World Naval Ships Forums  
VIEW ALL OF OUR CURRENT SPECIAL OFFERS HERE!

Go Back   World Naval Ships Forums > Naval History > Member Articles
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Member Articles Naval articles submitted by our community members.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 28-10-2010, 17:16
Dreadnought's Avatar
Dreadnought Dreadnought is offline
Forum Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Stratford-upon-Avon, England
Posts: 3,027
Default The Battle of Trafalgar: Nelson's Death

BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson’s Death

Events leading up to Nelson’s being wounded are covered in the thread BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Engage the Enemy


Nelson Shot
The wound was inflicted by a musket ball which was certainly fired from the mizzen top of Redoutable. Not only because of the distance (about 15 yards) and situation of the mizen top in reference to the course of the ball, but also, that the French ship's main top was screened by a portion of the Victory's mainsail as it hung when clewed up.

Was the shot fired deliberately at Nelson? A subject of debate. when the aim must have been taken, Nelson was walking on the outer side, hidden from view to an extent, by a much taller and stouter man in the form of Hardy. If the French seaman or marine, had singled out the British Commander-in-Chief, based upon being the best dressed officer, he would most probably have fixed upon Hardy, or, even one of the Lieutenants also in the vicinity of Nelson.

Who fired the shot? Not determined, although 25 years after the battle a certain French Sergeant Robert Guillemard claimed to have done so. According to his account, he and three other soldiers, along with two sailors, were ordered to the tops after all of the French topmen had been killed. He goes on to say that he identified Nelson “covered with orders and only one arm”, surrounded by other officers and sailors, and that he fired “at hazard” into this group. He then claims to have seen Nelson fallen after his fire.

The more likely, and most accepted, account is that there were only two Frenchmen left alive in the mizen-top of Redoutable at the time, and after Nelson fell, they both continued firing at Hardy and Captain Adair, Marine Lieutenant Rotley and some of the Midshipman on the Victory's poop, for some time afterwards. Eventually, one of them was killed by a musket-ball, and the other was shot in the back as he tried to escape the rigging. Both Mishipmen Pollard and/or Francis Collingwood have been credited with this in various accounts.

The wound was by a musket-ball, which had entered Nelson’s left shoulder through the epaulette of hid coat, and then continued downwards through his lung, before becoming lodged in his spine. In fact, although challenged by some modern medical reviews, Beatty described the extent of the injuries discovered subsequent to Nelson’s death, as follows:

The ball struck the fore part of His Lordship’s epaulette; and entered the left shoulder immediately before the processus acromion scapulae, which it slightly fractured. It then descended obliquely into the thorax, fracturing the second and third ribs: and after penetrating the left lobe of the lungs, and dividing in its passage a large branch of the pulmonary artery, it entered the left side of the spine between the sixth and seventh dorsal vertebræ, fractured the left transverse process of the sixth dorsal vertebra, wounded the medulla spinalis, and fracturing the right transverse process of the seventh vertebra, made its way from the right side of the spine, directing its course through the muscles of the back; and lodged therein, about two inches below the inferior angle of the right scapula. On removing the ball, a portion of the gold-lace and pad of the epaulette, together with a small piece of His Lordship’s coat, was found firmly attached to it.’

Nelson Dies
The most creditable account of Nelson’s death is that of The Victory’s Surgeon Doctor William Beatty, who published his “Authentic Narrative of the Death of Lord Nelson” in 1807. Although this is much published, and widely available, much of it shall be reproduced here for the sake of completeness.

‘Several wounded Officers, and about forty men, were likewise earned to the Surgeon for assistance just at this time; and some others had breathed their last during their conveyance below. Among the latter were Lieutenant William Andrew Ram, and Mr. Whipple Captain's Clerk. The Surgeon had just examined these two Officers, and found that they were dead, when His attention was arrested by several of the wounded calling to him, "Mr. Beatty, Lord Nelson is here: Mr. Beatty, the Admiral is wounded."

