Fort Fisher

Fort Fisher
Fort Fisher, NE Bastion. Frank Vizetelly (National Geographic)

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

U.S. Army Steamer Allison

I have been unable to find out any information on the Army steamer Allison which captured a ship off New Bern yesterday other than a drawing of it.

From Civil War Day By Day, University of N.C. Library.

13 October 1862:  Drawing of USS Steamer Allison by Herbert E. Valentine.

You can view it by typing in the above.

--Old B-Runner

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

N.C. Timeline, May 1863: Action at Gun Swamp Today in 1863

MAY 22--  Action at Gum Swamp  5th, 25th, 27th and 46th Massachusetts,  3rd Cavalry, Battery H 3rd Light Artillery, New York,  58th Pennsylvania.  Union losses: 2 killed, 5 wounded, 1 missing.

MAY 22--  Chase of a blockade runner by USS Penobscott under guns of Fort Fisher.

MAY 23--  Action at Batchelder's Creek  46th Massachusetts, 58th Pennsylvania.

--Old B-Runner

May 22, 1863: Union Army Steamer Allison Destroys Confederate Ship

MAY 22, 1863:  Union Army steamer Allison destroyed schooner Sea Bird after seizing her cargo of coal near New Bern, North Carolina.

--Old B-Runner

Monday, May 21, 2018

USS Detroit/Canandaigua: Six Ships By the Name USS Detroit in the US Navy

I have been writing about this ship, and the five other ships by the name USS Detroit,  in my Cooter's History Thing blog the last several days.  There are also accounts of the first USS Detroit in my Not So Forgotten War of 1812 blog.

I have been writing about the very briefly-named USS Detroit under its usual name of USS Canandaigua (now that I don't have to look up the spelling anymore) since May 15.

Plus, there was a Spanish-American War USS Detroit which I am writing about in my Cooter's History Thing blog and the World War II USS Detroit (one of the few ships to get underway at Pearl Harbor) in my Tattooed On Your Soul World War II blog.

You can go to those sites by clicking on My Blog List to the right of this entry.

--Old B-R'er

Some More on the USS Canandaigua

**  Edward Gabriel Andre Barrett commanded the USS Canandaigua after the war.

**  Canadaigua is a town in New York.  County seat of Ontario County.  Near Lake Ontario and southeast of Rochester.  There is also a Lake Canandaigua.

**  The USS Canandaigua was a sloop of war that only held the name USS Detroit from May 15 to August 10, 1869.  The ship was a mis-naming during a massive renaming exercise by the U.S. Navy.

**  A new USS Detroit was christened and launched October 18, 2014.

--Old B-Runnert

Friday, May 18, 2018

USS Canandaigua-- Part 3: Rescued Crew of USS Housatonic

On February 17, 1864, the Canandaigua rescued 140 survivors of the USS Housatonic after it was sunk by the Confederate submarine H.L. Hunley.

It arrived at Boston Navy Yard on March 26, 1865, and was decommissioned April 8.  Recommissioned after repairs on November 22, it was on European Station until February 1869, then began three years of extensive repairs at New York Navy Yard.

From may 15, 1869 to August 10, it was renamed USS Detroit, but then returned to its original name.

Its last cruise was 1872 to 1875 to the West Indies and Gulf of Mexico as part of the North Atlantic Station.

In 1875, it was decommissioned at Norfolk Navy Yard in Virginia and remained in ordinary until broken up in 1884.

--Old B-R'er

USS Canandaigua-- Part 2: Capturing Blockade Runners in 1863

Its commander at commissioning in 1862 was Commander J. F. Green.

Assigned to the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron on August 26, 1862, it captured the sloop Secesh on May 15, 1863 (the one I wrote about on Tuesday).  It later destroyed another blockade runner and assisted in the capture of a schooner and a steamer in the same area off Charleston, S.C..

It also took part in the attacks on positions in Charleston Harbor in 1863 and 1864.

--Old B-Runner

Thursday, May 17, 2018

USS Canandaigua-- Part 1: Commissioned 1862, Served Until 1875.

From Wikipedia.

Sloop of War,  1395 tons, steam engine screw.  Commissioned August 1, 1862, decommissioned April 8, 1865, recommissioned November 22, 1865

Renamed USS Detroit May 15, 1869.  Renamed Canandaigua August 18, 1869.  decommissioned November 8, 1875.  Scrapped 1884.

228 feet long, 38.5 foot beam, 15 foot draft, 10 knots.

Armament:  two 11-inch smoothbore, one 8-inch smoothbore, two 20-pdr. rifles.

--Old B-Runner

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Bennett Wood Green, CSN-- Part 1: Commission Taken By a Union Soldier

In my War of 1812 Not So Forgotten blog, I wrote about the 100th anniversary of Fort Eustis by Newport news, Virginia.  It was named for Abraham Eustis, a War of 1812 veteran and later first commander of Fort Monroe.

Fort Eustis was on the site of Confederate Fort Crawford, according to the article.  Fort Crawford was part of Confederate General John B. Magruder's Warwick Line to defend against McClellan's army in 1862.  I learned that the actual name of the Confederate fort was Fort Crafford.

