USS Independence (1776 sloop)
|Namesake:||Freedom from control by others; self-government|
|Builder:||built in Baltimore, Maryland|
|Laid down:||date unknown|
|Acquired:||by the Marine Committee|
|In service:||circa September 1776|
|Out of service:||24 April 1778 (wrecked)|
|received salutes to the new American Republic from a foreign nation|
|Fate:||wrecked on the bar 24 April 1778 while attempting to enter Okracoke Inlet, North Carolina|
USS Independence (1776 sloop) was a sloop in the Continental Navy. Acting as a dispatch boat, she was sent to France on a diplomatic mission – carrying important dispatches. While there, John Paul Jones embarked on her, and she received additional salutes to the American Republic from the French.
In mid-1777 she sailed for France, arriving at Lorient in late September with important diplomatic dispatches. She captured two prizes en route and disposed of these in France before the Royal Navy could interfere.
She was in Quiberon Bay 14 February 1778 when John Paul Jones in Ranger received the first national salute to the flag—the first official recognition of the American Republic by a foreign power. The following morning, Jones embarked in Independence and again exchanged salutes.