More Detail On HMS Falcon’s History and Statistics

For the truly numbers-oriented naval history folks, not a large crowd I admit, there is this. Like the Roman Empire before it, the British Empire was a marvel of administrative record keeping. That such information, at this level of detail, could be available approximately 250 years after the fact, is a wonder.

I sometimes think that most of what future historians will have to go on from our era is a lot of styrofoam floating across what used to be Florida, and cat videos.


Falcon image of schematic

Sheer draft of the actual ship, from Britain’s National Archives, by kind permission of the HMS Falcon group


And now the numbers…by permission of the good people at… The Falcon’s history, and statistics.


Nominal Guns 14 BWAS-1714
Nationality Great Britain
Operator The Royal Navy
Ordered 1768/10/27 BWAS-1714
Keel Laid Down 1769/04 BWAS-1714
Launched 1771/06/15 BWAS-1714
How acquired Purpose built BWAS-1714
Shipyard Portsmouth Dockyard BWAS-1714
Ship Class Swallow Class
Designed by Thomas Slade BWAS-1714
Constructor Thomas Bucknall BWAS-1714
Category Unrated BWAS-1714
Ship Type Ship-Sloop
Foundered 1779/09/20 BWAS-1714



Dimension Measurement Type Metric Equivalent BWAS-1714
Length of Gundeck 95′ 0″ Imperial Feet 28.956
Length of Keel 78′ 0″ Imperial Feet 23.7744
Breadth 27′ 1 ½” Imperial Feet 8.2423
Depth in Hold 13′ 0″ Imperial Feet 3.9624
Burthen 308 5894 Tons BM


1771/06/15 Broadside Weight = 45 Imperial Pound

( 20.4078 kg)

Upper Gun Deck 14 British 6-Pounder
Upper Gun Deck 12 British 1/2-Pound Swivel

Crew Complement

Date # of Men Notes Source
1768 125 Design Complement  ?


From To Rank Name Source
1771/01/21 1774 Commander Cuthbert Bains BWAS-1714
1774/10 1777/02/16 Commander John Linzee BWAS-1714
1777/02/16 1778/02/07 Commander The Hon. Thomas Windsor BWAS-1714
1778/02/07 1778/08/05 Commander Harry Harmood BWAS-1714
1778/11/24 1779/09/20 Commander Richard Lock BWAS-1714

Commissioned Officers

From To Rank Name Source
1773 1774/08 Acting Lieutenant Bartholomew James B110

Petty Officers

From To Rank Name Source
1771/05 1773 Midshipman Bartholomew James B110
1774/11/18 1777/02/14 Midshipman William Robert Broughton ref:616

Service History

Date Event Source
1769/04 Began building at Portsmouth Dockyard BWAS-1714
1771/06/15 Completed building at Portsmouth Dockyard at a cost of £7209.8.6d BWAS-1714
1771/08/01 Sailed for the Leeward Islands BWAS-1714
1774 Ordered home and paid off? BWAS-1714
1774/10 Recommissioned BWAS-1714
1774/10 Began fitting at Portsmouth Dockyard BWAS-1714
1774/11 Completed fitting at Portsmouth Dockyard at a cost of £2031.14.3d BWAS-1714
1775/02/26 Sailed for North America BWAS-1714
1777/12/10 Took the Unrated Sloop Schuyler
1778/06/24 Took the Privateer Mehitabel by boat attack at sandford, CT
1778/06/24 Took the Privateer Brig General Arnold by boat attack at sandford, CT
1778/08/05 Sunk to avoid capture at Rhode Island BWAS-1714
1778/11 Raised and recommissioned BWAS-1714
1779/09/20 Lost with all hands BWAS-1714



ID Description Author Type
BWAS-1714 British Warships in the Age of Sail 1714 – 1792 Rif Winfield Book
B110 NRS Vol 006 – The Journal of Bartholemew James John Knox Laughton Ed. Book
ref:616 Who’s Who in Nelson’s Navy Nicholas Tracy Book

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