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George Glas (1725-65) was a Scottish seaman and adventurer who commanded a ship which traded between north-west Africa and Brazil. In 1763 he discovered a river, possibly at Gueder, which went some way inland. Glass made an arrangement with the Board of Trade to secure a grant of £15,000 providing he could obtain for the British crown the land he proposed to develop. Consequently, he signed a Treaty with the Moors and named his settlement, Port Hillsborough.
In November 1764 during a visit to Lanzarote to purchase a barque for river work he and his party were set upon by the Spaniards and imprisoned at Santa Cruz. During his imprisonment the settlement was attacked by natives and the survivors, which included his wife and small daughter, were forced to flee to Tenerife. After the British government interceded Glas was released from prison and, with his wife and daughter, set sail for England on the barque Earl of Sandwich. However, tragedy was the befall the Glas family. It was rumoured that the ship was carrying bullion and during the voyage the Spanish and Portuguese crew mutinied slaughtering the captain and crew. Glas was stabbed to death and his wife and daughter thrown overboard before the ship was recaptured. When the ship arrived in Dublin the mutineers were hanged.

Nathaniel Dance (1748 - 1827) was born in 1748, joined the East India Company in 1759 at the age of 11 and was promoted to his first command in 1787. In 1804, Dance was homeward bound from Canton as senior master and, therefore, commodore of an unescorted convoy of sixteen East Indiamen and twelve independent country vessels. On 14th February, as the convoy approached the southern entrance to the Malacca Strait it was intercepted by a squadron of French warships commanded by Rear Admiral Linois. Although the ships of the convoy was armed to a certain extent they were no match for the French squadron which comprised a ship of the line, three heavy frigates and an armed brig. The convoy was in great danger and had Linois been determined to attack he could have made an easy capture. However, Dance displayed more tactical cunning and by manoeuvering his vessels deceived Linois into thinking that the convoy was being escorted by three ships of the line. The French made a half hearted attack which amounted to nothing before withdrawing and fleeing. The merchantmen chased him for two hours before resuming their course for the Malacca Strait. The convoy eventually arrived safely back in England where Nathaniel Dance was knighted and presented with a sword of honour. He also received a service of plate and a sum of money usually given to merchant officers who had save their ships.

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