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SKETCHES OF PAUL JONES. We may safely conclude that no rica, happening to be at Piscataway,
one will read “ The Pilot,” in New-England, he was induced to without feeling some interest and curi- desert his national colours and enlist osity respecting the mysterious charac- under those of the revolutionists, ter who forms the prominent feature in prompted partly by a vindictive spirit, the tale; and that particulars, however and partly by the predatory prospects scanty, will be acceptable, of a man offered by the approaching war—at the who for a time kepi the coasts of the same time changing his name from united kingdom in a state of alarm; John Paul to Paul Jones. for, although his name is cautiously For this new sphere of action his withheld, there are allusions to acts and enterprizing character and talents were circumstances which can apply to none admirably adapted; and these, added but the once celebrated Paul Jones. to his thorough knowledge of the nor
He was born and bred on the estate thern coasts of England, soon brought of Lord Selkirk, near Kirkudbright; him into notice, and pointed him out his father, by name Paul, a steady me as a fit actor in the marauding schemes. thodical Scotchman, being head gar- then in agitation. Accordingly, in the dener to Lord Selkirk, and young Paul latter part of 1777 he was actively emacting in a subordinate capacity in the ployed as Commander, in fitting out the same establishment, as appears from Ranger* privateer, mounting 18 guns, the following story on record of father besides swivels, and manned with a des and son.
In the gardens were two perate crew of 150 men. In the course summer houses corresponding with of the winter he put to sea, and made each other. One day Lord Selkirk two captures on the European side of during his walks observed a man lock- the Atlantic, both of which were sent ed up in one of them, and looking out into a French port. In the month of of the window in the other summer April, 1778, he for the first time aphouse, looking out of the corresponding peared in the neighbourhood of his nawindow appeared young John Paul. tive place, and forthwith proceeded to “ Why are those lads confined ?” said execute a well digested play for burnLord Selkirk to the gardener. “Mying the town and shipping of WhiteLord, I caught the rascal stealing your haven. Having made the land, he lordship’s fruit.” “ But there are two cautiously kept in the offing to avoid what has your son done, is he too observation, but at the close of evening, guilty?” “Oh no, please your lord- the necessary preparations being made, ship, I just put him in for symmetry.” he stood in for the shore, and at mid
In this service he remained for some night, having approached sufficiently years; but at length, being detected in near, his boats well manned, and armcertain knavish tricks which would ed by thirty daring fellows, in deep sihave entitled him to confinement in the lence pushed off from the vessel. summer house on stronger grounds small battery commanded the bay and than symmetry, he was dismissed, and entrance of the harbour; it was necesfollowing the bent of a wild and ardent sary to secure this before they could disposition, betook himself to a sea-far- venture on ulterior measures; according life, for which his habits, and the ingly having made good their landing, practical knowledge gained by a long the party rushed upon the garrison be residence near a sea port, had fully fore any alarm could be given, and prepared him. He commenced his made them prisoners. The guns were naval career as a common' sailor ; but immediately spiked, and every thing his talents soon rendering him conspicu- seemed to favour the final success of ous, he was appointed mate, and in this their enterprize. It was dead low wacapacity made several voyages to the ter, and the vessels were laying side by West Indies, where he finally became side without a chance of preservation, master of a vessel. Soon after the should the flames once get head. rupture between this country and Ame * In some accounts she is called the Revenge.
