HMS Mars

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Mars, 1794
Type: 3rd rate ; Armament 74
Launched : 1794 ; Disposal date or year : 1823
BM: 1853 tons
Dimensions : length of gun-deck 176 ft. 0 in. ; extreme breadth 49 ft. 2in.
Complement: 634

30 May 1795 a squadron under Vice-adm. Hon. Wm. Cornwallis departed from Spithead on a cruise off Ushant. Brief meeting, on 8 Jun off Belle-Isle, of Vice-adm Cornwallis' squadron with French Squadron under Rear-admiral Vence, with a convoy, during which 8 merchant vessels were taken when the French squadron escaped into harbour.

16 Jun 1795 on returning off Belle-Isle Vice-adm. Cornwallis' squadron of 5 ships of the line, including the Mars, Captain Sir Charles Cotton, sighted a French Squadron of 12 ships of the line under the command of M. Villaret : on this occasion it was the turn of the British squadron to attempt to escape the advancing French fleet.

15 Apr - 15 May 1797 Mutiny at Spithead for improved pay and victuals etc. See p. 523->

21 Apr 1798 Mars, previously in company with the Ramillies and Jason, captured the French 74-gun ship Hercule, which was subsequently accepted into the Service following an expensive refit.

In Stoke Church Yard, near Plymouth, erected by the ship's company of the Mars, in memory of two of their comrades who died of their wounds in the glorious action betwixt the Mars and L'Hercule, 21 April 1798, in the Royal Naval Hospital, Plymouth.-
This monument,
To the memory of James Hinde, aged 30, and John Fitter, aged 22, seamen, who died of the wounds they received in the glorious action between the Mars 74, and L'Hercule, 74, French man of war, 21st of April 1798, in defence of their King and Country, is erected at the sole expence of the ship's company, as a tribute of regard for their deceased companions in arms.

15 Jul 1798 Action with four Spanish frigates, and capture of one:- Santa Dorotea.

31 Jan 1799 Plymouth, orders came down from the Admiralty for the Canada, Mars, Russell, and Lancaster, 64, now in Cawsand Bay, to be in readiness to sail at a moment's warning.

1 Mar 1799 Plymouth, a seaman of the Mars, who was apparently recovered from his wounds in the head, in boarding L'Hercule, 74 guns, with the gallant Lieutenant Bowker of that ship, died in the Royal Hospital here almost suddenly. The surgeons opened his head, and found a small splinter of the scull had perforated the brain which occasioned his death.

7 Mar 1799 Plymouth, orders came down this day to the Port Admiral Sir R. King, Bart, for all frigates in future to harbour in the Sound instead of Cawsand Bay, which is to be appropriated for ships of the line. This order it is said is in consequence of the Naiad frigate in the late gales of wind driving and running foul of the Mars, 74 guns, in Cawsand Bay.

12 Mar 1799 remains in Cawsand Bay.

6 Apr 1799 departed from Cawsand Bay to join the Channel fleet.

16 Apr 1799 cruising off Brest.

4 Jun 1799 arrived off Basque road.

1 Jul 1799 departed from off Basque road.

6 Jul 1799 Plymouth, arrived the Fowey cutter, Lt. Derby, from carrying dispatches to Vice Admiral Sir A. Gardner, Bart. He spake the Mars, 74, all well, last Monday, off the Isle of Aix.

12 Jul 1799 Plymouth, arrived from off the Isle of Aix the Mars, Ramilies, Ajax ; also the Volcano, Explosion, and Sulphur, gun and bomb vessels, with the Speedwell and Bilboa tenders, from the Isle of Aix.

13 Jul 1799 Plymouth, Captain Monckton arrived to take the command of the Mars, 74, vice Captain Manley.

17 Jul 1799 Plymouth, passed up the harbour this morning, the Mars, with the Tonnant, Canopus, Spartiate, Aboukir, and Conquerant, French prizes, with bands playing and cheers from the spectators, and each ship returning the cheers as she passed.

