N




NATI, JOSEPH

[see RATI, JOSEPH]

NEALL, JONATHAN
MA

Commander, Massachusetts Privateers

Jonathan Neall was a native of Salem, Massachusetts. On 21 May 1781 he was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Brigantine New Adventure. He was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Brigantine Fox on 29 August 1781. In the Fox he captured a rich West Indies ship and brought her into port in January 1782. [NOAR, 218] On 9 April 1782 he was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Ship Viper, [NRAR, 487] and, about May 1782, captured a ship with a cargo of salt, which was later recaptured. On 23 September 1782 he was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Ship Good Luck. [NOAR, 218]


NEILSON [NELSO, NELSON, NIELSON, NILSON], ALEXANDER
(P)

Lieutenant, Continental Marines

Alexander Neilson’s origins are unknown, but he was probably from Philadelphia, and possibly from Maryland. On 8 December 1775 he enlisted aboard the Continental Navy Ship Alfred as a Sargeant of Marines. Neilson may be the same person who married Mary Clouser at the Second Presbyterian Church on 12 January 1776. Soon after the Continental fleet sailed on the New Providence Expedition. Neilson participated in the landing at New Providence and the action off Block Island with HM Frigate Glasgow. Neilson was promoted to Second Lieutenant of Marines about 11 October 1776. On 14 October he was paid $20 wages by Commodore ESEK HOPKINS, who noted he was "Lt Marines Alfred." Neilson was aboard the Alfred during her cruise in the Cape Breton Expedition from 1 November 1776-16 December 1776, when she arrived in Boston. When JOHN PAUL JONES was relieved of Alfred's command about 19 January 1777, Neilson left the ship, with most of the other officers. He may have traveled to Philadelphia with Jones. About 1 April 1777 Neilson was assigned to Continental Navy Ship Delaware as Second Lieutenant of Marines. After completing her outfit, Delaware dropped down to Fort Island in April. On 25 June Neilson had guests aboard the ship. To provide refreshments, he borrowed some liquor from his fellow officer's sea-chest (First Lieutenant of Marines Daniel Henderson). Henderson charged Neilson with theft and Neilson was court-martialed. The court found him not guilty, but directed he replace the liquor. Neilson served aboard the Delaware during the early part of the Delaware River Campaign of 1777, and was aboard during the Battle off Philadelphia on 27 September 1777, when Delaware was captured by the British. Just before the British boarded the vessel, Neilson and part of the crew escaped to the Jersey shore. Neilson resigned his commission on 5 April 1778. He may be the same person (a resident of Maryland) who was commissioned as Second Lieutenant in the 1st Continental Artillery, but who resigned on 23 May 1779. He also may be the same person ("Nelson") who wrote to Francis Gurney of Philadelphia on 21 July 1781. He was then aboard a British prison ship at New York, and asked Gurney to use his influence to get a parole to allow him to go ashore, or obtain an exchange. [Smith, Marines, 458-459]


NELSON, ALEXANDER
PA

Owner, Pennsylvania Privateers


Alexander Nelson was a resident of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was associated with the following privateers:

As owner:

Date

State

Rig/Name/Guns/Crew

Commander

Co-owners

Security

Witness

7/15/80

PA

Brig Adventure (8/80)

John Leamy

Alexander Nelson and Philip Rocke & Co.

John Leamy, Alexander Nelson

[NRAR, 221]


NEWELL, DAVID
CT

Second Lieutenant, Connecticut Privateers

David Newell was a Second Lieutenant aboard the Connecticut Privateer Brigantine Marshall (Commander NOAH SCOVELL) on 6 March 1783. On 2 April 1783 the British brigantine Hope was captured. [see Marshall]


NEWMAN, ROBERT
MA

Commander, Massachusetts Privateers

Robert Newman of Beverly, Massachusetts, was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Schooner Adventure on 8 September 1779. [This is the date in Claghorn, Naval Officers of the American Revolution, 219 and Allen, Massachusetts Privateers of the Revolution, 68. In Howe, Beverly Privateers in the Revolution, 405, the date is 8 September 1777, two years earlier. The year 1779 would seem to be correct.]


