John Barry – April 7, 1776

Experience the American dream with today’s Patriots of the Past interview. I’m your host, John Gillespie.

It’s April 7, 1776. I’m with Commander John Barry on the deck of the Continental ship, Lexington, and we’re in a fierce battle against the British ship, Edward.

JG: “Commander Barry, do you think you can capture this tender?”

JB: “Ay, Mr. Gillespie, we will not only capture it, we will rule the seas before this war is over.”

While America did not rule the seas, Commander Barry did capture the first British ship in the American Revolutionary War.

In Annapolis, Maryland, the Commodore John Barry historical marker reads, “During the Revolution – On March 14, 1776, Barry accepted a captain’s commission in the Continental Navy and command of the brig, Lexington. He won one of our first victories at sea on April 7, 1776, by capturing the English tender, Edward. In all, Barry captured twenty English ships, generating over $3 million at auction for the Continental Congress. Commanding the Alliance in May, 1781, though seriously wounded and weakened by profuse loss of blood, Barry returned to deck to rally his sailors to victory by capturing two English ships near Nova Scotia. In March, 1783, Barry won the last sea battle of the war near Cape Canaveral, Florida.”

John and Jan Gillespie are the founders of the Rawhide Boys’ Ranch; they have fostered 351 teenagers and wrote the book Our 351 Sons; they have also assisted numerous churches in developing youth programs and expanding their total church ministries. After running for U.S. Senate, John founded 1776 American Dream, which exists to demonstrate the vision of our founding fathers and help our generation of youth passionately embrace those values.

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