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FISGARD (44) The French LA RESISTANCE taken, with CONSTANCE, by SAN FIORENZO and NYMPHE off Brest on 9 March 1797.
Sold in 1814.

  • Capt. T. Byam MARTIN, 12/1797. Channel.
    On 8 March 1799 men wounded by lightning on board her were taken into the Royal Naval Hospital at Plymouth, one seaman was struck dumb, deaf and blind and it was feared that he would lose his reason.
    On 18 December 1799 FISGARD, ETHALION and SYLPH, maintaining the line of cruisers off Ushant blown off shore during a gale. ETHALION was the first to regain her station but was wrecked on the Saintes on the 25th.
  • On 4 January 1800 Capt. MARTIN brought into Plymouth Capt. SEARLE, Lieut. PYM and other officers and men from the ETHALION.
    FISGARD sailed on a cruise to the westward on 20 March and on 16 April the owners of the American ship MINERVA, which had been captured by the French privateer MARS while on passage from London to Boston and retaken by FISGARD the following day, agreed a one-eighth salvage on 60,000 for the ship and cargo.
    When MINERVA arrived in Plymouth on 6 April she was rumoured to be worth 100,000 pounds. MARS was taken by AMETHYST.
  • On 12 May the DRAGON, a 14-gun French national corvette, taken by FISGARD and CAMBRIAN arrived in Plymouth. During the night of 16 May it blew a hurricane from the S. W. which lasted until the following morning when it shifted to the N. W. before abating. FISGARD, anchored in the Sound, parted her cables and finished up under Withy Hedge with NYMPHE. She brought up safely using her best bower anchor.
  • Two boats from each of the ships of Sir John WARREN's squadron, FISGARD, RENOWN, DEFENCE and UNICORN, under the direction of Capt. MARTIN, attacked a convoy laying at St. Croix during the night of 10 June.
    Lieuts. GREEN and GERRARD commanded the FISGARD boats with Mr FLEMING, mate. Because of an unfavourable wind the boats did not reach their objective until after daybreak but, under fire from a battery, three armed vessels and musketry from the shore, they took the NOCHETTE gun boat with two 24-pounders, two chasse-maree of six and ten guns, and eight others laden with wine, brandy, flour and peas for the fleet at Brest.
    Twenty other vessels were run on to the rocks. Thomas HALL, Quarter-Master; William JONES, marine, and Robert RICHARDSON, seaman, of FISGARD were wounded. The prizes were brought into Plymouth by UNICORN on the 18th. One of the brigs foundered but the crew were saved.
  • When a small squadron of enemy vessels was sighted in the mouth of the Quimper River on 22 June three boats from FISGARD, RENOWN and DEFENCE were sent in under the direction of Capt. MARTIN to destroy them. When they arrived off the entrance at daylight on the 23rd. marines were landed in two divisions, one under Lieut. GERRARD of FISGARD on the left bank and the other on the right under Lieut. BURKE of RENOWN.
    When the boats found that the enemy vessels, a 28-gun frigate, a brig, a lugger and a cutter, escorting seven merchant ships, had moved too far up the river, they landed and blew up a battery with several 24-pounders. Two other strong points were also destroyed.
    (At the end of 1801 on the occasion of his leaving the ship, a presentation of a sabre and belt was made to Lieut. GERRARD as testimony to his gallant and meritorious conduct in the three years he had served in FISGARD.)
  • Boats from the same three ships were used on the evening of 1 July to attack armed vessels and a large convoy lying within the island of Noirmoutier in Bourneuf Bay to the south of St. Nazaire, where they had been assembling from Sable D'Olonne before sailing to Brest. Although the enemy were under the protection of heavy batteries, a 20-gun ship, TERESE, four armed vessels and fifteen merchantmen were taken and burnt. Unfortunately the boats grounded as they tried to return over the sands and they were soon high and dry. Under fire from the forts and French soldiers the attacking party captured another enemy vessel and dragged it two miles over the sands until it floated and they were able to return to the squadron. Four officers and 88 men were taken prisoner including two seamen from FISGARD.
  • Between 20 July and 4 August Capt. MARTIN burnt a Spanish lugger, the ST. JOHN BAPTISTE; captured a French privateer LA GIRONDE (16), which had on board 53 English prisoners, and the privateer ALERT (14) which was cruising to intercept the home-bound West Indies convoy.
    He also recaptured the JOSEPH, Humphries, laded with skins and oil, which had been taken by the French privateer MINERVE. The ALERT was brought into Plymouth by her prize master, Mr W. PRING on 16 August.