NEWMAN, WINGATE
MA

Commander, Massachusetts Privateers


A native of Newburyport, [Claghorn, 219] Wingate Newman was commissioned to command the Massachusetts Privateer Brigantine Hancock on 2 September 1776. [Claghorn, 219-220] About July or August 1778 he was in command of the Massachusetts Privateer Brig Vengeance, of eighteen or twenty guns and 100 men. Vengeance sailed from Newburyport on 16 August 1778 for Corunna, Spain. En route, on 17 September 1778, he fought and captured HM Packet Ship Harriot. Four days later (21 September) the Vengeance fought HM Packet Snow Eagle and captured her in an action in which Newman was wounded in the thigh. Vengeance made Corunna about 1 October 1778, where the prisoners were turned over to the British consul. Newman forced him to give a receipt for the future exchange of American prisoners in return. [Allen, Naval History of the American Revolution, i, 359-360; Maclay, History of American Privateers, 117-118; Claghorn, Naval Officers of the American Revolution, 219-220] On 14 July 1781 he was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Schooner Lord Sterling, of four guns and thirty men. [Claghorn, 220]









NEWTON, DOWNHAM

RI

Commander, South Carolina Privateers


Downham Newton was reported to be a native of Providence, Rhode Island. [NDAR, IX, 703-704] On 16 February 1777, he was commissioned to the South Carolina Privateer Sloop Vixen. [NDAR, IX, 113 and note] About 7 May the Vixen sailed from Charleston, [NDAR, IX, 113 and note] probably in company with South Carolina Privateer Sloop Swift (Commander Andrew Groundwater). Newton and Groundwater sailed to New Providence in the Bahama Islands and attempted to raid the harbor there and cut out HM Schooner Tender Comet on 1 June 1777, but were beaten off. [NDAR, IX, 146 and note, 159-161, 192-195] Soon after leaving New Providence, Vixen was in company with the Swift near the Bahama Banks. A gale blew up and Swift ran onto a rock or reef on the Bahama Banks. The heavy surf began to break her up, but Groundwater and his crew got aboard the Vixen, which continued the cruise with a double crew. [NDAR, IX, 146 and note, 159-161] Vixen put into Havana on 10 June for supplies and provisions. Newton declared to the Spanish that he had been out five weeks and had come to intercept the homeward-bound Jamaica convoy off Cape San Antonio. After receiving the supplies and provisions he immediately sailed the next day. [NDAR, IX, 113 and note] On 13 June Vixen took the sloop Polly (Henderson). [NDAR, IX, 192-195] By 30 June Newton and Groundwater had met the South Carolina Privateer Sloop General Washington (Commander Hezekiah Anthony) and had begin cruising together. On that day the two privateers took the sloop Sally. [NDAR, IX, 287-288] On 1 July the two commanders encountered the sought-for Jamaica convoy. The privateers dogged the convoy looking for stragglers. Finally, on 5 July, [NDAR, IX, 252-253 and 253 note, 287-288] the two picked off a straggler. [NDAR, IX, 303] The prize was ship [NDAR, IX, 287-288] Nancy (John Lowrie).[NDAR, IX, 252 and note, 252-253 and note, 287-288] Commander Groundwater was assigned as prizemaster, with a prize crew of about nine men. [Coker, 88] On 8 July the two privateers quit following the convoy. [NDAR, 287-288] Vixen continued to patrol. Schooner Betsey (Thomas Muir), [NDAR, IX, 703-704] was bound from Antigua to New York when, on 16 July 1777, [NDAR, IX, 950-951] she was captured by Vixen at 34o52'N, 67oW. [NDAR, IX, 703-704] Newton later commanded the South Carolina Privateer Ship General Moultrie. [Coker, 300]


NEWTON, WILLIAM

MD

Commander, Maryland Privateers


William Newton was a resident of Annapolis, Maryland. He was commissioned to the Maryland Privateer Sloop Bennington on 16 December 1778. [see Bennington]


