Captain James Lawrence Returns To Kearny Cottage

Don’t Give up the Shipu ! Don Katz and Jeffrey Macechak as Captain James Lawrence. *Photo by Sue Tisaker

By Vilma Novak —

PERTH AMBOY — The Raritan Millstone Heritage Alliance, in their ongoing effort to promote historic Perth Amboy, presented a program for the 200th Anniversery of the War of 1812 at the Armory Restaurant on Sunday, June 11, 2012. Jeffrey Macechak, a Captain James Lawrence re-enactor, from the Burlington Historic Society, spoke about Captain Lawrence’s role in the war. Captain Lawrence was in command of the frigate Chesapeake, which was engaged in battle with the British ship, Shannon, he was mortally wounded. While being carried below deck he ordered “Don’t give up the ship”.

Jeffrey Macechak as Captain James Lawrence, Anton Massopust III and John Solowinski. *Photo by Vilma Novak

“Don’t give up the ship” became the battle cry of the fleet. Five ships were named in his honor: U.S Brig Lawrence, 1813-1825; U.S. Brig Lawrence, 1843-1846; USS Lawrence, Destroyer #8; USS Lawrence,DD-250 and USS Lawrence, DDG-4.

Captain James Lawrence lived, for a time at the Kearny Cottage, cared for by his half-sister Elizabeth Lawrence Kearny, mother of Commodore Lawrence Kearny, and her husband Michael.


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