New PDF release: Blue Water Patriots: The American Revolution Afloat

By James M. Volo

In 1775, it appeared impossible that the yank colonists may well conquer the overpowering army superiority of significant Britain. but the belligerent colonists have been convinced they can defeat the British military they so despised. however, their one nice worry used to be that they wouldn't be capable of conquer the presence of the Royal military. someway notwithstanding, the colonists have been capable of withstand the British at sea, allure able allies, and effectively finish their quest for independence. the first concentration of this paintings is the interval ahead of 1779 earlier than the French had come to the help of the fledgling American nation—when the Blue Water Patriots faced the Royal army by myself, counting on little greater than ingenuity and courage.In 1775, it used to be unattainable that the yankee colonists may have conquer the overpowering army superiority of serious Britain. but the belligerent colonists appeared definite that they can defeat the British military they so despised. however, the single nice worry shared by way of all colonists used to be that they wouldn't be capable to triumph over the presence of the Royal army. but, someway, the colonists have been capable of face up to the British at sea, allure able allies to help them, and effectively finish their quest for independence. the yankee Revolution can appropriately be seen as a part of a protracted world wide naval clash among France and Britain starting with the fantastic Revolution in 1688 and finishing with the British victory at Trafalgar in 1805 throughout the Napoleonic Wars. This used to be a interval during which the armed merchantmen of the age of alternate have been changed by way of real warships whose job was once to manage the ocean lanes. the yankee Revolution was once a watershed during this regard with more advantageous warship designs, new applied sciences, more desirable gunpowder and communications, and leading edge strategies. even supposing French participation within the struggle for independence was once the most important, the first concentration of this paintings is the interval earlier than 1779, while the colonists faced the Royal army by myself with in simple terms their ingenuity and braveness to guard them.Every tuition baby understands that the yank Revolution started on Lexington eco-friendly in April, 1775, yet what percentage are acutely aware that during 1764 a Royal army cutter, St. John, engaged within the suppression of smuggling, was once fired upon through Rhode Islanders; that during 1769, the profit sloop Liberty used to be seized and burned by way of the folk of Newport; or that during 1772, the military cutter Gaspee used to be burned within the evening via armed patriots attacking from small boats. those Blue Water Patriots fought the 1st battles at the highway to American independence. this is often their tale.

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27 Fitting out a privateer was an expensive venture, and those vessels that did not return value for investment were often left in the anchorage or converted to speedy merchandise carriers. Moreover, privateers denied valuable materials, seamen, and officers to the Continental and state navies. Although the owners of private warships encountered the same difficulties in building and fitting their vessels, the strain they placed upon the formal navies in terms of acquiring personnel from among the maritime population was remarkable.

Consequently, privateers relied upon their speed to make captures and to make good their escape from patrolling British warships. They paid for this advantage by carrying fewer guns and sacrificing what little cargo capacity they had to essential stores and extra crewmen. The usual plan was to overtake and attack unarmed or lightly armed merchant vessels; force their surrender under the threat of a broadside; and detach a few men as a prize crew who would make for a friendly American or foreign port where both ship and cargo would be condemned as a prize.

These were armed with approximately 1,300 cannon plus a proportional number of swivel guns (man-killing weapons larger than a musket and too heavy to fire unsupported). A number of period documents suggest that the number of cannon in the main battery and the number of swivels deployed were approximately equal. 19 It was the Continental captains and scores of subordinate officers and seamen who carried the naval war to the most sensitive parts of the British empire. Yet the Continental Navy was never very large in terms of its available personnel.

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