|Name||Royal Albert (1854)||Explanation|
|Launched||13 May 1854||Converted to screw||on the stocks|
|Builders measure||3726 tons|
|Fate||1884||Last in commission||1861|
|Ships book||ADM 135/406|
|13 May 1854||Launched at Woolwich Dockyard.|
|19 June 1854|
- October 1854
|Commanded (from commissioning at Sheerness) by Commander Alexander Little, Sheerness|
- 27 November 1854
|Commanded by Captain Thomas Sabine Pasley, Sheerness|
|14 February 1855|
- April 1857
|Commanded by Captain William Robert Mends, flagship of Rear-Admiral Edmund Lyons, Mediterranean (and in the Black Sea during the Russian War)|
- 20 August 1858
|Commanded by Captain Francis Egerton, Mediterranean|
|25 August 1858|
- October 1859
|Commanded by Captain Edward Bridges Rice, flagship of Rear-Admiral Charles Howe Fremantle, Channel squadron|
|1 October 1859|
- 25 January 1861
|Commanded (until paying off at Plymouth) by Captain Henry James Lacon, Channel squadron (flagship of Rear-Admiral Charles Howe Fremantle until 10 October 1860, then of Rear-Admiral Robert Fanshawe Stopford)|
|September 1884||Sold to Castle for breaking up at Charlton.|
|Extracts from the Times newspaper|
|Ma 29 November 1858||The Channel squadron, consisting of the Royal Albert, Renown, Orion, and Brunswick, weighed anchor on Saturday morning, and steamed out of Bantry Bay for Cork; on obtaining an offing the squadron at noon of the same day let off their steam, and raised their propellers, and proceeded under canvass, the Renown leading the weather line, and followed by the Orion, and the Brunswick leading the lee line, followed by the Royal Albert. The wind during the whole time the squadron was at sea was from south to south-east blowing fresh and occasionally increasing to a gale. At daylight of the 24th the squadron had separated owing to a dense November fog. The vessels arrived at Queenstown in the following order, Brunswick and Renown on the afternoon of the 24th and Royal Albert at 1 p.m. on the 25th. The Orion is outside of the harbour.|
|Ma 3 January 1859||The annual return of the names, number of guns, and tonnage of the whole of the vessels in the navy was published on Saturday, from which it appeals that the British navy at the commencement of the present year, consists of 523 vessels, including screw steamers of every description, exclusive of which there are 167 gunboats. Of the number of vessels composing the navy no less than 176 are in commission, and doing duty in every part of the globe. The vessels in commission are distributed as follow:- 32 line-of-battle ships, frigates, and smaller vessels are attached to the East Indies and China station; 25 on the coast of Africa; 16 in the Mediterranean; 15 on the Pacific and on the Australia station; 15 on the North America and West India station; 7 on the south-east coast of America, and 5 at the Cape of Good Hope. The remaining 61 vessels, are employed on particular service, or attached as guardships to the principal ports in Great Britain and Ireland, including the Channel squadron, which is composed of the following screw steamers:- The Royal Albert, 121, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Sir C.H. Fremantle, K.C.B.; the Orion, 91, Captain E.C.T. D'Eyncourt; the Renown,. 91, Captain, A. Forbes; the Victor Emmanuel, 91, Captain J. Willcox; the Brunswick, 80, Captain E. Ommanney; and the Racoon, 22, Captain J.A. Paynter.|
|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 19 May 1859||Her Majesty's screw line-of-battle ships Renown, 91 guns, Captain Arthur Forbes; the St. Jean d'Acre, 101, Captain Thomas P. Thompson; the Brunswick, 80, Capt. Erasmus Ommanney, and the screw corvette Racoon, 22, Captain James A. Paynter, arrived at Gibraltar on the 3d inst. from the coast of England on their way to the Mediterranean. These ships of war lately formed put of the Channel fleet, and were escorted to the Bay by the Royal Albert, 120, Rear-Admiral Sir Charles H. Fremantle. The Renown, the St. Jean d'Acre, the Brunswick, and the Racoon, having taken in some fresh supplies, left the Bay between 3 and 4 o'clock on the afternoon of the 4th, under steam for the eastward. The Victor Emmanuel, 91 guns, Captain Willcox, C.B., which has been lying at Gibraltar for some time past, proceeded eastward at 9 a.m. on the 4th. Admiral Fremantle returned to England in the Royal Albert, which left on the afternoon of the 6th.|
|Ma 6 June 1859||The crew of the screw steamship Royal Albert, 121, flag of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, Commander-in-Chief of the Channel fleet, Capt. Edward B. Rice, in Plymouth Sound, were paid wages on Wednesday, and obtained leave of absence for four days.|
|Sa 18 June 1859||The new line-of-battle ship Royal Albert, 121, Captain Rice, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, Commander-in-Chief of the Channel fleet, arrived at Portland harbour on Thursday afternoon at half-??? [unreadable] from Plymouth. On arriving off King's Pier, the Hero, Captain G. H. Seymour, C.B., saluted the gallant ??? with the usual number of guns, which was duly replied to. The Royal Albert came in under steam, and took an excellent position inside the other ships of war at anchor in that magnificent harbour. The fleet now comprises the following ships:- Royal Albert, 121; Hero, ???; James Watt, 91; Algiers, 91; Mersey, 40; Emerald, Blenheim, 60; and the gunboats Flying Fish, 6, and ???.|
