USS Home (1862)

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Union Navy JackUnited States
Name: USS Home
Ordered: as Key West
Laid down: date unknown
Launched: 1862
Acquired: 14 August 1863
Commissioned: 21 August 1863
Decommissioned: 24 August 1865
Struck: 1865 (est.)
Fate: Sold, date unknown
General characteristics
Type: Steamer
Displacement: 725 long tons (737 t)
Length: 165 ft (50 m)
Beam: 29 ft 9 in (9.07 m)
Depth of hold: 11 ft (3.4 m)
Speed: kn (6.9 mph; 11 km/h)
Complement: Unknown
Armament: 2 × 24 pdr (11 kg) howitzers, 1 × 12 pdr (5.4 kg) rifle

USS Home (1862) was a large steamship purchased by the Union Navy during the American Civil War. She was placed into service as a hospital ship assigned to support the fleet blockading the ports of the Confederate States of America.

However, on occasion, she was ordered to serve as a blockader and was provided with the necessary deck guns for that purpose.

Constructed at Brooklyn, New York, in 1862 as Key West[edit]

Home — a screw steamer — was built as Key West in 1862 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, New York. She was purchased by the Navy at New York on 14 August 1863, commissioned on 21 August 1863, Acting Master W. H. Garfield commanding, and name changed to Home.

Assigned to the South Atlantic Blockade[edit]

Assigned to the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, Home sailed after commissioning for Charleston, South Carolina, towing monitor Lehigh.

Designated as a "rest ship"[edit]

Home was assigned by Rear Admiral John A. Dahlgren as a rest ship, to which the exhausted crews of the steaming monitors could retire after the fierce bombardments of early September.

Designated as a blockader and as a hospital ship[edit]

She remained off Charleston with periodic trips to Port Royal, South Carolina for repairs until July 1864, when she was assigned to act as a hospital ship inside the bar at Charleston. While serving as a combination blockader-hospital ship, her medical department was composed of Surgeons William Nicholas Pindell and Nelson Ingram, and the Surgeon Steward Frank Cook.

Multi-tasking lightship and reconnaissance duties[edit]

She continued her combination blockader-hospital ship service until mid-1865, when she took up lightship duties in the harbor. During this period, Home also sent members of her crew ashore on boat expeditions in the Charleston area, notably on 5 March 1865, when an important reconnaissance of Charleston harbor obstructions was effected.

Post-war deactivation and subsequent career[edit]

Home returned to New York City in August 1865 and decommissioned on 24 August 1865. Redocumented Key West, she returned to merchant service; she was stranded and lost off Cape Hatteras on 12 October 1870.

See also[edit]


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