Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    1781 Revolutionary War Manuscript About Capture of An American Ship. Three pages, 6.25" x 7.5", Boston, Massachusetts, November 7, 1781. This manuscript attests that the British have seized an American ship, written on fine quality, watermarked, laid paper. It is the sworn testimony of Capt. James McGee, "late master of the Brig. Amsterdam" and reads in part: "By this Public Instrument of Protest Be it Known & made Manifest that on the Seventh day of November in the Year of our Lord One Thousand seven hundred and Eighty one personally appeared before me Ezekiel Price Notary Public by legal Authority Admitted & Sworn, Dwelling and Practicing in Boston Aforesaid James McGee Late Master of the Brig Amsterdam who Manifested & Declared upon Oath that on the twenty fifth day of August last he sailed in & with said Brig laded with Dry Good, Iron, Steel, Copper, Tea &c. bound on a voyage to Boston that in prosecution of said Voyage on the nineteenth day of October following being then that Lat. 42.46 North was Seized Taken and made Prize of by a British Ship of War named the Amphitite mounting twenty eight carriage guns, Commanded by Robert Biggs who afterwards took out of said Brig the Officers & Crew...Six of them and ordered them on Board the said Ship and carried them all into Baggaduce in Penobscot River Where they arrived the twenty first of October from whence they arrived at Boston yesterday in abated and now the Appearer desires a protest." With manuscript endorsement by the Consul General of France on the third page. In very fine condition. There is a reinforced tear along the left central edge with some minor paper loss affecting a few words, and usual folds are present. Otherwise, this historic document remains quite bright and bold in appearance with crisp, brown writing. An important, historical Naval document from the Revolutionary War!

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2006
    12th-13th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 447

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold on Oct 13, 2006 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 4 days left to consign to the 2021 September 26 Autumn Luxury Accessories Signature Auction !

    Learn about consigning with us

    We had a wonderful time in New York during the October 2013 Historical Manuscripts auction that featured my mother’s papers collected during her tenure as Martin Luther King, Jr.’s secretary. In fact, the entire experience from beginning to end has been a pleasure.
    Howard Ballou,
    Brandon, MS
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search