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Nominal Guns32BWAS-1714
NationalityGreat Britain
OperatorRoyal Navy
Keel Laid Down2.1779BWAS-1714
How acquiredPurpose builtBWAS-1714
ShipyardNortham - Devon BWAS-1714
Designed by
Edward HuntBritish
Ship Builder
Dockyard Staff
Service 1757-1786
CategoryFifth RateBWAS-1714
Ship TypeFrigateBWAS-1714
Sailing RigShip RiggedBWAS-1714


DimensionMeasurementTypeMetric EquivalentBWAS-1714
Length of Gundeck126' 0"Imperial Feet38.4048 
Length of Keel103' 9 ⅞"Imperial Feet31.4166 
Breadth35' 7"Imperial Feet10.7036 
Depth in Hold12' 2"Imperial Feet3.683 
Burthen699 2394Tons BM 


30.8.1780Broadside Weight = 246 Imperial Pound ( 111.561 kg)BWAS-1714
Upper Gun Deck26 British 12-Pounder
Quarterdeck4 British 24-Pound Carronade
Quarterdeck4 British 6-Pounder
Forecastle2 British 24-Pound Carronade
Forecastle2 British 6-Pounder

Crew Complement

Date# of MenNotesSource
1778250Design Complement

8 Ship Commanders

11.8.1780 - 1.1.1783Captain
Thomas MackenzieBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1765-1810
Transfered ADM 6/22/160
1.1.1783 - 23.12.1783Captain
Thomas TroubridgeBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1781-1794
ADM 6/23/233
Issued by
Edward HughesBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1735-1793
, East Indies - Asia
Confirmed 21.7.1784
23.12.1783 - 7.1786Captain
Simon MackenzieBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1778-1786
ADM 6/23/316
Issued by
Edward HughesBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1735-1793
, East Indies - Asia
Confirmed 18.2.1786
21.9.1790 - 22.11.1790Captain
Richard Rundle BurgessBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1782-1795
ADM 6/24/68
ADM 6/24
John LaugharneBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1776-1816
ADM 6/24/88
ADM 6/24
1.1793 - 23.7.1794Captain
Edmund NagleBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1770-1819
23.7.1794 - 1795Captain
Sir Thomas WolleyBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1777-1814
ADM 6/25/65
1796 - 13.7.1796Captain
Sir Erasmus GowerBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1762-1810

3 Commissioned Officers

22.11.1790 - 21.3.1791First Lieutenant
Anselm John GriffithsBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1781-1841
Transfered ADM 6/24/92
ADM 6/24
22.11.1790 - 31.3.1790Second Lieutenant
John HallettBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1790-1791
Transfered ADM 6/24/93
ADM 6/24
10.3.1793 - 7.1793Lieutenant
Henry BlackwoodBritish
Naval Sailor
Service 1782-1830

Service History

30.8.1780building at Northam - Devon at a cost of £8285.4.3dBWAS-1714
2.9.1780Began coppering and fitting at Portsmouth Dockyard - Portsmouth BWAS-1714
18.11.1780Completed coppering and fitting at Portsmouth Dockyard - Portsmouth BWAS-1714
13.3.1781Sailed for the East IndiesBWAS-1714
16.4.1781Battle of Porto Praya
1.7.1781Took the Ship
Held Woltemade 1774-1781
Dutch Merchant Ship
near Saldhana Bay

21.7.1781Attack in Saldanha Bay
3.9.1782Battle of Trincomalee
7.1786Returned home to be paid offBWAS-1714
11.1791Began fitting at Deptford Dockyard - Deptford BWAS-1714
3.1793Completed fitting at Deptford Dockyard - Deptford at a cost of £17845.0.0dBWAS-1714
13.7.1796Wrecked on Anticosti island in the St Lawrence estuaryBWAS-1714


Previous comments on this page

Posted by Frank van Andel on Sunday 5th of February 2017 19:33

What happened to the crew of the Held Woltemade, which was taken near Saldhana Bay? In the VOC log it doesn't say they were killed, just "lifted" (= taken from board by the British)

Posted by Ian Bates on Friday 5th of October 2012 12:03

The captain of this frigate when it was wrecked in 1796 was Captain Edward Leveson-Gower (8 May 1776 – 6 December 1853).
Captain Sir Erasmus Gower was in command of HMS Triumph (74) at this time, not HMS Active (32).

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