USS General Sherman (1864)

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USS General Sherman.jpg
The only existing photograph of USS General Sherman
US Naval Jack 36 stars.svg
Namesake: William Tecumseh Sherman
Laid down: date unknown
Launched: 1864
Commissioned: 27 July 1864
Out of service: 3 June 1865
Struck: 1865 (est.)
  • returned to the Army
  • 3 June 1865
General characteristics
Displacement: 187 tons
Length: 168 ft (51 m)
Beam: 26 ft (7.9 m)
Depth of hold: 4 ft 6 in (1.37 m)
Speed: not known
Complement: not known
Armor: tinclad

USS General Sherman (1864) was acquired from the U.S. War Department by the Union Navy during the American Civil War as a gunboat in waterways of the Confederate South. She was named after Gen. William T. Sherman.

Constructed in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in 1864[edit]

General Sherman, a 187-ton side-wheel "tinclad" river gunboat, was one of four light wooden gunboats built at Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the War Department in 1864. She commissioned at Bridgeport, Alabama, 27 July 1864, Acting Master Joseph W. Morehead in command.

Turned over to the Navy and commissioned in July 1864, General Sherman spent most of her service on the Upper Tennessee River.

Patrolling the Tennessee River[edit]

General Sherman was assigned to the 11th District, Mississippi Squadron, and became part of Lt. Moreau Forrest's gunboat fleet on the upper Tennessee River.

Leaving Bridgeport, Alabama, 22 August, she patrolled with other gunboats between Decatur, Alabama, and Muscle Shoals, Alabama, controlling guerrilla attacks and working to prevent major elements of Confederate General John Bell Hood's army from crossing the river into Tennessee. General Sherman continued to patrol until she returned to Bridgeport for repairs 17 December.

Supporting General Steedman at Decatur[edit]

Returning to the upper Tennessee River, General Sherman lent vital artillery support to the forces of Gen. James B. Steedman at Decatur, 27 December, shelling Confederate emplacements as Union Army troops crossed the river.

She again patrolled the river, attempting to cut off the withdrawal of Hood's army from Tennessee and convoying Union supply ships, until the war ended.

Post-war return to the Army Quartermaster[edit]

General Sherman was returned to the Army Quartermaster Department at Chattanooga, Tennessee, 3 June 1865.

See also[edit]


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