|Fr 1 July 1859||The screw line-of-battle ship Agamemnon, 91, Capt. Thomas Hope, arrlved at Portland on Tuesday afternoon from Spithead. Her Majesty's vessels now at anchor in that harbour are the Royal Albert, 121; Hero, 91; James Watt, 91; Agamemnon, 91; Algiers, 91; Emerald, 51; Mersey, 40; Curacoa, 31; Blenheim, 60; Pioneer, 6; Flying Fish, 6; and the Biter, 2.|
|Fr 8 July 1859||The screw line-of-battle ships Royal Albert, 121, Capt. E.B. Rice, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle; the James Watt, 91, Capt. E. Codd; the Hero, 91, Capt. G.H. Seymour, C.B.; the Algiers, 91, Capt. G.W.D. O'Callaghan; the Mersey, 40, Capt. H. Caldwell, C.B.; and the screw despatch gunboat Flying Fish, 6, Commander Hope, left Portland harbour on Wednesday morning for a cruise in the Channel. The Agamemnon, 91, Capt. T. Hope; the Emerald, 31, Capt. Arthur Cumming; the Blenheim, 60, Capt. Scott; and the Pioneer, 6, Commander May, are still at anchor.|
|Ma 18 July 1859||The screw line-of-battle ships Royal Albert, 121, bearing the flag of Sir Charles Fremantle; James Watt, 91; Algiers, 91; Hero, 91; the screw-frigate Mersey, 40; and the despatch gunboat Flying Fish, 6, arrived at Portland under steam on Friday morning after a few days cruise in the Channel. The other ships at anchor at Portland are the Agamemnon, 91; Aboukir, 91; Emerald, 51; Blenheim, 60 ; and the gun-boats Pioneer, 6, and Biter, 2.|
|Tu 26 July 1859||His Royal Highness the Prince Consort, accompanied by Prince Alfred and Prince Arthur, arrived in the Royal yacht Victoria and Albert at noon yesterday on a visit of inspection to the extensive defensive and other important works in connexion with the new harbour at Portland. A portion of the Channel fleet, consisting of the Royal Albert, Agamemnon, James Watt, Algiers, and Emerald, which had shortly before left the harbour for Spithead, saluted the Royal party on passing. On the yacht rounding the extremity of the outer breakwater the ships at anchor - Aboukir, Blenheim, Topaze, Melpomene - also saluted. Their Royal Highnesses, on landing, were received by Mr. Coode, engineer-in-chief, and Mr. Leather, contractor for the breakwater, who conducted them over the works now in progress. After the inspection the Royal party returned on board the Victoria and Albert, which immediately left the harbour for Osborne.|
|Ma 22 August 1859||Eight out of the 11 vessels forming that portion of the Channel fleet at Spithead left that anchorage under steam on Saturday. Early in the morning indications were given of their approaching departure; royal yards were crossed, funnels raised, and fires lit. At noon Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Howe Fremantle, K.C.B., embarked on board his barge from the sallyport stairs, and proceeded on board the Royal Albert, which, with the remainder of the squadron, had steam up, and was hove short. It was 3 p.m. before the fleet was fairly under way, the Royal Albert leading as far as the Nab Light, when the Flying Fish, 6, screw, Commander C. W. Hope, was sent ahead of the Royal Albert, and took up her position as look-out vessel to the squadron. Scarcely a ripple was on the water, and a more magnificent sight could not be imagined than the ships presented as they steamed round the east end of the Wight in the order named:- The Flying Fish, screw, 6, Commander C. W. Hope; the Royal Albert, 131, screw, Captain E. B. Rice, bearing the flag (red at the mizen) of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Howe Fremantle, K.C.B.; the Algiers, 91, screw, Captain G.W.D. O'Callaghan; the James Watt, 91, screw, Captain E. Codd; the Agamemnon, 91, screw, Captain T. Hope; the Hero, 91, screw, Captain G.H. Seymour; the Diadem, 32, screw, Capt. W. Moorsom, C.B.; and the Emerald, 51, screw, Capt. A. Cumming. The Mersey was detained at Spithead on her experimental screw trials, her third attempt at the measured mile on Saturday again proving a failure, owing to the continued priming of her boilers. The ships at present at Spithead comprise the Trafalgar, 91, screw, Capt. E.G. Fanshawe; the Mersey, 40, screw, Capt. H. Caldwell, C.B.; and the Scout, 21, screw, Capt. John Corbett, the above three vessels belonging to the Channel fleet; the Sidon, 22, paddle, Capt. R.B. Crawford, and the Pioneer, 6, screw, Commander Hugh Reilley, both ordered on foreign service, and the Gorgon, 6, paddle, Commander Bedford C. Pim|
|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.|
|Th 27 October 1859||The Channel fleet was off Plymouth on Tuesday evening. The Emerald and Mersey parted company from them, and entered the Sound to receive provisions for conveyance to Torbay, where the ships will assemble, and be joined by the Royal Albert and Diadem, from Plymouth.|
|We 2 November 1859||The screw line-of-battle ship Royal Albert, 121, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, the screw steam frigates Mersey, 40, and the Emerald, 51, arrived at Portland on Sunday from Plymouth. The Mars, 80, and the Blenheim, 60, arrived from the westward on Monday.|
|Sa 12 November 1859||The Algiers, 91, screw, Capt. George D. O'Callaghan, arrived at Spithead from Portland yesterday.|
The ships remaining in Portland Harbour are:- the Royal Albert, 131; the Hero, 91; the Aboukir, 91; the Mars, 81; the Blenheim, 61; the Mersey, 40; the Emerald, 51; and the Melpomene, 51.
