News of the US: June 1815

June 1: From New Orleans — “From the immense slaughter of the enemy below our town, and the number of putrid carcasses visible to the eye, being covered only with a light mould, we apprehend an early epidemic and fatal season, though we still continue healthy. The great height of the river is also an additional cause of alarm; every light puff of wind from the eastward which passes over the field of action, brings with it an evidence that their bodies are still there. It is a horrid sight. Their bodies ought to have been taken up and buried before they became putrid.”–New York Spectator, July 12, 1815

June 1: From the New York Columbian — “This morning at about half past 9 o’clock, the steam frigate Fulton the First, left Beekman slip, amid the acclamations of thousands assembled to witness this first essay of her own propelling powers. She moved majestically up the East river, nearly to the ship yards, then put about and returned on Long Island side affording the inhabitants of Brooklyn a fine view of her gigantic form.”–reprinted by the Centinel of Freedom, June 6, 1815

June 2: From the National Intelligencer — “Our national ship, the Constitution, is once more arrived. Let us keep ‘Old Iron-Sides’ at home.–She has literally, become a nation’s ship and should be preserved. Not as a ‘sheer hulk in ordinary,’ (for she is no ordinary vessel) but, in honourable pomp, as a glorious monument of her own, and our other naval victories. She has ‘done her duty;’ and we can therefore afford to preserve her from future dangers.”–Rhode Island American, June 2, 1815

June 3: From Plattsburgh — “Deserters from the British army in Canada continue to come in almost every day–about 20 came in yesterday; they are of all nations, many of them can scarcely speak a word of English.–They have lately drawn new clothing, and frequently bring all their equipments, but very little cash.”—Providence Patriot, June 17, 1815

June 3: From Salem — “Arrived at Marblehead on Wednesday, schr. _____, Maley, from Grand Bank, with 13,500 Cod Fish; and on Thursday night, schr. Two Brothers, from G. Bank, with 15,000 fish.–Spoke on the Bank, a Marblehead schr. belonging to Mr. J. Oliver, doing well–fish remarkably plenty.”–Richmond Enquirer, June 10, 1815

June 5: From Mobile — “The new tract of country, added to the Mississippi territory, by the treaty entered into between gen. Jackson and the Creek Indians, is settling very fast.–About two hundred miles are added to the eastern frontier of the territory; and, the additional district is probably from one hundred to one hundred and fifty miles wide.”–Scioto Supporter, July 18, 1815

June 5: From Fort Stoddert — “We begin to look for a renewal of Indian hostilities. The British Col. Nichols, it is said, has made large presents to them on the Appalachicola of arms, ammunition, and provisions; built two block-houses for them, charged them not to abandon the lands ceded to Gen. Jackson and given them reason to expect British assistance in two or three years. About 900 Indians assembled there, and a large body of Negroes. The Spaniards are in as much dread as ourselves.”–Richmond Enquirer, July 5, 1815

June 5: From Niles’ Register — “On the 5th of June there yet remained at Dartmoor 2400 American prisoners. We are really becoming impatient at this strange detention of our people.”–Adams Centinel, August 16, 1815

June 6: From Stonington — “The Diving Bell has been used at Stonington Con. in getting up a quantity of shot &c. thrown overboard by the British frigate Pacolus in the attack on Stonington when she grounded on the bar. A quantity of copper and 11,202 pounds of shot have been obtained.”–Centinel of Freedom, June 6, 1815

June 7: From Zanesville, Ohio — “By Lieutenant Patterson, just from Detroit, we learn that difficulty had arisen with regard to the reciprocal surrender of the forts of Mackinaw and Malden. Our troops still held Malden, on account that the Indians were not willing to let us have possession of Mackinaw.”–Providence Patriot, June 24, 1815

June 8: From Delaware — “M. Dupont, the public spirited proprietor of the Powder Mills on the Brandywine, (Del.) at which several persons were killed by an explosion on the 8th inst. has settled a yearly pension of one hundred dollars on the family of each of the several persons who were killed on that occasion.”–Raleigh Register, June 30, 1815

June 8: From London — “The Hon. John Q. Adams, as American Minister, was introduced to the Prince Regent, at a levee, on the 8th June–delivered his credentials, & was graciously received.”–Raleigh Register, August 4, 1815

June 8: News reported by the New York Gazette — “John [sic] Poinsett, Esq. late American Consul at Chili, has arrived at Charleston via Madeira.”

