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Incidents
Recapture of the Argus





HM Frigate Amazon Recaptures an American Prize
31 July 1777



Connecticut Privateer Sloop Trumbull (Commander Henry Billings) was at sea in July 1777, sailing on the Newfoundland Banks. A prize was made on 12 July 1777. Ship Argus (Archibald M’Donnell [McDonnell], or Alexander Donaldson), was bound from Barbados to Quebec with a cargo of sugar and rum.1 On 12 July 1777 the Argus encountered the Trumbull and was captured. The British later reported that the Trumbull had twelve guns and seventy men aboard. The crews were exchanged and the prize master sailed for Boston, Massachusetts.2


Argus was off the coast of New Hampshire3 on 31 July 1777, when she was sighted and chased by HM Frigate Amazon (Captain Maximilian Jacobs). The chase began at 1000, when Amazon was five miles NE of Cape Ann. Several guns were fired at the Argus, and, at 1400, she was driven ashore by the prize crew. Amazon anchored off Rye Beach and fired on the Americans ashore, which were firing on the British boats that were hauling off the prize. At 1800 the prize and Amazon sailed, and, at 2100 Argus was sent off to Halifax.4


Summary Table

Vessel

Tons

Guns

Broadside

Men

Killed

%

Wounded

%

Total

%

Argus

Amazon

667

38

214

220

Time: 4 hours



1 NDAR, IX, 355 and note

2 Middlebrook, Maritime Connecticut During the Revolution, II, 234

3 Middlebrook, Maritime Connecticut During the Revolution, II, 234

4 NDAR, IX, 355 and note; see also AVCR, 9


Posted 28 July 2014 © awiatsea.com