The Surgeon now, on looking round, saw the handkerchief fall from his Lordship's face; when the stars on His coat, which also had been covered by it, appeared. Mr. Burke the Purser, and the Surgeon, ran immediately to the assistance of His Lordship, and took him from the arms of the Seamen who had carried him below. In conveying him to one of the Midshipmen's births, they stumbled, but recovered themselves without falling. Lord Nelson then inquired who were supporting him; and when the Surgeon informed him, His Lordship replied, "Ah, Mr. Beatty! you can do nothing for me. I have but a short time to live: my back is shot through."

The Surgeon said, "he hoped the wound was not so dangerous as His Lordship imagined, and that he might still survive long to enjoy His glorious victory.

"The Reverend Doctor Scott, who had been absent in another part of the cockpit administering lemonade to the wounded, now came instantly to His Lordship; and in the anguish of grief wrung his hands, and said: "Alas, Beatty, how prophetic you were!" alluding to the apprehensions expressed by the Surgeon for His Lordship's safety previous to the battle.

His Lordship was laid upon a bed, stripped of his clothes, and covered with a sheet. While this was effecting, he said to Doctor Scott, "Doctor, I told you so. Doctor, I am gone;" and after a short pause he added in a low voice, "I have to leave Lady Hamilton, and my adopted daughter Horatia, as a legacy to my Country.

"The Surgeon then examined the wound, assuring His Lordship that he would not put him to much pain in endeavouring to discover the course of the ball; which he soon found had penetrated deep into the chest, and had probably lodged in the spine.

THis being explained to His Lordship, he replied, "he was confident his back was shot through."

The back was then examined externally, but without any injury being perceived; on which His Lordship was requested by the Surgeon to make him acquainted with all his sensations.

He replied, that "he felt a gush of blood every minute within his breast: that he had no feeling in the lower part of His body: and that his breathing was difficult, and attended with very severe pain about that part of the spine where he was confident that the ball had struck; for," said he, "I felt it break my back."

These symptoms, but more particularly the gush of blood which His Lordship complained of, together with the state of his pulse, indicated to the Surgeon the hopeless situation of the case; but till after the victory was ascertained and announced to His Lordship, the true nature of His wound was concealed by the Surgeon from all on board except only Captain Hardy, Doctor Scott, Mr. Burke, and Messrs. Smith and Westemburg the Assistant Surgeons.

The Victory's crew cheered whenever they observed an Enemy's ship surrender. On one of these occasions, Lord Nelson anxiously inquired what was the cause of it; when Lieutenant Pasco, who lay wounded at some distance from His Lordship, raised himself up, and told him that another ship had struck, which appeared to give him much satisfaction.

He now felt an ardent thirst; and frequently called for drink, and to be fanned with paper, making use of these words: "Fan, fan," and "Drink, drink." THis he continued to repeat, when he wished for drink or the refreshment of cool air, till a very few minutes before he expired. Lemonade, and wine and water, were given to him occasionally.

He evinced great solicitude for the event of the battle, and fears for the safety of His friend Captain Hardy. Doctor Scott and Mr. Burke used every argument they could suggest, to relieve hhis anxiety. Mr. Burke told him "the Enemy were decisively defeated, and that he hoped His Lordship would still live to be himself the bearer of the joyful tidings to His country."

He replied, "It is nonsense, Mr. Burke, to suppose I can live: my sufferings are great, but they will all be soon over."

Doctor Scott entreated His Lordship "not to despair of living," and said "he trusted that Divine Providence would restore him once more to His dear Country and friends."

"Ah, Doctor!" replied His Lordship, "it is all over; it is all over."

Many messages were sent to Captain Hardy by the Surgeon, requesting His attendance on His Lordship; who became impatient to see him, and often exclaimed: "Will no one bring Hardy to me? He must be killed: he is surely destroyed."

The Captain's Aide-de-camp, Mr. Bulkley, now came below, and stated that "circumstances respecting the Fleet required Captain Hardy'S presence on deck, but that he would avail himself of the first favourable moment to visit His Lordship."

