Rank(s): Marine Private
Dates of Service: -
Birth Date: 6/21/1789
Timothy Carlton was born around June 21, 1789 in Andover, Massachusetts, son of Daniel and Mary Carlton.
Before April 27, 1813, Carlton was a laborer in Massachusetts. He enlisted as a private in the Marine Corps on April 21, 1813.
Carlton joined Constitution’s crew as a private on August 13, 1813. He was assigned to the starboard watch. On September 1, 1813, he was promoted to corporal. He departed on July 28, 1815.
Marine privates served as the shipboard police force and were, in effect, seagoing soldiers. They used the same manual of arms as the army and trained in much the same way. Unlike the army, marines had to be familiar with naval work and warfare. Marines could not be ordered aloft to do the work of the seamen there, but they could expect to man the capstan or serve as gun crews on the gun deck. Marines stood watch as sentries at sensitive parts of the ship, to see that no unauthorized people passed into those spaces (such as the captain’s cabin or the spirit room). In battle, marines armed with muskets or rifles took up station along the gangway or in the tops to keep up a constant fire on the enemy’s decks. The marine private received $6.00-$8.00 per month.
Like the sergeant, the corporal was a non-commissioned officer who supervised the men on a more intimate level. He lived and fought alongside the privates under his command, and assisted and directed all of the various duties of the marines. A corporal received $9.00 per month.
Battles and Engagements
He participated in the battles with HMS Cyane and HMS Levant and received $51.81 in prize money.
On August 6, 1816, a court martial trial was held for Carlton. He was charged with contempt to a superior officer while in the execution of his duty, and “mutinous & seditious expressions.” First, when asked why the marines were not on deck, he replied, “If there was no doing anything on board the ship, and no way he could please any person.” When asked to whom he was speaking, he replied contemptuously that he presumed he spoke to a gentleman. Second, he said that “he wished himself out of the service and leave of the ship and that he did not care whether he discharged his duty or not.” He was found guilty, his rank was reduced and he was sentenced to 39 lashes. On July 16, 1818, he was discharged. His place and date of death are unknown.