November 13, 2020 12:00 PM EST Cincinnati
Ends November 23, 2020


War of 1812, Lot of 10 Original Newspapers Covering Important Naval Developments

Lot of 10 newspapers. 

Caledonian Mercury. Edinburgh: September 7, 1812. WAR DECLARED: News from his HMS Guerriere July 29, 1812 “…we were proceeding on our way to Halifax to refit, when we were stopped by the North American squadron, and we learned that the AMERICANS HAD DECLARED WAR AGAINST GREAT BRITAIN, and that their squadron was at sea, under the command of Commodore Rodgers, consisting of three frigates and two sloops of war… As soon as the President's proclamation arrived at Halifax, the Adm. proceeded to sea in quest of Rogers… On the 16th when we were separated from our squadron, about 4 pm we gave chase to a large American frigate… We therefore tacked and stood after them… A calm took place and we got our boats out and endeavored to tow the ship, but although every exertion was made, she got away after a chase of 64 hours.… We have reason to believe that it was the Constitution, going out to join the American Commodore.”

Colombian Centinel. Boston: September 16, 1812. CONSTITUTION VS. GUERRIERE: Front page printing of naval official letters including CAPTAIN HULL’S OFFICIAL ACCOUNT OF THE ENGAGEMENT AGAINST THE GUERRIERE: “Sir I have the honor to inform you that on the 19th at 2 PM… with the Constitution under my command, a sail was discovered…bearing E by S or E by SE….All sail was instantly made…and we soon found we came up on her.… As soon as the Constitution was ready for action, I bore down with the intention to bring him to close action immediately; but on our coming within gun shot she gave us a broadside and sailed away…giving us a broadside on the other tack, but without effect; her shot falling short. She continued wearing and maneuvering for about three quarters of an hour, to get a raking position… I immediately made sail to bring the ship up with her, and five minutes before 6 PM being alongside within half a pistol shot, we commenced a heavy fire from all our guns, double shotted with round and grape, and so well directed were they and so warmly kept up, that in 15 minutes his mizzen mast went by the board and his main yard in the slings, and the hull, rigging and sails very much torn to pieces. The fire was kept up with equal warmth for 15 minutes longer, when his mainmast and foremast went taking with them every spar accepting the bowsprit… IN 30 MINUTES AFTER WE GOT FAIRLY ALONGSIDE THE ENEMY AND SHE SURRENDERED, AND HAD NOT A SPAR STANDING AND HER HULL BELOW AND ABOVE THE WATER SO SHATTERED, THAT FEW MORE BROADSIDES MUST HAVE CARRIED HER DOWN. After informing you that so fine a ship as the Guerriere, commanded by an able and experienced officer, had been totally dismasted and otherwise cut to pieces so as to make are not worth towing into port, in the short space of 30 minutes you can have no doubt of the gallantry and good conduct of the officers and the ships company I have the honor to command…" With list of killed and wounded. Also front-page British official accounts of the SURRENDER OF FORT DETROIT including the text of the articles of capitulation signed by Brigadier General William Hull, commanding the Northwest Army of the United States, and Maj. General William Brock commanding his Britannic Majesty's forces in Upper Canada. Worn at right margin with some loss of text, not affecting Captain Hull’s reports.

Colombian Centinel. October 10, 1812. AMERICAN SQUADRON HEADS TO SEA. “On Thursday last the frigate President, 44 guns, Commodore Rodgers; United States, 44, Commodore Decatur; Congress, 36, Capt. Smith, and Argus brig, 14, Capt. Sinclair, left this harbor with fine wind, bound on a cruise. Though we abhor the war that they are engaged in, if they must fight, they have our best wishes for glorious success; and from the superior discipline and energy of the cruise, and the intelligence of the officers, they have also our confidence of their triumph over equal force. The Constitution, Chesapeake and Hornet are in port fitting for sea. The Essex of 32, and Wasp, 18 guns are in Delaware ready for sea.”

