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Chesapeake Flotilla: America’s Defense of the Bay

Author(s): Shanna L Daniel ; George Schwarz

Year: 2017

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US Navy’s Chesapeake Flotilla was a collection of 16 gunboats assembled under the direction of Joshua Barney to defend the Chesapeake Bay during the War of 1812.  The Flotilla engaged the Royal Navy in several skirmishes along the Patuxent River but was forced to scuttle the vessels in August of 1814.  In 2010-11 Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) and state of Maryland partners excavated sections of the flotilla’s probable flagship, USS Scorpion. Diagnostic artifacts, such as surgical scissors and glass pharmaceutical bottles, were recovered and conserved to further aid in the flagship’s identification.  From 2014-16, NHHC conducted remote sensing surveys in an effort to locate the remaining flotilla vessels, which, along with the study of the suspected Scorpion wreck and artifacts, is expected to provide a better understanding of the flotilla’s role in defending the Chesapeake Bay, as well as a glimpse into naval life aboard during this campaign.          

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Cite this Record

Chesapeake Flotilla: America’s Defense of the Bay. Shanna L Daniel, George Schwarz. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Fort Worth, TX. 2017 ( tDAR id: 435567)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 375

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America