HMS Pandora (1861)
HMS Pandora (1861)

Royal NavyVessels

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NamePandora (1861)Explanation
Launched7 February 1861
Builders measure428 tons
Displacement570 tons
Ships bookADM 135/346
Snippets concerning this vessels career
18 December 1861
- 18 January 1862
Liverpool, as tender to Majestic, during the war scare occasioned by the Trent affair during the American civil war
20 March 1863
- 16 December 1865
Commanded (from commissioning at Portsmouth) by Commander William FitzHerbert Ruxton, west coast of Africa
18 December 1865
- 21 February 1867
Commanded (until paying off at Portsmouth) by Commander Ernest Augustus Travers Stubbs, west coast of Africa
14 March 1868
- 20 August 1868
Commanded by Commander William Spratt, west coast of Africa
20 August 1868
- 26 July 1872
Commanded (until paying off) by Commander John Burgess, west coast of Africa, then (June 1870) the Mediterranean
Extracts from the Times newspaper
Tu 26 February 1861The Lucifer paddle steam tender arrived at Portsmouth, yesterday from Pembroke, having in tow the Pandora, 5, three-masted screw schooner, recently launched from that yard, and in charge of Commander R.L. Stokes, Master-attendant of Portsmouth dockyard. On clearing Milford Haven the Pandora cast adrift her warps from the Lucifer, and made her way under canvas as far as the Start, displaying good sailing qualities. Off the Start, the wind drawing ahead, the Lucifer took her again in tow, and continued with her so the remainder of the voyage round. In the Bristol Channel numbers of vessels were seen which had all suffered more or less severely from the effects of the late gale. Off the Lizard, and to the north-west, a very heavy sea was running. The Pandora will be docked and, after coppering, placed in the steam basin to receive her outfit by the steam reserve.
We 20 March 1861The Pandora, 5, screw, has been placed in dock at Portsmouth for coppering and fitting valves, &c. This vessel has been recently launched from Pembroke dockyard, and is of the Torch and Philomel class.
Fr 29 March 1861The Pandora, 5, screw, receiving her copper and fitting-valves in dock at Portsmouth, is being fitted with machinery of horse power (nominal), by Messrs. Summers and Day, of Northam. She has nearly the whole of her copper on.
We 3 April 1861The Pandora, 5, screw, was undocked from No. 8 dock at Portsmouth yesterday, after coppering, and placed in the steam basin to receive her machinery.
Fr 5 April 1861In the steam basin of Portsmouth dockyard the Pandora, 5, screw, has shipped her cylinders and condensers, with the greater portion of her machinery, and is expected: to receive her boilers to-day. The Chanticleer, 17, screw, is also in the hands of the contractors, fitting her machinery. Both these are new vessels. The Elfin Royal paddle yacht has received her new boilers.
Sa 24 August 1861The Shannon, 51, screw, in the first-class reserve at Portsmouth, officially tested her machinery yesterday outside the harbour, under the superintendence of Capt. H. Broadhead, commanding Her Majesty's ship Asia, and the reserve at the port. The Pandora, 5, screw, tried under the suprintendence of the same officer the previous day realized a speed of 8.794 knots, the mean of six runs, at a draught of water of -forward, 9 feet 7 inches; aft, 11 feet 7 inches. On one of her former trials, drawing 11 feet 2 inches aft and 7 feet 10 inches forward, she realized 10.500 knots.
Tu 22 October 1861The Pandora, 5, screw, has concluded her trials at the measured mile in Stokes Bay, the mean speed attained being 9¼ knots.
We 4 December 1861In addition to the ships named in The Times of yesterday as ordered by telegram from the Admiralty to he held ready for immediate commission, at Portsmouth, and which, yesterday were having their sails and other stores put on board, the Pandora, 5, screw three-masted schooner, and the Vigilant, 4, screw despatch vessel, are named for being also held in readiness for the pennant. The excitement in naval circles respecting the American difficulty [i.e.: the war scare occasioned by the Trent affair during the American civil war] increases hourly. Officers of all ranks, and some of them holding high dockyard appointments, are said to have eagerly offered their services to the Admiralty should matters turn out for the worst. Among the many on dits current, it is said to be likely that the Orpheus, 21, screw corvette, will be added to the squadron under the Admiral commanding on the North American and West India station, Commodore Burnett hoisting his pennant on board a heavy frigate for service in the Australian waters. It is also rumoured that the first service of the Orpheus will be to convoy a transport from the Thames to Halifax, loaded with stores and arms for Canada.
