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HMS Caesar (1853)
|► The Royal Navy||Browse mid-Victorian RN vessels: A; B; C; D; E - F; G - H; I - L; M; N - P; Q - R; S; T - U; V - Z; ??|
|Launched||7 August 1853||Converted to screw||on the stocks|
|Builders measure||2767 tons|
|Fate||1870||Last in commission||1862|
|7 August 1853||Launched at Pembroke Dockyard.|
|21 January 1854|
- 7 March 1857
|Commanded (until paying off) by Captain John Robb, Devonport, then (1855) the Baltic during the Russian War|
|14 June 1858|
- 28 June 1859
|Commanded (from commissioning at Portsmouth) by Captain Charles Frederick, Channel squadron, then (June 1858) central America, then (October 1859) Mediterranean (ship's log)|
|2 July 1859|
- 1 February 1862
|Commanded (until paying off at Portsmouth) by Captain Thomas Henry Mason, Channel squadron|
|19 April 1870||Sold to C.J. Mare, for breaking up at Blackwall.|
|Extracts from the Times newspaper|
|We 28 April 1858||The Ordnance Department at Portsmouth are issuing munitions of war to the line-of-battle ships Victor Emmanuel, 91, Algiers, 91, and Caesar, 91, in readiness for commission. The Caesar, being fully rigged, is expected to be the first commissioned to form one of the Channel fleet.|
|Tu 10 August 1858||The Caesar, 91, left Spithead yesterday morning for a short cruise in the Channel.|
|We 18 August 1858||The Caesar, 91, screw ship of the line, arrived at Spithead yesterday at noon, from an eight days cruise.|
|Th 26 August 1858||The Orion, 91, screw, Captain Edwin C.T. D'Eyncourt, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Howe Freemantle, Commander-in-Chief of the Channel squadron; the Caesar, 91, screw, Captain Charles Frederick; the Renown, 91, screw, Captain Arthur Forbes; the Brunswick, 80, screw, Captain Erasmus Ommanney; and the Racoon, 21, screw, Captain James A. Paynter, sailed from Spithead yesterday for a short cruise in the Channel, the first movement of the Channel fleet.|
|We 1 September 1858||The Channel squadron, comprising the Orion, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Fremantle, the Brunswick, the Renown, the Caesar, and the Racoon, arrived in Plymouth Sound yesterday (Tuesday) evening.|
|Sa 4 September 1858||Admiral Freemantles squadron will probably sail from Plymouth today (Saturday) for Cork or Bantry Bay, where they will remain a short time, and then take a cruise for a fortnight, returning to Plymouth Sound.|
|Ma 6 September 1858|
In consequence of the dirty weather from the southward and westward, Admiral Fremantle's squadron, consisting of the Orion, Caesar, Brunswick, Renown, and Racoon, did not sail from Plymouth Sound for Ireland on Saturday Preparations are made for their departure to-day (Monday).
|Ma 4 October 1858||Admiral Fremantle's squadron hove in sight, near the Eddystone, at 9 o'clock yesterday (Sunday) morning. Wind, west south west; strong breeze. At 11 o'clock they were approaching Plymouth Sound in two divisions. The squadron includes the Renown, 91, Captain A. Forbes; the Victor Emmanuel, 91, Captain J. Wilcox; the Orion, 91, Captain D'Eyncourt; the Caesar, 90, Captain C. Frederick; the Brunswick, 81, Captain E. Ommanney; the Euryalus, 51, Captain J.W. Tarleton; the Diadem, 32, Captain W. Moorsom; and the Racoon, 22, Captain J.A. Paynter.|
|Th 21 October 1858||Her Majesty's ship Caesar, 91, screw, captain Frederick, is being prepared for foreign service at Devonport. It is probable that she will be ordered to reinforce the Mediterranean squadron.|
|Sa 23 October 1858||The screw steamship Caesar, 90, Captain Charles Frederick, and the screw steamship Diadem, 32, Captain William Moorsom sailed from Plymouth on Thursday for the West Indies.|
|Fr 29 April 1859||THE CHANNEL FLEET.- BEREHAVEN, April 23.-The ships of the Channel fleet that had been staying here for some months left to-day. They comprised the Royal Albert, the Renown, the Brunswick, the St. Jean d'Acre, and the Racoon. The Victor Emanuel and the Orion came in here with them, but early in March they were ordered to Tangier. It is said that these two vessels are to join the Channel fleet again, as also the Algiers and the James Watt, line-of-battle ships, and the Liffey, the Mersey, and the Doris, frigates. The Caesar and the Diadem are also returning from the West Indies to join, and the Euryalus from the Mediterranean. During their stay here the Marines and Naval Brigades were exercised on shore every week, as also in the boats. The Admiral, Sir Charles Freemantle, is most deservedly popular with all classes.- Cork Reporter.|
|Th 23 June 1859||Her Majesty's ship Caesar and Diadem, from Havannah on the 19th May, arrived in Plymouth Sound yesterday afternoon. All well.|