The screw steamshlp Trafalgar, 91, from Portland, arrived in Plymouth Sound yesterday morning.
|We 7 December 1859||The screw line-of-battle ship Algiers, 91, rejoined the Channel Fleet at Portland on Sunday. The vessels now at anchor there are the Royal Albert, 131 (flag ship); Hero, 91; Aboukir, 91; Algiers, 91; Trafalgar, 91; Mars, 80; Mersey, 40; Diadem, 32; Blenheim, 60; Donegal, 101; Partridge, 6; and the Biter, 2.|
|Th 19 January 1860||The screw line-of-battle ships in Portland harbour are the Edgar, 91, flagship of Rear-Admiral Erskine, second in command of the Channel fleet; Donegal, 101; Hero, 91; Algiers, 91; Trafalgar, 91; Aboukir, 91; and the Mars, 80. The screw frigate Diadem, 32; the screw corvette Mutine, 18; and the gunboats Flying Fish, 6; and the Partridge, 2. The paddlewheel steam frigate Prometheus, 6, and the Coastguard ship Blenheim are also at anchor. The Royal Albert, 121, is daily expected from Plymouth.|
|Th 23 February 1860||The screw steam frigate Diadem, 32, Capt. James H. Cockburn, arrived at Portland on Tuesday from Portsmouth. A portion of the Channel fleet is expected to leave that harbour in a few days for the Tagus. The vessels now in port are the Royal Albert, 121; Edgar, 91; Queen, 91; Algiers, 91: Donegal, 101; Hero, 91; Trafalgar, 91; Melpomene, 51; Mersey, 40; Diadem, 32; Blenheim, 60; Mutine, 17; Greyhound, 17; Biter, 2; and the Partridge, 2.|
|Fr 24 February 1860||We learn by electric telegraph that the Channel fleet, consisting of the Royal Albert, Edgar, Donegal, Algiers, Trafalgar, Queen, Mersey, Melpomene, and Diadem, left Portland at noon yesterday, under sail, for Lisbon.|
|Fr 2 March 1860||A letter dated Torbay, Tuesday, received at Plymouth, from one of the officers of the Channel squadron, says that off the Lizard the ships were taken all aback, and could not again form a line. The Edgar, Queen, and Donegal remained out. Besides the casualties to the Queen, Diadem, Algiers, and Mersey, already reported in The Times, the letter states that the Aboukir lost her cross-jack yard and starboard quarter-boats, the Royal Albert pitched her jib-boom under at times, and the Trafalgar lost her jib-boom; she will probably call at Plymouth before proceeding to the Tagus.|
|We 4 April 1860||A portion of the Channel Fleet, consisting of the screw steamships Royal Albert, 121, Capt. Henry J. Lacon, bearing the flag of Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B.; the Donegal, 101, Capt. Henry Broadhead; the Aboukir, 90, Capt. Charles F. Schomberg; and the screw steam-frigate Melpomene, 51, Capt. Charles J.F. Ewart, hove in sight at Plymouth about 6 o'clock yesterday (Tuesday) morning, with the wind from the westward, a smart breeze. They came in from sea under their three topsails, and on reaching the west end of the breakwater took in all canvas, and proceeded under steam to the anchorage ground, the flagship taking her position well to the westward. At 8 o'clock the flag of Port Admiral Sir Barrington Reynolds, K.C.B., was honoured by a salute, which was acknowledged by the Impregnable, 104, Capt. Stewart, in Hamoaze. This portion of the Channel fleet left Lisbon on Friday, March the 23d, in company with the screw steamships Edgar, 91, Capt. James E. Katon; Algiers, 91, Capt. George W.D. O'Callaghan; Queen, 86, Capt. Charles F. Hillyar; Mars, 80, Capt. James N. Strange; and the screw steam-frigate Mersey, 40, Capt. Henry Caldwell, C.B. The Edgar carried away her main topsailyard on Sunday morning, when crossing the Bay of Biscay. The Edgar and Mersey have lost a man each overboard. On Monday night, off the Lizard, the Edgar, Algiers, Queen, Mars, and Mersey parted company, and proceeded up Channel for Portsmouth. Very fine weather was experienced at first, but within the last four days strong gales from west-north-west have prevailed, with extraordinary heavy seas. All the ships are reported leaky; the Royal Albert will require a thorough caulking. Two Dutch ships of war were in the Tagus.|
|Ma 9 April 1860||REPAIRS IN THE NAVY.