Jun 27, 2024 - Sale 2675

Sale 2675 - Lot 14

Estimate: $ 1,000 - $ 1,500
(AMERICAN REVOLUTION--PRELUDE.) Issue of the Pennsylvania Chronicle, reporting on the destruction of HMS Liberty by Newport colonists. 8 pages, 12 x 9¾ inches, on 2 folding sheets; foxing, wear on top edge affecting some running titles, stitch holes. Philadelphia, 31 July 1769

Additional Details

In 1768, a mercantile vessel owned by the patriot John Hancock was confiscated by the British and converted to a naval vessel, the HMS Liberty. In July 1769, this vessel captured two suspected colonial smugglers, brought them into Newport, RI, and mistreated the crews. The Liberty's crew was lured off the boat under the guise of an investigation, and then colonists destroyed the hated vessel.

This Philadelphia newspaper reproduces the first report on the incident as published in the Newport Mercury the previous week: "This attempt of violence by the Liberty's people . . . so enraged a number of persons, that the ensuing evening . . . they cut her cables and let her drive ashore at the point, where they cut away her mast, scuttled her, and carried both her boats to the upper part of town and burnt them."