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Nimble (1786 ship)

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History
Great Britain
NameNimble
Launched1781
FateSold 1804
General characteristics
Tons burthen
  • 1786:180
  • 1786:229,[1] or 231 (bm)
Complement
Armament
  • 1795:8 × 3&4-pounder guns[1]
  • 1799:18 × 4&6&12-pounder guns[1]
  • 1800:18 × 6&12-pounder guns[1]

Nimble was built in Folkestone in 1781, possibly under another name. In 1786 Nimble was almost rebuilt and lengthened. Between 1786 and 1798 she made nine voyages as a whaler in the British Southern Whale Fishery. Between 1799 and 1804 she made four voyages from Liverpool as a slave ship. On her first voyage as a slave ship she detained a neutral vessel, an action that resulted in a court case. On her second slave-trading voyage a French privateer captured her, but the Royal Navy recaptured her. She was sold in 1804 at St Thomas after she had delivered her slaves.

Career

Nimble first appeared in Lloyd's Register (LR) in 1786.[2] Her career before then is currently obscure.

Year Master Owner Trade Source & notes
1786 Gardner Montgomery London–Southern Fishery LR

1st whaling voyage (1786): Captain Francis Gardner sailed in 1786 for the Brazil Banks. Nimble arrived in the Downs on 5 July 1786 from the Brazils.

2nd whaling voyage (1787): Captain Gardner gathered 30 tuns of sperm oil, 16 tuns of whale oil, 10 cwt of whale bone.[3] In April 1787 Nimble, Gardiner, master, was reported at Trinidade with 30 tons of sperm oil and 20 tons of "black oil".[4]

3rd whaling voyage (1788): Captain Gardner gathered 51 tuns of sperm oil.[3] Nimble, Gardner, master, arrived back at the Downs on 21 July 1788.

4th whaling voyage (1789): Captain Gardner was reported to have been at 5°S 8°E / 5°S 8°E / -5; 8 (about 270 miles west of Pointe-Noire), with about 250 barrels of sperm oil. Nimble returned to Gravesend on 3 October 1789 with 25 tuns of sperm oil, 70 tuns of whale oil, and 42 cwt of whale bone.[3]

5th whaling voyage (1790–1791): Captain Gardner sailed Nimble in late 1789 or early 1790. Lloyd's List reported on 22 January 1790 that Nimble, Gardner, master, was on shore at Leigh (possibly Leigh-on-Sea), while on her way to the South Fishery.[5] She was gotten off with little damage and returned to Gravesend.[6] On 27 February 1790 she was at the Downs on her way to the South Seas. She returned to Gravesend on 16 February 1791.[3]

6th whaling voyage (1791–1792): Captain Gardner sailed on 28 May 1791. Nimble returned on 27 July 1792.[3]

It is not clear where Nimble was between late 1792 and mid-1795. The data in LR was unchanged from 1792 to 1794.

Year Master Owner Trade Source
1795 Dickon A.Gibbon London–South Seas LR; raised and almost rebuilt 1786, & good repair 1795.

7th whaling voyage (1795–1796): Captain Christopher Dickson acquired a letter of marque on 7 July 1795.[1] At some point thereafter Dickson (or Dixon) sailed for the Brazil Banks. Nimble returned to Britain on 19 April 1796 with 111 tuns of whale oil and 80cwt of whale bone.[3]

Year Master Owner Trade Source
1796 Richardson
Barton
A.Gibbon London–South Seas LR; raised and almost rebuilt 1786, & good repair 1795.

8th whaling voyage (1796–1797): Captain Richardson sailed from London on 10 June 1796. A Nimble, Hook, master, was reported off Brazil in January 1797. Nimble, Maddick, master, returned to Gravesend from the South Seas on 28 April.[3]

9th whaling voyage (1797–1798): Captain Holland Barton sailed from Deal, bound for the South Seas via Portsmouth, on 17 August 1797. Nimble, Barton, master, returned to Gravesend from the South Seas on 21 October 1798.[3]

Year Master Owner Trade Source & notes
1799 H.Burton
J.Blake
A.Gibbon
Illegible
London–Southern Fishery
Liverpool–Africa
LR; raised and almost rebuilt 1786, & good repair 1795.

The changed data in the online copy of LR for 1799 was hand-written, in ink, in a 18th/19th century style.[7] Immediately subsequent issues of LR and the Register of Shipping showed Nimble still sailing to the South Seas. This led at least one source to show her still engaged in whaling.[8] However, ownership had changed to Liverpool and she had become a slave ship.

