• Abraham Colby diary, 1812-1813

      Cameron, Chantal (2022-03-29)
      A diary belonging to Abraham Colby, the master of the sloop Priscilla, which made regular runs from Newburyport, MA to Augusta, ME to collect lumber. In his diary he makes note of the developing war between the United States and Britain. On August 16, 1812 he mentions the arrival of a privateer, and on the 20th “a fast appointed by the president”. On September 10 “2 prizes arrived to N[ewbury]port”. With shipping disrupted, he sold his sloop on October 7, writing that same day “the ship Commerce a prize to the Decatur arrived at the bar”. On October 11 he receives “news of Fort Detroit retaken”. The entry for November 19 states that “the Salisbury privateer launched. I cut my eye by breaking the bottle.” On December 7 he celebrated the first captured British warship ever brought into an American harbor, writing “news of the U.S. frigate taking a English frigate called the Macedonia rated 38 mounting 49 guns”.