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Part of the
seainen reach the shore.
1810. the only lives lost on the occasion were two' solJuly, diers, and two of the Néréide's seamen, drowned.
Lieutenant-colonel Keating considering it indispen
sable that a disembarkation should be effected on troops this most difficult side of the capital, a light some transport brig, the Ulney, was run on shore as
a breakwater; but, the stern cable parting, she formed only a momentary cover for a few boats; and it was found necessary, at the close of day, to relinquish, for the present, any further attempts to land at this point.
The small detachment on shore, having lost a
great proportion of their arms, and had the whole of duct of their ammunition spoiled, were now rather critically apient circumstanced; especially as, on account of the bad army. state of the weather, no boat could push off to com
municate with the squadron. At length, a gallant young officer of the army, lieutenant Foulstone, who was on board the Boadicea, volunteered to swim through the surf and convey to lieutenant-colonel Macleod, the commanding officer of the detachment, colonel Keating's orders. He did so; and, the lieutenant-colonel took quiet possession of, and
occupied for the night, the fort of Sainte-Marie. Troops On the morning of the 8th, the beach still appearlanded ing unfavourable, the Boadicea, leaving behind the
Iphigenia and transports, proceeded to Grande
Chaloupe; where, at about II A. M., colonel Keating der the and the troops in the Boadicea disembarked. In
the course of the day captain Lambert succeeded in landing the troops from the Iphigenia and transports; but, in the mean time, after an outpost had been assaulted and carried by a detachment from colonel Fraser's brigade, the french commanding officer on the island, colonel St.-Susaune, had requested a suspension of arms. This was agreed to, and at 6 P. M. the capitulation was signed, and Isle Bourbon became a british possession; that, too, with so slight a loss as one subaltern, one sergeant, and six rank and file killed, two rank and file and
and French surren
two seamen drowned, and one major, (T. Edwards, 1810. of the 86th,) seven subalterns, two sergeants, two July. drummers, 66 rank and file, and one seaman wounded; total, 22 killed and drowned, and 79 wounded. On the 9th Mr. Farquhar landed from the Boadicea, and, as had been previously arranged, assumed the government of the conquered island.
A part of the duty of the Sirius frigate was to Lieut. take possession of the shipping in the bay of St.- man Paul. Observing a brig getting ready to sail, captain Pym, at 11 P. M. on the 9th, despatched the french barge under the orders of lieutenant George R. privaNorman, to endeavour to bring the vessel out, or to cut her off should she attempt to escape. Finding, by boarding the other vessels in the bay, that the brig had sailed since 9 P. M., lieutenant Norman pushed on, and, after a hard row of nearly 12 hours, overtook, boarded, and, with three men slightly wounded, carried in a most gallant manner, the Edward privateer, of Nantes, pierced for 16 guns, but with only four 12-pounders and 30 men on board; a fine brig of 245 tons, then on her way to the Islé of France with despatches from the government at home.
Immediately after the surrender of Isle Bourbon, Capt. the Sirius returned to her station off the Isle of Pym France; and, while standing along the south side, discovered a three-masted schooner making every after a exertion to haul herself on shore out of reach of the threefrigate. Captain Pym immediately despatched the schoocutter and pinnace of the Sirius, with 14 men in ner. each, the former commanded by lieutenant Norman, and the latter by lieutenant John Wyatt Watling. The two boats hastened to the beach, and found the schooner fast aground, and under the protection of about 300 regulars and militia, with two field-pieces. Kiert Notwithstanding this, lieutenant Norman and his man little party succeeded, without sustaining any loss, Watin boarding and destroying the vessel, which was ling
destroy partly laden with supplies for the french army. While the service was executing, the tide had ebbed con
the whole posse
1810, siderably; whereby the British, in their way back July to their boats, were obliged to pass
militaire within half musket-shot. Unfortunately, too, the pinnace was aground; and, in the efforts to get her afloat, one seaman was killed and a midshipman badly wounded.
Soon after the boats had returned to the Sirius, the Iphigenia joined from Isle Bourbon; as, in a day or two afterwards, did the Néréide and the Staunch gun-brig. On board the Néréide were 12 Madras artillery men under lieutenant Aldwinkle, and 100 choice troops, consisting of 50 grenadiers of the 69th regiment under lieutenant Needhall, and 50 of the 33d, under lieutenant Morlett, the whole commanded by captain Todd of the 69th. This force had been placed on board the Néréide by lieutenant-colonel
Keating, in order to cooperate with captain WilIntend- loughby, in an attack, in the first instance, upon Isle
de la Passe, a small rocky island, situated upwards of four miles to the eastward of the town of Grand-Port,
or Port Sud-Est,* on the south-east side of the Passe. Isle of France; and the narrow and intricate chan
nel to the harbour of which town, one face of the battery on the above small island completely commands.