1st slave voyage (1799–1800): Captain James Blake acquired a letter of marque on 12 March 1799.[1] In March, off Cape Finisterre, Blake stopped the Danish brig Rebecca by firing a warning shot and then ramming into her, putting his own men aboard. He held the Captain Brunn, and a passenger overnight on Nimble and then let them return to Rebecca as Rebecca's papers were in order, proving her a neutral. On his return, Captain Brunn discovered that Blake and his men had vandalized Rebecca, and made off with portable valuables and a sack of silver. Brunn sued Blake before the King's Bench, but on 18 December 1801 the judge dismissed the suit on the grounds that there had been no personal injury; the jury agreed. The judge did suggest that Captain Brunn would receive redress in the Admiralty Court.[9]

On 4 April 1799 Captain Blake sailed from Liverpool, bound for Cabinda. Nimble arrived at Kingston, Jamaica with 358 slaves, having embarked 366. She sailed from Kingston on 15 February 1800 and arrived back at Liverpool on 29 April. She had left Liverpool with 36 crew members and she suffered four crew deaths on her voyage.[10]

2nd slave voyage (1800–1801): Captain Thomas Nuttall acquired a letter of marque on 13 June 1800. He sailed from Liverpool on 24 July. Nimble arrived in Demerara on 6 January 1801.[11]

In May Lloyd's List reported that the French privateer Braave had captured Nimble, Nuttell, master, as she was sailing from Demerara to Liverpool. HMS Révolutionnaire recaptured Nimble and Marina, another vessel that Braave had also taken.[12][13]

Nimble arrived back in Liverpool on 23 May. She had left Liverpool with 33 crew members and suffered four crew deaths on the voyage.[11]

3rd slave voyage (1801–1802): Captain Hugh Bowland sailed from Liverpool on 18 December 1801. Nimble gathered her slaves on the Windward Coast (AssiniNunez). She arrived at Tortola with 226 slaves on 2 August 1802. She delivered some slaves there and others at St Thomas. She sailed for Liverpool on 9 September and arrived there on 20 October. She had left Liverpool with 26 crew members and she suffered no crew deaths on the voyage.[14]

Year Master Owner Trade Source
1803 T.Chamley
T.Bridge
G.Cafe (or G.Case) Liverpool–Africa LR; raised and almost rebuilt 1786, good repair 1795, large repair 1803

4th slave voyage (1803–1804): Captain Thomas Bridge sailed from Liverpool on 26 May 1803, bound for Africa. Nimble arrived in St Thomas on 27 July 1804 with 257 slaves.[15]

Discover more about Career related topics

Lloyd's Register

Lloyd's Register

Lloyd's Register Group Limited (LR) is a technical and professional services organisation and a maritime classification society, wholly owned by the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, a UK charity dedicated to research and education in science and engineering. The organisation dates to 1760. Its stated aims are to enhance the safety of life, property, and the environment, by helping its clients to improve the safety and performance of complex projects, supply chains and critical infrastructure.

The Downs (ship anchorage)

The Downs (ship anchorage)

The Downs is a roadstead in the southern North Sea near the English Channel off the east Kent coast, between the North and the South Foreland in southern England. In 1639 the Battle of the Downs took place here, when the Dutch navy destroyed a Spanish fleet which had sought refuge in neutral English waters. From the Elizabethan era onwards, the presence of the Downs helped to make Deal one of the premier ports in England, and in the 19th century, it was equipped with its own telegraph and timeball tower to enable ships to set their marine chronometers.

Sperm oil

Sperm oil

Sperm oil is a waxy liquid obtained from sperm whales. It is a clear, yellowish liquid with a very faint odor. Sperm oil has a different composition from common whale oil, obtained from rendered blubber. Although it is traditionally called an "oil", it is technically a liquid wax. It is composed of wax esters with a small proportion of triglycerides, an ester of an unsaturated fatty acid, and a branched-chain fatty alcohol. It is a natural antioxidant and heat-transfer agent. In the late-18th and early-19th centuries, sperm oil was prized as an illuminant for its bright, odorless flame and as a lubricant for its low viscosity and stability. It was supplanted in the late 19th century by less expensive alternatives such as kerosene and petroleum-based lubricants. With the 1987 international ban on whaling, sperm oil is no longer legally sold.

Pointe-Noire

Pointe-Noire

Pointe-Noire is the second largest city in the Republic of the Congo, following the capital of Brazzaville, and an autonomous department since 2004. Before this date it was the capital of the Kouilou region. It is situated on a headland between Pointe-Noire Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. Pointe-Noire is the main commercial centre of the country and has a population of 715,334 (2007), expanding to well over 1 million when the entire metropolitan area is taken into account.