NICHOLAS, SAMUEL

PA

Major, Continental Marines



NICHOLLS, WILLIAM

SC

Prizemaster, South Carolina Privateers


William Nicholls was aboard the South Carolina Privateer Sloop General Washington (Commander HEZEKIAH ANTHONY) in September 1777. He was assigned as prizemaster of the 300-ton ship Spiers (or Speirs) captured on 13 September 1777. On the morning of 14 September General Washington got underway and proceeded to sea with her prizes, which soon parted company. Spiers, sailing for Charlestown, fell in with the armed British ship George (John Hosmer), at 32°N on 19 October 1777, and was recaptured. Hosmer put a prizemaster and a few men aboard, including the master (Chauvet) and two men from a French vessel he had previously captured, and proceeded to St. Augustine with his prize. Spiers arrived at St. Augustine on 22 October at 1700. Her British prizemaster went ashore. Nicholls, with the assistance of the American prize crew and Chauvet and the other two Frenchmen, rose on the British, secured them, and cast off at 2000. A hard wind was blowing and Spiers successfully escaped, even though she was anchored within 300 yards of other British shipping. Spiers arrived off Charlestown on 1 November 1777. [see General Washington]


NICHOLS, WILLIAM

MA

First Lieutenant of Marines, Massachusetts Privateers


William Nichols was aboard the Massachusetts Privateer Ship Boston (Commander WILLIAM BROWN) as First Lieutenant of Marines when she was commissioned on 24 September 1776. [NDAR, VI, 922 and note] Boston sailed about 1 November 1776 and captured six prizes before returning to Boston, Massachusetts on 25 March 1777. [see Boston]


NICHOLSON, JOHN

(P)

Captain, Continental Navy



NICHOLSON, JOSEPH

(P)

Captain, Continental Navy



NICHOLSON, SAMUEL

(P)

Captain, Continental Navy


On 17 June 1788 Nicholson petitioned Congress to make an estimate of the value of the prizes captured on Wicke's cruise around the British Isles in 1777, and requested that his share be paid to him. [Samuel Nicholson to Congress, extract, NRAR, 214] Congress assigned the matter to a committee which reported on 27 June, and which was accepted on 2 July 1788. [Committee Report, extract, NRAR, 214] Nicholson was not happy with this settlement. In a letter to Cyrus Griffin, President of the Continental Congress, he complained that he would receive only a "pittance," and that with no interest. Nicholson requested justice. [Nicholson to Griffin, extract, NRAR, 214] Congress sent this back to the committee which reported on 17 July that Nicholson should have a commission on the sales of the Wickes squadron's prizes. Congress accepted this report on 18 July. [Committee report, extract, NRAR, 214]


NICHOLSON, SAMUEL

[Owner], Massachusetts Privateers


Samuel Nicholson was a resident of Boston, Massachusetts. He was associated in privateering with HENRY MITCHELL and WILLIAM ERSKINE. Vessels associated with Nicholson were:

As security:

Date

State

Rig/Name/Guns/Crew

Commander

Co-owners

Security

Witness

11/2/79

MA

Ship Batchelor (16/120)

Alexander Holmes

William Erskine et al

Alexander Holmes, Martin Brimmer, Samuel Nicholson

[NRAR, 78]


NICHOLSON, WILLIAM

(P)

Captain, Continental Marines



NICOLSON [NICHOLSON], THOMAS

MA

Commander, Massachusetts Privateers


Thomas Nicolson [Nicholson] was a resident of Plymouth, Massachusetts. He was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Sloop America on 6 September 1776. America sailed from Plymouth on 15 September 1776. She took the ship Adventure, ship Betsey, captured with the assistance of Massachusetts Privateer Schooner General Putnam, brig Generous Friends, and ship True Love. [see America] He was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Ship Union on 21 July 1780. On 3 July 1782 he was commissioned to the Massachusetts Privateer Ship Viper. He captured a prize in the Viper before 27 January 1783. [NOAR, 222]


NILES, ROBERT

CT

Captain, Connecticut Navy



NORCOTT, JOHN


CT

[Prize Master], Connecticut Privateers


John Norcott sailed aboard the Connecticut Privateer Sloop Hermione (or Harmony, Commander THOMAS HOPKINS), commissioned 14 August 1782. He was probably aboard in the capacity of Prize Master. Hermione sailed for the West Indies soon after. On 10 September 1782 she met, fought, and captured the British brigantine Cumberland. On 29 September the sloop Adventure was captured and dispatched for Connecticut under Norcott’s command. He brought her into New London, Connecticut on 19 October 1782. [Middlebrook, MCR, II, 120]


