|Naval History of Great Britain - Vol III
||Light Squadrons and Single Ships
neglecting to take any kind of weapon in his hand, leaped from the boat on board the chasse-marée; and, running to the side close off which the French boat lay, stood, in a menacing attitude, unarmed as he was, for at least half a minute, until his four companions, with a supply of muskets and ammunition, and who could only quit their ticklish boat one at a time, got to his assistance. If not astonishment at the sight, it must have been a generous impulse, that prevented the Frenchmen from shooting or sabring the brave boatswain; for they were, it seems, near enough to the vessel's side, to have done even the latter. Seeing that Lieutenant Rowed and his four men were determined to defend their prize, the French boat, after a feeble attempt to get possession, sheered off, the soldiers in her keeping up, for a short time, as they receded from the vessel, an ineffectual fire of musketry. The battery also opened a fire upon the chasse-marée as she was towing off ; but it proved equally harmless with that from the soldiers, both on the beach and in the boat.
The capture of two unarmed chasse-marées (for the mate had taken his prize without any difficulty) would, indeed, be a trifling occurrence, were it not for the circumstances under which one of them had been boarded and brought off ; circumstances that ennoble the act, and rank it above many which are blazoned in the Gazette, and yield to the parties both praise and promotion: The navy-list shows, that Lieutenant Rowed gained no step in his profession: indeed it was not, as the same document proves, until nearly ten years afterwards, that he was made a commander. As to the boatswain, he, it appears, on account of the very station he filled, and, by every account, so well filled, was, according to the etiquette of the service, excluded from the reward of promotion. It was only, therefore, from the Patriotic Fund at Lloyd's, that he could receive some testimony of the high opinion entertained of his services. Lieutenant Rowed himself made the application, founding it on the inability of the admiralty, without violating precedent, to provide for the " poor fellow; and who," adds his commander, and where was there a better judge? " exclusive of his bravery, is a very good character. " The committee, it is believed, presented Mr. Marks with a handsome sum of money. Acts like this of Lieutenant Rowed and his four men (the names of all of whom we would record, did we know them) deserve to be made public, if only for the example they hold out, not of adequate reward certainly, but of the impunity which often accompanies the most hazardous attacks. Let him, therefore, who is disposed to calculate the chances of personal risk that may attend the enterprise in which he is called upon to embark, reflect upon the 49 musket-balls which were aimed at, and yet missed, Lieutenant Rowed and the four gallant fellows who were on board of this captured French chasse-marée.
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