- It was stated by the Surveyor of the Navy, in a report of the committee appointed by the Treasury to inquire into the Navy Estimates, that at the end of 15 years, on an average, the hull of each ship in the navy requires a complete and extensive repair. And further, that the duration of a ship of war cannot be estimated at more than 30 years. The Surveyor took for his guidance the average of the 10 years from 1849 to 1859, when 35 ships of the line and 46 frigates were removed from the effective list of the navy. We much fear that none of our "converted" ships, nor indeed any of our finest specimens of naval architecture, will stand the wear and tear for the periods assigned to them by the Naval Surveyor; and it is supposed, when he made the above statements, he alluded to the duration of sailing ships only, for we have had a few warnings lately as to the future fate of our Victorias, Howes, Duncans, and Diadems, by the introduction of steam into ships of war. We have found that, instead of requiring a complete repair once in 15 years only, that as many months are sometimes sufficient to send a ship into dock. The rapid manner in which the navy has been reconstructed in some degree accounts for this premature decay, in consequence of the unseasoned timber which has been so extensively used, and which from the limited supply in hand could not well have been avoided; but, in addition to the use of indifferent materiel, we must reckon upon our steam ships of war becoming rotten sooner than our sailing ships did, in consequence of the heat produced by the volcanic fires we put into them. Shipwrights know to a plank where to "prick" for rotten wood in a steamship. With unerring precision they try her just in the "wake of the boilers," where the alternations of heat and cold are the greatest, and which are sufficient to destroy the best seasoned timber. It is in these places that steamships require repairs oftenest. There is, however, another destructive power that disables a steamship of war in a very marked manner, and that is the "shake of the screw." Long-continued screw propulsion at full speed soon tells a tale. We have had indications in the Princess Royal, 91, now under repair at Portsmouth, of the destructive effects of the vibratory motion of the screw. She has been almost rebuilt abaft, after having passed through one commission only. It is said, also, in conformation of this, that the whole of the Channel fleet is leaky, and that the Royal Albert, the flag ship, will require a thorough caulking. When we remember how recently this ship was built and commissioned these reports are by no means satisfactory. Judging, therefore from the experience to be derived from the few years the "screw" has been in the navy, we must expect to find defects, in the "deal-wood" of all our ships, which is subject to the cross-stain it receives in passing through a body of water in a state of perturbation. Of course other naval Powers will have the same destructive elements to contend with as ourselves. Indeed, we happen to know that the vibration in some French line-of-battle ships greatly exceeds that of our best ships. The Emperor, however, aims as speed; he knows its importance as well as we do. But to obtain this very desirable quality in screw ships of war, he must be prepared to do as we do, and that is to anticipate a very serious increase in his navy estimates under the head of "repairs" - Army and Navy Gazette.|
|Th 19 April 1860||The screw steamship Royal Albert, 121, Capt. Henry J. Lacon, was removed on Tuesday afternoon from Hamoaze into the lock at Keyham Steamyard, Plymouth. The wind was blowing very strongly from the eastward, and an ordinary observer might have doubted the prudence of making the attempt in such weather. Commander George Biddlecombe, additional assistant-master attendant, took charge afloat, and, having a paddlewheel steaming on either side, advanced cautiously against the wind towards Keyham shortly after 2 o'clock. On nearing, a powerful warp was, under the instructions of Commander James Brown, master attendant, connected with the ship and a capstan on the south side of the lock, and a smart gang of blue-jackets and marines, having fitted the capstan bars, soon got a strain on her. Other warps were attached from the port bow to capstans on the north side, and, guiding ropes being also fixed to both her quarters, she became, when the tugs cast off, completely under control ashore, and the huge mass, hand led almost like a toy, was without the slightest grating or collision quietly lodged in the lock, in charge of the assistant-master shipwright, Mr. Henry Peake, who, with his foreman, Mr. Rowe, was in attendance to receive her. After being relieved of some 300 tons of coal, she will be placed in dock for repair, and will be fitted with four new boilers. Nearly a month will elapse before she can leave the yard. The flag of Rear-Admiral of the Blue George Elliot, Capt. of the Channel fleet and second in command, continues flying at the mizen of the Royal Albert.|
|Fr 18 May 1860||Admiral Sir C. Fremantle, K.C.B., in command of the Channel squadron, struck his flag on board the screw steamship Royal Albert, 121, at Plymouth, on Wednesday at sunset. It is reported that the gallant officer is gone to the Admiralty on special business.|
