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The Flinders papersletters and documents about the explorer Matthew Flinders (1774-1814)
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Letter from E W C R Owen to Flinders (FLI03) Page 1

        Copy of captain Owen's letter answer

              H.M.S. Inconstant Spithead
              14 July 1811

Dear Sir

        I regret extremely that I have been prevented from at-
tending sooner to your letter of the 7th , on the subject of your brother,
but avail myself of the first leisure I could command to give the answer
you request.
        Lieutenant Flinders served under my orders the
greater part if not the whole time he commanded the Bloodhound
and I found in him a disposition to obey most strictly the orders which
I gave him; and I may add, that the activity of the enemy's privateers
made it necessary to urge every officer who served under me to his
best exertions. Those of your brother were not wanting.
        The correspondence which led to his court martial
passed thro' my hands, being then the senior officer on the Downes,
and I was very anxious to have seen him, that being fully acquainted
with the circumstances I might have placed his conduct in a point
of view more favourable than by the correspondence I observed it
was considered by admiral Wills; he was, however, at that time I
believe, on a distant part of the station which rendered it impos-
sible. This wish of mine will I hope, however, speak satisfactorily
the good opinion I then had of Lieut. Flinders.
        I observed that the statement & that of the pilot
were in direct contradiction of each other. I did not question for a
moment the accuracy of your brothers' statement, & was surprized
& sorry to learn afterwards the result of his court martial – It is
this question of his veracity which can alone bear hard upon him
now, and in the circumstances you have stated, I sincerely hope
you will be successful in finding sufficient to exonerate him,
who have the honor to remain Dear Sir
        your obliged & very obedient servant
              E.W.C.R. Owen

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Flinders, Matthew
Flinders, Samuel
Owen, Sir Edward William Campbell Rich


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