June 9: From Norfolk — “On Friday last arrived here, in 16 days from Martinique, the schr. Edward Graham, Capt. Bissel, from whom we learn, that that island had declared for the Bourbons, and kept the white flag flying . . . .”–New York Spectator, June 17, 1815

June 9: From Boston — “Yesterday John Adams, late President of the United States, visited the U. S. ship Independence in this port, and on his going on board a national salute was fired.”–Centinel of Freedom, June 13, 1815

June 10: From St. Louis — “Last Sunday, Mr. Alexander Spencer was shot, stabbed and scalped within three miles of the town of St. Charles, on the road to Cuive. Indians are seen almost daily in the vicinity of Portage and the other villages beyond the Missouri.– Washington (Ky.) Union, July 14, 1815

June 10: Letter from St. Mary’s to the Georgia Governor — “It is proper your Excellency should know, that on the 7th inst. a brig and transport arrived at Amelia Island, with Col. Nichols, Capt. Woodbine, an Indian Chief and his son. They have been asked, if they were prepared to take possession of the Province? One of them replied, they were not yet supplied with money and provisions for the purpose–that was the sole cause of delay; the supply was soon expected.”–New York Spectator, July 8, 1815

June 11: From Natchez — “A Spaniard has arrived a few days since from San Antonio, and reports: 1. That Arredondo was attacked in the plain near Monterey, by General Palhou, who defeated him and put to death all the European soldiers of Arredondo’s army that fell into his hands–that he took possession of Monterrey, where he now has his head quarters. 2. That Arredondo was at Laredo, retreating towards San Antonio.”–Richmond Enquirer, August 2, 1815

June 11: From London — “The ship Mexico, from New-York [with Washington Irving and Thomas Gallaudet on board], and five other American vessels, arrived in the river, and were beating up for Liverpool on the morning of the 11th June.”–Alexandria Gazette, July 29, 1815

June 11: From New York — “Col. M’Ree and Maj. Thayer, of the U.S. Engineers, sailed in the Congress frigate for Europe, on the 11th instant. These gentlemen are to be landed in France for the purpose of visiting the Military Institutions of that country; and are authorized to purchase such Books and Instruments as may be thought necessary for the Military Academy at West Point–Adams Centinel, June 28, 1815

June 13: From Bardstown, Kentucky — “It is with pleasure we insert in this day’s paper the arrival of the Steam Boat Enterprise, at Louisville in the short distance of twenty-five days from New Orleans, a distance of fifteen hundred miles. . . . The price of freight from New Orleans to Louisville, it is said, will be reduced to $3.50 cents per hundred. The price of freight is at this time from five to six dollars.”–Centinel of Freedom, July 4, 1815

June 13: From Gibraltar — “Quick passage.–Commodore Decatur sailed from N. York on the 20th of May, and arrived at Gibraltar in 24 days, on the 13th of June–a handsome specimen of the sailing of American squadrons.–Aurora, July 31, 1814

June 13: From Connecticut — “Several of the prisoners lately confined in Dartmoor prison, who arrived in the cartel ship Neptunus, landed at New-Haven, and proceeded on their way to New York. They were destitute of money, and were obliged to beg for bread along the road. . . . On Sunday the 13th ult. these poor and unfortunate men were arrested, and thrown into prison at Fairfield (Con.) for travelling on foot on the Lord’s Day!”–Susquehanna Democrat, July 28, 1815

June 14: From Detroit — “considerable jealousy exists between the British and Americans in that neighborhood. The British troops are stationed at Sandwich, and have with them about 500 Indians. Desertions from the British are daily occurring; and have been so frequent as to induce the British commander, Col. James, to offer a reward of fifty dollars to the Indians for every scalp taken out of his lines after dark.”–Providence Patriot, July 15, 1815