tle expecting such a visit, no watches of the following narrative of that day's were on the look out, and the inhabi- proceedings, very different from those tants were buried in sleep. In full se- which the public gave him credit for, curity and confidence the armed force proving that, with all bis failings, his dispersed themselves, depositing match- heart was still susceptible of impreses ready primed amidst combustibles sions which might have raised him, as on the decks and rigging. Notbing much as his unjustifiable deeds had himore was required for their destruction therto lowered him, in the estimation of than the signal for lighting the trains. his countrymen. Early in the mornAt this critical moment a loud knock- ing, the privateer had been observed ing was heard in the main street, and making her way up the river, her guns voices of alarm were heard in every and warlike appearance attracting direction. It was evident that they much attention and curiosity, for veswere discovered, and nothing remained sels of her description were seldom but to commence in baste the work of seen working up the intricate passage destruction, for the alarm had now be- of the Dee. Not a suspicion was encome general, and crowds were seen tertained of her real character, but the running towards the piers, attracted by male part of the population conjecturthe lights, which the retiring partyed her to be a visitor equally unwelwere hastily throwing on board the comema ship of war coming up for the vessels ; fortunately without effect, one purpose of impressment. Accordingly only being seriously scorched, the at an early hour (Loru Selkirk being crews and townsmen succeeded in ex. fortunately in London), Lady Selkirk tinguishing the flames before they was informed of the circumstance, and reached the rigging. Foiled in their a request was made by the men serattempt, the privateer's men regained vants that they might absent themselves their boats, and putting off, reached for the purpose of concealment. The their ship in safety. On mustering- vessel had no sooner anchored, than one only of the party was missing, she was obseved to despatch an armed and to him were the people of White boat. The crew on landing seemed haven indebted for their preservation ; to have no particular object in view; for, influenced either by conscientious and after remaining some time, strolling motives or self-interest, he quitted bis up and down the country, took to their companions when engaged about the boat and returned on board. Before, harbour, and running up the main however, the people had recovered street, knocked at every door as he from their first alarm, the boat was passed, roused the sleepers from their again observed to push off, and in a beds, called upon ıhem to rise and few minutes a strong body of armed save their lives and property.
men landed on the beach without interHaving failed in this enterprize, ruption; not as before did they stroll Jones stretched across the Solway about, but, forming in regular order, Firth, towards the coast of Scotland, marched directly to the castle, which and with the early dawn entered the they immediately surrounded, and then, river Dee, forming the harbour of for the first time, a suspicion of the real Kirkcudbright. A little above its character of such unexpected visitors junction with the sea the river widens was excited. Lady Selkirk, who, with into a sort of estuary, and here on a her children, were the only members promontory, or rather island, where of the family then resident in the casthe river is about a mile and a half in tle, had just finished breakfast, wher width, stands St. Mary's Isle, the Cas. she received a summons to appear betle of Lord Selkirk, and here, within a fore the officer commanding the deshort distance of a spot endeared to tachment; she obeyed with considerabim by the strongest ties and earliest ble fear, which was not diminished up, associations, soon after sun-rise Jones on a nearer view of the visitors, whose dropped anchor, with feelings, if we ferocious looks, and ragged dress, too may judge from the tenor of 'a letter plainly showed their hostile intentions ; which will be mentioned in the course and, as it was evident that plunder was
their object, the worst might be expect- pected. This he declared was the obed, in case of resistance. They were ject of their first visit, and having failarmed with every variety of weapon; ed in it, they returned on board, when, muskets, pistols, swords; and one sav- after some murmuring, they insisted age looking fellow bore an American on again landing and plundering the tomahawk over his shoulder. Two house. To this he was obliged to conofficers had the charge of the party; sent, though with great reluctance, adone of them coarse and rude in lan- ding, as a proof of his innocence, that guage and behaviour ; the other, on he would endeavour to purchase the the contrary, was not only courteous plunder they had so disgracefully and respectful—but even apologized to brought off, from the crew, and transLady Selkirk, regretting the unpleasant mit (if not the whole) whatever he duty in which it was his unfortunate could procure, to her ladyship. Not lot to appear as a principal. Their hearing again for several years, all first inquiry was for Lord Selkirk : on hope, of course, was given up of the being assured that he was not in the fulfilment of his promise, when, to her country some disappointment was ma- great surprise, in the spring of 1783, nifested. After a short pause, the lat- the whole was returned, carriage paid, ter officer said he must then request precisely in the same state in which it her Ladyship to produce all her plate. had been carried away, to all appearShe replied, that the quantity in the ance never having been unpacked, the castle was very small, but what there very tea leaves remaining in the tea-pot was should be immediately given as they were left after the breakfast on up; and accordingly the whole was the day of capture. The report of his laid before them, even to the silver tea. landing, rapidly spread through the pot used at breakfast which had not country, attended with every variety of been washed out. The officer on re- exaggeration by the time it reached ceiving it directed his men to pack up London. Lord Selkirk received it every article, again apologizing for his with the additional particulars, that his conduct on an occasion which he call- family were all made prisoners and his ed a dirty business, and then taking castle burnt to the ground. Heimmeleave, at the head of his men returned diately hurried to the north, and it was to the vessel, leaving the family not a not till he had gone half way that he little rejoiced at their escape. Still, learned the real truth. On clearing however, as the ship did not get under the land, Jones stood to the westward, weigh, fears were entertained of a se- and towards evening, making the Irish cond visit, and Lady Selkirk lost no coast, entered Belfast Loch, capturing time in sending off her children, and or burning as he proceeded several removing whatever property was likely fishing boats. He was soon observed to become a source of temptation, to a by Captain Burdon, of the Drake sloop place of security. Her fears were for- of war, of 14 guns and 100 men; contunately groundless, and in a few hours, ceiving the privateer to be a merchantshe had the satisfaction of seeing the man, a boat was despatched for the privateer under weigh without offering purpose of impressing her crew. further molestation.
