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IRIS (28) Built in 1776, Newburyport, Mass., as HANCOCK
Taken in 1777.
Taken by French 1781.
Destroyed as hulk in 1793.

  • On 7 June 1777 the American frigates HANCOCK (32) Capt. John MANLEY and BOSTON (26) Capt. Hector Mc NEIL, part of a squadron of 10 vessels which had been scattered by a storm, captured the British frigate FOX (28) Capt. Patrick FOTHERINGHAM, off the Newfoundland Banks. They took some prisoners on board and made sail for Boston. During 6 and 7 July they were chased by the British frigate RAINBOW (44) Capt. George COLLIER, which they mistook for a ship of the line, and the brig, VICTOR (18).
  • On the 8th. FLORA, (32) Capt. John BRISBANE, joined in the pursuit and the Americans separated, FLORA followed FOX and retook her, BOSTON escaped and HANCOCK was engaged by RAINBOW. The American struck when she was becalmed. HANCOCK was purchased for the Royal Navy as IRIS.
  • 1780 Capt. James HAWKER, West Indies.
  • On 6 June IRIS engaged the French frigate HERMIONE (32) Capt. de la TOUCHE, British losses were 7 killed and 9 wounded, the French 10 killed and 37 wounded. The action was broken off after 80 minutes when the French retired.
  • 1781 Capt. George DAWSON.
  • On 16 March IRIS was with Vice Ad. ARBUTHNOT's squadron in action with the French de Touches in the Chesapeake.
  • On 8 August he gave chase to the American frigate TRUMBULL (32) Capt. James NICHOLSON, off Delaware. The American was about 100 short of complement and the following day she lost her fore topmast and main top-gallant mast during a gale. She was in this crippled state when IRIS came up and although Capt. NICHOLSON and his Lieutenants MURRAY and DALE, with a few seamen, fought bravely, they were not supported by the rest of the crew who took shelter below. After an hour TRUMBULL was forced to surrender with 5 killed and 11 wounded. IRIS lost 1 killed and 6 wounded.
  • On 7 September IRIS and RICHMOND (32) Capt. Charles HUDSON, were compelled to strike when they were surprised by a French squadron in the Chesapeake while engaged in cutting away cables from French buoys.
  • During the evacuation of Toulon on 18 December 1793 the hulk of IRIS was among the many vessels destroyed.

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