|Naval history of Great Britain
||Boats of Colpoys at Avillas and Douillan
boats could get to the chasse-marťes, Lieutenant Ussher, with 12 men from each brig, landed, and, after a short skirmish, got possession of, and spiked, the two guns, which were long 12-pounders. Lieutenant Ussher afterwards brought the vessels down the river, and destroyed the signal-post of Douillan ; accomplishing the whole of this daring and important service without the slightest loss, or any greater damage to the two brigs than that done to their standing and running rigging, while engaged with the battery previously to its destruction by the two boats' crews. For his gallantry upon this and several previous occasions, Lieutenant Ussher, on the 18th of the following October, was promoted to the rank of commander.
On the 24th of March, at 1 P.M., Cape Roxo, in the island of Porto-Rico, bearing north by west distant 16 leagues, the British 18-gun brig-sloop Reindeer (sixteen 32-pounder carronades and two long sixes), Captain John Fyffe, standing on the starboard tack, with the wind at south-south-east, discovered two men-of war brigs speaking each other in the south-east quarter. The Reindeer immediately stood towards them, and at 1 h. 40 m. P.M. showed her colours, and made the strangers out to be enemy's cruisers. They were the French brig-corvettes PhaŽton, Lieutenant Louis-Henri Freycinet-Saulce and Voltigeur, Lieutenant Jacques Saint-Crieq of 16 long 6-pounders, and 115 men each.
At 2 P.M. the Voltigeur, hoisting her colours, passed to leeward of, and fired her broadside at the Reindeer ; while the PhaŽton, having also hoisted her colours, together with a commodore's pendant, kept her wind. For the latter the Reindeer immediately tacked ; and, in crossing her on the opposite board, poured in a heavy fire, which was promptly returned by the PhaŽton. The British brig continued tacking, and alternately exchanging broadsides with the two French brigs until dark ; when, having the leech of her foresail and the clew of her fore topsail shot away, and the jib-canvass and most of the running rigging much cut, and the weather becoming thick and squally, the Reindeer was unable to go about for nearly a quarter of an hour. Meanwhile, having doubtless felt the effects of the latter's 32-pound shot, and being, as it afterwards appeared, on their way to the squadron of M. Leissegues supposed to be still in Santo-Domingo roads, the PhaŽton and Voltigeur had made sail. So that at 7 P.M., when the Reindeer tacked in pursuit, the two French brigs were no longer visible.
With the exception of a few shot-holes in her hull, the Reindeer's damages were confined to her rigging and sails, and she escaped without any loss on the part of her crew. What damage or loss was sustained by her two opponents could not of course be ascertained ; but it was afterwards understood, that the PhaŽton had suffered from it, as well in men, as in masts, rigging, and hull.
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