The main object, in possessing this key to GrandPort, was to enable captain Willoughby, by the aid of a black pilot serving with him in the Néréide, to enter the intricate channel to the harbour, and, accompanied by an adequate force, to land in the
vicinity of the town before the post could be Gover- strengthened from head-quarters; and then to distriParqu
bute among the inhabitants copies of a proclamation har's addressed to them by governor Farquhar of Isle procla- Bourbon.
This proclamation, like all others of the tions. same kind, drew as frightful a picture of the present
misery of the inhabitants, as it did a flattering one of their future happiness, provided, when the British came to conquer their country, they offered no resist
ed attack upon Isle de la
* Called also Port Impérial.
ance. In short, as the principal strength of the 1810. island, after its forts were carried, consisted in its
Aug. unembodied militia, the object was, by sapping their integrity, to render them comparatively powerless.
On the 10th of August, having left captain Expe. Lambert, with the Iphigenia, off Port-Louis, captain against Pym, with the Sirius, Néréide, and Staunch, arrived Isle off Grand-Port, On the same evening the boats of the Passe two frigates, containing about 400 seamen, marines,
persed and soldiers, under the command of captain Wil- by bad loughby, were taken in tow by the Staunch, who had weaon board the Néréide's black pilot, and proceeded to attack Isle de la Passe. The night becoming very dark, and the weather extremely boisterous, so as to occasion several of the boats to run foul of each other and some to get stove, the pilot began to falter, and declared it was impossible to enter the channel under such disadvantageous circumstances. Captain Willoughby offered the man a thousand dollars, if he would persevere and carry the boats in; but the pilot persisted in his declaration of the impracticability of the undertaking, and the enterprise was given up. Daylight on the 11th discovered the boats scattered in all directions by the weather, but the frigates and gun-brig at length picked them up.
In order to Tull the suspicions of the French as to Anany meditated attack upon Isle de la Passe, captain attack Pym bore away with his small force round the south-conwest end of the island, and joined captain Lambert plated. off Port-Louis. It was now arranged, to further the deception, that the two frigates should return off Isle de la Passe by different routes, the Sirius to beat up by the longest or eastern route, and the Néréide, accompanied by the Staunch, to proceed by the leeward or south-western route ; and, as the Néréide sailed very badly, it was calculated that the two frigates would arrive off Grand-Port nearly at the same time. Previously to the departure of the Sirius, two boats from the Iphigenia, under the command of
with boats of
1810. lieutenant Henry Ducie Chads, second of that ship, Aug
came on board to assist in the intended attack. Lieut.
On the 13th, in the afternoon, the Sirius arrived Nor- off Isle de la Passe ; but the Néréide and Staunch, parts having to beat up from the south-west end of the
Isle of France, were still at a great distance to
leeward. Fearing that the French might gain some Sirius intimation of his intention, and thus render the enterIphige prise doubly hazardous, and perhaps impracticable,
captain Pym resolved to detach his own boats on the service; the more so, as the weather was unusually favourable, and as he had taken from the Néréide her black pilot. Accordingly, at 8 P. M., five boats, including the Iphigenia's two, containing between them 71 officers, seamen, and marines,* commanded by lieutenant Norman, and assisted by lieutenants Chads and Watling, and lieutenants of marines James Cottell and William Bate, pushed off from the Sirius.
Of the nature of the fortifications upon Isle de
la Passe, we are not able to give so accurate a scription of description as we could wish. The guns mounted tificate upon the island consisted, we believe, of four 24, tions. and nine 18 pounders, together with three 13-inch
mortars and two howitzers. The landing-place was on the inner or north-west side of the island, and was defended by a chevaux de frise and the two howitzers. But, to get to this landing-place, it was necessary to pass a battery, on which most of the guns were mounted. The garrison on the island consisted, at this time, of two commissioned officers and about 80 regular troops.
Fortunately for the British, just as the boats were approaching the principal battery, a black cloud obscured the moon, which had beenshining very bright, and concealed them from view. Lieutenant Norman had previously directed lieutenant Watling, who was in the launch of the Sirius, to lead, and cover the
* We formerly said 110, but we are assured that the number in the text comprises all that embarked.