The Battle of Flamborough Head was a naval battle that took place on 23 September 1779 in the North Sea off the coast of Yorkshire between a combined Franco-American squadron, led by Continental Navy officer John Paul Jones, and two British escort vessels protecting a large merchant convoy. It became one of the most celebrated naval actions of the war, despite its relatively small size and considerable dispute over what had actually occurred.
During September 1779, the four remaining vessels from a seven-strong squadron, which had departed from the anchorage at Groix off L’Orient in France on 14 August 1779, nominally under the command of American Continental Navy captain John Paul Jones, voyaged from a brief stop off Ireland, round the north of Scotland, and down the east coast of Britain, creating havoc wherever possible. Although sailing under the American flag, all the vessels were loaned or donated by France, with French captains, except for the Alliance, which had been built in Amesbury, Massachusetts specifically for the Continental Navy . The crews included Americans, French volunteers, British sailors previously captured by the Americans and offered the chance to get out of captivity, and many others seeking glory or prize money.
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