1773–1843, American naval officer, b. Derby, Conn. He served in the undeclared naval war with France (1798–1800) and in the Tripolitan War before being promoted to captain in 1806. In 1810 he was given command of the Constitution.
Early in the War of 1812 he slipped his ship out of Chesapeake Bay and, evading seven enemy ships, succeeded in making his way through the British blockade to Boston Harbor. On Aug. 19, 1812, the Constitution
met the Guerrière
in one of America's great sea battles. Hull's superior seamanship forced the British vessel to surrender.
See his papers, ed. by G. W. Allen (1929); biographies by B. Grant (1947) and L. T. Molloy (1964).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: U.S. History: Biographies