The Penobscot Expedition: Massachusetts responded immediately to the British seizure of Castine by sending a naval force of 1500 men to the area. The American fleet dawdled in Penobscot Bay for three weeks, waiting for a command from their captain that never came. Finally, when a British relief fleet arrived, the American fleet fled up the Penobscot River, followed closely by the British. Trapped, most Americans abandoned ship and ran for their lives. Some burned their ships themselves, rather than allow them to be captured by the British. The expedition was an embarrassment, and the British remained at Castine until the end of the war.