exchange of a few shots, the schooner sheered off. On the 2d, at 5 a.m., it still being calm, the Atalante again swept up, and, on reaching her opponent, grappled her on the starboard side. The privateer then poured in a broadside, and attempted, under, cover of the smoke, to carry the Antelope by boarding ; but the crew of the latter drove back the assailants with great slaughter.
Among the sufferers by the privateer's broadside, was the packet's commander, Mr. Curtis, who fell to rise no more; as did also the steward, and a French gentleman, a passenger. The first mate, too, was shot through the body, but survived. The second mate having died of the fever soon after the packet had sailed from Port-Royal, the command now devolved upon Mr. Pasco, the boatswain, who, with the few brave men left, assisted by the passengers, repulsed repeated attempts to board, made, at intervals, during the long period that the vessels remained lashed together. At last, the privateersmen, finding they had caught a tartar, cut the grapplings, and attempted to sheer off. The boatswain, observing this, ran aloft, and lashed the schooner's square-sail yard to the Antelope's fore shrouds. Immediately a well-directed volley of small arms was poured into the privateer, and the crew called for quarter. This, notwithstanding the Atalante had fought with the red or bloody flag at her mast-head, to indicate that no quarter would be shown by her, was granted, and possession was forthwith taken of the prize.
The Antelope mounted six 3-pounders, and had sailed with 27 hands; but she had lost four by the fever, and two were ill in their hammocks, consequently the packet commenced the action with only 21 men, exclusive of the passengers. Her total loss in the action was three killed, and four wounded. The Atalante mounted eight 3-pounders ; and her complement was 65 men, composed of French, Americans, and Irish. Of these the first and second captains and 30 men were killed, † and 17 officers and men wounded. The Atalante had been fitted out at Charleston, in the United States. The Antelope now carried her prize in triumph to Annotta Bay, Jamaica; where the two vessels arrived on the morning succeeding the action.
The unparalleled bravery of one of the Antelope's passengers, a M. Nodin, formerly a midshipman in the French navy, deserves to be recorded. It is related of this young man, that he stood by the helm and worked the ship, armed with a musket and a pike, which he alternately made use of: that, when he perceived the Atalante's men climbing the quarters of the Antelope, he quitted the helm, and with the pike despatched such as
† The number of dead lying on the deck, when the schooner was taken possession of, amounted to 20. It is probable that none had, as conjectured, been thrown overboard : hence, admitting 16 to have been, as is stated, the number of privateersmen found unhurt, the schooner's complement, on commencing the action, would be 12 fewer than appears in the text.
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