9 Sep 1799 Plymouth, went down into the Sound.

13 Sep 1799 Plymouth, departed to join Lord Bridport off Brest.

20 Sep 1799 arrived in Cawsand Bay from off Brest.

1 Oct 1799 departed on a cruise.

2 Feb 1800 Portsmouth, arrived from Torbay.

24 Feb 1800 Portsmouth, Adm. Berkeley arrived from town, and hoisted his flag on board the Mars, 74.

3 Apr 1800 Portsmouth, went down to St. Helens, and will sail from thence when the wind permits.

8 Apr 1800 Portsmouth, the Namur, 98, Captain Luke, went down to St. Helens, where she now remains, with the Mars.

23 Apr 1800 Portsmouth, departed to join the Channel fleet.

18 May 1800 Plymouth, arrived with the Atlas, from the Channel fleet, which passed up for Torbay this morning : they experienced the fury of the gale when laying to off Brest, on Friday last under storm stay-sails ; the sea ran mountains high, and the wind suddenly shifted from S. W. to N. W. lay several men of war on their beams ends, but soon righted, though they shipped several heavy seas.

30 May 1800 Plymouth, departed to join the fleet.

26 Jun 1800 Plymouth, letters from the Mars, the advanced ship of the flying squadron, state that on the 23d inst., in sight of the Brest fleet, the crew ship painted her from stem to stern, and then gave three hearty cheers.

20 Jul 1800 Plymouth, letters from the Triton, 36, dated at anchor off Brest, the 16th inst., state, that the captain had recovered from a violent blow he received in his head some time since, by the fall of a block ; he retains the command of the in-shore, or flying squadron, which communicates by signal to Earl St. Vincent the movements of the combined fleets, as this squadron occasionally anchors R.-Adm. Berkeley, in the Mars, 74, commands a fiymg detachment offshore.

3 Aug 1800 Plymouth, arrived from the Channel fleet with the Cumberland.

12 Aug 1800 Plymouth, departed for the fleet with the Pompee, London, and Ajax.

27 Sep 1800 Plymouth, arrived from off Brest, and anchored in Cawsand Bay, owing to very heavy S. W. gales, with other ships of the Channel Fleet.

8 Oct 1800 Plymouth, the Captain, 74, and Mars, 74, appeared off the Sound from the westward, laid to for orders, and then departed for Torbay.

20 Nov 1800 Plymouth, Captain Luke, of the Namur, will succeed Captain Monckton in the Mars, 74.

2 Dec 1800 Portsmouth, arrived with the St George, Defence, Ramilies, Robust, and Saturn, from the Channel Fleet.

17 Jan 1801 departed Spithead, for Plymouth, with Captains Grindall, and Atkins as passengers to join their respective ships at Plymouth.

18 Jan 1801 arrived back at Spithead with the loss of her main top mast.

19 Jan 1801 departed Spithead again.

24 Jan 1801 arrived Torbay from Spithead and sailed again to join the squadron off the Black Rocks off the coast of France.

10 Mar 1801 arrived Plymouth Sound ; relieved last Saturday by the Caesar.

10 Mar 1801 Cambridge ran foul of the Mars off the Black Rocks, on the French Coast. See below re C.M.

25 Mar 1801 paid wages and prize-money in Cawsand Bay.

27 Mar 1801 remains in Cawsand Bay.

31 Mar 1801 departed Cawsand Bay the Mars, R.-Adm. Thornborough, with the Triumph, to join the Channel Fleet.

14 Apr 1801 arrived Plymouth Sound with the loss of her main and main-top-mast, in being ran foul of in the night of the 10th instant, off the Black Rocks, by the Mars, of 74 guns, Rear-Admiral Thornborough. Two men were killed and four wounded by the falling of the main mast. She rigged up a jury main-mast, and bore away for this port.

29 Apr 1801 a Court Martial was held on board HM ship Cambridge, flag ship in Hamoaze, on Captain Lloyd, of the Mars, and Lieutenants Burnet and Davis, of the Centaur, for those ships running foul of each other, off the Black Rocks, in the night of the 10th ult. when the Court honourably acquitted Captain Lloyd and Lieutenant Burnet, and sentenced Lieutenant Davis, of the Centaur, to lose 6 months rank, and be dismissed from HM ship Centaur.

13 May 1801 her repairs being complete was taken out of dock last night. She is now alongside the Jetty, getting in her masts and rigging overhead.

25 May 1801 went into Cawsand Bay, from Hamoaze, the Mars, R.-Adm. Thornborough, Capt Lloyd.

26 May 1801 remains in Cawsand Bay and has been embarking, bullocks, and large quantities of vegetables from Mill Bay on board the Formidable, Mars, and 5 victuallers, departing shortly for the Channel Fleet.

