Crawford, Michael J. Naval Documents of the American Revolution, Vol. 11, (Naval Historical Center, Department of the Navy, 2005).
Hatcher, Patricia Law. Abstracts of Graves of Revolutionary Patriots, Vol.I: A-D, (Pioneer Heritage Press, 1987).
Kaminkow, Marion and Jack. Mariners of the American Revolution, (Mage Carta Book Company, 1967).
Kellow, Ken. "American War for Independence at Sea, entry for the "Black Snake", (awiatsea.com, posted September 21, 2014).
Lewis, James A. Neptune's Militia: The Frigate South Carolina During the American Revolution, (The Kent State University Press, 1999).
Maryland Historical Society. Records of Maryland Troops in the Continental Service During the War of the American Revolution, 1775 - 1783, Vol. 18, (Maryland Historical Society, 1900).
Revill, Janie. Copy of the Original Index Book: Showing the Revolutionary Claims Filed in South Carolina Between August 20, 1783 and August 31, 1786, (Genealogical Publishing Company, 1969).
"To Thomas Jefferson from Castries, 19 April 1787", (Founders Online, National Archives, last updated: 2015-09-29).
According to Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, page 185 - note 8, there were others who left the frigate South Carolina when Major William Jackson and James Searle left after the frigate had docked in Corunna, Spain. The post immediately prior to this post and dated "12/08/2015", documented the service of Nicholas Bartlett and, vicariously, his brother, Jonathan Bartlett, both of who left the frigate at Corunna, Spain. Both Jackson's and Searle's interactions with Commodore Alexander Gillon had been marked by strife and argumentation, so their departure from the frigate came as no surprise to those who chose to remain with the ship's company. Again according to Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, page 43, "...John Trumbull and Joshua Barney left, they were soul mates of Jackson and Searle and had long since lost confidence in Gillon." This same passage, same pagination but a sentence earlier states that "...they were joined by a few other passengers but, not the majority." It seems that some of these were more than "passengers" and actually made up a portion of the commissioned officer compliment of the frigate South Carolina. It is the accompanying footnote on page 185, note *, that provides the names of those officers who left the service of the frigate South Carolina at this point in time. But, there were more than the two Bartlett's, both of them lieutenants, that left. There were two midshipmen, as well, who also departed the frigate South Carolina at this same time - James Hogan and John Buckley.
As a reader can ascertain from the slim number of sources cited on these two individuals, there is not a great deal of information published on either or both of these gentlemen. As a matter of fact, the only source that deals with both of these men in the same general passage of text is Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, page 185 note 8, and simply mentions that both James Hogan and John Buckley left the frigate South Carolina while she lay in Corunna, Spain's harbor. What reason these two midshipmen had for leaving the frigate South Carolina at this point in time is neither stated nor implied in the text. Whether they left for a reason of mutual dislike for a specific situation on board the frigate or whether they left for different reasons is open to conjecture only.
Since there are two men involved here and information exists on both of these men, this post will first address James Hogan. According to Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, the section entitled "Appendix: Crew and Marines of the South Carolina", pages 135-170, the following citation appears for James Hogan:
James Hogan midshipman? page 151
It would seem from the nature of this citation that the rank of James Hogan on board the frigate South Carolina was in question. The post entitled "Midshipmen on board the Frigate South Carolina" and dated "01/16/2015" cites the names of twenty-eight men who all held the rank of "midshipman" on board the frigate South Carolina during either the first, maiden voyage of the frigate or on the second, brief voyage ending in the capture of the frigate South Carolina on December 20, 1782 off Cape Henlopen, DE. In all the cases of the cited men, their rank of :midshipman" does not have a question mark after the rank designation except in one case - James Hogan. There are even men cited in this list of midshipmen whose full names are not known but, still they are definitively designated as "midshipman. James Hogan is the sole example of a midshipman whose rank is held in question. There is no indication either in the text of the work itself or in the section entitled "Appendix: Crew and Marines of the South Carolina" as to why the rank of James Hogan is in question.
