At Sea Under Impressment

Accounts of Involuntary Service Aboard Navy and Pirate Vessels, 1700–1820


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SKU: 9780786443741 Categories: ,

About the Book

As Britain became a dominant sailing empire during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, her ships were manned in part by impressed men, forced to serve against their will. Naval officers oversaw a press gang that abducted both British and American citizens, particularly during times of war, and held them captive until they were sent to sea as unwilling sailors. This book provides personal accounts of 13 men, most of whom were impressed into the British Navy, but some onto pirate ships. A chapter on Dartmoor Prison is included, an institution which held thousands of impressed Americans during the War of 1812.

About the Author(s)

Jean Choate teaches history at the College of Coastal Georgia. She has written two previous books, one on farmers during the Depression, the other on Eliza Johnson, the wife of President Andrew Johnson. She lives in Brunswick, Georgia.

Bibliographic Details

Jean Choate
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 218
Bibliographic Info: 10 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2010
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4374-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

Introduction      3


1. John Newton      17

2. Joshua Davis      44

3. Joshua Penny      50

4. Pirates!      80

5. John Stradley      92

6. Jacob Nagle      97

7. Joseph Bates      104

8. Dartmoor Prison      126

9. Stephen Cabot      139

10. James R. Durand      148

11. Thomas Urquhart      161


12. William Molyneux Afterward      169

13. John Newton Afterward      171

14. Joseph Bates Afterward      174

15. Jacob Nagle Afterward      181

16. Joshua Penny Afterward      184

Conclusion      198

Chapter Notes      203

Bibliography      209

Index      211

Book Reviews & Awards

“valuable”—International Journal of Maritime History.