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Such vessels had been used in Bermuda since 1609 but the Royal Navy only discovered them in 1795.

Hurd was later joined by Andrew Evans (both Hurd and Evans were later promoted to Captains).

Three more Bermudian vessels purchased from local shipyards were commissioned by the Royal Navy.

They were cedar-built 200 ton,12-gun sloops-of-war, commissioned as HMS Dasher, HMS Driver and HMS Bermuda. One of the first acquisitions of the Royal Navy in Bermuda in an area removed from Castle Harbour was the purchase of a then-small house on the North Shore of Bermuda, with some uniquely valuable land. George Murray, RN, arrived in Bermuda on HMS Resolution.

What made it attractive for the Navy to purchase Seven Wells was the fact that (a) it had seven wells of fresh water immediately available for Royal Navy purposes and (b) was located adjacent to Devonshire Dock, from where the fresh water could be taken in barrels to ships-of-war.1795. It was accompanied by HMS Cleopatra and HMS Thesly.

Other files on Bermuda by this author relating to military matters and civil aviation include Airlines serving Bermuda - American Bases in Bermuda from 1941 to 1995 - Bermuda Aviation History Pioneers Civilian and Military - Bermuda International Airport. As it looks today, a far cry from its original purpose dating back to 1795 as a fortified Royal Navy Dockyard following Britain's defeat by the USA in the 1776 to 1783 American Revolution. Lieutenant Thomas Hurd, Royal Navy, was told he was going to lead what became 11-year survey of Bermuda as a potential Royal Navy base, to replace the reliance on Halifax which was vulnerable to attack from America. Then-Captain Thomas Hurd completed his 11-year planned survey of Bermuda. The resulting report described the new anchorage as having capacity enough for all the Navies in the World to ride in from 7 to 9 or 10 fathoms.1794.

HMS Cleopatra (Captain Penrose) transited the Narrows to Murray's Anchorage. With the Militia Act 1794 and the end of the American War of Independence, Bermuda began to assume an importance to the Admiralty that would see it become the base of the North America and West Indies Squadron, and the site of the only full Naval dockyard West of Portsmouth, England except for Halifax in Nova Scotia and of possibly more strategic importance in the event of invasion of Canada by the USA.

Following the visit of and survey ordered by Admiral Murray, Ireland Island in Bermuda was formally selected for the establishment of a Royal Naval Dockyard.

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01-Jan-2020 18:41