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Royal Naval Biography/Pigot, Hugh

[Post-Captain of 1804.]

This officer is nearly related to Lieutenant-General Sir George Pigot, whose father commanded the left wing of the British army at the battle of Bunker’s-hill, in North America, and was presented by his late Majesty with the Colonelcy of a regiment, for the activity, bravery, and firmness displayed by him on that memorable occasion.

Captain Pigot obtained post rank, May 8, 1804; and subsequently commanded the Alligator, Circe, Latona, Orpheus, and Nymphe, frigates. In April 1807, he captured l’Austerlitz, French privateer, of 18 guns and 125 men.

On the 2d Mar. 1808, the island of Mariegalante, which had long afforded shelter to the enemy’s small cruisers, and interfered considerably with the blockade of Guadaloupe, was taken possession of by a detachment of seamen and marines, under Captain Pigot, who found it in the highest state of cultivation, and a large quantity of colonial produce in the stores. This service was performed without loss, and Captain Pigot’s arrangements met with due commendation. On the 31st Oct. following, he captured the Palineur, French national brig, of 16 guns and 79 men, near Martinique. His ship (the Circe) sustained a loss of 2 men killed and wounded, owing to the enemy having sought refuge under a battery on the Diamond rock. The Palineur paid dearly for her obstinacy, having had 7 slain and 8 wounded.

At the commencement of 1809, Captain Pigot commanded the blockading squadron off Guadaloupe, and on the 10th Feb. in the same year we find him assisting at the capture of la Junon, French frigate, of 44 guns, which ship had been well beaten before he could close with her by Captain George Scott, of the Horatio[1]. On the 17th April following he witnessed the surrender of d’Hautpoult 74[2]; and on the 18th June captured la Felicité, pierced for 42 guns, but having only 14 of her main-deckers mounted, with a complement of 174 men. She had left Guadaloupe in company with another frigate, and was loaded with coffee, sugar, &c. for the use of the mother country.

During the latter part of the war, Captain Pigot was employed on the American station, where he captured the United States’ ship Frolic of twenty 32-pounder carronades, two long 18’s, 539 tons, and 171 men, April 20, 1814. The Orpheus had previously destroyed a privateer of 20, and a letter of marque mounting 8 guns. In accomplishing the destruction of the latter vessel, Lieutenant William Martin Collins, the only person hurt, was mortally wounded.

Agent.– Sir Francis Ommaney, M.P.