The writer of this blog only knows of two other references to James Hogan in relation to the frigate South Carolina. The first is that contained in a letter from Castries to Thomas Jefferson and is actually recorded in an enclosure to this letter. According to the Founders Online letter, page 1, the enclosure states that it is addressed to "Avis aux Voluntaires" and is "... undated but evidently issued shortly before or soon after 17 August 1780, by which captain John Joyner of L'Indien promised to pay each man his road expenses to Amsterdam where wages would start at 3 pounds sterling per sailor; to give officers and sailors to the number of 500 half the value of prizes taken; and to show good treatment to those behaving as true Americans; in return for which the signatories to the "Avis" acknowledge themselves to be volunteers in the service of South Carolina for twelve months and promise to reach Amsterdam as speedily as possible..." This document contains "...the names of 24 persons, beginning "Grinnell, Lieut. - Alexander Moore - James Hogan," &c." James Grinnell is indeed cited as a "lieutenant" in Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, section entitled "Appendix: Crew and Marines of the South Carolina" page 149, and Alexander Moore is cited as a "midshipman" in the same section of Lewis's work, page 158. James Hogan's name is the only other name cited out of twenty-four names that appear addended to this document.
The second reference to James Hogan is cited on page 185 note 8 on Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, and may have bearing on why Midshipman James Hogan chose to leave the frigate South Carolina as she lay in the harbor of Corunna, Spain. The passage has already been cited previously as concerns the Bartlett's, Nicholas and Jonathan. But, then, according to Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, page 185 note 8, it goes on to speak on James Hogan, "...and Hogan had been placed in irons for giving liquor to the captured crew from the Alexander."
(Note: The post addressing the individuals who carried the rank of "midshipman" and served on board the frigate South Carolina at some point in her two voyages is entitled "Midshipmen on board the Frigate South Carolina" and dated "01/16/2015". The post specifically addressing the capture and subsequent fate of the privateer ship out of Liverpool, England, the Alexander, is entitled "The Alexander or Prize to the South Carolina": The Story of the Frigate South Carolina's Second Prize, Her Fate, and the Fate of Her Prize Crew - Information Introduced and New Findings - " and is dated "11/24/2015". Midshipman James Hogan is directly cited in the former post and his story adds to the overall story of the capture and subsequent fate of the Alexander in the later post.)
Placing any man "in irons" on board a ship-of-war during time of conflict is a serious matter and not to be entered into lightly. But, for an officer, of any rank, to be the unfortunate recipient of such punitive treatment is of an extremely serious nature. Commodore Alexander Gillon must have felt that the punishment equaled the crime and sentenced Midshipman Hogan to be placed in irons for his actions concerning the captured crew of the Alexander. By the fact that Commodore Gillon ordered this punishment to Midshipman Hogan demonstrates that the portion of the captured crew of the Alexander who received these "liquors" were prisoners of war on board the frigate South Carolina rather than captives left on board the captured Alexander itself. Captured crewmen were indeed prisoners-of-war but, were still a dangerous lot to have on board any vessel. At any point, they could surprise the crew of their captor's ship, seize that ship, and steer away towards a friendly port. Thus, providing them with any means of executing a successful rebellion against their antagonists, including getting them inebriated, was indeed a dangerous and irresponsible act that needed to be punished immediately and on the spot. Thus, for this disciplinary infraction, Midshipman James Hogan found himself placed in irons on board the frigate South Carolina while she was at sea.
At some point after the frigate South Carolina reached Corunna, Spain and docked there, several individuals chose to leave the ship and make their own ways back to America. One of these was former-Midshipman James Hogan. There is no indication as to why he chose to leave the frigate South Carolina but, any number of possible reasons present themselves, not the least of which is the humiliation he may well have felt at being placed in irons while the ship was still at sea. He may have left the ship because he felt that he had no other option to preserve his honor. He may have left to get some sort of "revenge" against Commodore Gillon and his decision to place him in irons. He may have been swayed by Major Jackson or Mr. Searle's arguments against Commodore Gillon and his decisions effecting the ship and its operations. He may have chosen to leave the frigate as a statement of support for their arguments. Whatever James Hogan's reason for leaving the frigate South Carolina, all we know for certain is that he did indeed leave the ship in Corunna, Spain and seek an alternate way home as did Jackson, Searle, both of the Bartlett's, and most probably a few others.
