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Sunday, August 31, 2008

August 31. 1779
At 3AM we gave chase to two sails and at about 8AM we saw that they were the Poor Richard and Vengeance. We made our signal to them and then proceeded to chase another sail to windward. At about noon the prize struck her colors. I went with a crew of 30 men under Lt. Buckley to man the prize which proved to be the Letter of Marque Union coming from London for Quebec, laden with military supplies for the British in America. She mounted 22 nine pounders. At mid afternoon we saw the Poor Richard make signal for the Alliance to chase another sail to windward but Alliance did not respond. All afternoon the sea continued to rise making it difficult to bring off the prisoners, 55 in all who were drunk and threatened mutiny. After nearly being swamped some of us returned to the Alliance in her cutter after taking some of the English prisoners to the Poor Richard. Mr. Buckley was forced to remain on the prize with some of the other people.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

August 30. 1779
Last night we took a large prize, the Letter of Marque Betsy, John Fisher captain, 500 tons, 22 nine pounders, from Liverpool bound for Antigua loaded with cargo. We gave chase starting at half past midnight. When we got into her wake Cap. Landy ordered her to strike but instead we came under musket fire from her. She tried to come about to give us a broadside but Alliance raked her stern twice destroying much of her rigging at which point she struck her colors. It took until six AM before she was repaired and ready to sail. We took off her crew aboard the Alliance and they are under guard below decks. Our Masters Mate Thomas Fitzgerald was put on board of her as prize master along with several of our people. Mr. Fitzgerald was told to follow Alliance as best he could and if separated make his way to Bergen Norway or Dunkirk. We still have not seen the rest of our squadron these past three days but we continue to the northeast off the west coast of Scotland. We aim for Cape Wrath where is set a meeting place for our squadron.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

August 27. 1779
Earlier today we continued waiting off the Irish coast to see if we could recover Cutting Lunt and his boat crew but a gale was brewing to the south and bearing down on us therefore the Poor Richard made signal this afternoon to prepare to get underway. Many of his former mates took it hard. At half past seven the Poor Richard made signal to stand to the NNW. The Richard led the way, followed by Vengeance, Pallas and then Alliance. The Richard fired a gun every quarter of an hour and we were able to make out her top lights until about midnight when Lt. Buckley reported to Cap. Landy that none of our squadron was in sight because of the heavy weather. At 3AM while I had the wheel, Cap. Landy ordered our course to be altered 2 points to the north as he explained the compass pointed falsely in this region of the coast of Ireland.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

August 26. 1779
We spoke the Poor Richard today and she reported that neither Master Lunt’s boat nor the Cerf have been seen all day. Guns were fired throughout the day but to no effect. The prize taken by the Poor Richard’s boats the day before yesterday proved to be the brigantine Fortune bound from Newfoundland to Bristol laden with blubber oil and staves.

Monday, August 25, 2008

August 25. 1779
Last evening about 10PM we heard the Poor Richard fire a gun but she made no signal and this morning at 8AM we saw the Cerf Cutter set all sail towards the Irish Coast. Today we hear that as Poor Richard drifted towards shore last evening she sent out her barge to tow her around. About 10PM the people on the barge, several of them being British, cut the tow line and made for shore to escape. Cutting Lunt, the Richard’s master and some men set out after them in the jolly boat and have not since returned, it being foggy. The Poor Richard has been firing guns throughout the day to recall her boat and the Cerf. This we hear from Captain Landy after his being on board the Richard again today to confer with Cap. Jones.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

August 24. 1779
At 11AM we saw a sail to the NNW and made signal to the squadron and then set all sails to make chase. As we passed the Poor Richard at about 1PM she made signal for us to drop behind her and accordingly we did so. At 3PM it became calm and our ships could make no way. The Poor Richard’s boats were sent after the chase which was about 5 miles ahead and have yet to return. In the later afternoon the Poor Richard made signal for all captains to go on board of her.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

August 23. 1779
Pleasant weather at meridian. At 1AM the Pallas appeared on our weather beam after being out of site of the squadron. The Poor Richard who was ahead of us fired three shots at Pallas perhaps thinking her to be an enemy vessel. The Richard tacked about but without signals that we could discern putting her on a tack contrary to ours. Soon she almost came aboard of us. Cap. Landy ordered mainsail haul putting our sails on the masts and the Richard put her helm hard alee so that she passed safely by. It was reported that Lt. Degge who was on our forecastle at the time swore up and down at the poor seamanship of the Poor Richard. At 8AM we raised the Irish coast.

