HMS Rover

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Rover, 1832
Type: Sloop ; Armament 18
Launched : 1832 ; Disposal date or year : 1845

Jul 1830 Building at Chatham.

14 Jul 1832 is shortly due to be commissioned.

4 Aug 1832 is being made ready for sea at Portsmouth.

18 Aug 1832 fitting out at Chatham.

2 Nov 1832 arrived Spithead from the eastward and to join V.-Adm. Sir P. Malcolm's squadron in the Downs when practicable.

End of 1832, a part of a squadron of vessels involved in the blockade of the ports of Holland, which was defying the great Powers with regard to the Belgian question. See p. 270-1 at

9 Nov 1832 having previously arrived the Downs, from Spithead, departed for the North Sea with the Vernon and Castor, and two French vessels, La Résolue, and the Calypso.

18 Nov 1832 has detained and sent in to Sheerness a Dutch East Indiaman.

23 Nov 1832 remains at Deal.

28 Nov 1832 the Vernon with the Stag, Volage, Scout, Larne, Rover, Snake, and steamer Dee, along with 5 French vessels, are reported to be cruising off the Dutch ports, from Walcheren to the Texel.

16 Dec 1832 arrived in the Downs from the North Sea with the French vessel Créole and anchored.

26 Dec 1832 departed the Downs for Sheerness.

15 Jan 1833 arrived at the Downs from the River, and departed for Plymouth on her way to the Mediterranean.

27 Jan 1833 has detained and sent into Plymouth a number of Dutch vessels.

27 Jan 1833 Has detained and sent into Plymouth the Johan Arnoldus, and Minerva, from Batavia.

20 Feb 1833 Saved the crew of the Erin, ashore on the east end of the Plymouth Breakwater.

18 Mar 1833 arrived Malta from England departed the following day for Alexandria.

8 Jun 1833 Awaiting at Malta the arrival of the Flag Officer.

17 Dec 1833 arrived Portsmouth from Malta (23 Nov), to be docked, having touched on the shoals coming out of the harbour of Alexandria : departed for Sheerness.

22 Dec 1833 Passed through Deal from Portsmouth for the River.

4 Jan 1834 Fitting out at Sheerness.

19 Mar 1834 Has arrived Malta from Sheerness.

23 Mar 1834 at Tripoli.

1 Aug 1834 at Tripoli.

26 Aug 1834 departed Malta for England.

18 Sep 1834 arrived Plymouth Sound from Malta, to refit.

2 Oct 1834 Paid off at Plymouth.

9 Oct 1834 Is fitting for commission.

20 Nov 1834 has been commissioned at Plymouth.

12 Mar 1835 has moved out to Plymouth Sound in preparation for her passage to South America, and is due to sail on Saturday.

14 May 1835 arrived Rio de Janeiro from Plymouth.

30 Oct 1835 is reported to have been at Bahia on 19 Aug.

14 Oct 1835 departed Rio de Janeiro for the Pacific.

28 Dec 1835 it was reported from Rio de Janeiro to have departed for Cape Horn and the Pacific station.

13 Apr 1836 was reported to have arrived Rio de Janeiro from the Pacific and was expected to return to Valparaiso in the near future.

8 May 1836 reported to be at Rio de Janeiro.

9 Jul 1836 a court martial was held on board the Britannia at Portsmouth to try Mr Robert Rogers, late Master of the Rover, of indecent assault. Mr Rogers was acquitted and the witnesses, W. Tully, cook ; Rowett, a boy ; and Henry Benjamin, joiner, were taken into custody on suspicion of conspiracy.

1 Sep 1836 departed Valparaiso 30 Aug for Talcahuano, where there appears to be a little local difficulty.

24 Apr 1837 is reported to be off the coasts of Mexico and California.

6 May 1837 was reported to be at San Blas and to be sailing shortly for Valparaiso.

11 Apr 1838 detained the Portuguese slave schooner Flor de Loanda, off Rio de Janeiro, with 289 slaves on board, which was sent for adjudication to the British and Brazilian Mixed Court of Commission, Rio de Janeiro, which, on 15 May 1838 decided it was not competent to try the case : 53 Negroes subsequently died on board vessels in the harbour at Rio.

13 Apr 1838 detained in off the Marica Islands, her crew having deserted the vessel in the ship's boats for shore, the Brazilian slave brigantine Cesar, with 207 slaves on board, which was sent for adjudication to the British and Brazilian Mixed Court of Commission, Rio de Janeiro, and on 26 May 1838 sentenced to be forfeited.

