Open main menu

Royal Naval Biography/Hawtayne, Charles Sibthorp John


CHARLES SIBTHORP JOHN HAWTAYNE, Esq.
[Post-Captain of 1807.]

Second son of the Rev. William Hawtayne, thirty-four years Rector of Elstree, co. Hertford, in early life an Ensign in the third regiment of foot-guards; and at the commencement of the French revolutionary war, being offered the chaplaincy of the Defence 74, by Captain Gambier, he embarked in that ship, and entered the subject of this memoir, July 18, 1793.

Having served the usual period of six years, this officer was appointed Lieutenant of the Espiegle sloop, employed in the expedition against Holland, Aug. 24, 1799; and subsequently joined the Greyhound frigate, Captain Charles Ogle, on the Mediterranean station, where, in common with many other officers, he received a gold medal from the Turkish government, at the close of the Egyptian campaign. His next appointment was, in 1803, to the Isis 50, bearing the flag of Vice-Admiral Gambier, commander-in-chief at Newfoundland; and in the following year we find him proceeding to India with Sir Edward Pellew, by whom he was successively appointed acting Captain of the Duncan frigate, and Governor, pro tempore, of the Royal Naval Hospital at Madras. His commission as Commander was confirmed Jan. 31, 1806.

In the summer of 1807, whilst commanding the Cephalus of 18 guns, he conveyed Mr. Gambier, Consul General, to Lisbon; and on the 13th Oct. in the same year, was promoted to post rank. The Rev. Mr. Hawtayne having accompanied Admiral Gambier, on board the Prince of Wales, to Copenhagen, on the memorable fall of that place the Admiral made this special request in favor of the son; an instance of such disinterested and truly kind feeling that we are requested by Captain Hawtayne to state it.

We next find this officer commanding the Quebec frigate; and, in 1810 and 1811, reporting the capture of the following armed vessels, on the North Sea Station:

L’Imperatrice French lugger privateer, of 14 guns and 60 men (only 42 on board); taken after a chase of 24 hours.

Two French lugger-rigged galleys, each carrying 25 men (the whole of whom escaped); brought off from Egmont-op-Zee.

A privateer schuyt, of 4 guns and 25 men; driven on shore near the Texel, by the Idas cutter, Lieutenant Duncan; and gallantly brought off by him to the frigate.

Le Jeune Louise, French schooner privateer, 14 guns and 60 men (only 35 on board), cut out in a most gallant manner from her anchorage in the Vlie Stroom, by the boats of the Quebec, under the command of Lieutenant Stephen Popham, assisted by Lieutenant Richard Augustus Yates.

Le Renard French cutter privateer, 6 guns and 24 men, taken by the Kite sloop of war, in company with the Quebec.

Four gun-vessels (their joint force 13 heavy cannon and 102 men), attacked at noon day, in a strung position, upon the flats within the island of Norderney, coast of East Friesland, and captured by the boats of a squadron detached from Admiral Young’s fleet, consisting of the Quebec, Raven sloop. Redbreast and Exertion gun-brigs, and Princess Augusta and Alert cutters, Aug. 3, 1811. Honorable mention is made of this exploit by Admiral Young, commander-in-chief, in his official letter of the 11th Aug. forwarding Captain Hawtayne’s report. Lieutenant Samuel Blyth, first of the Quebec, was immediately advanced to the rank of Commander: and other junior officers promoted.

La Christine Charlotte cutter, commanded by a French Lieutenant, and manned with 12 of the Douanes Imperiales: taken by the same boats, sent from the frigate at anchor in the Weser.

And, l’Olympia, a large French cutter privateer, of 10 eighteen-pounders and 79 men, out only twenty-four hours from Dunkirk, upon a six weeks’ cruise; captured by the Quebec, Oct. 30, 1811.

The Quebec, being found unfit for sea, was paid off in 1812; and Captain Hawtayne’s next appointment was, Jan. 15, 1816, to the Scamander of 42 guns, fitting for three years’ service, on the West India station; but being visited by a heavy domestic calamity at that time, he exchanged into the Florida, 24, and was chiefly employed superintending the revenue cruisers in the North Sea, until 1819.

This officer has been twice married; first to Elizabeth, second daughter of the late George Griffin Stonestreet, Esq. of Clapham, High Sheriff for the county of Surrey, in 1800; by whom he had three sons and two daughters. Secondly, in Feb. 1820, to Anne, daughter of the late Commissioner Charles Hope. He has two relations in the church, viz. the Rev. George Griffin Stonestreet (cousin and brother-in-law), domestic chaplain to the Duke of York; and the Rev. John Hawtayne (younger brother), D.D., Archdeacon of Bombay.