Category Archives: Privateering

St Mary's Church, Shirehampton, Bristol, England

Obelisk dedicated to the memory of Captain John Shaw Haven d. 1778, in Shirehampton, Bristol.

Location

St Mary's Church, Shirehampton, Bristol, England

Transcript

'Sacred to the memory of John Shaw Haven Master of Hungroad, Port of Bristol and formerly captain of the LION Privateer of 44 guns and 168 men which on the night of the 6th of December 1778 engaged L'ORIENT, French Man of War of 74 guns and 800 men, the scene of action was the Bay of Biscay where after 2 hours close engagement the enemy was beaten off with the loss of 137 killed and 244 wounded, the Lion had 22 killed and 19 wounded, this gallant commander died December 20 1796 Aged 80 years'

Details

Type: Obelisk
Position: Churchyard
Vessel: Lion

People

Shaw, John
Age:
Date of Death: 20/12/1796
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Master
Organisation:

Extra

Bibliography: J.W. Damer Powell 'Bristol Privateers and Ships of War' (Bristol 1930) p. 248.

Bangor Abbey, Bangor, County Down, Northern Ireland

Memorial at Bangor Abbey, Bangor, County Down, Northern Ireland commemorating Captain George Colvill, d. 1780 in the loss of the ‘Amazon’

Location

Bangor Abbey, Bangor, County Down, Northern Ireland

Transcript

'Born to a course of manly Action free, / I dauntless trod ye fluctuating sea, / In [p]ompous war, or happier peace to bring / Joy to my Sire, and honour to my King; / And much by favour to the God was done; / E'e half the term of human life was run. / One fatal night returning from the bay, / whence British fl[eets] ye Gallic lands survey, / Whilst with war[m ho]pe my trembling heart beat high, / My friends, my kindred, and my country nigh / Lasht by the wind, the waves arose & bore; / Our ship in shattered fragments to the shore; / There ye flak'd surge opprest my darkening sight, / And there my eyes for ever lost the light. / Capt. George Colvill, of the private ship of war 'Amazon' & only son / of Robert Colvill of Bangor, was wrec'd near this ground 25th Feb. / 1780, in ye 29th year of his Age'

Details

Description: A very fine example of carving, the top section of this headstone depicts two cannons, an anchor, log and line, sextant and an hour glass. These decorative motifs are carved in relief, while the inscription below is incised.
Type: Gravestone
Position: Churchyard
Materials: Slate
Vessel: Amazon

People

Colvill, George
Age: 28
Date of Death: 25/2/1780
Cause of Death: Vessel Loss
Rank / Occupation: Master
Organisation: Unknown

Extra

Notes: This headstone is lying flat, and broken into four main and three small pieces, with a small section of the slate missing in the centre, where the top layer of the slate has flaked off. This headstone was originally screwed onto a wooden board, which has mostly rotted away at time of recording (2004). There are patches of lichen on the surface of the slate. Headstone lies beside two other slate Colvill(e) headstones, which are also lying flat. These three gravestones are surrounded by a low (76cm high) wall, constructed of brick but plastered. Pebbles fill in the spaces between the gravestones and the low wall. A cannon (measuring 150 cms in length) belonging to the ship the 'Amazon', which was salvaged from Bangor bay, now sits just outside the Abbey walls, with a brass plaque detailing its history.
Recorder: C. Flintham