(1759–1818) Revolutionary War naval officer, born in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1794 President George Washington nominated him one of six captains in the new navy. Disappointed at being ranked only third, Barney declined the nomination and instead accepted a commission in the French navy. He returned to the United States in 1802. Early in the War of 1812, on a ninety–day privateer cruise, he captured four ships, eight brigs, three schooners, and three sloops valued at over $1.5 million. He defended the Chesapeake Bay area, then joined the ill-fated defense of Washington, D.C., at the Battle of Bladensburg (1814).
From The Oxford Essential Dictionary of the U.S. Military in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Warfare and Defence.