One of the families that lived on Mulberry Island on the James River was the Green family.  Their son Bennett Wood Green became a surgeon in the Confederate Navy.  After the Confederates evacuated the Warwick line and Fort Crafford, abandoned homes were ransacked by Union soldiers.  One of them found Bennett Wood's commission in the Confederate Navy and took it as a souvenir.  However, it was returned to the family after the war.

Now, I need to find out about Bennett Green.

--Old B-R'er

Well, As It Turns Out, I Had Heard of The USS Canandaigua

Yesterday, I posted about this ship capturing a blockade runner named the Secesh off Charleston, S.C., on May 15, 1863, 155 years ago.  I mentioned that I had not heard of this ship before.  It turns out that I had already written about it one time.

This was the ship that rescued the crew of the USS Housatonic after it was sunk by the Confederate submarine H.L. Hunley.

Click on the USS Canandaigua label to find out what I wrote about it.

--Old B-Runner

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

May 15, 1863: Blockade Runner Secesh Caught By the USS Canandaigua

MAY 15, 1863:  The USS Canandaigua, Captain J.F. Green, captured blockade running sloop Secesh off Charleston, S.C., with a cargo of cotton.

I like the name of the ship it captured, the Secesh.  That would not make Old Secesh very happy.

I've never heard of the USS Canandaigua, but if it was commanded by a captain, it must have been a major Union warship.  I'll look it up.

--Does It have Anything to Do With Seceding?  --Old B-Runner

Monday, May 14, 2018

Lockwood Folly Inlet and River-- Part 2: Two Stories As To How It Was Named

There are two folklore stories as to how this name came to be:

1.  A man by the name of Lockwood was building the "boat of his dreams" on the river.  He worked tirelessly, but when finished it, he discovered that his boat's draft was too deep for it to cross the bar at the mouth of the river.

All he could do was to leave his ship to rot.  Locals began calling it "Lockwood's Folly" and eventually that name was applied to both the river and inlet.

2.  The second story revolves around a man named Lockwood who tried to build a colony along the river but did not bring enough supplies and got into a dispute with a local Indian tribe and the colony had to be disbanded.

The name appears on a 1671 map making the name one of the oldest named rivers in North Carolina.

--Old B-Runner

Lockwood's Folly River and Inlet-- Part 1: An Inlet to a Short Tidal River

Since I was writing so much on the USS Iron City and the blockade runners which sank at this place, I did some more research on it.

From Wikipedia.

I have seen it spelled both Lockwood and Lockwood's.  Over the last couple weeks I have been writing about the Civil War shipwrecks at Lockwood's Folly Inlet.  It is near Wilmington, North Carolina.


A short tidal river in Brunswick County, North Carolina, that runs from near Supply, N.C., southbound to the Atlantic Ocean.


Connects the Atlantic Ocean with the Intercoastal Waterway and was once the mouth of the Lockwood Folly River prior to the construction of the Intercoastal and natural sand shifting.  It separates the barrier islands of Oak Island and Holden Beach.

--Old B-Runner

Friday, May 11, 2018

A New Book on Farragut-- Part 2: Farragut and Porter

The fourth chapter tells the complicated and often competitive relationship between Farragut and his younger step brother, David Dixon Porter (1813-1891).

Both hated the Confederacy.  Serving together, with Porter as a subordinate, Farragut captured New Orleans in 1862.  The next year, in separate commands, the two were able to capture the Mississippi River by assisting the Army.

Then, Farragut  won the victory at the Battle of Mobile Bay, closing the Confederacy's last port on the Gulf of Mexico.  Farragut was offered command of the expedition to attack Fort Fisher but turned it down.  It was given to Porter who achieved his crowning moment with its capture.

Afterwards, both  honored as America's first full admirals., Farragut in 1866 and Porter in 1870.

The final chapter examines Farragut's only son, Loyall (1844-1916) who spent his life promoting and protecting his father's legacy.

Looks Like An Interesting Read.  --Old B-Runner

Thursday, May 10, 2018

"Diving Blockade Runners" Talk at Cape Fear Civil War Round Table Tonight

From the May 7, 2018, Wilmington (NC) Star-News by Bill Jayne.

An estimated 11111111,600 blockade runners plied the trade during the Civil War.  Enormous profits were made among huge losses.

Gary Henderson USAF (ret) and former Piedmont Airlines pilot will speak on the subject Thursday, May 10 at Harbor United Methodist Church at 4853 Masonboro Loop Road, Wilmington, North Carolina.

None other than famed Confederate General Robert E. lee considered Wilmington of ultimate importance to his ability to keep his Army of Northern Virginia in the field.  This was because of all the war materiel coming through the blockade there and then railroaded to him in Virginia.

Mr. Henderson graduated from New Hanover High School in Wilmington in 1963 and is a dedicated scuba diver.  He has dived on nine Civil War wrecks and says the Ella, off Bald Head Island is the most interesting of them.  The Condor and Wild Dayrell are also interesting.

Running the Blockade (Hey, That's Me!!) was a risky but profitable undertaking.  Some 1000 blockade runners were captured in the war and more than 300 destroyed.

Sure Wish I Could Be There.  --Old B-Runner