Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Humphreys mss., 1814-1825, consist of the journal of the Atlantic cruise of the U.S. Frigate Constitution, by A.Y. Humphreys, -1826, chaplain and purser of the U.S. Navy. Reports the taking of the prize ships, Lord Nelson, British schooner, and the British ship, Susan; the battle with and capture of the Cyane, British frigate, and the Levant, British sloop; Humphreys boarding the Levant as purser; the landing of prisoners at Port Praya, Island of St. Jago, Cape Verdi Islands; the attack of the British frigates Newcastle, Acasta, and Leander; the recapture of the Levant; the British treatment of prisoners; and the Levant's journey to Barbados. A.D. 40p. 33cm.

On page six Humphreys states that this is a recapitulary journal written after he reached Barbados. The original account was destroyed when the Levant was captured as is noted on page thirty-six.

A holograph transcript accompanied the journal.

Included is also a letter copybook, April 11, 1815, to December 6, 1825. Humphreys was acting purser of the U.S. brig, Prometheus, August 17, 1815-July 17, 1816; acting purser and purser of the U.S. brig, Spark, July 20, 1816- February 15, 1819; as purser of the U.S. frigate, United States, March 2, 1819-January 16, 1821; as purser of the U.S. schooner, Alligator, March 23, 1821-February 27, 1823; as purser of the U.S. ship, Peacock, November 18, 1823-December 6, 1825. At the end of the volume several pages are devoted to finances. The correspondence deals primarily with provisions and finances. A.D.S. 178p. 31cm.

Collection size: 3 items

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.