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oif a little, and brought many of our starboard guns to bear; the enemy's rigging was so much cut that he could not avoid shooting a-head, which brought us fairly broadside and broadside. Our main-yard now went in the slings; both ships continued engaged in this manner till 35 minutes past 4, we frequently on fire, in consequence of the wreck lying on the side engaged. Our opponent now made sail ahead out of gun shot, where he remained an hour repairing his damages, leaving us an unmanageable wreck, with only the main-mast left, and that tottering. Every exertion was made by us during this interval, to place the ship in a state to renew the action. We succeeded in clearing the wreck of our masts from our guns, a sail was set on the stumps of the foremast and bowsprit, the weather half of the main-yard remaining aloft, the main tack was got forward in the hope of getting the ship before the wind, our helm being still perfect; the effort unfortunately proved ineffectual, from the mainmast falling over the side, from the heavy rolling of the ship, which nearly covered the whole of our starboard
guns. We waited the attack of the enemy, he now standing towards us for that purpose; on his coming nearly within hail of us, and from his manœuvre, perceiving he intended a position ahead, where he could rake us without a possibility of our returning a shot: I then consulted the officers, who agreed with myself, that our having a great part of our crew killed and wounded, our bowsprit and three masts gone, several guns useless, we should not be justified in wasting the lives of more of those remaining, who I hope their lordships and the country will think have bravely defended his majesty's ship ; under these circumstances, however reluctantly, at 50 minutes past 5, our colours were lowered from the stump of the mizen-mast, and we were taken possession of a little after 6, by the American frigate Constitution, commanded by commodore Bainbridge, who, immediately after ascertaining the state of the ship, resolved on burning her, which we had the satisfaction of seeing done as soon as the wounded men were removed. Annexed I send you a return of the killed and wounded, and it is with pain I perceive it so numerous ; also a statement of the comparative force of the two ships, when I hope their lordships will not think the British flag tarnished, although success has not attended us. It would be presumptuous in me to speak of captain Lambert's merits, who, though still in danger from his wound, we still entertain the greatest hopes of his being restored to the service of his country.
It is most gratifying to my feelings to notice the gallantry of every officer, seaman, and marine on board; in justice to the officers, I beg leave to mention them individuaily. I can never speak too highly of the able exertions of lieutenants Harrington and Buchanan, and also Mr. Robinson, master, who was severely wounded, and lieutenants Mercer and Davis, of the marines, the latter of whom also was severely wounded.—To captain John Marshall, R. N. who was a passenger, I am particularly obliged for his exertions and advice throughout the action. To lieutenant Alpin, who was on the main deck, and lieutenant Saunders, who commanded on the forecastle, I also return my thanks. I cannot but notice the good conduct of the mates and midshipmen, many of whom are killed, and he greater part wounded. To Mr. T. D. Jones, surgeon, and his assistants, every praise is due for their unwearied assiduity in the care of the wounded. Lieutenant-general Hislop, major Walker, and captain Wood, of his staff, the latter of whom was wounded, were solicitous to assist and remain on the quarter-deck.
I cannot conclude this letter without expressing my grateful acknowledgments, thus publicly, for the generous treatment captain Lambert and his officers have experienced from our gallant enemy, commodore Bainbridge and his officers. I have the honour to be, &c.
HY. D. CHADS.
P.S. The Constitution has also suffered severely both in her rigging and men, having her fore and mizen masts, main top-mast, both main-topsail yards, spanker-boom, gaff, and top-sail mast badly shot, and the greatest part of the standing rigging very much damaged, with 10 men killed, the commander, fifth lieutenant, and 46 men wounded, four of whom are since dead.
Force of the two Ships. Fava-28 long 18 pounders--16 carronades, 32 pounders -two long 9 pounders-46 guns. Weight of metal 1034lbs. -Ships' company and supernumeraries, 377.
Constitution—22 long 24 pounders—22 carronades, 32 pounders-one carronade, 18 pounder, 55.-Weight of metal 1490lbs.-Crew 480.
[Here follow the lists of the killed and wounded: 22 killed, 102 wounded.]
CRUIZE OF THE CHESAPEAKE.
Copies of Letters from Captain Evans, commanding the Fri-
United States Frigate Chesapeake, at Sea,
January 13, 1813. You will receive this by the British ship Volunteer, which we captured this morning on her passage to the Brazils. She is one of a large convoy that sailed from Cork on the 19th ult. for the West Indies and South America; she parted with the West India convoy on the 3d instant, off Madeira, and on the 7th she parted with the Cherub sloop, having under her convoy 11 ships bound to South America and the Pacific ocean.
The ship has on board salt and dry goods, and I have ordered her to the United States, under charge of midshipman Yarnall, who, from his merit, I beg leave to recommend to your attention.
On the first instant, while I was despatching the American brig Julia, by which vessel I had the honour of addressing you, we were chased by two ships. As I am anxious to despatch the Volunteer, so as to proceed to the eastward in quest of the convoy, I beg to refer you for further particulars to an extract from my journal on that day.