30 May 1801 departed Cawsand Bay, the Mars, R.-Adm. Thornborough, to join the Channel Fleet.

2 Jun 1801 on the 31st ult. the Caesar was relieved by the Mars.

26 Sep 1801 came into Cawsand Bay the Glory, Robust, Formidable and Mars from the Rochefort squadron. Left them all well on the 21st instant.

29 Sep 1801 remain in Cawsand Bay the Formidable, Glory, Donnegal, Hercule, Terrible, Mars, and Magnificent.

4 Nov 1801 parted one of her anchors in Cawsand Bay, and with the second anchor "from the violence of the storm, soon afterwards brought home, so that she was under the necessity of cutting the cable and drifting out to sea, though wholly unprepared, her yards and topmasts having been struck in consequence of the gale : and soon after quitting the Bay, however, she got all up, and appeared to weather it better than could be expected."

7 Nov 1801 came into Cawsand Bay after experiencing the most dreadful weather in the Channel, but not suffering any damage.

31 Dec 1801 remains in Cawsand Bay and has this day been joined by the Neptune, 98 ; Prince, 98, and Childers, 14.

6 Jan 1802 arrived Plymouth Sound from Bath, where he had been for the recovery of his health, Rear-Admiral Thornborough. He hoisted his flag again on board the Mars, 74, in Cawsand Bay.

8 Feb 1802 remains in Cawsand Bay.

3 Mar 1802 orders received at Plymouth to pay L'Impetueux and the Mars.

14 Mar 1802 remains in Cawsand Bay.

9 Apr 1802 this morning R.-Adm. Thornbough struck his flag and the Mars was weighed from Cawsand Bay to go into Hamoaze to be stripped and paid off. The stripping of the ship started between the Island and the Main as she went up the harbour to her moorings, but the wind being unfavourable she had to be warped up the harbour.

14 Apr 1802 is now ready to be paid off, which will take place tomorrow.

25 Aug 1802 this forenoon the Mars, 74, which has been in dock some time past, in coming out of dock to make room for the Commerce de Marseilles, 120, received some damage, which has hogged her a little. The Commerce now occupies her dock, and is to he broken up and sold as old timber.

4 Oct 1802 went into dock at Plymouth, the Impetueux, 84, and remains in dock with the Tonnant, Mars, Terrible, and Fisgard, to be repaired.

11 Oct 1802 the Mars, 74, hogged some weeks since in hauling out of dock at Plymouth to make room for the Commerce de Marseilles, to be broken up, is now in dock, and almost repaired.

14 Dec 1802 taken out of Dock at Plymouth and put in Ordinary.

11 Mar 1803 in view of the apparent unravelling of the Peace of Amiens and the reintroduction of Impressment the Admiralty order the following ships of the line to be commissioned at Plymouth : Mars, Malta, Tonant, Conqueror, and Spartiate.

12 Mar 1803 Capt E Buller apptd to the Mars.

21 Mar 1803 the Royal Marine contingent of 109 officers, NCOs, and men, joined the Mars, and will not only do their jobs as Royal Marines, but have, in recent years, become good seamen, getting the rigging &c., ready for commission.

24 Mar 1803 being stored and provisioned for 6 months.

31 Mar 1803 remains in Hamoaze fitting for sea.

23 Apr 1803 dropped down from Hamoaze to Cawsand Bay, the Mars, Capt Sutton.

16 May 1803 Adm Cornwallis sailed on Monday from Torbay, with a squadron consisting of the following ships : Dreadnought, 98, Hon Adm Cornwallis, First Capt Murray, Second Capt Brace ; Neptune, 98, Capt Drury ; Albion, 74, Capt Ferrier ; Minotaur, 74, Capt Louis ; Ardent, 64, Capt Winthorp ; Culloden, 74, R.-Adm Campbell, Capt Lane ; Venerable, 74, Capt Searle ; Sceptre, 74, Capt Dickson ; Thunderer, 74, Capt Bedford ; and Russel, 74, Capt Williams. The Tonant, Malta, Spartiate, Plantagenet, Mars and Conqueror, lying in Cawsand Bay are nearly ready for sea, and want but few men to complete their complement.

1 Jun 1803 departed Plymouth to join the Channel Fleet.

18 Jun 1803 the Dryad arrived Spithead from the fleet, the Culloden, Russell, and Doris forming the inshore squadron at present, whilst the Tonnant, Spartiate, and Mars were cruising off Rochefort.

