The information presented in this post is taken from the following sources:
Grundset, Eric G., editor. Forgotten Patriots: African American and American Indian Patriots in the Revolutionary War - A Guide to Service, Sources and Studies, (National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, 2008).
Lewis, James A. Neptune's Militia: The Frigate South Carolina During the American Revolution, (The Kent State University Press, 1999).
Middlebrook, Louis F. The Frigate South Carolina: A Famous Revolutionary War Ship, (The Essex Institute, 1929).
Moss, Bobby Gilmer. Roster of South Carolina Patriots in the American Revolution, (Genealogical Publishing Company, 1983).
Wates, Wylma Anne, editor. Stub Entries to Indents: Issued in Payment of Claims Against South Carolina Growing Out of the Revolution, (South Carolina Archives Department, 1957).
Pension Application of Nicholas Bartlett S33986
In the earlier post of the above title, the names of six men of African-American descent were given, along with any bit of information concerning them, who had served in some capacity on board the frigate South Carolina prior to her capture on December 20, 1782 off the Capes of the Delaware.
In the earlier post, this blog writer only had the Lewis source, Neptune's Militia, cited above from which to work. But, the Grundset work, Forgotten Patriots, also cited above, gives a slightly fuller picture of these men who lived during the period of our struggle for independence. The information is only fractionally more but,m still gives more of a picture of these African-American service men.
Grundset's work, Forgotten Patriots, page 591, begins with this disclaimer:
"The inclusion of some of these men in this list may be open to differing interpretation by other researchers as to whether or not they were of African, "Indian", European, or mixed descent. They are included here because of the possibility [author's emphasis] that they were of minority ethnic background based on name analysis and/or military occupation/rank and not because of a specific statement in the records of their ethnicity. Most Revolutionary War records do not indicate race or color."
The list cited below will begin with the men's names and their variations in the first column as found in Grundset's work, Forgotten Patriots. The second column will contain any citation for these men as found in Grundset's work also. the third column contains any citation for these men as found in Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, the section entitled "Appendix: Crew and Marines of the South Carolina". Pagination is included as they relate to that column's information.
South Carolina African-American Black?
(Grundset, p. 591) (Lewis, p. 141)
Pompey Gazer African-American --------------
Grazer (Lewis, p. 148)
(Grundset, p. 592)
Dublin Gillon African-American "Black slave" Black slave
(Grundset, p. 592) (Lewis, p. 148)
Premium Griffen African-American, landsman Landsman
Premius Griffin (Lewis, p. 149)
Hector McKenzie African-American ----------------
(Grundset, p. 593) (Lewis, p. 157)
Anthony Porcy African-American "Black sailor" Black sailor
Povey (Lewis, p. 161)
(Grundset, p. 595)
(Note: The source for all the information cited in Grundset's work, Forgotten Patriots, is indeed Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, the section entitled "Appendix: Crew and Marines of the South Carolina" and an endnote found on page 197, note 5 in Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia. Thus, Grundset's work, Forgotten Patriots, appears to be a recitation of information contained in Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia.)
The names of these six men are encountered again on the day of the capture of the frigate South Carolina by the three British men-of-war off the Capes of the Delaware on December 20, 1782. All of their names appear on one of the individual captive lists of the three British men-of-war and were distributed among those warships as follows:
On the HMS Astrea:
On the HMS Quebec:
On the HMS Diomede:
Anthony Povey (Porcy)
(Note: All of the above cited men's names appear on one of the three captive lists for the three British men-of-war that carried them into New York City harbor as prisoners-of-war on December 23-24, 1782. But, there is something unique in the manner in which the name of South Carolina was recorded in the captive list for the HMS Diomede. In Middlebrook's work, The Frigate South Carolina, page 23, the name appears immediately below that of Anthony Povey (Porcy) but, is enclosed in parentheses. None of the other five men cited here are recorded in the same manner. There is no explanation for the use of these parentheses in the text.)
All six of these men were captured on December 20, 1782 and transported into New York City on board one of the three British men-of-war. This occurrence could possibly indicate that these men all signed on the frigate South Carolina as the ship lay in Philadelphia, PA harbor and thus on board the frigate for her final, brief cruise. But, they could also have just as easily been veterans of the first cruise of the frigate South Carolina when she set sail from the Texel in Holland for America. More information would need to be located on these men to illuminate exactly when and under what circumstances they signed onto the frigate South Carolina.