Fr 13 December 1861The Euryalus and Shannon frigates, at Portsmouth, have as yet no officers named to commission them. Both, vessels, however, are complete in every respect, and can proceed to sea within 12 hours, if necessary. The Vigilant and Pandora screw sloops are held in equal readiness, but, as in the case of the frigates, no one has yet been named to their command. The Chanticleer, 17, screw, is flying the transferred pennant of the Wasp, with her officers .and crew on a week's leave. On their rejoining, she can proceed to sea at a day's notice, if required. The case is very different with the Geyser, 6 paddle, which vessel, on being ordered to the Pacific, has been discovered to have serious defects, and has, in consequence, turned her crew over to one of the hulks in the harbour. She will be taken into the steam basin to-day to undergo the necessary repairs, the extent of which and the time occupied will depend, as a matter of course, upon the extent of defects discovered.
Sa 21 December 1861The Sutlej, 51, screw, the Pandora, 6, screw, and the Volcano, 6, paddle (floating factory), at Portsmouth, are ordered to complete their armament for immediate commission. The Sutlej will take on board one 100-pounder Armstrong, and six 40-pounders as part of her armament.
We 25 December 1861The Pandora, 6, screw, in the first-class reserve at Portsmouth, has been brought down the harbour and berthed alongside the dockyard, to complete her armament, sails, &c., for sea. She is ordered to proceed round to Liverpool and will be stationed in the Mersey for the protection of the port.
Fr 27 December 1861The Pandora, 5, screw, fitting at Portsmouth, for service in the Mersey, yesterday bent sails, took on board her mooring anchors, chains, and buoy (which will he laid down for her use in the Mersey), spare sails, warps, tarpaulins, and other service stores. She also received her two 25-pounder Armstrong guns, with their equipment. A party of 40 men are expected to arrive at Portsmouth to-day from Her Majesty's ship Majestic for the purpose of navigating the Pandora round to Liverpool. Another party of men are also expected from the Majestic to take five of the second-class reserve gunboats in hand, and fit them out for special service in the Mersey. A like party of men will also proceed to an eastern port to fit out five gunboats for coast service. The gunboats of the first class reserve at Portsmouth, officered and manned from the ships in harbour, and which form the advanced portion of the newly-formed gunboat flotilla, are held in readiness to proceed to their destination - the coasts of Ireland and Scotland, on receipt of sailing orders.
Sa 28 December 1861The Pandora, 5, screw, hoisted her pendant of commission at Portsmouth yesterday by Lieut. Hon. James T. Fitzmaurice, of Her Majesty's ship Majestic, 80, screw, lying in the Mersey, to which vessel the Pandora will be attached as tender, Lieut. Fitzmaurice and a party of seamen having arrived at Portsmouth from Liverpool yesterday morning to navigate the Pandora round to the Mersey. She took in her powder and shell last evening, moved her position from alongside the north wall of the steam-basin to a fairway buoy in the harbour, and will sail for the Mersey this morning.

The gunboats Amelia, Lieut. Cheyne, and Escort, Lieut. Woodman, two of the advanced gunboat flotilla at Portsmouth, received sailing orders yesterday for Liverpool. They will call at Plymouth Sound, whence the Emerald, 51, screw, Capt. A. Cumming, will accompany them. Powder and shell were hurried on board yesterday afternoon. After dark they were taken to Spithead, where it was expected they would anchor for the night, resuming their voyage at daylight this morning. The Mersey was not the originally assigned destination of the Amelia and Escort; but the authorities, in order to provide efficiently for the defence of the port, have set aside previous arrangements.
Th 2 April 1863The Pandora, 4, screw gunvessel, Commander Ruxton, has been swung in Portsmouth harbour, to ascertain the deviation of her compass, and is expected to go out of harbour to Spithead to-day before sailing for her destination.
Ma 6 April 1863The Pandora, 4, screw gun vessel, Commander Ruxton, tested her speed at the measured mile in Stokes Bay on Saturday, but, from attendant circumstances, will probably repeat the trial before sailing for her destination, the West Coast of Africa, The Pandora's armament comprises one 110-pounder, two 20-pounders, and two 12-puanders, all Armstrong breech-loaders.
Th 9 April 1863The Pandora, 4, screw, Commander W. Ruxton, has completed her trials of speed at Portsmouth with full and half boiler-power, realizing a mean speed in knots with the former of 8.528, and with the latter of 5.430. At the full boiler-power trial the temperature ranged:- On deck, from 51 to 58 deg.; in the engine-room, from 65 to 70 deg. and in the stokehole, from 80 to 95 deg. The Pandora awaits sailing orders at Spithead, and is expected to proceed to the West Coast of Africa, calling at Plymouth for mails.
Sa 11 April 1863The Pandora, 4, screw, Commander Ruxton, sailed from Spithead on Thursday evening, taking mails for Sierra Leone.
