Thursday, February 22

In The News

The London Gazette 
Publication date:5 March 1814 

Wednesday, February 21

Meet LT McLean

HMS Acasta is proud to introduce to you, dear reader, the latest member of our esteemed company!

Shea W. McLean was born and raised in Mobile, AL and is of Scottish and English heritage. His father was a steamship agent in the Port of Mobile which is, presumably, how he received his fascination with all things maritime. McLean was an exchange student at Kings College, University of London, in 1986 and received his BA in History at the University of South Alabama in 1987. While still in college, he received his commission in the United States Army in 1984. After a brief stint in the Army, McLean decided to continue his education and received his MS in Nautical Archaeology at The Florida State University in 1997. Since then, McLean has pursued a lifelong career in nautical history and maritime archaeology. 

Over his 30+ year career as a marine archaeologist and museum curator, McLean has worked on a myriad of archaeological projects and is a member of several historical societies. His archaeological exploits range from early vessels of exploration (De Luna’s 1559 colonization fleet) to a number of civil war era vessels (Confederate submarine HL Hunley, CSS Alabama, etc.) with a healthy dose of colonial vessels in-between. 

McLean’s expertise and interest lay mainly with historic artifacts, ship construction, celestial navigation, and maritime history. He has been a living historian and reenactor since 1998.

McLean currently serves as the Curator of Battleship USS Alabama Memorial Park in Mobile, AL. He spends much of his time with his beloved wife Caroline Newton-Jones McLean (Portsmouth, Hampshire, UK) and his three cherished daughters: Brooke, Chelsea, and Katherine.

Tuesday, February 20

The Diary of George Hodge

From the article:

Diary of 18th century sailor provides fascinating insight into life below decks in Nelson's navy 

UPDATED: 07:35 EST, 14 August 2008 

"A unique record of the British navy between 1790 and 1833 that was compiled by a sailor has emerged in the US.

The diary of George Hodge shows the "below decks" view of life at sea during a crucial time for Britain's senior service.

The self-educated seaman begins the journal with the words: "George Hodge, his Book Consisting of Difrint ports & ships that I have sailed in since the year 1790. Aged 13 years." 

He recorded the ladies of leisure with whom he associated, painted stunning pictures of ships and flags as well as a self portrait.

Images of ordinary seamen from the time of Nelson's navy are very rare."

Be sure to read the rest of this article and see the rest of the images over at the Daily Mail:

Monday, February 19

Recent Updates

It is our pleasure to inform you, dear reader, that we have recently updated the CREW and SCHEDULE pages to be as accurate as possible.

The purpose of the HMS ACASTA and the ROYAL TARS of OLD ENGLAND is to accurately portray a crew of His Majesty's Royal Navy circa 1800-1810 for the educational benefit of the public and for the mutual research and enjoyment of the individual members.

Our organization will educate via a series of first person activities designed to demonstrate the real lives of sailors as they go about their business and live their lives. Landing Parties, Surveying Crews, Recruitment Drives, Press Gangs, Shore Leave... these are but a few of the activities that our crew will undertake whilst encamped at an event. During duty hours, we follow proper Navy protocols and sailors are expected to live a sailor's life.

You can learn more about our group on the ABOUT US page.

If you enjoy reading the adventures of HMS Acasta, be certain to become an honorary member of the crew. This is a easy way to show us that you're out there and paying attention. It is a simple matter really, there is a blue button at the bottom of the page that will allow you to join.

And Second, I would ask that you comment from time to time on the posts that interest you the most. This is an excellent way to let the crew of the Acasta know what you, the reader, is the most interested in seeing. It is always most gratifying to know what the readers like. For those of you that have commented in the past, we thank you for you support and interest!

If you find a post that you are particularly fond of... be sure to share a link with your friends, over Facebook, Tumblr, Google Plus, etc. so they can enjoy it too!

Thursday, February 15

Know Your Nelson 5

Wednesday, February 14

Acasta Marriages


… Pabnall, Thomas, of H.M.S. Acasta, gunner, 21, b., & Ann Monk, of Portsmouth, a minor, with c of her m., Jane Monk, at Portsea, 8 Oct., 1801.


… Tayloe, William, of H.M.S. Acasta, w., & Jane White, of Pitsligo, Scotland, 21, sp., at Portsea, 26 Dec, 1801.

From: Hampshire allegations for marriage licences granted by the Bishop of Winchester, 1689 to 1837