HMS Dauntless (1808)
|Launched:||20 December 1808|
|Class and type:||Cormorant-class ship-sloop|
|Tons burthen:||42266⁄94 (bm)|
|Beam:||29 ft 7 in (9.02 m)|
|Depth of hold:||9 ft (2.7 m)|
She was launched on 20 December 1808 and commissioned in July 1809 under Commander Josiah Wittman. Her first service was in November 1809, when she escorted a convoy to the African coast. Wittman died in January 1810. His replacement, in May 1810, was Commander Daniel Barber.
Still, on 16 May 1812, Dauntless arrived at Portsmouth from Jamaica. She had left there on 31 March, escorting a convoy of 32 vessels. On 29 April she parted from them at 35°15′N 56°58′W in a gale.
On 3 December 1813 a gale dismasted the transport Phoenix, Heller, master, at 46°2′N 9°9′W as she was sailing from Portsmouth to the Cape of good Hope. Dauntless came upon Phoenix on 5 December and took her in tow, arriving at Plymouth on 18 December. Also on 6 December, Dauntless came upon Renown, Mait, master, at 45°19′N 9°54′W, also dismasted. Barber had to leave Renown as Dauntless was towing Phoenix. However, Renown, which had been sailing from London to Bahia, was able to make her way to The Downs.
On 7 February 1815, a party of American militia captured a tender to Dauntless near St James Island, in Chesapeake Bay. The tender was armed with one 12-pounder carronade and some swivel guns, and had a crew of 19 men under the command of a lieutenant.
Between June 1818 and February 1819 Dauntless underwent repairs and fitting out at Portsmouth. In November 1818, she was recommissioned under Commander Valentine Gardner for service in the East Indies.
Over the next five years, Dauntless visited China, New Zealand, South America, the Pacific archipelagos and New South Wales. Valentine died in November 1820. His replacement was Commander John Norman Campbell (acting). Captain George Gambier assumed command in June 1821.
On 14 August 1821 local inhabitants massacred 10 of the 12 men in a landing party from the whaler Coquette at Hanamenu on the island of Hiva Oa in the Marquesas Islands. The landing party had the misfortune to arrive as a local war commenced and one side assumed they were enemy. Gambier and Dauntless were sent to investigate and exact reprisals.
In company with members of the Philosophical Society of Australasia fixed a suitably engraved bronze tablet on a "beetling rock" on the south head of Botany Bay to commemorate the first landing of Captain James Cook and Sir Joseph Banks in Australia in 1770. The tablet has not been seen for some years. Dauntless sailed through Torres Strait to Trincomalee to rejoin the fleet, and returned to Portsmouth to pay off in October 1823.
Notes, citations, and references
- Winfield (2008), p.262.
- Lloyd's List, n° 4666.
- Lloyd's List, n°4831.
- Lloyd's List, n°4832.
- "No. 16943". The London Gazette. 8 October 1814. p. 2009.
- "No. 17376". The London Gazette. 7 July 1818. p. 1224.
- Niles Weekly (15 April 1815), p.108.
- Dalton (1990), pp.16 &70-1. Dalton 70-71.
- "No. 18097". The London Gazette. 8 January 1825. p. 44.
- Colledge, J. J.; Warlow, Ben (2006) . Ships of the Royal Navy: The Complete Record of all Fighting Ships of the Royal Navy (Rev. ed.). London: Chatham Publishing. ISBN 978-1-86176-281-8.
- Dalton, William (1990) The Dalton Journal: Two Whaling Voyages to the South Seas, 1823-1829. (National Library of Australia). ISBN 0642105057
- Winfield, Rif (2008). British Warships in the Age of Sail 1793–1817: Design, Construction, Careers and Fates. Seaforth. ISBN 1-86176-246-1.
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