HMS Orion (1787)
Model of HMS Orion at the Vancouver Maritime Museum
|Ordered:||2 October 1782|
|Laid down:||February 1783|
|Launched:||1 June 1787|
|Fate:||Broken up, 1814|
|General characteristics |
|Class and type:||Canada class ship of the line|
|Tons burthen:||1646 (bm)|
|Length:||170 ft (52 m) (gundeck)|
|Beam:||46 ft 9 in (14.25 m)|
|Depth of hold:||20 ft 6 in (6.25 m)|
|Sail plan:||Full rigged ship|
|Armament:||Gundeck: 28 × 32-pounder guns
Upper gundeck: 28 × 18-pounder guns
HMS Orion was a 74-gun third rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched at Deptford on 1 June 1787 to the design of the Canada-class, by William Bately. She took part in all the major actions of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars under a series of distinguished captains.
In early 1797 she was sent to join the Mediterranean Fleet and distinguished herself at the Battle of Cape St. Vincent on 14 February. She then took part in the blockade of Cadiz from March 1797 to April 1798, when she was sent into the Mediterranean as part of a small squadron under the command of Rear-Admiral Horatio Nelson. In August, Nelson finally caught up with the French fleet, resulting in the Battle of the Nile, where Captain Saumarez was wounded.
Between 31st March 1801 and 10th July 1802 the Surgeon's First Mate on board the Orion was Henry Plowman. On 15th Jan 1802 whilst still on board the Orion (which was anchored at Spithead and under the command of R Cuthbert) Henry Plowman wrote his will which is signed by the Captain.
After Trafalgar, Orion continued in the blockade of Cadiz. On 25 November, Thunderer detained the Ragusan ship Nemesis, which was sailing from Isle de France to Leghorn, Italy, with a cargo of spice, indigo dye, and other goods. Orion shared the prize money with ten other British warships.
Orion was broken up in 1814.
- Will of henry Plowman Surgeon's First Mate 15 Jan 1802
- Lavery, Brian (2003) The Ship of the Line - Volume 1: The development of the battlefleet 1650-1850. Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-252-8.
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