June 15: “Captain Parker, in 20 days from Carthagena, informs that Gen. Bolivar had embarked for Jamaica in a British brig of war. A number of the Carthagenians had rallied round his standard, for the purpose of opposing the Spaniards in the interior.”–Independent American, June 28, 1815

June 16: From Raleigh — American Independence.– “On Wednesday evening last, the Intendant of Police convened the citizens of Raleigh, in order to make arrangements for this purpose. A Committee of Arrangement, A Committee for preparing Toasts, an Orator, &c. were accordingly appointed.”–Raleigh Register June 16, 1815

June 17: From New York — “Among the votes given at the late election in New York, there was one found in the ballot box, at Olean, for ‘The Devil and Tom Walker.’ This must have been a peace vote, as the democrats cherish no friendship for princes, neither of the earth, nor ‘of thepower of the air.'”–Aurora, June 17, 1815

June 18: News from Gibraltar, via Boston — “Horatio Sprague, Esq. (of this town) resident at Gibraltar, had given all the letters he had received from Capt. Smith, dated at Algiers, and likewise from the Consul at Tunis, stating the conduct of the Bey of Tripoli, to Com. Decatur, previous to the squadron proceeding up to Algiers.”–Providence Patriot, July 29, 1815

June 18: From the Boston Gazette Office — “The brig Abaellino, capt. Wyer, has just arrived from France, and brings Paris papers to the 23d June: They contain official accounts of the great overthrow of the whole French army, on the 18th June; with the loss of all its cannon, baggage and stores.”–The Gleaner, August 12, 1815

June 19: From New Haven — “Arrived at this port on Saturday morning last, British transport ship Neptunus, with 270 American prisoners. We understand that when this ship left England she was ordered to make the port of Baltimore; but the prisoners (mostly belonging to northern ports) a few days since took the command from the English captain and made for New Haven.”–American Daily Advertiser, June 23, 1815

June 19: From Norfolk — “The whole of the Gun-Boats allotted to this station (16 in number) were sold at auction at the Navy-Yard, Gosport, on Friday last. The lowest bid was $305, and the highest $720. Average price of the whole $486.”–Richmond Enquirer, June 24, 1815

June 19: From Stephen Decatur, off Carthagena, Spain — “I have the honor to inform you that on the 17th inst. off Cape de Gatt, the squadron fell in with, and captured, an Algerine Frigate of 46 guns, and between 4 and 500 men, commanded by Rais Mammida, who bore, the title of Admiral; she struck her flag after a running fight of twenty-five minutes.”–Vermont Mirror, September 13, 1815

June 20: From Buffalo — “On Monday last, the collector of the customs of this district, seized at Daniel’s Tavern, 26 m. from this place, a few bbls, 4th proof Jamaica, in a tinman’s waggon, the waggon with a span of horses, were also seized. The spirits were stored with Hart & Lay, merchants, of this village. On Tuesday night, their store cellar was broken open, and the spirits released from confinement.”–New York Gazette, June 28, 1815

June 20: News of Boston — “The legislature of Massachusetts has adjourned, after an insipid session. Mr. Otis, strange to tell! has very much vexed his party friends by his affected moderation.–Little has been said at this session, of the Hartford Convention, its parents having become perfectly ashamed that it ever came into existence.”–Baltimore Patriot, June 20, 1815

June 21: From the American consul at Alicante, Spain — “Sir– I have the honor to inform you, that by a letter this moment received from my vice consul, Nicholas Briale, at Carthagena, I learn that the first division of our squadron under com. Decatur, had appeared off that port, and sent in an Algerine frigate of 44 guns and 500 men, captured off Cape de Gate, after a short engagement, during which the commander of the Algerine was killed. Our loss consisted of four men.”–Centinel of Freedom, August 29, 1815

June 21: From Washington __ “Since the re-establishment of peace, the frontier of the United States bordering on Mexico will, we expect, attract the attention of many of the enterprizing emigrants from the Atlantic states. A letter from a gentleman who has recently removed thither, to his friends in this city, speaks in flattering terms of Natchitoches, a place which many of us in this part of the world have been in the habit of regarding as almost beyond the bounds of civilization.”–New York Gazette, June 24, 1815

