Monday, February 14, 2005

English Captain: William Hill

William Hill served in the Commonwealth navy. From 1652 to 1653, he commanded the 4th Rate Sapphire (34 guns). He fought at the Battle of Dungeness in the Sapphire. In early 1653, he was at the Battle of Portland. In 1653 he commanded the 4th Rate Diamond (42 guns) and fought at the Battle of the Gabbard in the Generals' division. He was also very likely at the Battle of Scheveningen. From 1653 to 1655, he commanded the small 3rd Rate Worcester. In November, he commanded a squadron of 6 frigates which were assigned to look for the French squadron. Blake was dissatisfied with his performance and replaced him with another squadron of 5 ships. In early 1655, he reconnoitered Tunis and considered a boat attack, but eventually settled for a blockade. In 1656, he commanded the Speaker, and then resigned, as he refused to fight the Spanish, except in the Channel. Sources:
  1. R. C. Anderson, "English Fleet-Lists in the First Dutch War," The Mariner's Mirror, Vol.XXIV No.4, October 1938.
  2. R. C. Anderson, List of English Naval Captains 1642-1660, 1964.
  3. Michael Baumber, General-at-Sea, 1989.

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