The New International Encyclopædia/Paulding, Hiram
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PAUL'DING, Hiram (1797-1878). An American naval officer. He was born in New York City, entered the United States Navy as a midshipman iu 1811, participated in the battle of Lake Champlain (September 11, 1814), receiving a vote of thanks and a sword from Congress for his services, served under Commodore Decatur against the Barbary Powers in 1815, and in the following year was promoted to a lieutenancy. He accompanied Commodore Porter on an expedition against the West Indian pirates in 1822-23, acting as first lieutenant of the Sea Gull, said to have been the first steamer ever used for purposes of war; served on the Dolphin in 1826 when that vessel was sent to the Mulgrave Islands in search of the mutineers of the American whale ship Globe; cruised in the East Indies, in command of the Vincennes, from 1844 to 1847; was in command of the Washington Navy Yard from 1851 to 1854; and from 1854 to 1857 was commander of the home squadron, at the time the highest position in the navy. For arresting the filibuster Walker (see Walker, William) at Greytown, Nicaragua, in December, 1857, he was relieved from command by President Buchanan, though the Republic of Nicaragua, in recognition of his services, presented him with a sword and a large tract of valuable land, which latter Congress did not allow him to accept. On the outbreak of the Civil War he was ordered to Washington to assist Secretary Welles of the Navy Department, and in April, 1861, proceeded to Norfolk and destroyed the navy yard there. Having passed the age limit of sixty-two years, he was technically retired in December, 1861. In the following year he was promoted to the recently created grade of rear-admiral, on the retired list, and subsequently was commandant of the New York Navy Yard from 1862 to 1866, in which position he rendered important services to the Government by sending many vessels and thousands of men to the front; was Governor of the Naval Asylum in Philadelphia from 1866 to 1869, and was port admiral at Boston from 1870 to 1871. He published a Journal of a Cruise Among the Islands of the Pacific (1831). Consult a biographical sketch by Meade in Harper's New Monthly Magazine, vol. lviii. (New York, 1879).