Across the Atlantic

During the period in which Arthur Barrow may have been on board, HMS Ferret was firstly commanded by Commander Charles Ramsay Drinkwater-Bethune on the Honduras – Nassau station, the brig visiting amongst other places, Port Royal in Jamaica and Chagres, now a deserted village, but then a major port on the Atlantic defended by Fort Lorenzo. Chagres was the start point for the crossing of the Panama isthmus before the building of the canal. The Ferret was also involved in rescuing the brig Irlam after that ship had been attacked by pirates on the high seas some 500 miles south-west of Madiera (Fer_1).  Commander Thomas Hastings took over as captain on the Mediterranean station, when Captain Edward Wodehouse was the Senior, he subsequently commanding the Ferret from 23rd July 1830 until early 1831.  On this station the Ferret sailed to all parts of the Mediterranean; amongst them Corfu, Paros, Malta, Gibraltar and Algiers (Fer_2).  The ‘Ferret’ should not be confused with a mail ‘packet brig’, also named ‘Ferret’ in the English Channel, sometimes ferrying important personages between England and France – in occasional atrocious weather (Fer_3, Fer_4, Fer_5).  At the time Arthur Barrow was on board the sloop brig ‘Ferret’ in the Mediterranean.


HMS Ferret

A 237 ton, 10-gun Cherokee-class brig-sloop, ordered on 23rd May 1820, laid down in Portsmouth Dockyard in August 1820, launched on the 12th October 1821, and sold in 1837.


The 10-gun brig sloop HMS Cherokee, the type ship of HMS Ferret.

Cherokee class brig sloop

Capture of the Spanish slave vessel ‘Dolores’ by HM Brig Ferret 4th April 1816

Capture of the Spanish slave vessel 'Dolores' by H.M. brig 'Ferret' 4 April 1816

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