|Th 31 May 1860||The screw steamship Royal Albert, 121, Capt. H. Lacon, bearing the flag of Rear-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B., got up steam on Tuesday in Plymouth Sound, and sailed for the Downs to take the lead of the Channel fleet, which, it is reported, will visit the coasts of Ireland and Scotland.|
|Ma 25 June 1860||The Channel squadron, after an anchorage of 15 days in St. Margaret's Hope, Firth of Forth, left its moorings on Saturday afternoon, and under canvass, with auxiliary steam power, proceeded down the Firth and stood out to sea. The squadron, in passing the narrow straits at Queensferry, proceeded in single line, the leading ships being the Royal Albert, 121, flagship of Vice-Admiral Sir C. Fremantle, the Mersey, 40-gun frigate, the Edgar, 91, flagship of Rear-Admiral Erskine, and the Donegal, 101, followed by seven other ships of the line and the Diadem frigate. The Greyhound corvette, 17, accompanied the Royal Albert as a tender. On passing Inchkeith, and getting into the outer bay of the Firth, the fleet formed in two lines, and stood out south-west in the direction of St. Abb's Head; the Royal Albert, the Donegal, the Aboukir, the Conqueror, and the Centurion, with the Greyhound forming the south line, and the Edgar, the Trafalgar, the Algiers, the Mars, the Diadem, and the Mersey, the north line. A number of steamers convoyed the fleet down the Firth, The public enthusiasm excited by the visit o£ the Channel squadron in the Forth can scarcely fall to give a stimulus to the service in the south-east of Scotland, where for many years a fleet of war-ships had not been seen; and great disappointment is felt that the fleet has not been able to make the tour of the north of Scotland and Ireland, as was anticipated. It was expected that the squadron would reach Yarmouth-roads yesterday afternoon.|
|Ma 2 July 1860||On Saturday the Channel fleet arrived In Yarmouth Roads. The squadron, which has been engaged in target practice in the North Sea during the past week, consists of the Royal Albert, 120; Conqueror, 101; Donegal, 101; Algiers, 91; Edgar, 91; Aboukir, 91; Trafalgar, 91; Centurion, 80; Mars, 80; Mersey, 40; Diadem, 32; Ariadne, 26; and Flying Fish, 6. The fleet is not expected to remain in Yarmouth Roads more than three or four days, as it is to take part in a naval review before the departure of his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales for Canada.|
|Tu 10 July 1860|
HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS THE PRINCE OF WALES.
PLYMOUTH, MONDAY AFTERNOON.
Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle's Channel squadron, consisting of the flagship Royal Albert, 121, Captain Henry J. Lacon; the Donegal, 101, Captain Henry Broadhead; the Aboukir, 90, Captain Douglas Curry; the Greyhound, 17, Commander Francis W. Sullivan; the Conqueror, 101, Captain Edward S. Sotheby, C.B.; the Trafalgar, 90, Captain Edward G. Fanshawe ; the Centurion, 8 0, Captain Henry G. Rogers, C.B.; the Edgar, 91, Captain James E. Katon; the Algiers, 91, Captain George W.D. O'Callaghan; the Mersey, 40, Captain Henry Caldwell, C.B.; and the Diadem, 32, Captain James H. Cockburn, under canvas only, with a smart breeze a little to the southward of east, hove in sight from Mount Wise at half-past 8 o'clock this morning in two lines. They then formed one line, and stood in for the port. At half-past 10 o'clock the ships wore in succession, and went away to the westward. Shortly after they came in sight more to the southward. Their funnels are up ready for use. The only ship likely to enter the Sound is the Diadem, which is said to be short of fu el. The Earl of Mount-Edgcumbe, in his steam yacht, near the Royal William Victualling-yard, is waiting the approach of the Prince of Wales. The Hero continues inside the Breakwater ready for sea, and arrangements are made for the expected departure of his Royal Highness to-morrow (Tuesday) morning. Her escort, the Ariadne, will probably take the Osborne in tow. The Flying Fish has gone on to Newfoundland.
(BY ELECTRIC AND INTERNATIONAL TELEGRAPH.)
PLYMOUTH, MONDAY EVENING.
Sir Charles Fremantle's squadron, which arrived off the port this morning, formed two lines, ranging about north and south, in the afternoon to receive the Royal yacht, which hove in sight at 7 o'clock, and was saluted by the Impregnable and other ships in Hamoaze. On rounding the west-end of the Breakwater the yardarms of the Hero, St. George, Emerald, and Ariadne, in the Sound, were manned, and the three last-named and the Plymouth Citadel saluted. At half-past 8, when the Prince left the yacht to join the Hero, the Emerald and the Citadel repeated the compliment. The weather is extremely fine, and thousands of the inhabitants were assembled on the heights.
|Tu 11 September 1860|
REVIEW OF THE CHANNEL FLEET.
