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NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS Colorado (I)

Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Merrimack-class Steam Screw Frigate:
  • Laid down, date unknown, at Norfolk Navy Yard as a wooden-hulled screw frigate
  • Launched, 19 June 1856
  • Commissioned USS Colorado, 13 March 1858, CAPT. W. H. Gardner in command
  • Initially assigned to the Caribbean
  • Placed in ordinary, 6 August 1858 at Boston
  • Recommissioned, 3 June 1861, assigned to the Gulf Blockading Squadron
  • Decommissioned, 28 June 1862, at Boston
  • Recommissioned, 10 November 1862, assigned to rejoin the Gulf Blockading Squadron at Mobile. AL.
  • Colorado boat party destroyed privateer Judah, 13 September 1861while outfitting at Pensacola
  • Took as prize steamer SS Lewis Whitmore, 6 May 1862
  • Decommissioned, 18 February 1864, at Portsmouth Navy Yard
  • Recommissioned, 1 September 1864, assigned to the North Atlantic blockading Squadron off the coast of North Carolina, Commodore Henry K. Thatcher in command
  • Decommissioned, 3 February 1865, at New York Navy Yard
  • Recommissioned, 25 May 1865, assigned to the European Squadron as flagship
  • Placed in ordinary, 7 September 1867 at New York
  • Recommissioned, 15 February 1870, assigned to the Asiatic Station, as flagship
  • Decommissioned, 25 March 1873, at New York
  • Recommissioned, 2 December 1873, assigned to the North Atlantic Station
  • Decommissioned, 8 June 1875
  • Assigned as Receiving Ship at New York Navy Yard from 1876 to 1884
  • Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • Sold, 14 February 1885
  • Final Disposition, fate unknown
    Displacement 3,425 t.
    Length 268' 6"
    Beam 52' 6"
    Draft 23' 9"
    Speed 9 kts
    Complement 646
    As Built
    two 10" smoothbores
    twenty-eight 9" smoothbores
    fourteen 8"/63 guns
    one 150-pdr muzzle loading rifle
    one 11" smoothbore
    forty-six 9" smoothbores
    four 12-pdr howitzers
    two 150-pdr muzzle loading rifle
    one 11" smoothbore
    forty-two 9" smoothbores
    two 20-pdr howitzers
    six 12-pdr howitzers
    Propulsion steam and sail

