My passion for family history started as a teenager. By Joining Indiana Society Sons of American Revolution, I was able to obtain more information. The benefits of belonging to the organization included the ability to preserve my family history in an acid free storage system that will be available for future generations. One of my biggest areas of focus is researching my revolutionary ancestor Nathan Salisbury and his alleged in involvement with the Gaspee.

Setting the Record Straight About Nathan Salisbury

After going through some of my files I've determined that this will be my best way to correct a major historical error.

The letter that James Henry wrote to Stephen contains the problem.

James and his brother Charles were pre-teens when they would listen to Grandma Abigail tell them the story of their Grandfather Nathan (he died before they were born) and they were both very excited about his cannon attack on a frigate run-aground in Warwick neck. This became the game that the boys would play, building forts and using sticks and boards in mock battles. When James became a young man he searched volumes of books looking for "the rest of the story" I think James Fennimore Cooper's book influenced his thinking. The only ship run-a-ground in Cooper's book is the schooner Gaspee, and it is at Namquit point, not Warwick Neck. The attack at Warwick Neck is not included in his publication.

James Henry Salisbury decided that some perceived errors in the history of the Gaspee needed to be corrected and he started a campaign to include the cannon attack and the "Frigate Gaspee". This resulted in several major and minor publication inclusions and even a new tombstone for Nathan that includes the firing of a cannon on the Gaspee. Other inclusions are in family history books.

At the time I read the information on Nathan (my 4 great Grand Father) I had never heard of the Gaspee but decided to read everything on the subject I could and eventually started to do a first person character at historical societies and schools. My program did not include the cannon attack. That was over ten years ago so I have done a bunch of programs.

Recently while doing some additional research I discovered that Nathan was not at the attack on the Gaspee in 1772 at Namquit Point but the attack on the Frigate Diamond in 1777. What's five years and five miles among friends? I've also determined that the Capt Burgess that James Henry mentions is Capt. Cary Briggs (so much for cursive notes).