27th November 1857

Admiral Thomas Le Marchant Gosselin died

Guernsey-born Admiral Thomas Le Marchant Gosselin died on 27 November 1857 after an impressive career in the navy.

Gosselin was born in St Peter Port in 1765 and was first sent to sea aged just 13. The following year, he was captured by the combined fleets of France and Spain just off Plymouth and was held in Normandy for three months.

Despite his career having had such a rough start – and at such a young age – it seems not to have put him off a life on the water.

An impressive CV

Gosselin was promoted several times over the years. The first of these was his elevation to lieutenant in 1787. Six years later, he was in command of his own ship

He got his revenge on the French almost 20 years after he had been held captive in Normandy, when he captured a French convoy while commanding HMS Kingfisher. He had been appointed to the ship in 1794.

In all, he spent almost three decades at sea in command of a variety of boats. He saw action in the waters off America, France, India and the West Indies. When ill-health eventually forced him back to dry land, he continued to earn himself promotions – first to rear admiral in 1814, to vice admiral in 1825 and, in 1841, to admiral.

Yet, as a man who clearly loved the sea, not even his increasing frailty was enough to force him out of the navy, despite the fact that as he was not in service he was on half-pay.

He remained active in his final rank until his death, aged 92, in 1857. By then he was living in Jersey where he left behind a wife, Sarah, and the son and three daughters he had had with her. His will has been retained by the National Archives at Kew.


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Other events that occured in November

Car plane air crash caused airport fireball 1st
A hospital worker stood accused of murder 2nd
Sark’s vineyards were vandalised 3rd
The original Torteval church was consecrated 4th
Sibyl Beaumont married Robert Hathaway 5th
The papers were excited by a Guernsey execution 6th
The States agrees to pay the Bailiff 7th
States of Guernsey hired its first independent vet
The Little Theatre was reprieved… for a while 8th
Guernsey was declared free of cholera 9th
Guernsey optician Specsavers was founded 10th
The court considered a Guernsey porn dealer’s testimony 11th
Guernsey Yacht Club was founded 12th
Guernsey aimed for equal adoption rights 13th
Jethou’s tenant fell off his own cliff 14th
Dad’s Army actor John le Mesurier died 15th
A Guernsey recruit regretted signing up 16th
Horticultural painter William Caparne was born 17th
German forces confiscated Guernsey’s radios 18th
A plane crashed on Crevichon 19th
Sark featured in the music charts 20th
Guernsey recruits caused concern in Parliament 21st
First Guernsey competitor took part in Miss World 22nd
A Lancaster bomber crashed on Sark 23rd
Sark women get the right to inherit 24th
Spanish flu arrived on Guernsey 25th
Guernsey held its first full marathon 26th
Admiral Thomas Le Marchant Gosselin died 27th
HMS Boreas sank at Hanois 28th
Radio station Contact 94 went off the air 29th
Royal Guernsey Light Infantry memorial was unveiled 30th