On hearing him deliver this message to the Surgeon, His Lordship inquired who had brought it.

Mr. Burke answered, "It is Mr. Bulkley, my Lord."

"It is His voice," replied His Lordship: he then said to the young gentleman, "Remember me to your father."

An hour and ten minutes however elapsed, from the time of His Lordship's being wounded, before Captain Hardy's first subsequent interview with him; the particulars of which are nearly as follow. They shook hands affectionately, and Lord Nelson said: "Well, Hardy, how goes the battle? How goes the day with us?"

"Very well, my Lord," replied Captain Hardy: "we have got twelve or fourteen of the Enemy's ships in our possession; but five of their van have tacked, and shew an intention of bearing down upon the Victory. I have therefore called two or three of our fresh ships round us, and have no doubt of giving them a drubbing."

"I hope," said His Lordship, "none of our ships have struck, Hardy."

"No, my Lord," replied Captain Hardy; "there is no fear of that."

Lord Nelson then said: "I am a dead man, Hardy. I am going fast: it will be all over with me soon. Come nearer to me. Pray let my dear Lady Hamilton have my hair, and all other things belonging to me."

Mr. Burke was about to withdraw at the commencement of this conversation; but His Lordship, perceiving his intention, desired he would remain. Captain Hardy observed, that "he hoped Mr. Beatty could yet hold out some prospect of life."

"Oh! no," answered His Lordship; "it is impossible. My back is shot through. Beatty will tell you so."

Captain Hardy then returned on deck, and at parting shook hands again with his revered friend and Commander.

His Lordship now requested the Surgeon, who had been previously absent a short time attending Mr. Rivers, to return to the wounded, and give His assistance to such of them as he could be useful to; "for," said he, "you can do nothing for me."

The Surgeon assured him that the Assistant Surgeons were doing every thing that could be effected for those unfortunate men; but on His Lordship's several times repeating his injunctions to that purpose, he left him surrounded by Doctor Scott, Mr. Burke, and two of His Lordship's domestics.

After the Surgeon had been absent a few minutes attending Lieutenants Peake and Reeves of the Marines, who were wounded, he was called by Doctor Scott to His Lordship, who said: "Ah, Mr. Beatty! I have sent for you to say, what I forgot to tell you before, that all power of motion and feeling below my breast are gone; and you" continued he, "very well know I can live but a short time."

The emphatic manner in which he pronounced these last words, left no doubt in the Surgeon's mind, that he adverted to the case of a man who had some months before received a mortal injury of the spine on board the Victory, and had laboured under similar privations of sense and muscular motion. The case had made a great impression on Lord Nelson: he was anxious to know the cause of such symptoms, which was accordingly explained to him; and he now appeared to apply the situation and fate of this man to himself.

The Surgeon answered, "My Lord, you told me so before:" but he now examined the extremities, to ascertain the fact; when His Lordship said, "Ah, Beatty! I am too certain of it: Scott and Burke have tried it already.You know I am gone."

The Surgeon replied: "My Lord, unhappily for our Country, nothing can be done for you;"and having made this declaration he was so much affected, that he turned round and withdrew a few steps to conceal his emotions.

His Lordship said: "I know it. I feel something rising in my breast," putting his hand on his left side, "which tells me I am gone."

Drink was recommended liberally, and Doctor Scott and Mr. Burke fanned him with paper. He often exclaimed, "God be praised, I have done my duty;" and upon the Surgeon's inquiring whether his pain was still very great, he declared, "it continued so very severe, that he wished he was dead. Yet," said he in a lower voice, "one would like to live a little longer, too:" and after a pause of a few minutes, he added in the same tone, "What would become of poor Lady Hamilton, if she knew my situation!"

The Surgeon, finding it impossible to render His Lordship any further assistance, left him, to attend Lieutenant Bligh, Messrs. Smith and Westphall Midshipmen, and some Seamen, recently wounded.

Captain Hardy now came to the cockpit to see His Lordship a second time, which was after an interval of about fifty minutes from the conclusion of his first visit. Before he quitted the deck, he sent Lieutenant Hills to acquaint Admiral Collingwood with the lamentable circumstance of Lord Nelson's being wounded.