There is one, final piece of information that may well be a reference to this specific Midshipman James Hogan, formerly of the frigate South Carolina. This piece of information is taken from Revill's work, Copy of the Original Index Book. This work is a compilation of all the "returns" filed in South Carolina for wages and compensation for duties or other services during the American Revolution. The vast majority of the men's names cited in this extensive work have only a single numbered "return" next to their names, indicating that they were paid in full in one "return". But, the section of this work entitled "Foreward" and covering pages 3-4, states that sometimes a "return" was rejected or deferred for one reason or another. According to Revill's work, Copy of the Original Index Book, page 3, "...only a very few claims were rejected or deferred, but it sometimes requires study to determine whether a name followed by several return numbers has reference to one person or several persons of the same name, since a name was entered in the index book only one time, although there might have been several persons to whom it referred." The entry for James Hogan appears on page 161 and is as follows:
James Hogan Return Numbers 45, 75, 102
Each of these numbers indicate the date these were sent to the legislative council for payment to the individual claimants or were rejected and had to be refiled at some point in the future by the claimant. The following dates were associated with the "return" indicated below:
Return Number 45 April 25, 1785
Return Number 75 September 25, 1785
Return Number 102 March 4, 1786
These "return numbers" are either the dates these audited "returns" were passed to the legislative council for payment to the applicants or the dates these claims were rejected. The fact that three dates of "returns" follow James Hogan's name may indicate that there was more than one individual who had this same name, as indicated in the quoted passage above. But, the name "James Hogan" is fairly unique, though it is not impossible that there might have been other men by this identical name. If he were indeed the James Hogan in question here, these multiple dates might well mean that his claim against the state of South Carolina was rejected at least three times. All the claims contained in Revill's work, Copy of the Original Index Book, were filed between August 20, 1783 and August 31, 1786. Alexander Gillon, former Commodore of the Navy of South Carolina and commanding officer on board the frigate South Carolina, was still active in South Carolina politics and society at this time. He may have been aware of James Hogan's attempted claims against the state of South Carolina and exerted effort and influence to block the payment of money to this former miscreant from among his former crew.
(Note: Just as an aside, as far as the writer of this blog knows these claims against South Carolina by former Midshipman James Hogan never received a "stub indent" and thus were never paid to him.)
The second midshipman who left the service of the frigate South Carolina as she lay in the harbor of Corunna, Spain was John Buckley. There appears to be a bit more information on this individual than on the previously cited individual, James Hogan. He also, seems to have had more involvement in the American Revolution in that he may have already spent time in a British prison prior to signing on board the frigate South Carolina and had prior service on board at least one other patriot ship-of-war, the schooner/armed brig, Black Snake. Also, it is possible that John Buckley and James Hogan may have had another "connection" between them due to there being some evidence that they might have hailed from the same state - Maryland. This will be better addressed in the latter part of this specific section on John Buckley.
According to Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, the section entitled "Appendix: Crew and Marines of the South Carolina' page 139, the entry for John Buckley is as follows:
John Buckley Midshipman
His last name is alternately spelled as "Buckle, Bulkey, Bulkley, Burkley and Buckley". There are a number of reasons why this blog writer has chosen to cite John's last name as "Buckley". First, no other variations of the last name are found in any of the sources, except for a single reference in Revill's work, Copy of the Original Index Book, page 48, to one "Bulkley" but, the associated first name is Joseph and not John. Usually, the first names are exactly the same in the sources and it is the last names that can vary in their spellings. Second, in the only textual reference to John Buckley in Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, page 185 note 8, the name is spelled as "John Buckley" with no other variant. Third, and finally, in both Kellow's article, entry for the "Black Snake", pages 1-2 and in Kaminkow's work, Mariners of the American Revolution, page 28, the name is cited as "John Buckley" in both cases.
As cited above, John Buckley had engaged in military/naval service in the patriot Cause earlier in the American Revolution, prior to signing on board the frigate South Carolina. According to Kellow's article, entry for the "Black Snake", John Buckley is documented as having served as a Lieutenant on board the schooner/armed brig Black Snake, sailing out of Martinique, from "... early 1777..." until August 24, 1777. On that date, the schooner/armed brig was captured by two sloop tenders from the HMS Portland, the Resolution and the Tartar, after an eight hour chase at the end of which the Black Snake struck her colors with no actual resistance. According to Kellow's article, entry for the "Black Snake", page 2, both the Resolution and the Tartar escorted the Black Snake into the Barbados, arriving at English Harbor on the island of Antigua on October 16, 1777. The British reported the Black Snake as having "...a battery of eight guns and a crew of forty men, twenty-four of which were French...".
According to Kellow's article, entry for the "Black Snake", page 2, the captain of the Black Snake, William Lecraw, "...was sent to Mill Prison, near Plymouth, England, being committed on 12 March 1778. He was pardoned for exchange on 11 December 1779, but escaped in 1780." According to Kaminkow's work, Mariners of the American Revolution, pages 114 and 120, "William Lecraw was a native of Marblehead, Massachusetts. He was a captain on board the Black Snake. He was captured in August 1777 and committed to Old Mill Prison on March 12, 1778. He was pardoned for exchange on December 11, 1779 but, subsequently escaped."
