HMS Retribution (1844)
HMS Retribution (1844)

Royal NavyVessels

Browse RN vessels: A; B; C; D; E - F; G - H; I - L; M; N - P; Q - R; S; T - U; V - Z; ??
NameRetribution (1844)Explanation
Type1st class frigate   
Launched2 July 1844
Builders measure1641 tons
Ships book
NoteLaid down as Watt
Snippets concerning this vessels career
14 October 1845
- 16 October 1846
Commanded (from commissioning at Chatham until paying off at Portsmouth) by Captain Stephen Lushington, Channel squadron
6 August 1850
- 23 June 1852
Commanded by Captain Frederick Warden, particular service
10 June 1852Commanded by Captain James Robert Drummond, Mediterranean
2 January 1855
- 4 February 1855
Commanded by Captain Edward Tatham
22 January 1855Commanded by Captain Thomas Fisher, flagship of Rear-Admiral Robert Lambert Baynes, the Baltic during the Russian War, then troop transport from the Black Sea
30 August 1856
- 26 January 1859
Commanded by Captain Charles Barker, East Indies and China (including 2nd Anglo-Chinese War), until Barker was invalided
27 April 1859
- 22 December 1860
Commanded (until paying off at Portsmouth) by Commodore Harry Edmond Edgell, East Indies and China
Extracts from the Times newspaper
Fr 16 October 1846Captain Stephen Lushington (1829), of the Retribution steam-frigate, is appointed to command the Vengeance, 84, advance ship at this port for the flag on the Irish station. The officers and crew of the Retribution are to be transferred to the Vengeance, and will be turned over to her (according to present arrangement) on Saturday. The Retribution came into harbour this evening to be dismantled; various reports are in circulation as to what is ultimately to be done with her. One is, that she is to be a steam tender to the Excellent, under the superintendence of Captain Chads, her present steam tender Bee (10-horse power, appropriated for the use of the students of the Excellent, and Royal Naval College, to study and practise steam in,) being too small for the comfortable accommodation of the numerous parties of ladies and gentlemen who so frequently avail themselves of her services in the summer to take a pic-nic to the Isle of Wight or elsewhere.
Sa 17 October 1846That which yesterday we only mentioned as a rumour with regard to the disposal of the Retribution has been since confirmed by official order. She is actually to become a tender to the Excellent, gunnery-ship, and we are informed (and the report emanated from "Excellent" authority) that on her return to England the Terrible will be similarly disposed of!

The accounts from the Terrible war steamer up to the present date are highly favourable to that fine vessel. When starting from the cruising ground her speed was found to be upwards of 10½ knots per hour on the average, although she had only two boilers at work during the whole time, with an ascertained pressure of six pounds weight only on the steam gauge. The quantity of coals consumed in steaming for 24 hours was 33 tons. She had on board 500 tons of coals, with water and provisions for three months, and has been reported as capable of carrying 200 tons more than that quantity, as she is never affected by weight. The Terrible under favourable circumstances averages a speed of 220 miles per day. Captain Ramsay ordered the stern guns of the lower deck to be fired six times with 16lb. of powder, and double shotted each charge, the usual charge of powder being only 10lb. The firing was effected with perfect safety to the vessel. She can fight with four 56-pounders in a line with the keel, aft, in the stern, and with four guns of the same calibre and weight of metal in her bow. On a trial of speed with the Retribution, the Terrible having at the time more than 150 tons of coals on board above the quantity carried by the Retribution, and one deck extra of heavier guns, with double quantities of powder, shot, and shells, that the latter vessel had, the Terrible beat the Retribution on every point, riding perfectly easy and quick over the sea, when her opponent was rolling to a great degree. From the speed of the Terrible, and her comparatively small consumption of coal, she is the most economical vessel, comparatively, in Her Majesty's navy. Her advantages under sail are also of a superior description, as has been proved by her towing a vessel of 370 tons upwards of 191 miles without any aid from her steam-engines. In the Bay of Biscay she behaved nobly, and sailed three weeks without steam. On her return to Cork with the Gladiator, the Terrible, with only half steam up, beat the Gladiator, although the latter vessel used her full power.
Ma 24 December 1860The Retribution, 28, paddle, Commodore Harry E. Edgell, C.B., was paid off on Saturday at Portsmouth in a manner highly creditable both to officers and men. Good conduct medals and gratuities of 15l. Each were given to three of her crew - James Grant, boatswain's mate, 24 years' service; Richard Lee, captain of the forecastle, 24 years' service; and Robert Gould, quartermaster, of 21 years' service. The Retribution's crew were a body of men such as are seldom seen together now in one ship. Many of her A.B.'s left England as "boys." The appearance of the men at the pay-table sustained the character they had hitherto borne in the ship, for, although an extra degree of liberty has been allowed them during the process of clearing out and returning stores, not a single man appeared to be the worse for liquor; all were clean, smart, and respectable. Some of the men received large sums - as much as 100l. And 120l. Each, and 1,600l. Was remitted by the men from the pay-table to their homes. The ship was commissioned on the 24th of August, 1856, by Capt. C. Barker, since which period she has sailed and steamed upwards of 70,000 miles, and gone round the world. She commenced her cruise by taking supernumeraries to Malta. She ultimately sailed from Plymouth on the 16th of March, 1857, touching at Rio de Janeiro, and putting into the Falkland Islands to repair the rudder, which had become damaged in a gale of wind after leaving Rio, passing through the Straits of Magellan, and arriving at Valparaiso on the 3d of July, 1857. During the next nine months she cruised along the coasts of Peru and Chili, protecting British property, and watching the movements of the revolutionary frigate Apurimac. She next received orders to proceed to China. She called at Honolulu, and arrived at Hongkong on the l2th of June, l858. She accompanied Lord Elgin to Jeddo, and transferred the yacht presented by Her Majesty to the Emperor of Japan, calling on the way at Nangasaki and Simeda. The treaty being signed, she returned to Shanghai, and thence proceeded to the Yang-tze-Kiang, having to engage the rebels at Nankin in passing. She conveyed Lord Elgin 450 miles up the river, when, owing to the shallowness of the stream, his Lordship left the Retribution and went on board the Furious, which conveyed him about 230 miles further on, to Hungchow. She returned to Shanghai from this navigation in unknown waters, the greater part of which was marked by the ship's keel on the sands and mud of the river, reaching Hongkong on the 26th of January, 1859, when Capt. Barker was invalided home, and succeeded in the command by Capt. Peter Cracroft, who was also superseded on the 27th of April following by Commodore Harry E. Edgell, C.B., who commanded her until hauling down her pendant on Saturday. During Commodore Edgell's command he has recovered upwards of 5,000l. From the wreck of the Ava, near Trincomalee. Since then the Retribution has accompanied the vessels laying down the submarine telegraph cable from Kurrachee to Aden, via Muscat and the Kooria Moorla Islands. She sailed from Aden on the 29th of February, 1860, and arrived at Bombay on the 20th of March, where the ship was placed in dock and underwent very extensive repairs to enable her to reach England. She sailed from Trincomalee for England on the l5th of September, and arrived at Portsmouth on the 9th of December in a terribly disabled state, and, fortunately for, perhaps, the safety of all on board, fine weather had been experienced the greater part of the passage. During the whole period of her commission she has lost four officers and 23 men by death, and five officers and 76 men have been invalided.

Valid HTML 5.0