Abstract

Captain Robert Niles (1734–1818) commanded the schooner, Spy, in the Connecticut state navy during the American Revolution. He gathered intelligence, protecting his state's coast, transported supplies, and traded for contraband in the West Indies. In 1778 Niles sailed Spy to France, delivering a copy of the American-ratified Franco-American Treaty. After the war, he continued maritime pursuits, went bankrupt, endured family tragedies, yet remained active in civic and religious affairs.

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