coming alongside, the man of war's Some days afterwards she received men immediately boarded, and were as a letter from Paul Jones himself, writ. immediately secured. Jones however ten in a romantic, almost poetical style. did not think it prudent to persevere in He entreated her pardon for the late his progress up the bay, in the presence affront, which he assured her was so
of an armed vessel in the king's serfar from being planned or sanctioned vice, and accordingly put about. Capby him, that he had done every thing tain Burdon's suspicions were immediin his power to prevent its taking ately excited by this measure and the place; but his officers and crew insisto evident detention of his boat, and not a ed on the attempt, hoping to secure the moment was lost in giving chace and person of Lord Selkirk, for whose ran- clearing for action. On coming up som a considerable sum might be ex
with the enemy, Captain Burdon open
ed a spirited fire, but owing to the capturing in his passage many valuable darkness of the night he was unable to prizes, amongst others a store ship continue it with effect, and the vessels from Quebec, all of which he ordered separated. But as soon as it was light to France. On the 14th of Septemthe engagement was gallantly renewed, ber, they were off Dunbar, and seen to and continued for upward of an hour, capture two prizes close in shore. No when Captain Burdon and his first competent force was at that time in the lieutenant being killed, twenty of his north, of which he seems to have been crew disabled, a topmast shot away, perfectly aware, for, despatching the and the ship dreadfully cut up, the vessels of the squadron in different diDrake was compelled to surrender. rections, le resolved on the bold and During the action the prisoners on hazardous attempt of burning the shipboard ihe privateer, were kept in irons, ping in Leith harbour, and collecting but on its ceasing they were 'all sent on iribute from the defenceless towns on shore in the detained fishing boats. the Fifeshire coast; and, dashing up By this time, the coast on both sides the Firth of Forth, he came in sight of of the Channel being generally alarm- Edinburgh on the evening of Septemed, Paul Jones felt it unsafe to remain ber 16. The wind blowing strong in that quarter, and therefore hastened from the westward, and the tide runwith his prize towards Brest, which ning down, he came to an anchor unport he succeeded in making without der the island of Inch Keith, nearly opinterruption. On his arrival, he com- posite to Kirkcaldy; on the following municated the result of his cruize to Dr. morning he weighed, and endeavoured Franklin, the American representa- to beat up the Leith roads, but the tive, then resident in Paris, and it has breeze increasing to a gale, he sprung been generally supposed that the Doc- one of his top-masts, and was obliged tor, so far from approving, strongly to bear up, running down the Firth censured his piratical attack upon St. with such speed that he was soon out Mary's Isle, insisting on his restoring of sight. Foiled in his attempt, he resuch unjustifiable plunder. That this joined his squadron, and proceeded to representation is not true to the full ex- cruize off the coast of England, where tent, the fact of the abovementioned let- on the 23d of September, he fell in ter, written a few days after the event, with a British convoy from the Baltic, is a sufficient proof.
escorted by his Majesty's ship Serapis, In the course of the following win- Captain Pearson, of 44 guns, and ter, he appears to have exchanged the Countess of Scarborough, armed ship of command of the Ranger for a frigate 20 guns, commanded by Captain Thoof 40 guns and 370 men, called the mas Piercy, which meeting occasioned Bon Homme Richard, acting as a com
one of the most memorable actions modore, with an additional force of the ever recorded. Captain Pearson's Alliance frigate, of 36 guns and 300 conduct, is, indeed, beyond all praise. men, the Vengeance brig, of 14 guns We give it to the reader in his own and 70 men, and a cutter of 18 guns, words—being an official communicaall in the service of Congress; thétion to the Admiralty. Pallas, a French frigate of 32 grins Captain's account of his capture-concluding with
(Tben follows in the London Magazine the British and 275 men, was also added to the the remarks " that two essential pieces of service squadron.
