Request for Letter of Marque
23 June 1812

1st August 1812

9th October 1812

Head money 1

Head money 2

Lloyd's List

London Gazette
26 December 1812

Rapid of Portland
17th October 1812 by HMS Sapartan and Maidstone

Fortunately enough documents survive to give the career of this vessel: - the transcriptions are below, particularly interesting is that we have the list of owners.

Portland June 23 1812




Accounts of a declaration of war against Great Britain

having this day been received, I am induced to write to you

for the purpose of obtaining a commission for a vessel

that I have, as a privateer, her names is the Rapid

of Portland 190 tons per Register. The master or comm.-

ander’s name I cannot now mention as one is not yet

engaged – this if proper, can be left blank to be filled

up by the Collector of this place – you will also

please to forward Commissions for the Commander

to be filled up by the Collector of this place-

A considerable advantage will result from

Fitting out immediately, therefore if not contrary to

The uses of the Government, it would have a few

days to have the blank Commissions forwarded –

The Collector of this port has under his charge

six six & twelve pounder, purchased with an intent I

believe to put on board from vessel to conform

the Embargo, as these may not more be wanted for

the service of Government, will you be so good

as to direct the Collector to make sale of them?

It is difficult to obtain guns at this place –

Y[ou]r. Mo[st]. H[umble]. S[ervan]t

Wm Jewett


Portland August 1. 1812

To the Honourable James Monroe

Secretary of State


The subscribers beg leave to

represent , that the private armed Brig Rapid of Portland

United States built, having two masts, is eighty five feet

ten inches in length, twenty four feet eight inches in

breadth, ten feet four inches in depth and measures one

hundred ninety & 47/95ths tons is square sterned, no gallery

and billet head, mounted with fifteen carriage guns,

and navigated with one hundred men, commanded by

William Crabtree, and owned by James Jeweltt, Ruth Jewett,

William Crabtree, John Alden, Thomas Roach, Lemuel Weeks jnr?

William Chadwick, Joseph S. Jewett, Ralph Cross, George Hill

Joseph Cross Jnr., Daniel Manley, Reuben Morton, John Watson,

William Cross, Nehemiah Cram, Thomas Robison, Zachariah

Nayton, William Harper, Thomas Merrill Jnr? Henry Isley, Josiah

Paine, William Evans, John Stockman, Robert Isley and

Ebenezer Mayo of Portland, Thomas G, Thornton of Saco and

Frederick G. Bull of Boston, now ready for sea. They therefore

Apply to your honour for, and request that a commission of

Letter of marque and Reprisal may be issued for the above

Described vessel, agreeably to the act of congress passed the

26 th of June 1812, entitled an “Act concerning letters of

Marque Prizes and Prize Goods” – for which Bond will be

Given for the faithful observance of the treaties and laws

Of the United States and the Instructions which shall be


Very faithfully, we are, your

Obedient servants,

Robert Isley

Thomas Roach


Portland Oct. 9 1812


To the Honourable James Monroe

S[ecretary] of State

The subscriber begs leave

to represent, that the private armed Brig Rapid

of Portland, United States built, of the following descrip-

tion. Viz. in length is eighty five feet two inches, her breadth

twenty four feet eight inches, her depth ten feet four inches;

measuring one hundred ninety 47/95 tons. That she is a

square sterned brig has no gallery, and a Billet head

mounted with fourteen carriage guns, navigated

with ninety five men, and owned by Ruth Jewett,

widow, William –UNCLEAR

others, whereof Joseph Weeks is Master and now ready

for sea. I therefore apply to your honour for, and

request that a commission of letter of marque and

reprisal may be issued for the above described vessel

agreeably to the Act of Congress passes the 21 st of June

1812 – entitled “ an act concerning letters of marque

prizes and prize goods” for which bond will be given

for the faithful observance of the [unclear] and

laws of the U.[nited] States and the Instructions which shall

be given.

I have the honour to be

Very respectfully


Your obd[ient] serv[an]t

Robert [unclear]