Parker, of his proceedings during a tremendous gale of wind, in which the Melpomene lost her rudder, main-top-mast, &c. sprung her fore and main lower yards, and had her main-mast dreadfully shattered:–

“We parted from the fleet, under Lord Collingwood, on the 8th Dec. 1805; the Orion 74, Endymion frigate, and Weazel brig, accompanied us. We were going to scour the Mediterranean, in quest of a squadron of frigates, under the command of Jerome Buonaparte, who was reported to have sailed from Genoa. The weather continued pretty moderate until the 11th, when we captured a Spanish settee, laden with stores, and took her in tow for the purpose of conveying her to the commodore, who was to windward; but at 11 p.m., in a violent squall, we cut her adrift, and afterwards scuttled her. On the 12th, made Majorca; carried away the larboard bumpkin, and found the main-yard sprung; lowered it down, and fished it. 13th, owing to the violence of the gale and the heavy sea, bore up, with the Weazel in company; ship labouring very hard. 14th, lost sight of the Weazel, as we had before done of the Orion and Endymion. 15th, at 9 p.m. came on a most tremendous squall, with thunder, lightning, rain, and sleet; clewed all up. At about 9-15, the main-mast was struck by lightning; the fluid exploded by the pumps, and hurt an officer and a sailor[4]. 16th, wind more moderate, and steady; examined the main-mast, found it severely splintered in many places, particularly about the hoops and in the wake of the trusses, where copper had been nailed on. Stood towards Barcelona, in hopes of rejoining the Orion. 17th, at 9 a.m. the sea rising all around us, with water-spouts and flashes of lightning in every direction; furled all the sails, and prepared for another gale; at 11, a very heavy sea pooped us, stove in the dead-lights, and filled the cabin with water, p.m. the wind increased to a perfect hurricane; at 1, the ship was struck by lightning, and the main-mast much hurt. At 2, most tremendous squalls, with rain, thunder, &c. the storm-slay-sails blew to atoms, the ship entirely unmanageable, and whole seas breaking over her. The rudder-head gave way, chocked the rudder, and secured it with the pendants. At 3-30, the main-top-mast went in three pieces; and at 4, both the rudder-chains gave way. At 6, a man fell from the fore-yard on the best-bower anchor, but was not killed. All the pumps obliged to be kept constantly going. 18th, the quarter-boats were stove; found the rudder gone from the stern-post. At 10 p.m. the carpenter reported the main-mast sprung, a few feet above the quarter-deck. p.m. the sea mountains high, got a cable from the stern with hawsers, &c. and struck the mizen-top-mast, but found it impossible to wear the ship. 19th, more moderate, with a heavy swell; employed in making a Pakenham’s rudder. Saw the Colombretes, two points on the lee bow, distant 5 leagues. Made all sail on the fore-mast, in hopes of wearing, as we were drifting bodily down on those rocky uninhabited islands. Finding she would not wear, anchored with a spring on the cable, in 60 fathoms. At midnight, tremendous squalls, with thunder, lightning, and rain. 30th, at 1 a.m. found the ship driving, cut the cable and spring, set the storm-stay-sails and fore-sail; saw the islands W.S.W., the ship would lie no higher. No chance remained of saving a single life, when the wind shifted in a dreadful squall, and allowed her to lie up S.E. for 40 minutes, which put us clear of danger, p.m. succeeded in shipping the rudder, and found, to our great joy, the ship once more under command. 21st, a steady breeze from S.W.; bore up for Malta. 22d, hard gales; found the fore-channel very badly started; 25th, at midnight, anchored of Valette light-house. 26th, warped into the harbour; found the fore-yard sprung and the ship very much strained.”

After her defects were made good at Malta, the Melpomene conveyed Major-General Sherbrooke, and escorted a body of troops from Messina to the coast of Egypt. She was subsequently stationed off Gaeta, to assist in the defence of that fortress, then besieged by Marshal Massena, with 30,000 men. Here the zeal and bravery of her officers and men were conspicuous; and their conduct was rewarded with the grateful thanks of its intrepid defender, the Prince of Hesse, whose long and brilliant defence is yet alive in the public recollection.

