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Browsing named entities in James Russell Soley, Professor U. S. Navy, Confederate Military History, a library of Confederate States Military History: Volume 7.1, The blockade and the cruisers (ed. Clement Anselm Evans).

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riety of implements of destruction. Torpedoes, though of more recent introduction than rams, were not wholly new weapons. The idea of the torpedo, first discovered by Bushnell, and developed by Fulton, was rejected by the English Government in 1805, because it was recognized as giving an advantage to a weak navy over a powerful one, and its adoption could only impair the maritime supremacy of Great Britain. On account of this advantage which the torpedo gave to the weaker side, it was brougof Russian harbors. But its great importance was not established until the Civil War, and then only in the second year. The Confederates took it up for the same reason that the Russians had adopted it in 1854, and the English had rejected it in 1805. Driven by the poverty of their naval resources to the use of every device that ingenuity could suggest, in the fall of 1862 they established a bureau at Richmond to elaborate and systematize torpedo warfare; and the destruction of the Housatonic
aval warfare was therefore almost a new art to the officers that were called in 1861 into active service. The long period of profound peace that followed the wars of Napoleon had been broken only by the war with Mexico in 1846, the Crimean War in 1854, and the Franco-Austrian War in 1859. None of these was marked by naval operations on any important scale, and such operations as there were indicated but faintly the coming development. In the contest with Mexico, steamers were used in war for ontributed appreciably to the protection of Russian harbors. But its great importance was not established until the Civil War, and then only in the second year. The Confederates took it up for the same reason that the Russians had adopted it in 1854, and the English had rejected it in 1805. Driven by the poverty of their naval resources to the use of every device that ingenuity could suggest, in the fall of 1862 they established a bureau at Richmond to elaborate and systematize torpedo warfa
periment. The modifications of the past fifteen years had accustomed men's minds to the idea that considerable changes would gradually take place; but none foresaw or were prepared for the tremendous development that was wrought in four years of actual fighting. Modern naval warfare was therefore almost a new art to the officers that were called in 1861 into active service. The long period of profound peace that followed the wars of Napoleon had been broken only by the war with Mexico in 1846, the Crimean War in 1854, and the Franco-Austrian War in 1859. None of these was marked by naval operations on any important scale, and such operations as there were indicated but faintly the coming development. In the contest with Mexico, steamers were used in war for the first time; but the enemy was so destitute of naval resources that their overwhelming importance was not fully recognized. The operations of the navy were confined to the attack of imperfectly-fortified points on the sea
ere indicated but faintly the coming development. In the contest with Mexico, steamers were used in war for the first time; but the enemy was so destitute of naval resources that their overwhelming importance was not fully recognized. The operations of the navy were confined to the attack of imperfectly-fortified points on the seaboard, and to blockading a country that had no commercial importance. The Crimean War advanced a step farther. The destruction of the Turkish fleet at Sinope, in 1853, showed the effectiveness of horizontal shell-firing, as invented by Paixhans, while the success of the French ironclads at Kinburn led the way to the practice of casing ships-of-war in armor. In 1858 experiments were made at Portsmouth with the Erebus and Meteor, two lightly-armored floating batteries; and these were followed, in France and in England, by the Gloire and the Warrior, veritable ironclad cruisers. But the new system was still in its experimental stage; and it was left to the
March 15th (search for this): chapter 2
could be carried out; and the conflict on the Southern side became a species of partisan, desultory warfare. A Navy Department had been established by an act of the Provisional Congress on February 21. Mallory, who had been Chairman of the Committee on Naval Affairs in the United States Senate, was appointed Secretary of the Navy. In matters relating to ordnance and armor, the leading spirit at the Department was Commander Brooke, who was afterward Chief of Bureau. As early as the 15th of March an appropriation of one million dollars was made for the construction or purchase of ten steam-gunboats. The Administration made tremendous efforts to create a navy; but in spite of the greatest perseverance and ingenuity, it found itself checked and hampered at every turn. By dint of using everything it could lay hands on, it got together in the beginning a small and scattered fleet, which had hardly the semblance of a naval force. Six of the revenuecutters came early into its posses
