USS Choctaw (1856)
USS Choctaw off Vicksburg
|Laid down:||1853, at New Albany, Indiana|
|Commissioned:||23 March 1863, at St. Louis, Missouri|
|Decommissioned:||22 July 1865, at Algiers, Louisiana|
|Fate:||sold, 28 March 1866|
|Displacement:||1,004 long tons (1,020 t)|
|Length:||260 ft (79 m)|
|Beam:||45 ft (14 m)|
|Draft:||8 ft (2.4 m)|
|Speed:||2 knots (4 km/h) upstream|
|Complement:||106 officers and men|
Built in New Albany, Indiana in 1853, launched in 1856
She was built for the merchant service; her keel was laid down at New Albany, Indiana, in 1853. She was launched in 1856. She was purchased by the United States Army on 27 September 1862 and converted into an ironclad ram, then transferred to commissioned into the United States Navy at St. Louis, Missouri on 23 March 1863 with Lieutenant Commander Francis M. Ramsay in command.
Civil War operations
From 23 April 1863, until the end of the war, Choctaw operated in the Mississippi River and its tributaries. Between 29 April and 1 May 1863, she stood up the Yazoo River for a feigned attack on Haynes' Bluff, Mississippi, designed to prevent the Confederates from reinforcing Grand Gulf. During this action, she was struck 53 times.
Remaining in the Yazoo, she took part in attacks with the Union Army which led to the destruction of Confederate works at Haynes' Bluff and the burning of the navy yard and ships lying there, at Yazoo City, between 18 and 23 May.
Between 7 March and 15 May 1864, she took part in the operations leading to the capture of Fort DeRussy.
- Miller, Francis Trevelyan, Robert S. Lanier, and Henry Wysham Lanier. The Photographic History of the Civil War: Thousands of Scenes Photographed, 1861-1865. In Ten Volumes, 1911.
- This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here.
- USS Choctaw, History.navy.mil
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