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Admiralty Office, April 20, 1813. immediately tacked and made all sail
Letters have been received at this away upon the wind. We soon found office from Rear Admiral Dixon, ad. we had the advantage of her in sailing, dressed to John Wilson Croker, Esq. and came up with her fast, when she by Lieut. Chads, late first lieutenant hoisted American colours; she then of his Majesty's ship Java :
bore about three points on our lee
bow. At fifty minutes past one, p. m. United States Frigate Constitution, the enemy shortened sail, upon which off St Salvador, Dec. 31, 1812. we bore down upon her; at ten minutes Sir,
past two, when about half a mile disIt is with deep regret that I write tant, she opened her fire, giving us a you, for the information of the Lords larboard broadside, which was not reCommissioners of the Admiralty, that turned till we were close on her his Majesty's ship Java is no more, weather bow. Both ships now maafter sustaining an action on the 29th nouvred to obtain advantageous posi. instant, for several hours, with the tions, our opponent evidently avoidAmerican frigate Constitution, which ing close action, and firing high to resulted in the capture and ultimate disable our masts, in which he sucdestruction of his Majesty's ship. ceeded too well, having shot away the Captain Lambert being dangerously head of our bowsprit with the jib. wounded in the height of the action, boom, and our running rigging so the melancholy task of writing the much cut as to prevent our preserving detail devolves on me.
the weather-gage. On the morning of the 29th inst. At five minutes past three, finding at eight a. m. off St. Salvador (coast the enemy's raking fire extremely of Brazil), the wind at N. E. we per heavy, Captain Lambert ordered the ceived a strange sail ; made all sail in ship to be laid on board, in which we chase, and soon made her out to be a should have succeeded, had not our large frigate ; at noon prepared for fore-mast been shot away at this moaction, the chase not answering our ment, the remains of our bowsprit private signals, and tacking towards passing over his taffrail ; shortly after us under easy sail ; when about four this the maintopmast went, leaving miles distant she made a signal, and the ship totally unmanageable, with
VOL. VI. PART. II.
most of our starboard guns rendered and wounded, our bowsprit and three useless from the wreck lying over
useless, we them.
should not be justified in wasting the At half past three our gallant cap. lives of more of those remaining, who tain received a dangerous wound in I hope their lordships and the country the breast, and was carried below; will think have bravely defended his from this time we could not fire more Majesty's ship. Under these circum. than two or three guns until a quarter stances, however reluctantly, at 50 mipast four, when our mizen mast was shot nutes past five, ourcolours were lowered away; the ship then fell off a little, and from the stump of the mizen mast, and brought many of our starboard guns we were taken possession of, a little to bear : the enemy's rigging was so after six, by the American frigate Con. much cut that he could not now avoid stirution, commanded by Commo ore shooting a-head, which brought us Bainbridge, who, immediately after asfairly broadside and broadside. Our certaining the state of the ship, resol. main.yard now went in the slings, both ved on burning her, which we had the ships continued engaged in this man- satisfaction of seeing done as soon as ner till 35 minutes past four, we fre- the wounded were removed. Annexed quently on fire in consequence of the I send you a return of the killed and wreck lying on the side engaged. Our wounded, and it is with pain I perceive opponent now made sail a-head out of it so numerous ; also a statement of gun shot, where he remained an hour the comparative force of the two ships, repairing his damages, leaving us an when I hope their lordships will not unmanageable wreck, with only the think the British flag tarnished, almain-mast left, and that tottering. though success has not attended us. Every exertion was made by us during It would be presumptuous ia me to this interval to place the ship in a state speak of Captain Lambert's merits, to renew the action. We succeeded in who, though still in danger from his clearing the wreck of our masts from wound, we entertain the greatest hopes our guns, a sail was set on the stumps of his being restored to the service of the fore-mast and bowsprit, the and his country. weather half of the main-yard remain. It is most gratifying to my feelings ing aloft, the main tack was got for. to notice the gallantry of every officer, ward in the hope of getting the ship seaman, and
