USS Madison (1812)

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Name: Madison
Namesake: President James Madison
Builder: Sackets Harbor yard of Henry Eckford
Launched: 26 November 1812
Decommissioned: ca. 1815
Fate: Sold 1825[1]
General characteristics
Type: Corvette
Displacement: 503 tons[2]
Length: 112 ft 0 in (34.14 m)
Beam: 32 ft 6 in (9.91 m)
Sail plan: schooner-rigged
Complement: 200 officers and enlisted men
Armament: 14 × long 18–pounder guns
8 × 32-pounder carronades[3]

USS Madison was a U.S. Navy corvette (or sloop) built during the War of 1812 for use on the Great Lakes.

USS Madison was built at Sackets Harbor, New York by Henry Eckford. She was launched on Lake Ontario on 26 November 1812, Lieutenant Jesse D. Elliot in command. She was the first U.S. corvette launched on the lake.

Madison departed Sackets Harbor on 25 April 1813 as flagship of Commodore Isaac Chauncey. She saw active duty in the War of 1812 as part of Chauncey’s Lake Ontario Squadron. Madison participated in the capture of York, now Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in April 1813; the attacks on Fort George in May 1813; and engagements with British squadrons on Lake Ontario from 7–11 August 1813, and from 11–22 September 1813.

After the end of the war, Madison, a fast ship-rigged vessel that was not considered very safe to operate, was laid up at Sackets Harbor until sold in 1825. [1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Chapelle, p. 546, says that she was scrapped prior to 1824.
  2. Per DANFS, but Chapelle, p. 248, says she displaced 593 tons
  3. Chappelle, p. 546, claims the carronades were aboard by 1817


This article includes text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.

  • Chapelle, Howard I. The History of the American Sailing Navy: The Ships and Their Development. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1949. ISBN 1568522223.
  • Jampoler, Andrew C. A. "Who Was Henry Eckford?" Naval History, December 2007, Pages 38-45.