Tu 13 November 1866The following is published at the Admiralty, Whitehall, respecting the loss of the Griffon:- "The Buzzard arrived at Devonport this (Monday) afternoon, after a lengthened passage from Barbadoes. Intelligence has been received from the West Coast of Africa of the loss of Her Majesty's gun vessel Griffon. It appears that the Griffon and Pandora, when standing into Little Popoe, in the Bight of Benin, on the evening of the 2nd of October, unfortunately came into collision, and that the Griffon ran on to the beach shortly afterwards. The Mullet and Pandora had endeavoured, without success, to get the Griffon off up to the evening of the 6th of October, and it was feared she would become a total wreck. Officers and men are all safe and well."
Th 7 February 1867The Pandora, 5, screw gunvessel, 425 tons, 80-horse power, arrived at Spithead yesterday morning from the West Coast of Africa, on the completion of her term of foreign service. She is expected to go into Portsmouth harbour to be dismantled and paid out of commission.
Fr 8 February 1867The Pandora, 5, screw gun-vessel, whose arrival at Spithead was announced in The Times naval intelligence of yesterday, from the West Coast of Africa, steamed into Portsmouth harbour yesterday afternoon to dismantle and pay out of commission.
Sa 16 February 1867A naval court-martial assembled yesterday morning, under the presidency of Capt. E. Tatham, Her Majesty's ship Bellerophon, on board Her Majesty's ship Victory at Portsmouth, for the trial of prisoners. Mr. John Edwards, master of Her Majesty's ship Pandora, was arraigned on charge of having, on the 2d of October, 1866, allowed the Pandora to stand too close into the shore off Settle Popo, on the West Coast of Africa. Mr. Edwards was fully and honourably acquitted.
Fr 22 February 1867The screw gun vessel Pandora, Commander Moger [should be Stubbs] lately returned from the Coast of Africa, was paid off at Portsmouth yesterday, under the superintendence of Capt. the Hon. F. Egerton, flag captain to Admiral Sir T.S. Pasley. The Pandora was placed in the third division of the steam reserve, after having been four years in commission.
We 25 December 1867The Pandora is an unarmoured, single-screw gun-vessel of 426 tons, 80-horse power, and three guns. She has been completed in a thorough repair to hull and engines, after serving a term of foreign service, and is now completing her outfit and rig for a fresh commission. With her 80-horse power engines she is, of course, anything but a fast vessel under steam.
Ma 20 April 1868The Pandora, 6, screw sloop, 80-horse power, Commander W. Spratt, has made her final trial over the measured mile in Stokes Bay, near Portsmouth, and realized a mean speed of a good nine knots. She sailed from Spithead on Saturday afternoon for the West Coast of Africa.
Tu 21 April 1868The Pandora screw gun vessel, Commander Spratt, returned to Spithead on Sunday evening, in consequence of a severe gale blowing in the Channel.
Th 23 April 1868The Pandora, screw gun-vessel, Commander Spratt, went into Portsmouth harbour from Spithead yesterday to make good some defects.
Tu 19 April 1870Our Malta correspondent writes under date of Valetta, April 11:- ... The whole of the Mediterranean squadron is now here except the Lee, Enterprise, Cruizer and Trinculo, stationed at Gibraltar and the coast of Spain; the Newport and Azof, which are on surveying duties on the coast of Sicily and the Malta Channel; and the Pandora and Lynx, which vessels are expected from the West Coast of Africa.
Sa 2 July 1870Our Malta Correspondent writes, under date of Valetta, June 26:- "Her Majesty's sloop Rapid, 3, Commander the Hon. F.L. Wood, sailed from this port on the morning of the 25th inst. for Barcelona, to take the place recently occupied by the Lee, 5, gun-vessel, Commander C.A. Andrew, on the north-cast coast of Spain. The Lee has gone to Gibraltar to relieve the Enterprise, 4 , ironclad corvette, Commander D. Morant, which latter vessel is now on her way from Malaga to Malta, and may be expected here in a day or two. The Pandora, 3, gun-vessel, Commander J. Burgess, which arrived at Gibraltar on the 13th inst. from the West Coast of Africa, was, by the last accounts, on the point of leaving for Malta. The Lynx, 5, gun-vessel, also ordered from the Coast of Africa to join the Mediterranean squadron, had not arrived..."
Ma 15 July 1872The unarmoured screw gun vessel Pandora, Commander John Burgess, arrived and anchored at Spithead during Saturday afternoon from the Mediterranean. She was commissioned in March, 1868, and will now be paid out of commission, probably into the Portsmouth Steam Reserve.

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