marine on board : in jus. before the wind, our helm being still tice to the officers, I beg leave to men. perfect; the effort unfortunately pro. tion them individually. I can never ved ineffectual, from the main-mast speak too highly of the able exertions falling over the side, from the heavy of Lieutenants Hevringham and Burolling of the ship, which nearly cover. chanan, and also of Mr Robinson, ed the whole of our starboard gups. master, who was severely wounded, We still waited the attack of the ene- and Lieutenants Mercer and Davis, of my, he now standing towards us for the royal marines, the latter of whom that purpose ; on his coming nearly also was severely wounded. To Cap. within hail of us, and from his ma. tain Joho Marshall, R. N. who was a næuvre perceiving he intended a posi- passenger, I am particularly obliged tion a-bead, where he could rake us for his exertions and advice through. without a possibility of our returning out the action. To Lieutenant Aplin, a shot, I then consulted the officers, who was on the main deck, and Lieu. who agreed with myself that our ha- tenant Saunders, who commanded on ving a great part of our crew killed the forecastle, I also return my thanks. I cannot but notice the good conduct Weight of metal, 1490. of the mates and midshipmen, many of Crew, 480. whom are killed, and the greater part wounded. To Mr T. C. Jones, surgeon, and his assistants, every praise is Downing Street, March 3, 1813 due, for their unwearied assiduity in the care of the wounded. Lieutenant Dispatches, of which the following Gen. Hislop, Major Walker, and Cap- are copies, were this day received by tain Wood, of his staff, the latter of Earl Bathurst, one of his Majesty's whom was severely wounded, were principal secretaries of State, from solicitous to assist and remain on the Lieutenant General Sir George Pre. quarter deck
I cannot conclude this vost, Bart. Governor-general and Com. letter, withoi expressing my grateful mander-in-chief of the forces in Northacknowledgments, thus publicly, for America : the generous treatment Captain Lam. bert and his officers have experienced
Head-quarlers, Chambly, from our gallant enemy Commodore
Nov. 21, 1812. Bainbridge, and his officers,
My Lord, I have the honour to I have the honour to be, &c.
acquaint your lordship, that the efforts H. D. Chans, First Lieu- of the enemy at Sackett's harbour, on
tenant of his Majesty's Lake Ontario, enabled them to send late ship Java.
out, on the 10th instant, seven sail of P. S. The Constitution has also armed vessels, manned by the crew of suffered severely both in her rigging one of the American frigates, and comand men, having her fore and mizen- manded by some of their naval officers, nasts, main-top-mast, both main-top having on board a considerable de sail-yards, spanker.boom, gaff, and tachment of troops, for the purpose try-sail mast badly shot, and the great- of carrying the port of Kingston by est part of the standing rigging very surprise, and of destroying his Majesty's much damaged, with ten men killed, ship Royal George, then lying there. the commodore, fifth lieutenant, and I have much satisfaction in reporting 45 men, wounded, four of whom are
to your lordship, that the vigilance and since dead.
military skill of Colonel Vincent, who
is in command at Kingston, frustrated Force of the two Ships. their designs; and after many hours
of ineffectual cannonade, the American 28 long 18-pounders.
flotilla hauled off, and on the follow. 16 carronades, 32 pounders.
ing day returned into port. I have 2 long 9-pounders.
also the honour io report to your lord. ship, that, having received information
of the advance of the enemy with their Weight of metal, 10341b.
whole force of regulars and militia en. Ship's company aud supernume. camped at Plattsburgh, from that place raries, 377.
to the village at Champlain, about six
miles from the province line, with the 32 long 24-pounders.
avowed purpose of penetrating into this 22 carronades, 32-pounders.
frontier, I directed the brigade of 1 carronade, 18-pounder.
troops at Montreal, consisting of two companies of the Royals, 7 companies of the 8th or King's, 4 companies of
the Montreal volunteer militia, and the others having wavered respecting ad5th battalion of the embodied Cana. sancing beyond them. dian militia, with one troop of volun
I have the honour to be, &c. teer cavalry, and a brigade of light ar
(Signed) GORGE Prevost. tillery, the whole under the command Earl Bathurst, &c. of Colonel Baynes, to cross the St Lawrence, and advance to the support Head-quarters La Prairie, Nov. 28. of Major-general De Rottenburgh, My Lord,-Since my last report to whose front was threatened by this your lordship from Chambly, the vimovement of the enemy : the troops gour of the enemy's operations against crossed with uncommon expedition on Lower Canada has gradually declined, the evening of Thursday last, the 19th and terminated on the 22d, at noon, in inst, and reached La Prairie that
a complete retreat, which was effected night.
