HMS Cherub (1806)

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HMS Cherub was an 18-gun Royal Navy Cormorant-class sloop built in Dover in 1806.

West Indies and Pacific service

Cherub was stationed in the West Indies and took part in the capture of Guadeloupe in 1810 and remained on the Leeward Islands station until 1812. That year she returned to England with a convoy for a refit. In December 1812, she sailed for the Pacific Ocean. In 1813, she joined with HMS Phoebe and HMS Racoon and in company they sailed to the Galapagos Islands. Then Racoon was detached to attack American fur traders on the Columbia River while Phoebe and Cherub searched for the American frigate, USS Essex which had been attacking the British whaling fleet in the Pacific.

Capture of the Essex

On 8 February 1814, the Phoebe and Cherub found the Essex at Valparaiso. They waited off the port for Essex to come out. On the afternoon of 28 March, the Essex sailed but she lost her main topmast and anchored near the shore. Pheobe and Cherub also anchored and opened fire. The British were armed with long cannons which were more effective at a longer range than the American armament of carronades. As the British anchored out of effective range of the American carronades, the battle was very one-sided and lasted for an hour until the American captain struck his colours with 23 dead and 42 wounded on board. On the British ships only five were killed.

Cherub was eventually sold out of the service in 1820.