|Fr 24 June 1859||The screw steamship Caesar, 91, Captain Frederick, and the first-class heavy ordnance steam frigate Diadem, 32, Captain Moorsom, both from Havannah, May 19, arrived in Plymouth Sound on Wednesday afternoon, as reported in The Times of yesterday. They left England October, 21 for the West Indies, and have been employed principally off Greytown. Several young officers, chiefly mates, for the purpose of passing, have come home passengers. The Caesar, with the exception of some slight leaks, is in an efficient state, and her crew, about 820 men, healthy. In consequence of her heavy metal, the rolling which the Diadem had to endure while off Greytown strained her considerably, and she was, in consequence, obliged to leave the anchorage during heavy weather and go to sea. After a little caulking the Diadem will be ready for any duty, and she has only four sick in a complement of 475 well-disciplined men. On the passage home, June 2, she signalized a ship with the second distinguishing pendant No. 9,582; June 10, the schooner Jane, 84 days from Rio Grande, and the brig Hermann, from the Brazils for Bremen; June 11, the ship Latona, from Demerara; June 12, the ship Floating Light, from Bombay, and a ship, third distinguishing pendant No. 2,497, from South Australia; June 13, the Nil Desperandum, from the Mauritius; June 14, the bark Vandolla, from Demerara, and the bark Sultan, 24 days from New York; June 17, the brig Annie, and June 20, an English ship, second distinguishing pendant No. 9,582, from Whampoa.|
|We 6 July 1859||Capt. Moorsom, C.B. of the Diadem, is appointed to the Caesar, 91 in place of Capt. Charles Frederick, who now forms one of the Board of Admiralty.|
|Ma 18 July 1859||A short reference was made in The Times of Saturday to a disturbance which took place last week in Keyham steam-yard, Plymouth, consequent upon the flogging of a seaman on board the screw steamship Caesar, 91, then in the Queen's (or No. 1) Dock, under repair. From subsequent inquiry it appears that some of the circumstances were very unseemly, and not likely to raise the position of either the civil or naval branches of Her Majesty's service. It is almost impossible to obtain a correct statement of every particular, but it is evident that William Stephenson, a seaman attached to the tender of the Hogue, has made two unsuccessful attempts to incite the crew of the Caesar to acts of insubordination, if not of mutiny. On the second occasion be entreated them "to follow the example of the crew of the Liffey and roll the shot about the decks." He then assaulted the boatswain, Mr. Grigg. When tried he was sentenced to receive 50 lashes and be imprisoned two years. Formerly be might have been hung at the yard arm for the same offence. The Court left the selection of the ship for punishment to the discretion of the Port Admiral, and Sir Barrington Reynolds decided that where the crime was committed atonement should be made. Accordingly, soon after 6 o'clock on Thursday morning, the prisoner, guarded by a corporal and two Marines, and in charge of the master-at-arms of the Impregnable, was conveyed from the ship to the Caesar, and the sentence having been formally read to him in the presence of all the crew, he was divested of his blue serge frock and flannel, and lashed to a grating, across which two capstan bars had been fixed for the purpose of securing his hands and feet. The lower part of the grating rested on the deck, the upper was fastened to the starboard main rigging, and the culprit was thus brought in fall view of all the men engaged on the works. It happened most inopportunely that the hour of punishment, 7 o'clock, was that at which the artisans are "rung in," and they are not usually expected to commence work until five minutes after the bell ceases. Several on board the Caesar were sent ashore, no civilian being permitted to remain in a ship during punishment. There were about 400 in the vicinity, the greater number surrounded the ship, others went on board the Shadia (lying near in No. 2 dock), crowded her portholes, and, with the Turks, clustered on the fore and the main rigging of the half-dismantled ship. The yardsmen state that their feelings were excited in the first place by finding that naval punishment of such a severe character was about to be inflicted in their presence, within the precincts of a civil department; and secondly, by observing that the prosecutor at the court-martial, Mr. Grigg, the boatswain of the Caesar, was appointed to commence the execution of the sentence which he himself had invoked. It was with intense excitement that they saw him throw down his hat, pull off his jacket, moisten his hands, and clear the tails of the cat with his fingers.|
At the first blow a most disgusting term was applied by several of them to the boatswain who, after 12 lashes, was succeeded by three of his mates, the first of whom gave 12, the second 12, and the third 14 lashes, making the complement of 50.