NORRIS, EDWARD

MA

Owner, Massachusetts Privateers


Edward Norris was a resident of Salem, Massachusetts. The privateers with which Norris was associated were:

As owner:

Date

State

Rig/Name/Guns/Crew

Commander

Co-owners

Security

Witness

3/17/80

MA

Schooner Cutter (7/45)

Samuel Croel

John Page, Edward Norris et al

Samuel Croel, John Page, Edward Norris

Jonathan Peele, Jr., John Johnston [Allen, MPR, 107]

11/3/80

MA

Brigantine Cutter (10/45)

George Ashby, Jr.

Edward Norris et al

George Ashby, Jr., Edward Norris, Henry Cloutman

[NRAR, 261]


NORRIS, JOHN

MA

Owner, Massachusetts Privateers


John Norris was a resident of Salem, Massachusetts. The privateers with which Norris was associated were:

As owner:

Date

State

Rig/Name/Guns/Crew

Commander

Co-owners

Security

Witness

8/6/77

MA

Schooner Cutter (8/20)

Silas Smith

John Norris et al

Silas Smith, John Norris, Josiah Gilman

[NRAR, 261]

5/25/82

MA

Sloop Banter (8/50)

Henry White

John Norris et al

Henry White, John Norris, Robert Stone

[NRAR, 232]

8/20/82

MA

Brig Adventure (4/10)

Jonathan Tucker

John Norris et al

Jonathan Tucker, John Norris, James King

[NRAR, 222]


NORRIS, OLIVER

CT

Prize Master, Connecticut Privateers


Oliver Norris was aboard the Connecticut Privateer Brigantine Thetis (Commander ROBERT COLFAX) on 27 February 1783 when the schooner Honest Endeavour was captured. Norris was assigned as prize master and brought her into New London, Connecticut safely. [Middlebrook, II, 232]


NORTH

[see NORTH & TRESCOTT]



NORTH & TRESCOTT

SC

Owner, Maryland Privateers


The firm of North & Trescot, based in Charlestown, South Carolina, is listed as the part-owner of the following privateer:

As owner:

Date

State

Rig/Name/Guns/Crew

Commander

Co-owners

Security

Witness

10/8/78

MD

Sloop Adriana (9/47)

Joseph Vesey

Joseph Vesey, North & Trescott

Joseph Vesey, John Rodgers

[NRAR, 220]


NOTT [KNOTT], WILLIAM

CT

Captain, Connecticut Navy

Commander, Connecticut Privateers


William Nott [Knott] was a resident of Milford, Connecticut. He was commissioned to the Connecticut Privateer Sloop Broome on 2 July 1776. Nott took four very rich prizes in early August 1776, the ship Charming Sally, snow Ann, and the brigs Carolina Packet and John. Nott returned to Bedford, Massachusetts on 26 August. In early November 1776 he was at sea with the Massachusetts Privateer Sloop Independence (Commander James Magee). The pair took two schooners named Sally on 16 November 1776. After this Broome was lost to the enemy and Nott was later exchanged. [See Broome] On 5 March 1779 he was commissioned as a Captain in the Connecticut Navy and assigned to Connecticut Navy Sloop Guilford. Nott resigned his commission on 2 July 1779. [NOAR, 223]


NUDIGATE

GA

Lieutenant, Georgia Navy


Appointed 21 October 1776 by the Georgia Council of Safety as Lieutenant to Captain JACOB PRAY in his intended trading voyage.


NUTTING, JONATHAN

MA

Owner, Massachusetts Privateers


Jonathan Nutting was a resident of Boston, Massachusetts. He is described as a “painter” in the bond for Cato. Nutting was associated in privateering with JAMES SWAN, SILAS ATKINS, and ANDREW OLIVER. Vessels associated with Nutting were:

As owner:

Date

State

Rig/Name/Guns/Crew

Commander

Co-owners

Security

Witness

5/1/79

MA

Schooner Cato (2/20)

William Steward

Jonathan Nutting et al

William Steward, James Swan, Silas Atkins, Andrew Oliver, Jonathan Nutting

Robert Lash, Nathaniel Baker [Allen, MPR, 91]



Revised 23 August 2014 © awiatsea.com