- Category: Lit Bits
- Created: Tuesday, 22 March 2011 09:33
- Written by Charles Doane
Editor's note: Recent developments in Libya and the ongoing piracy crisis in Somalia have sparked a revival of historical interest in the early 19th century U.S. war against the Barbary pirates. What follows is a recently discovered eyewitness account of certain celebrated events that took place in 1803-04.
AYE, Scurvy's me name. Lieutenant Scurvy Bastard, and proud to be serving in the United States Navy, thank'ee very much. I joined into the Navy back in 1798, during the war with France, when there weren't much navy to speak of. Me dad were anxious then for me to join a merchant vessel, as he had done, but I told him I saw no high adventure in it. With all the fat American merchantmen roaming the sea, I reckoned there was bound to be a real rat's navy to protect them all from the ravages of privateers and such.
The Frenchies proved me right, of course, and I saw a good deal of action aboard USS Constitution, commissioned new under Capt. Sam Nicholson. We cruised the West Indies mostly and I rose right fast and was commissioned lieutenant within two years. I put together a tough, hard-fighting crew that was among the best of man or rodent, and we had ourselves one hell of a time.Write comment (0 Comments)