HMS Kite

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Kite, 1805
Type: Sloop ; Armament 16
Launched : 1805 ; Disposal date or year : 1815

6 Feb 1807 captured the French privateer Chasseur on the Home station.

22 Aug 1807 present at the siege and bombardment of Copenhagen 15 Aug - 20 Oct 1807 and capture of Danish Fleet by Adm. Gambier.

2 Dec 1810 Kite and Quebec captured the French privateer Renard at sea.

6 Jan 1811 at Yarmouth was flying signals of distress during the gale.

30 Aug 1811 departed N. Yarmouth with dispatches for Russia.

25 Sep 1811 arrived N. Yarmouth from the Baltic.

26 Sep 1811 departed N. Yarmouth for the southward.

28 Dec 1811 arrived Portsmouth from the Downs.

18 Aug 1813 ships' boats of the Undaunted, Redwing, Kite, Caledonia, Hibernia, Barfleur, and Prince-of-Wales captured 3 gun-boats, and 24 merchant settees and tartans in the harbour of Cassis.

19 Oct 1814 arrived Portsmouth from the Mediterranean, with a small convoy of transports.

1 Nov 1814 departed Portsmouth for the River, to be paid off.

7 Nov 1814 arrived Deal from Portsmouth, and departed to the River to be paid off.

It would appear, not only from the reports current at the time at St. Jago de Cuba, in Jamaica, and at Rio de Janeiro, but from evidence which His Majesty's Commissioners have since procured, that the true history of the iniquitous transaction is as follows : on the 5th October, 1825, the Spanish brigantine, "Isabella," Francisco Granelle, Master, was captured by His Majesty's ship Redwing, Captain D. C. Clavering commanding, in the Old Calabar River, with 273 slaves on board. She was committed to the charge of a prize crew of 3 Officers and 12 men ; but a few days after she had parted from the Redwing, she fell in with the Brazilian schooner "Disuniao," Fernando da Costa Piera, Master, which the Prize Master captured, transferring 1 Officer and a part of his crew to the newly-taken prize. Soon after this division of the British force, the 2 prizes, whilst on their passage towards Sierra Leone, encountered the piratical Spanish brig, "Pelicano," commanded by Don Jozé Sagara, well armed and manned, which captured both of them after a sharp engagement, during the progress of which, and after its close, the whole of the British crews, and many of the Brazilians, were killed. The detained Spanish brigantine, "Isabella," seems to have been the property of the same parties who owned the piratical brig, which sufficiently accounts for none of her original Spanish crew being injured.
Immediately after the action, the slaves of the Brazilian schooner, "Disuniao," were divided between the 2 Spanish vessels, by whom she was also plundered of every article of value, and then allowed to proceed to Rio de Janeiro, where she arrived in the early part of the year 1826, with only 5 persons on board, all in a horribly mutilated state from the knives of the pirates.
On the 28th November, 1825, the "Pelicano" reached St. Jago de Cuba, in company with the "Isabella," which was then called the "Juanita," both vessels being fully laden with slaves.
From this time we lose sight altogether of the " Disuniao," and the "Isabella," alias "Juanita." But we find that the "Pelicano," which had formerly been His Britannic Majesty's brig-of-war, "Kite," and still retained the armament of a vessel of that class, left the Port of St. Jago de Cuba again on the 3d December, 1825, with a cargo of dry goods, under the command of Jozé Mauri, for the Coast of Africa.
It would appear that she came direct to the Rio Nunez, where Mauri employed himself in trading for slaves ; but the violence of his proceedings so irritated the natives, that they refused him all assistance in piloting his vessel down the river. The consequence was, that the "Pelicano" took the ground, and Mauri, being unable to get her off, removed the guns and stores out of her, and blew her up.
This vessel seems to have borne the various names of "Pelicano;" "Gabilar," "Gabiao," "Galvano," "Nuestra Senhora del Vinet," and "Feliz." The last is the name by which Mauri always spoke of her during the examination on the 4 Sep 1834 at Sierra Leone.