Stephenson's cries of pain were accompanied by hisses, groans, and exclamations from the artisans and the Turks, which were repeated, notwithstanding Captain Mason's appeal to the former as Queen's men. Towards the close of the punishment an undignified conflict took place between the officers of the ship and the artisans. Captain Mason, who has just succeeded Captain Frederick in the command of the Caesar, ordered First-Lieutenant John Reid and Third-Lieutenant John C. Patterson, with Lieutenant Dixon, of the Royal Marines, to go on shore, clear the place, and secure the ringleaders. The officers were assisted by a guard of Marines: one of these, the sentry, who had his musket, grounded it, and is said to have brought the point of the bayonet towards the breast of one of the joiners. It is also stated that when Lieutenant Dickson was endeavouring to secure an artisan who had made himself conspicuous he was mobbed and knocked down by a painter. Several other conflicts occurred and some threats were muttered about the use of adzes and other formidable tools, and the removal of the shores for the purpose of capsizing the ship. Ultimately Bulay, a shipwright apprentice, captured by Lieutenant Reid, and Rissiter, a painter, were forced on board, but released immediately on declaring their names. On the arrival of the police of the establishment the artisans engaged on the Caesar were allowed to join her. The principal shipwright present was Mr. Burney, acting leading man engaged on the Turkish line-of-battle ship. He was in the afternoon suspended from duty by the Master-Attendant, Mr. Brown, who controls the yard in the absence of the Superintendent, Sir Thomas Pasley. Mr. Burney, who has been 36 years in the service, is represented by the artisans as having entreated his men .(several of whom are new hands) to go on board to their work. Bulay is also suspended. Rissetter, the contract painter, has been dismissed from the yard.
It is said to be 53 years since such a punishment was given on board a ship in Devonport Dockyard.
|Sa 30 July 1859||The screw ship Caesar, 90, Captain T.H. Mason went from Hamoaze on Thursday into Plymouth Sound. One of her cutters is fitted with Capt. Kynaston's plan for lowering boats.|
|Sa 20 August 1859||It is expected that the Channel fleet will leave Spithead this morning for a cruise of eight days off Ushant, at the end of which time it will return to port for three days, when it will again put to sea, and, being joined by Her Majesty's ship Caesar, from Devonport, will cruise until about the 20th of September, when it will form two divisions, one of which, it is supposed, will winter at Bantry Bay and the other at Portland.|
|We 24 August 1859||At half-past 6 o'clock on Saturday evening Her Majesty's ship Nile steamed out of Cork harbour with the intention of joining the Channel squadron at Spithead. It is thought likely that she will henceforth form portion of the squadron, and that the Hawke will continue for some time longer to hold the post of guardship in Queenstown.|
The screw steam despatch vessel Flying Fish, 6, Commander C. Hope, arrived at Plymouth on Monday, from the Channel fleet. The screw steamship Caesar, 90, Capt. T.H. Mason, got up steam on Monday morning, and in the afternoon left Plymouth Sound to join the Channel fleet, which, it is said, will cruise as far west as Ushant.
The scrow steamships Aboukir, 91, the Topaz, 51, and the Melpomene, 51, left Portland harbour on Sunday, to join the Channel fleet, which was cruising a few miles from the harbour. The Edgar, 91, the Impérieuse, 51, and the Blenheim, 60, remain in port.
