Morris, Richard Valentine, 1768–1815, American naval officer, b. Morrisania, N.Y. (now part of the Bronx); son of Lewis Morris (1726–98). After the American Revolution he entered the navy and was commissioned captain in 1798. As commander of a squadron in 1802, he was sent to the Mediterranean to undertake negotiations with Tripoli and the other Barbary States to end the Tripolitan War. Unsuccessful in concluding peace with Tripoli and unfortunate in dealing with the other powers, Morris was relieved of his command (1803), and his commission was revoked. His pamphlet, A Defense of the Conduct of Commodore Morris during His Command in the Mediterranean (1804), is valuable for its official documents on the negotiations.
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