BAE Abdón Calderón

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History
Name: Abdón Calderón
Builder: David Dunlop & Co, Port Glasgow
Yard number: 179
Laid down: 1884
Launched: 15 November 1884
Completed: 1885
Acquired: 12 December 1886
Decommissioned: 1960
Status: Museum ship
General characteristics
Tonnage: 186 GT
Displacement: 300 long tons (305 t)
Length: 40 m (131 ft 3 in)
Beam: 4.8 m (15 ft 9 in)
Draught: 2.7 m (8 ft 10 in)
Propulsion: Reciprocal steam engine, 1 shaft, 150 shp (112 kW)
Speed: 8 knots (15 km/h; 9.2 mph)
Range: 500 nmi (930 km)
Complement: 54
Armament:
  • 2 × Armstrong 76 mm (3 in) guns
  • 2 × Armstrong 47 mm (2 in) guns
  • 2 × Breda 20 mm AA guns

BAE Abdón Calderón is a naval ship of Ecuador, built in 1885 and now preserved as a museum ship at Guayaquil.

Service History[edit]

The Ecuadorian naval vessel Abdón Calderón was built in 1885 at Port Glasgow, Scotland by David Dunlop & Co as the cargo ship Chaihuin for Chilean shipowners Adam Greulich y Compañia of Valparaiso.[1] In December 1886 she was purchased by the Ecuador Government, becoming the war steamer Cotopaxi, and was armed with four breech-loading Armstrong cannons and two Gatling guns.[1] In 1892 Cotopaxi was redesignated as a cruiser.[1]

In September 1913 in the Concha Revolution following the assassination of President Eloy Alfaro, the people of Esmeraldas revolted against the government of the new president, General Leónidas Plaza and attacked the local army headquarters. Cotopaxi was already anchored nearby and approached the city and fired warning shots from her 76mm cannon. With the assistance of two contingents of her crew which went ashore, the army was relieved.[2] An extended siege followed, but after the end of the revolts in 1916 a period of austerity led to the reduction in the size of the navy, with only the 'Cotopaxi remaining in service by the mid-1920s,[2] from 1924 she was also used as a training ship.[3] In 1927 Cotopaxi was again redesignated, now as a gunboat and nine years later her name was changed to Abdón Calderón in honour of the revolutionary hero who died from injuries sustained on 24 May 1822 during the Battle of Pichincha.[1]

Ecuadorian–Peruvian War[edit]

At the beginning of the Ecuadorian–Peruvian War in July 1941, the port of Guayaquil was blockaded and Abdón Calderón was hurriedly prepared, though with antiquated armament,[4] on 25 July she encountered the Peruvian Orfey class destroyer Almirante Villar in the Jambeli channel.[4][5] After sighting the Peruvian ship, the Abdón Calderón engaged the Peruvian vessel and a clash ensued in which the Peruvian ship was hit several times, the Almirante Villar returned to the home port of Callao, after suffering heavy damage, though this is denied by Peruvian sources.[6] As a result of this action, helping to defend the city of Guayaquil, the Ecuadorian warship and its commander, Captain Rafael Morán Valverde, received the highest decorations of the navy.[4]

Abdón Calderón was later transferred to the Coast Guard and remained in active service until 1957, when she was moored in port.[1]

Museum Ship[edit]

In 1960 Abdón Calderón was decommissioned for conversion to a static memorial museum and placed ashore in the Parque de la Armada (Navy Park) at Guayaquil, the museum was inaugurated in 1972.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Sánchez Bravo, Mariano (2006). Episodios Históricos e Imágenes de la Armada del Ecuador (in Spanish and English). Guayaquil: Instituto de Historia Marítima. pp. 90–98. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  2. ^ a b Sánchez Bravo, Mariano (2006). Episodios Históricos e Imágenes de la Armada del Ecuador (in Spanish and English). Guayaquil: Instituto de Historia Marítima. pp. 114–115. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  3. ^ Sánchez Bravo, Mariano (2006). Episodios Históricos e Imágenes de la Armada del Ecuador (in Spanish and English). Guayaquil: Instituto de Historia Marítima. p. 150. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c Sánchez Bravo, Mariano (2006). Episodios Históricos e Imágenes de la Armada del Ecuador (in Spanish and English). Guayaquil: Instituto de Historia Marítima. pp. 134–141. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  5. ^ Wikisource. "Parte oficial peruano sobre el Combate Naval de Jambeli". Retrieved 26 October 2010. 
  6. ^ Rodríguez Asti, John (2008). Las Operaciones Navales durante el Conflicto con el Ecuador de 1941: apuntes para su historia (in Spanish). Lima: Dirección de Intereses Marítimos e Información. p. 44. 
  7. ^ Pino, Efrén Avilés. "Calderón, Cañonero". Enciclopedia del Ecuador (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 25 July 2014. Retrieved 13 August 2014.