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|Laid down:||date unknown|
|Completed:||in Connecticut in 1803|
|Acquired:||by the Navy at Boston, Massachusetts, on 25 April 1805|
|Commissioned:||25 April 1805 at Boston|
|Decommissioned:||3 August 1806|
|In service:||July 1807|
|Out of service:||December 1807|
|Reclassified:||converted from a sloop to a bomb ketch by the Boston Navy Yard|
|Fate:||broken up at the Norfolk Navy Yard in 1820|
USS Spitfire (1803) was a bomb ketch converted from a sloop that served the U.S. Navy during the early years of the republic. She carried ammunition for the U.S. Navy warships in the Mediterranean in their battles with the Barbary pirates, and was later involved in the Little Belt affair prior to the War of 1812.
The second ship to be so named by the Navy, Spitfire—a merchant sloop built in Connecticut in 1803—was purchased by the Navy at Boston, Massachusetts, on 25 April 1805; was commissioned the same day; and converted to a bomb ketch by the Boston Navy Yard.
Commanded by Midshipman Daniel McNeill, Jr., Spitfire sailed for the Mediterranean on 23 June 1805 and reached Gibraltar on 1 August. The bomb ketch operated in the Mediterranean supporting American operations against the Barbary powers until sailing for home on 3 June 1806.
She arrived at Charleston, South Carolina, on 19 July and was placed in ordinary at Norfolk, Virginia, on 3 August 1806.
The ship reactivated in July 1807 under command of Midshipman F. Cornelius de Kroff but remained at Norfolk until laid up again in December.
On 1 May 1811, Spitfire was stopped by the fifth-rate HMS Guerriere off New Jersey's Sandy Hook. Guerriere impressed the apprentice sailing master of Spitfire, John Diggio, a citizen of Maine. This incident led to a confrontation fifteen days later between the frigates USS President and the HMS Little Belt (mistaken for the Guerriere), as President attempted to recover Diggio. The ensuing Little Belt affair provoked a diplomatic furor between the United States and Great Britain, and contributed to the tense atmosphere between the two powers prior to the War of 1812.
Spitfire was broken up at the Norfolk Navy Yard in 1820.
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USS Adams was a 28-gun (rated) sailing frigate of the United States Navy. She was laid down in 1797 at New York City by John Jackson and William Sheffield and launched on 8 June 1799. Captain Richard Valentine Morris took command of the ship.
Isaac Hull was a Commodore in the United States Navy. He commanded several famous U.S. naval warships including USS Constitution and saw service in the undeclared naval Quasi War with the revolutionary French Republic (France) 1796–1800; the Barbary Wars, with the Barbary states in North Africa; and the War of 1812 (1812–1815), for the second time with Great Britain. In the latter part of his career he was Commandant of the Washington Navy Yard in the national capital of Washington, D.C., and later the Commodore of the Mediterranean Squadron. For the infant U.S. Navy, the battle of USS Constitution vs HMS Guerriere on August 19, 1812, at the beginning of the war, was the most important single ship action of the War of 1812 and one that made Isaac Hull a national hero.
Guerrière was a 38-gun frigate of the French Navy, designed by Forfait. The British captured her and recommissioned her as HMS Guerriere. She is most famous for her fight against USS Constitution.
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John Rodgers was a senior naval officer in the United States Navy who served under six presidents for nearly four decades during its formative years in the 1790s through the late 1830s, committing the bulk of his adult life to his country. His service took him through many operations in the Quasi-War with France, both Barbary Wars in North Africa and the War of 1812 with Britain. As a senior officer in the young American navy he played a major role in the development of the standards, customs and traditions that emerged during this time. Rodgers was, among other things, noted for commanding the largest American squadron in his day to sail the Mediterranean Sea. After serving with distinction as a lieutenant he was soon promoted directly to the rank of captain. During his naval career he commanded a number of warships, including USS John Adams, the flagship of the fleet that defeated the Barbary states of North Africa. During the War of 1812 Rodgers fired the first shot of the war aboard his next flagship, USS President, and also played a leading role in the recapture of Washington D.C. after the capital was burned by the British, while also having to endure his own hometown and house burned and his family displaced. Later in his career he headed the Board of Navy Commissioners and served briefly as Secretary of the Navy. Following in his footsteps, Rodgers' son and several grandsons and great-grandsons also became commodores and admirals in the United States Navy.
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