(1728–85) Revolutionary naval officer, born in County Antrim, Ireland. McNeill commanded the Continental frigate Boston and his rivalry with John Manley resulted in the American squadron being routed in an encounter with the British (1777). Although the Boston escaped (the Hancock, Manley's ship, was lost), McNeill, in fear of the British fleet, went into hiding for a month before returning home. Both captains were court-martialed, but only McNeill was found guilty and dismissed from the service (1778).
From The Oxford Essential Dictionary of the U.S. Military in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Warfare and Defence.