Sir Thomas Graves

RolesNaval Sailor 
Date of Birth1747 - Castledawson, Londonderry, Londonderry ODNB
First Known Service1765ODNB
FatherReverend John Graves (1709-1770)EWIKI
MotherJane Hudson (d.1788)EWIKI
UncleSamuel Graves (1713-1787)ref:950
BrotherSamuel GravesRNB1823
BrotherJohn Graves (c.1741-1811)RNB1823
BrotherRichard Graves (1758-1836)RNB1823
Last Known Service12.8.1812ODNB
Date of Death29.3.1814ODNB

Event History

Date fromDate toEventSource
30.10.1765 Lieutenant ADM 6/20/95CSORN
7.7.17751.1776Bolton (12), Lieutenant and Commanding Officer ADM 6/21/212
Issued by Samuel Graves (1713-1787), North America
Commission confirmed 12.9.1776
15.3.1779 Commander ADM 6/22/199CSORN
15.3.17795.5.1781Savage (14), Commander and Commanding Officer ADM 6/22/199
Issued by John Byron (1723-1786), North America
Commission confirmed 21.11.1780
ADM 6/22
5.5.1781 Captain ADM 6/22/348TRN4
5.5.178125.9.1781Bedford (74), Captain and Commanding Officer ADM 6/22/348
Issued by Lord George Brydges Rodney (1st Baron Rodney) (1719-1792), Barbados
Commission confirmed 5.10.1781
5.9.1781 Battle of the Chesapeake 
29.9.178124.9.1783Magicienne (32), Captain and Commanding OfficerBWAS-1714
2.1.1783 Action of 1783-01-02 
1.1.1801 Rear-Admiral of the WhiteODNB
1.1.180128.10.1801Defiance (74), as Flag Officer, Rear-Admiral of the WhiteBWAS-1714
2.4.1801 Battle of Copenhagen 
3.4.1801 Appointed Knight Commander of the Order of the BathRNB1823
9.180323.4.1804Blenheim (74), Captain and Commanding OfficerBWAS-1714
23.4.1804 Rear-Admiral of the WhiteTRN4
10.1804 Foudroyant (80), as Flag Officer, Rear-Admiral of the WhiteBWAS-1714
9.11.1805 Vice-Admiral of the BlueTRN4
28.4.1808 Vice-Admiral of the WhiteTRN4
31.7.1810 Vice-Admiral of the RedTRN4
12.8.1812 Admiral of the BlueTRN4


ODNBOxford Dictionary of National BiographyOxford University PressWeb Site
EWIKIWikipediaVariousWeb Site
ref:950Geni Family History
RNB1823Royal Navy BiographyJohn MarshallDigital Book
CSORNCommissioned Sea Officers of the Royal NavyDavid Bonner Smith / Syrett & DiNardoWeb Site
BWAS-1714British Warships in the Age of Sail 1714 - 1792Rif WinfieldBook
ADM 6/22ADM 6/22 Commission and Warrant Book 1779 July-1782 Archive
TRN4The Royal Navy : a history from the earliest times to the present Vol IVWilliam Laid ClowesDigital Book

Previous comments on this page

Posted by Bob Brooks on Monday 5th of August 2013 20:57

The date of rank of Thomas Graves (c1747-1814) as a Lieutenant was 30 Oct 1765 per the "Navy List" in the 1774, 1775 & 1776 "Court and City Register."

During the American War he was appointed Lieut., HMS Lively, 6th/20, on 26 Jan 1774 (ADM 6/21, p.11) and proceeded to America; on 20 Dec 1774 his uncle VAdm Samuel Graves appointed him as Lieut. & Commander, HM Armed Schooner Diana, which was burned by rebels the night of 27-28 May 1775 when aground on the Winnisimet Ferry landing (Chelsea, Massachusetts). Seriously burned in the incident the facial scars are apparent on his portrait as an Admiral. During the Battle of Bunker Hill (17 June 1775), Graves commanded the army's Armed Sloop Spitfire (6 x 3pdr) armed for HM service by Gen Thomas Gage and manned from HMS Preston, 4th/50, VAdm Grave's flagship. On 07 July 1775, VAdm Graves appointed him Lieut. & Commander of HM Bomb-brig Bolton (4 x 3pdr + 2 howitzers) from which he was superseded and joined Preston and returned to England with his uncle.

Her apparently remained unemployed until he was posted as 1st Lieut, HMS Europa, 3rd/64, on 07 Feb 1778 (ADM 6/21, p. 364).

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