Caledonian Mercury. October 15, 1812. CONSTITUTION VS GUERRIERE: Official British account of the engagement between the USS Constitution and HMS Guerriere. Letter from Vice Adm. Sawyer to John Wilson Croker conveying a letter from Capt. James Dacres with an account of the loss of the Guerriere:I AM SORRY TO INFORM YOU OF THE CAPTURE OF HIS MAJESTY'S LATE SHIP GUERRIERE BY THE AMERICAN FRIGATE CONSTITUTION, AFTER SEVERE ACTION, ON THE 19TH AUGUST… we hoisted our colors and fired several shots at her…she hoisted her colors and returned our fire, wore several times to avoid being raked, exchanging broadsides.… And 20 minutes past five our mizzen mast went over the starboard quarter, and brought the ship up the wind; the enemy then placed himself on our larboard bow, raking us… his grape and rifleman sweeping our deck….at 20 minutes past six our fore and mainmast went over the side leaving the ship a perfect unmanageable wreck…. When calling all officers together, they were all of the opinion that any further resistance would only be a needless waste of lives; I ordered, reluctantly, the colors to be struck. The loss of the ship is to be ascribed to the early fall of the mizzen mast, which enabled our opponent to choose his position. I'm sorry to say that we suffered severely in killed and wounded and most severely from grape and musketry, and all 15 killed and 63 wounded, many of them severely… THE FRIGATE PROVED TO BE THE UNITED STATES SHIP CONSTITUTION of 30 24 pounders on her main deck and 24 32 pounders and two 18 pounders on her upper deck and 476 men… The Guerriere was so cut up that all attempts to get her in would have been useless. As soon as the wounded were got out of her they set her on fire….I feel it my duty to state that the conduct of Capt. Hull to our officers to our men has been that of a brave enemy… The greatest attention being paid to the wounded…” With “Complete list of officers, seamen and Marines killed and wounded on board his Majesty ship Guerriere in the action of 19 August 1812.

Colombian Centinel. February 24, 1813. CONSTITUTION VS. JAVA. “Another naval triumph…an officer of the US frigate Constitution has just landed at Newcastle… With dispatches announcing the CAPTURE THE BRITISH FRIGATE JAVA BY THE CONSTITUTION… December 29, 1812 we cried a sail which we soon discovered to be an English frigate. We took in mainsail and royals, tacked ship and stood for her.… A general action with round and grapeshot commenced, the enemy keeping the much greater distance than we wished, but we could not bring him to close action without exposing ourselves to severe raking.… At 2 PM commenced action with good grapeshot canister distance. At 30 minutes past 2 our wheel was shot entirely away…..determined to close with the enemy notwithstanding his raking fire… At 3 the enemy’s bowsprit and jib boom shot away by us.… At 3:15 shot away the enemy’s main topsail topmast.… At 55 minutes past 3 shot away their mizzen mast nearly by the board…. having completely silenced the enemy…we supposed that he had struck… At 20 minutes past 4 the enemy's mainmast went by the board… At the very instance of our preparing to give our broadside the enemy prudently struck his colors. Lieut. Parker was sent on board to take possession of the prize, which proved to be his Majesty ship Java, rated 38 put manning 49 guns, commanded by Capt. Lambert, a distinguished officer (who is mortally wounded) with a crew of upwards of 400 men…

Colombian Centinel. March 24, 1813. HORNET VS. PEACOCK. “Fifth Naval Triumph…on Monday evening handbills were received… announcing the CAPTURE AND DESTRUCTION OF THE BRITISH BRIG THE WAR PEACOCK, OF 19 GUNS, BY THE UNITED STATES SHIP HORNET, OF 16 GUNS, Capt. Lawrence, off Surinam…” With extracts of logbook: “Thursday, 25 February 1813 at 3:30 PM discovered a strange sail bearing down on us… She hoisted English colors… At 4:30 beat to quarters… At 5:25 passing each other, exchanged broadsides within pistol shot… we kept up such a heavy and well directed fire that in less than 15 minutes she made the signal of submission, being cut to pieces, and five minutes later after, her mainmast went by the board. Sent our First Lieut. on board returning with her First Lieut. who reported her to be his Britannic Majesty Majesty's brig Peacock mounting 19 guns and 134 men… her commander Capt. Peake was killed in the action, a great number of her men killed and wounded and that she was sinking fast; we dispatched the boats immediately to take out the wounded in the rest of the prisoners and brought both vessels to anchor, but notwithstanding every exertion was made to save the crew, she unfortunately sank carrying down 10 of her crew, and three of my brave fellows…

Colombian Centinel. June 12, 1813. NAVAL ENGAGEMENT ON LAKE CHAMPLAIN: “The US sloop Growler, of 12, and Eagle, of 10 guns, under Lieut. Smith, left this place for the purpose of annoying the British in the River Chamblee, where they gave chase to two or three gunboats and were drawn into an ambuscade and shoal water; there they were attacked by a body of five or 600 militia and regulars and three gunboats. THE BATTLE ENSUED WHICH LASTED FIVE OR SIX HOURS, DURING WHICH THE EAGLE FOUNDERED AND SOON AFTER THE GROWLER SURRENDERED… The capture the growler gives the enemy the command of the Lake and manned her immediately, and proceeded in search of the President." Account of the ATTACK ON SACKETTS HARBOR. “the British flotilla consisted of the Wolfe, 24 guns, Royal George, 24, Earl Moira, 18, Prince Regent 10, Simcoe, 12, and Seneca 10… daybreak the next day they affected the landing on Horne Island to the number of 800, forded the neck under heavy fire from troops under General Brown… In which several the enemy were killed… The enemy gained the mainland and compelled our troops retreat about a mile… The enemy was checked for nearly an hour and a half… And then retreated taking off their wounded…

