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Mohawk I (Frigate)

(Fr: t. 1,350; lbp. 155'; b. 37'6"; dph. 15'6"; cpl. 350; a. 26 24‑pdrs., 16 32‑pdrs.)

A North American Indian tribe, part of the Iroquois Confederation, which originally dwelt in the Mohawk River Valley, N.Y., but was forced to flee to Canada for having sided with the Loyalists during the American Revolution.


The first Mohawk, a 42‑gun frigate, was laid down 8 May 1814 by Henry Eckford, builder, Sacketts Harbor, N.Y.; launched 11 June 1814; and acquired by the Navy and placed in service shortly thereafter, Capt. Jacob Jones in command.

One of the large warships built under the direction of Commodore Isaac Chauncey for service against the British on Lake Ontario, Mohawk departed Sacketts Harbor 31 July 1814 in Chauncey's squadron to challenge the British squadron of Capt. Sir James Yeo, RN, for control of the lake during the crucial Niagara campaign of 1814. Sailing up to the head of the lake seeking the English squadron, the American ships found the enemy had retired to Kingston, Ontario. In mid‑July, Mohawk, in company with full‑rigged ships Superior, Pike, and Madison began a blockade of the Canadian port, remaining there for 45 days, providing valuable support for the army of Maj. Gen. Jacob Brown in his campaign against the English posts along the Niagara frontier. On 21 September the frigate helped transport General Izard and 3,000 men from Sacketts Harbor to the Genesee River and then resumed her blockade of Kingston until the end of the month. As winter began to close in, the American squadron retired to Sacketts Harbor. The War of 1812 ended 28 December 1814, long before the ice on the Great Lakes melted to allow further operations. Mohawk was then laid up in ordinary at Sacketts Harbor. She was reported unfit for repairs in 1821 and soon after sold and broken up.

Published: Tue Aug 11 08:45:17 EDT 2015