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Alden, James (31 March 1810–06 February 1877), naval officer, was born in Portland, Maine (then part of Massachusetts), the son of James Alden, a ship owner, and Elizabeth Tate. Nothing is known of his early life or education, and no information is available about his marriage or children, if any....

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Allen, William Henry (21 October 1784–18 August 1813), U.S. naval officer and hero of the War of 1812, was born in Providence, Rhode Island, the son of militia general William Allen, a veteran of the Revolution, and Sarah Jones, sister of William Jones, future governor of Rhode Island. William Henry’s parents were prosperous members of Providence society and intended for him to follow a civilian career. His early education provided him with a good grounding in penmanship and mathematics (the latter proved useful in his naval career) and also with considerable skill as an artist. He made very competent sketches in his letters and the blank pages of his journals and did pen and ink portraits of his family. His only surviving likeness, a profile portrait, is probably based on a sketch done by Allen himself....

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Ammen, Daniel (16 May 1819–11 July 1898), naval officer, author, and inventor, was born in Brown County, Ohio, the son of David Ammen and Sally Houtz, farmers. While still a boy, Ammen exerted an unanticipated influence on later national affairs when he pulled his friend and schoolmate ...

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Andrews, Philip (31 March 1866–18 December 1935), naval officer, was born in New York City, the son of Phoebe D. Andrews, a Jersey City schoolteacher (father’s name unknown). Andrews completed his U.S. Naval Academy course in 1886 and entered the navy in the early stage of conversion from wood and sail to steel and steam-powered warships. About this same time he married Clara Fuller; they had one child. During the 1890s Andrews served on a number of these new steel men-of-war, including the armored cruiser ...

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Bailey, Theodorus (12 April 1805–10 February 1877), U.S. Navy rear admiral, was born at Chateaugay near Plattsburg, New York, the son of William Bailey, a judge, and Phoebe Platt. He was the nephew and namesake of Theodorus Bailey (1758–1828), who was a congressman, U.S. senator, and postmaster of New York City. Raised in New York State on the western shore of Lake Champlain, the scion of a prominent family, Bailey attended Plattsburg Academy and joined the U.S. Navy only four years after Commodore ...

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Bainbridge, William (07 May 1774–27 June 1833), naval officer, was born in Princeton, New Jersey, the son of Absalom Bainbridge, a physician, and Mary Taylor. His parents and grandparents sided with the king’s forces in the revolutionary war, and Dr. Bainbridge served as surgeon to a Loyalist regiment. This resulted in the confiscation of the family property and probably affected William Bainbridge’s view of himself: he was both conservative in politics and touchy—suspicious that, in the eyes of others, his family background cast a shadow on his own loyalty....

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Barney, Joshua (06 July 1759–01 December 1818), seaman and naval officer, was born in Baltimore, Maryland, the son of William Barney and Frances Holland, farmers. Barney left school at age ten and was sent by his father to Alexandria, Virginia, to be put in the care of a local merchant. After spending nearly one year in Virginia Barney returned to Baltimore, where he signed on as a crew member aboard a local pilot boat....

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Barron, James (1769–21 April 1851), naval officer, was born in Virginia, the younger of two naval sons of James Barron, a merchant captain and officer of the Virginia navy in the Revolution, and Jane Cowper. The older son, Samuel Barron, also commanded in the U.S. Navy and was senior to James. James Barron began his sea service before the age of twelve on board his father’s ship in the Virginia service. He was commissioned a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy in 1798, presumably having sailed in merchant vessels in the intervening years, since he would be known throughout the service for his masterful seamanship. In 1790 he married Elisabeth Mosely Armistead, another Virginian; the Barrons’ first child, Jane, was born in 1791....

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Barry, John (1745?–13 September 1803), shipmaster and naval officer, was born in County Wexford, Ireland. His parentage is uncertain: his father was a farmer, and his mother’s maiden name was Kelly. Apprenticed on a Wexford merchantman as a cabin boy in 1755, he diligently applied himself to the naval profession. Philadelphia became his permanent home in 1760; he became a devoted patriot and successful shipmaster. On 31 October 1767 he married Mary Cleary. The union produced no children before she died in 1774. In November 1775 he relinquished command of the 200-ton ...

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Bennett, Floyd (25 October 1890–25 April 1928), aviator, was born at Truesdale Hill, Town of Caldwell (now Lake George), New York, the son of Wallace Bennett and Henrietta (maiden name unknown). At age nine he went to live with his uncle and aunt in Warrensburg, New York, where he attended public schools and did farm work. He left school at age seventeen and worked for a year in a lumber camp near Lake George to earn money to attend an automobile school in Schenectady. He then worked at the People’s Garage in Ticonderoga. He eventually became co-owner but later sold his share and moved to Hague, New York, where he was employed as a mechanic in R. F. Bolton’s garage. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy on 15 December 1917, serving at naval air stations at Bay Shore, New York; Hampton Roads, Virginia; and Pensacola, Florida. In 1918 he married Cora Lillian Orkins of Ticonderoga; they had no children....