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Caleb Cushing

 

(Sch: dp. 153; l. 100'4"; b. 23'; dph. 8'8"; dr. 9'7"; a. 1 32-pdr., 1 12-pdr. Dahlgren; cl. Morris)

 

Caleb Cushing, a U.S. revenue cutter also known as Morris, was quietly boarded and seized in the early morning hours of 27 June 1863 while in the harbor at Portland, Maine, by Lt. Charles W. Read, CSN, and his men who had entered the harbor undetected on board their prize schooner Archer. It was Read's plan to get the cutter away from Union shore batteries before daylight, and then set fire to Union shipping in the harbor. As it was dawn before Read's force cleared the Union guns, he found it impossible to carry out his plan, and instead he set out for sea.

 

Lt. "Savez" Read intended to send his prisoners back on Archer after transferring his supplies to Caleb Cushing. However, when about 20 miles at sea, Caleb Cushing was overtaken by 2 steamers. Read ran out of ammunition and was unable to put up a resistance. Ordering his men and prisoners into small boats he fired the cutter after setting a powder train to her magazine. He, his men and his prisoners were captured by the steamer Forrest City. Archer was captured later, and Caleb Cushing soon exploded and was destroyed.