Escaping a British Squadron
Less than a month after the United States declared war on Great Britain in June 1812, Captain Isaac Hull of USS Constitution was ordered to join Commodore John Rodger’s squadron at New York. On July 16, 1812, off Egg Harbor, New York, the masthead lookout spied a squadron of warships just northward and inshore of Constitution. Hull and his crew found themselves in the midst of five British ships.
Greatly outnumbered, Constitution turned and ran, and thus began what is known as “The Great Chase.” Through a series of quick-thinking actions and tactical maneuvers, Constitution led the British on an unrelenting mutli-day chase that ended as Constitution seized upon a squall and left the enemies in her wake. Having escape their pursuers, the Americans turned toward Boston and arrived there unharmed on July 27, 1812. The narrow escape demonstrated Constitution’s sailing capabilities and readiness for war.Read More