Royal Naval Biography/Warren, Samuel

A Companion of the most Honorable Military Order of the Bath.
[Post-Captain of 1802.]

This officer was born at Sandwich, co. Kent, Jan. 9, 1769; entered the naval service in Jan. 1782; and served his time as a Midshipman on board the Sampson 64, Busy cutter, Druid frigate, Colossus 74, London 98, and Royal Sovereign of 100 guns. The former ship was commanded by the late gallant Captain John Harvey[1], and formed part of the fleet under Lord Howe at the relief of Gibraltar, and in the subsequent action with the combined forces off Cape Spartel, on which occasion she had two men killed.

Mr. Warren obtained the rank of Lieutenant, Nov. 3, 1790; and served as such successively in the Argo of 44 guns, Ramillies 74, and Royal George, a first rate.

The Ramillies, commanded by Captain Henry Harvey, brother of Lieutenant Warren’s former commander, bore a part in the battles of May 29, and June 1, 1794, and was much cut up in her sails and rigging; fortunately, however, she only sustained a loss of 5 men killed and 7 wounded. The Royal George bore the flag of Lord Bridport in the action off l’Orient, June 23, 1795[2].

Lieutenant Warren was promoted to the rank of Commander’ in March, 1797; and from that period till July 1800, he commanded the Scourge sloop of war at the Leeward Islands, on which station he captured several large privateers and merchantmen. Among the latter were a letter of marque and a brig, bound to la Guira with wine, brandy, and merchandise. Previous to his return home he received the thanks of the Counsel and Assembly of Tobago, for the great attention he had paid to their interest, whilst employed in the protection of the trade of that island. The Scourge arrived in England Aug. 22, 1800.

Captain Warren’s next appointment was to the Vesuvius bomb, fitting at Portsmouth. His post commission bears date April 29, 1802.

In the summer of 1805, he was selected by Rear-Admiral Domett to serve as his Flag-Captain in the Channel fleet; but ill health obliging that officer to give up the idea of going to sea at that period, the Glory of 98 guns, which had been fitted for his reception, was ordered to receive the flag of Rear-Admiral Stirling, under whom Captain Warren served in the action between Sir Robert Calder and M.Villeneuve, on the 22d July in the same year. The following are extracts from the Rear-Admiral’s letter to the commander-in-chief, dated July 24.

“The great object I had in view was to obey your orders, by keeping in a compact line, whilst the signal for that purpose remained in force; and therefore, as the Raisonable closed with you, my Captain took care that nothing could pass between her and this ship. * * * * We had only 1 man killed and 4 wounded; * * * *. I have great pleasure in bearing testimony to the zeal of Captain Warren and his officers, and feel much confidence from the good conduct of the crew belonging to the ship where my flag is flying, if our good fortune should again lead us against the foes of our country.”

In the ensuing year, Captain Warren accompanied Rear-Admiral Stirling to the Rio de la Plata, as a passenger, on board the Sampson 64; and on his arrival off Maldonado, he assumed the command of that officer’s flag-ship, the Diadem, of similar force. His services during the siege of Monte Video, on which occasion the Diadem was frequently left with only 30 men on board, were duly acknowledged in the naval and military dispatches announcing the capture of that fortress, an account of which will be found in our first volume, at p. 406, et seq.

Some time after his return from South America, Captain Warren was appointed to the Bellerophon 74 bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Lord Gardner, in the North Sea. We subsequently find him on the Baltic station, where he was very actively employed under the orders of Sir James Saumarez, Bart.[3] His next appointment was, about Sept. 1810, to the President frigate, in which he assisted at the reduction of Java and its dependencies by the military and naval forces under Sir Samuel Auchmuty and Rear-Admiral Stopford. Whilst on that service he was sent to Cheribon with a flag of truce, to demand the surrender of that place; and after hoisting the English colours on the fort, succeeded in securing the persons of General Jamelle, commander-in-chief of the enemy’s troops, M. Knotze aid-de-camp to the Governor of Java, and M. Rigaud, an officer of infantry, who had stopped at the Landroost’s, some distance from Cheribon, for the purpose of changing their horses, and who would have effected their escape to the eastward but for his promptitude in running thither with only a few marines, to arrest them in their flight. The fort of Cheribon mounted 12 guns and 4 brass swivels, and had a garrison of 133 men. This and other services performed by a squadron of frigates, to which the President was attached, were of great importance to the ultimate result of the campaign[4].

Captain Warren has since commanded in succession the Blenheim and Bulwark, third rates, and Seringapatam of 46 guns. The latter ship conveyed Sir Benjamin Bloomfield, Ambassador to the Court of Sweden, to Stockholm, in the summer of 1823; and was paid off at Portsmouth, Feb. 5, 1824. Previous to their separation her officers gave Captain Warren a sumptuous farewell dinner, and presented him with a gold snuff-box, value thirty guineas, as a small token of their warm attachment and sincere respect.

Captain Warren married, in Dec. 1800, a daughter of Barton, Esq. Clerk of the Cheque at Chatham, and by that lady has had seven children, five of whom are now living. He was nominated a C.B. in 1815.

Agents.– Messrs. Brine, Chards, and Co.


(Vol II. Part I. p. 572.)

This officer was appointed to the William and Mary yacht, July 22d, 1830, and captain-superintendent of Woolwich dock-yard, with the full powers and authority of a commissioner, Dec. 1st, 1831.

  1. See Vol. I. note at p. 613.
  2. See Vol. I. pp. 75, and 246, et seq.
  3. An account of the destruction of a Russian battery by the Bellerophon’s boats, will be found under the head of Commander Robert Pilch; and the capture of a convoy on the coast of Finland will be noticed in our memoir of Commander Charles Allen, the senior surviving officer employed oa that occasion.
  4. See Captain James Hillyar, C.B.