John Paul Jones Raid on Whitehaven 1778
Late at night on April 22nd 1778, the USS Ranger stood about 2 miles off the unsuspecting town of Whitehaven on a clear but cold and frosty night. Two boats were let down into the water and filled with about 30 men armed with pistols and cutlasses. John Paul Jones took charge of one with his Swedish second in command, one of the few he felt he could trust, Lieutenant Meijer. The other boat was commanded by Lieutenant Wallingford of the US marines and Midshipman Ben Hill. The two boats rowed against the tide for 3 hours to reach the harbour where Jones planned to destroy hundreds of ships by setting them alight as they lay stranded in the low water and packed tight together, several abreast, against the piers.
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