(1745?–1803) ship captain and Revolutionary War naval hero, born in County Wexford, Ireland. Barry is considered the patriarch of the American navy. He was appointed the senior captain of the U.S. Navy when it was created by Congress in 1794. In the Americans' first naval victory in the Revolutionary War, Barry, captain of the brig Lexington, captured the British sloop Edward near the Virginia Capes (1776). Congress awarded him command of its finest vessel, Alliance (1780), which he used to capture many British ships. During the Quasi-War with France (1798) he commanded the frigate United States, flagship of the West Indies squadron.
From The Oxford Essential Dictionary of the U.S. Military in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Warfare and Defence.