Monday, June 30

Meet Midshipman John Race Godfrey

GODFREY.
Acasta Midshipman under Capt Kerr, c.1805-1815

John Race Godfrey, born 11 March, 1790, is son of the late John Godfrey, Esq., of Bath, by Sarah, daughter of the late Wm. Wigget, Esq., and sister of the late General Bulwer, of Heydon Hall, co. Norfolk.

This officer entered the Navy, 9 June, 1803, as Fst.-cl. Vol., on board the Prince of Wales 98, bearing the flags in succession of Admirals Sir Robt. Calder, Sir Jas. Saumarez, Edw. Thombrough, and Lord Gambier ; while in which ship he took part, as Midshipman, in the action of 22 July, 1805, and served on shore throughout the operations connected with the attack on Copenhagen. After the latter event he served, until his promotion to the rank of Lieutenant, 15 March, 1815, in the Sultan 74, Capt. Edw. Griffith, Lavinia 44, Capt. John Hancock, Thames 32, Capt. Hon. Granville Geo. Waldegrave, President 58, Capt. Sam. Warren, and Acasta 40, Capt. Alex. Robt. Kerr. During the four years of his continuance in the latter ship, Mr. Godfrey, who had previously visited the Mediterranean and Cape of Good Hope, assisted at the re-capture of the 20-gun ship Levant, and also at the taking of five privateers, carrying in the whole 61 guns and 439 men.

In 1820 he obtained an appointment in the Coast Guard; after 12 years' retention of which he was placed on half-pay. He has not since had any official occupation. Lieut. Godfrey married, 7 July, 1817, Augusta Maria, daughter of the late John Marsh, Esq., of Thornbury, Gloucestershire, by whom he has issue six children.

Source: A NAVAL BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY: COMPRISING THE LIFE AND SERVICES OF EVERY LIVING OFFICER IN HER MAJESTY'S NAVY, FROM THE RANK OF ADMIRAL OF THE FLEET TO THAT OF LIEUTENANT, INCLUSIVE. Compiled from Authentic and Family Documents. BY WILLIAM E. O'BYRNE, ESQ.
LONDON: JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET, PUBLISHER TO THE ADMIRALTY. 1849.

Friday, June 27

Lt. Hamilton's Camp


Acasta 1st Lt. Jas. Hamilton giving a talk about Naval life to the publick at the
Ramsey House's Jane Austen event June 7th 2014.









Hamilton's camp and the other Acastas assembled

Monday, June 23

Midshipman George Gambier

GAMBIER.
Acasta Midshipman under Capt. Kerr, c.1809-1811

George Cornish Gambier is brother of Capt. Robt. Gambier, R.N.

This officer entered the Navy, 18 June, 1808, as Sec.-cl. Boy, on board the Thisbe 28, Capt. Wm. Rogers, bearing the flag in the river Thames of Hon. Hen. Edwin Stanhope; served, as Midshipman, from 20 Oct. 1809, to 14 Nov. 1811, of the Unicorn and Acasta frigates, both commanded by Capt. Alex. Robt. Kerr, in the Bay of Biscay; then joined the Malta 80, bearing the flag in the Mediterranean of Rear-Admiral Benj. Hallowell ; and, on 6 March, 1815, was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant. His next appointments were, on the East India station, to the Orlando 36, Capt. John Clavell, Minden 74, flag-ship of Sir Rich. King, and Topaze 46, Capt. John Rich. Lumley. He assumed command, 7 Dec. 1819, of the Curlew sloop, and on 4 June, 1821,
was posted into the Dauntless 24.
He was paid off, on his return from India, towards the close of 1823, and since that period has been on half-pay.
Source: A NAVAL BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY: COMPRISING THE LIFE AND SERVICES OF EVERY LIVING OFFICER IN HER MAJESTY'S NAVY, FROM THE RANK OF ADMIRAL OF THE FLEET TO THAT OF LIEUTENANT, INCLUSIVE. Compiled from Authentic and Family Documents. BY WILLIAM E. O'BYRNE, ESQ.
LONDON: JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET, PUBLISHER TO THE ADMIRALTY. 1849.

Wednesday, June 18

The Battle of Stoney Creek



The Battle of Stoney Creek reenactment from a bird's eye view, filmed with a DJI Phantom 2 Vision.

Friday, June 13

Roll the Dice!


This week, we shall highlight past posts or groups of posts that you may find of interest.



Wednesday, June 11

Wintering in Bermuda


This week, we shall highlight past posts or groups of posts that you may find of interest.

Today we will look back at posts that try to imagine how the Acasta might have spent her winter in Bermuda in 1813. This series of posts was capped off with a very special post from Gordon Laco the lead historical consultant for the film 'Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World'.



Tuesday, June 10

Looking Back


This week, we shall highlight past posts or groups of posts that you may find of interest.

Today we will look back at the Naval Event at Niagara on the Lake in 2012:

Monday, June 9

John Fraser, Volunteer First Class

FRASER.
Acasta Volunteer First Class under Capt. Dunn, 11 Nov. 1805.

John Fraser entered the Navy, 11 Nov. 1805, as Fst.-cl. Vol., on board the Acasta 40, Capt. Rich. Dalling Dunn, with which officer he continued to serve, in the Royal George, flag-ship of Sir John Duckworth, San Josef 110, Hibernia 110, and Armide 33, until Aug. 1812. He took part, on board the Acasta, in the action off St. Domingo, 6 Feb. 1806 ; was in the Eoyal George at the passage of the Dardanells, in Feb. 1807; and, while attached to the San Josef, served with the flotilla in the expedition to the Walchercn in 1809, and co-operated in the defence of Cadiz, where, in April, 1810, he beheld the fall of Fort Matagorda.

