CSS Arkansas , an ironclad ram, was built at Memphis, Tennessee, in 1861-62. Incomplete when Union forces closed in on Memphis in May 1862, she was towed up the Yazoo River to Yazoo City, Mississippi, and finished as far as circumstances allowed. On 15 July 1862, her enterprising commanding officer, Lieutenant Isaac Newton Brown , CSN, took Arkansas down the Yazoo, where she encountered the U.S. gunboats Carondelet and Tyler and the ram Queen of the West , leaving the first two badly damaged. Continuing out into the Mississippi River, she boldly fought her way through the assembled Federal fleet and came to rest under the protection of the Confederate fortress at Vicksburg. While at Vicksburg on 22 July, Arkansas was attacked by the Queen of the West and ironclad Essex , but was not severely damaged. Though badly in need of repairs, she was next ordered to steam down the river to assist Confederate forces in an attack on Baton Rouge, Louisiana. While carrying out this mission on 6 August 1862, CSS Arkansas suffered a severe machinery breakdown during an engagement with the Essex , drifted ashore and was burned to prevent capture.
Sepia wash drawing by R.G. Skerrett, 1904.
Courtesy of the Navy Art Collection, Washington, DC
19th Century photograph of a sketch by S. Milliken, CSN
Line engraving after a drawing by J.O. Davidson, published in "Battles and Leaders of the Civil War", Volume III, page 573, depicting the ship fitting out off Yazoo City, Mississippi, in June-July 1862. Assisting in the work is the CSS Capitol .
The CSS Arkansas: A Confederate Ironclad on Western Waters
While the Monitor and Merrimack are the most famous of the Civil War ironclads, the Confederacy had another ship in its flotilla that carried high hopes and a metal hull. The makeshift CSS Arkansas, completed by Lt. Isaac Newton Brown and manned by a mixed crew of volunteers, gave the South a surge of confidence when it launched in 1862.
The Arkansas ran the Gauntlet of the Whole Fleet
Artwork published in "Deeds of Valor", Volume II, page 31, by the Perrien-Keydel Company, Detroit, 1907.
It depicts CSS Arkansas during her passage through the Federal fleet above Vicksburg, Mississippi, on 15 July 1862
The Rebel Ram 'Arkansas' Running Through the Union Fleet off Vicksburg
Line engraving published in "Harper's Weekly", 1862, depicting the passage of CSS Arkansas through the Federal fleet above Vicksburg, Mississippi, on 15 July 1862
Sid Meier's Civil War Collection
Take command of either Confederate or Union troops and command them to attack from the trees, rally around the general, or do any number of other realistic military actions.
Civil War A Nation Divided
Rally the troops and organize a counterattack -- Your strategic decision and talent as a commander will decide if the Union is preserved or if Dixie wins its independence
Halls of Honor
The U.S. Navy Museum takes you on an informed and entertaining romp through one of North America s oldest and finest military museums. The museum has been in continuous operation at the Washington Navy Yard since the American Civil War
Raise The Alabama
She was known as "the ghost ship." During the Civil War, the CSS Alabama sailed over 75,000 miles and captured more than 60 Union vessels. But her career came to an end in June of 1864 when she was sunk by the USS Kearsarge off the coast of Northern France
The Civil War - A Film by Ken Burns
Here is the saga of celebrated generals and ordinary soldiers, a heroic and transcendent president and a country that had to divide itself in two in order to become one