Nominal Guns16DANFS
NationalityUnited States of America
OperatorUnited States Navy
Keel Laid Down12.5.1803DANFS
Home Port DANFS
ShipyardCharlestown Navy Yard - Charlestown DANFS
Constructor Edmund HarttDANFS
Ship TypeSloop DANFS
Sailing RigBrigDANFS


DimensionMeasurementTypeMetric EquivalentDANFS
Length of Gundeck94' 6"US Feet28.6893 
Breadth28' 2"US Feet8.5408 
Depth in Hold12' 8"US Feet3.7592 
Burthen299Tons BM 


1803Broadside Weight = 204 Imperial Pound ( 92.514 kg)DANFS
Gun Deck16 American 24-Pound Carronade
Gun Deck2 American 12-Pounder

14.8.1803Broadside Weight = 228 Imperial Pound ( 103.398 kg)B044
Gun Deck18 American 24-Pound Carronade
Gun Deck2 American 12-Pounder

Crew Complement

Date# of MenNotesSource
1803142 DANFS
14.8.1813102 NW1812

4 Ship Commanders

8.1803 - 9.1803Lieutenant Stephen Decatur (1779-1820)DANFS11.1803 - 1803Lieutenant Isaac Hull (d.1843)DANFS1812 - 24.7.1813Master Commandant Arthur Sinclair (d.1831)B04424.7.1813 - 14.8.1813Master Commandant William Henry Allen (d.1813)DANFS

4 Commissioned Officers

21.8.1803 - 1803Lieutenant Joshua BlakeB05218.5.1804 - 9.7.1807Lieutenant Sybrant van SchaickB05224.7.1813 - 14.8.1813First Lieutenant William H Watson (d.1823)B04424.7.1813 - 14.8.1813Second Lieutenant William Howard Allen (1790-1822)B044

5 Warrant Officers

1803 - 1804Surgeon's Mate John W DorseyB0521803 - 1804Boatswain George NicholsonB0521803 - 1804Purser Timothy WinnB0521803 - 1804Surgeon Nathaniel WeemsB0528.1803 - 1803Master Samuel B BrooksB052

5 Petty Officers

8.1803 - 1803Midshipman Samuel G Blodget (d.1812)B0528.1803 - 1803Midshipman George MannB0528.1803 - 1803Midshipman Pascal Paoli PeckB0528.1803 - 1803Midshipman John Pettigrew (d.1820)B0528.1803 - 1803Midshipman William G StewartB052

1 Marine

1803 - 1804Marine Lieutenant John JohnsonB052

Service History

12.5.1803Laid down as MerrimackDANFS
4.6.1803Renamed ArgusDANFS
8.9.1803Sailed from BostonDANFS
18.9.1803Put into Newport RIDANFS
28.9.1803Left Newport bound for the MediterraneanDANFS
1.11.1803Arrived in GibraltarDANFS
1804Cruised the western MediterraneanDANFS
3.1804Ordered to join the rest of Commodore Preble's squadron off TripoliB052
30.4.1804Took a small sloop prizeDANFS
6.1804Went to Syracuse to escort a supply vessel back to TripoliB052
19.6.1804Arrived off Tripoli in company with the Constitution and EnterpriseDANFS
7.7.1804Resumed blockade off TripoliDANFS
9.8.1804Approached Tripoli on a reconnaisance mission with Commodore Preble on board, was hit below the waterline by a singleDANFS
4.9.1804Part of the escort for the fire ship Intrepid's attack on TripoliDANFS
1805Returned to the United StatesDANFS
27.4.1805Participated in the attack on DernaDANFS
5.1805Took part in a series of defensive actions in a shore bombardment roleDANFS
11.6.1805Left DernaDANFS
13.7.1805Arrived at the Washington Navy Yard and laid up in ordinaryDANFS
1807Refitted and recommissioned she began cruising on the Atlantic coast until 1813DANFS
8.10.1812Left New York in company with the President, United States and CongressB052
12.10.1812Left the three frigates for a solo cruise, taking 6 prizesB052
3.1.1813Returned to portB052
6.1813Took a single prize on the journeyB052
18.6.1813Left New York bearing the honorable William H. Crawford, the United States minister to FranceDANFS
7.1813Cruised the English Channel and Irish SeaB052
11.7.1813Arrived in L'OrientDANFS
14.7.1813Put to seaDANFS
14.8.1813Encountered and taken by the British brig Pelican after a brief engagementB052
14.8.1813Argus vs Pelican
14.8.1813Taken by Pelican (16)


DatesFleetFleet CommanderSource
1803-1804American Mediterranean Squadron 1803-1804 Edward Preble (1761-1807) 
1804-1805American Mediterranean Squadron 1804-1805 Samuel Barron (d.1810) 
1805-1806American Mediterranean Squadron 1805-1806 John Rodgers (d.1838) 

Notes on Ship

Building costB052
The cost of building the Argus was $37,428


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