Preservation, Education, and Commemoration of Naval History
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On 10 September 1813, a U.S. Navy squadron under Master Commandant Oliver Hazard Perry defeated a British squadron at the Battle of Lake Erie, during the War of 1812. During the battle, Perry hauled down his “Don’t Give Up The Ship” flag from the badly damaged U.S. Brig Lawrence, boarded a small boat and was rowed over to the undamaged U.S. Brig Niagara. He then proceeded to break the British line and carry the day. Following the battle, he send the famous message “We have met the enemy and they are ours.” The victory secured the waters of Lake Erie for the United States.
Read our publication “Battle of Lake Erie: Building the Fleet in the Wilderness” online here: http://www.navyhistory.org/battle-of-lake-erie-building-the-fleet-in-the-wilderness/
On 19 August 1812, during the War of 1812, U.S. Frigate Constitution defeated the British frigate HMS Guerriere. British cannonballs seemed to bounce off Constitution's hull during the battle, leading to her timeless nickname, “Old Ironsides.” This painting by Anton Otto Fischer depicts Guerriere's masts going over the side as Constitution rakes her from ahead. Courtesy Miss Katrina S. Fischer. NHHC image NH 48472-KN.
On 14 August 1813, U.S. Brig Argus was captured by H.M. Brig Pelican during a battle off the coast of Britain. Among the casualties was Commander William Henry Allen, commanding officer of Argus. He was buried by the British in an elaborate full honors funeral at Plymouth, England.
This painting, “Chase of the Constitution, July 1812,” by Anton Otto Fischer, depicts the boats of U.S. Frigate Constitution towing her in a calm, while she was being pursued by a squadron of British warships in the opening month of the War of 1812. After a 3 day chase off New Jersey, Constitution finally escaped the British squadron on 19 July 1812. NHHC image NH 85542-KN.