1838-39, part of a squadron looking after British interests on the coast of Mexico. See p. 305 at

8 Feb 1839 in a letter from M. de Carvalho, the Portuguese Chargé d'Affaires, to Lord Palmerston, then Foreign Minister, M. de Carvalho observes that that it is the intention of the Lords of the Admiralty that Mr. Armitage, a mate of Her Britannic Majesty's ship Rover, intrusted with the charge of the slave schooner "Flor de Loanda," and of the persons belonging to that vessel, who have recently arrived in England, has been promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, as a mark of the satisfaction with which Her Britannic Majesty's Government have viewed the proceedings of the "Rover," [which I would guess had the probable desired effect of upsetting the Portuguese establishment, many of whom in influential positions, at least at that time, would have preferred not to have got involved with Great Britain in the fight against the Slave Trade...and one only has to look at what was going on in the Portuguese colonies to see that little or no attempt was being made to control the Slave Trade, in fact quite to the contrary. And to put it in a current context, it was politically inconvenient, and lost votes for any party that supported the fight against the Slave Trade, much as would appear to be the situation in some African countries today !]

17 Mar 1840 H.M. Commissioners at Havana report that a Spanish slave vessel, Name Unknown, near Guanimar, off the coast of Cuba, had fired into one of the Rover's boats, wounding an officer and 6 men before escaping the scene, the vessel being found abandoned further along the coast. The Pickle subsequently visited the vessel some weeks later, but finding it now in the hands of the Cuban authorities, who were supposedly investigating the matter, the vessel was left where she was. Following the return of the boat the Rover departed for Jamaica and reported the outrage to the Commodore who took statement from the men, the officer still be too ill. The Rover then came to Havana, where the captain, Commander Symonds reported the matter to Mr. Tolmé, who then wrote to the Captain-General on the subject. After a brief stay of 24 hours the Rover departed for Vera Cruz. It was later divulged that the Cuban authorities had sold the vessel, presumably with a view to it being taken out of the reach of the British, following which the Commissioners were informed that the British Admiral of the station, Sir T. Hardy, for some strange reason, had instructed Mr. Tolmé to drop all further proceedings on the matter. This being the case the Commissioners felt that since the matter had been taken out of their hands, with the boat being sold and the Admiral wishing to turn the other cheek or a blind eye, and perhaps giving other slave traders the green light that they too might also attempt the same action, if they think they can get away with it, their only alternative was to pass the matter to a higher authority, namely to Viscount Palmerston at the Foreign Office ? It should perhaps not be forgotten that had the Rover managed to detain the unknown slave vessel she would have been brought to Havana for the Commissioners to adjudicate, and if found guilty, to emancipate the slaves that were reputed to be on board and dispose of the vessel in accordance with the Treaty with Spain. One wonders if the departure of David Tolmé to England in 1840 might have had something to do with this case, in that he failed to keep the Commissioners informed regarding the correspondence he was having with the Captain-General and other parties, excusing himself on the grounds that no one had told him that the Spanish vessel involved was probably a slave trader, an officer and men involved in the incident having stated that they saw black faces on board during the shooting which could only have belonged to slaves ?

28 Aug 1840 at Jamaica.

25 Sep 1840 left Barbadoes for Jamaica.

26 Oct 1840 arrived at Halifax from Jamaica with rank and file of the 64th Regt.

1 Jan 1841 at Havannah.

20 Mar 1841 Commander Keele, appointed to the Rover ;

3 Jul 1841 departed Carlisle Bay, for Para.

1 Nov 1841 remained at Barbadoes when the packet Pandora departed for England.

26 Nov 1841 departed Barbadoes, for Bermuda.

1 Nov 1841 was reported to be at Barbadoes when the packet Pandora called : Assistant Surgeon Mr. Lear is reported to have died, the West Indies being reported to be very unhealthy..

26 Nov 1841 departed Barbadoes for Bermuda.

7 Feb 1842 due to depart Bermuda for Jamaica with the Spartan and Illustrious, per the Winchester, departed Bermuda 4th inst.

28 Feb 1842 departed Barbadoes for Antigua.

17 Apr 1842 was at Jamaica.

4 May 1842 arrived Jamaica from Granada.

C 8 May 1842 was at Barbadoes when the Pique departed for England.

5 Jun 1842 departed Jamaica for Honduras.

C 9 Aug 1842 stationed in the Gulf [of Mexico].

24 Aug 1842 at Honduras.

12 Oct 1842 arrived Quebec with specie for the commissariat.

13 Oct 1842 departed Quebec for Bermuda, passing Halifax on 2 Nov.

16 Nov 1842 at Bermuda.

1 Dec 1842 at Bermuda.