Abel Gore, Master’s Mate

Abel Gore. Abel Gore born 12 November 1749 in Norwich, CT is likely the Able Gore listed in the account book of the Confederacy. His location in the list and experience indicates he served as Master’s Mate. Abel Gore was the son of Desire Burris of Groton, CT and Moses Gore, first cousin of John Gore who was the father of MA Governor Christopher Gore. Born in Roxbury, MA, Moses Gore moved first to Groton with his family where he married Burris in 1740, afterwards residing in Preston and Norwich before moving to Cornwallis, Kings County, Nova Scotia. Abel Gore’s sisters were Mrs. Starr, Mrs. DeWolfe, Desire Ratchford, Mercy Bishop and Mercy Newcombe. Abel Gore is reputed to have had a brother in Holland named Asaph Gore. Early in the war beginning on 7 August 1778, Abel Gore commanded the MA privateer schooner Little Weasel of 4 guns and 10 swivels with a compliment of 20 men. Shipowners were Mungo Mackey and William Shattuck who were also the bonders with Abel Gore. On 26 April 1779, Abel Gore was appointed captain of the MA privateer schooner Resolution. Along with Gore, the bonders were Daniel Martin and owner Thomas Adams. Adams resided in Boston and Philadelphia and owned privateers registered in both states, as well as, Connecticut. The Resolution sailing out of Boston was captured by HMS Blond previous to 11 May 1779 about “seven leagues to the westward of Halifax lighthouse.” Interestingly several years later, Resolution owner Thomas Adams would offer Captain Seth Harding command of his privateer brigantine Diana on 29 October 1782 after the loss of the Confederacy, in which Harding was captured by a British man-of-war and taken prisoner to Jamaica. From New London court records relating to civil assault prosecutions instituted by mariners beaten by masters on the high seas, we know that Abel Gore served brothers Beebe and Frederick Denison of Stonington on the sloop Unity under Stephen Martin sometime prior to June 1782 and probably subsequent to his capture on the Confederacy in April 1781 and release in August 1781. Apparently, for a number of years after the war, Abel Gore of Groton sailed regularly out of New London, CT where letters awaited him at the Post Office in April 1786, October 1787, July 1791 and January 1793. He appears to be associated with the schooner Nancy lying at Groton Ferry and sailing for the Bay of Fundy under the command of Robert Scott according to a newspaper advertisement of April 1791. He is also listed as a passenger arriving to New London on a packet schooner from Nova Scotia on 17 August 1795. Abel Gore was the second of five husbands of Elizabeth Experience Smith (1758-1841). Her other husbands were Patrick Ward, David Foster, Abraham Trites and Ralph Siddall. According to family history, Gore’s family originally came from County Mayo in Ireland. It is said he fathered three children; Abel Gore Jr., Deborah Gore who married Lewis Trites and Pollisene Gore. The youngest daughter, who married a Trueman, was born in Gratton Heights, NY in July 1788. Abel Gore is noted in several sources as having died in New Brunswick, Canada, however appears to have “wrecked at sea” in 1798.

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