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NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS Decatur (I)

Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Sloop of War:
  • Built in 1838 and 1839 at New York Navy Yard
  • Launched, date unknown
  • Commissioned, 16 March 1840 as USS Decatur, CDR. Henry W. Ogden in command
  • USS Decatur was assigned to the Brazil Squadron from March 1840 to February 1843
  • Sailed with the African Squadron August 1843 to January 1845
  • Placed in ordinary during 1845 and 1846
  • Sailed, 1 March 1947, for Pensacola Navy Yard and the Gulf of Mexico during the Mexican War
  • Rejoined the African Squadron from 2 February 1848 to 15 November 1849
  • Assigned to the Home Squadron, circa 1850
  • Decommissioned at Boston, 21 August 1852, for repairs
  • Recommissioned, 12 July 1853, USS Decatur joined a Special Squadron to guard the fishing interests of American citizens in North Atlantic waters
  • Sailed from Norfolk, 16 June 1854, for service with the Pacific Squadron along the Pacific coast
  • Decommissioned, 20 June 1859, at Mare Island Navy Yard
  • In ordinary until March 1863, when she was fitted as a harbor battery and stationed off San Francisco
  • Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • Sold, 17 August 1865, at Mare Island
  • Final Disposition, fate unknown
    Displacement 566 t.
    Length 117'
    Beam 32'
    Depth 15'
    Draft 15' 8"
    Speed 10 kts.
    Complement 150
    fourteen 32-pdrs
    two 12-pdrs
    Propulsion sail

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    Size Image Description Contributed
    Decatur 107k

    Commodore Stephen Decatur, Jr. was born in Sinnepuxent, Maryland, 5 January 1779. He died in Washington D.C., 22 March 1820. He is buried in St. Peter's Churchyard, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Appointed Midshipman U.S. Navy, 30 April 1798. Lieutenant 21 May 1799. Captain 16 February 1804. He served as Midshipman on the USS United States, 1798-1799, War with France. Was recognized for conspicuous for gallantry in War with Tripoli, 1803-1804 during the recaptured the USS Philadelphia from the Tripolitans, in the harbor of Tripoli, and destroyed her, 16 February 1804. War of 1812, distinguished for the capture of the HMS Macedonian 25 October 1812; commanded the USS United States at this time. In the spring of 1814 commanded the President and a squadron of three vessels, in the West Indies and flew the pennant of Commodore. 15 January 1815, the USS President had a severe engagement with the British West India Squadron, and surrendered after having lost a quarter of her crew and being surrounded by three frigates Decatur was made prisoner, taken to Bermuda, and from there sent to New London on parole, in the British frigate HMS Narcissus. After peace was declared with Great Britain, Decatur commanded the U.S. Mediterranean Squadron and secured the final treaty of peace with the Barbary Powers. From 1816 to 1820 he was Navy Commissioner. He received the thanks of Congress and a sword for his service before Tripoli and a gold medal for distinguished service in the War of 1812. His sad death from a duel with Commodore Barron was deeply deplored by the whole country. His remains were temporarily deposited in the tomb of Joel Barlow at Washington, but later removed to Philadelphia. Five ships of the United States Navy have been named Decatur, in his honor.
    US Navy photo # KN-2779
    Bill Gonyo
    Decatur 147k USS Decatur "Beating round 'Cape Freward': Straits of Magellan, Dec: 1854". Artwork, signed by "J.Y.T.".
    US Naval History an Heritage Command photo # NH 325.
    Tommy Trampp
    Decatur 147k USS Decatur "Struck by a squall. 'Off Cape Quod' ... Strait of Magellan, Nov. 23, 1854". Artwork, signed by "J.Y.T.".
    US Naval History an Heritage Command photo # NH 2777.
    Tommy Trampp

    USS Decatur (I)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01CDR. Ogden, Henry W.16 March 1840 - 1 June 1842
    02CDR. Farragut, David Glasgow1 June 1842 - 28 February 1843
    03CDR. Abbot, Joel5 August 1843 - 3 January 1845
    04CDR. Pinkney, Richard S.1 May 1847 - 9 July 1847 (Died)
    05CDR. Byrne, Edmund9 July 1847 - 15 November 1849
    06CDR. Green, William1850 - 21 August 1852
     Decommissioned21 August 1852 - 12 July 1853
    07CDR. Whittle, William Conway12 July 1853 - 16 June 1854
    08CDR. Sterett, Isaac S.16 June 1854 - 13 June 1856
     Decommissioned13 June 1856 - 1856
    09CDR. Middleton, Edward1856
     Decommissioned? - 8 January 1857
    10CDR. Thatcher, Henry Knox8 January 1857 - 20 June 1859
    Courtesy Bill Gonyo

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    Last Updated 23 August 2013