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NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS Princess Royal


Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Iron-clad Screw Steamer Gunboat:
  • Built 1861 as SS Princess Royal, at Glasgow, Scotland
  • Employed as a blockade runner until captured off Charleston S.C. 29 January 1863, by USS Unadalla, USS Housatonic, USS Augusta, USS America and USS Blunt
  • Purchased by the Federal Navy at Philadelphia, 18 March 1863
  • Fitted out for naval service at Philadelphia Navy Yard
  • Commissioned, USS Princess Royal , 29 May 1863, CDR, Melancton B. Woolsey, in command
  • During the Civil War USS Princess Royal was assigned to the West Gulf Blockading Squadron;
    Participated in the engagement with Confederate forces at Donalsonville, LA., 28 June 1863
    Off the Texas coast USS Princess Royal captured the British schooner Flying Scud, near Matamoros, 12 August 1863
    Assisted in seizing schooner Wave, 22 August 1863
    Took Nepture off Brazoa de Santigo, 19 November 1864
    Captured the schooner Flash, 25 November 1864
    Seized schooner Alabama, 7 December 1864
    Captured Cora off Galveston, 19 December 1864
    Captured schooner Anna Sophia in Galveston Bay, 7 February 1865
    Participated in the boat expedition to destroy the wreck of the grounded blockade runner Will-o-the-Wisp
  • Decommissioned, date unknown, at Philadelphia, PA.
  • Sold at public auction, 17 August 1865, subsequently renamed SS General Sherman
  • Final Disposition, sunk 10 January 1874, off Cape Fear, N.C.
    Specifications:
    Displacement 774 t.(lt) 828 t.(fl)
    Length 196' 9"
    Beam 27' 3"
    Depth-of-hold 16'
    Draft 11'
    Speed 11 kts
    Complement unknown
    Armament
    two 30-pdr Parrott rifles
    one 9" Dahlgren smoothbore
    four 24-pdr howitzers
    Propulsion steam and sail

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    By
    Princess Royal 56k Watercolor of USS Princess Royal Erik Heyl, 1960, painted for use in his book "Early American Steamers", Volume I. Courtesy of Erik Heyl.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 63848
    Bill Gonyo

    USS Princess Royal
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LT. Woolsey, Melancton B.29 May 1863 - 11 April 1865
    02Acting Vol. LT. Behm, Charles F. W. (Died in Andersonville Prison)11 April 1865 - 21 July 1865
    Courtesy Bill Gonyo

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    Last Updated 3 January 2014