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NavSource Online: "Old Navy" Ship Photo Archive

USS Ellen (I)

Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Civil War Medal

Sidewheel Steamer Gunboat:
  • Laid down in 1853 at New York City
  • Launched, 1 February 1853
  • The US Navy purchased the ferry Ellen, 10 October 1861 at New York
  • Commissioned, USS Ellen, 16 October 1861, at New York Navy Yard, Acting Master William Budd in command
  • Ellen was assigned to the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, at Port Royal, S.C.
  • Ellen exchanged fire with the enemy at Tybee Island 24 December 1861
  • Sailed, 31 December 1861, to participate in the successful joint Army-Navy expedition against Port Royal Ferry on the Coosa River
  • In January 1862 Ellen reconnoitered Wilmington River and Wausau Sound, Ga. and engaged five ships under Commodore Joseph Tattnall, CSN, near Savannah, damaging two of the Confederates
  • Early in 1862 Ellen participated in an extensive combined expedition to take control of the seacoast of Georgia
  • Ellen participated in raising the sunken racing yacht America discovered in the St. Johns River on 18 March 1862
  • America had been captured by the Confederates and was later sunk by them to conceal her location
  • In May Ellen engaged a shore battery at Newton's Cut, S.C.
  • She joined in the attack of a Confederate battery between Folly River and Light House Inlet, 3 June 1862.
  • USS Ellen continued to serve in the Folly and Stono Rivers until decommissioned
  • Decommissioned, 30 October 1862, she was used as a carpenter shop by the fleet at Port Royal until the war's end
  • Final Disposition, sold 2 September 1865, fate unknown
    Displacement 341 t.
    Length 125'
    Beam 28'
    Depth of Hold unknown
    Draft 8'
    Speed unknown
    Complement 50
    two 32-pdrs
    two 30-pdr rifles
    Propulsion steam, two paddlewheels

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    Size Image Description Source
    Ellen 114k Line engraving of USS Ellen published during the 19th Century, depicting the ship in 1861-1862, while she was serving as a gunboat.
    US Naval Historical Center Photo # NH 54360
    Robert Hurst
    Ellen 152k The Expedition in Warsaw Sound Line engraving, probably published in "Harper's Weekly", January-June 1862 volume. It depicts USS Seminole and USS Ellen with several transports, and probably represents the expedition to Wassau Sound, Georgia, in late January 1862. Transports (all steamships) present are (from left to right): SS Belvidere, SS McClellan, SS Boston, SS Delaware, and SS Cosmopolitan.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command Photo #:NH 59332
    Robert Hurst
    Ellen 46k Watercolor of USS Ellen by Erik Heyl, painted for use in his book "Early American Steamers", Volume IV. She was originally the civilian ferryboat Ellen, built in 1853.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command Photo #:NH 63700. Courtesy Erik Heyl.
    Robert Hurst
    Ellen 88k Lithograph of USS Ellen by McGuigan, Philadelphia, after a drawing by A.T. Florence, depicting the ship in 1862-1865, while she was serving as a floating carpenter shop at Port Royal, South Carolina.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command Photo #:NH 54361. Courtesy of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1936.
    Robert Hurst

    USS Ellen (I)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
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    Last Updated 7 January 2017