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American sailing warships with no plans or records

John Adams Alliance General Greene Enterprise Congress

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#41
CharlieZardoz

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Both ships were indeed cut down.  I don't think that figure is of the John Adams since it's length between perp's is 106' and John Adams was 139'.  The book is ordered and shipping and when I get the Coker book I'll scan and post what's shown in the book :)

 

I do wish those figure's could be identified since those ships could very well be some forgotten bit of history.


Edited by CharlieZardoz, 14 June 2015 - 05:47 AM.


#42
CaptArmstrong

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Can't wait! Oh the 24 gun ship certainly is not the Adams or John Adams, but if the hull form is a somewhat close match when scaled, we might have a better idea about the designer, principles that went into both, and thus identity. I think Chapelle hypothesized that they were an improved version of the quasi war corvettes like Patapsco, Maryland, and Connecticut. At any rate, very excited about the John Adams!
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#43
uss frolick

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No decorative detail, alas, although her original bust head was saved and placed on the new ship in 1829. Headrails in 2. only. The closest ship to her in Chapelle is the Boston.

 

The John Adams was cut down in 1808 to a flush-decked corvette carrying 22 42-pounder carronades and two long twelves . She was very successful. In 1811, however, Captain William Bainbridge ordered her to be repaired with an armed quarterdeck once again, but not with a raised forecastle, and she thus became the infamous "jack-*** frigate". She was so unsuccessful that she sat most of the War-of-1812 out in New York. The quarterdeck was removed by 1814, and she sailed on one diplomatic mission to Europe.

 

The 12-pounder Adams was cut in half circa 1809, lengthened 15 feet, and put back into service as an 18-pounder frigate. In this configuration, she was crank and unstable. All of her spar deck carronades were landed, and her upper bulwark lightened, but she never lost her upper deck. She was a spar decked corvette, similar to the Jamestown of 1844, but with one brass pivot on her forecastle. She was never cut down. Her 18-pounders were mostly only short versions called "columbiads". She was fast and beautiful, but the lengthening process moved her maximum breadth too far aft. This caused "chattering" of the water eddies at her rudder, which made her hard to steer and repeatedly wore out her pintles and gudgeons. Had she not been destroyed in 1814, she would not have been rebuilt.


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#44
CharlieZardoz

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I wish there was some visual evidence for the Adams as well as the elusive General Greene.  Enough to at least extrapolate a conceptual model of what they may have looked like (which I am sure is possible with enough research).  I do appreciate the wealth of info you've added to this topic frolick thanks!

 

Charlie


Edited by CharlieZardoz, 15 June 2015 - 02:56 AM.

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#45
Talos

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I'd love to get my hands on details for those (up to draughts) to redraw them and modify them to illustrate those variations. They sound fascinating.

 

Currently working on redrawing HMS Macedonian.

 

WoZ6XRAl.jpg


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#46
uss frolick

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There was allegedly a full set of plans of the lengthened USS Adams. The late Dr. William M. P. Dunne, of SUNY, told me that Howard Chapelle had them at home in preparation for his sailing Navy Book in the 1940s, but he got in a final knock-down fight with his soon-to-be ex-wife, and she reportedly burned them, along with several others (USS Portsmouth too) that belonged to the Fox Papers of the Peabody Museum in Salem Mass. How true this is, I don't know, but Dr. Dunne was in a position to know.


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#47
CharlieZardoz

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Oh dear we boat loving nerds do need to be mindful of our significant others when plowing through historical documents don't we.  :) Anywhoo I scanned the pics from the Coker book and this is what I found. There's a John Adams body plan, painting and sail plan (though a bit small) also diagrams for the Delaware, Providence and 1776 Boston with clear figurehead details.  Based on these pictures the model above could very well be the 1776 Boston taken from admiralty lines and based on these diagrams it looks like all these ships had draughts taken by RN during enlistment.  Also posted the admiralty model of the L'indien aka South Carolina showing some fine details.  So overall that's quite a lot of continental frigates knocked off my list as well as a few new ones ;)

Attached Thumbnails

  • bp 001.jpg
  • dw 001.jpg
  • jh 001.jpg
  • jh2 001.jpg
  • john adams 1 001.jpg
  • s carolina 001.jpg

Edited by CharlieZardoz, 15 June 2015 - 03:59 PM.

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#48
uss frolick

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Thanks for posting those Charley!

 

The lines were probably taken off just before she was broken up in 1828. The builders in Charleston altered the plan that Fox had provided for them. They were worried that she might not make it over the bar, so in addition to lengthening her five feet, they gave her broader floors to decrease her draught - most evident in the drawing - but this made her roll more, not a good quality for a gun platform.


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#49
CharlieZardoz

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Hard to imagine only one set of plans of the Adams and Portsmouth survived but I suppose we should be thankful how much history survives at all.  I always make sure to be attentive to my partner, why just yesterday we were having a serious discussion with our friend about a falling out she had and yes I was sanding the hull of the Sultana at the same time but I swear I was fully attentive and offered advice ;D


Edited by CharlieZardoz, 15 June 2015 - 04:52 PM.

