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Bell's Weekly Messenger, No.1809, Sunday, November 28, 1830

From Tuesday's London Gazette

Admiralty Office, Nov. 23.

Captain Gordon, of his Majesty's ship Atholl, has transmitted to the Right Hon. John Wilson Croker a letter from Commander William Broughton, of his Majesty's sloop Primrose, to Capt. Gordon, dated at the Island of Ascension, Oct. 5, 1830, of which the following is an extract:—

"Proceeding in execution of your orders of the 3d September, I had the good fortune to fall in, at 11.30 pm. on the 6th of that month, with the Spanish ship Velos Passagera, Jose Antonio de la Vega Master, from Wydah, bound to Havannah, pierced for 28 guns, but having only 20 mounted, and from the officer whom I sent to board her not being allowed to examine her below, as usual, I concluded she had slaves on board. Finding I had much the advantage of her in sailing, and wishing to avoid the effusion of blood by a night action with a vessel crowded with slaves, I remained by her until morning, when, being within hail, and still resolutely refused permission to search her, we opened our fire, which she returned immediately, the ships nearly touching each other; after the second broadside, we laid her on board, and in ten minutes carried her, with a loss on our side of three killed and twelve wounded; the Velos had 46 killed and 20 wounded, out of a crew of, as near as I could ascertain, 150 men, of different nations, and having on board 555 slaves, five of whom were killed.

Being myself wounded in the act of boarding, my place was ably taken by Lieut. Butterfield, seconded by Acting Lieut. Foley, Mr. Fraser, Acting Master, and Mr. Bentham, Midshipman, to each of whom I feel deeply indebted for their zealous exertions; as also to Mr. Williamson, Acting Purser, who rendered his services on deck during the action; and I feel myself called upon to notice in particular the Acting Surgeon Mr. Lane, who, though dangerously ill, exerted himself in an extraordinary manner in his attention to the wounded, having no assistance on board. I cannot speak too highly in praise of the gallantry and good conduct of the Warrant and Petty Officers and ship's company, who distinguished themselves not only for their steadiness in action, but for their great personal exertions in refitting the two ships afterwards.

I enclose a list of killed and wounded.

Return of killed and wounded.

Killed—James Graham, seaman; Wm. Bunker, marine; Benjamin Allen, marine.

Wounded—Commander Broughton, severely; Mr. Fraser, Master, severely; Mr. Bentham, Midshipman, slightly; Mr. Watts, boatswain; dangerously; Mark Denick, marine, dangerously; George Martin, seaman, slightly; H. Amery, seaman, severely; W. Rust, seaman, slightly; John Compton, seaman, slightly; John Owens, seaman, slightly; Thomas Walker, marine, severely; Henry Stephens, marine, slightly.

N.B. I am happy to add that Commander Broughton and the officers who were wounded, are quite recovered, with the exception of Mr. Watts, the boatswain, who is still in a dangerous state.

(Signed) A. Gordon, Captain.