Thursday, October 27, 2005

English Captain: Edmund Seaman

Edmund Seaman seems to have served in both the Commonwealth and Restoration navies. In 1644 and 1645, he had commanded the hired merchantman Honour (26 guns, a crew of 108 men, and 359 tons). He was in the Summer Guard for 1644. In 1646, he commanded the hired merchantman Samuel. In 1653, he commanded the hired merchantman Samson (40 guns). He fought in the Battle of Livorno on 4 March 1653. He was assigned to Henry Appleton's division. His ship was burnt by a Dutch fireship, after being at the point of surrendering to Cornelis Tromp in the Maan (40 guns). Edmund Seaman was one of only 42 men to survive out of a crew of 130 men. After the Restoration, he definitely commanded the Centurion in 1665. It appears from an entry in Sir Thomas Allin's Journal, that he commanded the Richard and Martha in June 1663. Perhaps he was in the merchant service at that date. He was operating in home waters at that time. In 1666, he commanded the 2nd Rate Old James. He fought in the Four Days' Battle in 1666, where he was assigned to Sir Joseph Jordan's division in the Red Squadron. On 25 July 1666, he fought in the St. James's Day Battle, where he was assigned to Sir Thomas Allin's division in the White Squadron. 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, The Journals of Sir Thomas Allin, Vol.I 1660-1666, 1939.
  3. R. C. Anderson, List of English Naval Captains 1642-1660, 1964.
  4. Frank Fox, A Distant Storm: the Four Days' Battle of 1666, 1996.
  5. J.R. Tanner, A Descriptive Catalogue of the Naval Manuscripts in the Pepysian Library at Magdalene College, Cambridge, Vol.I, 1903.

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