Grasshopper brig


The ship in history

The Grasshopper, second of that name, was constructed as an 18-gun Cruiser Class brig of war, and launched at Hythe (England) in 1806. Her length on gun deck was 100 feet, her breadth 30' 6" and she carried a crew of 121 men.

For sixteen years she was almost constantly at sea, worked hard by both the British Navy and, later, the Dutch Navy, with a short period between under the French flag.

She fought until 1811 under the British flag, defending the British Empire in many places like Cartagena (Colombia) against French and Spanish vessels, Cadiz (Spain), Faro (Portugal), silencing batteries, capturing gun-boats, making prizes of merchantmen, and protecting convoys. 

In 1811, on Christmas day, a powerful storm stranded her, along with the 74 gun Hero and the transport Archimedes, on the Haaks Sands, off Texel, a Dutch coastal island. While the other two ships were destroyed, she was luckier but still had no choice but to surrender to the Dutch, who were then part of the French Empire. Her name was changed to the Irene in 1813, before the end of the French domination in 1814. 

She remained in the Nieuwediep Squadron and even though her recorded activity was limited, a chase after enemy ships gave her the reputation of being the best sailer in the squadron. 

From 1814 to 1821, she resumed activity from the West to the East Indies, through the Mediterranean, mainly escorting merchantmen.

She was broken up in Flushing (the Netherlands) in 1822. 

Grasshopper in history

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