Friday, August 22, 2008

August 22. 1779
This day we have fresh breezes with rough sea. This morning our squadron was in chase of a large ship with Poor Richard leading the way followed by the Vengeance. When the Poor Richard was closing with the chase a small brig nearby struck her colors. She proved to be the Irish Mayflower, Thomas Moloney master, bound from Limerick to London laden with butter and salt provisions. The Poor Richard and the rest of the squadron hove to so that the prize could be manned. Our people complained and grumbled when they saw that the Poor Richard took off potatoes and other provisions thinking that they did not get their share.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

August 21. 1779
Moderate breezes and hazy at meridian. In the morning we spied 5 sails to the SE. The Poor Richard made signal for us to chase. At noon we were still about nine miles distant. The Poor Richard made a signal at about 2PM which we could not make out due to the haze. We kept up the chase until about 4PM when she made a lee lurch. We did the same with Captain Landy telling us that he was trying to get the chase to turn on us. Instead she went close to the wind again and we could not gain on her. At 9PM we wore ship and returned to squadron and spoke the Poor Richard telling them the chase appeared to be an East Indiaman or a war ship of 50 guns.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

August 19. 1779
Today the Monsieur gave chase to a sail to westward but later gave over the chase. At 5PM we saw another sail and Monsieur gave chase bringing her back at 6PM. She proved to be the Dutch Brig Verwagting which had been taken as a prize 8 days before by the British brig Eagle from Liverpool. She was laden with brandy and wine, bound from Barcelona to Dunkirk. At 7PM we all hove to.

Monday, August 18, 2008

August 18. 1779
Fine weather today at meridian. At 1PM we saw 2 sail on the lee bow and the Poor Richard made signal for the Cerf to chase with Alliance to assist her. At 10PM spoke the Poor Richard who ordered us to our station. Spoke the Poor Richard and again at 9AM.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

August 16. 1779
We have pleasant weather this day sailing S. 60 degrees West at meridian. In the afternoon the Poor Richard sent her small boat for to carry Cap. Landy on board to confer with Cap. Jones. At 3AM we set our topgallant sails with a fine breeze. In the morning the Monsieur gave chase to a sail in the NW quarter.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

August 14, 1779
For the past several days we have been making preparations to make a cruise. It is said that we will sail to the west of Ireland, around the Orkney Islands and across the North Sea taking any prizes that we find and sending them in to Dunkirk, Ostend or Bergen, ending our cruise at Texel. Accordingly, this morning at 4AM all hands were called and we got underway in company with the Poor Richard, the Pallas, the Vengeance, the cutter Cerf, the Monsieur and the brig Granville. At 6AM we saw a fleet in our south east quarter consisting of 42 sail. Poor Richard made a signal to heave about and stand to the northward. At 10AM our little fleet hove about and stood to the southward. At half past 11 Commodore Jones made a signal to form a line at meridian. The Cerf spoke the convoy of the fleet that had been in sight all morning and found them to be French bound from Nantes to Brest.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

August 9. 1779
Yesterday the harbor pilot came on board and with fair wind Alliance got underway at 9AM and came to under Isle Groix at 1PM. Today the Poor Richard followed and came to anchor nearby us at 4PM. Soon after anchoring Cutting Lunt went on shore with several men to bury a boy that fell from a yardarm onto the Poor Richard’s deck right at the feet of Cap. Jones.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

August 7. 1779
We loosed our sails to dry after a couple days of thick weather. Captain Landy has ordered us to make preparations for sailing tomorrow morning. Yesterday Cutting Lunt and the Poor Richard Gunner returned from Nantes with 29 new recruits for the Richard.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

August 3. 1779
People employed at sundry small jobs. Loosed our sails to dry today. This morning Robert Towers was given 100 lashes with a cat-o-ninetails on the Poor Richard gangway as part of his punishment after being found guilty at court martial for inciting mutiny and being the ring leader for taking the Poor Richard to England. He still must face 150 more lashes to complete his punishment.