USS De Soto (1861-1868). Originally the civilian steamship De Soto (1859)
De Soto , a 1675-ton (burden) wooden side-wheel steamship, was built at Brooklyn, New York in 1859. She was purchased by the Navy in August 1861, converted to a warship, and commissioned later in the year. De Soto joined the Gulf Blockading Squadron in December and in January 1862 captured the first of more than twenty vessels that would be credited to her account during two
and a half years of enforcing the Federal blockade of the Confederacy's Gulf of Mexico coast. The steamer was decommissioned for repairs in June 1864 and did not return to active service until August 1865, by which time the Navy had resumed peacetime operations.
Thereafter De Soto cruised along the U.S. Atlantic seaboard and in the Gulf and West Indies region. She was damaged by an earthquake on 18 November 1867, but was repaired and saw further Caribbean service in 1868. Decommissioned in September 1868, USS De Soto was sold later in that month. She returned to commercial employment, but was destroyed by fire in December 1870.
Watercolor by Erik Heyl, 1947, painted for use in his book "Early American Steamers"
The Civil War on Hatteras Island North Carolina New
light on the experiences of Civil War soldiers stationed on the Outer Banks. It follows the crucial maritime battles along the Outer Banks and the famous Burnsides Expedition. Aa fascinating history of how one of America's most treasured islands played a significant part in the Civil War
The Story of the H.L. Hunley During the Civil War, Union forces blockade the
port of Charleston so the Confederate army seeks a way to attrack the Yankee Ships. George Dixon is part of the group of men given the task of creating and building the "fish boat," a submarine. The H.L. Hunley ultimately sets out on its mission to sink Yankee ships, but fails to return, its whereabouts unknown.
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
Blue Vs. Gray - Killing Fields Relive the most vicious fighting of the Civil
War, in which General Ulysses S. Grant forcibly reversed the tide of the conflict by paying with the blood of thousands. It was a desperate time for the Union
Sources: U.S. National Park Service U.S. Library of Congress US Naval Archives