We next find the Melpomene conveying a spy, with despatches, from Palermo to the bay of Naples, and Lieutenant Badcock volunteering to land him under cover of night, which, after being twice discovered, and the alarm guns fired, he at length succeeded in doing, close to the walls of the town. On this occasion, being well aware of his fate if taken prisoner, he recommended his men to fight to the last, should they be attacked, as they would find it better to be shot than hanged. From thence the Melpomene proceeded off Leghorn.

On the 18th May, 1806, Lieutenant Badcock was suddenly ordered to jump into a 6-oared cutter, and proceed in pursuit of a French row-boat and several other small vessels near the shore. So eager was Captain Parker to go in chase of a ship then to leeward, that he would not allow him time to get his sword and pistols, but directed him to push off with the arms that were hastily thrown into the boat as she descended from the quarter, consisting of only 4 cutlasses and 2 pistols, for nine persons, one of whom was a Tuscan. A small gig, however, was afterwards sent to his assistance, and directed by him to attack one of the merchant vessels, while he continued to pursue the row-boat, which was captured, after some little resistance, within gunshot of Leghorn, and found to be so full of corn that there was not room for any of the prisoners to be confined below. Her crew consisted of 16 well-armed men.

It now fell calm, and Lieutenant Badcock ordered four of his men to the oars, in order to get the prize’s head off towards the frigate, and increase her distance from the shore. Whilst thus employed, a shot fired at the gig unfortunately drew his attention, and the prisoners, instigated thereto by the Anglo-Italian, rose, and regained possession of the vessel, but not until they had wounded him in the hand, and stunned him by a blow on the head, stabbed one of his men, and thrown two others overboard; leaving only four persons to resist the whole seventeen. We must do them the justice, however, to say, that they did not allow those who were in the sea to perish.

At the expiration of three months, Lieutenant Badcock had the good fortune to get exchanged; and he appears to have been on board the Madras 54, at Malta, waiting for an opportunity to rejoin his frigate, when a magazine was accidently blown up, by which sad accident near 300 people were killed and wounded ; among the former was the gunner of the Madras, who lost his life by a shell bursting over her.

The Melpomene arrived at Malta during the mutiny of Fribourg’s regiment, a newly raised corps, consisting principally of Greeks and Albanians, quartered in fort Ricazoli, the gates of which they had shut, after killing some of their superiors, and seizing an English artillery officer, whom they compelled to point the guns against his countrymen.

On hearing of this appalling event, Captain Parker immediately landed his marines, and sent boats, under Lieutenant Badcock, with part of H.M. 44th regiment, to assist in escalading the fort by night. The assault was well-conducted, and would have been crowned with complete success had not six of the mutineers thrown themselves into the powder magazine, resolved to perish there rather than be taken prisoners.

This building, situated nearly in the middle of the fort, a sort of Acropolis, was not defensible in itself; but, as containing an immense store of ammunition, was a gigantic weapon in the hands of these desperadoes. It was in vain to attempt their forcible expulsion; threats were of no avail; and all milder negociations were prohibited by the stern policy of the military commander, who insisted upon immediate and unqualified submission. In storming and carrying the other parts of the fort, three men belonging to the 44th regiment were killed, and Lieutenant Badcock appears to have had a narrow escape, a ball having passed close to his ear just as he entered one of the works. The sequel of this melancholy business is thus narrated in the New Monthly Magazine:–

“These six men, at first confident of making advantageous terms, but afterwards dispirited by the obstinacy of their opponents, and the failure of their provisions, were now employed in frequent attempts at negociation, more submissively, but still very artfully offered. From time to time, some one presented himself with a new proposal, which was invariably answered by a flat denial to receive any but an unconditional surrender. The countenances of the men were every day more haggard; and it was clear that they must become victims of starvation if they attempted to hold out any longer. The applications were multiplied, and their ingenuity increased with the critical aspect of their situation. Sometimes a truce of a few hours was requested; sometimes their surrender was promised upon the receipt of certain articles of food, or what not. But all this dallying failed. Six days passed away, and the poor wretches appeared on the verge of a most miserable death, pale, sunken, and exhausted. On the morning of the seventh day, one who had officiated as their commander presented himself at the usual place of communication with a fresh demand. His name was Anastatio Ieramachos, well known not only as the first who had broken his allegiance to his superior officers, but as the subtle and resolute supporter of all the rebellious deeds which followed; a crafty, clever Greek, with boldness enough to execute a dangerous act, and skill enough to keep away as much danger as was by human means avoidable. He appeared on one side a small aperture, made for this especial purpose, and demanded an interview with some agent of the Governor. It was conceded to him. He said “that his followers were in the greatest imaginable state of want; that a new enemy had attacked them in the shape of unconquerable thirst; that they had long ago drained their bags and scanty reservoirs, and that they must soon perish or be driven to madness”. He and his party threw themselves upon the humanity of the Governor; a little water was all they asked. Such was their distress that they had resolved to endure it no longer, and had come to a determination of blowing themselves up that very evening, unless a previous supply were granted to them. He stated, as usual, that all they wished was to avoid the extreme cruelties of military law; that their death to them was far more to be desired; and that they had deliberately decided, that by exploding the fort, they should perish with less pain and infamy. At nine o’clock that night, unless some concessions were previously made to them, – at the first tolling of the bell of St. John’s Cathedral, they would set fire to the magazine; – a few drops of water would prevent that catastrophe.”

