Commanded Essex, first USN warship into the Indian Ocean. Commanded the squadron of ships in the Mediterranean during the Barbary Wars against North African states providing the first effective counterforce to the Barbary corsairs and instilling a sense of proactive leadership in our Navy's role in national security. Most of the great naval heroes on the War of 1812 served under him during the Barbary Wars and he was their inspirational role model.
Captain Stephen Decatur, Jr.
During the Barbary Wars, converted a Tripolitanian boat, called it Intrepid, sailed it from Sicily to Libya, entered the fortified harbor of Tripoli, went alongside and boarded the previously captured American frigate Philadelphia, blew it up at the pier while escaping without a major casualty. During the War of 1812, was Commanding Officer United States, captured the British frigate Macedonian. After the War of 1812 his Mediterranean Squadron extracted a treaty of peace and amity with the Dey of Algiers that guaranteed ship passage without payment of tribute.