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"The Human Price: Mrs. Phelan on HMS Swallow, 1812" Topic

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28 Mar 2019 1:09 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Removed from Napoleonic Media board

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18th Century
19th Century

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP28 Mar 2019 1:02 p.m. PST

"The inshore-operations of the Royal Navy during the Napoleonic Wars were characterised by aggressive daring and were critical in hampering and often paralysing the coastal traffic of every maritime nation controlled or occupied by the French. As such they are the inspiration of so much naval fiction. It is however easy to forget the price paid in human misery and this article deals with one of the most pathetic of such instances and a humble heroine who found herself aboard HMS Swallow in 1812 adn who deserves to be remembered with honour.

HMS Swallow entered service in 1805, yet another of the Cruizer-class brigsthat featured so prominently in so many inshore-operations. Of 386 tons, and 100-feet long, she was armed with massive firepower for her size sixteen 32-pounder carronades and two 6-pounder long guns. Her crew was officially 121 but, as told later in this article, she was carrying at least two other people. In July 1812 she was to be involved in a vicious encounter with a French brig-corvette Reynard off Frejus, on the Mediterranean coast. Under the command of Commander Edward Reynolds Sibley (Circa 1775 1842), HMS Swallow was part of a small British squadron consisting in addition of the "74" ship-of-the-line" HMS America and the frigate HMS Curacoa. Together they had driven a French convoy from Genoa to seek shelter in shallow waters and under shore batteries at Frejus a scenario that must have been almost monotonously familiar during the period. The larger British ships drew too much to go inshore, leaving HMS Swallow to reconnoitre…."


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goragrad28 Mar 2019 10:01 p.m. PST

Quite interesting.

Personal logo Andrew Walters Supporting Member of TMP29 Mar 2019 9:33 a.m. PST

Wow, that is a story.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP29 Mar 2019 11:49 a.m. PST

Happy you enjoyed it my friends!. (smile)


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