USS New Hampshire (1864)

Coordinates: 42°34′14″N 70°44′44″W / 42.57056°N 70.74556°W / 42.57056; -70.74556
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USS New Hampshire housed over
Union Navy Jack United States
NameNew Hampshire
Laid downJune 1819
Launched23 April 1864 at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
Commissioned13 May 1864
Out of service23 May 1921
  • Burned, 23 May 1921
  • Sunk under tow, July 1922
General characteristics
Length203.7 ft (62.1 m)
Beam51.3 ft (15.6 m)
Draft21 ft 6 in (6.55 m)
Complement820 officers and men
The New Hampshire
USS New Hampshire (1864) is located in Massachusetts
USS New Hampshire (1864)
Nearest cityManchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts
Coordinates42°34′14″N 70°44′44″W / 42.57056°N 70.74556°W / 42.57056; -70.74556
ArchitectWilliam Doughty
NRHP reference No.76000261[1]
Added to NRHP29 October 1976

USS New Hampshire was a 2,633-ton ship originally designed to be the 74-gun ship of the line Alabama, but she remained on the stocks for nearly 40 years, well into the age of steam, before being renamed and launched as a storeship and depot ship during the American Civil War. She was later renamed to USS Granite State.

Service history[edit]

As Alabama, she was one of "nine ships to rate not less than 74 guns each" authorized by Congress on 29 April 1816,[2] and was laid down by the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Maine, in June 1819, the year the State of Alabama was admitted to the Union. Though ready for launch by 1825, she remained on the stocks for preservation; an economical measure that avoided the expense of manning and maintaining a ship of the line. Renamed New Hampshire on 28 October 1863, she was launched on 23 April 1864, fitted out as a storeship and depot ship of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, and commissioned on 13 May 1864, Commodore Henry K. Thatcher in command.

USS New Hampshire between 1890 and 1901

New Hampshire sailed from Portsmouth, New Hampshire on 15 June and relieved sister ship Vermont on 29 July 1864 as store and depot ship at Port Royal, South Carolina, and served there through the end of the Civil War. She returned to Norfolk, Virginia on 8 June 1866, serving as a receiving ship there until 10 May 1876, when she sailed back to Port Royal. She resumed duty at Norfolk in 1881 but soon shifted to Newport, Rhode Island. She became flagship of Commodore Stephen B. Luce's newly formed Apprentice Training Squadron, marking the commencement of an effective apprentice training program for the Navy. Four of New Hampshire's crewmen earned the Medal of Honor for jumping overboard to rescue fellow sailors from drowning in two separate 1882 incidents: Quartermaster Henry J. Manning and Ship's Printer John McCarton on 4 January 1882, and Boatswain's Mate James F. Sullivan and Chief Boatswain's Mate Jeremiah Troy on 21 April 1882.[3]

New Hampshire was towed from Newport to New London, Connecticut in 1891 and was receiving ship there until decommissioned on 5 June 1892. The following year she was loaned as a training ship for the New York Naval Militia, which was to furnish nearly a thousand officers and men to the Navy during the Spanish–American War. New Hampshire was renamed Granite State on 30 November 1904 to free the name "New Hampshire" for a newly authorized battleship New Hampshire (BB-25).[citation needed] Stationed in the Hudson River, Granite State continued training service throughout the years leading to World War I when State naval militia were practically the only trained and equipped men available to the Navy for immediate service. They were mustered into the Navy as National Naval Volunteers. The Secretary of the Navy and a Newspaper writer Josephus Daniels wrote in his paper Our Navy at War, "never again will men dare ridicule the Volunteer, the Reservist, the man who in a national crisis lays aside civilian duty to become a soldier or sailor—they fought well. They died well. They have left in deeds and words a record that will be an inspiration to unborn generations."[citation needed]

Granite State served the New York State Militia until she caught fire and sank at her pier in the Hudson River on 23 May 1921. Her hull was sold for salvage on 19 August to the Mulholland Machinery Corporation. Refloated in July 1922, she was taken in tow headed for the Bay of Fundy.[4] The towline parted during a storm, she again caught fire and sank off Half Way Rock near Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts on 26 July.

The shipwreck is in 30 ft (9.1 m) of water, and is an easy scuba dive mission. Although the hull is mostly buried in the sand, small artifacts and copper spikes may still be found. The site was added to the National Register of Historic Places on 29 October 1976, reference number 76000261.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "National Register Information System – (#76000261)". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 13 March 2009.
  2. ^ Gordon, John Steele (February 1993). "USS Boondoggle: The Business of America". American Heritage. 44 (1). Retrieved 1 August 2022. Consider the Navy's ship-of-the-line program that followed the War of 1812… Congress, on April 29, 1816, 'authorized to cause to be built, nine ships to rate not less than 74 guns each'. All nine were eventually laid down, in shipyards from Portsmouth, New Hampshire, to Norfolk, Virginia, and four of them were completed in a timely manner by the end of 1820. None of these ships ever saw action, of course, for the world had entered an extended era of peace.
  3. ^ "Medal of Honor Recipients – Interim Awards, 1871–1898". Medal of Honor Citations. United States Army Center of Military History. 5 August 2010. Retrieved 5 September 2010.
  4. ^ NY Times article, Jan. 15, 1922: "Old Granite State Soon to be Ashes"


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