About the Ship
Lynx, “America’s privateer,” is a reproduction of the Baltimore Clippers that helped America defeat the British in the War of 1812. She is an interpretation of an actual privateer named Lynx, built in Fells Point in Baltimore. The original Lynx was captured early in the war, but served as an inspiration to the Baltimore-based privateers that succeeded her. The Lynx Educational Foundation holds a copy of the original letter of marque issued to Lynx‘s captain, E. Taylor, from
President James Madison.
Baltimore Clippers, very fast and maneuverable, were the vessels of choice for privateers. Privateers, commissioned by the wartime government, plied Britain’s home waters, the Atlantic and the Caribbean attacking British ships for profit. They were very successful at running the British blockades and harassing the British merchant convoys. Nearly a third of all of the commissions issued to privateers during the War of 1812 went to vessels operating out of Baltimore. Those Baltimore privateers captured more than a third of the total British prizes. Their successes made the shipyards that built them targets of the Royal Navy. The British attack of Baltimore in 1814 was, in part, a plan to get to and destroy the shipyards in Fells Point.
The present-day Lynx flies pennants and flags from the 1812 era and is fitted with period ordnance. She is armed with a functioning main battery of four six-pounder carronades and four swivel guns. She also carries a complementary stand of historic small arms for demonstration and instructional purposes, including muskets, pistols, cutlasses, boarding pikes and axes. The historic integrity is further maintained by the permanent crew wearing uniforms and operating the ship in keeping with the maritime traditions of early 19th-century America.
Home port: Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Sparred length: 122’
Rig height: 94′
Number of sails: 10
Sail area: 4,669 square feet
Auxiliary power: 290 hp Cat 3306B
Speed under power: 7 knots
Speed under sail: 14.5 knots
Working crew: 9
2 – Lynx departing from Star-Spangled Sailabration in Baltimore on June 19, 2012. Photo by Michael Gallagher.
3 – Blue Angels flying over Lynx on June 16, 2012, during Star-Spangled Sailabration in Baltimore. Photo by Raymond Shipley.
4 – Lynx sailing off Great Point, Nantucket, Massachusetts. Photo by Donald Peacock.