David Glasgow Farragut (July 5, 1801 – August 14, 1870) was a flag officer of the United States Navy during the American Civil War. He was the first rear admiral, vice admiral, and admiral in the United States Navy. He is remembered in popular culture for his order at the Battle of Mobile Bay, usually paraphrased: "Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!" by U.S. Navy tradition.
Farragut was born in 1801 to Elizabeth Shine (b. 1765 – d. 1808), of North Carolina Scots-Irish descent, and her husband George Farragut, a native of Minorca, Spain, at Lowe's Ferry on the Holston River. It was a few miles southeast of Campbell's Station, near Knoxville, Tennessee. His father operated the ferry and also served as a cavalry officer in the Tennessee militia. Born Jordi Farragut, son of Antoni Farragut and Joana Mesquida, his father became a Spanish merchant captain from Minorca. He had joined the American Revolutionary cause after arriving in America in 1766, when he changed his first name to George. His father was a naval lieutenant during the Revolutioary War, serving first with the South Carolina Navy then the Continental Naval forces. The Farraguts moved west to Tennessee after George finished serving in the American Revolution.
David's birth name was James. After his mother's death, he agreed to living with and being adopted in 1808 by David Porter, a naval officer whose father had been friends with his father. In 1812 James adopted the name David in honor of his adoptive father, with whom he went to sea late in 1810. David Farragut grew up in a naval family, as the adoptive brother of future Civil War admiral David Dixon Porter and commodore William D. Porter.