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"Need Info On French Corvettes "Cornelie" and "Galathee" 1863" Topic

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Personal logo The Virtual Armchair General Sponsoring Member of TMP18 Oct 2019 11:50 a.m. PST

As part of "Viva Juarez!: Wargames Resource Book on The Second French Intervention in Mexico," I am having no luck turning up illustrations and particulars of armament, dimensions, etc, of these two vessels which were part of the French Pacific Squadron during operations off Mexico's West Coast.

In particular, these sailing ships participated in the Bombardment of Acapulco, January 10, 1863. They were towed into action across the harbor by the steam frigates "Pallas" and "Diamant." I have info on the former, but still no particulars on the latter, either.

"Conways All the World's Warships: 1860-1905" only provides what I need on "Pallas," but none of the others.

I wish to include their images and stats with the account of the Acapulco event, as well as some other activities off Mexico.

Further, only about a week later, on the opposite coast, the French fleet took a drubbing off Tampico, losing the
steam vessel "Lance." I have contradictory info on this vessel's armament (one says two guns, the Mexicans themselves claiming they could salvage five), and no illustration

Any/all information on these vessels--indeed, the French Navy that served off Mexico--would be greatly appreciated and contributors of value will be credited in print.

Replies may be posted here and/or sent to me at

Hoping the walking encyclopedias here at TMP can once again pull my cookies from the fire!


Jcfrog Supporting Member of TMP18 Oct 2019 1:05 p.m. PST

Did you think of writing to the French museums and navy history service?

the research team in paris

guys in Vincennes might be caring enough to point you towards the proper place.

GildasFacit Sponsoring Member of TMP18 Oct 2019 1:30 p.m. PST

They are both listed on page 285 in the section on 'The French Navy in 1860'.

Described only as sailing corvettes of 22 guns.

Found them in

French Warships in the Age of Sail 1786 – 1861: Design, Construction …
By Rif Winfield, Stephen S Roberts

Galatee class
commissioned 1846 : 44x12m : 254 crew
guns : 26x160mm shell, 2x220mm shell

Adventure class (includes Cornelie)
comm 1860 : 43x12m : 229 men
guns : 16x160mm shell, 4x220mm shell, 2x30pr

Got the info from the book on Google books but you can only view parts of the details so this is the best I can do.

It surprises me that the armament of these is the same from 1848 to 1860, I'd have expected more modern guns by 1860 so these may not be correct for their guns at the later date.

It is, on reflection, possible that they were most likely to be used on colonial stations (lack of coaling facilities required sailers) where these older smoothbores would be more than adequate.

Hecoma18 Oct 2019 1:36 p.m. PST

That's what you're looking for


GildasFacit Sponsoring Member of TMP18 Oct 2019 2:36 p.m. PST

Cornelie isn't rearmed (with 14x140mm rifles) until 1874 so the original armament stated above is correct.

Good site that Hecoma, one I'd not found before.

Fanch du Leon18 Oct 2019 2:43 p.m. PST

Diamant is a post 1850 2nd rate Aviso "Curieux class" see link On the next page there are aviso's pictures: check the one titled Société anonyme des chantiers de l'océan. The following picture may be the Diamant (or Lynx?).

Yellow Admiral19 Oct 2019 1:35 a.m. PST

C'est magnifique! I wish I'd known about years ago.

- Ix

HMS Exeter Supporting Member of TMP19 Oct 2019 6:44 a.m. PST

Well now, that was impressive.

Personal logo The Virtual Armchair General Sponsoring Member of TMP19 Oct 2019 10:51 a.m. PST


As we Yanks say, you hit that one out of the ballpark!

Naturally, I have bookmarked the site and already begun to strip mine it of details.

The only possible disappointment is the lack of an illustration of "Lance," though her proper description and armament are complete. There may be one in some back issue of "L'Illustration Journal Universel," or one of the other contemporary French newspapers or magazines, though I'm not sure if any of those data bases are searchable.

If you wish to have your name appear in the Credits for "Viva Juarez!," please E-mail me at

In any event, the Website will be included in the lengthy list of resources consulted to compile the book. It is too valuable not to be shared in context with the Second French Intervention in Mexico.

And Gildas, I will follow up on the Google sourced book. It looks too good to pass up and may help fill in any gaps
La Flotte de Napoléon III might have.

I will never cease to be amazed at the width and depth of information that may be found among the Brethren here at TMP!

Milles Merci, Mon Amiral!


HMS Exeter Supporting Member of TMP19 Oct 2019 12:01 p.m. PST

Probably pretty suspect, but…


Personal logo The Virtual Armchair General Sponsoring Member of TMP19 Oct 2019 2:18 p.m. PST

HMS Exeter!

Thank you for the link, though I have this from "L'Illustration Journal Universel." I'm satisfied it's reasonably authentic regarding content, but not the clear illo of "Lance" I'd love to have, as I'm sure you'll agree.

Still, the best hope may indeed be from such sources, albeit perhaps before or even after the war. Her sisters "Tempeste" and "Tourmente" might have been pictured before, so I'll try for them, too.

Grateful still to all of you,

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