Lord Nelson and Captain Hardy shook hands again: and while the Captain retained His Lordship's hand, he congratulated him even in the arms of Death on his brilliant victory; "which," he said, "was complete; though he did not know how many of the Enemy were captured, as it was impossible to perceive every ship distinctly. He was certain however of fourteen or fifteen having surrendered."

His Lordship answered, "That is well, but I bargained for twenty:" and then emphatically exclaimed, "Anchor, Hardy, anchor!"

To this the Captain replied: "I suppose, my Lord, Admiral Collingwood will now take upon himself the direction of affairs."

"Not while I live, I hope, Hardy!" cried the dying Chief; and at that moment endeavoured ineffectually to raise himself from the bed. "No," added he; "do you anchor, Hardy."

Captain Hardy then said: "Shall we make the signal, Sir?"

"Yes," answered His Lordship; "for if I live, I'll anchor."

The energetic manner in which he uttered these his last orders to Captain Hardy, accompanied with his efforts to raise himself, evinced his determination never to resign the command while he retained the exercise of his transcendant faculties, and that he expected Captain Hardy still to carry into effect the suggestions of his exalted mind; a sense of his duty overcoming the pains of death.

He then told Captain Hardy, "he felt that in a few minutes he should be no more;" adding in a low tone, "Don't throw me overboard, Hardy."

The Captain answered: "Oh! no, certainly not."

"Then," replied His Lordship, "you know what to do: and," continued he, "take care of my dear Lady Hamilton, Hardy; take care of poor Lady Hamilton. Kiss me, Hardy."

The Captain now knelt down, and kissed his cheek; when His Lordship said, "Now I am satisfied. Thank God, I have done my duty."

Captain Hardy stood for a minute or two in silent contemplation: he then knelt down again, and kissed His Lordship's forehead.

His Lordship said: "Who is that?"

The Captain answered: "It is Hardy;" to which His Lordship replied, "God bless you, Hardy!"

After this affecting scene Captain Hardy withdrew, and returned to the quarter-deck, having spent about eight minutes in this his last interview with his dying friend.

Lord Nelson now desired Mr. Chevalier, his Steward, to turn him upon his right side; which being effected, His Lordship said: "I wish I had not left the deck, for I shall soon be gone."

He afterwards became very low; his breathing was oppressed, and his voice faint. He said to Doctor Scott, "Doctor, I have not been a great sinner;" and after a short pause, "Remember, that I leave Lady Hamilton and my Daughter Horatia as a legacy to my Country: and," added he, "never forget Horatia."

His thirst now increased; and he called for "Drink, drink," "Fan, fan," and "Rub, rub:" addressing himself in the last case to Doctor Scott, who had been rubbing His Lordship's breast with his hand, from which he found some relief. These words he spoke in a very rapid manner, which rendered his articulation difficult: but he every now and then, with evident increase of pain, made a greater effort with his vocal powers, and pronounced distinctly these last words: "Thank God, I have done my duty;" and this great sentiment he continued to repeat as long as he was able to give it utterance.

His Lordship became speechless in about fifteen minutes after Captain Hardy left him. Doctor Scott and Mr. Burke, who had all along sustained the bed under his shoulders (which raised him in nearly a semi-recumbent posture, the only one that was supportable to him), forbore to disturb him by speaking to him; and when he had remained speechless about five minutes, His Lordship's Steward went to the Surgeon, who had been a short time occupied with the wounded in another part of the cockpit, and stated his apprehensions that His Lordship was dying.

The Surgeon immediately repaired to him, and found him on the verge of dissolution. He knelt down by his side, and took up his hand; which was cold, and the pulse gone from the wrist. On the Surgeon's feeling his forehead, which was likewise cold, His Lordship opened his eyes, looked up, and shut them again.

The Surgeon again left him, and returned to the wounded who required his assistance; but was not absent five minutes before the Steward announced to him that "he believed His Lordship had expired."