lure of preparation during peace, when plans could be matured, and materials accumulated at leisure, compelled, when the time of action came, a hurried and lavish expenditure. Great as was the task before the United States Government in preparing for a naval war, it was as nothing to that of the enemy. The latter had at his disposal a small number of trained officers imbued with the same ideas, and brought up in the same school, as their opponents. Some of these, like Buchanan, Semmes, Brown, Maffitt, and Brooke, were men of extraordinary professional qualities; but except in its officers, the Confederate Government had nothing in the shape of a navy. It had not a single ship-of-war. It had no abundant fleet of merchant-vessels in its ports from which to draw reserves. It had no seamen, for its people were not given to seafaring pursuits. Its only shipyards were Norfolk and Pensacola. Norfolk, with its immense supplies of ordnance and equipments, was indeed invaluable; but
December, 1861 AD (search for this): chapter 2
competent, and then ordering the unpromoted competent to do their work. It became evident, shortly after the war began, that steps must be taken to remedy the existing state of things; but nothing could be done at once, and it was only in December, 1861, that a law was passed retiring all officers at the age of sixty-two, or after forty-five years of service. By the same law, any captain or commander might be selected for the command of a squadron, with the rank of flag-officer, which shoul valuable prizes made during the war, was captured outside of Havana by a Fulton ferry-boat. Even for fighting purposes, however, the ferry-boats, with their heavy guns, were by no means to be despised. There were purchased altogether up to December, 1861, 79 steamers and 58 sailing vessels, 137 in all. The number of vessels bought during the whole war amounted to 418, of which 313 were steamers. After the war was over, they were rapidly sold, at less than half their cost. The second measu
Lancaster (search for this): chapter 2
being still on the stocks, and the others useless except as receiving-ships. Two more were mere tugs, and, together with the Michigan, stationed on the lakes, may be thrown out of the calculation. Eight others, including the five frigates, were laid up in ordinary. There remained twenty-four steamers, whose disposition on the 4th of March was as follows: *** Class.Name.Station. One screw-frigateNiagaraReturning from Japan. Five screw-sloops (1st class).San JacintoCoast of Africa. LancasterPacific. BrooklynHome Squadron (Pensacola). HartfordEast Indies. RichmondMediterranean. Three side-wheel steamersSusquehanna.Mediterranean. PowhatanHome Squadron (returning from VeraCruz). SaranacPacific. Eight screw-sloops (2d class).MohicanCoast of Africa. NarragansettPacific. IroquoisMediterranean. PawneeWashington. WyomingPacific. DacotahEast Indies. PocahontasHome Squadron (returning from. VeraCruz). SeminoleCoast of Brazil. Five screw steamers (3d class)WyandotteHome S
John M. Brooke (search for this): chapter 2
of trained officers imbued with the same ideas, and brought up in the same school, as their opponents. Some of these, like Buchanan, Semmes, Brown, Maffitt, and Brooke, were men of extraordinary professional qualities; but except in its officers, the Confederate Government had nothing in the shape of a navy. It had not a singley the best kind of workmanship; and in the beginning the only foundry capable of casting heavy guns was the Tredegar Iron Works, which under the direction of Commander Brooke, was employed to its fullest capacity. Worst of all, there were no raw materials, except the timber that was standing in the forests. The cost of iron was ffairs in the United States Senate, was appointed Secretary of the Navy. In matters relating to ordnance and armor, the leading spirit at the Department was Commander Brooke, who was afterward Chief of Bureau. As early as the 15th of March an appropriation of one million dollars was made for the construction or purchase of ten s
Franklin Buchanan (search for this): chapter 2
nly useless, and the effective force was narrowed down to the forty that had steam as a motive power. Another fact which helped to account for the want of preparation in 1861 was the supineness of the Navy Department during the last months of Buchanan's administration. Few wars come on without some note of warning; and this was no exception. The effective force, small as it was, might easily have been so disposed as to be ready for an emergency, without even exciting comment. The failure tent in preparing for a naval war, it was as nothing to that of the enemy. The latter had at his disposal a small number of trained officers imbued with the same ideas, and brought up in the same school, as their opponents. Some of these, like Buchanan, Semmes, Brown, Maffitt, and Brooke, were men of extraordinary professional qualities; but except in its officers, the Confederate Government had nothing in the shape of a navy. It had not a single ship-of-war. It had no abundant fleet of merc
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