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William Bainbridge

Autograph Letter Signed - 1828

Autograph letter signed dated June 2, 1828, from Commodore William Bainbridge, then Naval Commissioner and Commandant of the Philadelphia Navy Yard. He writes to John Orde Creighton, commanding officer of the Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Naval Yard, regarding costs of building the 20-gun sloop-of-war USS Concord, which had a complement of 190 officers and seamen, and saw service protecting American merchant ships and other interests in several places around the world. Bainbridge also mentions another great ship, the USS Vandalia, an 18-gun sloop-of-war that served during the Second Seminole War and the American Civil War. Both ships launched in 1828, within months of this letter.

Measures 8" x 9.5" with integral leaf bearing sender's and recipient's addresses. With vintage 6" x 10" engraving bearing facsimile signature. Transcribed in full:

Philadelphia, 2nd June 1828

My dear Orde,

You will oblige me by sending me an abstract of the cost of the sloop "Concord" building at the yard under your command, with the number of day's worked in each branch of mechanics, in hiring the laborers. Will give you a similiar return of the "Vandalia" when she has progressed as far as the Concord has.

Give my love to your wife and children, and ever believe me very sincerely.

Your affectionate friend,
Wm. Bainbridge

To John Orde Creighton Esq
Commanding US Navy Yard at Portsmouth, NH

Sloop-of-War USS Vandalia
Sloop-of-War USS Vandalia

William Bainbridge (1774-1833) was one of the founding fathers of the United States Navy, and a hero of the War of 1812. He commanded several famous naval ships, including the USS Constitution ("Old Ironsides"), and saw service in the Barbary Wars and the War of 1812. Bainbridge was also in command of the USS Philadelphia when it grounded off the shores of Tripoli in North Africa, resulting in his capture and imprisonment for many months. In the latter part of his career he became the U.S. Naval Commissioner.