Both the sources cited above make reference to John Buckley. In Kellow's article, entry for "Black Snake", page 2, it states that "Lecraw's two lieutenants, Jonathan Wheeler and John Buckley, were also committed to Mill Prison, on 13 March ." According to Kaminkow's work, Mariners of the American Revolution, page 28, "John Buckley was a native of Maryland or North Carolina. He served on board the Black Snake. He was committed to Old Mill Prison on March 12, 1778. He was pardoned for exchange on December 11, 1779." Obviously, Kaminkow's work makes no reference to John Buckley as being a lieutenant on board the Black Snake. But, it is common for Kaminkow's work, Mariners of the American Revolution, to make no reference to the rank of an individual who is cited in the text of the work. A third, corroborating reference to John Buckley appears in Crawford's work, Naval Documents of the American Revolution, Vol. 11, page 1082. The entry is dated "March 13, 1778" and is taken from the journal of Dr. Jonathan Haskins, who was also incarcerated in Old Mill Prison. In the citation, he states "...This Day three American Officers were Committed they belonged to A Privateer Schooner Call'd the Black Snake Mounting 8 C. [carriage] Guns William LeCraw Master out of Martinico, taken by the Tarter & Resolution Tenders (Jonathan Wheeler and John Buckley his Lieutenants)."
The final reference we have to a "John Buckley" is from Hatcher's work, Abstract of Graves of Revolutionary Patriots, Vol. 1: A-D, page 128. The reference here is to the burial plot of a "John Buckley", though, unfortunately, we have no means of verification known to this blog writer as to whether this is the same John Buckley referred to in this post. The passage simply cites that a "John Buckley" is buried in Copp's Hill Cemetery in Boston, MA and that his grave was identified by the Daughters of the American Revolution in 1946. In the paragraph immediately above, Kaminkow's work, Mariners of the American Revolution, page 28, cites John Buckley as being a native of either Maryland or North Carolina. It is somewhat improbable that John Buckley would be buried in Boston, MA if he hailed from either of those two more southerly regions and had connections there that would entice him to return after the war had concluded. But, in the same way it was not uncommon for men, especially former mariners, to settle in a port city they had come to be fond of through their contacts with that port city during their careers as mariners. This is all completely conjectural and must remain so until the time that this blog writer locates information which sheds more light on this particular aspect of the life of John Buckley.
This subject of the origins of Midshipman John Buckley provides a segue into the next topic concerning him - why he chose to leave the frigate South Carolina while she was in the harbor at Corunna, Spain. According to Crawford's work, Naval Documents of the American Revolution, Vol. 11, page 581, there is a reference to a "James Hogan" as having been a member of the crew of the patriot ship-of-war Alfred. The Alfred was one of the earliest vessels-of-war utilized by the patriots and was a converted merchantman. She was captured on March 9, 1778 by the HMS Ariadne and the HMS Ceres and taken into Barbados. Cited among the captured crew of 181 men from the Alfred is a "James Hogan". According to the Maryland Historical Society's work, Records of Maryland Troops, page 657, a "James Hogan" is cited as having been an "ordinary sailor". It is feasible that James Hogan had been a sailor on board the Alfred and was captured, along with the ship and her crew, on March 9, 1778 and was sent to a British prison, to be later released in a prisoner cartel. He could have ended up in France or Holland and, like so many others who served on board the frigate South Carolina, was looking for a means to get home to America. He could have signed on as a midshipman due to his previous experience or due to his having "impressed" Commodore Gillon through some other means. Again, we have no means of knowing if this is the same "James Hogan" in question here or even if he managed to get home through the means described above. We only know that a "James Hogan" was indeed a member of the crew of the captured Alfred.
If James Hogan and John Buckley were both indeed from Maryland, they could have possibly known each other prior to the commencement of the war or due to a common state of origin, become friends later, possibly in a British prison. It is feasible that when James Hogan chose to leave the frigate South Carolina, John Buckley also chose to leave with his friend or due to an offense taken on behalf of his friend. James Hogan had, at least it appears, a reason for leaving the frigate South Carolina but, there is no reason, stated or implied, as to why John Buckley chose to leave the frigate South Carolina as she lay in the harbor at Corunna, Spain. This paragraph is completely conjectural as to the reason for Midshipman John Buckley leaving the service of the frigate South Carolina at such an early point in her maiden voyage to America. Only further research can possibly answer this question concenring the services of Midshipman John Buckley or why he chose to leave the frigate South Carolina when he did.