New York, the 11th of the original 13 states, ratified the Constitution 26 July 1788.
(Fr: t. 1,130; l. 145’5”; b. 38’1”; dr. 11’9”; cpl. 340; a. 26 18 pdr., 10 9–pdr.)
The second New York, a 36-gun frigate, was built by public subscription by the citizens of New York for the United States Government; laid down in August 1798 by Peck and Carpenter, New York City; launched 24 April 1800; and commissioned in October 1800, Captain Richard V. Morris in command.
One of the group of five frigates built by the States for the Federal Government to supplement the original six provided for by the Act of 17 March 1794, New York entered the Navy when the “quasi-war” with France was being fought in the Atlantic and Caribbean where French warships preyed on American commerce. Departing New York 22 October 1800, the ship sailed for the Caribbean, convoying brig Amazon and her cargo to Martinique and then sailing to St. Kitts, arriving 6 December to meet frigate President there and receive orders. Putting to sea the next day, New York cruised the waters near Guadaloupe on patrol protecting U.S. merchant ships until forced to return to St. Kitts 31 December by a bad outbreak of fever among her crew. The frigate remained in the West Indies port, putting the forty sickest men ashore and recruiting others to replace them until sailing in mid-January 1801 to resume station on watchful patrol against those French ships, both naval vessels and privateers, which had been attacking Yankee merchant ships trading with the British West Indies.
With the ratification of the Pinckney Treaty with France 3 February, she was ordered to return home 23 March and arrived at New York in late April, remaining there until sailing to Washington in mid-May. New York was placed in ordinary at Washington Navy Yard as part of the reserve naval force provided for in the Peace Establishment Act of 1801. The frigate’s day to day patrolling performed an invaluable service to the nation, not only protecting American commerce, but also helping to establish the United States Navy as a force to be reckoned with. As part of the infant Navy, New York had, as President John Adams told Congress of the Navy’s actions, “raised us in our own esteem; and effected to the extent of our expectations, the objects for which it was created.”
The frigate recommissioned 14 August 1802, Captain James Barron in command, to meet another crisis facing the young United States. The small Moorish kingdoms on the Barbary Coast of North Africa were attacking American ships s, killing and imprisoning crewmen and stealing cargo, while demanding high monetary tribute as their price for ending these piratical acts. In response to this challenge, the U.S. sent a naval squadron to the Mediterranean in May 1801 to protect the nation’s interests, and on 14 November 1802, New York sailed from Washington Navy Yard to reinforce that squadron. Arriving Gibraltar 6 April 1803, she met the squadron there and became its flagship when Commodore Richard Morris, her first captain, broke his broad pennant from the frigate’s yardarm.
The squadron sailed 11 April for Tripoli to confront the Bashaw with a strong show of American force. En route 25 April, a powder explosion on board New York killed four men and damaged the ship, forcing the squadron to put into Malta 1 to 19 May while she effected repairs. Arriving off Tripoli on the 22nd, the squadron remained there attempting negotiations with the Bashaw. Following two brief engagements, 22 and 27 May in which the American ships’ overwhelming fire drove off attacking Tripolitan gunboats, the talks seemed to bear fruit. On 9 June, a tentative treaty was agreed to on the condition that the U.S. ships would immediately leave the harbor. Commodore Morris, following these terms, sailed in New York the next day, leaving the rest of the squadron on guard off the coast to follow later, little realizing that the treacherous Bashaw would resume his piratical activities as soon as the American presence was gone.
Sailing to Malta 14 June, New York received the 17-gun salute of Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson and the British Fleet at Valetta. The frigate remained there replenishing and allowing her crew to see the sights of the island until sailing for Gibraltar 8 July by way of Naples and Malaga and arriving 14 September. There she met Commodore Edward Preble and his squadron, sent to relieve Commodore Morris. On the day of her arrival, Captain John Rodgers came aboard to relieve Commodore Morris of command of New York and following one month in port, the warship sailed for home. Stopping at Tunis for supplies 4 November, she returned to Washington Navy Yard 9 December 1803 and was immediately placed in ordinary.
There New York remained for the next eleven years. The frigate was burned by the British in the capture of Washington, D.C. 24 August 1814.
(SL: t. 2,663; l. 197’1”; b. 53’; dr. 22’)
New York, a 74-gun ship of the line, was authorized 29 April 1816 and laid down in March 1820 at Norfolk Navy Yard, Norfolk, Va. She was never launched and was burnt on the stocks at Norfolk 21 April 1861 by Union forces to prevent her capture by Confederate troops.