“At half past three, P. M., discovered a sail bearing E. S. E-made all sail in chase-at five came up with the chase sent a boat on board with lieutenant Page, and found her to be the American brig Julia of Boston, from Lisbon bound to Boston. On examination, lieutenant Page discovered she had two British licenses-brought the captain on board. At half past eight, sent the captain of the brig on board her. At nine, the boat returned, leaving lieutenant Budd on board the brig, with directions to keep near us all night, as I had determined to send a midshipman in her to Boston with the licenses and her papers. Wore to the southward and eastward-at half past seven, A. M, wore ship to the northward and westward, and hove to, and sent for the captain of the brig. At half past eight, two ships were discovered in chase
us, bearing W. S. W. At half past nine discovered them to be ships of war-sent Mr. Blodget and the captain on board the brig to proceed to Boston. On the boat's returning with lieutenant Budd, run her up and wore round, and stood E. by S., under the top-sails, to draw the vessels, in
se of us, more from the brig, and to ascertain more cor
rectly their force. At ten backed the mizen-top-sail—at half past
filled it, and hauled up E. S. E. to get to windward of them. Clewed the sail up. At this time very thick and squally, lost sight of the two ships. At meridian strong gales and squally—the ship under reefed fore-sail and main-top-sailtop-gallant-masts housed, flying jib-boom in, and gaff down. At 2, P. M., it clearing away a little, we wore and stood in the direction we had last seen the ships, but could discover nothing of them."
From then until to-day we have not seen a vessel of any description.
Respectfully, I have the honour to be, sir, your obedient servant,
SAML. EVANS. The Hon. Paul Hamilton, Secretary of the Navy. Sir, United States Frigate Chesapeake, Jan. 14, 1813.
We this morning fell in with another of the Brazil convoy, the brig Liverpool Hero, of Liverpool. As she did not appear to be of sufficient consequence to man, I have taken from her the most valuable articles she had on board, and we are now employed in scuttling her.
There is another of them in sight, and I am in hopes we shall have her in the morning.
Respectfully, I have the honour to be, sir, your obedient servant,
SAML. EVANS. Hon. Paul Hamilton, Secretary of the Navy.
CAPTURE AND SHIPWRECK OF THE VIXEN. Letter from Lieutenant Glen Drayton, late of the United States
Brig Vixen, to the Secretary of the Navy. Sir,
Spanish Town, Jamaica, February 8th, 1813. I am extremely sorry, that by the death of captain G. W. Reed (late of the United States brig Vixen), it devolves on me, as senior officer of said vessel, to inform you of her capture and subsequent loss by shipwreck, the particulars of which are as follow:
Being on our return from a cruize of thirty days, without meeting any of the enemy's vessels, having ranged along the West India islands, from as far eastward as Turk’s island, on the 22d of November, being in the latitude of 30° 30' N. and longitude 79° W., at 7, A. M., discovered a sail to the northward, the wind being light from the eastward, which we soon discovered to be a large ship, apparently a frigate,
standing for us. We immediately made sail, and hauled our wind to the southward. Finding her gaining on us fast, captain Reed ordered the water to be started; and the wind becoming light, we got out our sweeps, by the means of which we at first hoped to escape. About 1, P. M., the wind freshened and became more steady, when she again overhauled us. Our private signal being made, which was not answered, captain Reed directed the anchors to be cut from the bows, the bow-guns, kedge anchors, shot, and all lumber to be hove overboard, in order to lighten the vessel, slacked up the stays, and started the wedges of the masts, all of which proved ineffectual. We then bore up, in hopes of eluding her until night; but from her superior sailing she soon got within gun shot, when she commenced firing, her shot then passing over us, and there appearing no possible chance of escape, captain Reed called us together, when, conceiving that any resistance against so superior a force would be a wanton and useless sacrifice of a brave crew, we were compelled, after firing two guns, to surrender. She proved to be his majesty's frigate Southampton, of 38 guns, sir James Lucas Yeo commander. Captain Reed went on board the frigate and tendered his sword, which was immediately returned him. The officers and men being taken on board the ship, both vessels filled away, steering to the southward and eastward. From the 22d to the 25th, the wind blowing fresh, and sea running high, we could have no communication with the brig, consequently could not get our trunks, &c. from on board. On the night of the 26th, about half past 12, being at meridian in latitude 24° 54' N., longitude 74° 30' W., the ship struck on a reef of rocks; immediately afterwards, the brig struck on our starboard bow, about a quarter of a mile
At 3, A. M., the officer and crew of the brig deserted her, she having bilged. At day-light on the 27th we saw the land astern, which proved to be Little Windward, or Conception island, where we were fortunate enough to land the crews of both vessels in safety. Our officers and crew, however, were unable to save any thing from the wreck of the brig, she having settled so quickly. Boats were then despatched to New-Providence and the neighbouring islands to procure relief. On the 6th December, his majesty's brig. Rhodian, with two transports, arrived to our assistance, on board of which the two crews were embarked, and sailed on the 9th for this island, where we arrived on the 14th, and were put on parole, the men being put on board the prisonship at Port Royal.