|Title:||The USS Essex: and the Birth of the American Navy|
|Categories:||The Walter Cronkite Collection|
|Authors:||Frances Diane Robotti, James Vescovi , Frances Diane Robotti, James Vescovi|
|Publisher:||Adams Media Corporation|
|Number of pages:||302|
The USS Essex, a thirty-two gun frigate built in 1799 by the merchants of Salem, was known around the world for her speed and graceful lines, achieving a brilliant series of dramatic firsts for the young American Navy.
She became the first U.S. war ship to round the Cape of Good Hope into the Indian Ocean. Thirteen years later, the Essex became the first American man-of-war to round the Horn into the Pacific, where her crew fought-and lost-one of the bloodiest sea battles in U.S. History. A list of her commanders-Edward Preble, William Bainbridge, James Barron, and David Porter-reads like a who's who of the early American Navy. David Farragut served as a midshipman before achieving fame as the first rear admiral of the US Navy.
The Essex's most important role, however was in promoting and protecting the interests of the United States throughout the world. By the late 1790s, the young country was emerging from its colonial dependence on Europe into a global commercial presence and a budding world power in its own right. Its future growth depended on international trade, and that trade depended, in turn, on unimpeded access to the sea.
The history of the Essex is both a stirring nautical adventure and an engaging look at an important turning point in the history of the young American nation.