Editor’s Note: Do you have information on this ship’s role at the Siege of Petersburg?  Please contact us using the Contact button in the menu at the top of the screen.  We are happy to exchange information with other researchers.

Ship Information (from DANFS)1,2:

Name: USS New Ironsides Type: Ironclad Steamer Tonnage: 3,486
Length: 230’ Beam: 57’6” Draught: Loaded, Forward: 14’5”; Loaded, Aft: 15’8”
Speed: Max: 8 knots, Avg. 6 knots Complement: 449 men Class: Not Listed.
Armament: October, 1864: 2 150-pdr. Parrott rifles, 2 60-pdr. Parrott rifles, 14 11” Dahlgren Smoothbores
Namesake: Frigate Constitution, one of the first ships of the United States Navy, won the sobriquet “Old Ironsides” for her strength in withstanding enemy shot in her famous fight with British frigate Guerriere on 19 August 1812. To continue and enhance Constitution’s tradition of hardy service on behalf of freedom of the seas, the Navy bestowed the name New Ironsides on a powerful ironclad built early in the Civil War.

Images:

33816v: The iron-clad New Ironsides under sail. 3 Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, www.loc.gov/item/2013646155/.]

 

Captain(s):
Commodore William Radford
Captain Image

Captain 2
Captain Image

Captain 3
Captain Image

 

First Offensive Order of Battle (June 13-18, 1864):

  • Not Present4

Second Offensive Order of Battle (June 19-30, 1864):

  • Captain:
  • Crew Strength:
  • Armament:

Third Offensive Order of Battle (July 1-31, 1864):

  • Not Present5

Fourth Offensive Order of Battle (August 1-31, 1864):

  • Not Present6

Fifth Offensive Order of Battle (September 1-October 13, 1864):

  • Not Present (September 1 and 16 and October 1, 1864)7,8,9

Sixth Offensive Order of Battle (October 14-31, 1864):

  • Captain:
  • Crew Strength:
  • Armament: 2 x 150-pdr. Parrott rifles, 2 x 60-pdr. Parrott rifles, 14 x 11” Dahlgren Smoothbores (October ??, 1864)10

Seventh Offensive Order of Battle (November 1-December 31, 1864):

Hampton Roads, Va. | North Atlantic Blockading Squadron | Union Navy (November 1 and December 5, 1864)11,12

Not Present (North Carolina) (December 15, 1864)13

  • Captain: Commodore William Radford (November 1 and December 5 & 15, 1864)14,15,16
  • Crew Strength:
  • Armament: 20 x “guns” (December 15, 1864)17
  • Note: On December 15, 1864, this ship is noted as a “Class 1” vessel.18

Eighth Offensive Order of Battle (January 1-February 28, 1865):

Not Present (North Carolina) (January 1 & 15, 1865)19,20

James River, Va. | North Atlantic Blockading Squadron | Union Navy (February 1, 1865)21

Not Present (February 15, 1865)22

Norfolk Navy Yard, Va. | North Atlantic Blockading Squadron | Union Navy (February 25, 1865)23

  • Captain: Commodore William Radford (January 1 & 15 and February 1, 1865)24,25,26
  • Crew Strength:
  • Armament: 20 x “guns” (January 1 & 15 and February 1, 1865)27,28,29
  • Note: On January 1 & 15 and February 1, 1865, this ship is noted as a “Class 1” vessel.30,31,32

Ninth Offensive Order of Battle (March 1-April 2, 1865):

  • Not Present (March 18 and April 1 & 15, 1865)33,34,35

 

Siege of Petersburg Battles:

  • TBD

 

Siege of Petersburg Involvement:36

New Ironsides was launched on 10 May 1862 by Merrick & Sons, Philadelphia, Pa.; and commissioned at Philadelphia Navy Yard on 21 August 1862, Capt. Thomas Turner, in command.

After final fitting out at Norfolk in the fall, the large new ironclad steamer joined the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron off Charleston, S.C., on 17 January [1863], guarding the wooden blockaders from attack of Confederate ironclads and serving as Rear Adm. Du Pont’s flagship…

[SOPO Editor’s Note: This ship’s earlier Civil War service has been omitted.]

The fall of Fort Fisher on 15 January 1865 and the closing of Wilmington cut off the South’s last source of supplies for its armies in the field and severed Confederate communications with the outside world.

New Ironsides stood out for Hampton Roads on 17 January [1865] to join the James River division supporting Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s final operations against Richmond. As the Confederacy collapsed, New Ironsides steamed to Philadelphia and decommissioned at League Island on 6 April 1865. A fire destroyed the veteran ironclad on 16 December 1866.

 

Bibliography:

    Siege of Petersburg Documents Which Mention This Unit:

      Sources:

      1. “DANFS.” Naval History and Heritage Command, www.history.navy.mil/content/history/nhhc/research/histories/ship-histories/danfs.html.
      2. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Series 2, Volume 1, p. 159
      3. The iron-clad New Ironsides under sail. [Photographed between 1861 and 1865, printed between 1880 and 1889
      4. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume X, pp. 157158
      5. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume X, pp. 324325
      6. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume X, pp. 370371
      7. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume X, pp. 410412
      8. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume X, pp. 462463
      9. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume X, pp. 514515
      10. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Series 2, Volume 1, p. 159
      11. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 3940
      12. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 140142
      13. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 192194
      14. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 3940
      15. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 140142
      16. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 192194
      17. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 192194
      18. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 192194
      19. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 398400
      20. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 597599
      21. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 722724
      22. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XII, pp. 2021
      23. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XII, pp. 5455
      24. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 398400
      25. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 597599
      26. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 722724
      27. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 398400
      28. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 597599
      29. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 722724
      30. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 398400
      31. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 597599
      32. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XI, pp. 722724
      33. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XII, pp. 7173
      34. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XII, pp. 9394
      35. Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion, Volume XII, pp. 116118
      36. “New Ironsides.” Naval History and Heritage Command, https://www.history.navy.mil/research/histories/ship-histories/danfs/n/new-ironsides.html.

      ***



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