Commodore Abraham Whipple of the Continental Navy
Privateer, Patriot, Pioneer
Publication Year: 2010
Abraham Whipple (1733-1819) commanded insurgents who destroyed HMS Gaspee in Narragansett Bay and helped direct the successful invasion of the Bahamas. This little-known, yet intrepid and frequently successful Continental Navy officer contributed significantly to the War for Independence. An esteemed officer of the fleet, he spent his last years in frontier Ohio where he was respected and appealed to younger generations as a "representative of the Revolution."
Sheldon Cohen's biography of Whipple presents a look inside the life of a Continental officer. He illustrates at a personal level the complexities of naval warfare, including Whipple's reliance on personal finances and family connections to outfit his ships and pay his crew. Cohen also reveals the commander’s treatment as a British prisoner of war, and his eventual migration west, shedding light on experiences shared by many Revolutionary War veterans.
Published by: University Press of Florida
Title Page, Copyright
List of Illustrations
Download PDF (42.8 KB)
Download PDF (48.0 KB)
Water is unquestionably the most important natural feature on earth. By volume the worldâs oceans compose 99 percent of the planetâs living space; in fact, the surface of the Pacific Ocean alone is larger than that of the total land bodies. Water is as vital to life as air. Indeed, to test whether the moon...
Download PDF (49.5 KB)
On May 27, 1819, death claimed the life of an aged man at his farmstead near the growing community of Marietta, Ohio. His name was Abraham Whipple, and he was then in his eighty-sixth yearâa rather remarkable life span for that particular time in America. His wife of almost fifty-seven...
Download PDF (51.1 KB)
This study of the long life and far-ranging career of Abraham Whipple took over three years to complete and involved research at many locales within the United States and abroad. My visits there were pleasant and rewarding, and I remain especially grateful to the individuals working at several...
1. Rhode Island Beginnings
Download PDF (174.4 KB)
The Whipple family in New England could trace its origins back to England. The name Whipple, which some family genealogists claim meant âclearâ or âfreshâ stream, apparently had origins in Norman times, although the surname then appeared with several variant spellings, including Wipple...
2. The Passage from Peacetime to Rebellion, 1763â1775
Download PDF (312.5 KB)
Sarah and Abraham Whipple, along with their two daughters, settled into their Providence community after the French and Indian War had ended. A manuscript map of 1770 details residences for part of the growing town. It shows the Whipple home situated on a lot alongside the town âhighwayâ running south...
3. Whippleâs War, at Home and Abroad, 1775â1778
Download PDF (262.3 KB)
The two-ship Rhode Island Navy that Abraham Whipple commanded surely must have appeared an unlikely fighting force to their adversaries as they began their mid-August 1775 cruise. Both Katy and Washington seemed to be no match for the larger and more heavily armed British warships then...
4. Warâs Fortunes and Misfortunes, 1779â1783
Download PDF (229.6 KB)
Captain Abraham Whipple found himself spending many of the bleak, sunlight- limited days of January 1779 at his Providence home with Sarah and their two maturing daughters. In some ways, this may have seemed a repeat of his previous yearâs stay: then, as now, the British occupied Newport, and...
5. Postwar Discontentments, 1783â1789
Download PDF (182.3 KB)
The years of nonbelligerency following the Paris Peace Treaty of September 1783 were replete with disappointments for Abraham Whipple. The former commodore had already endured delays and frustrations with Rhode Islandâs legislature. Despite his devoted wartime service and his familyâs lengthy ties...
6. Final Years in Ohio, 1789â1819
Download PDF (332.1 KB)
When Sarah and Abraham Whipple reached Marietta in November 1789, they may well have regarded this settlement in the Ohio Territory as the locale where they might thereafter achieve security, prosperity, and respect. And simultaneously, the existing states were endeavoring to provide similar...
Download PDF (171.8 KB)
Download PDF (79.8 KB)
Download PDF (73.4 KB)
Page Count: 256
Illustrations: 16 b&w illustrations
Publication Year: 2010
Series Title: New Perspectives on Maritime History and Nautical Archaeology
Series Editor Byline: James C. Bradford and Gene Allen Smith