HMS Pluto

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HMS Pluto

HMS Pluto, of 396 tons, was built for the Admiralty in 1831. She was a wooden paddle steamer and carried two 24 pound guns. She arrived in Jersey on 17 September, under Captain Comben, and ran until 8 February 1838, being only a relief packet.

Ship's history

Written by Mark Pulley for his Facebook group Maritime Jersey

Built for the Royal Navy in 1831 HMS Pluto arrived in Jersey in September 1837 acting as a relief mail packet steamer.

In the 1830s the Post Office attempt to run a passenger and mail service to the Channel Islands had not gone well. The original mail cutter owners - who had years experience of sailing ships and local waters - refused to get involved with the newly introduced paddle steamers.

The Post office service was badly managed with poor quality, under powered steamers, and in January 1837 the Admiralty stepped in and took over the service. HMS Pluto was larger than other ships operating the Channel Island service at the time, and required a larger crew.

For the passenger it was an honour to have the mail packet Captain fully adorned in navy uniform including sword.

During her lifetime HMS Pluto served off the West African coast, West Indies, America, along with several parts of Europe and home waters. She was broken up in 1861 at Sheerness

  • Construction - Wooden Paddle Steamer
  • Built - 1831
  • Builder - Woolwich Dockyard
  • Launched - 28 April 1831
  • Length - 41 meters
  • Tonnahe - 365
  • Engines - 60-100HP, built by Boulton, Watt and Co
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