Cobbs in the Royal Navy


This excerpt from my family tree shows three Royal Navy officers from one Cobb family, just five generations back from today.

This summer there is a massive ongoing celebration of Trafalgar (last week they set off twice as many fireworks as at the Olympics last year). As part of this event, the British Archives have created a site that lets you search to see who was at Trafalgar:
http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/trafalgarancestors/

Sure enough, as you might expect from such a sea-faring family, there was a Cobb at Trafalgar. Charles Cobb, born in 1788, was aged 18 at the time. He fought on the HMS Phoebe under Captain Hon. Thomas Capel. Charles Cobb went on to become First Lieutenant on the HMS Castilian and he was killed in action against the French off the coast of Boulogne in September 1811, at the age of 23. His older brother, Smith Cobb, was also in the Royal Navy and his younger brother, Thomas Cobb, went on to become an officer of the 70-gun two-decker warship, H.M.S. Sterling Castle.

I am grateful to Chris Cobb for letting me know that Charles' brother, Capt. Smith Cobb served as Captain of HM sloop Onyx. Apparently, several letters that he wrote to the British Admiralty survived, including one "justifying the issue of two barrels of Rum after a hard nights action." Sounds like my kind of Captain!

Also, the younger brother Thomas was on board the Onyx at that time and ranked as an Assistant Bosun then as a Midshipman. Commander Thomas Cobb rose to the rank of Lieutenant and Chris writes "On retirement in 1824 he was promoted from Midshipman to Lieutenant. He was just a Midshipman when serving aboard HMS Stirling Castle under the Captainship of firstly Sir Home Popham then Capt Wm. Butterfield from Feb 1813 to Aug 1814."

On a personal note, my father, Cyril Cobb, served in the Royal Navy in World War Two.


This page updated Summer, 2005 by webbloke at cobb dot com © Copyright, 1996-2005, S. Cobb