Original British Napoleonic Wars Naval Gunner Water Keg - HMS GOLIATH
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. This is a classic British naval gunner's water keg which is dated 1805!
The water keg measures 7" wide by 7.5 tall. It has an iron carrying chain in place, is barrel shaped and has four iron hoops. One end is marked with broad arrow and B.O. which stands for "BOARD OF ORDNANCE". The other end branded with the year 1805. On the side there is a re-enforced plug hole which would have had a "stopper" long absent and there is a brass plaque mounted to the side held by two screws which is engraved:-
GUNNERS WATER KEG
Rev. A. Oakley 1935
Kegs such as this were used for fresh water not only for drinking but more so for washing one's gun powder covered body down during or after a Naval Gunnery action.
HMS Goliath was a 74-gun third rate ship of the line in the Royal Navy. She was launched on 19 October 1781 at Deptford Dockyard. She was present at the Battle of Cape St Vincent, Battle of the Nile, and Battle of Copenhagen. She was broken up in 1815.
On 27 January 1803, during the Blockade of Saint-Domingue, Goliath sent out a boat that captured a small French schooner that had been on her way from Santiago de Cuba to Port-au-Prince, with a cargo of sugar and $3,476 in cash. The schooner was armed with three carriage guns and some swivel guns.
The next day, Goliath sailed inshore off Cape Nicholas Mole, Haiti, to try to find two vessels seen earlier. In the Action of 28 June 1803, she encountered and after a few shots captured the ship-corvette Mignonne, which the British navy took into service under her French name. In Brisbane's words, Mignonne was a "remarkable fast sailing Ship Corvette". She carried sixteen long 18-pounder guns, six of which she had landed. Her crew of only 80 men was under the command of Monsieur J. P. Bargeaud, Capitaine de Fregate, and she was two days out of Les Cayes, sailing to France via the Cape.
In May 1805 Goliath was in the Channel Fleet. On 15 August Goliath spotted four vessels, one to eastward and three to westward. Goliath sailed east and joined Camilla, which was in pursuit of the French brig-corvette Faune. Goliath then helped Camilla to capture Faune.
On the same day Raisonnable joined Goliath ant the two set out after the three sails, which were the French 44-gun frigate Topaze, the corvettes Department-des-Landes and Torche. Goliath subsequently captured Torche, which was under the command of M. Dehen, and carried 18 guns and a crew of 196 men. She also had on board as prisoners 52 men from Blanche. The French flotilla had captured Blanche on 19 July, some 150 miles north of Puerto Rico. The Royal Navy took Torche, which was a sister-ship to Mignonne, into service as HMS Torch, but never commissioned her.
On 26 July 1807 Goliath sailed as a part of a fleet of 38 vessels for Copenhagen and was present from 15 August to 20 October that year for the siege and bombardment of Copenhagen and the capture of the Danish Fleet by Admiral Gambier. She was present from May to October 1808 in the Baltic with a fleet under Vice-admiral Sir J Saumarez, being chased on 19 August by the Russian fleet in Hango Bay. On 30 August she joined the Centaur, Implacable and the Swedish fleet blockading the Russians in the port of Rogerswick.
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