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PORTLAND (50) 4th rate Built in 1744, Limehouse.
Sold in 1765.

  • 1744 Capt. Charles STEVENS, promoted out of LUDLOW CASTLE in September, and employed as a cruiser. In February 1746 he fell in with and captured a French ship of war:-
  • "On the 9th. instant, at four in the afternoon, Scilly bearing N. by W. distance twenty-seven leagues, in the latitude of 49.00.N. with his majesty's ship Portland under my command, I engaged the August, a French ship of war of fifty guns and four hundred and seventy men. After two and a half hours of close action she struck, having had fifty men killed and ninety-four wounded, all her masts shattered that they went by the board and so many shot in the hull, that, with the late hard easterly wind, I was obliged to put away with her before it one hundred leagues to the westward, and am now towing her for Plymouth, Scilly bearing E. N.E. ninety-five leagues. My officers and men behaved with the bravest gallantry, and were greatly rejoiced to have met so equal a force, to try the strength of his majesty's arms. We have lost three seamen and two marines killed, with seven seamen and six marines wounded, my standing and running rigging almost shot away; standing-mast and fore-top-mast wounded, but not disabled; main-yard quite destroyed. I am now making another, and as the wind is now setting in westerly, I hope soon to add to his majesty's fleet a new ship which sails very well.
  • I am & c.
  • Quoting from another letter from onboard PORTLAND:-
  • "A woman on board the August behaved most heroically, for though the men, in several instances ran from their guns, she, displaying the contrary spirit, continued to fight, and actually, discharged her musket six times after she was wounded."
  • And yet another letter.
  • The 26th. February, a 50 gun French man of war, which had 449 men when she came out of Brest, which was about three weeks before, bore down upon us within pistol-shot, and immediately hoisted French colours, we as quickly answered them; our engagement lasted two hours and a half, yard-arm and yard-arm, when we shot away the Frenchman's foremast and mainmast by the board, and otherwise very much shatter'd her; we were likewise very much damaged in our rigging; but at length they struck, and our first lieutenant went on board them, and brought their principal officers on board our ship. who told us. that they had fifty kill'd, and about hundred wounded; but we happened to have only five kill'd, and fourteen wounded.
  • Capt. STEVENS brought AUGUSTE safely into Plymouth and she was taken into the Royal Navy as PORTLAND PRIZE. For his gallant behaviour during the action, Lieut. YOUNG of PORTLAND was promoted to command the AMAZON of 20 guns.

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