Cool flag, Isaiah
In the category of “You learn something new every day,” Rep. Dan Burton of Indiana educates us today on “an often overlooked chapter in American history.”
It surrounds the tiny island of St. Eustatius, or “Statia,” part of the Leeward Islands of the Caribbean. During November way back in 1776, the USS Andrew Doria, under the command of Captain Isaiah Robinson and in need of supplies and munitions, sailed into the harbor of Statia, then a Dutch colony. The brigantine fired off a 13-gun salute, and those manning Statia’s cannons, under the command of Gov. Johannes de Graaff, answered with an 11-gun volley.
“This volley is regarded as the first salute to an American flag on board an American warship in a foreign port. Or, more simply put, the first recognition of America’s newly declared independence from Great Britain by a foreign power,” notes Mr. Burton, the ranking Republican on the subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere.