Please report any broken links or trouble you might come across to the Webmaster. Please take a moment to let us know so that we can correct any problems and make your visit as enjoyable and as informative as possible.


NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS Benton


Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Ironclad steamer:
  • Built, circa 1861, as a catamaran snagboat at St. Louis, MO. for the US Army
  • Commissioned, 24 February 1862, as USS Benton, LT. J. Bishop in command
  • During the Civil War USS Benton participated in the following engagements:
  • Captures of Island Number Ten, Fort Pillow and Memphis in the Spring of 1862
  • Action with the Confederate ironclad CSS Arkansas near Vicksburg, MS. in the Summer of 1862
  • Yazoo River expedition in summer1862

  • Transferred to US Navy control, 1 October 1862
  • In September 1862 LCDR. William Gwin took command of the big ironclad Benton. On 27 December 1862, in a heated engagement with Confederate artillery on the Yazoo River, his ship was seriously damaged and Gwin mortally wounded. LCDR. William Gwin died from his wounds on 3 January 1863. In reporting his death to the Navy Department, Gwin's squadron commander, Rear Admiral David Dixon Porter, remarked: "The country has lost one of its bravest officers." Photo from the collections of the Library of Congress.
  • Damaged by Confederate gunfire on the Yazoo River in December 1862
  • Ran past Vicksburg, April 1863 and bombarded Grand Gulf, MS in May
  • An attack on Fort DeRussy, AK. in May
  • The siege of Vicksburg. In March through May 1864
  • The Red River expedition, in Louisiana in 1864
  • Decommissioned, 20 July 1865
  • Final Disposition, sold November 1865, fate unknown
    Specifications:
    Displacement 633 t.
    Length 202'
    Beam 72'
    Draft 9'
    Speed 5.5 kts
    Complement 176
    Armament
    two 9" smoothbores
    seven 32-pdr smoothbores
    seven 41-pdr rifles
    Propulsion steam

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    By
    Benton 88k USS Benton off Natchez, Mississippi, in July 1864.
    US Navy photo # NH 56664 from the collections of the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Aryeh Wetherhorn
    Benton 63k Wash drawing by F. Muller, circa 1900, depicting USS Benton on the Western Rivers during the Civil War. Courtesy of the U.S. Navy Art Collection, Washington, D.C.
    US Navy photo # NH 55828 from the collections of the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Aryeh Wetherhorn
    Benton 96k Wash drawing by R.G. Skerrett, 1900, depicting USS Benton off Natchez, MS., in July 1864. Courtesy of the Navy Art Collection, Washington, D.C.
    US Navy photo # NH 75623 from the collections of the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Aryeh Wetherhorn
    Benton 99k Inboard and outboard drawings prepared at the time USS Benton was converted for Civil War emplacement. "The Iron Clad Gunboat Benton designed and constructed by Jas. B. Eads, St. Louis, Mo. By order of Maj. Genl. J.C. Fremont, U.S.A.. Commanding Western Department -- Sept. 1861." Courtesy of Lieutenant Commander Lyle W. Eads, USN (Retired).
    US Navy photo # NH 68439 from the collections of the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Aryeh Wetherhorn

    There is no DANFS history for USS Benton at NavSource
    Commanding Officers
    01LT. Bishop, Joshua24 February 1862 - 15 May 1862
    02LT. Phelps, Seth Ledyard11 May 1862 - 15 September 1862
    03LCDR. Gwin, William15 September 1862 - 3 January 1863 (KIA)
    04Acting Master Lord, George P.3 January 1863 - February 1863
    05LCDR. Greer, James AugustineFebruary 1863 - September 1864
    06LCDR. May, Robert L.September 1864 - 7 November 1864
    07LCDR. McCauley, Edward Yorke7 November 1864 - 20 July 1865
    Courtesy Bill Gonyo

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    Pook's Turtles by Aryeh Wetherhorn
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Old Navy" Steam and Sail Index
    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster.
    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 21 September 2012