In 1804 George Bowen completes his seven-year apprenticeship in the merchant marine and becomes 2nd mate of a privateer. After exploits which include defeating French privateers and a French frigate, he is put in command. In mid-Atlantic lightning sets his ship on fire, and he and a few shipmates survive days in an open boat before being picked up by a rascally French pirate. Bowen and his men capture the pirate and sail to Jamaica where he is first with the news that Villeneuve's fleet is in the West Indies. Following a successful mission for the Navy he captures a Spanish galleon laden with 20 tons of gold and a large box of gems. His sagacity, skill, and daring are recognised by the admiral, who commissions him as lieutenant in the Royal Navy.
Author: Harry Collingwood
Title: The Log of a Privateersman
First Published by: C. Scribner's Sons