“Whether the other party discredited the declarations of Ieramachos, and conceived the threat held out only for the sake of gaining what they needed, or that General V____, having read certain maxims in the legislative works of the army, fancied no deviations in any case allowable, cannot in this case be decided. A negative was returned to the request of the Greek, and the day passed in a calm of horrible suspense. Again and again some one appeared on the same errand, re-stating their need, and deepening the picture of their misery, but always concluding with the same constant announcement, that a refusal would be heard more of at the hour of nine that night. And at the hour of nine it was heard of. A tremendous burst, as of a thousand riven rocks, startled every one from his security. A shock felt for miles around, and the blaze of a huge conflagration, told to the inhabitants of the neighbouring towns, and the villages scattered even to the farthest corner of the Island, that these despairing men had kept their word. Windows of houses at the other side of the city of Valetta were shattered into atoms; and when the first dreadful crash had subsided, the shrieks of men in agony reached far and wide through the quiet evening sky, and declared that the authors of this catastrophe had not died unrevenged. When a survey could he made of the extent of this disorder, it was terrible indeed to find what havoc it had caused. The fort ruined and torn into fragments; its walls strewn with corpses, and its fosse streaming with human blood not yet cold.

“The feeling throughout the island was very generally one of commiseration for the poor wretches who had been urged to this conduct by what was considered an almost unnecessary display of austerity on the part of our officers. It was thought that men not inured to military discipline, born, too, under another sky, and accustomed to different habits; should have been handled in the first instance with greater softness and indulgence. It seemed that many of their measures were but the natural and excusable projects of men scarcely yet reclaimed from barbarism, certainly not modelled into the prime pieces of mechanism which older soldiers become. A little clemency then shewn might have soothed the ill-temper they manifested at the sword-and-stick system of the German Adjutant, and prevented the completion of this disaster. But their fate was provoked by measures neither humane nor politic, and the sympathy of the public was greatly on their side.

“The sensations caused by these occurrences were beginning to wear away, and a week had now passed since the event, without changing the popular sentiments on the subject. An old priest was at this period riding home to his cusal in some secluded district of the interior, and the panniers upon which he balanced his legs were furnished in priestly-wise with sundry dainties of fish, flesh, and vegetables, accommodated to his peculiar palate. The old donkey he bestrode marched leisurely along the un-frequented bye-way, and flapped his long ears to disturb the pestilent flies which lived thereon, much, however, to the inconvenience of his master, whose nose received the migratory swarm, and was discomposed much beyond the degree permitted by the usual serenity of the man. But this occasional affliction did not much interfere with the low, solemn piece of psalmody, or what not, that continually issued from his lips with the words of their national song, like a country-dance played upon the organ of Haarlem. Still proceeded he with the memorable

“‘Tén en hobbok jaua calbi,’”

[5]

