World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

USS Varuna (1861)

Article Id: WHEBN0001954053
Reproduction Date:

Title: USS Varuna (1861)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Battle of Forts Jackson and St. Philip, USS Varuna, Charles Swasey, USS Oneida (1861), Buras-Triumph, Louisiana
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

USS Varuna (1861)

USS Varuna
History
Union Navy Jack United States
Builder: Mallory Yard, Mystic, Connecticut
Laid down: January or early February 1861
Launched: September 1861
Acquired: 31 December 1861 at New York City
Commissioned: circa February 1862
Out of service: 24 April 1862
Struck: 1862 (est.)
Fate: sunk in action 24 April 1862
General characteristics
Displacement: 1,300 tons
Length: 218 ft (66 m)
Beam: 34 ft 8 in (10.57 m)
Depth of hold: 18 ft 3 in (5.56 m)
Propulsion:
  • steam engine
  • screw-propelled
Speed: not known
Complement: not known
Armament:

USS Varuna (1861) was a heavy (1,300 ton) steam-powered ship acquired by the Union Navy during the early days of the American Civil War. She was outfitted with powerful 8-inch guns and assigned, as a gunboat, to the Union blockade of the waterways of the Confederate States of America.

Contents

  • Built in Connecticut 1
  • Civil War service 2
    • Joining the Union blockade 2.1
    • Mississippi River operations 2.2
    • Varuna sunk in action 2.3
    • Varuna honored with a poem 2.4
  • See also 3
  • References 4

Built in Connecticut

Varuna, the first U.S. Navy ship to bear the name, was originally intended for merchant service between New York City and New Orleans. She was laid down in late January or early February 1861 at the Mallory Yard, Mystic, Connecticut; launched there in the following September; and purchased by the Navy at New York City on 31 December 1861.

Civil War service

Joining the Union blockade

On 10 February 1862, she was ordered to remain in New York until Monitor was ready for action so that she might escort the new ironclad from New York to Hampton Roads, Virginia, to protect the wooden-hulled Union blockaders there from the Southern armored ram, CSS Virginia.

However, these orders were revoked later that same day; and Varuna was assigned to the newly established West Gulf Blockading Squadron. En route south late in February, Varuna put into Port Royal, South Carolina, for repairs, where the ship's commanding officer, Commander Charles S. Boggs, assumed temporary command of the harbor on 24 February during Flag Officer Samuel F. Du Pont's absence. The gunboat finally joined Rear Admiral David G. Farragut's West Gulf Blockading Squadron on 6 March.

Mississippi River operations

On 24 April 1862, Varuna was with the squadron during Farragut's daring nighttime dash past Confederate works guarding the Mississippi below New Orleans – Fort Jackson and Fort St. Philip.

Varuna sunk in action

At the height of the melee, Varuna was rammed twice by the steamer CSS Governor Moore and struck twice again immediately thereafter by the cotton-clad ram CSS Stonewall Jackson. After striking Varuna, CSN Lt. Beverly Kennon, in command of one of the Confederate warships, Governor Moore – found himself unable to depress his guns far enough to fire upon the Union vessel. So he shot through the bow of his own ship and used the resulting hole as a gun port.

Fatally damaged, Varuna backed off from the Confederate vessels and continued to subject them to a withering fire until rising water silenced her guns. Eight sailors of the Varuna received the William Martin, Quartermaster John McGowan, Coxswain William McKnight, and Second Class Boy Oscar E. Peck.[1][2]

USS Varuna in battle with Confederate warships.
USS Varuna sinking

Varuna honored with a poem

Rear Admiral Farragut's stunning victory at and subsequent Philadelphia Press on 12 May.

See also

References

  1. ^ "Civil War Medal of Honor Recipients (A–L)". Medal of Honor Citations.  
  2. ^ "Civil War Medal of Honor Recipients (M-Z)". Medal of Honor Citations. U.S.  

This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here.

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.