in two divisions on that and the fol. I am happy to inform your lord- lowing days upon Plattsburgh, Bur. ship, that immediately upon the alarm lington, and Albany ; at which places, being given that the enemy were ad- I am informed, they propose to take yancing, the sedentary militia flocked up their winter-quarters. 1 beg leave in from all quarters with a zeal and ala. to transmit to your lordship copies of crity which I cannot too much praise, the general orders I have issued to the and which assures me that I shall de. militia of Lower Canada upon this oc. rive essential assistance from them when casion, as I cannot more properly bring the occasion shall require it. The ene. their active loyalty and their desire to my, since the advance to Champlain, maintain the rights of their Sovereiga have made several reconnoissances be- before your lordship, for the consider. yond the lines into the province ; one ation of his Royal Highness the Prince in particular, on the night of the 19th Regent. with a detachment of cavalry, and a I have the honour to be, &c. body of about 1000 of their regular in
GEORGE PREVOST. fantry, the whole under the command Earl Bathurst, &c. of Lieut-Col. Pike, who is esteemed in the United States an able officer ; but
Downing.street, April 22. falling in unexpectedly with a small A dispatch, of which the following party
of Voyageurs and Indians, one is a copy, was this day received by the of our advanced pickets, by whom they Earl Bathurst, one of his Majesty's were fired upon, they were thrown in. Principal Secretaries of State, from to the greatest confusion, and com- Lieutenant.general Sir George Premenced a fire upon each other, which vost, Bart. governor-general and com- . was attended with a loss of about 50 mander-in-chief of the forces in North of their men in killed and wounded, America :when they dispersed.
Our picket made good their retreat unmolested,
Quebec, Feb. 8, 1813. and without a man being hurt; by se My Lord,- I have the honour to veral deserters, who have since come congratulate your lordship upon the in to us, and some of whom were of signal success which has again attend. the reconnoitering party, we have as. ed his majesty's arms in Upper Ca. certained their loss, and that but a small nada. Brigadier-general Winchester, proportion of the militia accompanied with a division of the forces of the them that night to the linės ; the United States, consisting of upwards
of 1100 men, being the right wing into the Michigan territory, I feel the of Major-General Harrison's army, fullest confidence in the skill and thrown in advance, marching to the bravery of Colonel Proctor, and the attack of Detroit, was completely de. troops under his command, for an ef. feated on the 22d of January last, by fectual resistance to every attempt of Colonel Proctor, commanding in the the enemy in that quarter. A small Michigan territory, with a force which detachment from the royal artillery at he had hastily collected upon the ap- Fort George, with the light infantry proach of the enemy, consisting of a company of the 41st regiment, have small detachment of the 10th royal marched to reinforce Detroit ; they veteran battalion, three companies of are to be re-placed on the Niagara the 41st regiment, a party of the royal frontier, by troops now in motion Newfoundland fencibles, the sailors from Montreal. belonging to the Queen Charlotte, I have the honour to be, &c. and 150 of the Essex militia, not ex- (Signed) G.ORGE Prevost: ceeding 500 regulars and militia, and To the Right Hon. Earl Bathurst, &c about 600 Indians; the result of the action has been the surrender of Bri.
Sandwich, Jan. 25th. gadier-General Winchester, with 500 Sir,--In my last dispatch I acofficers, non commissioned officers, and quainted you, that the enemy was in privates of the American army, and the Michigan territory, marching upwith a loss on their part of nearly the on Detroit, and that I therefore deemlike number in killed and wounded. ed it necessary that he should be at. For the details of this affair, which tacked without delay, with all and reflects the highest credit upon Col. every description of force within my Proctor for tne promptitude, gallant. reach. Early in the morning of the ry, and decision, which he has mani- 19th I was informed of his being in fested upon this occasion, I beg leave possession of Frenchtown, on the river to refer your lordship to his letter to Raisin, 26 miles from Detroit, after Major-Gen. Sheaffe, herewith trans, experiencing every resistance that Mamitied. I have also the honour of jor Reynolds of the Essex militia had transmitting to your lordship, returns it in his power to make, with a 3-pounof the killed and wounded on our part, der well served and directed by Bom. and of the prisoners taken from the bardier Kitson, of the royal artillery, enemy, the latter of which, your lord- and the militia, three of whom he had ship will not fail to observe, more than well trained to the use of it. The exceeded the whole of the regular and retreat of the gun was covered by a militia force which Colonel Proctor brave band of Indians, who made the had to oppose to them. Major-Gen. enemy pay dear for what he had obHarrison, with the main body of his tained. This party, composed of miarmy, consisting of about 2000 men, litia and Indians, with the gun, fell was reported to be four or five days' back eighteen miles to Brown's town, march distant from Brigadier-General the settlement of the brave Wyandots, Winchester's division, advancing in where I directed my force to assemble. the direction of Detroit. I think it On the 21st inst. I advanced twelve not improbable, that, upon hearing of miles to Swan Creek, from whence we the disaster of this division, and the marched to the enemy, and attacked loss of his supplies, he may commence him at break of day on the 22d inst. ; his retreat: but should he persevere and after suffering, for our numbers, a in his endeavours to penetrate farther considerable loss, the enemy's foree