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FURNACE (14) Bomb Built in 1740, Rotherhithe.
Sold in 1783.

  • Launched on 25 October.
  • 1741 Cdr. PHILPOT, Yarmouth in February. 1741 Cdr. Charles MIDDLETON, in Galleon's Reach in May he requested help from Deptford to pick up provisions for his ship and the DISCOVERY pink which had joined him. At the Nore in June he was still waiting for stores, and to be paid, before sailing for Leith. He was about to set out to attempt to discover a North-West Passage to the East Indies.
  • "On the 27th. June we left the Orkneys . The 16th. July we made Cape Farewell, about 446 Leagues to the Westward, and about 4 or 5 Leagues distant to us. The land, which was rocky and high, was covered with Snow. The 20th. July we made the Island of Resolution, which makes one side of the Strait's Mouth; and here we were in much danger, on Account of the thick Fogs, being close upon the Land before we could perceive it, and having a Fresh of Wind right in upon the Shore. In the straits we met a great many Islands of Ice, some of them 50 Fathoms perpendicular above Water, and three Times as much under; these Islands make Yearly from the Northward away to the Southward, where they melt and decay...
  • On the 7th. August made the Land about Churchill's River, which lies in 59.10 N. Latitude and Longitude from London above 83 Deg.W. On the 8th. we got into the River's Mouth, where we moor'd Ship. Here is an English Settlement, or Factory, belonging to the Hudson's Bay Company, with a strong fort, where we resolved to winter, seeing the season was then too far spent for proceeding on our intended Discovery.
  • The winter sets in here about the beginning of Sept. and continues till June, during which the Ground is covered with Snow and Ice. It generally freezes to such a Degree that no Man whatever is able to face the Weather with any Part of his Body naked or exposed, but in the shortest Space of Time he is froze. Several of our Men have lost their Toes and Fingers. Our Cloathing is a Beaver or Skin tuggy, above our other Cloaths. Shoes of Deer-Skin, with three or four socks of thick Blanketting or warm Cloth above our Stockings, Mittens of Beaver lined with Duffeld or thick Cloth; and a Beaver Cap with a Chin Cloth which cover the greatest Part of the Face.
  • There is no Disease or Distemper prevails here, unless it be the Scurvy, of which we have lost ten of our best Seamen; there are great Plenty of Partridges in the Winter time and a vast flight of Wild Geese in the fall of the Spring. We have had no less than 6000 geese killed this spring, by about 20 Indians.
  • The 1st. June the River broke up, and a few days after we got the Ships out into the Stream, after two Months unspeakable Toil in cutting them clear of the Ice; and now we have got all Things ready for Sea, and full of Hope of Success.
  • The 1st. Day of July we set out from Churchill Port and on the 8th. we enter'd Sir Tho. Roe's Welcome, which is about 14 Leagues across. On the 9th. we fell in with a vast body of broken Ice, in which we were inveigled three days. Several Indians came off in their canoes and brought us some whale bone and train oil, which they gave us for little Bits of Iron, of which they are wonderfully fond. On the 4th. Aug. we left the River and stood away to the Northward with a fair Prospect of the Land on each Side. But afterwards we found it to be nothing but Bay Land all round. We therfore concluded that there was no such thing as a passage into the Western Ocean. The 15th. took our Farewell of the Bay, the 20th. we made the Head of the Strait; in the Passage from the Sraits we had very strong Gales, tho' pretty fair. The 15th. Sept. we came in a Hoy Sound, and anchor'd in Stormness Harbour. Never were Ships worse manned; seceralof our men are dead in the Country, the one half of the remainder so taken with the Scurvy, that they have been uncapable of doing Duty."
  • 1744 Cdr. George Bridges RODNEY, Sheerness. 1745 Cdr. FERGUSON.
  • 1747 In January FURNACE brought into Dover a French privateer from Boulogne with five carriage, five swivel guns and 51 men.
  • 1757 Cdr. MIDDLLETON, in March she was docked at Portsmouth to stop a leak.
  • 1761 Cdr. James CHAPLEN, with Commodore KEPPEL in the expedition against Belle Isle.
  • Extract of a letter from commodore Keppel, to Mr. Clevland, dated in Belleisle road, the 28th. of July 1761.
  • " I yesterday received letters from sir Thomas Stanhope in Basque road, extracts of which I here enclose you. The enemy's second attempt to remove the ships attending the demolition of the works of Aix has been as ineffectual and disgraceful to them as their first was. The indefatigable pains and skilful manner in which captain Chaplen, of the Furnace bomb, has directed the destroying the enemy's fortifications and works upon the island, has been such, that it would be an injustice in me not to acquaint their lordships of it."

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