Hundredweight

Hundredweight

The hundredweight, formerly also known as the centum weight or quintal, is a British imperial and US customary unit of weight or mass. Its value differs between the US and British imperial systems. The two values are distinguished in American English as the "short" and "long" hundredweight and in British English as the "cental" and the "imperial hundredweight".The short hundredweight or cental of 100 pounds (45.36 kg) is used in the United States. The long or imperial hundredweight of 8 stone or 112 pounds (50.80 kg) is defined in the imperial system.

Baleen

Baleen

Baleen is a filter-feeding system inside the mouths of baleen whales. To use baleen, the whale first opens its mouth underwater to take in water. The whale then pushes the water out, and animals such as krill are filtered by the baleen and remain as a food source for the whale. Baleen is similar to bristles and consists of keratin, the same substance found in human fingernails, skin and hair. Baleen is a skin derivative. Some whales, such as the bowhead whale, have longer baleen than others. Other whales, such as the gray whale, only use one side of their baleen. These baleen bristles are arranged in plates across the upper jaw of whales.

Lloyd's List

Lloyd's List

Lloyd's List is one of the world's oldest continuously running journals, having provided weekly shipping news in London as early as 1734. It was published daily until 2013, and is in constantly updated digital format only since then.

Leigh-on-Sea

Leigh-on-Sea

Leigh-on-Sea, commonly referred to simply as Leigh, is a town and civil parish in the City of Southend-on-Sea, in the ceremonial county of Essex, England. In 2011, it had a population of 22,509.

Letter of marque

Letter of marque

A letter of marque and reprisal was a government license in the Age of Sail that authorized a private person, known as a privateer or corsair, to attack and capture vessels of a nation at war with the issuer. After capturing, the privateers could bring the case of that prize before their own admiralty court for condemnation and transfer of ownership to the privateer. A letter of marque and reprisal would include permission to cross an international border to conduct a reprisal and was authorized by an issuing jurisdiction to conduct reprisal operations outside its borders.

HMS Révolutionnaire (1794)

HMS Révolutionnaire (1794)

Révolutionnaire, was a 40-gun Seine-class frigate of the French Navy, launched in May 1794. The British captured her in October 1794 and she went on to serve with the Royal Navy until she was broken up in 1822. During this service Revolutionnaire took part in numerous actions, including three for which the Admiralty would in 1847 award clasps to the Naval General Service Medal, and captured several privateers and merchant vessels.

Assinie-Mafia

Assinie-Mafia

Assinie-Mafia is a coastal resort town in south-eastern Ivory Coast. It is a sub-prefecture of Adiaké Department in Sud-Comoé Region, Comoé District.

Nunez River

Nunez River

Nunez River or Rio Nuñez (Kakandé) is a river in Guinea with its source in the Futa Jallon highlands. It is also known as the Tinguilinta River, after a village along its upper course.

Fate

In September 1804 Lloyd's List reported that Nimble, Bridges, master, had arrived at St Thomas's from Africa and had been sold there.[16]

Source: "Nimble (1786 ship)", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2022, November 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nimble_(1786_ship).

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Citations
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Letter of Marque, p.80 - accessed 25 July 2017" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 October 2016. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  2. ^ LR (1786), Seq.No.N07.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h British Southern Whale Fishery – Voyages: Nimble.
  4. ^ "The Marine List". Lloyd's List. No. 1882. 18 May 1787. hdl:2027/uc1.c3049064.
  5. ^ "The Marine List". Lloyd's List. No. 2162. 22 January 1790. hdl:2027/uc1.c3049065.
  6. ^ "The Marine List". Lloyd's List. No. 2163. 26 January 1790. hdl:2027/uc1.c3049065.
  7. ^ LR (1799), Seq.No.168.
  8. ^ Clayton (2014), p. 182.
  9. ^ "Law Intelligence" (19 December 1801) Morning Post (London, England) issue: 10360.
  10. ^ Trans Atlantic Slave Trade Database – Nimble voyage #82946.
  11. ^ a b Trans Atlantic Slave Trade Database – Nimble voyage #82947.
  12. ^ "The Marine List". Lloyd's List. No. 4150. 12 May 1801. hdl:2027/uc1.c2735020.
  13. ^ "No. 15383". The London Gazette. 7 July 1801. p. 781.
  14. ^ Trans Atlantic Slave Trade Database – Nimble voyage #82948.
  15. ^ Trans Atlantic Slave Trade Database – Nimble voyage #82949.
  16. ^ "The Marine List". Lloyd's List. No. 4489. 18 September 1804. hdl:2027/uc1.c2735021.
References
  • Clayton, Jane M (2014). Ships employed in the South Sea Whale Fishery from Britain: 1775–1815: An alphabetical list of ships. Berforts Group. ISBN 9781908616524.

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