United States Privateer Snapdragon


On three cruises during the war of 1812, the American privateer, Snapdragon, under the command of Captain Otway Burns captured 42 English vessels valued at more than $4,000,000. In the process, he captured more than 300 English officers and sailors. Captain Burns bravely engaged and gave successful battle to several Royal Navy warships compiling a record of astounding audacity and brilliant success that has few parallels in naval history. In his honor, the United States Navy has named two destroyers U.S.S. Burns in recognition of the devastation he imposed upon enemy merchant shipping through his unsurpassed leadership and patriotic service to our country.

Type American topsail schooner
Launched West River, Maryland in 1808
Home port Beaufort, North Carolina
Length 89′ 4.5″
Beam 24′ 9″
Draft 7′ 11″
Displacement 147 tons
Armament Five 12-pound carronades
One 18-pound long Tom pivot gun
Crew 100 officers and men

Captain Otway Burns