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USS Sylph (I)


Schooner:
  • Laid down, 26 July 1813, at Sackett's Harbor, N.Y., by Henry Eckford
  • Launched, 18 August 1813.
  • On 21 August USS Sylph joined COMO. Chauncey's fleet on Lake Ontario
  • On 11 September she participated in the three and one-half running battle off the mouth of the Genessee River, damaging a British brig before escaping into Amherst Bay with the rest of the British squadron
  • On 28 September Sylph was present when the two fleets met in York Bay, but since she was towing a slower schooner throughout the engagement she was unable to get close to the fleeing British ships
  • On 2 October, the British fleet was able to evade the Americans and escaped from York Bay
  • On 5 October Chauncy located seven British ships, capturing five, with one burned by her crew to prevent capture and one managing to escape
  • Thereafter, the British fleet remained in Kingston, Ontario, where they were blockaded until the end of November when cold weather closed navigation on the lake for the winter
  • During the off-season Sylph was rerigged as a brig, and her armament was changed to two 9-pounders and six 24-pounder carronades
  • On 5 May 1814, the British squadron captured the American base at Oswego; and then proceeded to Sackett's Harbor which they blockaded until 6 June
  • Sylph got underway with the rest of the American fleet, 31 July and sailed up to the head of the lake
  • Chauncy intercepted British brig Magnet there and ordered Sylph to sail into shoal water to destroy the brig, but before she could reach the British vessel her crew ran her aground and burned her
  • Chauncy then took his squadron including Sylph to Kingston where he blockaded the British fleet until winter ended navigation
  • The signing of The Treaty of Ghent ended further naval operations on the Great Lakes
  • Sylph was laid up at Sackett's Harbor until 1823 when she was reported sunk and decayed
  • Final Disposition, her hulk was sold before 1825
    Specifications:
    Displacement 300 t.
    Length unknown
    Beam unknown
    Draft unknown
    Depth of Hold unknown
    Speed unknown
    Complement 70
    Armament
    four long 32 pdrs.
    twelve long 6 pdrs.
    Propulsion sail

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    USS Sylph (I)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
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    Last Updated 18 August 2017