Evidence given in Commodore Elliott's case.
Philadelphia 20th May '40.
The court was composed of the following officers.
. Jacob Jones, president.  Lewis Warrington.
Downes.  Edmund P. Kennedy.  Chas Morgan.
Parker.  David Connor. 
John Sloat & Geo Storer.


     I saw passed Midshipman [Charles C.] Barton brought on board the Constitution and was told that he had been wounded in a duel.  he was placed in a cot on the starboard side of the main deck between two guns.  I held his leg during a portion of the time that the Surgeon was performing the operation of extracting the ball.  Becoming fatigued I was relieved by Midn [John Newland] Maffitt.  Mr Barton appeared to suffer much pain, Shortly after he was sent to the Shark.  I did not see him again until he went on shore, when I called on him at his boarding house in Smyrna.....  There was a subscription taken up on board the Constitution for some plate.  the subscription was begun in [Port] Mahon, the plate purchased and brought on board at Lisbon.  it was placed on the berth deck that the crew might see it.  the inscription was nearly the same as you have read.  I saw the plate in the main deck cabin twice, once on the sideboard, once upon the table......  The animals were brought on board at Mahon and placed first amidships.  Lieutenant [Oscar] Bullus informed I had been ordered to take charge of the main deck by the Commodore, previously I had been his aid.  I requested to be relieved from the gun deck and to be put on watch.  The animals were removed to stalls between the guns. There were 23 in all.  Seven guns on the starboard side of the main deck and the same number on the larboard were disabled.  I left the deck and was placed upon watch.   This was the first afternoon out [on the way home in late June 1838].  To the best of my recollection the stalls were fastened to the trucks of the cannon, the upper part being attached to the beams overhead........  We arrived in Hampton Roads and anchored below fortress Monroe.  The boats were then hoisted out.  Shortly afterwards the animals were also hoisted out.  They were placed in the boats alongside and then landed at a small village abreast of the ship.  The stalls were then taken down.  About 5 [6?] ock pm the boats returned to the vessel.  Many of the men were very noisy and one of them was chasing the musicians about the decks.  I heard a noise on the berth deck which I understood to arise from the men assaulting the master at arms he took refuge in the wardroom.  The men were throwing the mess things about.  They were ordered up from below and went on the spar deck.  Toward night there was much fighting.  There were three men confined between the two forward carronades on the star[boar]d side of the quarter deck.  When the hammocks were piped down these men were released by the crew from under a sentinels charge and taken forward.   Later than this I observed a crowd of men rushing aft on the quarter deck in pursuit of a negro named Ennis they were trying to strike him over the head with a tub.  Midn Chas Wager, myself and another interfered and released him.  The man was then placed between the wheel, double ironed (This was to shield him from the fury of the crew) his head was cut and bleeding.  The uproar continued until near eleven ock.  The men when I interfered to save Ennis appeared to be forcing him down the hatchway while one was striking him.  This hatred of the black arose from his having sometimes previously cut one of the crew.


                        The deck was very black after the stalls were taken down, and was covered with a thick slimy filth.  The stalls were taken forward  Have no idea what became of them.  Shortly after the men were released I saw Commodore Elliott going forward accompanied by Lt Bullus.  Myself and another followed him.  We went on to the forecastle when Comm E stated to the crew that they had broken the regulations of the ship and that they must take the men back where they had found them.  he said to them that discipline must be preserved, that the ship should be taken up to Norfolk in the morning and they should be discharged, that should the wind prove unfortunate a steamer had been sent for to tow them up.  The prisoners that had been released by the crew were not taken back.  The crew retreated when the Commo first approached them.  the ship was noisy at the time. there were several replies to the Commodore of "no no"  They threatened Ennis.  a man by the name of Birch crying out "Kill the negro"  I do not remember the number of men employed at Mahon in taking charge of the animals, nor how long they were so employed.  There were 8 or 9 so occupied on board the frigate.  They were secured from watch but whether from quarters I cannot say.  Commander [William] Boerums speech to the men on the first of August was that the Commodore was pleased with the conduct of the crew, that they had done their duty and were at liberty to go on shore.


     By the Accused   Prior to the disturbance at Hampton, the men had done their duty.  I remained beside PM Barton during the dressing of his wound until I became fatigued.  his leg required to be held very firmly.  Mr B. had a very small room on shore, though I thought him very comfortably situated except as being left alone.  Consul [David] Offley is dead.  I do not know what his character for kindness to his own countrymen was.  I thought him rather a stern man.  I saw a subscription list for plate, but whether it was the first or second I do not know.  I think I saw but one.  Cannot say how many signatures it had.  I do not know the motives that induced the men to make the present to Commodore Elliott.  The Carpenter superintended the putting up of the stalls.  I do not remember the state of the tide when we arrived at Hampton.  The wind was fresh and fair.  The wind was not ahead when we anchored  nor do I know that it was so afterwards.  A large portion of the men were intoxicated how many I cannot say.  I do not know whether the three men confined between the guns on the quarter deck were intoxicated.  one of them had been very insolent to the boatswain.  When i say confined I mean that they were in irons.  I cannot say whether the men were or were not intoxicated at the time the Como was addressing them on the forecastle.  I did not hear them tell the Como that their times were out.  I did not see the Commodr & Lt Bullus in consultation after they had left the men.  I saw no personal violence towards the officers.  no orders were obeyed.  I considered that the crew had possession of the ship.  What I mean by the saying the crew had possession of the ship is that they did as they pleased and that there was an end to all subordination.  The marines were not turned out to restore order.  Why I do not know.  The times of many of them were out.  The following morning the men were more orderly.  When we anchored abreast the hospital and were furling sail they cheered on the yards without orders  The ship was got underweigh for Norfolk very well.  I dont know that a boat was sent for during the disorder at Hampton Roads, to set the men whose times had expired on shore.  I do not know what officers had charge of the men during the landing of the animals.  I remained on board 17 or 18 days after her arrival at Norfolk and until all the officers had left After the stalls were taken down the decks were washed.  The vessel was in as good order when handed over to Capt Zantinger as vessels usually are when turned in to the dock yard.  The guns looked badly


A verbatim transcript from Volume IV of the Midshipman Edward C. Anderson Papers in the Library of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  The ship was at Smyrna (Izmir), Turkey, during November 1835‑January 1836.  The incidents with the animals and crew occurred during June‑August 1838.