Vice Admiral Sir Samuel Philip Townsend (6C01)

Date of Birth: 30 Jul 1831
Date of Death: 16 Jun 1920
Generation: 6th
Residence: Fareham, Hants
Father: Doctor Edward Richard Townsend [6C00]
Mother: Bath, Elizabeth Jane
  1. Bridges, Emma Maria
  1. Captain Edward Bridges [6C10]
  2. Neville Frederick [6C11]
  3. Reverend Ernest Horace [6C12]
  4. Lieut Colonel Cuthbert Hanson [6C13]
  5. Admiral Cyril Samuel [6C14]
  6. Constance Emma [6C15]
See Also: Table VIC ; Scrapbook ; Lineage ; Ancestors' Tree ; Descendents' Tree

Notes for Vice Admiral Sir Samuel Philip Townsend RN. See also ‘Officers in Command’

Married 24 April 1860 at St Pancras, London. Emma Maria Bridges (1) was a twin daughter of John William Bridges of Birch, Essex.

Samuel joined the Royal Navy in 1844 as a Midshipman and served on HMS Dragon after commissioning in 1845. He was promoted Lieutenant on 21 May 1852 and served on HMS Sans Pareil during the Crimean War 1853 - 1856, notably at Varna and Sebastopol.

Appointed to the command of HMS Boxer on 11 May 1855, Samuel saw action during the raid on the ‘Crooked Spit’ in the Sea of Azov the following July and was Mentioned in Despatches. In November that same year he saw action again during the raids on Gheisk and Glorifa and, once again, was Mentioned in Despatches (2). Samuel was also awarded the Crimea and Turkish Medals and the Order of Medjide (Fifth Class) (3).

Appointed First Lieutenant of the Royal Yacht 'Victoria and Albert' in 1859, Samuel was promoted to Commander on 4 September 1861. Under the heading 'Officers Employed in the Service of the Coastguard - Inspecting Commanders', the Navy List of December 1862 records "Townsend Samuel P. 4 July 62 Skibbereen" - he was still there according to the Navy List of 1864. Four years later on 26 February 1866 he was appointed Captain of the 11 gun sloop HMS Icarus on commissioning at Sheerness and served on the China station. He was promoted Captain on 3 April 1868 (4) and later given command of HMS Nymphe, a four gun sloop, and served in the Far East until paying off at Sheerness in 1879. Between then and his retirement on 1 March 1883 (5) he commanded HMS Hercules and was Flag Captain to HRH The Duke of Edinburgh on HMS Warrior.

Though on the Retired List, Samuel was promoted Rear Admiral on 11 July 1885 (London Gazette 25490) and Vice Admiral on 20 June 1891 (London Gazette 26174). He was appointed a Land Tax Commissioner (6) for the ‘For the County of Southampton’ (?) on 28 December 1906 at which time he was living at The Grange, Fareham, Hampshire.

Samuel joined the Royal Cork Yacht Club in 1865 and was still a member in 1905.

The school records of Christ's College, Finchley, London, where Samuel's eldest son Edward Bridges Townsend [6C10] was educated 1872 -1874,show his address as Mistly Lodge, Middleton Park, Queenstown. At this time Samuel was serving on HMS Nymphe in the Far East.

Samuel's will was proved in the Principal Probate Registry, on 20 July, 1920, by Surgeon Captain Edward Bridges Townsend [6C10], Rev Ernest Horace Townsend [6C12] and Arthur John Matthews, the executors. (London Gazette 32176)

(1) Emma was born on 30 May 1833 and died on 8 October 1903.

(2) London Gazette 21762 and London Gazette 21826. A copy of each the report is included in Samuel’s ‘Scrapbook’.

(3) London Gazette 22122 page 1737 dated 3 April 1858.

(4) London Gazette 23368 page 2106 dated 7 April 1868.

(5) London Gazette 25206 page 1184 dated 2 March 1883.

(6) London Gazette 27980 page 9174 dated 28 December 1906.

'An Officer of the Long Parliament' Ch XIII p. 274-75 refers.