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NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS Monarch


Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Sidewheel Steamer:
  • Built, date and location unknown
  • Purchased by the Federal government at Pittsburg in April 1862, converted to a steam ram
  • Commissioned at Pittsburg as part of Colonel Ellet-s Ram Fleet, CAPT. R. W. Sanford in command
  • After fitting out at New Albany, Monarch began active duty with the Ram Fleet
  • In June she scouted Fort Pillow, joining USS Benton, USS Louisville, USS Carondelet, USS St. Louis, USS Cairo and USS Queen of the West in the Battle of Memphis 6 June, 1862
  • Engaging the Confederate River Defense Fleet, the rams destroyed seven of the southern ships, wiping out the Defense Fleet as an effective naval force
  • USS Monarch rammed CSS Colonel Lowell and CSS General Beauregard
  • Monarch and Lancaster pursued CSS Gen. Earl Van Doren down the Mississippi and up the Yazoo , the Confederates burning the ship below Yazoo City to prevent her capture
  • In June Monarch operated against Vicksburg
  • Monarch participated in the August Army-Navy expedition up to Yazoo River with troops landing at various points along the shore and destroying batteries
  • Monarch joined the expedition to capture Fort Hindman 4 January 1863
  • In April 1863, she joined Lioness, T. D. Horner, and Fulton in supporting Colonel Ellet's Marine brigade in the Tennessee
  • With the fall of Vicksburg, in July, and the collapse of Confederate naval forces on the western rivers, the ram's mission was accomplished
  • Decommissioned and struck from the Naval Register in 1864, laid up in reserve
  • Final Disposition, dismantled at Mound City in July 1865
    Specifications:
    Displacement unknown
    Length unknown
    Beam unknown
    Depth of Hold unknown
    Draft unknown
    Speed unknown
    Complement unknown
    Armament unknown
    Propulsion steam

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    Size Image Description Source
    Monarch 259k "Colonel Ellet's Ram Fleet on the Mississippi" Line engraving after a sketch by Alexander Simplot, published in Harper's Weekly, 1862. Ships in the foreground are: USS Monarch (letter M between stacks), USS Queen of the West (with letter Q) and USS Lioness (letter L). In the left background are: Switzerland (with letter S on paddlebox), Samson and Lancaster. Note cotton bales stacked on deck to protect boilers.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 59007
    USNH&HC
    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 Monarch
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 2 September 2016