USS Sovereign (1855)
|Laid down:||date unknown|
|Acquired:||9 January 1863|
|Out of service:||1865|
The Navy placed Sovereign in service as a commissary ship, which is a ship's tender responsible for providing ships with provisions. Later in the war, she was used by the Navy as a barracks ship for ship workers.
Built in Pennsylvania in 1855
She was acquired by the Confederacy in 1861 and served as a transport on the same river system.
On 5 June 1862, on the Mississippi River near Island No. 37, she was fired upon by USS Benton and, as Union tugboat USS Spitfire closed for action, was abandoned by her crew. However, a 16-year-old lad who was loyal to the Union remained on board, removed weights from the steamer's safety valves, wetted down her fires, and signaled Spitfire with a white sheet. A prize crew from the Union tug then took possession of the ship.
Meanwhile, in the summer of 1862, she had been placed in service as a commissary boat for the Western Flotilla under the command of First Master Thomas Baldwin. She served for the most part off the mouth of the Yazoo River tending combatant ships during operations against Vicksburg, Mississippi.
After the Confederate river fortress fell, she ascended the river to Cairo, Illinois, where she was laid up and used as quarters for workmen in the navy yard.
- Confederate States Navy
- Anaconda Plan
- Mississippi Squadron
- United States Navy
- List of United States Navy ships