Colombian Centinel. June 19, 1813. CHESAPEAKE VS. SHANNON. British account of the capture of the Chesapeake. “It is with pleasure that we congratulate our readers on the CAPTURE THE AMERICAN FRIGATE CHESAPEAKE COMMANDED BY CAPT. LAWRENCE, BY HIS MAJESTY'S SHANNON, CAPT. BROKE, AND AFTER AN ACTION OF 11 MINUTES.… Early in the morning of the 1st the Shannon stood in close to the Boston lighthouse and observed the Chesapeake lying at anchor.… 12:30 she weighed anchor and stood out of the harbor… At 5:30 she luffed up to the Shannon's weather quarter and on her foremast coming in line with the Shannon's mizzen, the latter fired the after gun and others successively until the enemy came directly abreast, when the church Chesapeake fired her whole broadside which the Shannon immediately returned; and here broadside to broadside the action commenced; in five minutes the Chesapeake fell alongside the Shannon and was boarded in her tops as well as on her decks by our gallant countrymen, and in 11 minutes from the commencement the action her three ensigns were hauled down, and soon afterwards replaced the English flag over them… Capt. Broke we understand nobly led the boarders from the quarterdeck, and his we are sorry to say, severely wounded, in the moment of victory, by saber on the head… We rejoice to learn he is in a fair way of recovery…” British account of the funeral of Captain Lawrence: “The respect due to a brave enemy yesterday was shown to the remains of Capt. Lawrence. The corpse was landed from the Chesapeake under discharge of minute guns, and at 2 o'clock reached the Kings wharf, the American ensign was spread over the coffin, on which was placed the sword of the deceased…six captains of the Navy officiated as pallbearers…” Americans surprised by British at Lake Ontario: “Information is just been received that our Army at the head of the Lake Ontario has been surprised in their camp. General's Winder and Chandler, quartermaster Vandeventer, Capt. Jones, four pieces of artillery and 150 men were taken. General Vincent was killed in our camp.

Colombian Centinel. June 26, 1813. CHESAPEAKE VS. SHANNON. “In the ship Henry… Mr. Chew, late master of the Chesapeake frigate and two midshipmen arrived as passengers. Mr. Chew was the bearer of an official account of the loss that frigate… which was immediately transmitted to Washington…" List of killed and wounded in the engagement. Funeral of Capt. Lawrence: “by the British naval and military orders for the internment of Capt. Lawrence and Lieut. Ludlow, with the honors of war, every mark of respect was paid to their memories. The Garrison was ordered to wear black crêpe on their left arm.” Addition description from an officer of the Chesapeake: “in six or seven minutes after the fight began the cockpit was literally so filled with wounded, that we could hardly get to anyone without stepping on another; so that we could not get the poor fellows all dressed until late the next day. The weather was all the time extremely fortunate, and we have now all the wounded in a fine hospital.

The Times. London: July 9, 1813. CHESAPEAKE VS. SHANNON. Sec. of the Admiralty John Wilson Croker speaks to Parliament on the capture of the Chesapeake by HMS Shannon:The action which he (Capt. Broke) fought with the Chesapeake was…unequaled….by any engagement which graced the naval annals of Great Britain. The enemy ship was superior in size, superior in weigh of metal, superior numbers. She entered into the contest with a previous conviction of all their superior advantages, and with a confirmed confidence of victory… All of the superiority serve but to heighten the brilliancy of Capt. Broke’s achievement… Capt. Broke was wounded… On the deck of the enemy's ship… The Chesapeake had made every possible preparation for the engagement. She came out of harbor in full sail…. The order for boarding was given by Capt. Broke….The boarders rushed at once and the same moment from every part of the Shannon into the enemy ship. The Chesapeake was carried and was in our possession in the course of three minutes.… Capt. Broke was cut down by saber blow, on the forecastle of the Chesapeake…” Holes at centerfold with some loss of text.

Estimate: $300 - $500


Have a Similar Item?

Consign With Us


Cowan’s Cincinnati Office offers an in-house, full-service shipping department which is unparalleled in the auction industry. Shipping costs are provided with your finalized invoice 24-48 hours after auction. For furniture and oversized items, we recommend using third-party services. For more information, click HERE or contact  

NOTE: All pickups and preview are by appointment only. To make an appointment, please call 513-871-1670 or email