Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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BROKE, Sir Philip Bowes Vere, British naval officer, born at Broke Hall, near Ipswich, England, 9 September, 1776; died in London, 2 January, 1841. He was bred to the sea from the age of twelve, promoted captain in 1801, placed in command of the frigate "Shannon" in 1806, and sailed for Halifax in August, 1811. On 1 June, 1818, while the "Shannon" was cruising off Boston, the American frigate "Chesapeake," ranging alongside at a distance of fifty yards, received a broadside which struck down Capt. Lawrence and more than a hundred men. The Americans returned the fire, but their execution fell far short of that of the British seamen, trained in Broke's novel system of gunnery drill. A second broadside from the "Shannon" was as effective as the first, and Broke, at the head of fifty or sixty men, boarded the American and succeeded in driving the survivors of the crew below, but was himself disabled for life by a blow on the head from a musket-stock. See Brighton's "Memoir of Admiral Sir P. B. V. Broke," and Roosevelt's "Naval War of 1812."
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