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    Size Image Description Contributed
    Colorado 144k Illustration of the crew of the screw-frigate USS Colorado preparing to ship out of Boston in 1861 from Harper’s Weekly. Bill Gonyo
    Colorado 134k Line engraving published in "Harper's Weekly", 1862, based on a sketch by an officer of USS Mississippi depicting Commodore Farragut's Squadron and Captain Porter's Mortar Fleet entering the Mississippi River at the Southwest Pass of the Mississippi, circa 7 April 1862. Features identified in the engraving's title lines include (from left to right): Light-house on Southwest Pass;
    USS Colorado (in left foreground);
    USS Pensacola on the bar;
    USS Westfield (seen nearly stern-on);
    Porter's mortar fleet, heading up the river;
    USS Mississippi on the bar;
    USS Harriet Lane (side-wheel steamer at the rear of the mortar fleet);
    USS Connecticut (in right foreground);
    USS Clifton;
    town of Banona.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command Photo # NH 59059
    Robert Hurst
    Colorado 307k Wood-cut engraving is titled "THE UNITED STATES FRIGATE COLORADO, FLAG-SHIP OF ADMIRAL GOLDSBOROUGH", published in "Harper's Weekly" July 1865. Tommy Trampp
    Maumee 94k "Bombardment of Fort Fisher" "Jan. 15th 1865"
    Lithograph after a drawing by T.F. Laycock, published by Endicott & Co., New York, 1865, depicting the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron bombarding Fort Fisher, North Carolina, in preparation for its capture. The print is dedicated to Commodore S.W. Gordon, USN. Ships present, as named on the original print, are (from left to right in the main battle line):
    USS Tacony;
    USS Maumee;
    USS Ticonderoga;
    USS Shenandoah;
    USS Tuscarora;
    USS Juniata;
    USS Wabash;
    USS Susquehanna;
    USS Colorado;
    USS Minnesotaa;
    USS Brooklyn;
    USS New Ironsides and
    USS Mohican.
    Ships in the foreground are (left to right, from the center of the view):
    USS Powhatan;
    USS Mackinaw;
    USS Vanderbilt and
    USS Malvern (Flagship of Rear Admiral David Dixon Porter).
    Monitors in the right middle distance are:
    USS Monadnock (with two turrets);
    USS Mahopac;
    USS Saugus and
    USS Canonicus.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # LC-USZ62-144 from the collections of the Library of Congress.
    Bill Gonyo
    Colorado 188k USS Colorado moored in an unidentified European port, probably during her assignment to the European Squadron from 1865 to 1867.
    Photo courtesy of INRO (International Naval Research Organization).
    Robert Hurst
    Colorado 310k USS Colorado moored at Port Mahon, Minorca, about 1866.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Robert Hurst
    Colorado 544k Monument at Cherbourg, France, dedicated to Franklin Goodwin, Apprentice Boy, US Navy, USS Colorado, who died as a result of falling from aloft in August 1866 and subsequently died in hospital at Cherbourg, France. Nicolas Livory
    Colorado 59k USS Colorado at anchor in Korean waters during the expedition to Korea in May anchor in 1871 during the United States Expedition to Korea. Photo from "Marine Amphibious Landing in Korea, 1871", by Carolyn A.Tyson. Washington, DC: Naval Historical Foundation. Robert Hurst
    166k A Korean official bearing the first despatches on board USS Colorado in June 1871.
    US National Archives at College Park Still Picture Records Section, Special Media Archives Services Division (NWCS-S), US National Archives Identifier 559257.
    Robert Hurst
    Colorado 127k USS Colorado ship's officers, photographed on her deck during the Korean expedition, June 1871.
    Those present include (seated at left, left to right):
    Lieutenant Hugh W. McKee, USN (killed in action 11 June 1871);
    Second Lieutenant William J. McDonald, Jr., USMC; and
    Lieutenant William W. Mead, USN.
    (seated at right):
    Chaplain John R. Matthews, USN. (standing, left to right):
    Gunner Thomas H. Fortune, USN;
    Ensign Charles A. Clark, USN;
    Captain McLane Tilton, USMC;
    Lieutenant Commander Henry F. Picking, USN;
    Master's Mate Charles Wilson, USN;
    Second Assistant Engineer Henry L. Slosson, USN;
    Lieutenant Commander Oscar F. Heyerman, USN;
    Captain George H. Cooper, USN, ship's Commanding Officer;
    unidentified officer;
    Lieutenant Commander Silas Casey, USN;
    unidentified (possibly a civilian);
    Chief Engineer Alexander Henderson, USN;
    Lieutenant Bloomfield McIlvaine, USN;
    Surgeon Henry O. Mayo, USN;
    Passed Assistant Surgeon Charles J.S. Wells, USN; and
    Lieutenant George M. Totten, USN.
    US Navy photo # NH 63679 from the collections of the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Bill Gonyo
    Colorado 88k During the Korean Expedition, Rear Admiral John Rodgers, Commanding the Asiatic Fleet, (standing to the right of the table, leaning on the chart) confers with other officers on board his flagship, USS Colorado, during the expedition in June 1871. Other officers present are (seated, left to right):
    Commander Edward P. McCrea, Commanding Officer, USS Monocacy;
    Captain George H. Cooper, Commanding Officer, USS Colorado; and
    Captain Edward T. Nichols, Chief of Staff to RADM. Rodgers.
    (standing, left to right):
    Master John E. Pillsbury, of USS Colorado;
    Commander Lewis A. Kimberly, Commanding Officer, USS Benicia;
    Commander Homer C. Blake, Commanding Officer, USS Alaska;
    Lieutenant Commander William K. Wheeler, Flag Secretary; and
    Lieutenant Charles H. Rockwell, Commanding Officer, USS Palos.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 66308 from the collection of Rear Admiral Ammen C. Farenholt, USN(MC)
    Bill Gonyo
    Colorado 90k Halftone reproduction of an artwork depicting USS Colorado sailors William F. Lukes, Seth Allen, and Thomas Murphy battling Koreans while trying to rescue the mortally wounded LT. Hugh W. McKee during the capture of the Han River forts, 11 June 1871. Lukes, the only survivor of the US Navy group, received the Medal of Honor for continuing to fight after receiving a head injury.
    "Deeds of Valor," Volume II, page 89, by the Perrien-Keydel Company, Detroit, 1907.
    Bill Gonyo
    277k Sujagi flag, captured at Fort McKee in the attacks on the Salee River Forts, June 10 and 11, 1871, by Corporal Charles Brown of the USS Colorado (left) and Private Hugh Purvis of the USS Alaska (middle). Both were awarded the Medal of Honor. Captain McLane Tilton, USMC, (right) commanded the Marines. Photograph was taken on USS Colorado, Captain George H. Cooper commanding, Flagship of Rear Admiral John Rodgers, commanding US Asiatic Fleet.
    Felice Beato (1832 -1909) - United States Marine Corps Historical Division photographic archives.
    Robert Hurst
    Colorado 111k USS Colorado moored pierside in New York harbor, date unknown. Tommy Trampp
    Colorado 126k USS Colorado moored pierside, date and location unknown.
    US Navy Photo © 1911, Reviews of Reviews Co. from "The Photographic History of the Civil War Volume 3 The Navies", The Blue & Gray Press, Secaucus, N.J.
    Mike Green
    Wachusett 284k Post card image of USS Wachusett and USS Colorado, date and location unknown Tommy Trampp
    114k USS Colorado ship's bell. The bell was originally used on the steam screw frigate Colorado launched in 1856 from Norfolk Navy Yard. It was also used by the second USS Colorado (ARC/CA- 7) (renamed Pueblo) which was built by William Cramp and Sons Ship and Engine Building Co., Philadelphia, PA. The reverse of the bell has the inscription "Puritan 1896" (b>USS Puritan).
    Collection of Brass Curator Branch: U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command. 94-90-C. Photo taken on 28 July 2014.
    Robert Hurst

    USS Colorado (I)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01CAPT. Gardner, W. H.13 March 1858 - ?
    02CAPT. Bailey, Theodoreus1861 - ?
    03COMO. Thatcher, Henry K.1 September 1864 - ?
    04CAPT. Cooper, George H.1871 - ?

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