words too amorous perhaps for his cloth, but, nevertheless, the theme of all, young or old, phlegmatic or unctious, in that country, where the tempers appear as unanimous as the sky is uniform. ‘Jaua calbi,’ repeated the old man, a little put out by a sudden jerk of his donkey, and sidelong movement to the right. ‘Jaua calbi,’ once more he murmured, but in a subdued tone, as he began to fancy that some cause must exist for this eccentricity of his beast; and looking cautiously about him, what saw he but a musket directed upon the level of a stone wall, and the head and shoulders of a soldier planted behind it. The incognito called upon him to stop, but his order was futile. The old man rolled from his donkey, collected his youthful speed, and never ceased running and hallooing “Aima! Aima!” till he reached the village of his home, and was safely ensconced in a fortifying circle of his fraternity. To them he related his adventure with some depth of colour: he said that a ghost had appeared to him dressed like a soldier, and for all the world like one of Fribourg’s men, but ghastly and lean, as a ghost should be. He narrated all the circumstances; and the tale reaching the ears of the police, a strict search was made over the face of the country, to ascertain the bodily condition of this spectre. The zeal and number of the persons so employed, soon led to the discovery they desired. In a rude, retired hovel, far from any inhabited quarter, they came upon some men whose looks were not so inhuman but they could recognize under them the six desperate Greeks of Fribourg’s regiment! Almost skeletons, their hair hanging about them unshorn and lank, their countenances distorted by disease, – the offspring of protracted want and bad food, they stood like shadows, or scarecrows, an easy capture to the police officers. After the first astonishment had passed away, and it was sure that no farther escape was possible or conceivable, they were questioned as to the mode by which they had preserved life, both during the explosion, which had been so fatal to so many, and afterwards when subjected to detection at every hour of the day. Without reluctance or concealment, Ieramachos gave answer to these enquiries, and told the singular tale which shall conclude this narrative.

“He said that from the first moment of occupying the magazine, he had projected a plan of escape, which was agreed to, and nobly sustained by his staunch associates. No part of their actions afterwards was the result of accident, but arose from the deliberate contrivance of one great plot. It was this. Being thoroughly acquainted with the dimensions and position of the fort, they believed from the first that it might be so undermined as to afford an egress to seaward, and they lost no time in attempting this plan of escape. While the besiegers lay quietly above them, they were employed in excavating, little by little, a passage to the sea-wall of the fortification, which they might make use of as they had the means. The softness of the rock facilitated their labour, and the progress they made was unexpectedly rapid. Having assured themselves of the practicability of an opening, the next difficulty was how to procure an opportunity of using it. This object was attended with many obstacles. The shell of the outer wall could not be burst open without some noise. By day there would be no chance of getting out unseen; and by night the sound of their operations would be distinctly heard. After long deliberations, the scheme was decided upon, which was executed as we have seen. Though actually in great distress, they determined to heighten the appearance of it, and so by degrees bring things to such an extremity that it might appear their pitiable condition drove them to their ultimate act of desperation. For this reason they made such repeated demonstrations of their misery, and finally put the consummation of their rebellious acts upon the pretext of extreme thirst. At the appointed hour they placed themselves at the farther end of their subterranean passage; and having laid a communicating train of gunpowder to the heart of the magazine, they awaited only the first bell of St. John’s Church as the signal for the hazardous experiment. At a moment quitting the train, and themselves bursting through the stone partition which bound their excavation, they were instantly beyond the reach of death, and of suspicion into the bargain. They relied on the effect of their own display of wretchedness to confirm the opinion that this act was the result of despair; and they knew that the blackened tunnel through which they had crawled, would be attributed to the fury of the explosion, and considered as a channel forcibly, hut spontaneously burst, by the volcano they had erected. – They were hitherto right in their surmises: but beyond this fortune deserted them. They wandered by stealth over the deserted parts of the sea-coast, in vain attempting to procure a boat, in which they might pass over to Sicily. Discovered once in a scheme to purloin a speronara[6] privily, they were in imminent danger of being then delivered up to justice, and were compelled to wait almost hopelessly for a more favourable time. The necessity of lying quite concealed prevented their procuring any but the vilest and least nutritive food. A few vegetables were all they had subsisted upon, but leaves and grass, since the hour of their escape. They bore up, however, manfully, and despite the extreme indigence to which they were reduced, no one committed himself by any unseasonable exposure until the day when one of the least provident, goaded by insufferable pangs of hunger, made the unlucky attempt upon the Maltese priest, which led to their detection.

“They were marched into the city, guarded by two lines of troops, and the forlorn aspect they presented will be remembered by many a spectator till his dying day. Even then they were not dejected. Their eyes were all brightness in the midst of their desolation, like a fire in the darkness of night; and the pitiful natives crouched beneath those glances which told that they were not malefactors, or could not so esteem themselves . In a few hours they were sentenced to the death they had so long succeeded in parrying; and in the last instant of life they manifested the same heroic bearing which has left in the minds of all who saw them a recollection glowing and full of admiration for the last of Fribourg’a regiment[7].”