June 23: From Norfolk — “We are extremely gratified in being able to announce to the public, upon the best authority, that the benefits of Steam-Boat navigation, are to be speedily extended to the waters of Virginia.– A steam-boat of the size and constructed after the plan of “The Richmond,” . . . is designed to run between Norfolk, Richmond and Petersburg, and will commence on this route early in the month of October next.”–Richmond Enquirer, June 28, 1815

June 24: From St. Louis — “Some few days ago, a speech was received by Gov. Clark fr. the Cheerokees residing on the Arkansas. They complain that by a late act of the legislature of that territory, a new country has been made, whose bounds interfere with that tract of country guaranteed to them by the President of the United States, and requested the affair may be laid before the executive of the United States.”–Alexandria Gazette, July 27, 1815

June 25: From North Carolina — “MARRIED. On the 25th ult. in Caswell county, North Carolina, by the Rev. Barzilla Graves, Capt. Wm. Graves, son of John Graves, Esq. to Miss Nancy Graves, daughter of General Graves.”–New York Spectator, July 1, 1815

June 25: From the Log Book of the Legal Tender– “lat. 21, 40, long. 52, [on the outward passage] at half past 4, P. M. while laying becalmed, we saw some object about 50 yards distant, whose upper parts very much resembled a human being, its face being a death-like paleness–it was out of the water several feet, and disappeared in about two minutes. Its lower parts (which could be discerned on the waters edge) appeared like a fish.”–Albany Argus, September 1, 1815

June 26: From on board the new ship U. S. Independence–“Another unfortunate circumstance about her is, her being too crank, as the sailors term it, consequently the lee parts are entirely under water even with a light breeze. Whether all this can be remedied or not I cannot tell, at any rate we try it on Thursday next.”–United States Gazette for the country, July 5, 1815

June 27: From Steubenville, Ohio, from the Western Herald — “Col James, the British commander at Sandwich, U. Canada, has offered 50 dollars to the Indians for the scalps of every deserter from the British army. How is a British scalp to be known from an American scalp? . . . Five dollars was the reward offered by the British for a scalp previous to the last war, and it was found that, for that reward, the scalps of Americans were daily brought in–when such was the fact, what must be the effect of a reward of ten times that amount for a scalp?”–Providence Patriot, August 19, 1815

June 27: From Marseilles, France — “On the 27th a telegraph despatch announced in this city, that ‘Bonaparte had been hanged, and all his family that were in Paris, massacred, and that the members of the two chambers of the Legislative body, to the number of 800, were also put to death.”–Baltimore Patriot, August 10, 1815

June 28: From the Great Lakes — “We understand that part of the Lake Champlain fleet, consisting of 5 sloops and ten gun boats and gallies, are to be sold at public auction at Whitehall, on the 28th inst. And it is stated that Capt. Chauncey, of the Washington 74 at Portsmouth, is proceeding to Lake Ontario to finish the ships building there, and sink them for their preservation.”–Raleigh Register, June 23, 1815

June 28: From Charleston — “It was on the TWENTY-EIGHTH OF JUNE, in the memorable year of ’76, that a small PALMETTO fort erected on Sullivan’s Island was attacked by the British . . . . This (comparatively) tremendous force was withstood by a little fortress, manned with less than 400 freemen . . . . the cause of Liberty was triumphant.”–Raleigh Register, July 21, 1815

June 30: From Paris — “We presume that the frigates which are to transport Napoleon Bonaparte to the United States of America, are waiting at Rochefort. The following persons are to accompany him: Bertrand, Savary, Lallemand, Labdoyere, and many others.”--Maryland Gazette, August 17, 1815

About the Author

Mary Bowden is a researcher working at the Texas Collections Deposit Library at the University of Texas. A little-known but invaluable treasure of U.S. history and the history of American journalism is archived in the collection of bound United States’ Newspapers at the University of Texas at Austin. The collection began more than a century ago and has been stored in recent years in the Texas Collections Deposit Library on the campus of the University of Texas. The sizeable archive is currently in the early stages of being digitized before being moved to a more climate-controlled environment at the J.J. Pickle Research Campus of the University, on the north side of Austin.

Mary Bowden