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#50
uss frolick

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"If a man speaks alone in the forest, and his wife is not around to hear him, is he still wrong?"


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#51
CaptArmstrong

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There was allegedly a full set of plans of the lengthened USS Adams. The late Dr. William M. P. Dunne, of SUNY, told me that Howard Chapelle had them at home in preparation for his sailing Navy Book in the 1940s, but he got in a final knock-down fight with his soon-to-be ex-wife, and she reportedly burned them, along with several others (USS Portsmouth too) that belonged to the Fox Papers of the Peabody Museum in Salem Mass. How true this is, I don't know, but Dr. Dunne was in a position to know.

Wow. What a tragedy-both personal and for history. Would've loved to get my hands on plans of the Adams after lengthening, the prospect of a big fast 18pdr armed corvette is inspiring to be sure. I did actually go to the extent of modifying the plans of the 24 gun ship mentioned earlier to be representative of a cut down and lengthened Adams.-figuring that she was known for being too fine lined for a 28, that a 24 gun american sixth rate of the same year might be a good approximation. I scaled the breath and then added the length in her midsection necessary to fit the lengthened dimension (though not 15 feet extra) the depth is of course slightly off. deck and plank sheer were modified to match, new headrails added, and the gunports and chains were rearranged accordingly to the different scale and dimensions. While only the loosest of representations, the concept might be a somewhat decent approximation in the complete absence of plans, if pursued further and properly. 

 

The John Adams find is great, and the Continental frigates-Thanks for posting! I wonder what the sources are, though they look quite believable. However, the john adams sailplan seems to be a copy of chapelle's for the Philadelphia, but with fewer gunports. I wasn't aware that Bainbridge had made her a jackass frigate after she was cut down, 22 x 42pdrs and good sailing qualities should've been plenty. For seeing as much fame, success, and recognition as he did, that captain made a lot of mistakes


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#52
CharlieZardoz

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They look too detailed to be mere approximations so I am assuming he found them in the royal archives under whatever they were renamed to when entering royal service.  Though they could be approximations such as the Queen of France which clearly says so. 



#53
CharlieZardoz

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Also looking into some of the archives on this site I decided I should also add a shot of the water color depictions of the sterns from John Lenthall's archives.  In it you can see John Adams, Constitution and Congress among others.  I figure I'll just make this post a big info dump since it feels like so much is out there just not in an organized place.  Happy to find the stern of the Congress... even if it's not the prettiest thing lol  :)

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#54
uss frolick

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There is a contemporary watercolor painting entitled "American Corvette" by William John Huggins. She is a flush decked corvette with a long rail-less poop and topgallant forcastle deck with 12 guns a side, exclusive of the broadside ports. I am 99% sure that it is of the John Adams, and I date the painting to her diplomatic mission of 1809-10. You can see it on the NMM site. If anyone can figure out how to repost it here, it would be informative ...


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#55
uss frolick

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Please note above the watercolor of the stern of the Constitution with six windows! The artist was W. A. K. Martin, and although it is hard to see here, it is dated 1837. (See M.V. Brewington "Shipcarvers of North America")


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#56
trippwj

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There is a contemporary watercolor painting entitled "American Corvette" by William John Huggins. She is a flush decked corvette with a long rail-less poop and topgallant forcastle deck with 12 guns a side, exclusive of the broadside ports. I am 99% sure that it is of the John Adams, and I date the painting to her diplomatic mission of 1809-10. You can see it on the NMM site. If anyone can figure out how to repost it here, it would be informative ...

 

Here is the link to the painting: http://prints.rmg.co...erican-corvette


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#57
michaelpsutton2

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American Corvette.png

 

Just screen shot. If this is considered illegal or unethical please remove the post or ask me to do it


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Drown you may, but go you must and your reward shall be a man's pay or a hero's grave


#58
CharlieZardoz

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It should be ok thanks!


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#59
CaptArmstrong

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I recognize the corvette painting from this book http://www.amazon.co...iews/1840673605where I believe it is identified as the John Adams. She was a fine looking ship in this state!
The painting of the sterns is remarkable, particularly for that of the constitution! It is close enough to the 1812 hull model for me to think they are the same , http://www.ibiblio.o...-h/i-hull-x.htmand based especially off the quarter galleries might be the original, particularly given the quite close resembelence of president's stern in this contemporary print by baugean

http://imageweb-cdn....size/pu7389.jpg
http://www.maphouse....hotos/m2918.jpg

He also did one of United States vs Macedonian which shows it better, I'll post a link if I can find it
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#60
CharlieZardoz

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It'd be nice to fine some more info regarding United States stern details.  The one painting I've seen is hard to make out and these watercolors above give me hope that there is something more out there. :) 

 

(oh and that Zimmerman guy never answered me back pooh!)


Edited by CharlieZardoz, 18 June 2015 - 05:33 PM.

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