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NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS General Sterling Price
CSS General Sterling Price (1861- 1862)

Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Sidewheel Ram:
  • Built in 1856 as the wooden river steamer Laurent Millaudon at Cincinnati, OH.
  • Taken into Confederate service in 1861, converted to a ram and renamed CSS General Sterling Price
  • During the Civil War CSS General Sterling Price participated in the;
    Defense of Fort Pillow and Memphis, TN.
    In a coordinated attack CSS General Sterling Price and CSS Sumter defeated the Union Gunboat USS Cincinnati at Plum Point below Fort Pillow
    Sunk, 6 June 1862, during the Battle of Memphis
  • Captured by Union naval forces under Flag Officer C. H. Davis
  • Raised by the Army moved into the Union service under LT. LeRoy Fitch, 16 June 1862
  • Transferred to the Navy at Cairo, 30 September 1862
  • During the Civil War USS General Sterling Price participated in the;
    Action at Steele's Bayou with the Mississippi Squadron in March 1863
    Engagement with the Confederate batteries at Grand Gulf, MS., 29 April to 3 May 1863
    Red River expedition to capture Alexandria, LA. and partial destruction of Fort De Russy, LA. in May 1863
    Siege of Vicksburg
    Porter's Red River expedition in March 1864
    Assigned a cruising station on the lower Mississippi River to protect and support Union forces
  • Decommissioned, 24 July 1865, at Mound City, ILL.
  • Sold, 3 October 1865 to W. H. Harrison
  • Final Disposition, fate unknown
    Displacement 633 t.
    Length 182'
    Beam 30'
    Draft 9' 3"
    Depth unknown
    Speed unknown
    Complement unknown
    four 9" Dahlgren rifles Propulsion steam

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    Size Image Description Contributed
    General Sterling Price 135k

    Sterling Price, born in Prince Edward County, Va., 20 September 1809, attended Hampton-Sydney College 1826-27, and studied law under Creed Taylor. He was Chairton County's representative in the state legislature 1836-38 and 1840-44, and was elected Speaker of the House in 1840. Price was elected to Congress in 1844 but resigned in 1846 to enter the Mexican War as a Colonel. He later became a Brigadier General and served as Military Governor of Chihuahua. General Price then moved to Missouri and was elected Governor in 1852. He was president of the State Convention of 1860 and was placed in command of the state militia. After collecting 5,000 troops, General Price united with the forces of Confederate General McCulloch and won the battle of Wilson's Creek 10 August 1861. After capturing 3,000 Federal troops at Lexington in September, Price retreated into Arkansas and officially joined the Confederate Army in April 1862. He met setbacks at Corinth, Miss., in 1862 and at Helena, Ark., in 1864 before defeating Union General Steele at Red River. He withdrew into Texas in 1864 and in 1865 after the defeat of the Confederacy, he escaped to Mexico. Following the collapse of Maximillian's empire, General Price returned to Missouri, where he died 29 September 1867. Photo courtesy of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History
    Bill Gonyo
    CSS General Sterling Price
    Benton 358k "Admiral Porter's Fleet Running the Rebel Blockade of the Mississippi at Vicksburg, April 16th 1863." Text under the print's title reads: "At half past ten P.M. the boats left their moorings & steamed down the river, the Benton, Admiral Porter, taking the lead -- as they approached the point opposite the town, a terrible concentrated fire of the center, upper and lower batteries, both water and bluff, were directed upon the channel, which here ran within one hundred yards of the shore. At the same moment innumerable floats of turpentine and other combustible materials were set ablaze. In the face of all this fire, the boats made their way with but little loss except the transport Henry Clay which was set on fire & sunk."
    Ships depicted are (from the front to the rear:
    USS Benton (flagship);
    USS Lafayette with
    USS General Price alongside;
    USS Louisville;
    USS Mound City;
    USS Pittsburgh;
    USS Carondelet; transports
    SS Silver Wave;
    SS Forest Queen;
    SS Henry Clay; and
    SS Tuscumbia.
    Currier & Ives, New York. Courtesy of the U.S. Naval Academy Museum, Beverley R. Robinson Collection.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command Photo # NH 76557-KN (Color)
    Robert Hurst
    General Sterling Price 40k CSS General Sterling Price under way on a western river, date unknown.
    The Photographic History of The Civil War in Ten Volumes: Volume Six, The Navies. The Review of Reviews Co., New York. 1911. p. 85.
    Tommy Trampp
    General Earn Van Dorn 373k "Battle of Fort Pillow, First position" Engraving published in Rear Admiral Henry Walke's Naval Scenes and Reminiscences of the Civil War in the United States ... (1877), depicting the action between the Confederate River Defense Fleet and Federal ironclads near Fort Pillow, Tennessee, 10 May 1862. Confederate ships, seen at right, include (from left to right):
    CSS General Earl Van Dorn,
    CSS General Sterling Price,
    CSS General Bragg,
    CSS General Sumter and
    CSS Little Rebel. The Federal ironclads, in the center and left, are (from left to right):
    USS Mound City,
    USS Carondelet and
    USS Cincinnati. A Federal mortar boat is by the river bank in the lower right.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 2049
    Tommy Trampp
    General Beauregard 177k "The Great Naval Battle before Memphis, June 6, 1862". Engraving after a sketch by Alexander Simplot, published in "Harper's Weekly", depicting the action between the Confederate River Defense Fleet and Federal warships off Memphis, Tennessee. In the foreground, the print depicts the Confederate ships (from left to right):
    CSS General M. Jeff Thompson (shown sinking);
    CSS Little Rebel (shown burning);
    CSS General Sterling Price;
    CSS General Beauregard (shown being jammed by the Ellet Ram
    USS Monarch;
    CSS General Bragg (shown aground) and
    CSS Colonel Lovell (shown sinking). In the background are the Federal warships (from left to right):
    USS Queen of the West;
    USS Cairo;
    USS Carondelet;
    USS Louisville;
    USS Saint Louis; a tug; and
    USS Benton. The city of Memphis is in the right distance, with a wharf boat by the shore. Harpers Weekly, 28 June 1862.
    Sons of the South - Memphis Naval Battle
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 58891
    Robert Hurst
    USS General Sterling Price
    General Sterling Price 119k USS General Sterling Price off Baton Rouge, LA., 18 January 1864, with USS Lexington in the left background. The original print is mounted on a Carte de Visite.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 53870.
    Aryeh Wetherhorn
    General Sterling Price 87k USS General Sterling Price off Baton Rouge, LA., 18 January 1864. The original print is mounted on a Carte de Visite.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 53869.
    Aryeh Wetherhorn
    General Sterling Price 48k USS General Sterling Price tied up at a Western Rivers settlement, circa 1863-65.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 60329.
    Aryeh Wetherhorn
    General Sterling Price 66k Pen and ink drawing by Samuel Ward Stanton of USS General Sterling Price.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 65459. Collections of the Navy Department, 1967.
    Robert Hurst

    CSS / USS General Sterling Price
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    US Navy Commanding Officers
     Acting Vol. LT. Richardson, James F. Richardson1863 -1864

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    Last Updated 13 January 2017