The cannon sloop that belonged to Viapori’s archipelago fleet was a shallow draft, seaworthy and heavily armed ship, which could be sailed and rowed. The length of the cannon sloop’s hull, which is equipped with two masts and 15 pairs of oars, was 20 metres and the width 4.5 metres, and 50 men were needed to row it. Cannon sloops had a crucial significance in the naval battle during Gustav III’s war (1788-1790) in Ruotsinsalmi, which ended to the great victory of the Swedish fleet.
The new cannon sloop is based on the drawings prepared by Ship Architect Fredrik Henrik af Chapman and old document sources of the Swedish fleet’s drawings office. The ship was built using traditional building materials and construction methods at Suomenlinna’s shipyard, which operated until 1808 as the Swedish archipelago fleet’s Viapori naval squadron base. Nowadays the shipyard operates as a traditional vessel centre, where culture-historically valuable vessels are renovated and restored.
The project has been run by the ship board of directors founded by Ehrensvärd Society and Viapori Shipyard Foundation. The project started in the autumn of 2010 and the ship was christened as Diana in the summer of 2014. Diana is Finland’s first electrical passenger ship at sea.