The fleet, having all got under way by about 8 a.m., stood out to sea from Milford Haven, and, having made an offing of about seven miles, the Osborne, which had previously joined, with the Lords of the Admiralty on board, made the signal for the fleet to form a double line. They accordingly broke into two divisions; the starboard one, consisting of the Royal Albert, 121; the Donegal, 101; the Conqueror, 101; the Mars, 80, and the Trafalgar, 91, was led by Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B., in the Royal Albert. The port division, under Rear-Admiral Erskine, in the Edgar, 91, which was leading, comprised also the Algiers, 91; the Aboukir, 91; the Centurion, 80; the Mersey, 40; and the Diadem, 32. This manoeuvre having been executed with great precision, the Osborne signalled for the fleet to make sail under easy canvass, followed by an order from the Admiral to bank up the fires. Having stood on thus for some time, the two divisions tacked in succession to the starboard, after which the order was given to form a single line of battle. This was effected by the starboard division standing on its course, and the port one tacking until they came into line, when they followed in the wake of their predecessors, an interval of two cables' length separating each ship. The concluding and most exciting manoeuvre of the day was then made by the whole getting orders to make all sail that could be done with safety, and running before the wind. Studdingsail booms were then run out, and every inch of canvass both alow and aloft that would draw was set. The order was then given to make for the nearest port, on which the fleet bore up for Milford Haven. The Osborne then steamed up to the Admiral's ship, and Rear-Admiral Pelham, C.B., hailed Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B., and expressed, on the part of his Grace the Duke of Somerset and the rest of the Lords, the extreme satisfaction they all felt, not only in the appearance of the fleet, but also in the admirable precision with which all the manoeuvres had that day been performed, and we believe Capt. Ramsay, C.B., the superintendent of Pembroke Dockyard, was commissioned to convey the above opinion in writing to the Admiral of the fleet. The Osborne then parted company, - the Royal Albert giving the Lords of the Admiralty a salute of 19 guns, which the Osborne acknowledged by dipping her ensign, after which she stood to the southward, it being their Lordships' intention to inspect some important works in progress at the Scilly Isles, and afterwards proceed to Devonport to inspect the dockyard at that place. Nothing could be more favourable than the weather; it was slightly hazy up to 8 o'clock a.m., when it cleared up, and a fine fresh breeze came from the north-east, which lasted up to 3 o'clock p.m., when it died away. The whole of the signalling was done by bunting, and not by Ward's new system, as was generally supposed that it would be, and the brilliant flags had a very pretty effect as rapidly repeated by every third ship. As the fleet entered the harbour the Admiral made the signal for all the ships to take up their old berths, and by 6 o'clock p.m., all were in their original positions.
The Lords of the Admiralty previous to leaving Pembroke-dock granted the employés the usual half-holyday for Saturday.
|Th 13 September 1860||The following is a list of ships in commission at Plymouth: - In the Sound, the screw steamship St George, 90, Capt. the Hon. Francis Egerton; the Sans Pareil, 70, Capt Arthur P.R. Wilmot; and the screw steam gunvessel Espoir, 5, Commander Sholto Douglas. In Hamoase, the flagship Impregnable, 104, Capt. Lord F. Kerr; the training ship Royal Adelaide, 104, Capt. K. Ball; the guardship in ordinary Wellington, 72, Capt. Astley C. Key; the Boscawen, 70, Capt. Richard A. Powell; the Implacable, 24, Commander J. W. Dorville; the gunnery training ship Cambridge, Capt. Jerningham;, the brig Nautilus, 6, Lieut. W.B. Grave; the paddlewheel steam tender Avon, 3; and the gunboat Porpoise, tender to the Royal Albert, and the Redwing, tender to the Cambridge.|
|Th 13 September 1860||Pursuant to orders received on Sunday last, the Channel fleet, consisting of the Royal Albert, 121, Capt. H.J. Lacon, flagship of Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B., commanding the Fleet; the Conqueror, 101, Capt. Edward S. Sotheby, C.B.; the Donegal, 101, Capt. Henry Broadhead; the Edgar, 91, Capt. James E. Katon, flagship of Rear-Admiral John E. Erskine; the Mars, 80, Capt. James F. Strange; the Trafalgar, 91, Capt. Edward G. Fanshawe; the Algiers, 91, Capt. George W.D, O'Callaghan; the Centurion, 80, Capt. Henry D. Rogers, C.B.; the Aboukir, 91, Capt. Douglas Curry; the Mersey, 40, Capt. Henry Caldwell, C.B.; and the Diadem, 32, Capt. James H. Cockburn, got steam up by daybreak on Tuesday last, and sailed from Milford Haven at about 10 o'clock a.m. They are