HMS Providence was a sloop of the Royal
Navy, famous for being commanded by William Bligh on his second breadfruit voyage between 1791 and
Providence was purchased on the stocks from Perry &
Co, Blackwall in February 1791.
She was launched on
23 April 1791
commissioned under Bligh that month. She was coppered at
Woolwich for the sum
of £1,267, and then again at Deptford for
Rated as a sixth rate
, she sailed for the
Pacific on 2 August 1791
. Bligh completed a mission to collect breadfruit trees and other botanical specimens
from the Pacific, which he transported to the West Indies.
Specimens were given to the Royal Botanic Gardens in St.
returned to Britain in February
1794, having been re-rated as a sloop on 30
. She underwent another refit
at Woolwich and was recommissioned in October 1793 under the
command of Commander William
. Broughton was ordered to rejoin the Vancouver Expedition
Britain on 15 February 1795
. Reaching Monterrey long after the expedition made
its final departure, Robert decided (correctly) that Vancouver
would not have left his surveying task unfinished and departed to
chart the coast of east Asia.
course of his explorations, he named Caroline IslandCarolina
(which later became
") "in compliment to the daughter
of Sir Philip
of the Admiralty
superseded that given by Pedro Fernández de
Quirós, a Portuguese explorer sailing on behalf of Spain; his account names the island "San
Providence voyaged to Asia as the
crew surveyed the coast of Hokkaidō before wintering at Macau.
Broughton purchased a small schooner which proved providential
when, on 16 May 1797
Providence was wrecked at Miyako-jima, south of Okinawa.
Broughton and his crew continued the mission in the schooner,
exploring northeast Asia, and returned home in February 1799.
- Winfield, Rif, British Warships
of the Age of Sail 1714–1792: Design, Construction, Careers and
Fates, pub Seaforth, 2007, ISBN 1-86176-295-X