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McLean Research Associates is dedicated to presenting little known facts about the US Navy in the Civil War, presentations on a myriad of astronomical topics,STEM workshops, and letterboxing.


In commemoration of the 160 years since the Civil War - or more appropriately in the vernacular of the day - The War of the Slaveholders' Rebellion - we are featuring a quote and picture of the day from the Naval Records


Period Picture
LT Pratt, USN
Thu Jul 14 1864

CAPT Jonathan A Winslow, USS Kearsarge, writes LT J D Wilson, CSN, "The conduct of Joseph D. Wilson, late lieutenant on board the Alabama, has been so honorable, first, in presenting himself on board the Kearsarge and surrendering himself when it was in his power to have gone on board the Deerhound and gained his liberty in the dishonorable manner which others had taken, and again, in his repudiation of the means pursued by those who obtained their liberty in this way, and his deportment while a prisoner having been of the same honorable standard, at the instance of Mr. Adams, minister of the United States at the court of St. James, I have paroled the said Wilson; and feeling a full confidence and trust in his word and honor, I recommend that all privileges which can be given a prisoner of war should be extended to him, believing fully he will never violate any obligation which he pledges himself to fulfill."

CDR Foxhall A Parker, Potomac Flotilla, telegrams SECNAV "Cuyler has reported from Point Lookout, and the following vessels have arrived off the navy yard: Mackinaw, Atlanta, Commodore Barney, and Morse."

CDR Parker writes LT Edward Hooker, 1st Division, Potomac Flotilla,"You will proceed with all dispatch to the Rappahannock River and resume your duties in charge of the blockade off the mouth of that river."

SECNAV telegrams CDR Parker, "Send all the vessels belonging to the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron, except the Mackinaw, to the squadron immediately.
    Let each take a copy of the order just sent to the yard for Admiral Lee, who is on his way up the river."
Parker replies "Following-named vessels have sailed for their stations in the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron: Commodore Barney, Morse, Atlanta."

CDR Parker telegrams SECNAV "Lieutenant-Commander Upshur has just reported his arrival in the Minnesota at Point Lookout. I have telegraphed to him to return [to] his station in the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron."

CDR Parker writes LT Hooker "You will relieve the U. S. S. Resolute and tow the U. S. S. Atlanta to Fortress Monroe and then return to the Rappahannock."

CDR Parker telegrams SECNAV "I have sent for a full report of the burning of Gunpowder [River bridge]."

CAPT Melancton Smith, SOPA James River, writes MGEN B F Butler, USA, Department of Virginia and North Carolina, "I herewith enclose a very modest report of Lieutenant Chambers of his operation in this vicinity on the morning of the 12th instant, with a force assigned to the navy for picket duty, and 50 additional men detailed by your order to cooperate.
    It only remains for me to speak of the gallantry displayed by Lieutenant Chambers and the force under his command, and the good judgment exercised by him in the accomplishment of the object desired.
    The disposition manifested by him to share the credit of his achievements with the subordinates associated with him I also consider very creditable.
    I send you herewith a sketch of the captured torpedo."

CAPT J F Green, SOPA Charleston, writes RADM Jonathan Dahlgren, South Atlantic Blockading Squadron "I respectfully submit for your information as follows:
    Your order relating to the Oleander, of the 11th instant, did not reach me until after she had left this anchorage for Stono. I have sent an order to her by the Harvest Moon to return here after completing the delivery of ordnance stores at Stono, which order has not as yet been complied with. The Pawnee arrived here yesterday and the Wamsutta to-day.
    This ship, as well as the Paramount, I consider in an insecure condition on account of having loaded shell and ordnance stores stowed between decks above the water line.
    I intend, unless you disapprove of the arrangement, to remove from the Scribner to the Georgia, which vessels are now at Stono, all ordnance stores excepting powder, and to bring the former vessel here for the purpose of putting on board of her as many loaded shell from this ship and the Paramount as she can stow.
    Acting Master Gifford took passage North in the Massachusetts, on leave. I have detailed for scout duty Acting Master Kempton, of the Supply, and Acting Ensign Gairy, of the Acacia, and ordered Acting Ensign [Frank] Fisher temporarily to this ship.
    I would state that this ship is very much in need of competent watch officers.
    There are on board of this ship 15 contrabands, 10 males and 5 females, that escaped from Bulls Bay and came off to the Blunt on the 11th instant. I shall send them by the first opportunity to Port Royal.
    Since my application of the 12th instant to have the Home sent here for weighing, mooring, etc., I am informed that it is doubtful whether she can be put in a condition for that kind of service. If such be the case, I would suggest that one of the mortar schooners may be sent here instead of her, fitted with large hawse holes, bolts for deck tackle, etc.
    The Sweet Briers engines and appurtenances require repairs. Chief Engineer Stamm estimates it will occupy six days to make them, and recommends her going to Port Royal.
    As moonlight nights prevail now, I shall dispatch her to Port Royal Sunday, and have to request of you to give directions that there be no delay in making the repairs, her presence here during the dark nights being indispensable to guard Sullivan's Island Channel."

RADM David Glasgow Farragut, West Gulf Blockading Squadron, writes CAPT Percival Drayton, Captain of the Fleet, West Gulf Blockading Squadron, "Enclosed is an order to Lieutenant-Commander Cooke, to be delivered to him provided that the Department in its dispatch of June 15, which is in the archives, directed that this officer should go North.
    Acting Master G. P. Pomeroy I intend to take command of the Estrella for the present. I wish her gotten ready for service as soon as possible. I will place her in the sounds, as she draws but 6 or 7 feet water."

LCDR Leroy Ritch, 10th District, Mississippi Squadron, writes RADM David D Porter, Mississippi Squadron, " I have the honor to report that the U. S. steamers General Grant and General Sherman will be put in commission on Wednesday, the 20th proximo, and go into active service.
    The other two - the General Burnside and General Thomas - will follow in a day or so after.
    The General Thomas has been patrolling the river for some weeks, but not regularly in commission. She will now be relieved by the Grant and Sherman, get her regular battery, officers, etc., and go into commission regularly.
    All the boats have their complete complement of officers, lists of which will be sent in very soon, together with muster rolls, etc."

Teachers and Educators - we have several Civil War presentations covering the US Navy throughout the Civil War which include our portable museum, Submarines, and key naval and land battles. Check out our Civil War section for more details. We also have several presentations on astronomy for all age groups




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