A |  B |  C |  D |  E |  F |  G |  H |  I |  J |  K |  L |  M |  N |  O |  P |  Q |  R |  S |  T |  U |  V |  W |  X |  Y |  Z

Use quotes like in "Aboukir Bay" to search phrases.
Use * as a wildcard like in "Trafalg*".

SHANNON (38) Built in 1806, Frindsbury.
Receiving ship in 1832.

  • 1806 Capt. Philip Bowes Vere BROKE, 06/1806, from DRUID.
  • 1807 SHANNON, with MELEAGER in company, was sent to protect the whale fishery off Greenland in April.
    On 7th. May they encountered ice but pushed through to reach the southern part of Spitzbergen on 17 June.
    They surveyed the Bay of Magdalena at 80 deg N. then reached 80 deg 6min N. before being stopped by ice.
    Turning to the west the coast of Greenland was reached on 23 July.
    The two ships cruised from Shetland in the autumn and SHANNON returned to Yarmouth at the end of September.
  • When the Portuguese Government declared war on Great Britain at the end of 1807 SHANNON joined Sir Samuel HOOD's expedition against Madeira.
    The island was captured after a show of force and Capt. BROKE was ordered to convoy the transports back to England.
    They arrived on 7 February 1808.
  • In November 1808 SHANNON took the French frigate THETIS in tow after she had been captured by Capt. SEYMOUR in AMETHYST.
  • 1809 With the Channel Fleet. She captured the French privateer cutter POMMEREUIL (14) after a long chase to leeward on 27 January.
    Her 60 men were commanded by Felix d'Allemende and in the 14 days she had been out from Havre de Grace she had only captured a transport with troops which she released.
    Capt. BROKE sent the prize into Plymouth On 5 July 1812 Capt. BROKE with AFRICA, BELVIDERA and AEOLUS under his command (the squadron later included GUERRIERE) was ordered by Vice-Ad. SAWYER to blockade American ports.
    On the 16th. he captured the American brig NAUTILUS (16), off Sandy Hook.
    With a crew of 106 men under Capt. Crane she was 24 hours into an unfruitful cruise from New York.
    The same evening the squadron gave chase to the American frigate CONSTITUTION (56), which was on her way from Chesapeake Bay to New York.
    After a chase of 65 hours, during which both pursued and pursuers had to tow and warp, the BELVIDERA came within gun shot of the enemy on the afternoon of the 17th. but a lucky breeze and a clean bottom enabled CONSTITUTION to make her escape.
  • Capt. BROKE then sailed to meet the home bound Jamaican convoy which was under threat from an American squadron under Commodore Rogers which had sailed from New York to intercept it.
    He saw the convoy safely over the Great Banks then returned to the American coast to attack merchant shipping.
    SHANNON arrived in Halifax on 20 September to victual and water.
    While she was here Sir John WARREN arrived from England to become Commander in Chief.
  • SHANNON and the BREAM schooner were then sent to Sable Island to rescue the crew of the BARBADOES which had been wrecked there and to save the specie she had been carrying.
    While on this mission SHANNON captured an enemy privateer which she brought into Halifax.
  • During a subsequent cruise with TENEDOS, NYMPHE and CURLEW under his orders, Capt BROKE captured the American privateer brig THORNE on 31 October. She was armed with eighteen long 9-pounders and, with a crew of 140 men, was on her first cruise; three weeks out of Marblehead.
  • Sir John WARREN spent the winter of 1812 at Bermuda leaving Capt. BROKE in command of the squadrons on the coasts of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and New England.
    In December he escorted a homebound convoy half way across the Atlantic and returned round the Azores.
  • 1813 On 21 March Capt. OLIVER in VALIANT (74) relieved him of the command of the northern station.
    When SHANNON and TENEDOS were separated from the rest of the squadron in a gale they steered for Boston reaching there on 2 April.
    When they returned to the squadron to report the presence of CONGRESS, PRESIDENT and CONSTITUTION in the harbour, the CHESAPEAKE entered Boston through the eastern channel.
    Capt. CAPEL in HOGUE (74) in command of the squadron, ordered SHANNON and TENEDOS to watch close inshore while the rest cruised in the offing.
  • On 16 May they chased on shore near Cape Ann Town a large armed ship under American colours.
