A Naval Biographical Dictionary/Boxer, Edward

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BOXER, C.B. (Capt., 1823. f-p., 32; h-p., 17.)

Edward Boxer, born at Dover in 1784, is brother of Capt. Jas. Boxer, R.N.

This officer entered the Navy, 1 July, 1798, as A.B., on board the Doris 36, Capt. Lord Viscount Ranelagh, in which ship he soon attained the rating of Midshipman, and continued to serve under Capts. John Halliday and Chas. Brisbane until Jan. 1802. During that period, on the night of 21 July, 1801, he served in her boats, with those of the Beaulieu and Uranie, all commanded by Lieut. Keith Maxwell, at the cutting out, under the batteries in Camaret Bay, near Brest, a position deemed almost impregnable, of La Chevrette corvette, of 20 long nine-pounders and 350 men, after an heroic conflict in which the enemy lost their Captain, 6 other officers, and 85 men killed, and 1 Lieutenant, 4 Midshipmen, and 57 men wounded; and the British, 1 Lieutenant R.M., 1 Midshipman, and 9 men slain, and 2 Lieutenants, 1 Master’s Mate, 3 Midshipmen, and 51 men wounded. Mr. Boxer next accompanied Capt. Brisbane, in the Trent 36, to the West Indies, and, after a three years’ attachment with that officer to the Goliath 74, followed him, in July, 1805, as Master’s Mate, into the Arethusa 38. On 28 June, 1803, while in the Goliath, he assisted at the taking of the 18-gun corvette La Mignonne, near the west end of St. Domingo. We subsequently find him serving in L’Unité 38, Capt. Chas. Ogle, on the Mediterranean station – in the Ocean 98, bearing the flag off Cadiz of Lord Collingwood – and, from 28 Sept. 1806, until confirmed, 8 Jan. 1807, as Acting-Lieutenant in the Sophie sloop, Capt. Wm. Mansell, and Tigre 80, Capt. Benj. Hallowell. During the expedition to Egypt, in March, 1807, Lieut. Boxer commanded a detachment of seamen landed to co-operate with the army under Major-General Thos. Fraser;[1]and, at night, on 31 Oct. 1809, he headed, with great credit to himself, a division of boats at the capture and destruction, in face of the most desperate opposition, occasioning the British a loss of 15 killed and 55 wounded, of the French store-ship Lamproie of 16 guns and 116 men, bombards Victoire and Grandeur, and armed xebec Normande, with a convoy of seven merchant vessels, defended by numerous strong batteries in the Bay of Rosas.[2] From the Tigre he removed, with Capt. Hallowell, on the latter hoisting his flag as Rear-Admiral, to the Malta of 84 guns, 28 Oct. 1811; and from that period he continued to be employed, under the same officer, in the capacity of First-Lieutenant (except for about a month in the summer of 1813, when he assumed temporary charge of the Volcano bomb), until appointed, 5 Oct. 1814, to the acting-command of the Wizard brig, which he left shortly previous to the receipt of his second Admiralty commission, 1 March, 1815. Capt. Boxer – who had the direction of all the gun-boats under the orders of Rear-Admiral Hallowell at the siege of Tarragona in 1813 – was next appointed, 6 Sept. 1822, to the Sparrowhawk 18, on the Halifax promotion, whence he was superseded on advancement to his present rank, 23 June, 1823. He became an Inspecting-Commander in the Coast Guard in July, 1824; served, from 23 Feb. 1827, until July, 1830, as Flag-Captain at Halifax to Sir Chas. Ogle, in the Hussar 46; and, from 3 Aug. 1837, until Aug. 1841, commanded the Pique 36, on the North America, West India, and Mediterranean stations. For his services on the coast of Syria in 1840 – where, by the unceasing gallantry of his exertions, he proved of material assistance in the operations against Caiffa, Jaffa, and Tsour, and where, with Capt. Henry John Codrington, he so excellently superintended, prior to the bombardment of St. Jean d’Acre, the sounding and buoying-off of the channels leading to the batteries, as to enable the ships to go in without risk of getting ashore – Capt. Boxer was nominated, 18 Dec. in the same year, a C.B., and presented, in common with the other officers of his rank employed, with the Turkish gold medal.[3] He was appointed, 24 Aug. 1843, Resident Agent for Transports and Harbour-Master at Quebec, where he still continues.

Capt. Boxer, whose wife died 25 Jan. 1826, has, with other issue, an eldest son, James Fuller, Master R.N., married to Matilda Mary, eldest daughter of T. Sturdee, Esq., of the Naval Yard at Portsmouth; and a third son, Edward, married, in 1843, to Eleanor, daughter of the late Lieut.-Colonel Payne, Royal Artillery. Agents – Messrs. Halford and Co.

  1. Vide Gaz. 1807, p. 617.
  2. Vide Gaz. 1809, p. 1907.
  3. Vide Gaz. 1840, pp. 2601, 2602, 2900.