HMS America (1777)

HMS America was a 64-gun third-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched on 5 August 1777 at Deptford.[1]

'America' (1777) RMG J3021.png
Plan showing the body, sheer lines, and longitudinal half-breadth proposed for America
Name: HMS America
Ordered: 18 June 1771
Builder: Deptford Dockyard
Launched: 5 August 1777
Fate: Broken up, 1807
General characteristics [1]
Class and type: Intrepid-class ship of the line
Tons burthen: 1370 bm
Length: 159 ft 6 in (48.62 m) (gundeck)
Beam: 44 ft 4 in (13.51 m)
Depth of hold: 19 ft (5.8 m)
Propulsion: Sails
Sail plan: Full rigged ship
  • 64 guns:
  • Gundeck: 26 × 24-pounders
  • Upper gundeck: 26 × 18-pounders
  • Quarterdeck: 10 × 4-pounders
  • Forecastle: 2 × 9-pounders

She took part in the Battle of the Chesapeake on 5 September 1781, and in 1795 was part of the British fleet at the Battle of Muizenberg.

America was under way off the Azores on 13 December 1800 when she ran against the Formigas Reef and suffered severe damage to her hull. With some difficulty she was refloated with the tide and returned to harbour. On 27 December America's captain and senior officers were court martialled aboard HMS Carnatic, which was anchored off Port Royal, Jamaica. All were acquitted when the court established that the grounding had been caused by errors in the ship's charts, upon which the Reef was marked as being substantially to the south of its actual location.[2]

Following the grounding, America was withdrawn from active service and redesignated as a prison ship. She was decommissioned and broken up in 1807.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Lavery 2003, p. 181.
  2. ^ Grocott 1997, p. 103


  • Grocott, Terence. Shipwrecks of the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Eras. London: Chatham Publishing. ISBN 1861760302.
  • Lavery, Brian (2003). The Ship of the Line - Volume 1: The development of the battlefleet 1650-1850. Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0851772528.