Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Columbus I (Ship)

1775–1778

Christopher Columbus (1451-1506), the discoverer of America.

I

(Ship: displacement 200; complement 220; armament 18 9-pounders, 10 6-pounders)

The first Columbus, a 24-gun armed ship, was built at Philadelphia, Pa., in 1774 as Sally; purchased for the Continental Navy in November 1775; Capt. A. Whipple in command.

Between 17 February and 8 April 1776, in company with the other ships of Commodore E. Hopkins' squadron, Columbus took part in the expedition to New Providence, Bahamas, where the first Navy-Marine amphibious operation seized essential military supplies. On the return passage, the squadron captured British schooner Hawk on 4 April, and brig Bolton the following day. On 6 April, the squadron engaged British 20-gun ship Glasgow. After three hours the action was broken off and Glasgow escaped, leaving her tender to be captured. Later in 1776 Columbus cruised off the New England coast taking five prizes. Chased ashore on Point Judith, R.I., 27 March 1778 by a British squadron, Columbus was stripped of her sails, most of her rigging, and other usable material by her crew before being abandoned. The British then burned the ship.

Updated and expanded by Mark L. Evans

8 September 2015

Published: Tue Sep 08 11:14:41 EDT 2015