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Battle of Porto Praya 4.16.1781

Battle of Porto Praya

The connection between Cape Verde and the U.S goes back many years, but not many people know that the connection goes back to a time before what today are the United States of America existed.
One of the hundreds of battles that took place during the War for American independence, when 13 fledgling colonies were battling the mighty British empire for independence took place in the waters surrounding Cape Verde Islands.

On April 16th, 1781 a British Naval squadron under the command of Commodore George Johnstone stopped over in Porto Praya (now Praia), Cape Verde on the way to the Cape of Good hope to attack and take it away from under Dutch control came under attack by a French Naval squadron under command of the French Admiral Bailli de Suffren that was headed towards the Cape of Good Hope to assist the Dutch in the defense of the colony against the British.

The French surprised the British and they were able to come out victorious. The British had 183 casualties of which, 36 were killed and 147 wounded.

This naval encounter became known as the Battle of Porto Praya.