bound for a cruise of three weeks or a month, and it is supposed will go round the Western Islands, after which they are to rendezvous at Torbay, previous to going into winter quarters. Mr Ward is on board the Admiral's ship with his new system of ocean telegraphs, which are to be thoroughly tried during the cruise. The fleet has been in Milford Haven for more than three weeks, and the conduct of the men has been most exemplary. The civil authorities have not had to interfere except in one or two exceptional cases of drunkenness, together with a few cases of the not very heinous crime of overstaying leave. Rumour has it that three or four vessels of the fleet are to winter at Milford. A more secure berth could not be found in any case.|
|Fr 5 October 1860||It is expected that the screw steamship Aboukir, 90, Captain Douglas Curry, which arrived in Plymouth Sound on Wednesday with the Royal Albert, the Conqueror, and the Centurion, will have to go up Hamoaze to be repaired. During the recent cruise the fleet has been engaged in the usual routine of naval evolutions, and the discipline of the ships has been fully tested. Under canvas only the Edgar is said to be the best. The Conqueror has been repeatedly complimented by Admiral Freemantle for her smart appearance and efficiency. Complaint is made that the Commercial Code of signals which has been recently introduced, and is of great value, appears to receive no proper attention from the merchant vessels met by the ships of
the fleet. During the cruise Ward's night signals have been tested, and have proved very valuable. Admiral Bethune's signals were also tried; they are useful only at short distances.|
The officers of the Steam Reserve Department of Woolwich Dockyard yesterday went down to Greenhithe for the purpose of accompanying Her Majesty's screw steam gunvessel Landrail, 5, Commander Wilson [should probably be Martin], down the measured mile, on a trial of her new engines, supplied by Mr. Humphreys, of Deptford. The trial having been perfectly satisfactory, the Landrail proceeded on her way to Portsmouth to join the Channel Squadron, and will ultimately proceed to the West Indies.
|Th 11 October 1860||Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B., Commander-in-Chief of the Channel Fleet, who left the Royal Albert, 121, Capt. H. Lacon, a few days since at Portland, to have an interview with the Lords of the Admiralty in London, rejoined his ship in Plymouth Sound on Tuesday. While on shore Sir Charles has been promoted from Rear Admiral to Vice Admiral, and his new flag, blue at the fore hoisted on Tuesday, was duly honoured by a salute of 15 guns, which was responded to by the flagship Impregnable, 104, Capt. the Hon. F. Kerr, in Hamoaze. It is understood at Plymouth, that Sir Charles will shortly strike his flag again. The Royal Albert is completing with fuel; her capstan has been sent to the Devonport Dockyard to be repaired. A portion of the Channel Fleet will, it is expected, be despatched to meet the Prince of Wales on his return from the United States. His Royal Highness will not, as first intended visit the Island of Bermuda, but will sail for England direct from New York. The 17th of November has been named as the day of departure.|
|Sa 13 October 1860||Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle, K.C.B., struck his flag on Wednesday at sunset on board the screw steamship Royal Albert, 121, Capt. Henry Lacon, in Plymouth Sound, and resigned command of the Channel Fleet. On Thursday morning his successor, Rear-Admiral R.F. Stopford, late Captain of the Fleet, hoisted his flag with the customary salute, on board the Royal Albert, which was answered by the Impregnable, 104, Capt. Lord F. Kerr, in Hamoaze.|
|Sa 20 October 1860||Vice-Admiral of the Blue Sir Charles Howe Fremantle, K.C.B., in command of the Channel squadron, is expected to return with the fleet to Portland to-morrow (Wednesday). The following is a list of the ships, guns, horse-power, and tons' burden, together with the names of the officers and number of men composing the fleet: - Vice-Admiral Sir C.H. Fremantle, K.C.B., Commander; Rear-Admiral J.B. Erskine, Second in Command; Rear-Admiral R.F. Stopford, Captain of the Fleet:-|
Table scrolls to the right►
|Tu 6 November 1860||That portion of the Channel squadron stationed at Plymouth are reefing studding-sail gear, and making other preparations for proceeding to Lisbon. It is reported that the flagship Royal Albert may sail to-day.|
The Centurion, 80, Capt. H.D. Rogers, received her powder on Friday afternoon.
On Monday morning the riggers of the Devonport dock-yard were admitted before the usual hour, for the purpose of unmooring the screw steamship Aboukir, 90, Capt. Douglas Curry, which will then be taken from Hamoaze into the Sound; she received her powder when in the inner harbour. The despatch of these ships to the Tagus was unexpected at Plymouth.
