Diamond Rock

Aided by calm weather, the British were able to run lines ashore and hoist two 18-pounder cannons to the summit of the rock. The British hastily built fortifications and supplied the position with food and water for a garrison of two lieutenants and 120 men under the command of Lieutenant James Wilkes Maurice, Hood's first lieutenant. [Note 2] Hood officially commissioned the island as the "sloop" HMS Diamond Rock (a "stone frigate"). A six-gun sloop, designated Fort Diamond, supported the fort. In honour of his admiral, Maurice designated as "Hood Battery" the one 24-pounder that he placed to fire from a cave halfway up the side of the rock. The British also placed two 24-pounder guns in batteries ("Centaur" and "Queen's") at the base of the rock, and a 24-pounder carronade to cover the only landing-place. [Note 3] One account puts two 24-pounders on the summit, but all other accounts put 18-pounders there. [Note 4] At some point while this was going on, Ma Sophie blew up for unknown reasons, killing all but one of her crew.

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