A Naval Biographical Dictionary/Falcon, Gordon Thomas

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FALCON. (Captain, 1813. f-p., 32; h-p., 21.)

Gordon Thomas Falcon entered the Navy, in 1794, as A.B., on board the Sheerness, Capt. Wm. Geo. Fairfax, flag-ship in the Channel of Rear-Admiral Henry Harvey, but soon attained the rating of Midshipman, and accompanied the former officer into the Repulse and Venerable 74’s, the latter bearing the flag of Admiral Duncan, whom, after participating in the battle off Camperdown 11 Oct. 1797, he followed into the Kent 74; during his attachment to which ship he appears to have been lent, for three months in 1798, as Acting-Lieutenant, to the Champion 20, Capt. Henry Raper. In May and Sept. 1799 he successively joined, in the same capacity, the Busy 18, and Hyaena frigate, Capts. John Acworth Ommanney and David Lloyd; and, on 15 May, 1800, he was confirmed into the Wright armed-ship, Capt. Thos. Campbell. His subsequent appointments as Lieutenant were, on the West India, North America, and Lisbon stations – 23 Aug. 1800, to the Andromeda 32 Capts. Jas. Bradby and Edw. Durnford King – 9 June, 1802, and 21 July, 1803, to the Cambrian 40, and Leander 50, flag-ships of Sir Andrew Mitchell – and, in 1806-8-9, to the Leopard 50, Barfleur 98, Ganges 78, and Barfleur again, bearing each the flag of Hon. Geo. Cranfield Berkeley. While in the Leander Mr. Falcon assisted, under Capt. John Talbot, at the capture, 23 Feb. 1805, of La Ville de Milan French frigate, of 46 guns, and the simultaneous re-capture of her prize, the Cleopatra 32; and, when with Capt. Salusbury Pryce Humphreys in the Leopard, he was one of the officers sent to search the United States’ frigate Chesapeake for deserters, after that vessel had struck her colours, 22 March, 1807 22 June, 1807 [errata 1]. On 8 March, 1811, while acting as Captain of the Macedonian 38, he was made Commander into the Melpomene troop-ship. Attaining Post-rank 29 Oct. 1813, he soon afterwards joined the Leander 50, and, on 14 March, 1814, obtained command of the Cyane, of 32 guns and 171 men. After a furious action off Madeira, in which, besides being much cut to pieces, she sustained a loss of 6 men killed and 13 wounded, the latter vessel, together with her consort, the Levant, of 20 guns and 131 men, was unfortunately captured by the American ship Constitution, of 54 guns and 469 men, 20 Feb. 1815. Capt. Falcon consequently became a prisoner of war, but, peace soon restoring him to liberty, he returned home, and was afterwards appointed – 24 June, 1817, to the Tyne 26, in which vessel, in Oct. 1820, he brought from South America to England specie to the amount of nearly 700,000l. – 1 March, 1823, to the Isis 50, lying at Chatham – 23 June, 1823, and 21 Aug. 1825, to the Spartiate 76, and Wellesley 74, flag-ships of Sir Geo. Eyre, on the South American station – and, 1 May, 1833, and 5 Sept. 1835, to the San Josef 110, and Royal Adelaide 104, bearing each the flag of Sir Wm. Hargood, Commander-in-Chief at Plymouth, where he continued until paid off, 30 April, 1836. Since 17 Feb. 1845 he has been employed as Captain of the Royal Sovereign yacht, and Superintendent of the Dockyard at Pembroke.

Capt. Falcon married, 7 Oct. 1834, Louisa, widow of the late Capt. Cursham, and daughter of the late Rich. Meyrick, Esq., of Runkton, co. Sussex, by whom he has issue. Agents – Messrs. Ommanney.


Addendum:

FALCON. (Rear-Admiral, of the Blue, 1848.)

Gordon Thomas Falcon was at the blockade of the Dutch coast in the Sheerness; and in the Andromeda at the taking of the Danish and Swedish islands in the West Indies in 1801. He was First-Lieutenant of the Barfleur when Lord Wellington occupied the lines of Torres Vedras. His promotion to Flag-rank took place 1 Aug. 1848; on which occasion he was superseded in the Superintendentship of Pembroke Dockyard.


  1. Original: 22 March, 1807 was amended to 22 June, 1807 : detail