The Melpomene afterwards proceeded up the Adriatic, where her boats, occasionally commanded by Lieutenant Badcock, captured several merchant vessels, and continually harassed the enemy’s coasting trade. She returned to England, with Lord Pembroke and his suite, passengers from Trieste, in Nov. 1807.

Mr. Badcock’s next appointment was to the Swiftsure 74, bearing the flag of Sir John B. Warren, under whom he served on the Halifax station until Feb. 1811. Whilst there, and doing duty as first lieutenant, he met with a very serious accident. All sail having been made in chase, he had given up the charge of the quarter-deck, and gone forward to look at the object of pursuit, when the jib flapped, and one of the sheets, coming in with a sudden jerk, broke his jaw and knocked out five teeth. About the same period. Captain Conn, of the Swiftsure, a much respected and most valuable officer, jumped overboard in a fit of derangement, and perished. This sad catastrophe occurred off the Bermudas, May 4, 1810.

On his return from America, Lieutenant Badcock was ordered to Lisbon, on promotion; and he had not been long there before Admiral Berkeley gave him the command of the Tritona hospital-ship, with permission to visit his brother, an officer in the 14th light dragoons, attached to Lord Wellington’s army. This indulgence afforded him an opportunity of witnessing a siege by land, as Badajos was taken during the time he remained with that distinguished corps: he also accompanied his brother nearly over the Alemtajo, and into Estramadura. On the 11th June, 1812, he received an order to act as commander of the Brune 38, in the channel armed en flûte, which appointment was confirmed by the Admiralty, on the 13th Aug. following.

In that ship, Captain Badcock successively visited Cadiz, Gibraltar, Minorca, Majorca, and Alicant; also Oran, in Barbary, where he supported the dignity of a British officer, by constantly refusing to pull off his boots before he went into the presence of the Bey, although his object, in seeking several audiences of that personage, was to obtain supplies for the British forces, and he observed that the Spanish Consul and others complied with a requisition so degrading.

Having conveyed those supplies to Alicant, Captain Badcock was ordered by Rear-Admiral Hallowell, under whose orders he had been placed, to take a station in Altea bay, for the protection of the watering place and town. Whilst at anchor there, he prevented a French foraging party, 300 strong, from levying a contribution upon the inhabitants of that place. He subsequently drove a small privateer on shore, near Denia, in the Gulf of Valencia; and obtained well-merited praise “for the assistance he afforded” Lieutenant-Colonel Prevost and Captain Charles Adam, while attached to the army, at the siege of the Col de Balaguer[8]. On the day after the surrender of that strong fortress, he set off with those officers and several others, to reconnoitre in the direction of Tortosa. The result of that expedition has been stated at p. 228 of Vol. II. Part I. Previous to his departure from the Mediterranean, he received, in common with the other officers of the squadron, the public thanks of Sir Edward Pellew, Rear-Admiral Hallowell, and Captain Adam, for his highly meritorious conduct during the whole of the operations in Catalonia: copies of the general memorandums conveying those thanks will be found sp4_p25.

After Sir John Murray’s unaccountable retreat from before Tarragona, the Brune conveyed that officer to Palermo; from whence she conveyed the 44th regiment to Spain, and Lord Mahon, his lady, and two sons, to Portsmouth. She subsequently took 700 troops to Holland, and 300 royal marines to North America, where she arrived about the end of May, 1814.

Captain Badcock was next employed in the blockade of Commodore Barney’s flotilla, up the Patuxent river; and he appears to have had frequent skirmishes with the enemy’s militia, when making excursions on shore, for the purpose of destroying their public buildings, watering his ship, and obtaining refreshments for her crew. On one of these occasions, a marine, named Patrick Gallaghan, behaved with great coolness and presence of mind, while posted at some distance from the working party. Observing five American horsemen ride down to the comer of a wood, from whence three of them galloped towards him, he immediately got behind a hay-stack, cocked his musket, and waited their approach: they passed without seeing him, and dismounted; when he instantly called out, “Surrender, you rascals, I have you all in a line, and by J___s I will shoot you altogether, if you do not throw down your arms !” – they immediately complied, and he marched them before him, horses and all, to the beach. Unfortunately this brave fellow was unfit for promotion being too fond of strong drink, and therefore could not be rewarded. This circumstance serves to shew how much an Order of Merit is wanted in the naval service; for how many hundreds of sailors and marines have, like Patrick Gallaghan, richly deserved medals, or some other honorary distinctions, who, for the same reason, could not be made petty or non-commissioned officers.

