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Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress, 1815-1816: Finding Aid

Published in June 2013

Summary Information

  • Publisher: United States Naval Academy. Special Collections & Archives.
  • Publisher Address:
    589 McNair Road
    Annapolis, Maryland 21402-5029, USA
    Phone: 410-293-6917
    https://www.usna.edu/Library/sca/index.php
  • Call number: MS 216
  • Location: Special Collections & Archives Department - Manuscripts
  • Title: Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress
  • Dates: 1815-1816
  • Size: 1 volume
  • Creator: Congress (Frigate: 1794-1834)
  • Language(s) of material: English
  • Abstract: The Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress covers the years 1815 and 1816. The volume consists of thirty-nine articles of regulation, fire and quarter procedures, and descriptions of the roles and duties of the first, second and junior lieutenants, master, surgeon, purser, midshipmen, and marines. The volume also includes watch- and quarter-bills.

History of the U.S.S. Congress

The U.S.S. Congress, one of the original six frigates authorized by congress on March 27, 1794, was laid down at the Portsmouth Navy Yard, New Hampshire. Following a hiatus in construction, Congress was launched August 15, 1799, Captain J. Sever in command.

Initially assigned to the East Indies protecting American interests from French privateers, Congress was forced back to Hampton Roads following the loss of a mast. Following repairs, Congress served nearly two years, before being placed into ordinary in August 1801. Three years later, she was recommissioned for service in the Mediterranean Squadron, before being placed in ordinary a second time in 1811.

Just prior to the outbreak of hostilities with Great Britain, Congress was recommissioned under the command of Captain John Smith. Throughout 1812, she patrolled the North Atlantic, capturing nine prizes, before being reassigned to the Brazilian Coast in 1813, where she captured four more prizes.

Following the cessation of hostilities, Congress, now under the command of Captain Charles Morris, sailed for the Mediterranean. In November 1815, she returned home for service in the Gulf of Mexico suppressing piracy, until September 1817.

Over the next six years, Congress made several more cruises battling piracy and protecting American commerce on several stations, before finally being converted to a receiving ship in 1829. In 1834, Congress was deemed beyond repair and broken up at the Norfolk Navy Yard.

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Description of Contents

The Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress, comprising a single volume, covers the years 1815 and 1816. The volume consists of thirty-nine articles of regulation, quarter and fire alarm procedures, and descriptions of the roles and duties of the first, second and junior lieutenants, master, surgeon, purser, midshipmen, and marines. The volume also includes watch- and quarter-bills.

The regulations, possibly laid down by Captain Charles Morris upon assuming command in 1815, address matters of shipboard conduct, duty, and routine, such as the observation of strict silence among the crew, manner and infliction of punishment, proper uniform, and conduct of the watch. The regulations and officers' duties conclude with a wax seal. The watch- and quarter- bills, written in a different hand, probably date from Congress's duty in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean in 1816.

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Arrangement

The Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress comprises a single volume.

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Access and Use

Access

Access is unrestricted.

Copyright and Permission

The Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress is the physical property of Nimitz Library. Copyright belongs to the authors or creators of the works, or their legal representatives. For further information, consult the Head, Special Collections & Archives.

It is the responsibility of the researcher to secure written permission to publish, reprint, or reproduce material from Special Collections & Archives. The researcher assumes responsibility for infringement of copyright or literary or publication rights. Please contact the Head, Special Collections & Archives for permission to publish and for further information.

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Acquisition and Appraisal

Provenance and Acquisition

Purchased in February 1997.

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Related Materials

Related Archival Material

Additional contemporary materials pertaining to the frigate U.S.S. Congress in the Special Collections & Archives Department, Nimitz Library include; Journal of the U.S.S. Congress, 1816-1817, MS 22, Journal of the U.S.S. Congress, the Citizen, and the Canton, 1815-1820, MS 24, Remarks Made on Board the United States' Frigate Congress, 1817, MS 23, Watch-, Quarter-, and Station-Bill of the U.S.S. Congress, 1818, MS 73, Watch-, Quarter-, and Station-Bill of the U.S.S. Congress and the U.S.S. Constitution, 1819, MS 70, and Watch-, Quarter-, and Station-Bill of the U.S.S. John Adams and the U.S.S. Congress, 1818, MS 73.

Materials Cataloged Separately

No materials have been removed from this collection.

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Processing and Other Information

Preferred Citation

Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress, MS 216

Special Collections & Archives Department

Nimitz Library

United States Naval Academy

Selected Bibliography

The following sources were consulted during preparation of the historical sketch:

Navy Department. Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Naval History Division. Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1959-1981.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by David D'Onofrio in March 2009. Finding aid written by David D'Onofrio in March 2009.

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Subject Headings

These materials have been indexed in the Naval Academy Library online catalog using the following terms. Those seeking related materials should search under these terms.

Name and Subject Terms

  • Congress (Frigate: 1794-1834)
  • Morris, Charles, 1784-1856
  • United States. Navy -- Regulations

Genre Terms

  • Manuscripts
  • Ships' logs
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Contents List

Box 1 Folder 1

The Regulations for the Internal Government of the United States Frigate Congress, 1815-1816

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