DIARYINTRO & PHOTOS3 - 4 - 190118 - 8 - 19011 - 1 - 1902
1 - 5 - 19022 - 7 - 19021 - 10 - 19021 - 1 - 19031 - 4 - 1903

 

HMS PERSEUS DIARY - 3rd April 1901 to 17th August 1901

 

H.M.S. Perseus was commissioned at Chatham on the morning of the 7th March 1901

From that date the ships company took advantage of the weekend leave to wish goodbye to all their beloved ones.

 

On April 3rd we left Chatham for Sheerness to adjust compasses & for Admirals inspection.

April 4th we successfully carried out our commissioning trial & coaled in Sheerness 120 tons. From that date till April 11th time was occupied on cleaning ship thoroughly in readiness for inspection

 

April 11th       Admiral very pleased with the cleanliness of ship & for the smartness of crew and general appearance.

 

Till April 23rd the dockyard officials were aboard engaged in repairing dynamos, which had developed defects.

 

April 23rd     At 10 am slipped the buoy and proceeded on our journey to the East Indies Station. We had an enthusiastic send off. Our drum & fife band was playing Auld Lang Sein as we passed out the harbour & then we passed out of sight of Old England.

On our journey to Gibraltar the crews were exercised every day at the various evolutions.

 

April 27th     After a splendid passage we arrived at Gibraltar on the 27th at 9.45 pm & moored alongside of the Mole.

 

28th              Being Sunday the crew went to divine service at the Soldiers Chapel, in the evening we prepared ship for coaling

 

29th             We coaled ship the natives carrying the coal to the gangway & the ships company completing the work. We took in 250 tons.

We left Gibraltar at 7 pm on the 29th for Malta

 

30th           Aiming practice was carried out by the guns crews

 

2nd May    Crews exercised at small arms companies during day & in the evening we were exercised at night quarters at 10 pm.

 

3rd at 7.15 am saw us safely anchored in Malta harbour where we tied up to a buoy.

The Mediterranean Fleet were also in harbour. We did not remain long at Malta for we were wanted to relieve the Racoon as quick as we could and at 7pm on the 4th we left Malta for Port Said.

 

On the 6th we eased down & completed half a quarters firing which was done very well and during the first watch we carried out night firing which was attended with success, Guns and crews making good practice.

 

8th Early during the morning we arrived at Port Said and by 7.15 am we were safely moored. H.M.S. Rupert was here, guardship. We then prepared for coaling and took in 250 tons in very quick time. The seamen did not coal, as natives were very plentiful. 1 pm saw us slipping the buoy & we then started on our voyage through the famous Suez Canal. At sunset searchlights were burnt to show the banks of the Canal, as navigation is dangerous. At 8 pm we entered the Bitter Lakes and we anchored at Ishmaile & we gave our first concert, which proved a good success.

 

9th      We were about early and at 6.45 am the anchor was weighed & we proceeded on our journey through the Canal. At 3 pm we left the Canal and arrived off Suez, but we did not stop but proceeded on our journey to Aden. The weather was now getting very hot & being as it was very cold when we left England we felt the heat very much. We were now getting near the beginning of our station and at 8 am of the morning of the 14th saw us safely moored in Aden. Well we had now arrived on our station and in the harbour H.M.S. Racoon which ship we were relieving was awaiting us. She was under orders for England to pay off.

 

16th     We coaled ship today taking in 200 tons. The crew were greatly amused here by the little boys fearlessly diving for money although the harbour is infested with sharks.

In the evening supernumeries from Racoon came on board.

 

17th     Employed in cleaning ship & at 5 pm we manned ship for H.M.S. Racoon was leaving for home, as she passed we cheered her & she had an enthusiastic send off

 

18th     Crew again manned ship & as an Italian warship left the harbour cheers were given & received for she also was proceeding to pay off. We were now the only man o’ war in the harbour, but during the evening we received sailing orders and we prepared for sea as we were to leave on arrival of mail.

 

19th     Sunday at 10 am H.M.S. Pigeon arrived here. She was sent to await her relief.

The mail arrived afternoon & at 8 pm we left Aden for Karachi

 

21st      Crews exercised at general quarters & other evolutions.

 

22nd    Aired bedding & afterwards mustered bedding

 

23rd     Exercised small arms companies.

 

On the morning of the 24th a suspicious looking Dhow was sighted and we at once headed for her a cutter was manned for boarding her if she could not account for herself being in that part. We got within speaking distance of her & she turned out to be a coasting dhow bound from Muscat to Bombay. We then let her go & proceeded on our journey to Karachi where we safely arrived at 6.30 pm.

