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NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS Gertrude

Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Screw Steamer:
  • Built in 1863 as the iron steamer (Gertrude at Greenock, Scotland
  • Gertrude was captured, 16 April 1863, by USS Vanderbilt off Eleuthera Island
  • Purchased from the New York Prize Court by the Navy, 4 June 1863
  • Fitted out at New York Navy Yard
  • Commissioned USS Gertrude,22 July 1863, at New York Navy Yard, Acting Master Walter K. Cressy in command
  • USS Gertrude was assigned to the West Gulf Blockading Squadron and arrived off Mobile in early August
  • On 16 August Gertrude captured Confederate blockade runner Warrior following a 9-hour chase
  • After taking her prize to New Orleans, Gertrude was assigned blockade duty off that port
  • She served as a blockading ship, alternating between New Orleans and Mobile, until May 1864, and was credited with the capture of schooner Ellen, 16 January 1864
  • In May 1864 Gertrude was assigned to blockade duty off the Texas coast, and spent most of the next year off Galveston were she took Eco, 19 February 1865
  • Gertrude also captured over 50 bales of cotton, 19 April 1865, which were thrown overboard by Confederate blockade runner Denbigh during her escape from the blockading fleet
  • Gertrude was decommissioned, 11 August 1865. at the Philadelphia Navy Yard
  • Sold 30 November at New York to George Wright
  • Redocumented as Gussie Telfair in 1866 and sailed as a merchantman until 1878
  • Final Disposition, ran aground at Coos Bay, OR. in 1878
    Displacement 350 t.
    Length 156'
    Beam 21'
    Draft 11'
    Depth of Hold 12'
    Speed unknown
    Complement unknown
    two 12-pdr rifles
    six 24-pdr howitzers
    Propulsion steam
    one propeller

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    Size Image Description Contributed
    336k SS Gussie Telfair (ex-USS Gertrude) as she appeared shortly before running aground in Coos Bay, Oregon. The sleek lines and stealthy portholes of the old blockade runner are still visible, despite the conspicuous white superstructures that had been added later for passenger comfort.
    Photo from Coos County Historical Museum. Image from the following website offbeat Oregon
    Robert Hurst

    USS Gertrude
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
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    Last Updated 2 October 2020