By Claude Berube, John Rodgaard
Charles Stewart’s lifetime of crusing and wrestle at the excessive seas opponents that of Patrick O’Brien’s fictional hero, Jack Aubrey. Stewart held extra sea instructions (11) than the other U.S. army captain and served longer (63 years) than any officer in American naval historical past. He commanded every kind of warship, from sloop to ship-of-the-line, and served each president from John Adams to Abraham Lincoln.Born in Philadelphia throughout the American Revolution, Stewart met President Washington and went to sea as a cabin boy on a merchantman ahead of age 13. In March 1798, at age nineteen, he got a naval fee one month sooner than the dep. of the military used to be verified. Stewart went directly to an illustrious naval occupation: Thomas Jefferson famous his Mediterranean exploits through the Barbary Wars, Stewart instructed James Madison on the outset of the battle of 1812, and Stewart knowledgeable many destiny senior naval officers—including David Porter, David Dixon Porter, and David G. Farragut—in 3 wars. He served as a pallbearer at President Lincoln’s funeral. Stewart cemented his recognition as commander of the Navy’s strongest frigate, the USS structure. No different captain commanded this send for an extended wartime interval or via extra naval engagements. Undefeated in conflict, together with defeating the British warships Cyane and Levant at the same time, either send and captain got here to be often called “Old Ironsides.”
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Additional resources for A Call to the Sea: Captain Charles Stewart of the USS Constitution
On 12 January 1802 Navy Secretary Smith issued orders to form a second squadron to be fitted out and sent to the Mediterranean. The squadron was originally to be commanded by Como. Thomas Truxtun, but Truxton threatened to resign when he learned he would have to command not only the squadron, but also his own flagship, the Chesapeake. President Jefferson took the commodore at his word and Secretary Smith dismissed him. Como. Edward Preble was also considered, but he was ill at the time so command ultimately was given to Como.
11333$ $CH2 05-20-05 13:09:44 PS PAGE 21 A Call to the Sea commerce for centuries and American enterprise since independence: the Barbary States of North Africa. Charles Stewart was aboard the Chesapeake in the summer of 1801 when word came that the bashaw of Tripoli, the North African ruler most aggressive against American commercial interests, had declared war on the United States. 23 He did this shortly after assuming the presidency on 4 March 1801. Thomas Jefferson was all too aware of seizures of American merchantmen and their crews by the Barbary States, and especially by the bashaw of Tripoli.
The wind increased; the weather thickened. M. the New York signaled, stating she wanted to speak with Stewart. Stewart directed Lieutenant Caldwell to have Syren heave to with the brig’s head in a suitable position to receive New York’s hail. As Syren was lying to, Stewart expected New York to heave to herself at some small distance to windward of his ship, but the frigate continued her run toward the brig. According to one of Stewart’s midshipmen, F. ’’4 The New York tried to maneuver ahead of the Syren, then turned to heave to into the wind.