The capture of HMS Macedonian
was a naval action fought near Madeira
on 25 October 1812 between the frigates
, commanded by Stephen Decatur
, and , under the command of John Surnam Carden
. The American vessel won the battle, and the Macedonian
The United States
declared war on the United Kingdom
on 18 June 1812. United States
, the frigate , and the brig
joined Commodore John Rodgers
' squadron at New York City
and put to sea immediately, cruising off the east coast until the end of August. The squadron again sailed on 8 October 1812, this time from Boston. Three days later, after capturing Mandarin
, the United States
parted company and continued to cruise eastward.
At dawn, on 25 October, five hundred miles south of the Azores
, lookouts on board United States
reported seeing a sail to windward. As the ship rose over the horizon, Captain Decatur made out the fine, familiar lines of HMS Macedonian
Both ships were immediately cleared for action and commenced maneuvers at 0900. Captain Carden elected not to risk crossing the bows of United States
to rake her, but chose instead to haul closer to the wind on a parallel course with the American vessel. For his part, Decatur intended to engage Macedonian
from fairly long range, where his 24 pounders (11 kg) would have the advantage over the 18 pounders (8 kg) of the British, and then move in for the kill.
The actual battle developed according to Decatur's plan.......