It will be seen by reference to pp. 9–14, that Captain Badcock commanded a subdivision of boats in the Washington expedition: we have, therefore, only to add, that he was away from his ship 18 days and nights; the whole time in an open boat. After the failure of the Baltimore expedition, he was left in the Chesapeake, under the orders of Captain Robert Barrie, with whom he proceeded above 90 miles up the Rappahannock river, and subsequently to the coast of Georgia. He also accompanied Captain Charles B. H. Ross up St. Mary’s, river[9]; displaying, on every occasion, his usual activity, courage, and zeal. On his return from the latter expedition, and being ordered to the Bahama islands, he received the following letter of thanks from his enterprising commodore:–

Dragon, off Cumberland Island, 28th Feb. 1816.

“Sir,– I cannot allow the Brune to leave this station without officially returning you my best thanks for the brave, able, zealous, and cheerful assistance I have on all occasions received from you while employed under my orders. I have not failed to make known my high sense of your deserving conduct to Rear-Admiral Cockburn, who, I am confident, will add his testimony of your very gallant and meritorious; conduct in his reports to the commander-in-chief; and it will give me great pleasure to learn, that they have obtained for you the notice of my Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. I have the honor to be, &c.

(Signed)Robert Barrie.”

To Captain Badcock, H.M.S. Brune.

On the 7th April, 1815, Rear-Admiral Cockburn wrote to Captain Badcock as follows:–

“Sir,– In transmitting to you the accompanying general order[10], which I request of you to make public to the officers and men under your command, I must beg particularly to request your acceptance of my thanks for the assistance I derived from you during the operations referred to, and to assure you of the unfeigned regard with which I have the honor to be. Sir, your very faithful, and most obedient humble servant,

(Signed)G. Cockburn.”

Captain Badcock brought home a body of troops, in June, 1815; and on the 19th of that month, Sir George Cockburn thus writes to him, from Loudon:

“Sir,– In reply to your letter of yesterday, I can have no hesitation in stating that the Activity, Gallantry, and Ability, invariably displayed by you, whilst serving under my immediate orders in America, proved highly satisfactory to me, beneficial to our Country, and honorable to yourself; end I therefore very sincerely hope you may meet with due success in your present application to the Admiralty, for an equally favorable consideration with your brother officers, you have alluded to, who lately distinguished themselves on the same station. I am, Sir, with much truth, your very faithful humble servant,

(Signed)G. Cockburn.”

Captain Badcock obtained post rank, Aug. 21, 1815; but his application for a Companionship of the Bath has not yet been attended to. He married, Jan. 2, 1822, Selina, youngest daughter of the late Sir Henry Harpur Crewe, Bart., granddaughter of the Right Hon. Lady Frances Harpur, and sister to the present Sir George Crewe, Bart.

His brother. Major Lovell Badcock, served with great honor to himself during the whole of Lord Wellington’s campaigns, was wounded at the battle of Fuentes d’Onor, and is still in the 14th light dragoons. His eldest sister, Anne, is married to Major-General Jasper Nicolls, C.B. who distinguished himself, when Major of the 45th, and Lieutenant-Colonel of the 14th foot, at Corunna and Walcheren. His youngest sister, Sophia, is the wife of the Rev. James Duke Coleridge, eldest son of Colonel J. Coleridge, of Ottery St. Mary’s, in Devonshire.

Agent.– J. Copland, Esq.



  1. See Vol. I. Part II. p. 493 et seq. and Suppl. Part III. p. 322.
  2. See Vol. II. Part I. pp. 231–233.
  3. See Suppl. Part III. note at p. 250.
  4. The former was Mr. Badcock
  5. “The commencing words of a stanza of the only indigenous song Malta can boast. They may be thus rendered–

    “‘I love you in my heart,’

    “And proceed with –

    “‘But I hate you before the people:
    There is no reason to ask me why;
    You, darling, know the reason.’

  6. Speronara, a little picturesque boat, commonly seen on the channel between Malta and Goza.
  7. About 55 were executed.
  8. See Suppl. Part III pp. 201–204.
  9. See Vol. II. Part II. pp. 733 et seq. and 737 et seq.
  10. See Vol. II. Part II. p. 738.