|Th 8 September 1859||THE CHANNEL FLEET.- Torbay has been again honoured during the past week with a visit from the Channel fleet. On Wednesday the Melpomene, 51, Capt. Ewart; Diadem, 32, Capt. W. Moorsom, C.B.; and the screw despatch gunboat Flying Fish, 6, Commander Hope, arrived in the bay from the westward. On inquiry it was learnt that a day or two before the fleet encountered a very heavy westerly gale in the chops of the Channel, in which the Diadem sprang her mainyard, and that with the vessels above-named she was detached from the squadron and ordered to rendezvous at Torbay. Early on Friday morning they were rejoined by the remainder of the fleet. The vessels were discerned in the offing standing in for the bay in splendid order. They consisted of the Royal Albert, 121, Capt. E.B. Rice, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B.; the James Watt, 91, Capt. E. Codd; the Algiers, 91, Capt. G.W.D. O'Callaghan; the Caesar, 90, Capt. T.H. Mason; the Agamemnon, 91, Capt. T. Hope; the Aboukir, 91, Capt. F. Schomberg; the Nile, 91, Capt. A.P.E. Wilmot; the Hero, 91, Capt. G.W. Seymour, C.B.; the Emerald, 51, Capt. A. Cumming; the Topaz, 51, Capt. the Hon. W.S. Spencer; and the Imperieuse, 50, Capt. John J.B.E. Frere. At noon the whole of the ships had come to an anchor about midbay. It was a noble sight to the spectator ashore to witness these magnificent specimens of naval architecture taking up their respective positions. Thousands of persons were, as on the last occasion, attracted to the quays, and the bay has been every day studded with boats and steamers conveying excursionists around the vessels. By the kindness of the commanders the ships were again, subject to necessary regulations, thrown open to the public, and during the whole of the specified hours an immense number of visitors have availed themselves of the privilege. The Diadem and the Flying Fish got under way on Saturday morning and proceeded to Plymouth, but the rest still remain at anchor.|
|Ma 12 September 1859||The Channel fleet was off Plymouth on Saturday afternoon. At half-past 3 o'clock they were under steam only 3½ miles south of the Mewstone coming from the eastward, and led by the Royal Albert; they then edged in towards the Breakwater, under jibs and spankers only; wind, N. by W. The ships afterwards paid off towards the south, and at 5 o'clock were four or five miles east of the Eddystone, under steam only, apparently going down Channel. The fleet consisted of the flagship, the Royal Albert, 121, Rear. Admiral Sir Charles Freemantle; the Algiers, 91, Capt. George W.D. O'Callaghan; the James Watt, 91, Capt. Edward Codd; Caesar, 90, Capt. Thomas H. Mason; Hero, 91, Capt George H. Seymour; Mersey, 40, Capt. Henry Caldwell, C.B.; Nile, 90, Capt. Arthur P.E. Wilmot, C.B.; Aboukir, 90, Capt. Charles F. Schomberg; Agamemnon, 91, Capt. Thomas Hope; Topaze, 51, Capt. Hon. W.S. Spencer; Emerald, 51, Capt. Arthur Cumming; Flying Fish, 6, Commander Charles W. Hope; and Melpomene, 50, Capt. Charles J.F. Ewart.|
|Sa 17 September 1859||The Channel fleet entered Plymouth Sound yesterday (Friday). It consists of the flagship Royal Albert, 121, Rear-Admiral Sir C. Fremantle; the Hero, 91, Captain Sir G.J. Brooke; the Algiers, 91, Captain O'Callaghan; the Agamemnon, 91, Capt. Wilson [this would seem to be an error, Thomas Hope was captain at this time]; the Caesar, 90, Capt. Mason; the Emerald, 50, Capt. Cumming; the James Watt, 91, Capt. E. Codd; the Aboukir, 90, Capt. Schomberg; and the Topazee, 50, Capt. Spencer. The ships hove in sight about 9 a.m.; the Admiral entered at 11; the last ship at 2 p.m.; the flagship parted her bower cable in the Sound; the Melpomene and the Mersey parted company from the rest of the fleet at sea.|
|Ma 3 October 1859||None of the ships belonging to the Channel fleet have left Plymouth during the last week, and there is no present prospect of a combined movement by Admiral Fremantle, who is Commander-in-Chief of the port daring the temporary absence of Vice-Admiral Sir Barrington Reynolds, K.C.B. In the meantime indications which would pass unnoticed under other circumstances, are now observed with interest both on board and on shore; the officers know, if possible, less than the townsmen. The flag ship, Royal Albert, 121, Capt. B. Rice, went from the Sound on Wednesday into Hamoaze, and, with all her armament on board, was placed in dock at Devonport. The copper was stripped off near the aperture of her shaft, and that part of the ship was caulked and recoppered; her bends were also caulked. She was undocked on Saturday. The corners of her fans will probably be reduced. Her crew of 1,000 men are considered good. Some of them are absent on leave until the 7th inst. Strong gales from the southward, accompanied by heavy rains, have recently prevailed, and have compelled the fleet in the Sound to strike top-gallant-masts and make all snug. The state of the weather has most likely prevented the departure of the screw steamship