• USS Constellation, Vandalia, American Battle Ships: Physician Complimented For Service

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    U.S.S. Constellation, Pensacola [FL], January 18th, 1837, to Dr. Havler of the U.S.S. Vandalia. The writer of the letter may be L. O’Brien, though his signature is a bit difficult to discern.


    “I understand that the Vandalia sails tomorrow. We may not again meet for years to come. I feel it my duty & I take much pleasure in seizing the occasion to give you an expression of my opinion of your conduct as assistant surgeon during the period we had the opportunity of serving together (nor for the last time I hope).


    “I can with much truth say that in your public & private relation to myself that it was all I could have desired you performed your own duties frequently...with...talent & constancy.  You attained the respect & confidence of officers & such.  Your temper under all circumstances was regulated by reason, courtesy & a just idea of what was due to yourself & others. I know...that you must always possess the confidence of the Navy...Permit me most sincerely to pray for your happiness & prosperity, privately & publicly...


    The USS Constellation was a 38-gun wooden-hulled, three-masted frigate of the U.S. Navy.  It was launched on September 7, 1797, being one of the original six frigates whose construction  was authorized under the Naval Act of 1794.  The Constellation’s first duties were to provide protection for American merchant shipping during the Quasi-War with France and to defeat the Barbary pirates and First Barbary War.


    The Vandalia was an 18-gun sloop-of-war in the Navy during the Second Seminole War and the Civil War.


    The letter is in very good condition with folds, light toning, minor chipping in left margin, not affecting writing.


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