We man & arm boats on the morning of the 26th & afterwards we prepared ship for coaling.

 

27th     Beached all boats and coaled ship 175 tons

On the 30th Maxim gun crews were exercised ashore at Manora, which is at the entrance to Karachi harbour. Remainder of crew being employed in scrubbing down. Mail left at 4pm for England.

We were given leave every evening here and we had good times ashore with the West Yorks. Reg.

 

3rd June,      we got the bower anchors out & we received sailing orders. Prepared for sea & left Karachi at 6 pm for the dreaded Persian Gulf. We had a good passage crews being exercised at small arms companies and cannon tube firing.

 

On the 5th we carried out and completed qtrs. firing. Shooting was good.

 

On the 6th we arrived & anchored at Muscat, which is at the entrance of the Persian Gulf in the Gulf of Oman. We did not stop long for at 6 pm we weighed anchor and proceeded to Jask.

 

Arrived Jask 7th landed mail & left at 7.30 am for Bushire to relieve H.M.S. Cossack who was ordered south. H.M.S. Assaye at Jask

 

On the 9th we arrived at Bushire where we found H.M.S. Marathon anchored. We anchored about 4 mile off shore, as anchorage is bad here.

We did not remain long for at 5.30 pm we got under weigh & proceeded to Koweit where we expected to find the Cossack

 

10th    We fired torpedoes at sea & arrived at Koweit at noon where the Cossack was awaiting us. We anchored & she at once sent off an invitation to our ships company to attend a concert on board. Of course we accepted and an enjoyable evening was spent

 

11th    Cossack left for Bombay

Boats crews were exercised at boat sailing during evening.

 

12th   We cleaned ship for action and afterwards exercised general quarters. Time at Koweit was very monotonous as there was only a few huts to be seen everything else was desert sand. The weather was very trying being very hot with hot winds & the atmosphere at night was very damp. There is no harbour we anchored about 2 miles off.

The only thing to break the spell is the arrival of the mail boat on Sundays.

 

On 17th we man and arm boats. Mrs Pears health drank being her birthday. We were now employed painting ship till the 21st when we went to general quarters & had cannon tube firing. Great sadness prevailed onboard on account of the death of J. Ford P.O. First class, from the dreaded fever. He was well liked on board & all hands missed him very much.

 

2nd We weighed anchor & proceeded to sea where poor Ford was buried with naval honours ships company very much affected by the ceremony.

 

3rd Arrived Bushire where H.M.S. Marathon was at anchor. We took on board her steam pipe, which had developed defects & proceeded to Karachi.

Arrived at Karachi 8th and all got ready for 24 hrs general leave as we had no leave up the Gulf.

 

10th Coaled ship 250 tons. Leave granted to ship’s company by watches 28 hrs.

 

12th At 6pm we received a telegram to the effect that we were again needed up the Gulf

 

13th Left Karachi at 6.30am for Koweit. We had rather a rough passage.

 

We arrived at Bushire on 16th. Our stay here was short.

 

On the 17th we left Bushire for Koweit & arrived there at 11.30 am on the 18th. We now eagerly watched events as trouble was going on at Koweit between the Turks from Bussorah & the native Sheik & we were here to prevent attack by the former.

 

At noon on the 23rd signalman espied a strange vessel hovering around the horizon & the Perseus at once raised steam & went after her. We soon overhauled her. She was a Turkish man o’ war. She was hove to. Our captain at once boarded her & her captain said that he had troops & stores to land at Koweit. Our captain informed the Turk that if he attempted to land at Koweit we should take action to prevent him from doing so. The Turk replied that he was going to obey orders & he preceded us into Koweit. We anchored close off her but when it was dusk she weighed anchor & proceeded nearer town for the purpose of landing troops. But the Perseus was on her again & anchored near. We now burned searchlights & from us it looked as though she was prepared to land. We man & arm ship. Guns crews slept at their post all night. In the morning her captain came on board us & informed our captain that he had abandoned the idea of landing for the present & wished to proceed to Fas (Jac) to get more ships. We let him go & he left Koweit on the 25th. We now sent telegrams to the Admiral, the mail boat which happened to be here, taking them to Bushire, asking for more ships as we were the only ship up the Gulf except the dispatch boat Sphinx.

 

Our time now came to do our quarterly firing so on the 17th August we left Koweit for a few days & proceeded to Kharag Island.

 

DIARYINTRO & PHOTOS3 - 4 - 190118 - 8 - 19011 - 1 - 1902
1 - 5 - 19022 - 7 - 19021 - 10 - 19021 - 1 - 19031 - 4 - 1903