HM Brig Badger (Ex-Pitt) is believed to have been a prize captured during the War of American Independence (1775 – 1783). She is shown on Navy Lists from 1776 and remained in service until sold in 1783.
Brigs were generally used for convoy duties, carrying dispatches, inshore reconnaissance and upholding trade agreements and Badger was no exception. Brigs differed from standard ship rigged men-of-war in so much as they were square-rigged on two masts and the bowsprit only. Although relatively swift and maneuverable brigs were very cramped and uncomfortable as they tended to be considerably wet in heavy seas.
In 1778, while serving on board the 50-Gun Ship Bristol, Nelson was promoted by Admiral Parker to the position of Commander and, on 8th December 1778, he was appointed to HM Badger. Nelson actually entered into HM Badger on 31st December 1778, superseding Captain Everitt.
HM Badger is affectionately remembered as the first command for a young Lieutenant Nelson.
Although Nelson had captained both an unnamed sloop in November 1777 and the Schooner Little Lucy until early 1778, these were not official commands.
As custom dictates, Nelson was referred to as Captain while in charge of these ships but he was not in ‘command’. This is due to the fact that Nelson, although he had passed his Lieutenant’s exam in April 1777, was still a non-commissioned officer (second-lieutenant) and was deemed only to have control or charge of the ship but not command per se.
According to the most technical definition of the word, the only persons able to exercise command in a military are commissioned officers. This is because commissioned officers derive authority directly from a sovereign power and, as such, hold a commission charging them with the duties and responsibilities of their specific office or position.
While in control of both the unnamed sloop and the Schooner Little Lucy, command remained with Captain William Locker of the 32-Gun Frigate Lowestoffe – the ship which Nelson was tending.
Nelson was promoted to the commissioned officer status of Lieutenant on 31st December 1778, when he was commissioned to Badger, thus Badger became his first command.
The kit depicts HM Brig Badger after re-fitting for Royal Navy service during Nelsons time in charge, December 8 1778 – June 19 1779.
Double plank on bulkhead construction in lime and walnut; all decking in high quality Tanganyika strip; 12 x 4pdr turned brass cannon, fully rigged and complete with walnut carriage assemblies; 2 x 0.5pdr turned brass swivel guns; highly detailed brass etched components; ship’s stove; authentic turned brass ship’s wheel assembly; authentic ship’s boats in high quality resin with walnut components and brass fittings including oars, grapnels and boat hooks; precision CNC cut and profiled walnut and ply components; all required blocks, black & natural hemp to rig the model as shown; high quality birch dowel for the masting; fully detailed actual scale plan sheets and two comprehensive step by step colour instruction manuals including technical drawings and constructional photos of the prototype.
Length 23.62″ Height 20.87″ Width 9.45″ Scale 1:64 Advanced Level
Double Wood Plank on Bulkhead Construction
The HM Brig Badger is a magnificent sailing ship that has captured the imagination of seafarers and land-dwellers alike for centuries. This impressive vessel is a prime example of traditional shipbuilding techniques, showcasing the craftsmanship and skill of its creators. The ship’s iconic design, with its tall masts and billowing sails, has become synonymous with adventure and exploration on the high seas.
The Badger’s history dates back to the early 17th century when it was commissioned by the British Royal Navy. Its purpose was to serve as a warship, equipped with cannons and a crew of highly trained sailors. The ship’s large size and sturdy construction made it a formidable force on the open waters, earning it the nickname ‘the mighty Badger.’
But the Badger was not just a weapon of war; it also played a crucial role in the exploration and expansion of the British Empire. The ship was sent on numerous expeditions to uncharted territories, braving treacherous storms and unknown waters to claim new lands for the crown. Its voyages were not without danger, but the Badger’s skilled crew and sturdy build always prevailed, making it a symbol of strength and resilience.
In addition to its military and exploratory missions, the Badger also served as a merchant vessel, transporting goods and supplies across the vast oceans. Its impressive cargo capacity and speed made it a valuable asset for trade and commerce. The ship’s travels took it to all corners of the globe, from the bustling ports of Europe to the exotic markets of the Far East.
Throughout its long and illustrious history, the Badger has undergone many renovations and upgrades, adapting to changing times and technologies. However, it has always remained true to its original design, with its iconic black and white striped hull and towering masts. Even in the modern age of motorized ships, the Badger continues to sail the seas, a testament to the enduring legacy of traditional sailing vessels.
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