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OTTER (18) Built in 1805, Hull.
Harbour Service in 1814.
Sold in 1828.

  • 1805 John DAVIES (1), off Boulogne.
  • 1807 In the summer of 1807 she sailed for Monte Video which had been captured by the British the previous February.
    On board as a passenger was Lieut. Nisbet WILLOUGHBY, late of the ROYAL GEORGE, who was going out to take command of a captured Spanish corvette, FUERTE. When OTTER arrived in the river they found that General Whitelock had surrendered at the moment of victory and FUENTE was back in Spanish hands. Lieut. WILLOUGHBY continued in OTTER to the Cape of Good Hope where he succeeded Capt. DAVIES in the command of that sloop on 10 January 1808.
    His commission was confirmed by the Admiralty on 9 April.
  • 1808 Nisbet Josiah WILLOUGHBY, Cape of Good Hope.
    On his first cruise he accompanied the frigate NEREIDE off the Ile de France (Mauritius) and his strict discipline was investigated by a court martial ordered by Vice-Ad. BERTIE on their return to the Cape.
    He was honourably acquitted.
    On 14 October 1809 Capt. WILLOUGHBY discovered a merchant brig and a lugger with a gunboat under batteries at Black River, Cape Brabant, Mauritius.
    To avert suspicion OTTER bore away for Bourbon (Reunion) but returned after dark and launched an attack with Capt. WILLOUGHBY in the gig, Lieut. John BURN in the yawl and midshipman William WEISS in the jolly-boat.
    The lugger was secured and the yawl and the jolly-boat detached to attack the brig where they had to board under a heavy fire of musketry from a body of soldiers. She was taken after short struggle but it proved impossible to bring her off and, because many of the prisoners were wounded, she had to be abandoned.
    The lugger was towed out under heavy fire from batteries on both sides of the river.
    OTTER lost one man killed and three wounded.
  • On 21 September 1809 a detachment of his Majesty's and East India company troops, numbering 368 officers and men, reinforced with marines and seamen from RAISONABLE (64), Capt. Edward LLOYD, and OTTER, were disembarked from NEREIDE south of the Point de Galotte, seven miles from St. Paul's on Reunion (then called Bourbon).
    They immediately advanced towards the town before the enemy could discover them, and took two batteries.
    Capt. WILLOUGHBY, who commanded a detachment of 100 seamen, then turned the guns on the enemy's shipping, including the 46-gun frigate CAROLINE, which had been firing grape from within a pistol-shot of the beach.
    When the enemy was reinforced and the British squadron off shore was as yet unable to stand in to help them, Capt. WILLOUGHBY was ordered to spike the guns in the two batteries and use his seamen to man a third one.
    This enabled the troops to advance and take two more batteries and their fire was the directed against the French shipping. When the town was in British hands the batteries were destroyed and all the troops were re-embarked the same evening. OTTER lost one marine private killed and one able seaman wounded.
  • The following day the French were observed advancing from St. Denis and marines and seamen under Capt. WILLOUGHBY were landed to burn and destroy public property.
    On the morning of the 23rd. the troops, seamen and marines were landed where the French had been seen the previous evening and Capt. WILLOUGHBY went in over the sand dunes with two of his gig's crew to see if he could locate them. He returned to his gig with a 9" brass mortar from a dismantled battery and the news that he had not seen a single Frenchman. The French Commandant then made contact and agreed to negotiations.
  • During the night of 2 October Capt. WILLOUGHBY accompanied Lieut. Colonel Keating, some army officers and a black pilot in OTTER's yawl, and was present while secret negotiations were conducted by the pilot in a native village. Following the information obtained from the black villager a battery at St. Gilles was taken without resistance the following day. Capt. WILLOUGHBY and his gig's crew then led an assault on another battery but when the town of St. Luce was found to be crowded with regular troops it was decided to abandon the advance and they embarked after destroying the guns.
    Capt. WILLOUGHBY was immediately promoted into the NEREIDE although his commission was not confirmed until 5 September 1810.
  • 1810 Capt. James TOMPKINSON.
    In August OTTER was dismantled for heaving down when Capt. TOMPKINSON received orders from Capt. ROWLEY to move with his ship's company into the transport WYNDHAM and join him off St Paul's.
    He declined because he considered WYNDHAM to be unfit for immediate service but her guns were fitted to the EMMA transport and Capt. LYNNE joined Capt. ROWLEY
  • BOADICEA, OTTER and STAUNCH sailed from St. Paul's Road, Reunion, on the morning of 12 September to attack two enemy frigates, ASTREA and IPHIGENIA, who were in the offing to windward. As they cleared the bay they were joined by AFRICAINE, Capt. CORBETT, which, having the wind, was able to come up with the enemy some four or five miles ahead of the others. Unfortunately the wind dropped and the AFRICAINE, raked by both frigates, was forced to surrender.
    Capt. ROWLEY in BOADICEA made sail to bring up OTTER and STAUNCH, then out of sight, and led them towards the enemy who abandoned AFRICAINE in charge of an officer and nine Frenchmen. On board were 83 of the crew and 31 wounded they had not had time to remove. Capt. CORBETT, the master and 36 men were killed.
    When BOADICEA, OTTER and STAUNCH anchored in St. Paul's Road, Mauritius, on the morning of 18 September three sail were seen in the offing so they weighed and went in pursuit. One of the enemy, which had a crippled frigate in tow, slipped the tow and made off. The other, after a short action, struck to BOADICEA and proved to be the 44-gun VENUS which, in company with the VICTOR corvette, had captured CEYLON earlier in the morning. OTTER took possession of the crippled CEYLON while BOADICEA took VENUS in tow and they brought them 1811 OTTER, with Lieut. CATOR acting as her commander, returned to England with duplicate dispatches from Vice-Ad. BERTIE announcing the capture of Mauritius on 3 December 1810.
    Lieut. CATOR delivered them to the Admiralty on 13 February, the originals were entrusted to Commodore ROWLEY in MENELAUS which arrived later.
  • Edward STOPFORD was appointed to command OTTER after his release from Mauritius, but he volunteered his services from SCIPIO where he was being carried as a supernumerary while he was waiting for her, to take part in the attack on Java in August 1811. He had his right arm carried off by a cannon shot but he made a good recovery and came home in CAROLINE.
    He delivered Rear-Ad. STOPFORD's dispatches to the Admiralty on 16 December.
  • 1814 OTTER was out of commission in Plymouth.

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