Naval General Service, clasp, Off Mardoe 6 July 1812
E. Baugh, Volr 1st Class.
Lieutenant Edward Baugh entered the Royal Navy on 15 October 1810 as a Volunteer 1st Class. He served in this rank at the action ‘O Mardoe’ on 6 July 1812 (also known as the Battle of Lyngor), while serving aboard the brig-sloop H.M.S. Podargus (14) under the command of Commander William Robillard. This action, taking place o the southern coast of Norway, allowed British naval forces to destroy the last remaining ships of the Danish-Norwegian fleet (in particular, the 40-gun frigate Najaden), and effectively to end Danish- Norwegian involvement in the Napoleonic Wars. Sailing into unfamiliar waters, the Podargus led the British ships but running aground, both she and H.M.S. Flamer were swiftly set upon by Danish and Norwegian gunboats & shore batteries. The two British vessels managed to regroup despite suffering damage, and rejoined the larger British ships, H.M.S. Dictactor (64) and H.M.S. Calypso (18). In a clever piece of seamanship, the Dictator, assumed to be too large to enter the Lyngor sound, made way into it and grounded itself deliberately, allowing her to deliver repeated broadsides into the unprepared Najaden, and to sink it with considerable losses. Despite capturing two gunboats, the British were forced to abandon them as they also became grounded in the shallow waters. Despite some damage to Podargus and Flamer, and a few casualties, the action was an important tactical success and ended any Danish-Norwegian hopes of breaking the blockade. Edward Baugh was serving aboard the Bellerophon in July 1815 when Napoleon surrendered to Captain Maitland, and he later passed his examination in 1817. He was promoted to Lieutenant on 25 April 1829 aboard H.M.S. Thetis, and during this time he was wrecked near Cape Frio on 5 December 1830. Continuing to serve, he joined the Coast Guard between 1837 and 1842, afterwards going on half-pay. He married Mary Minshaw on 17 November 1842, and he died on 27 February 1858 at Eastbourne, at the age of 62.
Bellerophon and Napoleon
Maitland believed that Rochefort was the more likely point of escape, but took the precaution of sending two smaller craft to cover other ports, one to Bordeaux, and another to Arcachon. He kept Bellerophon herself off Rochefort. Admiral Hotham told Maitland that should he intercept Bonaparte, he was to take the former emperor to England.
Maitland’s instincts proved correct, and Napoleon arrived at Rochefort in early July. By this time, Napoleon was in an untenable position. Napoleon could no longer remain in France without risking arrest; indeed, Prussian troops had orders to capture him dead or alive. However, the Bellerophon and the rest of Hotham’s fleet were blocking every port. Therefore, Napoleon authorised the opening of negotiations with Maitland. The negotiations opened on 10 July. Maitland refused to allow Napoleon to sail for America, but offered to take him to England instead. The negotiations went on for four days, but eventually Napoleon acquiesced. He surrendered to Maitland on 15 July and embarked on the Bellerophon with his staff and servants.
Maitland placed his cabin at the former emperor’s disposal and sailed the Bellerophon to England. She reached Torbay on 24 July, then was ordered to Plymouth, whilst a decision was made by the government over Bonaparte’s fate. She sailed again on 4 August and whilst off Berry Head on 7 August, Napoleon and his staff were removed to HMS Northumberland, which conveyed him to his final exile on Saint Helena. Maitland later wrote a detailed narrative of Bonaparte’s time on the Bellerophon, which he subsequently published in 1826.
47 N.G.S. medals were issued with the ‘Off Mardoe 6 July 1812’ clasp, with just 19 extant known to the market.
Ex Douglas Morris Collection; Glendining, July 1953; Phillips Collection, Glendining, 17 June, 1925; Spink, August 1905; Debenham, August 1899