Home > Charles Loggie (~1755-1781)

225 Years Ago: October - December 1777

 

Charles Loggie, who sailed on Cook’s Second Voyage in Resolution as an able seaman (AB), was born in Plymouth about 1755, the son of James Loggie, a captain in the Royal Navy. 

 

It is probable that the Loggies were originally from Scotland, possibly Kincardine.  In 1763, James Loggie took command of HMS Burford, a 3rd rate, then serving as a guard ship at Plymouth.1  Charles joined his father in Burford as captain’s servant, around the same time, at about the age of eight.  Together, they sailed in April 1764, carrying troops to the West Indies.  Burford returned to Plymouth in 1765 to resume service as a guard ship until 1766.  James Loggie lost his sight about 1766, and was awarded a pension.  He died in 1779. 

 

About 1768, Charles Loggie transferred to HMS Temeraire, also operating as a guard ship at Plymouth, under Captain Edward Le Cras.  Loggie then became an AB in HMS Cornwall, yet another guard ship at Plymouth, under Captain John Lloyd.

 

Next, Loggie became master’s mate in HMS Nautilus.  He spent two years aboard the ship in Newfoundland waters, first under Commander John Chapman, and then under Commander James Howell Jones. 

 

Loggie’s next posting was with Cook in Resolution.  Loggie joined as an AB on 7 January, 1772.  He kept a journal,2 which Beaglehole describes as “a very cursory production” and “all that one could expect from the unhappy Loggie”. 

 

Being involved in several incidents, Loggie had a miserable voyage, and suffered punishment on more than one occasion.  He was sent before the mast on 6 January, 1773, for arguing with the boatswain.  John Elliott, also an AB aboard, wrote in his memoirs, “Mr Loggie Midshipman was Discharged from that Station for having had some Dispute with the Boatswain”.3  A month later, on 7 February, 1773, Elliott wrote, “Mr Loggie was ordred by the Capt to his former Duty, as Midshipman”. 

 

Loggie was in trouble again on 2 January, 1774, for assaulting James Maxwell, also an AB, for which he was disrated.4  Charles Clerke wrote,


This Morning read the Articles of War and punish’d Chas Logie with a dozen lashes for abusing, drawing his knife upon, & cutting 2 of the Midshipmen – this Logie was formally a Midshipman of this ship but for repeated ill behaviour the Captain thought proper to dismiss him the Quarter Deck – he has since more than once behav’d ill, and now had proceeded to such lengths that ye Common safety of the Ship[‘s] Company render’d it necessary to disgrace him with Corporal punishment.

 

Loggie was apprehended on 18 March, 1775, for threatening violence.  Clerke wrote,

PM confin’d Messieus Maxwell, Loggie and Coglan for going into the Galley with drawn knives and threatening to stab the Cook...  [AM]  Read the Articles of War to the Crew; the Captain upon examining the Prizoners finding Mr Loggie somewhat less culpable than the other two dismiss’d him from confinement.5 

 

Elliott described Loggie as “from misfort. drinking”.  He also wrote,

There was likewise a Mess which Cook called his Black Sheep, who were at time apt to get too much grog and Quarel in their Cups...  Those were Willis, Logie, Price, Cogland, Maxwell.6 

 

Elliott described Loggie’s experience on board at some length, showing certain sympathy for his colleague.

Mr Charles Loggie, a Midshipman and the Son of a very old Post Captain in the Navy, had for some time taken to drinking, a thing that he of all young Men should not have done, as he had when a child most unfortunately cut his head, and had been trapanned.  Consequently when he got Liquor, he was a Mad Man - at other times as good a tempered young Man as any in the Ship.  This infirmity was sometimes taken advantage of, and by none more than Mr. Maxwell, who made complaints of him to Capt. Cook.

One day Cook had him put in Irons, drunk, on the Quarter Deck, where he abused Capt. Cook, and called him every thing, which he bore for a time, and then ordered him to be taken away.  Not many days after, Mr. Maxwell came to Cook on the Quarter Deck, greatly heated, and complained that Loggie had attempted to stab him with a knife, and shewed a scratch in his hand, which he said he had got in saving himself from a worse injury. 

Now the fact was, Loggie was in liquor, and at dinner, when they got into an altercation, Maxwell made an attempt either to take the knife from him, or turn him out of the Birth.  Loggie, in holding up the Knife to defend himself, touched Maxwell’s hand.  But Cook, probably recollecting his conduct to himself so lately, instantly ordered him up to the Gangway, and there flogged him like a common Sailor, and then turned him before the Mast.