Source: A NAVAL BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY: COMPRISING THE LIFE AND SERVICES OF EVERY LIVING OFFICER IN HER MAJESTY'S NAVY, FROM THE RANK OF ADMIRAL OF THE FLEET TO THAT OF LIEUTENANT, INCLUSIVE. Compiled from Authentic and Family Documents. BY WILLIAM E. O'BYRNE, ESQ.
LONDON: JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET, PUBLISHER TO THE ADMIRALTY. 1849.

Thursday, June 5

British Tar Images


Ready for some fantastic primary images of British & American Sailors from 1740-1790?
Be sure to check out Kyle Dalton's blog about JUST that very thing!


Wednesday, June 4

FINAL CALL FOR MAIL!


FINAL Call to ALL Reenactors, 
Historians and Creative Writers!

The Royal Navy reenacting group that represents HMS Acasta will be attending the Jane Austen Festival in July of this year. One of the things that I'd like to be able to do is deliver a 'mail packet' full of letters to the various Acasta members. This is a project that I have undertaken in the past with other groups with awesome results.

This is where YOU come in, but HURRY! ALL submissions must be received by July 1st to be included.

Anyone who would like to submit a period correct letter to add to the packet is encouraged to do so! We'd love to have your contribution, however large or small! Anything added to the packet will help to enhance the historical experience for not only the Acastas who receive them, but for the public who will attend the Festival as well.


At last year's event, the Mail Packet was a huge hit with the Acastas and the public alike. Mr. Midshipman Raley delivered the packet to the Captain about mid-day on Saturday and the letters were passed out.

Some examples of things that we got as part of the project:

The Doctor got a secret coded message from Sir Joseph Blaine with the Admiralty. Obviously from a Patrick O'Brian fan.

Lt. Tumbusch got a notice from the Dutch East India Company letting him know that his stock was now worthless.

Rev. Mr. Griswold got a letter letting him know of the death of one of his parishioners.

Mr. Raley got a letter from his 'mother' back home written a professional author of nautical historical fiction.

A letter arrived for the Purser from a mysterious wife and children he claimed to know nothing of.

Capt. Freymann got a letter from a father in England looking for news of the location of his two sons.

Need some ideas for what to write? Try one of these:

Letter from a friend or colleague back home. 
(But none from 'family' this year if you please, last year we had to leave a letter out because Mr. Raley got TWO letters from his 'mother')
A bill or request for payment.
An overdue payment of debt.
A letter carrying news of the war(s)

Or, use the link below to see some other types of period letters:

The Complete Letter Writer...

Wondering what a period letter looks like? Here are some beautiful examples:

http://www.bathpostalmuseum.co.uk/john-palmer/

Contact me to find out where to send your finished letter… or questions, or for any other additional information.

Finshed letters will need to be to ME by the end of June so that they can find their way into the Mail Packet! But remember, all submissions need to be received by July 1st so that they can be included.

Don't know WHO to write to? Here's the lot of Acastas who are usually to be found at the festival:

So pick up your pen and paper and get writing, and HAVE FUN!

Tuesday, June 3

Hat Ribbons



A fun naval project done for the ACASTA sailors…

Monday, June 2

First Lieutenant Forbes

FORBES.
Acasta First Lieutenant, under Capt. Dunn, c.1806-07, aged 26 years.

John Forbes, born 15 March, 1780, at Aberdeen, is son of the late Geo. Forbes, Esq., a merchant of that city, by Jane, daughter of Lumsden, of Alford and Cromar, co. Aberdeen ; and brother of the late Capt. David Forbes, B. I. Co.'s Service, Governor of Ternate.

This officer entered the Navy, 6 Feb. 1794, as Fst.-cl. Vol., on board the Minotauk 74, Capt. Thos. Louis, in which ship,, bearing successively the flags of Admirals Macbride, Waldegrave, Colpoys, and Lord Keith, he served the whole of his time, and was present at the reduction of Ste. Lucie in 1796, the battle of the Nile in 1798, and in divers operations on the coast of Italy, including the capture of Naples, Genoa, &c. Being confirmed to a Lieutenancy, 25 Dec. 1800, in the Florentine 36, Capt. John Broughton, he assisted at the landing of the troops in Egypt in 1801, and for that service was presented with the Turkish gold medal. From May, 1803, until March, 1806, Mr. Forbes continued to be employed with Captain, afterwards Rear-Admiral Louis, in the Conqueror 74, Leopard 50, and Canopus 80, the last two years as his Flag-Lieutenant ; during which period he commanded a squadron of boats in the celebrated Catamaran expedition against the Boulogne flotilla in 1804, was on hoard the Canopus in the action off St. Domingo 6 Feb. 1806, and came into collision with the batteries at Cadiz. After cruizing for a short period in the Channel, as First of the Acasta 40, Capt. Rich. Dalling Dunn, he removed, in that capacity, to the Royal George 100, bearing the flag of Sir John Thos. Duckworth, under whom he was wounded in the head and body at the passage of the Dardanelles in Feb. 1807.

Source: A NAVAL BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY: COMPRISING THE LIFE AND SERVICES OF EVERY LIVING OFFICER IN HER MAJESTY'S NAVY, FROM THE RANK OF ADMIRAL OF THE FLEET TO THAT OF LIEUTENANT, INCLUSIVE. Compiled from Authentic and Family Documents. BY WILLIAM E. O'BYRNE, ESQ.
LONDON: JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET, PUBLISHER TO THE ADMIRALTY. 1849.