    GIRONDE arrived the same day. Mr PRING sailed in SIRIUS on the 23rd. to rejoin the squadron off Corunna.
    (The vessels captured by LA GIRONDE were SWAN, Andrew Miller, with wine from Oporto; COUNTESS OF LAUDERDALE, Thomas Bennett, with sugar and cotton from Demerara; ACTIVE, Benj. Tucker, sugar and cotton from Bermuda; YOUNG WILLIAM, Chas. Baker, whale oil from the South seas. ACTIVE and WILLIAM were later recaptured and taken into Cork.)
  • While escorting a convoy on 30 September 1800 FISGARD gave chase to a Spanish brig of war EL VINO of fourteen 18-pounder carronades and 100 men.
    Two days out of Ferrol she was bound for America with dispatches which were thrown overboard before she was captured.
    The prize arrived in Plymouth on 11 November.
    On 22 October CLYDE towed into Plymouth the wreck of the Guineaman DICK which had just been taken by the French privateer GRANDE DECIDE (18) when FISGARD and CLYDE hove in sight.
    FISGARD went in chase of the privateer and captured her after about two hours.
  • FISGARD and INDEFATIGABLE captured the French national 32-gun frigate VENUS on 23 October. She was bound for Senegal from Rochefort with dispatches and a valuable cargo.
    INEFATIGABLE had been chasing her for some hours when FISGARD came in sight ahead of the enemy and turned her.
    VENUS arrived in Plymouth on the morning of 1 November and FISGARD came in the afternoon after a successful cruise off the coast of Spain lasting 13 weeks. She sailed again a W. N.W.
    wind on 29 November to return to her station.
  • FISGARD assisted the damaged CAPTAIN (74) Capt. STRACHAN, from the Black Rocks into the Sound on 11 January 1801, CAPTAIN fired distress guns until she got into the Narrows when all the boats of the yard and the fleet came to help her into the Hamoaze. She had use her pumps all the way from the French coast.
    FISGARD sailed again the same day for her station off Ushant.
  • On 28 January 1801 letters from FISGARD reported that on the 23rd. a gale had blown the blockading fleet off the coast and a French squadron had escaped through the Passage du Raz. She returned to Plymouth on 23 February after a three month cruise off the coast of France.
    FISGARD came out of harbour into the Sound again on 16 March and came under the orders of Ad. Sir H. HARVEY. She and IMMORTALITE sailed on a cruise on the 24th. FISGARD returned on 16 April to collect bullocks for the fleet; she sailed again the following day.
  • She was back in Plymouth on 27 June and on 7 July her boats went to the assistance of the AUGUSTA gunboat which, turning into the Sound from the Cattewater, missed stays and went on shore east of the two gun-batteries under the lower fort of the Citadel. In spite of their efforts she broke up during the night. The crew and part of the stores were saved.
    On the 12th. FISGARD sailed with live bullocks and 160 sacks of vegetables for the Channel fleet.
  • On the night of 20 August the boats of FISGARD, DIAMOND and BOADICEA, directed by Lieut. Philip PIPON of the former, attacked vessels lying in the harbour of Corunna. Although they were under the protection of strong batteries, and so near that sentries on the ramparts challenged the boats before opening fire with muskets, three vessels were brought out. NEPTUNO, a new national ship, pierced for 20 guns, a gunboat mounting one long 32-pounder and a merchant ship.
  • At the end of August FISGARD and BOADICEA cut out a Spanish packet under heavy fire from the guns of a battery in the inner harbour at Ferrol. The prize, which had been bound for Havana with dispatches, arrived in Plymouth on 3 September.
    FISGARD came in on 7 October and went directly into the Barnpool to overhaul her sails and rigging.
    On the 12th. her cutter, bringing fresh beef on board, was overturned in a sudden squall off Devil's Point and a midshipman and the crew were nearly drowned.
    They were towed ashore and the crew baled out the cutter and took the beef safely aboard.
  • FISGARD sailed on 28 November and returned on 14 December from Ad. MITCHELL's West Indies squadron in Bantry Bay with dispatches for the Admiralty after a passage of 48 hours.
  • Capt. SEYMOUR, 10/1802.
    FISGARD sailed again a snowstorm early in the morning of 17 December and was back in Plymouth again on the 29th. with more dispatches.
  • FISGARD and AMETHYST sailed on 27 January 1802 on a cruise against smugglers.
    A couple of days later FISGARD chased a smuggling cutter, the FLORA of Fowey, Capt. Dunn, into the arms of NYMPHE. FLORA surrendered when her shrouds became entangled with NYMPHE's bowsprit. She had on board a valuable cargo of dry goods and 944 ankers (a barrel containing just over 8 gallons) of brandy.