Caesar, 90, Capt. Thomas H. Mason; for some days the davits have been ready to get up her anchors, and she has been otherwise prepared. The blue Peter was flying on Saturday, and 10 or 12 officers and about 60 men, for various ships in the Mediterranean, have embarked. The officers of the Caesar are requesting to have their letters addressed in the first instance to Gibraltar. According to present information she will remain two years on the station; she was commissioned in June, 1853. The Caesar sailed yesterday (Sunday) morning, at 10 o'clock, It will be recollected that, some 10 days since, the Lords of the Admiralty issued orders to prepare for foreign service the James Watt, 91, Capt. Edward Codd, and the Agamemnon, 91, Capt. Thomas Hope. These ships continue ready. The James Watt is bound for the Mediterranean, and has received stores for the Orion and other ships there. The destination of the Agamemnon is uncertain; it is not thought now that she will follow the James Watt; some of her officers have just received leave of absence for a week. The Nile, 90, Capt. A.B. Wilmot, C.B, has a good crew of 850 men, many of whom are from Liverpool; about five months since she supplied 80 to the Doris, and shortly after, 90 to the Algiers. It is expected that the Nile will return to Queenstown, where her crew will probably be reduced to 350. The screw steam frigate Emerald, 50, Capt. Arthur Cumming has a crew of 550, which is less than her complement; it is supposed that she will winter at Sheerness. The Mersey, 40, Capt. Caldwell, C.B., has a complement of 560, chiefly "young fellows," who hope to be paid down at Portsmouth, and to pass the winter there. No preparations for sea are making on board the Diadem, 32, Capt. William Moorsom, C.B. The screw steam gun-vessel Flying Fish, 6, Commander Hope, went outside the harbour on Thursday to try her machinery, which has been recently repaired at Keyham steam yard. The Aboukir, Hero, Melpomene, Topaze, and Virago, complete the Channel fleet. Very few men have volunteerd for the expedition to China.|
|Ma 24 October 1859||By the last accounts received at Malta the Marlborough, 131, bearing the flag of Vice-Admiral Fanshawe, the Commander-in-chief, with Rear Admiral Dacres on board as Captain of the Fleet; the Conqueror, 101; the Orion, 91; the Princess Royal; 91; the Renown, 91, steam-ships of the line; the Vulture, 6, steam frigate; the Scourge, 6, the Coquette, 4, and the Lapwing, 4, steam sloops; the Growler steam gunboat; the African depot ship; the Redpole steam tug were at Gibraltar, as well as the Edgar, 91, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Erskine, and the Neptune, 91, steamships of the line belonging to the Channel fleet. The Caesar, 90, the James Watt, 91, the Agamemnon, 91, steamships of the line, and the Virago, 6, steam sloop, were on their way to Gibraltar and the Mediterranean from England; and on her way to Malta from England and Gibraltar the Supply, 2, steam storeshlp. On her way to Gibraltar and England the Firebrand, 6, steam sloop. The Doris, 32, steam frigate, was at Tetuan, and the Quail steam gunboat at Tangier.|
|Ma 13 October 1862||The St. George, 86, screw, Capt. the Hon. Francis Egerton, went into Portsmouth harbour on Saturday from Spithead for the purpose of being docked, to replace some sheets of copper rubbed off her bottom, and repair damage to her garboard strake, caused by her grounding during her cruise with the Channel fleet in the Baltic. A doubt existing as to the possibility of placing the ship in dock to-day owing to her draught of water, 27 feet, and the tides now taking off, it was determined to lighten her by taking out part of her guns. She was lying lashed alongside the Caesar, a sister vessel now lying in ordinary, and it might have been supposed that the unencumbered decks of the latter were just the places to receive them. The guns, however, were deposited in ordnance lighters, which involved not only a great extra expense, but also a corresponding waste of time. The ship will be placed in dock to-day if it is found possible to do so, but this very doubt is another, and one of the strongest arguments which can be used in favour of the immediate construction of docks at Portsmouth having deep water entrances. The Channel fleet have now been lying at Spithead, with the exception of the Trafalgar, ever since its return from the Baltic, and every ship required docking, as all had been on shore during their Baltic cruise. Portsmouth is not behind other yards in dock accommodation; yet only one dock exists there which will receive first-class ships, and the consequences have been that each ship has had to wait its turn, and even now the repairs of the fleet are not yet completed.|
The Trafalgar, 70, screw steamship, 2,900 tons, 500-horse power, has been removed from Sheerness dockyard, where she has undergone thorough repair, to the harbour. She is to have six months' supplies put on board, when she will again join the Channel squadron.