Category Archives: Navies

George Washington Rains & The Union Gunboats at Fort Donelson

Ted Savas shares some of his research and historic documentation! Another piece of the puzzle fell into place for me as I continue working daily on my book tentatively titled: The Other Side of the Civil War: George Washington Rains, … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Navies, Weapons | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Maine at War: January 2021

Here’s what our friend Brian Swartz was up to in January at his blog, Maine at War: January 6, 2021: Maine naval officer fights on the Mississippi Acting Volunteer Master John F. Harden of Rockland chases Raphael Semmes in the … Continue reading

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Town Between the Rivers: Cairo, Illinois

A blue-coated rider appeared atop the riverbank above the steamer Belle Memphis. Rebels massed in the cornfield behind him fired volleys that whistled by the horseman, whanged through the tall smokestacks, and thudded into the vessel’s superstructure. Hundreds of Iowa … Continue reading

Posted in Battlefields & Historic Places, Navies, Western Theater | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Loss of the USS Monitor

It was on this date, December 31, 1862, at 1:30 a.m.—in the earliest hours of New Year’s Eve—that the USS Monitor went down in rough seas off Cape Hatteras. Sixteen men aboard lost their lives. Forty-seven men, including Captain John … Continue reading

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“You can do a great deal in eight days”: Ulysses S. Grant’s Forgotten Turning Point (part two)

Part two of two With an escort of twenty cavalrymen, Ulysses S. Grant rode on the evening of May 3, 1863, into the newly captured town Grand Gulf, Mississippi. He passed the now-abandoned Confederate forts, Cobun and Wade, and made … Continue reading

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“You can do a great deal in eight days”: Ulysses S. Grant’s Forgotten Turning Point (part one)

Part one of two Ulysses S. Grant had envisioned his arrival in Grand Gulf, Mississippi, under other circumstances. A week earlier, he had targeted the landing as the ideal spot to cross his army from the west bank of the … Continue reading

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Robin Hood & The Civil War: Robin Hood Got Sunk (Part 2)

Part of a series Well, not the Medieval outlaw from Sherwood Forest, but—believe it or not—one of the ships in the infamous “stone fleet” at Charleston, South Carolina, in 1861 was named Robin Hood. Here is that saga: Robin Hood … Continue reading

Posted in Navies | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

“Praise the Lord and Admiral Porter”: Running the Vicksburg Batteries

“We still live,” wrote Lieutenant Elias Smith of the USS Lafayette. “The whole gunboat fleet passed the Vicksburg batteries on Thursday night [April 16, 1863], without receiving material damage. All praise to the Lord and Admiral Porter.” As far as … Continue reading

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Home Libraries: A Salty Civil War Library

Back in the 90’s, Judi and I loved cruising beautiful Virginia country byways and rural towns always seeking that musty little used-book store. She headed for the garden section and I, of course, made a beeline for the Civil War … Continue reading

Posted in Books & Authors, Navies | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Question of the Week: 9/7-9/13/20

Great answers for last week’s question with a Federal focus…today we ask the question again with a Southern angle. What’s your favorite Confederate ship? Any craft that steams or sails, blue or brown water, qualifies in the loose designation of … Continue reading

Posted in Navies, Question of the Week | Tagged , | 18 Comments