Privateer Brig Rover - 1800 to 1804

She was the most famous privateer from Nova Scotia in the Napoleonic Wars. Under Alex Godfrey she fought two remarkable battles against strong odds. In one case, Rover single handedly attacked a French convoy of seven ships dispersing them and capturing three. In another, she beat three Spanish warships in a gunnery duel and boarding off the coast of Venezuela. These battles won praise in Britain from the distinquished magazine The Naval Chronicle and Godfrey was offered a Royal Navy commission, which he declined. Later cruises proved less rewarding. A subsequent captain, Benjamin Collins lost his commission and landed Rover's owners in trouble for several illegal captures. After French shipping vanished and prizes disappeared, she was converted to an armed merchant ship under Halifax owners.

The Ballad of the Rover a song by Archibald MacMechan celebrating her famous victory.

Crew: 60
Rig: Brig
Tonnage: 100
Armament: 16 guns (four pounders)
Built: Liverpool, NS April, 1800. Builder: Snow Parker
Homeport: Liverpool, Nova Scotia
Letter of Marque Issued: May 20. 1800
Captain: 1800-1801 Alex Godfrey, 1801 Joseph Barss Jnr., 1803 Benjamin Collins
Prizes Taken: 8
Owners: Simeon Perkins, Snow Parker, William Lawson Sources:: "A Private War in the Caribbean" by Dan Conlin, also Simeon Perkins Diary, Vol. IV.

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Copyright Dan Conlin 1998
Last Modified Dec. 17, 1999