Sunday, October 30, 2011

Captain George Downie

 A passage in the Battles of the British navy described how Captain George Downie died in the Battle of Plattsburg:

This gallant officer met his death in the following manner.  A shot from the Saratoga striking one of the 24 pounder carronades on board Confiance knocked it completely off the slide against the captain, who was standing close in the rear of it. He received the blow upon right groin and although signs of life were exhibited for a few minutes he never spoke afterward.  No part of his skin was broken and a black mark of about the circumference of a small plate was the only visible hurt sustained.  His watch was perfectly flattened and was found with the hands pointing to the hour, minute, and second at which the fatal hurt was received.

From The Outlook:

Of George Downie we know little. He was born in Ross, Ireland; he entered the British navy at an early age; in 1812 he was given command of the British fleet on the Lakes; he was killed in the Battle of Plattsburgh on September 11 1814.

Downie's genealogy according to this source (also the carronades link):

Captain George Downie 1778-1814

George Downie was the eighth son of the Reverend John Downie. He was a twin of Hector, born on 19 January 1778, almost certainly at Tong, Stornoway where his father lived.

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