The Surgeon returned, and found that the report was but too well founded: His Lordship had breathed his last, at thirty minutes past four o'clock; at which period Doctor Scott was in the act of rubbing his Lordship's breast, and Mr. Burke supporting the bed under his shoulders.

Preserved For The Trip Home
On the day after the battle, Beatty made the preparations for the prervation of the Nelson’s body, and here, there are some discrepancies regarding exactly what was done.

‘There was no lead on board to make a coffin: a cask called a leaguer, which is of the largest size on shipboard, was therefore chosen for the reception of the Body; which, after the hair had been cut off, was stripped of the clothes except the shirt, and put into it, and the Cask was then filled with brandy.’

In the late evening of the 22nd October as the British Fleet and its’ prizes headed for Gibraltar, they were engulfed by severe gale force winds. Beatty writes:

‘During this boisterous weather, Lord Nelson's Body remained under the charge of a sentinel on the middle deck. The cask was placed on its end, having a closed aperture at its top and another below; the object of which was, that as a frequent renewal of the spirit was thought necessary, the old could thus be drawn off below and a fresh quantity introduced above, without moving the cask, or occasioning the least agitation of the Body.

On the 24th there was a disengagement of air from the Body to such a degree, that the sentinel became alarmed on seeing the head of the cask raised: he therefore applied to the Officers, who were under the necessity of having the cask spiled to give the air a discharge. After this, no considerable collection of air took place. The spirit was drawn off once, and the cask filled again, before the arrival of the Victory at Gibraltar (on the 28th of October): where spirit of wine was procured; and the cask, shewing a deficit produced by the Body's absorbing a considerable quantity of the brandy, was then filled up with it.’

A note here: Beatty was aware that the best preservation of Nelson’s body would be achieved with the highest strength of alcohol he could use. There was an abundance of rum on board, but he chose brandy due to it’s higher strength. He was later criticised for this, there being a misplaced belief by others that rum preserved a dead body longer. Spirt of wine is the ideal (rectified spirits – almost pure ethyl alcohol), and hence why it was procured in Gibraltar to replace the depleted brandy.

Beatty further reports:

‘When the Victory had proceeded some weeks on her voyage, adverse winds and tempestuous weather having prolonged the passage much beyond the period that is generally expected, it was thought proper to draw off the spirit from the cask containing Lord Nelson's Body, and renew it; and this was done twice. On these occasions brandy was used in the proportion of two-thirds to one of spirit of wine.’

Upon finally arriving at Spithead some weeks later, and in the absence of any instructions from the Admiralty regarding Nelson’s remains, Beatty, upon hearing that Nelson was likely to lay in state at Greenwich hospital, informed Hardy that the body should be examined as to its state. Hardy had been ordered to take Victory to the Nore, and on the 11th December, as it set sail Nelson's Body was taken from the cask in which it had been kept since the day after his death.

Beatty observed:

‘On inspecting it externally, it exhibited a state of perfect preservation, without being in the smallest degree offensive. There were, however, some appearances that induced the Surgeon to examine the condition of the bowels; which were found to be much decayed, and likely in a short time to communicate the process of putrefaction to the rest of the Body: the parts already injured were therefore removed. It was at tHis time that the fatal ball was discovered: it had passed through the spine, and lodged in the muscles of the back, towards the right side, and a little below the shoulder-blade. A very considerable portion of the gold-lace, pad, and lining of the epaulette, with a piece of the coat, was found attached to the ball: the lace of the epaulette was as firmly so, as if it had been inserted into the metal while in a state of fusion.’

Nelson, was not returned to the cask, instead being transferred to a more conventional coffin. Again Beatty documents this:

‘The Remains were wrapped in cotton vestments, and rolled from head to foot with bandages of the same material, in the ancient mode of embalming. The Body was then put into a leaden coffin, filled with brandy holding in solution camphor and myrrh.’

By this time, the stock of spirit of wine on board was exhausted and from the sound state of the Body, brandy was judged sufficient for its preservation.

