USS Lee II

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Lee II Gy

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Lee II
(Gy: t. 48; 1. 43'g"; b. 16'3"; dph. 4'8"; cpl. 86; a. 1
12-pdr., 1 9-pdr., 4 4-pdrs.)

The second Lee was a cutter galley built under direction of Gen. Benedict Arnold at Skenesboro, N.Y., in 1776 for service on Lake Champlain. Constructed of' timber, captured in October 1775 at St. Jean's, the British shipyard on the lake. Lee, commanded by a Captain Davis, joined Arnold's squadron 6 September 1776, the galley cutter operated on Lake Champlain for shortly over a month, ready to defend the inland waterpath which connected Canada and New York.

When the British moved south, the American flotilla met them in the Battle of' Valcour Island 11 October 1776. Lee ran aground and bilged, during the action in which the small American squadron was all but wiped out. However, while suffering a serious tactical defeat, General Arnold's ships won a great strategic victory by delaying for a year the British advance on New York, a year in which the patriots prepared for the new British offensive which ended with the capture of the British Army at Saratoga.