12 Sep 1803 arrived Cawsand Bay from the Channel Fleet.

13 Sep 1803 came into Hamoaze to refit.

19 Sep 1803 departed Plymouth for the Channel Fleet.

8 Oct 1803 letters received from the Conqueror, Capt T Louis, date 29 Sep., off the Black Rock, off Brest, state that the inshore squadron, including the Mars, Capt Sutton ; the Spartiate, Capt Manby ; Defiance, Capt P C Durham ; and the Ardent, Capt Winthrop, are all well and healthy.

Circa 28 Apr 1804 Capt Duff, apptd to the Mars.

Circa 5 May 1804 Capt Pym, protempore to the Mars.

Circa 20 Oct 1804 the Mars, Capt Duff, joined the Ville de Paris, San Josef, Prince, Prince George, Princess Royal, Temeraire, Windsor Castle, Glory, and Plantagenet at Torbay.

May 1805 Spithead, for foreign service.

20 Aug 1805 Dreadnought, Colossus and Achille, chased from off Cadiz by the Franco-Spanish fleet. 21st joined by the Mars, and was back on station once the joint fleet was in harbour.

10 Oct 1805 off Cadiz - the tactical preparations etc. for the forthcoming battle. 20 Oct combined fleet departed Cadiz, fleet manoeuvres.

21 Oct 1805 England expects….. &c. signalled, the first shots of the Battle of Trafalgar are fired. Nelson shot. Resumé of what had taken place. Individual ship actions and losses : Mars. The post-mortem commences ; Summary of British casualties ; Death of Nelson ;

22-30 Oct 1805 losses amongst the prizes due to bad weather etc: Redoutable, Rayo, Monarca (sank) ; Fougueux, Bucentaure, Indomptable, San-Francisco-de-Asis, Aigle, Berwick (wrecked) ; Algésiras (taken into Cadiz) ; Santa-Ana, Neptuno (recaptured) ; Santisima-Trinidad (scuttled) ; Achille, Intrépide, San-Augustin (burnt) ; the washup ; burial of Nelson ;

27-28 Jul 1806 Mars, Superb and Africa, a part of a squadron under Cdre R. G. Keats, in lat. 47° N., long. 7° west when the Mars sighted and went in chase of a French frigate squadron, but were unable to keep the Mars in sight ; after a long chase the Mars captured the French frigate Rhin, which was purchased into the service.

25 Sep 1806 with a squadron under Commod. Sir Samuel Hood, off Rochefort, when a squadron of French frigates, bound to the West Indies, escaped : the signal for a general chase was given, resulting in the Armide striking to the Centaur ; Minerve to the Monarch ; Infatigable to the Mars, who also chased the Gloire, and at 3 P.M. compelled her to surrender, all 4 frigates being added to the Royal Navy.

Torbay 29 Dec 1806 Remains.

8 Aug 1807 arrived Copenhagen with a large convoy of transports for the siege and bombardment of Copenhagen 15 Aug - 20 Oct 1807 and capture of Danish Fleet by Adm. Gambier.

May - Oct 1808 in the Baltic with a fleet under V.-adm Sir J Saumarez.

30 Aug 1808 joined the Centaur, Implacable and Swedish fleet blockading the Russians in the port of Rogerswick.

Hull, 2 Oct 1810 the Mars and Hero are reported to have passed Yarmouth for the Thames with a fleet of 600-700 ships from the Baltic, 40-50 of them being prizes.

Lisbon 9 Apr 1811 departed from the Tagus with convoy for England.

Portsmouth 21 Apr 1811 arrived with a convoy from Lisbon.

Deal 24 May 1811 arrived from Portsmouth bound to the Baltic.

Deal 26 May 1811 departed to join the Baltic fleet.

Harwich 12 Sep 1811 On passage from the Baltic.

Deal 12 Sep 1811 arrived, from the Baltic.

Deal 23 Sep 1811 departed to join the fleet off Flushing.

Deal 12 Oct 1811 arrived from off Flushing.

Deal 13 Oct 1811 departed to the westward.

Portsmouth 16 Oct 1811 arrived from the Downs.

Portsmouth 30 Oct 1811 arrived at Spithead from St. Helen's.

Portsmouth 17 Nov 1811 departed for the eastward.

Deal 18 Nov 1811 arrived from Portsmouth.

Deal 15 Jan 1812 departed for Portsmouth.

Portsmouth 15 Jan 1812 arrived.

Deal 10 Dec 1812 arrived from the Baltic.