James Madison Papers

Board of Admiralty to Seth Harding, 2 May 1780

Board of Admiralty to Seth Harding

FC (NA: PCC, Marine Committee Letter Book, fol. 281).

May 2d. 1780


The Board are favoured with your letter of the 28th Ultimo informing them of the arrival of the frigate Confederacy.

As the Masts & Spars wanted for the Confederacy can be furnished here, you are directed immediately to proceed up with the Ship to this place where the most speedy measures will be taken for fitting her out again with all expedition.1

I am Sir Your very Hble servant    By Order

John Brown secy

1Shortage of money delayed the refitting and resupplying of the “Confederacy” until the winter of 1781. Then, under the command of Captain Seth Harding (1734–1814), it cruised in West Indian waters in concert with the U.S. frigates “Deane” and “Saratoga.” On 15 April 1781, while returning to the United States, the “Confederacy” was captured by two British men-of-war. After he was freed, Harding served on the “Alliance” until the end of the war (Gardner W. Allen, A Naval History of the American Revolution, II, 556; James L. Howard, Seth Harding, Mariner: A Naval Picture of the Revolution [New Haven, 1930], pp. 157–61).

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