Tons of activity about the Civil War Navy on the interwebs. Of course, this week marks the beginning of Mason and Slidell's overseas assignment, ultimately leading to the infamous Trent Affair with Charles Wilkes. You can read a previous post about the Trent Affair HERE, or go to CivilWarHome.
|USS Richmond near Baton Rouge, LA|
Around the blogosphere, an interesting tidbit popped up on the Civil War Visions blog about a sailor's first reaction to combat. The text, taken from United States Sanitary Commission Soldiers' Letters From Camp, Battlefield, and Person, describes Walton Grinnell's eyewitness account of an engagement between the USS Richmond and the rebel steamer William H. Webb along the Mississippi River. For the 17 year old sailor aboard the Nyack, there was much cause for excitement. He ends his entry by saying, "Although I have before been under fire of musketry, yet I can fancy nothing comparable with the whizzing and bursting of rifle-shell." A very interesting bit of primary source information to read. It tells much of what sailors experienced in what historian John Keegan called the "Face of Battle." The Richmond would later take part in the capture of New Orleans.
By far, the most interesting article about the Civil War navies put out in the last few days should be credited to the Washington Post Lifestyle section. The article, titled "Battle of Ball's Bluff revealed a truth: The Civil War was a river war," describes how the small engagement turned Union fiasco can explain the complex nature of rivers and warfare during the five year conflict. The author of the article summarized the battle best: "sketchy information, a river too deep to ford, not enough boats, and soldiers who couldn’t swim." The article goes on to explain the "River Fact," justifying the importance of riverine combat in the West "both strategically and tactically." Check it out. A very interesting piece for the collection of our collective understanding of the Civil War navies, as much of the focus in the past few months has remained on land.
|LH Marines from the Galena explain how a 3-pounder cannon works to a NMC sailor. (Eng)|
Hampton Roads Naval Museum Education Director Lee Duckworth and CWN 150 Coordinator Matthew T. Eng had a booth at Tuesday's Navy Day 2011 Event at Navy Medical Center (Portsmouth, VA). Various living history groups were in attendance, including the Tidewater Marine Living History Association and Galena Marine Ships Company. You can see the photo stream on the CWN 150 Facebook page HERE.
A few events were uploaded to the Civil War Navy Sesquicentennial calendar. These events were submitted by "Seaman Rob" and the USS Ft. Henry Living History Association. The living history group is scheduled to appear at these Florida events. for more information, please go to http://www.ussforthenry.com/.
- 15 October: Seahorse Key Open House (Cedar Key, FL)
- 22-23 October: The Civil War in Jacksonville at Ft. Caroline National Monument (Jacksonville, FL)