Royal Naval Biography/Burdett, George
GEORGE BURDETT, Esq
[Post-Captain of 1802.]
This officer was first Lieutenant of the Egmont 74, commanded by the present Admiral Sir John Sutton, in the action off Cape St. Vincent, Feb. 14, 1797; and commanded la Sophie sloop of war, on the Newfoundland station, during the last three years of the French revolutionary war. He was nominated to a command in the Irish Sea Fencibles about Dec. 1803; and appointed to the Maidstone frigate towards the latter end of 1811. From that period he was principally employed on the Halifax station, till the close of the contest between Great Britain and the United States.
On the 1st of Aug. 1812, the boats of the Maidstone and Spartan destroyed two American privateers in the bay of Fundy; and two days afterwards attacked and brought out a revenue cutter of 6 guns, pierced for 10, and three schooners mounting 2 guns each. On the 17th Oct. following, the same ships captured the Rapid, a fine privateer brig, of 14 guns and 84 men.
In Feb. 1813, we find Captain Burdett employed in the Chesapeake, with a squadron of frigates under his orders, the activity of which, in annoying the enemy, may be inferred from the following copy of a general memorandum issued by Rear-Admiral Cockburn:
“H.M.S. Marlborough, Lyn-haven Bay, Chesapeake, Mar. 4, 1813.
“Gen. Mem.– Captain Burdett having transmitted to me the copy of a letter, dated Feb. 9, 1813, which he has written to the commander-in-chief, giving an account of the capture of the Lottery (a schooner of 12 guns) in a most gallant style, by a division of boats under the command of Lieutenant Nazer; and the copy of another letter, dated the 14th Feb., stating the invariably gallant, active, and zealous conduct of every officer and man of the small squadron of frigates lately employed in this bay under his orders, I cannot resist anticipating the Commander-in-chief in taking public notice thereof, and in requesting the respective Captains of the said frigates to make known to their officers and crews, the high sense I entertain of their good conduct – the honor such behaviour does to themselves and their country – and to assure them how highly satisfied the Commander-in-chief will be when he receives these accounts, and that I am sure he will not fail to inform the Admiralty and their Country thereof, with due encomiums, also to request the respective Captains will transmit immediately to the Secretary of the Patriotic Fund, the necessary certificates to obtain, with the least possible delay, for those who have been wounded, the usual necessary rewards.
(Signed)“Geo. Cockburn, Rear-Admiral.”
“To the Captains of the Maidstone,
Belvidere, Junon, Statira, and Laurestinus.”
Captain Burdett married, first, in 1802, a daughter of Lieutenant-General Whitelocke, at that period LieutenantGo vernor of Portsmouth; and, secondly, May 15, 1806, the only daughter of Colonel Brown, of Glennagary, in the county of Dublin.
Agent.– J. Copland, Esq.
- The Lottery was from Baltimore bound to Bourdeaux, with a cargo of coffee, sugar, and logwood. So obstinate was her defence, that of a complement of 28 men, no less than 19, including her commander, were dangerously wounded. The British boats had only 6 wounded. Having but an imperfect list at present of the numerous captures in which Captain Burdett was concerned whilst on the American coast, we shall defer noticing them more fully until the publication of our promised Supplement to the Addenda contained in Vol. I.