Charles Howe Fremantle

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Sir Charles Howe Fremantle

Born1 June 1800
Died25 May 1869 (aged 68)
AllegianceFlag United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.gif United Kingdom
Service BranchNaval Ensign of the United Kingdom from 1801.png Royal Navy
Years Active1900-1937
Highest RankAdmiral command Flag RN from 1864.png Admiral
Commands heldHMS Challenger (1826)
HMS Inconstant (1836)
HMS Albion
HMS Juno (1844)
Channel Squadron
Plymouth Station
Battles/warsCrimean War
AwardsKnight Commander of the Bath
Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath

Admiral Sir Charles Howe Fremantle KCB, GCB RN (1 June 1800 – 25 May 1869) was a Royal Navy flag officer who went to serve as Senior Officer-in-Command, Channel Squadron from 1858 to 1860 and finally Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth Station from 1863 to 1866.

Naval Career

Fremantle joined the Royal Navy in 1812 and worked his way up the ranks on a number of vessels. From 1818 to 1819 he served on his father's flagship in the Mediterranean Fleet and was promoted to Lieutenant on 11 November 1819. On 23 April 1822 he was advanced to the rank of Commander. In 1824 Fremantle received the first gold gallantry medal of the new Royal National Institution for the Preservation of Life from Shipwreck, later the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, for an attempted rescue at Whitepit near Christchurch, Dorset.

On 4 August 1826 Fremantle was promoted to the rank of Captain. On 5 November 1828 he took command of the 26-gun frigate HMS Challenger on the Cape of Good Hope and East Indies Station and remained in that role until 12 June 1833. (whilst on the cape and east indies station he was dispatched on May 2, 1829 to take part in a formal possession of the whole of the western coast of Australia in the name of King George IV ending by the summer of that year).

On 25 August 1829, he headed for the British naval base at Trincomalee, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), where he was based for a couple of years. While there he visited many locations, including Kowloon in China, which he recommended as a good site for a British settlement. The British government agreed and Hong Kong was settled in 1841. On his way back to England from Ceylon, Fremantle in September 1832 visited the Swan River Colony for a week, but never returned. In 1833 he stopped at Pitcairn Island, where he tried to resolve a leadership dispute between Joshua Hill and George Hunn Nobbs.

On 20 May 1843 he was given command of HMS Inconstant on the Mediterranean Station in 1843 and remained in that post until 1 April 1847. He was next appointed captain of HMS Albion also in the Mediterranean until 2 April 1848. On 19 October 1853 he was reassigned to the Australia Station to take command of HMS Juno .

Fremantle served as Rear-Admiral controlling the naval transport service from Balaclava during the Crimean War.He went on to be Commander-in-Chief of the Channel Squadron in July 1858 and Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth in 1863.