The writer of this blog believes that he six men cited above have been almost beyond a shadow of a doubt been proven to be the African-Americans who were crew members of the frigate South Carolina. The initial evidence presented in the Part I post of this same title and dated "01/22/2015" is further corroborated by the evidence presented in this specific post. Yet, there may have been at least one more individual of identifiable African-American heritage on board the frigate South Carolina.
This individual is cited in Lewis's work, Neptune's Militia, the section entitled "Appendix: Crew and Marines of the South Carolina", page 136 as having no "position" on board the frigate South Carolina and is named as follows:
Again, this assumption is made on the basis of the information shared in the quote from Grundset's work, Forgotten Patriots, page 591 cited at the beginning of this post. This is almost all the information that is known about this man, except for a last piece of speculative information that does concern him. In Middlebrook's work, The Frigate South Carolina, on pages 23-24 appears the captive list of the HMS Quebec. At the head of the list appears eight names of crew members of the frigate South Carolina with the side-annotation of "23 Dec'82 [Apparently taken on Ship's Book]". The name "Black Barney" appears as the second name in this short list. As cited in the post entitled "(Avoiding the) Descent into Hell" and dated "06/04/2015", this may well be an indication of recruitment efforts by the Royal Navy among the captured crew and marines of the frigate South Carolina and their success at least in luring eight of the members of the frigate into service on board the HMS Quebec. Again, Black Barney was listed among these men and thus may have chosen to escape the much-feared prison "hulks" of Wallabout Bay, NY by signing on board the HMS Quebec.
As to the fate of the rest of these six men, we know only a little. Documentation exists for all of these initial six men cited in this post being consigned to the various prison "hulks" moored in Wallabout Bay, NY. But, according to the captive list of the HMS Quebec, the prisoners-of-war off that British man-of-war were specifically consigned to the prison "hulk" Jersey. Premius Griffen's name appears on this list of unfortunate men. None of these six African-American men appear in Moss's work, Roster of South Carolina Patriots in the American Revolution, which may well indicate that none of these valiant men survived their incarceration on board the prison "hulks" of Wallabout Bay, NY to apply for pensions after the cessation of hostilities.
There is one more individual of possible African-American heritage who may have served on board the frigate South Carolina. This individual would almost certainly have served early in the first or maiden voyage of the frigate from the Texel in Holland to Corunna, Spain where the frigate first moored and resupplied. Evidence of the existence of this individual is found in Wates's work, Stub Entries to Indents, Books C-F, page 131, in the form of a stub indent paid to Lieutenant Nicholas Bartlett of the frigate South Carolina. The complete text of this stub indent is as follows:
"No. 726, Book C - Issued 9th of November 1790 to Mr. Nicholas Bartlett for Ninety seven Pounds 19/2 Sterling for balance of Pay due him as a Lieutenant on board the Frigate South Carolina. Also for Wages due his Servant.
Principal - 97p/19s/2d
Interest - 6p/17s/1d"
The last sentence of the actual indent text contains the statement that indicates the existence of another individual of possible African-American heritage on board the frigate South Carolina. That sentence reads - "Also for Wages due his Servant." Rather infrequently were slaves or personal body servants referred to specifically as "slaves" in any official correspondence. Ususally, the term seen above appeared - Servant. This unnamed "servant" is never mentioned nor referred to in Nicholas Bartlett's brief pension application, "Pension Application of Nicholas Bartlett S33986", which he filed when he was 69 years of age. It is documented that Nicholas Bartlett left the frigate South Carolina in Corunna, Spain on September 27, 1781, three days after it docked in that Spanish port city on September 24, 1781. There is the distinct possibility that this individual was not a slave or even of African-American descent. But, the lack of reference to this individual in Nicholas Bartlett's pension application and no references to him elsewhere in the documents leads one to believe that he was a slave owned by Nicholas Bartlett who functioned as a personal body servant or attendant to Lieutenant Nicholas Bartlett.