HMS Nassau

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Nassau, 1785
Type: Troop ship ; late 3d Rate ; Armament 64
Disposal Date : 14 Oct 1799 : Wrecked on the coast of Holland : crew, except 42, saved. Capt. George Tripp.
B.M.: 1384 tons
Notes:

13 Jun 1797 escaped the mutiny at the Nore, being fired on by the Monmouth - see p. 74 www.naval-review.org/issues/1929-1.pdf.

1 Jan 1799 at the Nore.

Aug-Oct 1799 reduced to 36 guns and employed as a troop-ship on expedition to Holland until wrecked off the coast.

Loss of HM ship Nassau. Extract from a letter from an Officer late of the Nassau, dated Yarmouth, 31 Oct. 1799. I am sorry to inform you that the Nassau struck on a sand bank, called the Kicks, off the Texel, at twelve o'clock on Thursday evening the 14th inst. We fired guns as a signal of distress all night, but to no purpose, as it blew such a gale of wind, and the breakers were so high, that it was impossible any vessel could have come to our assistance. At day-light all our hopes vanished, and death in all its dismal forms appeared. All hands were employed making a raft to save our lives, when about eleven o'clock in the forenoon, we saw a brig making all sail possible towards us, but she could not venture within a mile and half of the Nassau and it continued blowing so hard, that it was impossible for a boat to venture out. However, hope began to revive in us, and we sat down on the quarter-deck, about twelve o'clock, and forced down a few mouthfuls of mutton and a glass or two of wine. I think I shall never forget the serious countenances of all present at this repast. We sat down upon the quarter-deck, as the water had driven us from every other part, and even there the sea washed over us. About three o'clock we hoisted out one of the boats, and the Captain of Marines Andrew McIntosh, Purser Mr. E. Bennett, and Midshipman Hugh Owen, Captain's Coxswain Charles Youle, Boatswain's Mate Robert Chambers, Sailmaker Dan. McNeal, Captain of the Forecastle Patrick Helmsley, Captain of the Forecastle David Gammel ; Boys Thomas Scales, Thomas Lowe, and John Coleman ; with the warranted caulker John Gent, went in her to try if they could make the brig, but alas they had not gone above ten yards from the ship when the boat upset, and all hands perished. After the accident happened, there was not a word to be heard in the ship ; all hands again desponded, till about five o'clock, when the wind began to moderate, and the sloop Jalouse sent her boats to and fro, loaded with our people and was reputed to have saved 205 persons when the wind got up by about six o'clock in the evening, which prevented any more boats going to the assistance of the rest. Next morning, however, there were a good number of boats, which came to assist the rest of the men and officers, and had the good fortune to save all except about 100, who perished before any assistance could be given, and by the upsetting of the Nassau's boats. We arrived here at Yarmouth yesterday forenoon, and in all probability shall remain here until after the trial of the Captain. There was not a single person who saved any of his property except what was on his back.