to our country have arisen from it--the one in who:
ly oversetting the cruise and intentions of this fying Sailing from Port l’Orient in July squadron; the other in rescuing the whole of a valur1779, he appeared off the coast of Ker able convoy from falling into the hands of the
enemy.'] ry, where be landed a boat's crew in The King was so well pleased withi the hope of bringing off some sheep, the behaviour of the two captains and but the country people assembling in their officers and men, that he conferdefence of their property, secured the red 'the honour of knighthood on Capassailants, and sent them prisoners to tain. Pearson, and soon afterwards Tralee jail. From thence he continu- made Captain Piercy Post-Captain, ed his course, and sailing north about, and promoted the other officers. The ran down the east coast of Scotland, service they had performed deserved
indeed every reward ; and so sensible command of Captain Burnet, to prowere the Directors of the Royal Ex- ceed without delay from Spithead, for change Assurance Company of their the protection of the Scotch metropoobligations to these excellent officers lis. . So strict indeed were bis orders for protecting the rich fleets under to make the best of his way, that Captheir care, that they voted their thanks tain Burnet did not think himself justito both; and as a further testimony of fied in spreading his squadron as wide their approbation, requested Captain as he could; though had he done so, Pearson's acceptance of a piece of there is every probability that be plate worth 100 guineas, and Captain would have intercepted Jones when Piercy of another valued at 50 guineas. beating about in the North Sea in his
Although Captain Pearson was not disabled state, before he was able to permitted to go on shore, and make reach the Texel. his case known to Sir Joseph Yorke, Having lost the Bon Homme Richthis Ambassador, by his representa ard, be shifted his fag into the Allitions to their High Mightinesses the ance,* and the squadron no longer States General, prevailed on them to actiog in concert, each ship was left cause the wounded seamen belonging singly to shift for itself; and in Januar to the Serapis and the armed ship to ry or February, 1780, Jones escaped be landed; and farther urged them to the vigilance of our cruisers, reached detain, and to order to be delivered up, Corunna, having on board Captain both the ships and their crews, Gustavus Cunningham, a celebiated “which," he said “the Pirate, Paul character, whose case in m many points Jones of Scotland, who is a rebel sub- resembled bis own. ject, and a criminal of the state, had Early in the disturbances with Ametaken." This request was refused, rica Cunningham had taken an active and the only effect of his remonstran: part against his country, and rendered ces was, that they should not allow the himself particularly obnoxious to Gosprices to be sold there, but gave orders ernment ; but at length he was fortythat they should depart from their ports nately captured in a private armed cutas they came. The States General ter which he commanded, and carried did not on this occasion behave with into New York. The Americans were that spirit and dignity which so faith- so well aware of his services, and the ful an ally as Great Britain had been danger to which he was now exposed, to them, had a right to expect. In that they took every means in their spite of this pretended order that they power to procure his exchange ; and should quit the Texel, however, they as a last effort, sent a very strong resuffered them to remain ; and it cost monstrance to Sir George Collier, then Sir Joseph Yorke infinite trouble to commanding the Raisonnable off New procure the release of the prisoners York, threatening severe retaliation : they had on board, every obstacle be- for which purpose, Henry Hamilton, ing thrown in his way, by their calling Esq. Lieutenant-Governor of Dehors; themselves sometimes French and Philip Degean, a Justice of Peace; and sometimes Americans. At last, how. William Lambe, Captain of Volunever, the prisoners were released; and teers; then prisoners, were singled out the squadron, notwithstanding a long by the Governor of Virginia : a young and close blockade, stole out in a dark gentleman of fortune, also, was put in night, and effected their escape to Dun- irons, and confined in a dungeon at kirk.
Boston :-on all of whom it was deterThe appearance of Jones in so large mined to proceed in every respect as a ship in the Firth of Forth, had excit- Cunningham should be treated in Enged, as may well be supposed, the great. land. To their
remonstrance Sir est alarm; and the Admiralty, a ware George Collier sent a firm and spirited of the unprotected state of the northern reply, denying that any of his prisonpart of the kingdom, directed a squa- ers were treated with inhumanity; but dron, consisting of the Prudent of 64 * Or another of the same name, as when after gins, and some frigates, under the wards mentioned she is stated to mount only za