IN PURSUIT OF THE ESSEX Heroism and Hubris on the High Seas in the War of 1812

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On 26 October 1812, during the war between Britain and the United States, the frigate USS Essex set sail on the most remarkable voyage in the early history of the US navy. After rounding Cape Horn, she proceeded to systematically destroy the British South Seas whaling fleet. When news reached the Royal Navy’s South American station at Rio de Janeiro, HMS Phoebe was sent off in pursuit. So began one of the most extraordinary chases in naval history.

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