‘This coffin was inclosed in a wooden one, and placed in the after-part of HIS LORDSHIP'S cabin; where it remained till the 21st of December, when an order was received from the Admiralty for the removal of the Body.’


In the subsequent posts, we will look at Nelson’s lying in state and his funeral.

BattleTrafalgar_13: The Death of Nelson – Oil painting by Arthur William Devis 1807

This is the most famous representation of Nelson’s death, in the cockpit of ‘Victory’ at about 4.30 pm on 21 October 1805. In painting it Devis was responding to a press advertisement of 22 November 1805 from the publisher Josiah Boydell that he would pay 500 guineas for the best ‘Death of Nelson’ painting, for engraving.

Devis may have boarded ‘Victory’ off Portsmouth with the aid of Nelson’s banker, Alexander Davison (one of his patrons), and told her officers that he had been freed from the rules of the King’s Bench to attempt the subject to pay his debts. He worked aboard for a week making notes, sketches and portrait studies before sailing with her for the Nore on 11 December, the day he drew Nelson’s body (and the fatal bullet) during Dr Beatty’s sea-borne autopsy to prepare it for lying-in-state. From this, Beatty commissioned a Nelson portrait – of which Devis made several versions, one shown at the Royal Academy in 1807 – and obtained the illustrations for his own published Narratives. Devis’s care for accuracy also included making a model of the scene to work from.

The scene in the cockpit on the 'Victory', 100 guns, as Nelson lay dying during the Battle of Trafalgar. Nelson reclines full-length facing to the left, covered by a sheet, leaving only his head, left shoulder and arm visible, with his uniform coat discarded at his feet. His portrait was painted from a posthumous sketch of the body that Devis made aboard the 'Victory' on its return to England in December 1805. Devis also made life sketches of those attending Nelson at his death, and incorporated them into this death scene.

In the centre at the back, the 'Victory's' Captain, Sir Thomas Masterman Hardy, stands over Nelson, his right hand on the ship's knee against which Nelson reclines. He stands full-length to left, in captain's (over three years) undress uniform, 1795-1812, his lower limbs masked by the surgeon, William Beatty, and Nelson's steward, William Chevailler. Hardy leans over them gazing down on Nelson, his cocked hat in his left hand. The ship's chaplain, Dr Alexander Scott rubs Nelson's chest. Walter Burke, the Purser supports Nelson's pillow immediately to his left and is shown half-length to the left, half behind Chevailler and wearing a brown coat and red waistcoat. Chevailler is shown half-length to right in a white shirt, and is on Nelson's left side. He looks towards the doctor and is partly masked by him. Beatty is shown full-length facing left in profile kneeling beside the dying Nelson and feeling his pulse. He is in surgeon's uniform, 1803-25, with blue breeches and hessian boots.

On the left of the picture are Lieutenant John Yule and Midshipman Edward Collingwood who is shown head and shoulders to the left, mainly obscured by the figure in front of him. He helps a sailor to handle some captured flags. Since he was a volunteer he has no uniform, but wears a midshipman's coat without the patch. Gaetano Spedillo, Nelson's Neapolitan valet, is shown full-length in profile to the right, in a brown coat and holding a glass in his left hand. His lower limbs are obscured by a figure in the foreground of the left of the painting of the group around the dying Nelson. On the right are Lieutenant George Miller Bligh and Assistant Surgeon Neil Smith. Bligh is half hidden by a marine in the foreground. He is shown half-length seated, facing to the left, apparently dazed from a wound in his head, wearing a lieutenant's full-dress coat, 1787-1812, with his left hand on the wound in his side. Looking towards the dying Nelson, in the right background, stands the ship's carpenter, William Bunce, slightly masked by Smith and Bligh. He is almost full-length to the left in profile wearing a warrant officer's uniform, natural coloured breeches and holds his hat in his right hand.

Painted two years after the event, this complex painting concentrates on the human response of the men involved in this important event in the life of the nation. To evoke this, the artist has incorporated portraiture with the imagery of Renaissance religious painting, bathing Nelson in a golden light.

