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Extract from Nelson’s journal on board HMS Theseus for 25 July 1797

Catalogue reference: ADM 1/396

Month & Days Week days   Winds
Bearings &
Dist[ance] at noon
Remarks etc on
25th   E[ast]
      Santa Cruz
10 or 12 Miles

Calm in Shore
Strong Gales & clear Weather. At 1 O Clock made the General Signal to Anchor at ½ past 5-the Squadron Anchor’d a few Miles to the Northward of Santa Cruz At 6 made the Signal for Boats to proceed on Service as previously order’d-at 11 between 600 & 700 Men were in the Boats of the Squadron. 100 Men on board the Fox Cutter and about 70 or 80 men in a Boat we had taken, who proceeded in 6 Divisions under Captains Troubridge, Hood, Thompson, Miller & Walker, Captains Freemantle & Bowen attending me to regulate and lead the Attack-AM at ½ past 1 We got within half Gun shot of the Mole Head without being discovered, when the Alarm bells rang and 30 or 40 Pieces of Cannon with Musketry from one end of the Town to the other open’d on us, the Night being excessively dark it was only myself, Captns Thompson, Fremantle and Bowen, with 4 or 5 Boats in the whole who found the Mole, which was instantly Storm’d & carried apparently by 4 or 500 men, and the Guns 6-24 Pounders Spiked, but such a heavy Fire of Musketry and Grape Shot, was kept up from the Citadel, & Houses at the Head of the Mole that we could not advance, and we were all nearly all killed and Wounded.

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