CSS General Earl Van Dorn

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Confederate States
Name: General Earl Van Dorn
Namesake: Earl Van Dorn
Operator: Confederate States Navy
Acquired: 1862
Fate: Burned to avoid capture, 26 June 1862
General characteristics
Type: Side-wheel River Steamer
Service record
Part of: River Defense Fleet

The CSS General Earl Van Dorn, a side-wheel river steamer, was fitted out in early 1862 at New Orleans, Louisiana as a River Defense Fleet "cottonclad" ram.

In late March, she steamed up the Mississippi River to Memphis, Tennessee, where her outfitting was completed. In the naval action off Fort Pillow on May 10, she attacked a Union mortar boat with gunfire and rammed the ironclad USS Mound City.

On June 1, she helped cover the Confederate evacuation of Fort Pillow, then retreated to Memphis, where, on June 6 she was the only survivor of the River Defense Fleet's final battle. After escaping to Yazoo City, Mississippi, General Earl Van Dorn was burned on June 26, 1862 to avoid capture by Federal warships.

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This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.