Photograph and description of painting courtesy of the National Maritime Museum
Attached Images
File Type: jpg BattleTrafalgar_13.jpg (1.22 MB, 16 views)
__________________
Clive Sweetingham

"Strive for perfection in everything you do. Take the best that exists and make it better. When it does not exist, design it." - Sir Henry Royce

Last edited by kc : 05-11-2014 at 16:19.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 28-10-2010, 18:44
Dave Hutson Dave Hutson is offline
Admiral
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Plymouth, Devon
Posts: 3,256
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Clive,

I have read the foregoing with great interest. I have a pamphlett cum thumbnail of Nelson's life which I update every anniversary of 21.10.1805.

With your permission I would like to include your last post in the production.

It will be endorsed as your work not mine.

It is just something I do for newcomers to our Trafalgar Night Celebrations.

Dave H
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 28-10-2010, 18:53
Dreadnought's Avatar
Dreadnought Dreadnought is offline
Forum Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Stratford-upon-Avon, England
Posts: 3,027
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Be my guest Dave, I am glad you found it of interest, and flattered that you wish to use it, although it is in the main, the writings of Surgeon Beatty.

Nevertheless, your comments are much appreciated.
__________________
Clive Sweetingham

"Strive for perfection in everything you do. Take the best that exists and make it better. When it does not exist, design it." - Sir Henry Royce
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 28-10-2010, 19:08
Dave Hutson Dave Hutson is offline
Admiral
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Plymouth, Devon
Posts: 3,256
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Thanks Clive, It is only by revelations by interested parties that these things are pieced together and perhaps generate interest in parties hitherto having only heard of Nelson decide to pursue the subject further, thus we hope keeping the history alive for future generations.

We in our generation together with being Navy are saturated in Naval History which we at times take for granted but sometimes forget that others who have not been involved are not not interested but don't have the knowledge that we enjoy would like to obtain if only they had a catalyst with which to start.

Does that make sense or am I post totting, I hope the former.

Dave H
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 28-10-2010, 19:27
Dreadnought's Avatar
Dreadnought Dreadnought is offline
Forum Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Stratford-upon-Avon, England
Posts: 3,027
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Certainly does make sense Dave, and one of the reasons I have put together the series of threads about Trafalgar is to try and put all the facts together for the benefit of those who only have a passing knowledge of this most important event, and the utmost significant role our naval history played at this time in shaping the future of our country.

In looking round the internet, I am sometimes frustrated how Trafalgar and Neslon's exploits are often trivialised and misrepresented. Distorted and false information unfortunately can be easily reproduced across the internet, and sometimes that needs to be addressed.

It would be a total tragedy, and somehow irresponsible of those who really understand the importance of this topic, for the facts to be diluted and lost in the mists of time, especially for our younger generations who slowly edge further and further away from any personal ties to those who served, and sacrificed their lives, in the greatest navy the world has ever seen, and that established Great Britain as one of the most powerful nations in history. That's not being jingoistic or fanatically patriotic, it just so happens to be the case. No doubt my sentiments will draw criticism, but I expect it will be from those who are not in full posession, or full appreciation of the historical facts.
__________________
Clive Sweetingham

"Strive for perfection in everything you do. Take the best that exists and make it better. When it does not exist, design it." - Sir Henry Royce
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 28-10-2010, 20:14
seaJane's Avatar
seaJane seaJane is offline
Vice Commodore
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hampshire or Somerset depending
Posts: 629
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Clive

