1805 - Captain Adam off Fécamp


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Naval History of Great Britain - Vol III
1805 Invasion Flotilla 307

Boulogne by Rear-admiral Lacrosse (since the death of Admiral Bruix, on the 19th of March, the commander-in-chief of the French flotilla), succeeded, after a while, in reaching Ambleteuse, the port of its destination.

On the 10th of June, at 7 a.m., a division of the French. flotilla, consisting of the two " corvettes-canonnières " Foudre, Capitaine de vaisseau Jacques-Felix-Emmanuel Hemelin, and Audacieuse, Lieutenant Dominique Roquebert, each mounting 10 guns (four or six long 18-pounders, the remainder brass 36-pounder carronades, with upwards of 80 men), four gun-vessels, of three long 24-pounders, and an 8-inch mortar each, three others of one 24-pounder and a field-piece each, eight others, of two 4 or 6 pounders, and 14 transports, in all 31 vessels, sailed from the port of Havre bound to Fécamp. By the time they had got abreast of Brunevel, the French vessels were chased by the British 12-pounder 36-gun frigate Chiffonne, Captain Charles Adam, who, with the ship-sloop Falcon, Captain George Sanders, gun-brig Clinker, Lieutenant Nisbet Glen, and the Frances hired armed cutter, was cruising off the coast.

At 9 h. 30 m. a.m. the Chiffonne, then in 10 fathoms' water considerably ahead of her companions, and close in with the flotilla opened her fire upon the van, where the Foudre had stationed herself ; but, in a quarter of an hour, shoaling her water, the frigate was compelled to haul further off. At 10h. 30 m. a.m. the frigate, followed by the sloop and gun-brig, recommenced firing. Shortly afterwards one of the French brigs caught fire, but succeeded in extinguishing it, and some of the other vessels ran on shore. Towards noon the Chiffonne, who had bore the brunt of this attack, again hauled out into deeper water. Shortly afterwards the van of the French flotilla ran close under the batteries of Cap-de-Caiset, until joined by the rearmost vessels, when they again bore up to proceed on their course. At 1 h. 30 m. p.m. the three British vessels again stood in, and at 2 p.m. recommenced firing. The Falcon presently became closely engaged with the two sternmost of the French brigs, one of which was the Audacieuse. As the British passed along the coast, the forts kept firing shells and shots at them without the smallest intermission : notwithstanding which the Chiffonne and Falcon continued the engagement, and at 3 h. 15 m. p.m. shot away a brig's fore topmast and then her mainmast. The Falcon and Clinker, not sailing by any means equal to the frigate, gradually dropped astern, and the flotilla sheltered themselves completely under Fécamp batteries ; but the latter did not until 4 h. 30 m. p.m. cease firing at the Chiffonne.

Several shot struck the Chiffonne in the hull, one of which entered between wind and water; and her rigging was also much cut. Her loss amounted to two men killed and three wounded. The Falcon suffered in rigging and sails, and had four men wounded ; the Clinker, one marine killed and one seaman

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