But every body pitied Loggie, while they execrated Maxwell, as a wining hypocrite, and we had every reason to think Capt. Cook was very sorry for the hasty step he had taken, as he soon after took Loggie on the Quarter Deck again, and paid every attention to him afterwards.

Those that may read this will be sorry to be told that Loggie was afterwards, in the year 1782, killed in a duel, brought on by his striking the Marion’s Capt. while in liquor, and which the officer would have forgiven, from knowing that he would be sorry enough in the Morning, but was not allowed to do so.  Therefore, challenged (Loggie was first Lieutenant) [he was] too high spirrited to apologise, and was shot through the body the first shot.  The Marion’s officer was killed by the first broadside in the first action the ship went into afterwards.

 

At the end of the voyage, Elliott and Loggie were involved in a boxing match while the ship was at Greenhithe, occasioned apparently by Elliott having knocked a “spy glass” against Loggie’s eye.  According to Elliott, Loggie was left with both eyes so swollen he could not go ashore for a week.

 

Despite his troubles in Resolution, Loggie sat his lieutenant’s examination after the Second Voyage.  He received his commission six months later in March 1776. 

 

Loggie served in HMS Boyne from 1777, under Captain Herbert Sawyer.  He served under Captain John Gidoin in HMS Torbay from 1780.  She was Loggie’s last known ship.  According to John Elliott, Charles Loggie was killed in a duel, while first lieutenant of Marion.  Unfortunately, no Royal Navy ship with that name has been identified at that time.  Elliott believed the duel took place in 1782, but July 1781 is more likely, given the date of a probate document (see below). 

 

Charles Loggie married Elizabeth Hewett twice in September, 1776, at Holy Trinity, Gosport.  She had been baptised on 13 August, 1756, also at Holy Trinity.  After the first marriage ceremony, it was realised that Elizabeth was still a minor, so a second ceremony was organised.  Her father, James Hewett, a peruke maker, was present to give his consent.  Charles and Elizabeth had two children, Charlotte Loggie, baptised on 1 December, 1778, at Stoke Damerel, Plymouth, and Edward Wills Loggie, baptised on 21 June, 1780, at Alverstoke near Portsmouth.  

 

After his death, Loggie’s wife, Elizabeth, remarried on 30 March, 1784, at Stoke Damerel, to Richard Morrice.  Strangely, there is a probate document for Loggie, from 1781, which lists him as a widower!

Exhibit: 1781/445.  Charles Loggie, widower, 1st Lieutenant of HMS Torbay.  Probate inventory, or declaration, of the estate of the same, deceased.7 

 

Loggie’s father, James, died in 1779.  In his will there is no mention of Charles.  Three daughters, Charlotte, Catherine, and Harriott, and another son, Edward, are mentioned, as are several of James’s siblings, and many Royal Navy captains.  Perhaps Charles had been disowned because of his be-haviour in Resolution?

 

Lieutenant’s certificate for Charles Loggie

 

17 August 1775    more than 22 years old    more than 11 years service.

 

Ship

Starting date

Quality

Y

M

W

D

Burford

 

Cap serv

0

4

1

0

Burford

 

Clerk

0

5

0

1

Burford

 

Clerk

1

10

0

6

Burford

 

AB

1

9

2

4

Temeraire

 

AB

1

0

3

4

Cornwall

 

AB

0

10

3

2

Nautilus

 

Master’s mate & Mid

2

0

2

3

Resolution

 

AB

3

6

3

4

 

 

Total

11

9

1

3

 

Journals from Nautilus

Certificates from Captains Chapman, Cook and Jones

6 September 1775           Campbell        North

 

John Robson

References

  1. Guard ships were stationed at major ports and dockyards during rare periods of peace, but prepared for action should an emergency occur. They were kept in readiness with sails and rigging, and were manned by the core of their normal company with the remainder available to be called up at short notice.
  2. His journal runs from 18 January to 26 July, 1773.The National Archives (TNA).Adm 51/4554/207.
  3. Cook’s Log, page 1483, vol. 21, no. 1 (1998). 
  4. Cook’s Log, page 1593, vol. 22, no. 1 (1999). 
  5. Cook’s Log, page 1717, vol. 23, no. 1 (2000). 
  6. Cook’s Log, page 41, vol. 35, no. 2 (2012). 
  7. TNA.  PROB 31/694/445.  July 1781.

Originally published in Cook's Log, page 26, volume 39, number 3 (2016).

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