The loss of HMS Captain in 1870
The loss of HMS Captain in 1870


The Royal Navy
The Royal Navy


On 7 September 1870 this revolutionary low freeboard, but heavily masted, ironclad turret frigate capsized and sank off cape Finisterre with the loss of nearly 500 lives in a moderate storm which gave no problems to the other ships in the squadron. Captain was designed by the visionary Captain Cowper Phipps Coles, built by Laird's shipyard in Birkenhead, and commissioned in 1869, all in response to parliamentary and public pressure in support of this radical concept, despite strong objections from the Controller of the Royal Navy and the Chief Constructor, Edward James Reed.


Extracts from the Times newspaper
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