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A Naval Biographical Dictionary/Ferris, Thomas

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FERRIS. (Commander, 1815. f-p., 17; h-p., 29.)

Thomas Ferris entered the Navy, 20 Feb. 1801, as a Boy, on board the Edgar 74, Capt. Edw. Buller, with whom, and Capt. Jas. Wallis, he afterwards served, in the Achille 74, on the Channel and Irish stations, latterly as Midshipman, until May, 1802. From the following Sept. until promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, 19 Oct. 1807, we find him employed under Sir Rich. John Strachan in the Donegal and Renown 74’s, and in the Caesar 80. He assisted during that period in the Donegal’s capture, in 1804, of the Spanish 44-gun frigate Amfitrite, and of a ship with a cargo on board worth 200,000l., and was present, in the Caesar, at the capture, 4 Nov. 1805, of the four line-of-battle ships escaped from Trafalgar, as also, we believe, at the destruction, 14 Sept. 1806, off Cape Henry, of the 74-gun ship Impétueux. Rejoining, 8 March, 1808, the Donegal, then commanded by Capt. Pulteney Malcolm, Mr. Ferris escorted, in the following summer, Sir Arthur Wellesley’s army from Cork to Portugal – was present at the destruction, 24 Feb. 1809, of three French frigates under the batteries of Sable d’Olonne – witnessed the ensuing discomfiture of the French shipping in Aix Roads – and assisted in an attack made by Capt. Chas. Grant, of the Diana, on the two French frigates Amazone and Eliza, protected by the fire of several strong batteries, near Cherbourg, 15 Nov. 1810. After a further servitude of a few months with Capt. Malcolm in the Royal Oak 74, he was appointed, 3 March, 1812, to the Hannibal 74, Capt. Sir Michael Seymour; and while in that ship he contributed to the capture, 26 March, 1814, of La Sultane, of 44 guns and 330 men. On leaving the Hannibal he became First-Lieutenant, 5 Sept. 1814, of the Tanais 38, Capt. Joseph James, in which frigate he served, on the Irish and Jamaica stations, until his return home in March, 1816. He then took up his commission as Commander, having been advanced to that rank on 20 Sept. 1815. With the exception of an appointment in the Coast Guard, which he held from 6 July, 1830, until the year 1833, he has since been on half-pay.