Hull’s Victory: or, Huzza for the Constitution.
Broadsides are oversized printed sheets containing proclamations, announcements, or advertisements that were publicly posted or distributed door to door. This two-column song sheet, composed to the tune of “Paul Jones’ Victory,” commemorates USS Constitution’s naval victory over HMS Guerriere in the War of 1812. On August 19, 1812, Constitution, commanded by Captain Isaac Hull, met and defeated HMS Guerriere, a 38-gun British frigate commanded by Captain James Richard Dacres. The stunning victory provided a much needed morale boost for the American public and proved that the fledgling United States Navy was every bit as professional and competent as Britain’s mighty Royal Navy. This broadside applauds Hull’s naval gallantry and is a statement of patriotic pride.
The song’s title is a nod to Connecticut native Captain Isaac Hull, who was born in 1773 to Sarah Bennett Hull and Revolutionary War officer Joseph Hull. He went to sea at an early age and, in 1798, accepted a commission as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy. Hull served with distinction and rose through the ranks before becoming captain of Constitution in 1810. The defeat of HMS Guerriere showed Hull to be a skilled naval officer and represented the high point of his military career. He continued on in the Navy until his retirement in 1841 and for a time held command of the Boston Navy Yard. Hull died in 1843.