    After anchoring close to her and firing a few shots to disperse the militiamen who were assembling, Lieut. George WATT of SHANNON brought her off without loss. She proved to be the French corvette-built privateer INVINCIBLE (16), which had been captured in the Bay of Biscay by by MUTINE on 17 April and retaken by the American privateer ALEXANDER. (ALEXANDER was driven ashore off Kenebank by RATTLER on 19 May.) Capt. BROKE sent her into Halifax.
  • On 25 May he took provisions and water from TENEDOS and detached he with orders to rejoin on 14 June.
  • On 1 June Capt. BROKE sent a challenge to Capt. James Lawrence of the USS CHESAPEAKE, which was then re-fitting in Boston, offering single ship combat.
    The boat manned by a discharged American prisoner, Mr Slocum, had not reached the shore with the challenge when CHESAPEAKE was seen under way. She was flying three American ensigns and a large white flag at the fore inscribed 'Free Trade and Sailor's Rights'.
    The two ships met at half past five in the afternoon 20 miles east of Boston lighthouse between Cape Ann and Cape Cod. SHANNON was flying a a rusty blue ensign at the peak and and her outside appearance suggested that she would be an easy opponent.
  • SHANNON scored the first hit when William MINDHAM, gun captain of one of her starboard 18-pounders fired two round shot and a bag of musket balls which hit an American gunport.
    After exchanging two or three broadsides in which the enemy's decks were cleared by grape and round shot from SHANNON's 32-pounder carronades, the CHESAPEAKE fell on board SHANNON, lying athwart her starboard bow and caught by one of SHANNON's anchors.
    This exposed the American main-deck to a tremendous fire from SHANNON's after guns through the port holes leaving many killed and wounded.
    A small open cask of musket cartridges abaft the mizzen-mast of the CHESAPEAKE blew up and as the smoke cleared away Capt. BROKE gave the order to board.
  • The boatswain, Mr STEVENS, lost an arm as he attempted to lash the two ships together and the purser, Mr G. ALDHAM, and the clerk, Mr John DUNN, were killed as they led a party of small-arm men over a gangway.
    In four minutes the Americans called for quarter although the first lieutenant, Mr George T. L. WATT, was shot in the forehead by a grape-shot as hoisted the British colours.
    Capt. BROKE received a severe sabre wound as he charged a party of the enemy who had rallied on the forecastle and he was forced to hand control of the SHANNON to Lieut. WALLIS.
    As he sat wounded the captain was able to save the life of a young American midshipman who slid down a rope from the fore-top.
    Lieut. Charles Leslie FALKINER, who headed the main-deck boarders, took command of the prize.
    While the two yard arms were locked together, Mr COSNAHAM, who commanded the main-top, laid out on the main yard-arm to fire on the enemy and killed three of them.
    Mr SMITH, in the fore-top, stormed the enemy fore-top over the yard-arm and killed all the Americans there.
    SHANNON lost 23 slain and 56 wounded.
    CHESAPEAKE lost about 60 killed, including the four lieutenants, the master and many other officers.
    Capt. Lawrence was mortally wounded by fire from SHANNON's fore-top and had been carried below before boarding commenced. A similar number were wounded.
    A large cask of un-slaked lime stood open on CHESAPEAKE's forecastle and a bag of the same in the fore-top. The intention was to throw handfuls into the eyes of SHANNON's men as they attempted to board. This was regarded as unfair and dishonourable by the British sailors.
    SHANNON's midshipmen during the action were Messrs. SMITH, LEAKE, CLAVERING, RAYMOND, LITTLEJOHN and SAMWELL.
    The latter was the only other officer wounded.
    Mr ETOUGH, the acting master, conned the ship into action.
    Lieuts. WALLIS and FALKINER were both promoted to commander and Messrs. ETOUGH and SMITH to lieutenant.
    In the following November Capt. BROKE was made a Baronet and the Court of Common Council of London awarded the freedom of the city and a sword worth 100 guineas. Other presentations included a piece of plate worth 750 pounds and a cup worth 100 guineas.
  • SHANNON went into the action with 276 officers seamen and marines of her proper complement; 8 recaptured seamen; 22 Irish labourers who had been 48 hours in the ship, and of whom only 4 could speak English, and 24 boys, of whom about 13 were under 12 years of age.
  • On her return to England SHANNON was found unfit for further service.

back  |  intro  |  home  |  contact

© 1995, 2007 Michael Phillips