Thursday, November 13, 2008

Frigate Chesapeake's First War of 1812 Cruise

(click on map to see a larger view)

We present here a map produced by museum staff members that traces the first cruise of the frigate USS Chesapeake during the War of 1812. The map was produced as a part of a new article on the frigate that has appeared in The Daybook, the museum's quarterly journal of local naval history and museum events.

Built at the Gosport Shipyard in Portsmouth, Chesapeake is infamous for her string of bad breaks and luck. The British scored their biggest naval victory in the War of 1812 when HMS Shannon defeated Chesapeake off the coast of Boston in 1813. But that happened in her second cruise.

During the first cruise, Chesapeake captured several British ships (and one American ship trading for the British). Among the captures was one of the most valuable captures in Naval history. In January 1813 she captured the British merchant ship Liverpool Hero, which was carrying over $185,000 (1813 dollars) worth of pig iron and copper.

Click here to see the article.

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