The Emerald, 51, screw, Capt. Arthur Cumming, sailed from Spithead early on Sunday morning for Plymouth Sound and Lisbon.
|We 7 November 1860||Rear-Admiral Robert F. Stopford's port division of the Channel squadron, in Plymouth Sound, received orders on Monday evening to prepare for sailing yesterday (Tuesday) morning for Lisbon; and the ships were supplied by Mr. W.F. Collier, the Portuguese Vice-Consul, with bills of health for that city,- a course not frequently observed. They consist of the flagship Royal Albert, 12l, Capt. Henry D. Lacon, Conqueror, 101, Capt. E.S. Sotheby, C.B.; Donegal, 101, Capt. Henry Broadhead; Aboukir, 90, Capt. Douglas Curry; Centurion, 80, Capt. H.D. Rogers, C.B.; and Emerald, 51, Capt. Arthur Cumming. At an early hour yesterday (Tuesday) morning, they picked up their small bower anchors, and at 11 o'clock fires were lighted under the boilers of the Royal Albert and Aboukir. At 1 p.m. the ships were detained for despatches. At 2 the Conqueror, Centurion, and Donegal left the Sound under canvas, and the Royal Albert and Aboukir under steam. They would soon put out their fires, as the wind continues strong from the eastward. The Emerald hauled down her blue-peter at 11, and will not sail with the rest, but remain at Plymouth for the stragglers, of whom there are about 200 on shore without leave.|
|Fr 21 December 1860||The flagship Royal Albert, 121, Capt. Henry Lacon; the Conqueror, 101, Capt. Edward S. Sotheby, C.B.; the Donegal, 101, Capt. Henry Broadhead; the Aboukir, 90, Capt. Douglas Curry; and the Emerald, 51, Capt. Arthur Cumming, which left Lisbon on the 10th inst., entered Plymouth Sound yesterday. They were under canvas until Monday, when steam was got up, in order to arrive by the time appointed. Fine weather was experienced until Wednesday evening, when a heavy squall carried away the Emerald's mainyard close off in the slings. The Centurion, 80, Capt. Henry B. Rogers, C.B., will remain up the Tagus until the arrival from Gibraltar of the St. Jean d'Acre, 101, Capt. Thomas P. Thomson, which she will supply with provisions, and then join the Channel squadron at Plymouth. The crews are all healthy.|
|Sa 22 December 1860||The mainmast of the flagship Royal Albert, 121, at Plymouth, is said to have sustained damage on the passage out to Lisbon, owing to the mainstay having given way.|
The ships in the Sound, belonging to the Channel squadron, discharged their powder yesterday morning. Admiral Stopford's ship, the Royal Albert, 121, Capt. Henry J Lacon; the Conqueror, 101, Capt. Edward S. Sotheby, C.B., and the Donegal, 101, Capt. Broadhead, went up Hamoaze; the Aboukir and the Emerald are likely to follow.
|Ma 24 December 1860||The screw steamship Aboukir, 90, Capt. Douglas Curry and the screw steam frigate Emerald, 51, Capt. Arthur Cumming, went on Saturday afternoon from Plymouth Sound into Hamoaze.|
The mainmast of the screw steamship Royal Albert, 121, at Devonport, is decayed. Her sails were sent to the Devonport Dockyard on Saturday. The crew are paid down, and granted 21 days' absence on leave. It is probable the crews of the Centurion, Donegal, Aboukir, and the Emerald will also be paid down, and that they will be provided with passages to the home ports.
|Tu 1 January 1861||The port division of the Channel squadron will probably continue some time at Plymouth. The screw steamship Royal Albert, 121, 850-horse power, is in Hamoaze; Admiral Stopford and Capt. Lacon are both on leave, and so is a large portion of her crew, who were paid down on the 23d ult. Her mainmast, reported to be defective, is stripped, and ready for inspection this week. There is some gossip at Devonport about transferring her crew to the Howe, which carries the same number of guns, but has a superiority of 150 horses in her engines, which are of 1,000-horse power. The masts of the Howe are not yet on board. The crew of the screw steam-frigate Emerald, 51, Capt. Arthur B. Cumming, do not expect to leave Hamoaze before April. The Aboukir, 90, Capt. Douglas Curry, has, it is said, been ashore, and will therefore most likely be docked in Keyham steam-yard. The Conqueror, 101, Capt. Edward S. Sotheby, will be placed in dock on account of the defective condition of her valves. The Donegal, 101, Capt. Henry Broadhead, is also in Hamoaze. When in the Tagus a valuable seaman lost his life. He was one of the ship's corporals, and had been absent on duty by night. When alongside he took two lanterns in each hand, stepped from the boat on to the stage or platform, walked overboard, and was unfortunately drowned. It appears that while the Donegal was at Lisbon her side ladder was drawn up by night. When this is done it is the duty of some one to fasten a rope across the opening left. On the night in question the rope was omitted to be fastened; hence the loss of the life of a valuable petty officer while attending to the service of his ship.|
|Fr 25 January 1861||Rear-Admiral Robert F. Stopford, Captain of the Channel Fleet, was at Devonport yesterday, with the intention of relinquishing the command to-day. The crew of his flagship, the Royal Albert, 121, Capt. Henry J. Lacon, will be paid down to-day, when those who have not joined other ships will, it is said, be sent to the Princess Royal, 91, Capt. Charles Fellowes, just commissioned in Portsmouth.|