You might be interested in this:
http://www.nature.com/sc/journal/v43.../3101850a.html

sJ
__________________
Call sign Foxtrot
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 05-11-2010, 10:06
Francis Stanley's Avatar
Francis Stanley Francis Stanley is offline
Commander
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Portsmouth
Posts: 478
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Clive
Thankyou for such a spellbinding read on this and your other Trafalgar thread.
I would be interested of what became of Lady Hamilton and of Horatia, I know that she was poorly treated by their Lordships but not the exact circumstances, do you have any records of the events?
__________________
Time is a great healer, unless you have a rash, then ointment is probably better.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 05-11-2010, 20:13
steve roberts steve roberts is offline
Crossed the Bar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: gosport hampshire uk
Posts: 2,133
Question Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Great read.I know that Lady Hamilton died in poverty.Does this mean, that the letter he wrote just before the battle was not considered a will? They were not married.Therefore under the law of the land she was not an Heir.But what about Horatia,surely she was a direct blood link,and then entitled to Merton and any assets Lord Nelson left.???
Many Regards Steve.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-11-2010, 01:05
seaJane's Avatar
seaJane seaJane is offline
Vice Commodore
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hampshire or Somerset depending
Posts: 629
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Steve,

Extract from the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography entry (written by Tom Pocock) -

Although Emma received a legacy of £2000, an annuity of £500, and the freehold of Merton Place under Nelson's will, which should have kept her in modest comfort for life, she was soon in debt and showed no sign of restraining her extravagance. ... in 1813 she was arrested for debt ... Her pleas to the prince regent, stressing Nelson's last wishes ... went unheeded. But she did find a friend in an Alderman Joshua Smith, who helped her to extract more of her annuity from Nelson's brother, Earl Nelson. This enabled her to escape, in July 1814, and sail with her daughter to Calais. There she lived in two upper rooms at 27 rue Française. Tended by Horatia, she remained in bed much of the time finding solace in the bottle; indeed Horatia later said that ‘she took little interest in anything but the indulgence of her unfortunate habit’ ... On 15 January 1815 she died—probably from a liver disease; she was buried on 21 January in the graveyard of the church of St Pierre, Calais ... The house where she died was destroyed during the Second World War. In 1994 a memorial to her was set up on the site of her initial burial, in what is now the Parc Richelieu in the centre of Calais.

Horatia was taken home to England by the British consul at Calais and given into the care of Nelson's sister and brother-in-law, Kate and George Matcham, and later lodged with his sister Susanna's family, the Boltons, in Burnham Market, Norfolk, where she married the curate, Philip Ward, and became the mother of a large family. She knew that Nelson had been her father but, despite strong evidence that Lady Hamilton was her mother, refused to acknowledge her as such throughout her long life.
__________________
Call sign Foxtrot
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 07-11-2010, 10:24
Alaric Alaric is offline
Leading Seaman
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: East Sussex
Posts: 34
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Indeed it was a sad end; she was clearly as dependant on him as he was on her (although not so dependant as to decline other affairs during the time he kept Emma as a mistress!).
Interesting to note that Horatia married another clergyman, there being so many in Nelson's line; one of her sons also took the cloth. And it never fails to amaze me that Horatia lived until 1881; my own grandfather, who I remember well, was alive at the same time as her - makes it all seem quite recent, really...
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 08-11-2010, 16:41
seaJane's Avatar
seaJane seaJane is offline
Vice Commodore
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hampshire or Somerset depending
Posts: 629
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Alaric,

A photograph of Horatia from 1859 surfaced relatively recently - you can see it online at the foot of this page:
http://nelson-society.com/html/family_life.html
__________________
Call sign Foxtrot
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 08-11-2010, 21:25
Alaric Alaric is offline
Leading Seaman
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: East Sussex
Posts: 34
Default Re: THE BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR: Nelson's Death

Thanks, seaJane.

Ah, the same forehead!
Reply With Quote
Reply



Ship Search by Name : Advanced Search
Random Timeline Entry : 30th January 1936 : HMS Galatea : Sailed Alicante

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Americans at the Battle of Trafalgar Abbeywood. Battles and Events 5 08-11-2011 16:16
Battle of Trafalgar: Dire Straits? serena Other Naval Topics 2 05-06-2011 00:40
Joseph Sutherland at Battle of Trafalgar alfredthegreat Royal Navy Ships and Crews 8 28-04-2011 17:39
Nelson and the Battle of Trafalgar tim lewin Battles and Events 62 02-05-2010 02:57


All times are GMT. The time now is 08:20.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.