(IrcGbt: l. 224'bp.; b. 42'6" ext.; dph. 12'; dr. 9'6"; a. 2 guns)
Wilmington was building at Wilmington, N.C., to the design of Naval Constructor John L. Porter, CSN, in 1863-64. Four boilers and two engines "of sufficient power to insure good speed", driving 8-ft.-diameter propellers, were being finished by Chief Engineer J. H. Warner at the Naval Iron Works, Columbus, Ga.
Secretary Mallory's report, 30 April 1864, revealed: "A fast, light-draft, double-casemated steam ram is making good progress, with armor and machinery in readiness for the hull." In each casemate was to be mounted a gun in pivot. When Wilmington was evacuated, the city's namesake had to be destroyed on the ways to prevent capture by Federal forces.