    Later the two frigates were driven into Torbay by gales from the south-west and returned to Plymouth on 6 February. They sailed again on the 9th. when the wind shifted to W. N.W.
    FISGARD returned on the 22nd in a hurricane from the south west and, two days later.
  • 1802 Capt. James WALLIS, 03/1802, late of ACHILLE, while Capt. SEYMOUR had leave of absence.
    FISGARD tried to leave the Sound on 1 March but had to put back due to contrary winds and it was not until the 4th. that she was able to sail on another anti-smuggling cruise. She was back again on the 28th., On 14 April she took marines to Portsmouth and, on 1 May, 150 discharged seamen to Ireland. She returned to Plymouth from Cork on the 17th.
  • On 3 August FISGARD was paid off all standing and immediately re-commissioned, the same officers being reappointed, but on the 9 September came the news that she was to be paid off in ordinary and that Capt. WALLIS and her ship's company were to commission NAIAD in her stead. A survey suggested that FISGARD was so leaky that she was not worth repairing but nevertheless she was handed over to the dockyard for an extensive refit.
  • She came out of dock at the beginning of September 1803 and her place was taken by ALBION.
  • Capt. Lord Mark Robert KERR was appointed to her and she went down from the Hamoaze into the Sound on the 13 September ready for sea.
    On the 19th. she was paid by Commissioner Fanshawe and on the evening of the 20st. she sailed with a convoy of coasters for the Thames. Sailing with her was the AMBUSCADE of London which had arrived in Plymouth the same morning from the coast of Africa with a valuable cargo of ivory and gold dust. FISGARD arrived at Portsmouth on the 21st.
  • In December she and ORPHEUS escorted the Quebec fleet from Oporto through the Channel on their way to the Downs. FISGARD went ashore near the Jack-in-a-Basket off Lymington and lay there for two days before getting off. Fortunately she was little damaged.
    On the 23rd. a telegraph from London announced that French troops had embarked along the coast so FISGARD with the other vessels in Portsmouth Harbour were ordered to drop down to St. Helen's to reinforce the fleet there.
  • In 1804 FISGARD was stationed off Cape St. Maria (70 miles east of Cape St. Vincent) and after Capt. KERR received news on 15 October of hostilities with Spain he captured a number of ships worth about 14,000 pounds, the most valuable being NOSRA SENORA DEL ROSARIO, ST. JOSEPH, APOLLO and SIGNORA DEL PURIFICATIONE. He joined Sir Richard STRACHAN in DONEGAL on 27 November and was sent in to Lisbon to complete fitting out.
  • On her return in December FISGARD captured the French letter of marque TIGRE fifty-six days into a passage from Cayenne to Cadiz. Formally the ANGOLA of Liverpool she was armed with twelve 18-pounder carronades and two brass guns. The master and crew of an English brig she had captured were found on board.
  • In April FISGARD, cruising off the Straits, discovered that the French fleet from Toulon, being sought by Lord NELSON, had passed into the Atlantic. Capt. KERR passed the news to Vice Ad. Sir George ORDE who sent the FELIX schooner to England.
  • 1806 Capt. William BOLTON.
  • On 19 October 1806 FISGARD sailed with a convoy from Cork to the West Indies.
    Capt. Chivers of the ship ARETHUSA of London refused to obey signals and Capt. BOLTON was forced to report him to the Admiralty. They instructed their solicitor to prosecute.
  • Capt. Francis MASON was appointed to temporary command of FISGARD off Flushing in October 1809 and took part in the evacuation of the rear guard of the army from Walcheren.
    The wind changed to the N. N.W. as his division was coming out on 26 December and they just made it into the Channel.
    Until the following spring Capt. MASON was senior officer off the Scheldt and during the summer FISGARD cruised in the Baltic. She captured the Danish privateer JULIANA, a French privateer and 56 merchant vessels.
    The Danish privateer ZISKA was destroyed.
    In the autumn Capt. MASON was confirmed in his command and in February 1811 FISGARD accompanied Sir Joseph YORKE's squadron to the Tagus.
  • She took a Portuguese Ambassador to Reveland took several prizes in the Gulf of Bothnia. During the night of 25 December 1811 FISGARD rescued the crew of a Danish galliot which had foundered in heavy seas off the coast of Norway. They had taken to a small boat but the wind was directly off the land and they would have soon perished if FISGARD had not passed within hailing distance for a brief five minutes.
  • FISGARD returned to England in January 1812 and, after a refit, cruised off Cherbourg until she was paid off in July 1812, completely worn out.


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